My bad..Its been a long two weeks since the last post. Looking at a ton of new deals and really exciting things have kept me away. Facebook / Goldman Deal..wow. LinkedIn talking about filing, attending the UBS Tech and Media conference and Linda Gridley’s awesome event on the 11th. With that said, here is the rest of our top ten list from 2010 so I can bury this and move on with our posts.
#7: Growth of the secondary markets: This has been fascinating to watch over the past few years. We got a very early look at Sharespost from my friend and founder of the company Greg Brogger a while back and he has done a great job getting them off the ground. With Second Market and Sharespost offerings, they have effectively created another opportunity to create liquidity among founders, employees and investors. With the public markets virtually still shut down for many smaller companies, this alternative for individual and institutional investors has been awesome. Huge dis-intermediation. Love it.
#6: Growth of Tablet based computing: I used to use an HP tablet back in 2006 that was so cumbersome and frankly not attractive, that I all but gave up on the format. The IPAD revolution has converted me. They are legitimate on their own without having to be a replacement for the laptop. Changes the way we work, read, play and consume.
#5: Revival of the Merger and Acquisition market: Deals are back in vogue. Corporate balance sheets are flush with cash and innovation and R&D is so often now confused with the M&A or Business Development department. Given we see this continuing well into the next few years, we look at companies primary strategy as being M&A. Very few entrepreneurs see themselves wanting to run a public company and dealing with the hassles, the expense and the short term mentality. The classic acquirers are back again.
#4: Data transformation: Lets just say the last 20 years has been about Data gathering and process. The next 20 will be about usage, information advantage and prediction. This is a huge change. We are looking for those great companies taking advantage of this approach
#3: NY is on Fire: I have posted before about how bullish I have been since the beginning on the NY Metro marketplace. Sometimes I felt as if I was screaming from the hills but no one was listening. Well that is certainly not the case. NY has not only become a legitimate place to start and operate a business, it now the fastest growing venture regions in the country. New funds, lots of angel and seed capital to support start-ups and entrepreneurs who seem to be business driven first and technology driven second. That’s refreshing. I love the west coast, but the east is here to stay this time. Bet on it.
#2: Media transformation: The landscape has transitioned from one consisting of a phone monopoly and three television networks to a variety of networks delivering a broad range of new and re-purposed content to all sorts of devices: allowing consumers to communicate and collaborate. Business models have also undergone significant change. The usage of media and communication is billed by the multiple methods. Furthermore, the notion of immediate media and communication consumption has been altered by the time and place shifting. Individuals communicate across – and expect seamless transparency between – home and office, device and device, and domestic and international. Yet there is still a huge disconnect between Madison avenue and silicon valley. Interesting place to be..
#1: Universal Connectivity: We saw the real beginning of this in 2010. We expect this to be the theme well into this decade. Look around you, visit CES, talk to your clients, ask the consumers. Its everywhere. Our view: We are careening down a path towards a world defined by Universal Connectivity: a place where barriers are broken down between devices, content, applications, people, platforms and data. The integration of these disparate entities into a unified system will require a rich set of solutions and infrastructure. The breakthrough companies enabling this new reality will have sustainable competitive advantageand huge asset value for years to come. Bring on 2011!!