The IP Networking industry has matured significantly from the go-go days of the 90’s. In that era, companies like Cisco, Wellfleet, Synoptics and Cabletron grabbed headlines the way Facebook and Twitter do today. In was an exciting time because the birth of the web created massive demand for communications networks that spoke IP – the lingua franca of the Internet.
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We are delighted to announce that Sami Lababidi has started to work part-time at Index Ventures as an Entrepreneur in Residence. Sami was absolutely pivotal in the success of Playfish but always extremely humble and generally left the promotional slots to be filled by Kristian Segerstråle and Sebastian De Halleux.
The 1770 and 80s were tumultuous and exciting times in America’s history. The “founding fathers” had catalyzed the nascent country into declaring its independence from England and architected the foundation for what was to become one of the most remarkable ascents of national power over the next 300+ years. These were heady days. But, the challenges facing the country in the late 1770s were also daunting. This was a start-up nation that had declared war against the Microsoft or Google of the time: the all-powerful nation of England.
Over the last 5 years many of us have made the 3.2 mile trip between Conduit St and Old St countless times. While we love to travel, as we’ve learned with our move to the US, there comes a time when you have to put down some roots.
So from today, the Index team in London will have two homes - one in Central London in Mayfair and one in East London near Silicon Roundabout.
Following hard on the heels of the Home Office's announcement relating to Entrepreneur visas, this week's budget had a distinctly enterprise supportive flavour.
I had very much hoped this would be the case and certainly the signals coming out of the Department for Business in the shape of Mark Prisk - who attended Seedcamp's SeedSummit for a full hour and half - the PM in his Tech City announcement and No10's enterprise task force including treasury officials, gave one hope.
Today we’re excited to announce that Index is opening its fourth office and that Danny and Mike will be going to the Bay Area to get it going.
For us this feels like a big move. But truth be told, although Index was born in Europe and has been based in Geneva, London and Jersey, we’ve always dedicated ourselves to backing the best entrepreneurs and helping them build the best companies on both sides of the Atlantic and this means our hearts have always been both here and in the US.
It seems that it remains fashionable to knock the London startup community - especially if you’re a former resident. There is no question that London (and Europe) has a long way to go. But we really believe London has a lot to offer as world-class design & marketing, access to global markets and significant capital become more and more of a competitive advantage for ambitious companies.
There is a tiny bit of PR wisdom to which I have tried to adhere most of my working life: "refrain from talking publicly about what you are going to do, talk about what you have done".
When we made the Index Seed announcement, it was clearly necessary to indicate what we were going to do. This was so that entrepreneurs and fellow travellers had some sense of our plans and could propose working together.
I’m delighted to announce that after long discussions and a lot of hard work on the part of Philips, our co-investors Union Square Ventures and Simon Levene and most specifically Peter Weijmarshausen and his team at Shapeways, that we have finalised our investment in the company. The New York Times coverage is here and Shapeways commentary here. What I thought might be interesting is to give some context on the company and why we are so excited about it.