Will demographics change start-up investment?Written by Duncan Cameron
There is a growing understanding that as baby-boomers retire, western equity markets will be under pressure as this market segment draws on their lifetime savings (Source: McKinsey April 2005). So what will this mean to start-ups that are looking for new capital? Actually it is quite good news.
First off, as most US, Japanese and European investors are most heavily into listed stocks and bonds, these will be ones most under pressure. One trend that is expected to offset this withdrawal of funds is increase in savings from Chinese and Indian middle classes. Will these new investors take place of retiring ones? Time will only tell, but this instability should cause institutional investors to think twice about staying in most common equities.
Secondly, those remaining investors, faced with an uncertain (at best) market in traditional vehicles,
Software 2005Written by Jim Mackay
The Software 2005 conference is now a wrap. This conference, presented by M.R. Rangaswami and The Sandhill Group, is now an annual event and attendance increased 35% this year over 2004. It is an ideal opportunity for those in enterprise software industry to see what's new and what's coming, as well as to catch up with old colleagues and make new connections. It is also a perfect forum for startups to gain exposure as well as solicit funding and key partnerships.
According to Sandhill, there were 1500 attendees this year, including 100 press and 100 VCs. Half of those in attendance were CEOs. We spotted a number of them, including entrepeneur/CEO (now a VC) Ken Ross, Indus CEO Greg Dukat, Composite SW and entrepeneur Jim Green, former webMethods CEO Phillip Merrick, and a host of others.
M.R. has a rolodex that anyone would die for, and he put it to good use in attracting top executives from major enterprise software companies such as Oracle, Intuit, McKinsey and others for keynote addresses. There were also a number of breakout tracks on latest trends in our industry, including SaaS, open source and offshoring.
There were a couple of unique forums made available for select startups. including Launch and Funding Forum, where startups were given a fixed amount of time to present their business plan to investors, who were invited back to conference floor for further discussions if interested. Mark Cosway, a member of our board of advisors and President of ActStream Technologies, participated in Launch, and reported new contacts with a number of interested investors.