Transcript - the boom


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Transcript - the boom

  1. 1. The bubbleThe boomNarratorMore usually, bubbles are connected to innovation and one incident of recent times thatcombined the shock of the new with a bubble of belief was the dot-com boom.Mariana‘The dot-com revolution was associated with people talking about the new economy, thatsomehow economies, because of the great productivity enhancement that the IT revolutionbrought about, that somehow we could even avoid the business cycle – no more busts, justbooms.’NarratorBased on a belief that the internet would revolutionise the way the world worked, it helpedcreate businesses from the most unlikely beginnings.Greg Hadfield‘Soccernet was almost an accident really; it was entirely down to my son Tom who was thenaged 12.He, like me, had always been interested in football; the puzzle was why he kept running inand out of the living room every Saturday afternoon, and it was because he was memorisingthe football results, going back to his computer, posting them on a server in Chicago,unbeknown to us, and thousands of people around the world were finding it and looking at theresults.And this was not just before Google – this was really before Yahoo. And way back in the dayswhen there was barely the web. He had to sit there with a dictionary on his knee, trying tomake sure that he spelled the words correctly, because no one knew for years that Tom wasonly a 12-year-old boy.Reading up on what was happening in the States at the time, I got the feeling that thispossibly was one of the great inventions of mankind, that this was going to change the worldin the way Gutenberg had changed it in print. So we built the brand from scratch.I had to stay up ’til one, two in the morning, and often having to rely on Tom to stay up ’til 10,11 o’clock at night after he should have been doing his homework and gone to bed, to putBarnsley 1 – Huddersfield Nil on a wet Wednesday.And it was, it was exciting virally, millions of football fans around the world who were joiningthe internet, getting connected, spread it by, literally by, I would say word of mouth, but ofcourse it was word of email.Eventually it became a hot property.And big business started to be interested and big money.Everyone was talking about the internet.There were ludicrous valuations. There were people who didn’t know how to build but knewhow to buy.I still bump into people who I offered, I think it was 30 per cent of Soccernet, whatever thatmeant, for £60,000.’
  2. 2. NarratorSoccernet was benefitting from the dot-com hype that would ultimately lead to an explosiveworldwide bubble.Rory Cellan Jones‘If you’ve got a story of a 16 or 17 year old creating a business in a back bedroom on hishome PC which is suddenly making him and his family worth millions, that’s obviously goingto be attractive to the media.’Michael Jackson‘The media’s job is to sell papers – there’s no point saying “It’s really boring, the economy’sonly growing at two per cent but everything’s fine.”You know, why are you interested in that? You are much more interested in “The housingmarket’s booming” or “The housing market’s declining” or “The housing market’s declined andwe see green shoots.”’James MontierBy and large the average media I think unfortunately is involved in fuelling the bubble. And allthat does is just to create an enormous of noise rather than actually create any information.US news archive At 11:00am this morning the company stock went public and Wall Street went bonkers.Initially offered at a price of 28 dollars a share, Netscape shot up to 72 within minutes.Greg Hadfield“Even to me, the valuations were crazy. But you went along with them obviously becausethere was a certain amount of kudos for having a valuation.You don’t realise you’re in a bubble. You realise that life is exciting, that the stock market isgoing up, and it wasn’t just the dot-com boom that was fuelling the stock market, there was ageneral upturn.In 1999, Soccernet is bought by Disney, by ESPN Disney; and it sold for 40 million dollars.’Archive syncQ: How many companies have you run so far in your life?Tom: Well I started off with a football internet site when I was 12 and I am now working on aneducational internet site. Schoolsnet.Q: And how old did you say you were?Tom: I’m 17.Greg Hadfield‘It all started with a 12-year-old boy doing it himself and then involving his dad who did do hisfair share of work. And will probably be forever known as the father of Tom Hadfield and I’mtotally happy with that.’