Now we're on to a money conversation - Greg Reinacker and three VC guys - Seth Levine and Richard Fishman, and Dan Flatley (sp?) to talk about where the money might go in the syndication space. Greg is moderating the panel. Two of them are backing Newsgator, which is amusing. Richard's company is called "RSS Investors", which was certainly forward marketing into the space. They received over 600 business plans in short order, and only something like 2% had a revenue model. They've invested in Attensa and Edgeio. They are looking in to two more RSS oriented plays in the next little while.
Seth Levine is another investor in Newsgator, from Mobius. They also have money in Technorati, Feedburner, and a few others. Dan Flatley's firm is also a Newsgator investor, and in digital media in general. RSS is one of the things they follow.
So starting with a question from Greg: Where do the VC's here think the syndication space is going, and how does the entry of big firms like MS and Yahoo affect it? Dan thinks that the field is validated, and that big firms and government organizations will be moving into it. Seth agrees. He's looking beyond blogs (etc), and sees syndication technology moving across many notification domains. RSS will be an enabling technology. We have consensus - Richard agrees as well. He also sees RSS moving into new domains as a connecting technology.
Heh - Seth says that many of the business plans out there seem to involve getting sold to (insert big company here). Question along those lines to Richard - what common themes (if any) amongst the "losers". He immediately rejects any plans that involve "revenue will come later".
I asked about something Avi mentioned in discussing bootstrapping DabbleDB - he counselled avoiding VC money. The panel here said sure, on the technology side, you can do that a lot more easily than you ever could before. Depending on your target market though, it may be very important. If you are going after the enterprise, for instance, you'll need those expensive sales/marketing folks - and thus, will need cash.