The decentralization of startup building

Building and investing in startups is rapidly proliferating to the many, instead of remaining the preserve of the few.

The old paradigm of physical centralization

Silicon Valley is the innovation bellwether of our time. The concentration of talent and capital — as well as a culture typified by speed and boldness — has created trillions of dollars of shareholder value and pushed the envelope of innovation.

The venture capitalists on Sand Hill Road have for decades dined on the fruits of funding entrepreneurs who travelled to the valley’s rich pastures or the alums of local academic institutions. There has always been a symbiotic relationship between entrepreneurs and investors, with often diverging goals.

Investors have historically required face time, something founders have been willing to do as the balance of power has predominantly resided with the cheque writers. This has led to the concentration and subsequent clustering of talent and startups. Whether building processors, web or mobile products; proliferation has been global whilst the innovative companies and venture investors remained local. In other geographies policymakers have worked to replicate this model of innovation and concentration, in my view wrongly.

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