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Suing Gartner Won’t Solve Your Magic Quadrant Problems

On May 29th of this year ZL Technologies sued Gartner Inc. and one its analysts, Carolyn DiCenzo, for defamation, trade libel, false advertising and other charges over Gartner’s placement of ZL Technologies in the 2009 Email Archiving Magic Quadrant. In their original complaint ZL asked for over $1.696 billion in general and punitive damages, plus attorney’s fees and disgorgement of any of Gartner’s profits from the unlawful acts claimed by ZL Technologies. While I can empathize with the challenges of being placed in the ‘Niche Quadrant’, I also know from experience that strong execution can improve a firm’s Gartner rating over time. This post explores the details of ZL Technologies’ lawsuit as well as the grim reality of how their competitors have scaled their businesses to the point that ZL has little to no chance of ever achieving market leadership, except by suing Gartner.

[ More ] October 27th, 2009 | 4 Comments | Posted in Management, Product Management, Venture Capital |

Mary Meeker Internet Trends October 2009

Everyone is looking for the looking for the next big wave to ride in the tech marketplace. While social media has exploded in the past year it has not created a wave of hyper-valuable new companies aside from Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and Zynga. Morgan Stanley’s Mary Meeker thinks the next big wave will be Mobile Internet. Mary details her thinking in her Web 2.0 Summit presentation “Economy & Internet Trends” As TechCrunch’s MG Siegler noted “She thinks the mobile web will be 10 times as big as the more traditional desktop Internet, and that it will grow much faster.” The entire presentation is embedded in the post, along with a copy of the presentation she developed in March 2009 that described the background of the current recession along with her perception of the emerging Internet and Social Media opportunities.

Putting Recent IPO / M&A Hype in Perspective

In the past two weeks there has been a huge buzz about how some recent IPOs and M&A deals signals a return to the good times of great technology company exits. Thanks to some decent stats from the National Venture Capital Association and Thomson Reuters, the reality of the situation is pretty grim. Most tech companies stand a better chance of winning the Lotto than getting a 10x return exit. This post takes a look at the numbers as well as examining how minority investments may be the best short term exit alternative for tech companies.

Will Twitter Dis-intermediate Investment Bankers?

It was bound to happen sooner or later. Twitter is now being credited with playing an important role in two companies selling themselves. This post reviews the recent sales of Tinkoff Restaurants and JobVent, both of which marketed themselves for sale via Twitter.

[ More ] October 5th, 2009 | 1 Comment | Posted in Management, Private Equity, Social Media, Venture Capital |

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