Catapults, subsidies, and benefits: Bongonomics explained
Our VC's on FIRE at Burning Man and the Paralytic Games
I shall confess the real reason I have spent a couple of silent weeks since my triumphant Olympic Opening Ceremony: it's one of logistics. I haven't been able to get to the Bong Ventures HQx in Shoreditch. Literally.
The Bong Ventures loft complex normally provides a laidback and congenial co-working hub for my start-ups. But for the past month it's been chaos. I've had guys in wheelchairs throwing things at each other, and one particularly scary dude who is half-man, and half a gigantic-spring, vaulting through the ceiling. It's caused havoc with my feng shui and there are broken bottles of Puyehue water everywhere.
Nobody told me that after the Olympics was over, there would be another games festival - this time for people on Sickness and Invalidity Benefit. And nobody thought to tell the Bongster that Bong Ventures HQ had been designated as a training camp. What the FUCK?
This is doubly embarrassing, not just because of my long and mutually fruitful relationship with LOCOG as social branding enforcement consultant, but because I have been doing some strategic consulting for a fine outfit called Atos. Atos performs a vital role in ensuring that Catapults which should rightfully go to start-ups in Shoreditch are not being frittered away on spongers.
So far the Incapacity Benefits claimants haven't found the iPad app we developed for Atos, which creates a mobile geolocation-aware Benefit Integrity Centre for inspectors which is fully Retina Display™-capable.
Look, I'm as compassionate as the next Shoreditch Venture Capitalist, but unless you can make a meaningful contribution to the Post-Profit Economy, such as being able to write a social media engagement strategy, and show some real Hashtag-Traction, then it's money down the drain. You have to earn your keep. It's called tough love.
Bong Out. ®
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Steve Bong is the founder of Bong Ventures, an early stage investor and incubator focussing on innovative new technology startups based in Shoreditch, London. He enjoys parties, foreign travel, Open Data and draws his inspiration from Ayn Rand and His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. He advises No.10 policy guru Rahul Sativa on mindfulness and innovation, Mark Zuckerberg on the Perfect IPO, LOCOG on brand enforcement, and imagineered the Olympic Opening Ceremony with Danny Boyle.