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Experienced angel investors, Ron Conway, Founder of Angel Investors LP, and Mike Maples, Founder of Maples Investments, provide a rare look into the ins and outs of angel investing. Conway and Maples discuss how angel investors assess opportunities, provide assistance to entrepreneurs and transition start-ups to larger venture investments or exit. In addition, Conway and Maples provide advice to entrepreneurs about finding one's passion and developing that passion into new ventures, including insight into how much money to raise and how to manage that money after it is in the bank.
Serial entrepreneur Mitch Kapor speaks about the fundamental principles of building successful companies by drawing on his experience as creator of Lotus 1-2-3, Chairman of Second Life, Founder of Foxmarks and a wealth of technical and social entrepreneurship knowledge. Kapor emphasizes the elements of company building that technology has changed, such as faster feedback cycles and lower barriers to entry, as well as the elements that remain the same, such as how to establish culture and trust. Kapor illuminates his observations with contemporary and historical examples that create a context-rich primer on building vibrant companies.
Ping Li from Accel and Ashwin Navin, the President and Co-Founder of BitTorrent, Inc. talk about BitTorrent's journey from an open-source project to being a global standard for delivering high-quality files over the Internet. He discusses how their team worked on changing the landscape of digital media distribution. His company evolved to provide a revenue proposition to some of the largest media companies in the world. Navin mentions the company's plan of scaling internationally in countries like Japan as being key to its success in the future.
Armen Berjikly, the Founder and CEO of The Experience Project, and Julio Vasconcellos, VP of Business Development discuss their experience of building a technology start-up that unites people who can improve each other's lives. Berjikly discusses how he built his new venture from fund raising to establishing the company infrastructure. He talks about the importance of hiring the right people to work in a start-up and illustrates the key role of a "Mentor Capitalist" in the journey of an entrepreneur. Berjikly also describes the financial and psychological challenges an entrepreneur faces while building a company.
Larry Bawden is a co-founder of Jadoo Power, an innovative supplier of fuel cells, and Q1 Nanosytems, a next-generation photo-voltaics provider. Bawden addresses the new landscape in technology and energy and notes the pivotal role of newer technologies in the global economy. He talks about the four fundamental planetary crises - Global Warming, Peak Oil, Population Peak and Resource Depletion that are driving changes in world. Bawden also acknowledges the rise of third generation technology and the fundamental shifts in business that it has created. He believes that these changes have created a favorable environment to launch new ventures.
Stan Christensen is a partner at Arbor Advisors, an investment banking firm where he negotiates on behalf of mid-market technology companies. In this lecture, Christensen builds a framework and illuminates a few of the classical mistakes in negotiation. He defines negotiation as an attempt to persuade or influence a situation. He emphasizes relationship management and problem solving as being fundamental to negotiation. He also alludes to the conceptual framework by illustrating examples from his vast global experience.
Dominic Orr is the President and CEO of Aruba Networks, a supplier of secure mobility and wireless Local Area Network (LAN) solutions for enterprises. Orr unveils Aruba's approach to building solutions for mobile workforces at Fortune 500 and Global 2000 companies like Microsoft, NTT Data, and SAP. He articulates Aruba's strategies for competing with mammoths like Cisco, and emphasizes that speed of execution in this highly competitive market is key to his company's success.
Martin Eberhard is the Co-Founder, President of Technology and former CEO of Tesla Motors, a company that produces the Tesla Roadster, a battery-powered electric sports car. Eberhard discusses his inspiring journey of diverse experiences in building Tesla Motors. He describes the lessons he learned: from the realization of doing something meaningful to thinking an idea through and aggressively following all leads. Tesla Motors which started with two employees is now more than 250 employees strong.
Donna Novitsky, CEO of Big Tent Design and a former venture capitalist at Mohr Davidow Ventures contrasts her experiences as an executive in a start-up, a venture capitalist and as an entrepreneur. Novitsky addresses the role of risk mitigation in investing in new ventures and the importance of having a singular focus, aligning company goals with funding requirements and team work in an entrepreneurial environment. Her motto, "Go big or don't go!" has driven her endeavors from her first job to her new venture.
Introduced by AlwaysOn founder Tony Perkins, this panel discussion considers the new opportunities related to the social networking space. Panelists include moderator Charlene Li, Senior Analyst, Forrester Research; Travis Katz, SVP, MySpace International; Dustin Moskovitz, Co-Founder, Facebook; Rich Rosenblatt, CEO, Demand Media; Gina Bianchini, CEO, Ning; Karl Jacob, CEO, Wallop.
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