The UK government hopes to create a technology haven in London's East End over the next few years. The Tech City project seeks to bring in some of the biggest tech companies, while helping to spawn a few home-grown titans as well.
But creating another Silicon Valley takes more than just a good plan and an endorsement from the mayor. Plenty of lessons, large and small, will have to be learned along the way.
This week, V3's Rosalie Marshall and Shaun Nichols take a look at some of the advice those building Tech City should look to glean from Silicon Valley, as well as a few pointers the Brits might be able to offer to the folks back in California.
What Tech City can learn from Silicon Valley
1. Don't be afraid of failing
Rosalie Marshall: The mantra of many entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley is 'fail fast'. There is never enough time so, if you are going to fail, do it quickly and move on to the next project.
Some of the biggest Silicon Valley entrepreneurs have spoken openly about their previous start-up failures, and that they were vital in helping them succeed in their succeeding ventures.
Take, for example, Twitter co-founder Evan Williams, who previously founded a podcasting platform called Odea which went under when Apple announced that the iTunes store would include such a service.
There is a perception in the US that people fail not because they are incapable, but because the world is competitive and innovation is complicated.
Meanwhile, there is a noticeable social stigma among European entrepreneurs about failure. Part of this may be the harsh bankruptcy legislation in the UK, which makes it difficult for entrepreneurs to close a business when it is failing, let alone start another. The US also has a more open culture where money can be discussed freely, and is more supportive of risk-taking than the UK.
Shaun Nichols: Everyone likes to think that their start-up is the next Twitter or Facebook, but the reality is that most start-ups won't make it. As with any other small business venture, the attrition rate is enormous and even the best-laid plans can go to waste owing to unforeseen events or just plain bad luck.
Founders have to accept that sometimes things just don't work out. When it becomes clear that there is no future for the company, founders need to pursue their exit strategy. Which brings up my next point: have a plan for when your business is not going to work out.
One advantage Silicon Valley has in this area is the business culture in northern California. Much of the area was founded during the gold rush of the 19th century, and there has always been a perception that this was a place you went to start anew and take a chance on striking it rich.
That can be a dangerous attitude at times, but it also helped to inspire some of the most successful entrepreneurs on the planet.
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