Microsoft and Startups: A Love Story

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Prepared for and presented at the Micrsoft Softserve executive retreat in Blaine, Wa.

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Microsoft and Startups: A Love Story

  1. 1. Microsoft and Startups <ul><li>A love story </li></ul>
  2. 3. <ul><li>Microsoft has long been a developer </li></ul><ul><li>focused company – but they need to adapt </li></ul><ul><li>to accommodate developers that don’t want </li></ul><ul><li>to make $1m year businesses, but want to </li></ul><ul><li>make $100m year products. </li></ul>
  3. 4. Microsoft has a bad reputation for competing with companies that are building on their platform.  I think this is one reason so many startups have moved away from them, and I think this should be near their #1 focus in fostering new Microsoft based startups.
  4. 5. For a startup, working with Microsoft is a full-time job for someone, essentially,10% of the company's resources. Our experience was extremely frustrating, with lots of last minute &quot;please come to Redmond tomorrow&quot; to &quot;that person is climbing Everest so our discussions will be on hold for a month”. We spent that cost and we got burned and I'll never do it again.
  5. 6. Most of their presentations to startups are about how to navigate your way around Microsoft to do a partnership deal (who to talk to, what the steps are, etc.). We’d rather they talk about what they’re interested in, where they are spending R&D, their product roadmap, etc.
  6. 7. Microsoft invited us to their Worldwide Partner Conference and introduced us to all of their partners and resellers.  I was blown away. These people are such loyalists, they even use Windows mobile!
  7. 8. We need competition in the contextual and display ad marketplace!  I want Google to beg for my high-quality impressions and the only way for this to happen is for there to be another good ad-network.
  8. 9. It takes a huge potential ($1b) uplift in revenue for a potential partnership / acquisition to make a difference to Microsoft’s bottom line. I’m sure they miss many smaller companies with promise who find it easier to work with Google to explore ideas.
  9. 11. Excite.com took $3,000,000 to get from idea to launch. JotSpot took $100,000. Joe Kraus, Circa 2005
  10. 13. Change the world by spreading the knowledge of innovators
  11. 15. O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures is in the business of funding disruptors, innovators, and hackers of the status quo.
  12. 17. A person has information shadows in a host of emails, instant messages, phone calls, tweets, blog postings, photographs, videos, and government documents.
  13. 23. Operations Are The New Secret Sauce Inspired by a conversation with Debra Chrapaty
  14. 30. If we are going to solve the world’s most pressing problems, we must put the power of the web to work – its technologies, its business models, and perhaps most importantly, its philosophies of openness, collective intelligence, and transparency.
  15. 36. The “subsystems” of the emerging internet operating system are increasingly data subsystems: location, identity (of people, products, and places), and the meaning that tie them together. This leads to new levers of competitive advantage: Data is the “Intel Inside” of the next generation of computer applications.
  16. 42. Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint hearted - for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things .
  17. 47. Thank You [email_address] bryce.vc @bryce

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