In Berlin, Startups Steer Clear of Facebook – Businessweek

If Ciarán O’Leary worked for Facebook or Google, he says he’d spend sleepless nights worrying about the downsides of trying to be everything to everyone. “They want to do it all and be the Internet—e-mail, sharing files, social networking, map systems, whatever,” he says. “I think we’re seeing this sort of counter trend of people getting fed up with having one company for everything.”

O’Leary is a partner at Earlybird Venture Capital, a Berlin-based firm that just raised $100 million toward a $200 million fund to invest in Internet startups. The money is a boon for the German city’s vibrant but underfunded startup scene. It’s also good for companies focused on one, and only one, area of specialization. “The Googles and Facebooks, while they’re still very innovative, they’ve reached a size where they can’t really concentrate on narrow use applications,” says O’Leary. “For me, it’s all about vertical, really crisp use cases.”

Specializing, O’Leary argues, lets companies focus on quality. “Compare Spotify and iTunes,” he says. “On iTunes you can download games, download apps, do whatever, but Spotify is just so much better for listening to music.” He predicts that people will increasingly migrate away from the bigger, clumsier Internet companies to use a smattering of superior applications such as Spotify. The way he sees it, iPhone home screens have room to house 20 such handpicked applications. “What we’re looking for are services that have the potential to get that prime real estate on your phone,” he says.

via In Berlin, Startups Steer Clear of Facebook – Businessweek.

Strange Random Startup Quote:

“Timing, perseverance, and ten years of trying will eventually make you look like an overnight success.” – Biz Stone, co-founder, Twitter

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Posted on April 9, 2012, in Article and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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