The interview mostly touched on the LinkedIn IPO, mostly because it’s the topic du jour and because Breyer wouldn’t say anything about Facebook and Groupon.
It seems Breyer isn’t a fan of LinkedIn’s IPO.
Here’s what he said (paraphrasing with commentary in parentheses):
- LinkedIn’s rumoured $3 billion valuation is “reasonably high” and the company will probably “grow into it”. (in other words, LinkedIn isn’t worth that much yet.)
- If it was up to him, LinkedIn would NOT be going public today. He would keep the company private for as long as possible.
That actually seems pretty harsh from someone who is usually a big booster of social as a phenomenon and a money-maker. It’s also interesting that he likes it when startups stay private for as long as possible, given that both Groupon and Facebook are thought to be planning IPOs relatively soon.
He also said he wants to invest in social commerce.
Also weird: Breyer seemed really twitchy in the interview. The sun is really bright in Davos this morning and it was in his face, so maybe that was just the reason.