POCC meet - July 03, 2008.
Footprint ventures, and Google acquisition manager for India/Australia presented their views on what they look for in startups.
Footprint ventures are hard-core businessmen, looking for startups with good revenue model, and potential for profit. They have funded companies in all disciplines and orientation - finance/tech/DSP, big names like "Gartner Group", "Vertias", to name a few. It was a little disappointing that they did not talk much about the early-stage startups they have funded in India. But, the question/answer session gave a good coverage.
Google on the other hand is on to something like... window-shopping? :) They are looking for next Google, they say. They are ready to buy anything that is "cool", and, do not care a lot about what they are going to do with the technology (oh yeah, when you have got money... who cares!). They are not "investors". They will acquire you, merge you, and make you an employee... not bad.. you can leave anyways when you want to do it again! :)
So, in short, just start something, if you have potential for profit, you have Footprint ventures, otherwise, if you are "cool", Google might google you!