I’m sitting in San Francisco airport awaiting my flight back to London so I’ve just got time to crank one last Silicon Valley trek blog post out.
Friday morning we visited Kiva. I had heard of them as we have a couple of classmates that have worked with them, but I didn’t really know what they had done there. I knew it had something to do with microloans, but not much more than that.
It turned out to be a really interesting meeting. It was a refreshingly honest meeting (no “PR friendly” soundbites etc.) discussing exactly how Kiva works and where it is going. The Kiva fellowship sounds really interesting, and after my brief stint in Ghana it sounds like that sort of thing I would quite like to do for a few months. However, the fellowship is unpaid and as I said to the guy presenting, my crippling MBA loan repayments make paying for myself to go to a far-flung country quite impossible. Besides, I have a start-up that needs to takeover the world!
Last visit of the trek was to Twitter, still based (thanks to some tax agreement with the city government) in downtown San Francisco. Twitter had been the subject of an interesting Fortune article the day before our visit, which highlighted some of the companies current issues. Needless to say, none of that was discussed in our meeting, but hey it was fun to visit Twitter HQ and tweet from there (I am that sad).
In the evening we met with incoming Said Business School Dean, Peter Tufano and had an open Q&A session about the future of the Business School. I think he’s going to be good for the school.
Friday night entertainment included Duran Duran, and last night’s entertainment included Trentemoller, but I’m all blogged out so excuse me if I don’t go in to detail.
Seeing as this is my last Silicon Valley trek post a few notes of thanks: firstly to Xavier for being “trek leader” and using his extensive network to set up loads of cool meetings. Next to Nick – without whose logistical skills the trip would have descended in to chaos (herding cats doesn’t come close!). Also Joe for also leveraging his extensive network to sort out some awesome meetings and sending us in the direction of some great SF music nights. Our drivers too – without whom we would have never got anywhere. Lastly all my classmates, for making this such an awesome week in Silicon Valley!