In case you have not been following, TechCrunch Disrupt SF has been going on in San Francisco. It has become a pretty heavy cash drain on startups if they want to attend. See Jason Calacanis‘s tweet storm about that
Anyways, I wanted to draw your attention to two very interesting talks, the first by Mark Cuban, the owner of Dallas Mavericks Basketball team where he said “F#$k you’all in Silicon Valley, I want to kick your ass“. His argument was that, attracting talented people to work with his startups in Dallas has not been hard and he sees it as a Startup Arbitrage, ie. he is able to build companies for a lower cost and sell them into Silicon Valley. I think he is right, if he is able to do that in Dallas I believe every startup community in the world should be able to that as well. BTW, yours truly did just that. He also mentioned in his talk that valuations in the valley are crazy, and why he believes building successful sustainable businesses should be the real driver and how he bets on those teams that do that.
The second talk was by Peter Thiel, again a contrarian to the core. His argument more or less aligns with Mark Cuban but Peter is in the valley and believes that Silicon Valley is going to become the center of the US economy in the next decade. He was short New York and Long Silicon Valley, spoken like a true Hedge Fund manager. Here is the article by TechCrunch with links to the video interview. Peter Thiel is probably one of the really smart venture investors out there and he is making some bold calls and contrarian is too short a word to describe his thesis on many things. Of course it helps to have a track record like his.
I kind of think it sucks that TechCrunch does not allow you to embed the videos through WordPress.com. I guess everyone wants to keep their content, we know that strategy fails. I wish they would make it easy for bloggers and everyone to share content just like links. Oh, well, one thing at a time. TechCrunch did get acquired by AOL, old habits die hard I guess.