The best of the rest – Day 2 at LeWeb’11
Day 2 of Le Web and plenty more action, advice and announcements from some leading figures in the tech and marketing industry. Below are some of the highlights from the day in bite sized chunks!
The money panel – underperformance of IPO companies
The money panel consisted of Jeff Clavier, Founder & Managing Partner of SoftTech VC; Harry Nelis, Partner of Accel Partners; Dave McClure of 500 Hats and Eric Archambeau, General Partner of Wellington Partners. They discussed, among other things, the performance of IPO companies and specifically, their underperformance. It’s the year that has seen Groupon, LinkedIn & Zynga (currently filing) IPO and McClure in particular explained the problem of comparing these companies as like for like.
They also explored the potential for mobile investments, which so far has been largely focused on gaming, with the likes of Rovio. Mobile & local was discussed as being part of the fabric of tech investments, showing that there may be a lot more to come in this area.
Airbnb to expand
Brian Chesky, founder of Airbnb was interviewed by Sarah Lane, who grilled him about what’s next for the impressive company. Following a second round of investment July this year to the tune of $112 million, their ambition is to get big and get big quick. They are focused on international expansion with a particular focus on Europe, as Chesky explained that Paris (the host city for LeWeb) is the second most visited city on the site. Ambition is big at Airbnb, and Brian said that they want to give people access to space in the same way that Google gave people access to information, becoming universal in that respect.
Xbox to become an entertainment hub
Chris Capossela, senior vice president of Microsoft Corporation, revealed the company’s plans for Xbox and particularly with regard to entertainment. Rather than being a gaming device, he explained that they wanted to develop a new type of entertainment hub, which they want to achieve by smart developer collaboration.
They have launched a software developer kit to support this and have also released a new mobile app, available on the Nokia Lumia phone, which in itself shows a new approach to content distribution from Xbox, and its ability to go cross-device. The future is all about Xbox Live – their cloud service that helps bring content together across different devices.
Following Steve Jobs
You would expect Steve Jobs to be present at Le Web in some way, and it was through an inspiring talk by Carmine Gallo, that he was. Gallo is the author of ’7 Principles of Innovation’ based on the “Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs.â€ He shared lessons put forward by Steve Jobs – though he wasn’t knowingly ‘teaching’ people – and the theme throughout the talk was passion. He shared Jobs’ idea that “people with passion can change the world for the better” and that you have to have a passion for what you’re doing if you really want to make a change.
The media game is changing
Undoubtedly one of the most interesting panels and discussions for the day, consisted of Paul-FranÃ§ois Fournier, Executive Vice President of Orange Technocentre; Gabe Rivera, Founder & CEO of Techmeme; Bruno Patino, Senior Executive Vice President & Strategy Digital Director of France TÃ©lÃ©visions Group & France 5 and Brad Garlinghouse, President & Consumer Applications & Commerce Group of AOL.
They discussed the impact that social media and technologies were having on the traditional media industry. Bruno Patino seemed particularly aware of the real change this was having, claiming that “We are still in the game, but we don’t control the game anymore”. There seemed to be a fair amount of contention about the role of location, and whether local news is, by definition, less ‘newsworthy’. It provided some interesting food for thought and highlighted the need for traditional media industries and bodies to adapt in order to keep up.