[iDC] Will you delete your Feedburner account?

Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten boris at fleck.com
Sat Jun 9 09:22:45 EDT 2007

Hello all,

Before I make my point first a short introduction. My name is Boris  
Veldhuijzen van Zanten. I'm an entrepreneur from Amsterdam, The  
Netherlands. My company Meganova works like an old-fashioned  
incubator but without much money.  I started several companies and  
sold 2 of them. I'm also the organizer of The Next Web Conference and  
a founder of Fleck.com.

I find it hard not to feel attacked when I read some of the comments  
on this list. I am one of those 'greedy' people who only wants to  
sell out. There is no need to apologize for this, I'm actually proud  
of being able to start innovative companies, grow them from nothing  
to something and then step aside when the moment (and the number) is  

One of my investors is a turn-around manager. If a big company is in  
trouble they invite him for a few years to make everything work  
again. This is what he does and he is good at it. He is not  
incompetent because he can't start a company and is good in one  
aspect of running a company; the near end of its life-cycle.

I'm the opposite. I come in when there is nothing there and then  
build something new. It is what I am good at and it is what I love  

Big companies are not good at innovation. They lack entrepreneurial  
spirit. (see this post on a story about that: http://blog.fleck.com/ 
Small entrepreneurs often lack scale and infrastructure. They are  
often frustrated about this and deny this fact which leads to  
seemingly innovative products we all love to hate.

So this is the game we all play: young entrepreneurs innovate and  
build companies. Big companies pay those entrepreneurs for the  
innovative work they did. And they pay well. If they wouldn't pay  
well it would be less interesting to start innovative businesses. And  
since most start-ups fail the reward must be big to attract enough  
entrepreneurs and make up for all the failed businesses.

Yes, I'm an entrepreneur.
Yes I'm in it for the money.
No, I'm not ashamed of that.

And to finally answer Geerts question:

On 9-jun-2007, at 11:24, Geert Lovink wrote:

> Selling out seems to be the default in the
> Web 2.0 area. The question is why.

Selling out has always been and will always be the default. It is  
just one of three possible exits for a start-up: bankruptcy, IPO or  

Craigslist is simply the exception that confirms the rule*.

So please DON'T delete your Feedburner account and just be happy that  
you witnessed a natural phenomena and congratulate the founders.  
Hopefully they will go and invent a new innovative company and sell  
that to another big company soon.


Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten
boris at bomega.com
http://www.bomega.com -> Blog

* = http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-exc1.htm

More information about the iDC mailing list