Jalutasime sõber Magnusega veebruaripäikeselist California avenüüd pidi bento-lõunalt kontori poole tagasi ja korraks läks jutt valimiste peale. “Ma pole üldse jõudnud veel lugeda ja otsutada, aga valima ju peab,” ütles Magnus. Kuna olen poole silmaga katsunud ikka kodustel asjadel silma hoida, siis mõtlesin, et saadan talle portsu linke, millest endal on olnud kasu. Read the rest of this entry »
Had some great interview questions from Arkadii Zaitsev, who is writing a piece about Estonian e-residency for a Russian-languaged publication called Meduza (worth checking their design!), operating out of Latvia for freedom of speech reasons. As it took a while to get these thoughts together decided to publish them directly in English too:
As it isn’t a good tone to have a blog sit stale for a year, I figured this place deserves at least a brief set of links as an update on what’s been happening.
The EIR period at Andreessen Horowitz was not only amazing on personal level, but also fruitful professionally. Even though I wrapped up there only in May, since beginning of this year I’ve been working on my next startup venture: Teleport. We officially founded it with Silver and Balaji in April, closed some seed funding soon after and now have been head down building team and product.
On November 14th, we released the first modest piece of our location search tech in public preview, aimed at helping startup people find the best place to live in the San Francisco Bay Area – give it a try and tell me what you think!
If you’re interested more about what we’re up to, read the coming-out-of-the-closet blog post from April, or a more recent one explaining our focus on startup people. Or just lean back and let me explain it to you in 10 minutes in a speech held at Slush 2014:
It is quite amusing now to see how all of this builds on my Slush 2013 speech and blogpost series on Looking at Europe from Silicon Valley… Some things are just meant to come together, I guess.
As you can guess, life on the early stage startup road is quite busy, the good kind of busy. Hence you can find me quicker at these places than on this personal blog for now:
As a follow-up to my post on what an EIR does, I promised to share a little more detail on how I practically go about filtering ideas. Effective filtering, choosing what to engage in and what to respectfully decline fast can be the pillar of effective time management in any case, but even more so when you are growing your own startup ideas list or get bombarded by incoming shiny new things through the dealflow at a firm like Andreessen Horowitz or while networking outside.
The tool I chose to increase control of the process is super simple: write down the list of properties that define an inspiring next venture for you. And then, iterate through discussions.
The fabulous Slush crew has posted a 13 minute video of my speech on how does European tech scene look from Silicon Valley these days:
If you rather prefer long form reading (and to contribute to discussion), this short version later expanded into a series of 3 blog posts :
- On Bridges, Part 1: Realizing how Europe and Silicon Valley are drifting apart
- On Bridges, Part 2: Why Should Europe Care for Silicon Valley
- On Bridges, Part 3: What Can Europe Give to Silicon Valley?
This has been a persistent question since I started my Entrepreneur in Residence gig at Andreessen Horowitz, and one that I have had to both figure out for myself and explain over and over again. If you explicitly search for it, you can find an occasional article or Quora thread on the topic – but as people rightfully point out in those, it is a rather vague role that varies in each case and from VC firm to firm. So, once-and-for-all, here’s what it’s been like for me so far.
This is the final post of 3 contemplating how Silicon Valley and European tech scenes could get closer to each other. The series are an expansion of a short speech I gave at Slush conference in November 2013 – video of which should be online soon. I believe this topic calls for more discussion and thinking along than 15 one-directional minutes on conference stage allowed. To get up to speed, read Part 1 and Part 2 here.
After looking at the widening gap between European and Silicon Valley tech scenes and establishing that the usual first priority, raising money from the other side might not be the most feasible way to fix this – the questions becomes: how can we build more non-financial ties between our scenes?
As US is not paying close attention I believe that the key to the solution is on the European side. And to succeed in driving this change in relationships, Europe needs a mindset shift.
This post is 2nd of 3 discussing ways Silicon Valley and European tech scene could get closer to each other. The series are an expansion of a short speech I gave at Slush conference in November 2013 – video of which should be online soon. I believe this topic calls for more discussion and thinking along than 15 one-directional minutes on conference stage. As an intro, see Part 1 here.
Europe’s tech scene is buzzing. Those of us who have been on both sides can attest that the people innovating there, business models attempted and technologies applied in Europe are very much aligned with what’s happening in Silicon Valley, despite of the separation. So it would make sense to link up more, right?
As a healthy sanity check before jumping to that conclusion, let us ask: why would we need stronger ties? Looking from Europe, that is.
This post is 1st of 3 in the series aimed at discussing ways Silicon Valley and European tech scenes could contribute to and gain more from each other. The series are an expansion of a short speech I gave at Slush conference in November 2013 (video of which should be online soon) but I believe this topic is calls for more discussion and thinking along than 15 one-directional minutes on conference stage.
If you were to sit in the audience of any European tech summit these days you get soaked in action around you. Would it be TechCrunch Disrupt Europe, LeWeb, or the raising 5000-attendee rocket of the region, Slush in the November darkness of Helsinki – there is no arguing that the European startup scene is in its most bustling, vibrant shape ever.
Yet, a lot of this exciting renaissance seems still to be constrained to the Old World continent.
Read the rest of this entry »
Thinking about the linkages between US and European tech investment and startup scenes ahead of the Slush conference in 10 days, I found an interesting paper: Deal or No Deal: The Growth of International Venture Capital Investment (PDF here) by Pandya and Leblang of University of Virginia.
Recommended reading in full for anyone who cares about intercontinental talent and capital flows, but I just wanted to share this fascinating graph:
You can often hear how foreign investments and emigration are discussed as linearly opposite ends of a see-saw: if you get more of cash invested into your country from abroad your skilled talent can stay home and build companies there as opposed to seeking interesting challenges abroad. What the authors show here is rather a two-way street, another re-inforcing cycle where the movement of talented people will eventually build into increased cross-border investment of capital:
We find that US VC firms invest more frequently in countries that have large populations of skilled migrants residing in the US. In stark contrast to existing FDI research, we find that recipient countries political institutions have limited influence over the volume of venture capital deals.