The W$J has an article on unexpected conflicts faced by venture capitalists whose portfolio companies change course. These problems are exacerbated by intense competition for profitable business models and the increased holding periods that result from a relatively weak IPO market.
The response has been for VC firms or portfolio companies to adopt conflict-of-interest policies. Another option would be to waive the director's fiduciary duty, though this introduces additional complexity and uncertainty on the legal side, as the ability to contract out of fiduciary duty varies by form of entity and state of organization.
It's a shame that the law relating to the waiver of fiduciary obligation is not clearer because it could provide useful guidance to business people. For some more thoughts on contracting out of fiduciary duty, see the appropriate section of this article.
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