War for webrtc talent?

In the small world of innovative software industry (Bay Area Fever), VC money is not hard to come by. There is a lot of money around, a LOT! Around 23% of all the VC money in USA (47+ billions) went to SF companies last year.

The value is not so much associated to the capital, but on the competence of the people that are going to take that capital and make it worth a multiple of it’s original financial value. Capital has a value the day you get it, competence of the team has a value for the future of the company.

The engineer and researcher in me feels at home. If you make a difference, you’re not just an employee doing his job, and getting a salary for it, you’re someone who takes half a million funding and turn it into something worth 20+millions.

Smart leaders know that very well. Talent is the key to credibility, to delivery, and to valuation. It is no surprise if the talent race has become in the valley a talent war. (here, here, here, and here) This is good, and this is healthy. Actually, non-compete are illegal in California, to protect talent, that would otherwise be deprived of opportunities. The times of apple and its competitor agreeing not to poach each other is gone.

In a previous post, I pointed at what I humbly thought were outstanding products and or individual in the ecosystem. It won’t come as a surprise to the readers that one of the most visible webrtc engineer out there, the number one webrtc bug finder outside of google and mozilla, philippe hancke has jumped ship and joined Tokbox.

While I would like to believe he got afraid when I told him we, at citrix, would challenge his bug finder supremacy in 2016, and as a result he teamed up with the #2, I think the reason is elsewhere. Tokbox has today the most mature WebRTC PaaS out there, with full visibility in real time on what is happening, the kind of visibility that will allow an outstanding engineer like him to make a difference, which is important to him, and then make money.

In any case, in the webrtc war happening in SF, illustrated e.g. through sponsorship mutual exclusivity between twilio and tokbox for webrtc events in 2015, tokbox has definitely won this battle.

Creative Commons License
This work by Dr. Alexandre Gouaillard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This blog is not about any commercial product or company, even if some might be mentioned or be the object of a post in the context of their usage of the technology. Most of the opinions expressed here are those of the author, and not of any corporate or organizational affiliation.

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