Lessons of the Last Bubble

July 20, 2007   

I may be a little late in reading this article, but I just put down Lessons of the Last Bubble (reg. req.) as published in the Spring 2007 issue of Strategy + Business. The article's thesis is revealed in its subtitle -- "Smaller bet can make the next technological boom more productive and enduring." -- but it's definitely worth an entire read-through for anyone interested in the VC-meets-web start-ups space. The article has a lot of great anecdotes, facts, and figures, culminating in this observation:

During the dot-com bubble, large sums of money went toward big bets on first movers intent on getting big fast. Observing some big successes in businesses with network effects or scale economies, investors concluded that all of the swans were white. In reality there were also black swans — and a fair number of geese, ducks, and egrets as well. The market results — and societal results — would have been better had the capital been more patient and had it gone into a more diverse range of exploratory investments.

Go read the rest!

Lastly, I would also point out that this article favors models such as YCombinator, CRV's Quick Start, and Feld's Tech Stars.

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