There’s a real buzz beginning in the London start-up space, I’m not sure if there is elsewhere around the UK? In the last few weeks there have been some really good events and meetings. I was at Mashup, Beers & Innovation but sadly missed the most recent Geek Dinner and Ruby on Rails conference/party.
Last night was the Internet Peeps dinner organised by Robert Loch at the Adam Street club.
The room was full of UK entrepreneurs and VC’s getting together to share ideas, to make new connections and to exchange war stories about raising money, finding good developers and how they got started.
From the QnA session, the one thing I took away was the fact that VC’s are struggling to find start-ups to invest in. The point being that start-ups no longer need to raise the £1m+ previously needed in the web 1.0 period to get an idea up and running. Now £20-£40k gets you on the web and with actual subscribers/users to prove the model. In some cases the start-up can actually be profitable before they need to raise new growth capital. The thing that is still missing is the angel investment capital which Philip Wilkinson describes as the equity gap.
The rest of the evening I spent talking to some very interesting people about their companies: Michael Birch (CEO Bebo), Cary Marsh (CEO MyDeo), Philip Wilkinson (CrowdStorm) Alex Tew (Million Dollar Page) Matt Ogle (Last.fm), Walhid Al Saqqaf and Sokratis Papafloratos (Trusted Places) Ed Freyfogle (Nestoria), Peter Nixey (WebKitchen), Valerie Taylor (Ariadne Capital) Nic Brisbourne (Esprit Capital) and Paul Birch (co-minded) to name but a few. Sadly I didn’t get to talk to Robert’s Brazilian friends ;-)
Robert also runs a number of smaller Internet Dinners regularly. The next dinner dates are: Tuesday 10th, Wednesday 11th, Thursday 12th, Tuesday 17th, Tuesday 24th and Thursday 26th of October.
The format is – meet for drinks at 6.30pm followed at 7pm by chaired roundtable discussion over a three course dinner with wine and coffee for 8-12 people. The price is £50 for members and their guests, £75 for non-members.
Hopefully it will be as good if not better than this one!