Minibar tonight (2 Mar)

Tonights Minibar seemed less full for some reason albeit 132 folk were signed up on Meetup. Demos tonight.

From a selfish perspective Minibar is a clear second to Opencoffee because
- too many geeks pushing tech solutions & not businesses at minibar
- its simply too dark & noisy (loud DJ) to network
- people don't go to network
- tech is the focus, not entrepreneurship

Anyway, the usual format of demos operated with the following companies presenting tonight.:

- its provides a platform to provide finance to new bands to help launch themselves & produce their first album
- they advance that labels are risk averse & talent struggles to be heard. Yet some consumers like to discover stuff.
- Sellaband enables passionate "believers" to buy fractions in bands they like/discover up to a max of $50k to fund their recordings. No commitment applies on either side until $50k is reached and then both sides are locked in. Sellaband the organises studio time & recordings.
- The believer's investment buys firstly albums ($10 per unit) which they get delivered - god forbid you invest $1k & end up with loads of CDs..
- The music is then given away by Sellaband on the site to drive traffic & generate ad revenues which is shared between investors & the band.
- So far 2 artists raised have raised the $50k, with 400k of pledges. 7500 investors have signed up & 2500 artists. Page views of several hundred thousand have resulted.
- artists get their own promo page with embedded player. Consumers hear music for free but can choose to invest.
- However, here's were the deal goes sour. Investors only get rights to the ad revenues on sellaband. Ooops. So my investment gets them the necessary push and they go onto greatness - sorry, you get nothing!

Apologies if I misunderstood the model (I did check with those around me) but what a lousy deal. If my money promotes a band & helps them get big, I want a share to payoff all of the flops I backed.

It's a non profit consortium dedicated to promoting open source and minising risk of using open source.

"Smart personal for smart people". Translated it sounded like a social network site targeted at people searching for casual sex. Can't deny there's probably a market.

Developed by one of the Barcamplondon organisers, Jason, they offer a search engine that geographically divides up search results but their USP is that results are returned as images of the web pages. Search is driven by yahoo results. Whilst some searches might benefit from visuals, the selection seemed to push people towards the best visually stunning site. Their pitch lacked clarity, especially as the first two minutes of five were devoted to talking about their testimonials on other sites.

Trusted Places
Still flush from their £500k of funding this week, Sokratis and Walid introduced their site. Their sites provides a trust network for finding recommendations of places to go (bars, restaurants mainly). Using the "neighbour" concept, Trusted Places finds recommendations from people with similar profiles (profile data driven by upfront questionnaire). This isn't trust per se since it actually uses Amazon-like filtering to say people like you, like this. This is different from people whom you know giving you recommendations.

Trusted places look to make money from advertising & sponsorship.

It was great to see Helen Keegan (Swedish Beers & beepmarketing) and Deirdre Molloy (Chinwag) for a long chat. I also saw/spoke with
- Ian Delaney who replaced Deirdre as NMK editor
- Sophie Coudray of Antersite
- Angel at Inkpak
- Jemima of the Guardian Unlimited
- Simon of Bellhope
- Caz of

It was also good to see one of the co-founders of, Martin, coming along.

Well done to Christian for his continued efforts in making this event happen.

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posted by John Wilson @ 10:55 PM Permanent Link newsvine reddit


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At 8:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


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At 9:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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