THE ECONOMICS OF DREAMS

Two Questions for the Edge Community
Joseph "Yossi" Vardi [3.14.01]
Topic:

I wanted to use the opportunity of my Digerati Dinner on February 22, 2001 to ask the guests, a group that included many of the movers and shakers of the digital revolution, to comment on the state of the Digital revolution. At every place setting as a brief questionnaire, leading off, in bold type, with the following:

"What's Next?"

As I should have suspected, people were too excited by being in each other's presence to respond. But just as I was about to give up hope, Israeii investor Joseph "Yossi" approached.

"Mr. Brockman," he said in a thick accent. "Being an Israeli, I must respond to your question not with an answer but with two more questions, which I would like to adress to your faithful readers. First: Where are we right now on the enclosed chart (see "The Economics of Dreams" below). Second: How long will it be until the stock market begins to go up?"

I had met Yossi during the "Cool People in the Hot Desert" trip sponsored by our mutual friend, the Bavarian media mogul Hubert Burda. At the time of my visit, a year had passed since he had sold the extremely popular Internet communication program ICQ to AOL for a reported $400 million. When the deal had been announced, the Israeli press and technology sector were incredulous that the 19-month old company run by Yossi with its founders, three college-aged men including his son, with a tiny revenue stream and no profits, could be worth $400 million. The news created a stampede, the result of which is that greater Tel Aviv now rivals Munich in technology startups after Silicon Valley and New York City. When I landed in Tel Aviv, a year had passed since the deal and the press perception was different: "What kind of schmuck sells out early for $400 million when the company could easily be sold today for $4 billion!!


THE ECONOMICS OF DREAMS
Two Questions for the Edge Community
by Joseph "Yossi" Vardi

1. Where are we right now on the map?

2. How long will it be until the stock market begins to go up?

Based on input from different sources, including Morgan Stanley and others.