entrepreneurship, Innovation unConference, unConference

Jamie Goldstein on Boston as a Tech Hub, the unCon, and Solving Tough Issues

Jamie, what makes you
excited about Boston as a technology innovation hub?
got the greatest entrepreneurs in the world here. They are focused on solving
important problems. They’re educated, they’re hard working, they’re tenacious
and they’re trying to make a difference in the world and those are exactly the
entrepreneurs you want to partner with.
Tell us about your
involvement in the MassTLC unConference
am excited to be part of this year’s MassTLC unConference because I believe
that it attracts the entrepreneurs who matter. 
I think that there are two types of entrepreneurs: those that want to
make a lot of money quickly and make themselves famous in the process, and
those that actually want to make a lasting imprint. We have a lot of
entrepreneurs here that want to make a lasting imprint, with higher ambition,
goals and vision, and I know I will be meeting some of them at the unConference.
What are you hoping to
share at the unConference?
excited to meet a lot of new entrepreneurs that are passionate about their
ideas and brainstorming with them about ways to make these ideas successful.
I’ve been helping entrepreneurs for over 16 years now – I’ve seen lots of
companies succeed and fail. The business I am in is very much a pattern-recognition
business – we see things that work and we come across things that don’t work,
so I’m excited to share those insights and learnings with the entrepreneurs attending
the unConference, or any entrepreneur who is interested to hear them.
You are focused on
companies solving the tough issues – infrastructure and communications networks
challenges.  Can you tell us more about
where these markets?
most of my work at North Bridge is concentrated in communications and
infrastructure and for a good reason –Boston has for a long time been a hotbed
of breakthrough innovations in these areas that have had a ripple effect
throughout the world.  Mobile and cloud
are two areas for the Boston ecosystem that will continue to grow in 2013 –
both at the infrastructure level and at the applications and services level that
mobile and cloud enable. Most of our investments have some level of cloud
computing built into their models – either leveraging cloud computing or
enabling cloud computing. Those range from switching and routing companies,
storage, network services companies, and software infrastructure businesses.  A couple of New England companies that deserve
a shout-out include Plexxi, which is a new
switching company targeted at the largest data centers and cloud computing
environments. Actifio is another, which is a storage company,
and Acquia, which is a platform as a service for Drupal.
What should we expect in
the infrastructure markets and cloud markets in Boston in 2013?
prediction is that New England companies are going to continue to do extremely
well, because they are leveraging the growth of cloud computing and cloud
infrastructure. I think we are going to see record growth for the New England
companies servicing this area. The growth will come from a combination of big
enterprises big Internet companies, and cloud providers, all of whom are
building large data centers.
Can you share with us what’s
makes companies successful and why some of them fail?
think many companies fail because they’re solving today’s problem instead of
trying to solve a problem that may emerge two or three years from now. You have
to work very hard to solve such problems. If you’re smart enough to see where
the market is going a few years out and you start investing now in a problem
that is difficult to solve, you willchave that space to yourself. Many
companies fail because they don’t have a grand enough plan and they have an
undifferentiated approach to solving tactical, small problems.
converse of that is that companies that have a vision, and communicate that
vision to the world of are the ones who succeed and who set the conversation
agenda of tomorrow. They have the benefit of describing the world as they want
it to be and that’s the way to dominate a new category.
You are the President of the
New England Venter Capital Association. How can entrepreneurs get involved?
NewEnglandVC.org should be one the stops
on their entrepreneurial journey. The website has an up-to-date events section
listing the various seminars and opportunities for entrepreneurs.  We just announced a new internship jobs
initiative with BostInno – www.bostInno.com/internshipsabout. Part of our
mission is to carry out initiatives that make Boston the best place in the
country to start a company. We’re reaching out to young people while they’re
still in college and getting them involved in local startups. If there are any
entrepreneurs out there that need an intern for the summer, they should log on
and submit their internship opportunity.
Goldstein is a Partner at North Bridge Venture Partners investing mainly in
communications and infrastructure but as in his earlier entrepreneurial career,
he is willing to reach into various sectors to grab the intriguing idea. When
the founding North Bridge team recruited Jamie Goldstein in 1998, he became the
first of a new generation of investors at the company. Jamie’s venture
interests are diverse: data center infrastructure, wired and wireless
communications technologies and advanced materials. Jamie is President of the
Board of the New England Venture Capital Association. He is actively involved
in the MIT Deshpande Center for Innovation, serves as a judge for the MIT 100K
Business Plan Contest, and a Trustee of the MATCH School, a Boston-area Charter

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