A few minutes ago, at tonight’s PandoMonthly in New York, Sarah Lacy asked Spark Capital’s Bijan Sabet how he felt about New York’s relative lack of success in building “the new Facebook,” along with the increasing success of non-entirely-tech companies like Bonobos, Birchbox and Warby Parker….
If you look at New York now, what’s the most heavily valued what is raising the most money is like ZocDoc, Oscar Health, Flat Iron School and then Bonobos, BirchBox, Warby [Parker]… companies that are really shopping, despite being ecommerce… not really being ecommerce first.
It feels to a lot of people like that feeling that New York was going to build real Silicon Valley style [consumer] technology companies didn’t work. I don’t mean that in a pejorative way because I think healthcare, retail [etc] are huge parts of the economy. Is New York playing more to it’s strengths now?
Sabet’s response? He didn’t agree with the premise. Rather, he argued, New York just isn’t as mature a market as Silicon Valley…
I don’t agree. New York has done a really good job but… it’s just earlier. In the life cycle of these things it’s just a younger market. Now we have Tumblr at $1.1bn, Etsy’s a meaningful company. You’ve got AppNexus, you have a bunch of companies. We had a couple of big exits beyond Tumblr… like Admeld. I just think this is the first generation of real companies creating real value with real revenue…. real fundamental user bases that are not bought like in the web 1.0 days. This market can build on that.
[photo by Brandon Bakus for Pando]