Silicon Valley Watcher - Former FT journalist Tom Foremski reporting from the intersection of technology and media

Why Startups Move To Silicon Valley...

Posted by Tom Foremski - January 19, 2011

I'm constantly meeting companies that have moved part of their operations to San Francisco/Silicon Valley. Usually it is the CEO and/or the marketing and sales group that moves home.

Loic Le Meur, a serial entrepreneur, founder of Seesmic, did the same several years ago, moving to San Francisco from Paris. In a guest column in the UK Daily Telegraph newspaper, Mr Le Meur explains why he moved.

In the Valley, the best companies, entrepreneurs and investors are all in one place. It feels like a campus. Everything you do, from the morning run to the coffee run, is a networking opportunity.Compare this to the fragmentation in Europe, where the next meeting is always a flight away, and you can see why things simply happen more slowly over there. Thirty languages and insufficiently fluent English slow things down even further.

In the Valley, the best companies, entrepreneurs and investors are all in one place. It feels like a campus. Everything you do, from the morning run to the coffee run, is a networking opportunity.

Compare this to the fragmentation in Europe, where the next meeting is always a flight away, and you can see why things simply happen more slowly over there. Thirty languages and insufficiently fluent English slow things down even further.

He lists other advantages:

- the ability to easily higher and fire.

- investors make sure entrepreneurs still have enough shares. In Europe, Angel investors are notorious for taking too large an ownership, which limits incentives.

- the chance to build a global success rather than a "local leader."

His advice to European entrepreneurs: "find your niche and set your heart on being the world leader."


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