Business beehive can help startups

June 5, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
In Silicon Valley, the competition to innovate is intense. The pressure can be daunting, but now there's a new way for start-ups to get rolling and it is called "A beehive".

Yahoo and Hewlett Packard started in Silicon Valley, years ago. Now, venture capitalists looking for the next big thing can go to Plug And Play.

It's a sort of co - op for startups where paying rent will get an entrepreneur office space, instant technical infrastructure, and monthly meetings with potential investors.

"So the infrastructure takes three to six months for people to finalize and get going. That's one part, but the huge aspect like I said, is getting plugged in, networking with the right individuals and getting going right off the bat," said Shobeir Shobeiri, from Plug And Play.

Access to Plug And Play directors' rolodex doesn't come cheap. Rent for one of these spots costs up to $5,000 a month.

"We need money and we need a good team," said Andrew Greenstein, Bo Jam co-founder.

Greenstein moved in two weeks ago. Everything he's spending to launch Bo Jam, an online music collaboration program, is coming out of his own pocket. He's hoping the investment in Plug And Play pays off.

"The location is good and it provides a sense of respectability to be based out of Palo Alto and Silicon Valley," said Greenstein.

Plug And Play developers consider these offices technology campuses and themselves guidance counselors for the college-age entrepreneurs they expect to fill these offices.

"I think for young entrepreneurs this can be very comfortable because it's kind of like living in a dormitory, but instead of sleeping there, you're working there," said Larry Magid, a tech analyst.

Magid thinks the concept of having dozens of start ups under one roof , is a good one. Even though Plug And Play has two other locations in the Bay Area, his concern is the company's stability in this down economy.

"Any venture, and new venture in concept is subject to fail and I would hate to be one of their tenants if these guys went out of business. It's may not likely, but it's certainly possible," said Magid.

This 25-year-old hope the odds are in his favor. Regardless, he's returning to law school in the fall.

PlugAndPlayTechCenter.com


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