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Alex Payne on Silicon Valley: The Number of Companies Is 'Unsustainable'

At a conference on Tuesday, the programmer and investor outlined what is wrong with the valley's culture.
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According to programmer and investor Alex Payne, Silicon Valley has lost its focus. “It does seem like there is an unsustainable amount of companies,” Payne told VentureBeat in an interview. 

Yesterday, at VentureBeat’s DevBeat conference, Payne outlined all that he thinks is wrong with the Valley’s culture today.

Payne explained that companies are not as concerned with the longevity of products and technology as they should be, and have departed from business models of the past. He stressed that there need to be stronger relationships between companies and outside organizations such as the government, the military, the private sector and schools, reported VentureBeat. 

“What I’d really like to see is I guess a more open flow of ideas and capital between that public private academic partnership,” said Payne at the conference. “Universities are churning out people who start companies, but they show up to Stanford, find their co-founder, and drop out before they ever get a degree.”

Payne stressed that this departure from education--in additon to the nature of angel investments--has created major problems in the start-up world. He argued that today Silicon Valley is full of entrepreneurs who start companies just to start companies and make money. 

“We’re good at the building blocks, not as strong in laying the foundation for enduring opportunity,” Payne told VentureBeat. 

Last updated: Nov 13, 2013

ABIGAIL TRACY

Abigail Tracy is a staff reporter for Inc. magazine. Previously, she worked for Seattle Metropolitan magazine and Chicago magazine.




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