“The anthropologist Marcel Mauss once said that the difference between magic and religion is that people actually believe in magic. But wearing a FitBit, it is easy to imagine what it feels like to believe in God. Clipped on my bra strap or tucked into a pocket, my FitBit watches over me. It converts even the most pointless errand into a pilgrimage. The final destination is more steps,” writes Moira Weigel. [Source: The New Inquiry]
Zhou Qunfei is the world’s richest self-made woman. Ms. Zhou, the founder of Lens Technology, owns a $27 million estate in Hong Kong. She jets off to Silicon Valley and Seoul, South Korea, to court executives at Apple and Samsung, her two biggest customers. She has played host to President Xi Jinping of China, when he visited her company’s headquarters. [New York Times]
‘Twitter may not yet be a broken company, but it sure is a hapless one. For most of its history, Twitter has been decried by its most ardent users as The Company That Is Not Facebook and thus something of a failure, despite its 83-percent revenue growth over the past 12 months.’ [Source: Pando.com]
We are at that point in the “on demand economy” cycle. The very few breakouts– Airbnb, Lyft and Uber are pretty much it, and Uber dominates the field in users, valuation, and funding– can raise billions each and are being encouraged to grow as fast as possible. [Source: Pando.com]
San Francisco-based company Compass, which provides automated reporting and benchmarking software to startups and tech companies worldwide, has released its latest report on the global startup ecosystem. Regions with the fastest growing ecosystems include Berlin, Bangalore, Amsterdam, London and Tel Aviv. [Source: StartupCompass].
“Entrepreneurs might misdiagnose anxiety as something else. If your investors are all of a sudden meddling in the business, you might be seeing anxiety. If your investors are asking for endless amounts of data, you might be seeing anxiety. If your board meetings have become tense and difficult, you might be seeing anxiety,” writes venture capitalist Fred Wilson. [Source: Fred Wilson Blog].
Hunter Walk, early-stage investor at Homebrew, approached Anne Dinneen, CIO of Hamilton College, about how VCs evaluate venture partnerships. She said “assembling managers with different backgrounds can contribute to a more diverse set of perspectives and hence investment opportunities”. [Source: Hunter Walk Blog]
“Imagine you had a machine where you put in a dollar and five dollars come out, sometimes ten,” says Avi Hasson. “We have that machine and it’s called the Office of the Chief Scientist.” [Source: Forbes]
“But the Stream, mobile applications, and moving images: They all show a departure from a books-internet toward a television-internet. We seem to have gone from a non-linear mode of communication — nodes and networks and links — toward a linear one, with centralization and hierarchies,” writes Hossein Derakhshan. [Source: Medium]
Judging by his demeanor, you might have expected the man to run a company like Etsy, amassing his fortune one macrame teddy bear at a time. But no. This kind, graceful creature was none other than Daniel Ek. And the company he founded was — and still is — among the most hated startups in all of techdom: Spotify. [Source: Pando]
In the US, bitcoin is the fastest growing sector followed by photo sharing and physical storage, according to venture capitalist Tomasz Tunguz. [Source: Tomasz Tunguz Blog].
“My previous corporate life was full of freshly pressed suits, half-windsor ties, and polished black shoes … Fast forward to my first day at Macropod, in a t-shirt and a pair of old jeans – while setting up my workspace, I started getting my calendar ready and asked the boss man (who literally sat behind me in our open-plan shared office space) what the regular schedules meetings are that I need to know about. Blank stare.” [Source: Macropod]
“Agile did indeed represent a positive step forward, but I do not believe it went far enough,” says Adam Pisoni, CTO of Yammer. [Source: First Round Review]
“Most startup community things suck (incubators, accelerators, schools, government initiatives, hackathons, conferences, etc). All are well intended but most don’t deliver real value, except for cash. Some do more harm than good,” says John Ramey. [Source: Medium]
After its previous post about why Macropod chose to stay in Australia, cofounder Alan Downie received quite a few questions about raising money in Australia vs raising in the US and about their experience funding a startup generally. Whilst the post was quite personal, and very much about their journey, it seems to have resonated quite strongly with a lot of readers. [Source: Macropod Blog]