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innovation DAILY

Here we highlight selected innovation related articles from around the world on a daily basis.  These articles related to innovation and funding for innovative companies, and best practices for innovation based economic development.

Last Thursday, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proposed a rule intended to preserve the ability of individuals to access all lawful content or software without interference by their Internet service provider (ISP). This principle often goes by the name "net neutrality," reflecting the idea that the ISP should be neutral as to the content people choose to access over their Internet connection.

As heads of an Internet company competing in today's marketplace, we fully support the FCC's proposal.

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$15 billion. That is the figure at the heart of a growing consensus of energy innovation experts, all calling for dramatically larger U.S. investment in clean energy research and development. As Congress debates energy and climate change legislation, a chorus of leading voices from business, policy and research communities have converged on a $15 billion increase in annual U.S. energy R&D budgets as a critical component of any final legislation.

Testifying before Congress this week, Google’s Director of Climate Change and Energy Initiatives stressed that it “is essential that Congress address” what he characterized as a “serious energy R&D short-fall” by including “$15 billion per year in federal energy R&D spending in final climate legislation.”

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Schumpter is known for the phrase "creative destruction," and he lived a life with lots of both. His mother "married up" to give him access to a better education (and higher social status) in Vienna, and the boy genius made his mark there -- before failing as finance minister (politics!) in the post WWI chaos.

His life took many turns and he worked in many places. In one terrible fortnight, his life turned upside down: just as he rushed to his mother's deathbed, his [second] wife died in childbirth -- as did the child. At that moment, Schumpter's goals (to be the world's greatest horseman, lover and economist) seemed trivial.

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Companies may have chopped capital investment, marketing and payrolls during the steep recession, but new studies suggest that research and development spending and patent activity held up remarkably well.

In its annual survey of the 1,000 largest corporate spenders on research and development, released this week, Booz & Company reported that their R&D budgets rose 5.7 percent in 2008. The rate of increase was less than in 2007, when R&D spending rose 10 percent. Still, it was an increase. And the consulting firm’s survey found that 70 percent of the companies plan to maintain or increase R&D outlays in 2009.

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The European Union has outlined its Internet innovation strategy. Viviane Reding, EU commissioner for information, society and media, says that European systems can become smarter and more efficient by harnessing the power of the Internet. The strategy, designed to boost European Internet infrastructures, will see the European Commission partner with national governments and IT companies to build up a 300 million euro (US$204 million) war chest to be used from 2011 through 2013, reports. This will be added to the 200 million euro (US$136 million) annual in IT support contributed by the Commission.

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While the mood in Silicon Valley may still be a far cry from the Gold Rush mentality that was common in the late 1990s, many investors there believe that the worst of the global recession has passed.

In its quarterly Silicon Valley Venture Capitalist Confidence Index, researchers from the University of San Francisco's business school found that of the 35 venture investors surveyed, most believe the economy is on the mend.

On a confidence scale of 1 to 5, with 5 indicating high confidence, investors have registered a 3.37 for the second fiscal quarter in a row, USF researchers said. The figure marks a continued rebound from a low of about 2.8 in the first quarter of 2009, but hovers lower than the 4.5 rating achieved before the recession, in the first quarter of 2007.

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S 1929 EAH

In the House of Representatives,

U. S., October 28, 2009.

Resolved, That the bill from the Senate (S. 1929) entitled ‘An Act to provide for an additional temporary extension of programs under the Small Business Act and the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, and for other purposes.’, do pass with the following


Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert:


(a) In General- Section 1 of the Act entitled ‘An Act to extend temporarily certain authorities of the Small Business Administration’, approved October 10, 2006 (Public Law 109-316; 120 Stat. 1742), as most recently amended by section 1 of Public Law 111-66, is amended by striking ‘October 31, 2009’ each place it appears and inserting ‘January 31, 2010’.

(b) Effective Date- The amendments made by subsection (a) shall take effect on October 30, 2009.




1st Session

S. 1929


CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The Charleston Area Alliance wants to spread this message throughout the local business community: a diverse work force can bolster your bottom line.

The Alliance has started an initiative called "Inclusion=Innovation." The program includes a series of roundtable seminars to encourage businesses to diversify their work force.
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The company's developers will work with Symbian, Android, and Chrome to optimize open source software with Qualcomm technology. In a move to bolster its mobile open source efforts, Qualcomm is establishing the Qualcomm Innovation Center (QulC), a separate wholly-owned subsidiary.

In a sign of the importance of the QulC, the company's board of directors named Rob Chandhok president of the innovation center. Chandhok is senior vice president of software strategy for Qualcomm CDMA Technologies.

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In the middle of a venture capital funding slump, you might think that early stage investments would be the hardest hit--VC dollars would be siphoned away from early-stage deals and poured into existing portfolio companies (conventionally Series B, C, D, etc. deals). In other words, money attracts money.

