PE Tech Report


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Early backer of Skype and leading venture capitalist, Gerard Lopez, predicts ‘The Next Big Thing’  

Gerard Lopez, a founding partner of The Genii Group and Mangrove Capital Partners, which was an early investor in Skype, delivered a talk at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum 2012 this week where he presented possible technological advancements that will change the world in the next decade and offered his expertise on how to successfully invest in ‘The Next Big Thing’.

In a presentation to a distinguished audience, Lopez, who is an owner of the Lotus F1TM Team, offered potential solutions on a wide range of subjects; from the issues caused as a result of rapid urbanisation, to how technology can be utilised for medical purposes and finally, how global food production techniques can make the necessary leap forward and cope with ever increasing demand.
Lopez, who through The Genii Group and Mangrove Capital Partners has been investing in Russia for the past decade, also set out his own blueprint for how investors can increase their own chance of discovering the next global phenomenon which has the potential to change the way we go about our everyday lives.
Lopez says: “’The Next Big Thing’ requires a thorough understanding of the audience, the subject and the timing for how fast a product takes to develop and can be delivered to market. However, is it is also essential for prospective venture capitalists to have a deep understanding of human beings.”
“There are very few things that touch us globally. Wealth, housing, mobility, communication and energy are areas which affect the population of every country. Therefore, ‘The Next Big Thing ‘needs to be universal and connect with a deep human need”.
“In the near future, we can expect to see cars that are leased on a contract, in a system similar to that of mobile phones; our deepening understanding of quantum physics to develop new processes of generating energy; the use of nanotechnology in medical science and ever more interaction with devices being used customised to the individual and used both for work and  personally.”


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