Location: Frank Gehry’s meringue-shaped building, headquarters of IAC. (Photo courtesy of Andrew Baron, founder of Rocketboom).
Featured drink: Martinis.
Sponsors: The Corcoran Group, Greenhill SAVP
People: Founders of New York’s three latest exit success stories, Howard Lindzon of the then nine-month old Wallstrip (“a CBS company,” as Howard’s new business cards proudly proclaim), Laurel Touby, flush from selling MediaBistro to JupiterMedia, and Graham Hill of Discovery’s newest division, Brooklyn-based TreeHugger (below). Howard was in from Phoenix for his contractual week-a-month for CBS, but is finding time to make other investments.
Andrew Weinreich of MeetMoi (location-based dating) defended some well-located real estate near the bar while giving live demos. Emcee Dina Kaplan, formerly an Emmy winning TV reporter, now of Blip.TV eased through the room. Joel Smernoff of Paltalk concluded the evening by lounging on what many assumed was a cardboard couch but may have been art.
News: Sorry, boys, Wallstrip host Lindsay Campbell (not there, sadly) is taken. And, sorry, girls, so is Andrew Ross Sorkin of the New York Times, the brains behind DealBook, who just got married.
David Kidder from Clickable (funded by Fred Wilson and Brad Burnham at Union Square Ventures) is sharing 3,600 feet of Alley office space with the striking (and strikingly named) Ariane de Bonvoison of The First 30 Days; Stephen Paternot, formerly of theglobe.com, and Loriel Gabel of a stealth _____-killer named Ping (sorry, can’t say who they’re going to kill). In a throwback to the 90s, the folks at this mini-incubator have a Nerf hoops ball and net, but in a sign of different times, don’t use it. David also has an unopened iPhone that he bought to flip and is now wondering what to do with.
Caroline McCarthy of CNET had a photographer in tow and kindly provided the slide show below. Jim Lanzone of IAC’s Ask, in town from Oakland, suggested, politely, that recent pessimistic reports about the No. 4 search engine overlooked its impressive absolute growth. Peter Stern, of Zenbe, is building an email client with social-networking capabilities and says the alpha is a few weeks away (and apologizes for his crappy web site). Toby Daniels of Mint Digital reports that the UK social-media development and production firm Mint Digital is now alive and well in New York.
Founders Club, 8/7/07
Alexis Maybank, once of AOL and eBay, now of fashion-related e-commerce start-up First Look, took refuge from bankers by huddling with partner Kevin Ryan, formerly of DoubleClick, now of ShopWiki, First Look, and too many New York companies to list–including the one that owns this site. Daniel Klaus and Lucas Mann of Music Nation, along with Adam Granite of Epic Records, planted the digital music flag, and Adam explained that, contrary to popular conception, music labels do more than stamp disks. (Adam also explained that that AC/DC-Verizon deal was about media coverage, not music–unlike the labels, Verizon will spend $20 million on TV ads at the drop of a hat–and noted that “Back in Black” still sells 5,000-10,000 copies a week).
Roger Jehenson of red-hot UGENmedia was deep in conversation with Hilary Rowland of Hilary Magazine and other ventures (left). Hilary has been in the industry long enough to remember the annoying aspects of the Netscape beta (but not, oddly, Jason Calacanis, whose name was rolling off other people’s lips, despite his having defected to Los Angeles). Roger posited that Hilary was wearing MiuMiu, by Prada, which she confirmed, and she was wearing it well.
Spotted: Saul Hansell, technology editor of the New York Times, Jeff Jarvis of BuzzMachine, looking tall and dignified, and Esther Dyson of EDventure, looking not-so-tall but dignified and smart, and, as ever, flashing that radiant smile.
Plenty of money and deal folks, too, anchored by Alan Patricof of Greycroft, Anthony Noto of Goldman Sachs, and Ross Goldstein of DFJ Gotham. Saar Gur of Charles River Ventures’ Menlo Park office flew in, as did John DeLoche of new Sand Hill Road late-stage VC bridgescale. Jason Rapp, of IAC’s M&A, is not as busy as he once was, given the high prices in the sector, but was at home in the airy lobby. Brian Hirsch and Steve Brotman of Greenhill SAVP are glad to see New York tech/media finally getting some much-deserved attention.