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@ EconSM: Angel Investor Conway On His Investments From Digg To Twitter

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imageLong-time angel investor Ron Conway (pictured, right), a special partner at Baselines Ventures, talked with founder Bambi Francisco at EconSM Thursday. Biggest regret? Passing over Most disappointing investment? Napster. Biggest surprise? Digg. Then there are a few others you might have heard of — Facebook, Twitter, Google.

Some more highlights from the conversation, after the jump.

Twitter: Conway isn’t concerned that Twitter isn’t making money yet. “If you look at some of the greatest companies that have ever come out of Silicon Valley — Google (NSDQ: GOOG) and Facebook — (these are) examples of companies that focused on critical mass before they worried about monetization.” He also does not think that Twitter will sell itself. “I think Twitter could be the next Facebook or Google in size — market size and potential. Why not stay an independent company?”

Digg: Conway thinks Digg is an IPO candidate, once the recession is over. “I think Digg is growing at a good enough rate,” he said.

IPO market: The IPO market is a year away from recovery, Conway said. “It would be great if six months from now we have some good M&A activity which then (leads) into an IPO market.” One sector he thinks will be active in M&A: media companies, since the Internet sector is “their future.”

Investment strategy: “I look at teams first and ideas second,” Conway says. “When an entrepreneur starts a company, the idea they have morphs radically.” He talked about meeting Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in Palo Alto five years ago. “He told me exactly where Facebook was going to be today and why he thought he was going to be able to get 250 million users. He was very confident. That’s what makes a great entrepreneur. They can explain to you why (their) company is going to be great even though they are plowing completely new ground.”

3 Responses to “@ EconSM: Angel Investor Conway On His Investments From Digg To Twitter”

  1. DCStrain

    – Why is there a zero chance of DIGG going public?
    – Do you know who the investors are who initiate these talking points?
    – Perhaps you have a good point that DIGG is a gimmick. Can you make that a bit clearer, and contrast DIGG against non-gimmick online businesses, and compare it to other online gimmick businesses? That would he a great help, because often they all seem like gimmicks when they start up.
    – Following my previous question: Why do gimmicks not go public? It would be a great help to me (and others) to understand your thinking — and more information would be helpful.
    If you don't want to post here, you can send me an email at: dennis(dot)strain(at)hotmail(dot)com

  2. jenkins

    There is ZERO chance of DIGG going public. This is talking points put out by investors to try and get DIGG purchased, and it smacks of desperation. DIGG is a gimmick. Gimmicks do not go public.

  3. Wonderful to hear from a solid (an understatement for the individual, but others who are solid would be good too) angel investor as opposed to the frantic ones. Think big is in. Interesting.