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Venture firm Andreessen Horowitz hires software veteran as adviser

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Venture-capital firm Andreessen Horowitz has added software veteran Kenneth Coleman to its roster of advisers, bringing expertise in a hot area for start-ups to one of Silicon Valley's most aggressive venture firms.

Coleman, 70, will provide mentorship, introductions and advice to Andreesen Horowitz portfolio companies, said Ben Horowitz, a partner who counts Coleman as one of his own mentors. Coleman hired Horowitz for his first job in Silicon Valley, a position at Silicon Graphics.

"I hope to be asked good questions, be a good listener, provide insight, open doors, make connections that might matter," Coleman said.

He has already helped Andreessen Horowitz portfolio companies make presentations at a pharmaceutical company he advises, he said. Start-ups generally hope that getting in front of bigger players in their field might land them a new customer or partner.

Coleman is the founder of ITM Software, a provider of information-technology management services. He also spent years in management positions at graphics-display company Silicon Graphics Inc; video-game publisher Activision; and computer-services company Hewlett Packard .

He joins Andreesen's existing special advisers, former Washington, DC, mayor Adrian Fenty and former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers.

(Reporting By Sarah McBride; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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