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VC market opening up to social networking, cloud security

Marc Ferranti | June 21, 2010
The US and Europe money trail leads to cloud and Internet investments

"One macro trend is that time spent on social-networking sites will continue to grow," Advanced Technology Ventures' Wiberg said.

The U.S. market tends to drive similar trends in Europe. The first European countries to adopt new trends are usually Germany and France, analysts say.

"I am noticing that a lot of exciting stuff is happening in Germany. There are a lot of companies that are trying to position themselves as the leading vendor in Europe, in their own, often, small niche," said Fredrik Sellgren, partner at Result, a company that helps entrepreneurs bring their idea to new markets.

"Video, mobility and social media is taking off everywhere," Sellgren said. Video has developed to the point where marketing money has started to flow, according to Sellgren. The same is not as true when it comes to mobile platforms, he said.

Big economies in the Scandinavian market and the rest of Europe then follow suit, though a debt crisis in Greece, Portugal and other southern European countries has shaken financial markets locally.

Meanwhile, in March alone there were six widely watched tech IPOs in the U.S., indicating emerging markets and attention to demographics -- one of the deals involved Financial Engines, an Internet retirement planning site.

More money is expected to flow from venture capitalists as they see that exit strategies -- such as IPOs, that essentially allow them to cash out and, potentially, reap profit -- are starting to present themselves, PricewaterhouseCoopers' Lefteroff noted.


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