Brett was asked by The Entrepreneurs Interactive Club at Imperial College London Business School to present on the subject of ‘building entrepreneurial teams’. On March the 19th Brett joined Allan Wallace of Octopus Ventures and Paul Dowling of Dreamstake to present on how to build world class start-up teams.
The Daring Journey by Jos White
Jos White of Notion Capital has just started a new blog called ‘The Daring Journey’. The blog will describe what it’s like to be an entrepreneur and also life in general! He’ll be writing about both but it will be mainly focused on the converging worlds of technology, investing and being an entrepreneur.
You can see the blog at – http://www.thedaringjourney.com
Seedcamp Road Trip 2012 – Every tech entrepreneur’s wildest dream come true!
I am occasionally asked about Seedcamp’s funding model and the real value add that Seedcamp brings to a start-up company. The question comes from entrepreneurs who haven’t yet experienced a Mini-Seedcamp or Seedcamp Week. When I answer this question, apart from the money, I normally talk about the calibre of the mentors, the access to the best and most successful entrepreneurs in Europe and the ability, through those mentors and entrepreneurs, to reach out to and get in touch with almost anybody in business in Europe. I also talk about the links that Seedcamp has with the US tech scene and suggest that the aspiring entrepreneur speak to one of the Seedcamp alumni to get a firsthand account of the value that Seedcamp brings.
When I am asked that question in the future, I will simply point to this web page http://bit.ly/w0EEb5 .
Check this out! Which other accelerator/incubator/investor has the capacity to pull off a Road Trip like this?
– Kicking off in New York from Saturday 18th until Wednesday 22nd
– Staying in Boston from Thursday to Saturday 25th
– In San Francisco and the Bay Area from the 25th until the 6th of March
– Visiting Seattle on March 7
– Flying to San Diego and Los Angeles on March 8 and 9,
– Wrapping things up in Austin at SXSW until March 13th.
There are three goals for this trip:
- To learn and be inspired
- To get some business done
- To have some fun and make new friends
The Seedcamp Roadies have already visited the offices of Union Square Ventures, ETSY, Tumblr, Highland Capital Partners and they have only just touched down in the land of the brave! As a tech entrepreneur, being able to go on a Road Trip like this, is WAY BEYOND PRICELESS! If this was a ticketed event you could sell out to US based entrepreneurs in minutes – God only knows what they would pay for this type of access?
Just imagine if you could spend almost a month with a bunch of fellow entrepreneurs meeting some of the best tech teams in the world, some of the best entrepreneurs in the world, some of the best VCs in the world and having a blast while doing it. Duuuuh!
Knowing most of the Seedcamp Roadies, I am sure that goal number three – the fun and friends bit – is in the bag. I can’t wait to hear about the learning, inspiration and, best of all, the deals that were done!
Here is the seedcamp.tumblr.com blog which has the daily updates of the trip.
Sign up for the next Seedcamp in Tel Aviv http://www.seedcamp.com/events/seedcamp-tel-aviv
2012 starts with a BANG!
The vacations seems like a very distant memory as we hit the ground running at Forsyth Towers in January – unbelievably we are already almost 6 weeks into the new year! We completed 2 assignments in January for our favourite e-invoicing SaaS company Tradeshift . We have now built out their sales leadership team in the Netherlands, Germany, France and the UK (2). We also completed a Venture Partner assignment for Connect Ventures, it’s great news when another VC enters the European ecosystem!
Our Seedcamp portfolio companies are going from strength to strength. Brainient raised $1.8M from Atlas Venture and Credo Ventures. GrabCAD raised a $4M Series A led by Matrix and David Skok will join the board of directors. Congratulations to Robot Media, the company received its second consecutive Publishing Innovation Award at Digital Book World New York.
Brett has been invited to present “An evening with Forsyth Group” at London Business School, talking broadly about the Hi Growth Technology Ecosystem. We hope to have a video of the evening to share.
Ajit Joakar of Futuretext top predictions/trends for 2012:
Live blogging casts, Transhumanism, SOPA, the rebirth of SMS and more…
1) What if you called a bandwidth crunch and no one came? AKA have you ever seen a bandwidth crunch in Boise Idaho?
2) The decline, fall and potential rebirth of SMS in a world dominated by Smart phones
3) Will we see a compromise on SOPA?
4) Why Facebook will make an impact beyond advertising in 2012
5) Free.fr and the business model of unbundling the set top box: I have been tracking the rise of free.fr for some time .. and it could be truly disruptive. Gigaom explains the context and says that the set-top box could be a stealth weapon. Unbundling – decoupling the set-top box could be a powerful concept. It is also relatively easy for other providers/countries to also do the same i.e. decouple the set top box from the network and provide connectivity services by including Nano cells/femtocells etc
6) The perfect storm driving the uptake of Smart cities : Relating to my work on the advisory board of the Word Smart Capital Initiative – Amsterdam, in the recession, many local governments all over the world will adopt the idea of smart cities. Smart cities reflect ‘Internet of things’ in action. There are three drivers to Smart cities: the Smart home, the smart building and mobile devices. However, the biggest driver for Smart cities could well be Smart data and the enabling of people to ‘add intelligence’ to locations and objects –ex the tweeting cat door , the live blogging cat , Adruiono etc. This is a perfect storm of many elements: Cheap sensors , open source hardware and software, Sensors in mobile devices, networked homes and most importantly, Open data. For instance, the European Commission has launched an open data strategy and here in the UK, professor Nigel Shadbolt will lead an “Open Data Institute” with Tim Berners-Lee. This is the perfect storm driving Smart cities. See my presentation at the Oxford University on Apps for Smart cities
7) Tech policy issues impact mainstream computing because they effect both cloud computing and the Internet: Cloud computing is everywhere – but the technology is not the only issue now for CIOS. SOPA, the Patriot act and other regulations are now taking center stage. Privacy, identity and cybersecurity dominated tech policy headlines coming. The U.S. government’s National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace addressed key issues around creating an “identity ecosystem online.”, the eG8 showed that online innovation and freedom of expression still need strong defenders. We covered this in the policy bloggers network – Fostering trust in the Cloud in the face of law enforcement access to data and IGF – Nairobi : voices from the blogosphere and beyond
8) Social media ‘inside’ like ‘Intel inside’ – TV finally becomes a ‘social’ platform: Social media is fast becoming ‘embedded’ i.e. ‘Social media inside’ (just like Intel inside ). The value of Social media is not in itself but rather as a component of other services. This will have the greatest impact on TV this year. Already, we can login via facebook or twitter, we can logon using spotify on virgin (i.e. listen to spotify on virgin media) etc. Social media recommendations via TV, co-viewing apps (tablet apps used to watch with TV) etc all are becoming mainstream. A year ago. Western Europe suffered its first Q1 drop in TV sales ever and now Smartphones, tablets are edging out television sets on buyers list-Accenture. So, this year, TV will finally become a social platform – despite some resistance from the traditional TV purists.
9) Transhumanism: I have been interested in transhumanism like many in the technology industry specifically my latest book – Meditation in the age of facebook and twitter – this trend of ‘augmenting human capability through technology’ is being picked up by more mainstream companies – IBM says mind reading is no longer a science