You'd have good reason for this belief. Overall venture capital investment funding levels are significantly lower on a year-over-year basis ($6.1B in Q3 2009 versus $7.2B in Q3 2008, according to ChubbyBrain). The absolute amount of money flowing to these early stage ventures is less than it has been.

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Seoul (Korea Newswire) October 27, 2009 11:47 AM -- Samsung Electronics, a leader in consumer electronics and information technology, and Handmark?, a world-leading creator and distributor of mobile applications and services, today announced the launch of a new Global Venture Fund to invest in companies and/or individuals with innovative, market-changing game ideas for next generation Samsung mobile phones. Companies and/or individuals selected will receive up to $250,000 each to fund the development of winning ideas.

The fund will be managed by Handmark out of its Kansas City and London offices in partnership with Samsung Electronics. The companies are searching for games that best showcase Samsung mobile phones and the advanced features they offer.Both current and new content ideas are encouraged, taking timing and cost into consideration.

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Bangalore: His batchmates will be busy wooing and being wooed by recruiters this placement season, but 26-year-old Mainak Chakraborty, who will graduate in 2010 from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (IIM-B), has chosen to sit out the season. Chakraborty wants to start a company that will set up recharge centres for electric vehicles. And he is hoping to incubate the company at the institute’s NS Raghavan Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning (NSRCEL).

Across Indian campuses, incubation centres such as NSRCEL are breeding entrepreneurs.

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WASHINGTON--(Business Wire)-- A study released today by the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) provides first-of-its-kind data on the importance of university/industry research and development partnerships to the U.S. economy. The study of university technology licensing from 1996 to 2007 shows a $187 billion dollar positive impact on the U.S. Gross National Product (GNP) and a $457 billion addition to gross industrial output, using very conservative models.

"It has long been believed that the Bayh-Dole Act, which permits and encourages industry to partner with research universities to turn federally-funded basic research into new and valuable products, is a critical factor in driving America`s innovation economy. Indeed, because of this inspired piece of legislation, the U.S. leads the world in commercializing university-based research to create new companies and good, high-paying jobs throughout the country," stated BIO President & CEO Jim Greenwood. "This new study provides the evidence to back up that belief."

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Angels still have wings, but they aren’t flying quite so high.

The rules of the game of angel investing have changed in the post-crisis world, Kermit Pattison writes in The New York Times. The average deal size shrank by 31 percent in the first half of this year, according to a recent study by the Center for Venture Research at the University of New Hampshire.

The study shows that total angel investments fell to $9.1 billion in the first half of 2009, a 27 percent decline from the same period last year, but the number of companies getting venture investments actually increased by 6 percent, to 24,500.

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The African Venture Capital Association (AVCA), a non-profit organization, hosted a press conference today at the Four Seasons - Nile Plaza, announcing the details of its forthcoming 8th Annual Conference, which will take place here in Cairo on 15th - 17th November at the Cairo Marriott hotel, under the slogan Africa: The Growth Continent for Private Equity "Investment Opportunities 2010 and Beyond".

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How to Generate Outsized Returns 2009-2019

Two key trends have dramatically altered the venture capital industry over the last three decades: the rise of larger fund sizes and the decline of Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) as an exit market for venture-backed companies. These trends have accelerated in the current decade and are fueling burgeoning interest in new paradigms in venture capital that better align the interests of investors and fund managers and that provide the potential for outsized investment returns for which the asset class is known.

This paper will suggest that fund size segmentation yields important insight into the debate about the viability of the venture model and that smaller funds with less than $250 million of committed capital are the answer to better alignment and outsized returns. Additionally, given the recent global financial turmoil, there is a unique opportunity to acquire unfunded secondary interests in these smaller fund managers which further improves the return opportunity by lowering the cost basis and shortening the J-curve.
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The Prime Minister of Malaysia, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, said the government will establish a National Innovation Center and a network of Centers of Innovation Excellence, as a step toward accelerating national innovation and commercialization activities. Najib, speaking this week at the fourth meeting of the National Innovation Council, also said that nanotechnology development would be given priority and be made one of the resources of the country's new economic model. Najib said "[N]anotechnology represents a new, advanced technological field at present and for the future. Thus, it is important for Malaysia to not be left behind in the field of nanotechnology and we have decided to give it importance." Innovation should be made the culture of the country, he added, through the country's education system. The article can be found online at the link below.

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Featured Guest: Vijay Govindarajan, director of the Center for Global Leadership at the Tuck School of Business and coauthor of the Harvard Business Review article How GE Is Disrupting Itself.

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Entrepreneurship is the leading engine of U.S. economic renewal, but can a small company grow into a "SuperCorp?"

Small business is by far the leading job creator, and entrepreneurship the leading engine of American economic renewal. As unemployment swells, small business prowess is needed more than ever. But can a small company be a SuperCorp, like progressive larger companies such as IBM and Procter & Gamble?

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Want more proof America's health care needs drastic improvement? Or that politics needs cleaning up? How about cutting spending?

Here it is: thanks to those and other short-comings, the U.S. is now just ninth in the world according to a new study of international prosperity.

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