No BS Blog

Blog Post #2: The Silicon Forest

May 25, 2008

There’s an interesting debate raging between Michael Arrington of TechCrunch and Glen Kelman of Redfin about what it takes to build the next Silicon Valley and whether or not a major research institute is required to feed the entrepreneurial pipeline. You can debate the merits of each argument but think that they’re arguing over something of a moot point. I do think there is something very special about the entrepreneurial environment here. But I don’t think you can pin it down to just one thing. I asked one client the other day, a serial entrepreneur who asked to remain off the record (tsk, tsk!), and he chalked it all up to Microsoft. That by giving so many employees a sizable equity stake, they not only had a vested interest in Microsoft’s success, but also provided this next generation of entrepreneurs with a capital base and the all-important playbook which has become the blueprint for start-up success. Sort of like an inverted pyramid scheme, but one where risk-taking truly reaps its own set of rewards. Of course, maybe it’s just the rain.

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