There was definitely something in the air -- nanoparticles, perhaps? -- at the recent Seventh Annual Livingston Nanotechnology Conference. There was an amazing energy of optimism and opportunity as nearly 30 nanotechnology and advanced manufacturing startups offered presentations about their companies to an audience of investors.
On Dec. 7, I had the pleasure of presenting to this esteemed audience (mainly men, I might add, ahem) on behalf of MEMS Industry Group (MIG). I had a ball, and I plan to come back every year.
Scott Livingston was the MC for the day’s event, and he did a stellar job of introducing/networking/commenting/digressing/having a good time to promote his investment philosophy of taking back Wall Street and giving it back to the people (the 99 percent people). Not to get all Occupy Wall Street on you, but Scott has an important message on how the US investment community does not invest in and reward advanced manufacturing. (Yes, it will invest in Groupon and Zynga, but not real job-creating, wealth-generating industries like MEMS, save a few examples like InvenSense.)
The reality is that the US has a competitive advantage in advanced manufacturing in nano- and, to some extent, microtechnology. The time is now, and we can’t afford to blow it.
So that’s where I fit in. I gave a brief introduction to MIG (MEMS Industry Group) and the MEMS market, and then Scott and I did a little back-and-forth interview about the opportunities in MEMS. And he even asked me to list some MEMS startups that folks should check out and invest in. (Some of you owe me big time.) We also talked about the recent InvenSense IPO.
So what was my main message? I lauded the fact that MEMS is in the mainstream. In other words, I said, "MEMS is frickin' everywhere." Well, not quite. What I did say is that the potential for MEMS is huge, and that MEMS has the opportunity to be "frickin’ everywhere," and that investors should jump on board the MEMS train and help fund this potential (and make some money, too).