The carnage on the British High street - and its Main Street, USA equivalent - is no blip. The cycle of decline, which has seen a run of recent closures of UK household name retailers and a total of more than 200 medium or large retail businesses going bust over the past five years, is here to stay.
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Supermarkets will go, shopping malls will shrink and high street stores will move mostly online - Retail 3.0 will be a radically altered space
Delighted to report that today Shapeways announced a $30m fundraising led by Andreesen Horowitz. You can read more about it here >> (Shapeways, New York Times, AllthingsD, Wired, GigaOm, Venturebeat). Index Ventures first invested in Shapeways in October 2010 after many months of negotiations to spin out of Philips.
While many looked at Supercell’s phenomenal rise and assumed that, statistically speaking, its best days had to be behind it, my partners and I took the contrary view and decided to lead a €100 million investment in the company.
When our good friend, Andy Rachleff, started Wealthfront with Dan Carroll a few years back, they held a revolutionary belief about how money should be managed. Having been a trustee of several university endowments, Andy had seen how larger and more sophisticated investors managed their funds. Efficient frontiers, rebalancing, tax efficiencies, custom portfolios…. All these were tools to better returns for these endowments. But, these tools were only available to investors who could afford the knowledgeable (and expensive) advice of asset managers.
Budget 2013: We need action to open up UK equity markets to high growth companies says Robin Klein
Economics is occasionally derided as a phony science. Frankly I struggled with it school and university so to me this description really resonates. How can the graphs and formulae in the textbooks ever really capture the behavior of complex organizations and impulsive consumers?
FTSE 100 companies and the Public Sector are failing to take advantage of the transformative potential of the Internet economy, which now represents over 8% of UK GDP.
“Flatlining”, “pre-recovery”, “stagnant”, “sluggish” - we’re running out of adjectives to describe the UK’s seemingly moribund economy. Stripped of its AAA rating last weekend, it shrank by 0.3% in the final quarter of last year , and - amid signs of a possible triple dip recession - more of the same is predicted for 2013.
The Eurozone economy, meanwhile, is a horror show in slow-motion. After a contraction of 0.6% last year, the European Commission predicts that the 17 nation region collectively will shrink by 0.3% this year. And there will be no return to growth until 2014.
200,000 downloads per month don’t happen everyday in the enterprise software universe, especially when you’re talking about a piece of infrastructure software enables search in Big Data. ElasticSearch – based in Amsterdam – was putting up those numbers and growing even faster. Clearly, they were doing something special.
IT’S been described as “the $4.2 trillion (£2.7 trillion) opportunity”. According to the Boston Consulting Group, there will be 3bn internet users globally by 2016. If it were a nation, the internet-based economy would rank in the world’s top five. And the UK sits at the forefront, with 8.3 per cent of GDP now online – the highest proportion in the G20.
The most successful venture-backed companies are those with great entrepreneurs, disrupting a market at just the right time. Clearly the capital and claimed expertise of VCs do not on their own create a winning company. The entrepreneur and founding team are the most critical building blocks. After all, entrepreneurs can be successful without venture capitalists, but the reverse is obviously not possible. Venture capital amplifies the success of the best startup companies, and also in marginal cases, the capital and support of a good venture-capital firm can make the difference between a positive or negative outcome for all concerned.