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Do You Really Need Carriers in your Business Plan?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007
12:00 PM - 02:00 PM
Orrick Law Offices - Olympic room
1000 Marsh Road
Menlo Park, CA 94025-1015


For years, the mobile phone company has been the gatekeeper of the mobile ecosystem. The carrier has had the ability to control entry into the value chain, erect walled gardens, and make or break start-ups and other solution providers. The value chain used to be simple: chip vendor, device maker, carrier, and subscriber. Since the carrier was the point of collection for all the money, that's where the power consolidated. But there are tectonic shifts taking place in the ecosystem this year, and

For years, the mobile phone company has been the gatekeeper of the mobile ecosystem. The carrier has had the ability to control entry into the value chain, erect walled gardens, and make or break start-ups and other solution providers. The value chain used to be simple: chip vendor, device maker, carrier, and subscriber. Since the carrier was the point of collection for all the money, that's where the power consolidated. But there are tectonic shifts taking place in the ecosystem this year, and an increased energy towards going around the carriers. VCs, annoyed by late exits from investments that work through carriers, are putting millions behind new startups specifically because they work around the carriers. What is the reality behind off-portal, D2C, open platforms, and the end of the walled garden? How relevant are carriers today, in a few years, and in the long-term? This roundtable asks the VCs, the content companies, and the carriers, and gets it all out in the open. ON THE ROUNDTABLE: Thomas Jakob - Head of Innovation, Swisscom Roland Van der Meer - Partner, ComVentures David Ladd - Managing Director, Mayfield Fund Bill Tam - CEO, EQO Hemendra Godbole - Co-Founder, Numbr Peter Howley - Chairman, Success Generation Systems

 

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