Venture capitalists should focus on the Cloud
Cloud-based computing, software as a service (SaaS) and mobile are the next wave of technology, according to Jos White, one of the founders of MessageLabs, a cloud-based anti-virus and anti-spam company.
In an interview to The Wall Street Journal, Europe, Jos White- who now runs venture capital firm Notion White- encouraged venture capitalists to orient themselves along similar lines. However, the ride may not be easy given the nature of highly-divided, highly-fragmented European tech market.
MessageLabs founders faced tough market conditions when they launched their business in 2000. Operating from a converted barn in the heart of the British countryside in Gloucestershire, they tackled all sorts of business issues and survived the 2008 financial crisis.
White attributes the popularity of MessageLabs to the little tag they added to every email they processed. Although this concept was not unique the company perfected the art and ultimately got them a big customer base.
White also mentioned how they made $700 million when they sold their company to Symantec in 2008 and instead of retiring, invested the money to fund Norton in 2009.
White has worked in both Europe and the U.S and now invests primarily in SaaS related companies.
“It is a real cliché but in America if you fail they genuinely think you are therefore better prepared to succeed the next time and here if you fail they say you should go and get a proper job,” said White in a statement to The Wall Street Journal, Europe.
He continued: “I think in Europe, there are far too many [V.C.] teams that just have a finance background. That’s partly because there are not the serial entrepreneurs around for them to start being investors.”
“An investor, for me, is someone that is able to invest not only their money but also able to bring to the table relevant experience of the problems and the challenges and the opportunities you are facing.”