Tuesday, October 28, 2003

Sony: Dot-Bomb Stock?

As Silicon Valley creakily starts to turn around and begin to innovate again, I have been required to fend off the doubts and dismissals of non-local naysayers who came late to the last tech party, and cannot believe that real value is created through the venture process. One of the favorite gambits is to point out the utter collapse of equity valuations even among the "real" companies in the tech sector -- those who had products and revenues, like Cisco or Sun or Inktomi.

This quote in today's NYT article on the Sony layoffs was thus a revelation: "Before today's announcement, Sony's stock closed at 3,960 yen, about 89 percent off its lifetime high of 33,900 yen in March 2000." Hmmm. 89 percent for a device company? 89 percent for a 50-year-old industrial bellwether? 89 percent for a company based 5000 miles from San Jose? Maybe, just maybe, the fault of the bubble was something called the stock market, not someplace called Silicon Valley.

Innovation is happening. These are good times for those who create.

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