Fred Wilson at LeWeb 2013

Really enjoyed Fred Wilson’s talk from LeWeb. He covers a few big macro trends that USV is paying attention to including:

  • Transition from bureaucratic hierarchies to technology driven networks (newspaper to Twitter, big media to YouTube, radio/music industry to SoundCloud)
  • Unbundling (now happening to industries such as banking, education, research and entertainment)
  • Everyone is a node on the network because of the smartphone (network allows new applications like Uber, Venmo, Tinder, etc.)

I especially like their philosophy of investing from a behavioral and societal point of view rather than strictly on technology. For anyone in ad land, especially you planners and strategists, that’s clearly good old consumer insight. Great products, more often than not, lean into what customers are already doing / thinking.

The trick with this technology stuff is to understand emerging platforms / technologies / etc so that you can infer how current consumer behaviors could potentially change based on what the new technologies enable people to do.

Sounds like that’s exactly where USV is focusing.