The Story of Skype (Stanford 2009)

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Seminar description: Private - Public Models of Innovation & Entrepreneurship in Europe. …

Seminar description: Private - Public Models of Innovation & Entrepreneurship in Europe.
Our final Winter Quarter session will explore private vs. public models of innovation and entrepreneurship using Skype and the Danish government's Mindlab as examples.

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  • 1. The Story of Skype Sten Tamkivi, Chief Evangelist European Entrepreneurship and Innovation Thought Leaders , Stanford University, March 9th , 2009
  • 2. Skype – The European Innovation Success Story
  • 3. Enabling the world’s conversations Voice Video Data IM SMS Identity
  • 4. Over 25% of call minutes carry video 28 Languages Available in nearly every country on E arth 8% of world’s calling minutes* *Source: Telegeography 08 30% of users use Skype for business purposes 100 Billion Skype-to-Skype Minutes as of Feb ‘08 405 Million Global Users
  • 5. How it all started
    • Founded in 2003
      • Founders: Niklas Zennström (Sweden), Janus Friis (Denmark)
      • Founding engineers: Jaan Tallinn, Ahti Heinla, Priit Kasesalu, Toivo Annus (Estonia)
      • Headquartered in Luxembourg, the largest office has always been in Estonia.
    • Financing
      • DraperCo seed round before product launch
      • Launch and initial pickup attracted top VC names: DFJ, Mangrove, Bessemer, Index
      • 2005 acquisition by eBay Inc
      • US$ ~.5B revenues and 2 years of profitability in 2008
  • 6. Global VS Local
    • Global mindset from day 1
      • First 6 employees from 4 nationalities
      • First 600 employees from ~40 nationalities
    • Leveraging local qualities
      • Estonia – small and efficienct
      • Europe – cultural diversity
  • 7. Impact to Estonia and Europe
    • Proof of potential and role model
      • European entrepreneurship elevated in last few years through Skype, Last.fm, MySQL...
    • Direct spillover effects
      • Experienced, networked and funded talent
    • Giving back to the society, governments: “What do we need to do to have 10 more Skypes?”
      • Education
      • Economic environment and regulation
  • 8. Thank you Skype:sten