There seems to be a very, definite perception out there, that this whole Active Web movement is once again, for the most part a Silicon Valley, or at the very least, a US, phenomenon.
Maybe, it’s got something to do with the ‘Web 2.0’ party circuit we keep hearing about (you’ve read the posts: ‘oh, I bumped into Blah Blah the other day at conference/party’). Maybe’s it’s because of the inter-linking back and forth between your so-called Silicon Valley heavyweight bloggers. Whatever the case, it does feel like if you’re not over there in the good ol’ US of A then you’re not really in the game.
To use an example, fellow Australian blogger Paul Montgomery, wrote in his predictions for things he guaranteed would happen in 2006: “None of the GEMAYA companies will buy a Web 2.0 startup from outside the US for more than US$20 million.”
Montgomery is so confident, he claims he’ll pour a bucket of green paint over his head if he’s proven wrong.
Now, there’s absolutely no reason that this should be the case. Unlike dot com daze, where you needed access to a friendly VC to launch, this time round you can literally launch out of your garage or study. You certainly don’t need to be anywhere to have access to smart, programmers, in fact they’re a lot more affordable the further you get from Silicon Valley. And it’s not that difficult to create buzz by blogging and other e-marketing approaches.
So I found it very pleasing to read this analysis of Yahoo acquisitions by William Slawski. William lists all Yahoo’s acquisitions since October 2003 and one might be suprised to note that among them are companies based in Hong Kong, France, the UK, China, Brazil and it also mentions the Australian Seven Network JV.
The reality is there is an abundance of companies doing some of the best new Web stuff out there. I happened to notice yesterday, for example, that NetVibes is Paris-based, while Australia’s own OmniDrive has been getting rave reviews over at TechCrunch.
P.S. I hope you look good in green, Monty