Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Immediately after the opening speeches on Tuesday, May 24th, I ran smack dab into John Perry Barlow and Juliette Powell. They were bubbly and while cynical about Sarkozy's speech, I think we all had Hope for what the rest of the conference could bring.

Shortly after, I ran into the famous Colette Ballou (Ballou PR) who graciously let me stand with her and watch the parade of fans come by to connect with this ultimate connector. She introduced me to Vincent Picou of SquareClock who explained his 3D realtime platform for personal and professional uses and Victoria Ransom, Wildfire Founder and CEO who's grown her business from 7 to 110 people in record time. Some gents gathered round our table for lunch were Ari Wegter of Mogul Associates, Andrew Scott of Urban Horizon, Frank Kelcz, VC/entrepreneur, Richard Titus of Octavian Ventures in the UK and Sokaratis Papfloraratos whose company TrustedPlaces just got acquired. I met Toussaint Roze of Notrefamille.com (which has now grown to 70 people) and has the enviable domain name of genealogie.com (take that geneology.com!) TechHub's Co-founder and CEO Elizabeth Varley was friendly while TechCrunch's Mike Butcher was busy looking at his phone the whole time we chatted.

Other folks spotted in our Internet Celebrity Bingo game were: LeWeb's Geraldine & Loïc Le Meur (who had their own group of fans), Personal Democracy Forum's Andrew Rasiej and the legendary Esther Dyson of EDventure. Gathered in their own little cluster were Ann Winblad (Hummer Winblad), Timothy Draper (Draper Fisher Juvertson) and the other money-holders.

Some new folks were:
  • Gilles Babinet who is the president of the Conseil Nationale Numerique, a new council (created by Sarkozy on April 27, 2011) to advise the government on digital subjects. This group does not have much support from the press and it seems it isn't destined to be an effective representation of actual digital enterprises and their needs.
  • Paddy Cogrove, a spritely modest wunderkin has created his buzz by creating a forum for just 150 founders of the companies like Skype, YouTube, Twitter, Wordpress and other leading influencers: F.ounders based in Dublin.
It was a whirlwind once again that I was used to, so I was sad to leave before the big party at Arc...but motherhood demands are more essential than even a hyped-up networking soiree...