By Dylan Tweney
“I wanna be a billionaire so freakin’ bad …”
When he sings the song “Billionaire,” Andrew Chung is different. Unlike you or me, he has a pretty good shot at making the words come true. That’s because Chung is a partner at Khosla Ventures, one of the most idiosyncratic and powerful venture capital firms in Silicon Valley.
“Buy all the things I never had …”
But he’s also different because the man can actually sing pretty well. He’s such a good vocalist, in fact, that he was a finalist in a major musical competition — Hong Kong Idol in 2002 — and was offered a contract from one of Asia’s biggest record labels.
He could have been a star.
Instead, he turned it down to continue his business career. Good thing he did, because now he’s backing some companies that could truly change the world — like EcoMotors, which makes an internal combustion engine that’s 15 percent to 50 percent more efficient than modern technologies; or LanzaTech, which captures carbon monoxide and other waste products from industrial plants and converts them into fuel and useful chemicals.