Archive for October 2006

1st TrendSlam a great success!

October 20, 2006

TrendSlam LogoCongratulations to Monty and his team for organizing the 1st TrendSlam in history. A well attended event of top media experts and entrepreneurs was challenged to present in exactly 5min their ideas, trends and thoughts about the future in “new media”. Top speakers at this well attended event were i.e. Felix Petersen from Plazes, Anina and Florian Forster from Fon (have you seen their recent announcement to give away routers free-of-charge?), who all presented a compelling story and value proposition. The next TrendSlam is supposed to take place in New York with a focus on US trends. Well done all together!

Cleantech on the rise!

October 10, 2006

Cleantech has been on the rise for quite some time now! Investors are putting a lot of money to work in exciting areas such as photovoltaics, energy mgmt, water treatment or nanotechnologies. In addition to professional investors, governments and politicians are also acknowledging the importance of this sector. The recent decision by the European Commission to set up a  €100M fund is a good move into the right direction.

More to come on this end for sure…..

Google buys YouTube for stunning $1.65Bn

October 10, 2006

What started off as a head-line on WSJ on Friday is now official. Google buys YouTube for an amazing $1.65Bn in stocks according to various sources. Obviously, industry experts had expected such a move from either Google, Yahoo or Microsoft, but the speed of the acquisition comes as a surprise for many of us I believe.

Recommendation: Video is on the move! After the announcement of ProSiebenSat1 to acquire a minority stake in the German YouTube – myvideo – , the recent Google / YouTube deal is another sign, that expectations are high in user generated content / video.

Takeaway: Apparently a deal, which makes everybody happy! The three founders probably can each go home with a few hundred $M in their pockets. The investors behind this deal, notably Sequoia Capital, might have delivered a 41x return on invested money one this one year+ investment according to TechCrunch. Investors applaud the bold move by Google and send up the Google stock price by a few points in Monday’s late night trading. I am confident, that Video is still at the beginning and that we will see many more things – hopefully also here in good old
Europe – happening in this space.

Qype gets funding – How to generate revenues?

October 4, 2006

Qype today announced a financing round, led by Advent and Partech International. Established by Internet-Entrepreneur Stephan Uhrenbacher in 2005, qype is a user-generated recommendation platform for any locals needs, i.e. Restaurants, Hotel, services, etc.

Takeway: Without any question, there is an increasing trend away from standard old-fashioned yellow pages, towards UGC sites for local information and interest. The US-based companies such as Insiderpages, Yelp or Judy’s Book, have all been trying for quite some time now to establish UGC sites in these special interest topics. However, how to make money with this content still remains one of the big open questions. Some have been trying to tap into the local advertising market by literally calling up SMBs/SMEs directly. To date, apparently with limited success. Although US SMBs seem to be more open towards internet-based advertising compared to their European counterparts, the big internet related spending still goes directly into paid searches a la Google. It remains to be seen which money-making route Qype will go down in the near future. Paid Google advertising should clearly not be the only way to generate money.