At the Venture Summit Silicon Valley 2010 last week the mood was mostly upbeat while some concerns remain, obviously, about the investment industry. On the down side VC fund raising is considerably down but many would argue that is actually a good thing. On the positive side we are seeing increased IPO activity with 23 IPOs so far in 2010 up from seven in 2009. Tim Draper with Draper Fisher Jurvetson characterized this as part of the “shark tooth” cycle where we saw a large drop off in returns over recent years but now we are building upwards for the next 15 year investment cycle. If this holds true we are at the beginning of a extended investment boom that should yield good returns over the next decade.
Joe Schoendorf of Accel Partners spoke about his recent participattion in the World Economic Forum Summit on the Global Agenda 2010 which gives him a global perspective. He pointed out this is the best and worst of times and reflected on the gains, or lack of them, over the last ten years. The good part is there is lot’s of innovation happening globally and many markets are ripe for disruption. On the down side he emphasized how the U.S. is falling behind the rest of the world in education. Accel currently has 999 job posting on their site for their portfolio companies and they can’t find enough qualified applicants in the U.S. to fill them. There is not enough engineers and computer scientist to fill these positions so he concludes,”Our education system in this country sucks and it is the process of killing the United States of America”.
You can find more videos from the Summit at http://alwayson.goingon.com/AOEvents/VCMoney/Venture-Summit-Silicon-Valley-2010#day-block-1.