The Brits who went to Silicon Valley

I’ve been following the progress of a group of 20 British tech startups who have been in Silicon Valley this past week as part of Web Mission 2008.

The trip – sponsored by HSBC Bank, UK Trade and Investment, TechCrunch, BT and Heller Ehrman Venture Law Group – was designed to showcase innovative UK web talent, seek meaningful assistance for companies ready for expansion, and provide a platform for those involved to gain valuable media and business exposure.

Much of what I’ve been reading has been the occasional reports on TechCrunch UK and TechCrunch by Mike Butcher.

It would have been great to have seen more conversational commentary from some of those startups directly. What they thought, what they were hoping for, what they were experiencing. Web Mission 2008 has a blog but without posts since mid March.

Still, it’s really good to see that these 20 representatives of some of the great tech thinking and development going on in the UK were able to make a pretty good showing in the US.

In a wrap-up post yesterday, Mike Butcher believes the 20 got three primary things out of the trip:

[…] Firstly they got to network with each other, away from the distractions of their businesses and the UK, and create a support network for each other. Designers and developers have had support networks like this for many years. Startups CEOs, especially in Britain rarely experience it.

Secondly, they were able to network with companies here in a co-ordinated way that would never have happened if they’d come on their own.

Lastly, the experience and insight they had into a centre of astounding innovation and technology culture here in California must have been worthwhile. Certainly everyone I have spoken to says Web Mission was a resounding success for all involved. Now it remains for us to communicate to those of you back in the UK the many useful things that have been gleaned from this trip.

Look forward to hearing more, Mike.

And good luck, chaps!

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

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