[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[FYI] [FWD] Dot com billionaires [...] in all of Europe (Are there any?) --Declan

------- Forwarded message follows -------
Date sent:      	Sat, 15 Jan 2000 10:58:13 -0500
To:             	politech@vorlon.mit.edu
From:           	Declan McCullagh <declan@well.com>
Subject:        	FC: Europe can't match US technology boom --Washington Post
Send reply to:  	declan@well.com


[I can't say this is surprising to me, at least. With due respect to
non-US politech subscribers, I don't see European countries, by and
large, as having the same cultural appreciation for garage
entrepreneurs out to change the world, and of course government
regulations are considerably more onerous. I would be interested in
seeing a list of the dozens of dot com billionaires in the US compared
to the list in all of Europe. (Are there any?) --Declan]



Europe Can't Match U.S. Techno-Boom

By William Drozdiak
Washington Post Foreign Service
Saturday , January 15, 2000 ; A1

BERLIN, Jan. 14 – Across a continent that sees itself as the cradle of
Western science and civilization, many political and business leaders
have reached the alarming conclusion that Europe is rapidly losing
ground to the United States in the growth industries of the future.

Just as the NATO bombing campaign in Kosovo revealed a huge disparity
in military capabilities between the Old and New Worlds, the merger
between America Online and Time Warner has raised fears among
Europeans that the United States is surging ahead in locking up an
enormous commercial bonanza through future control of the Internet and
other technologies.

While Europe has scored a notable success with its mobile telephones,
many leaders now acknowledge a basic policy failure of the past decade
– subsidizing dying industries in an effort to preserve jobs – has
contributed to the overwhelming superiority of the United States in
such booming sectors as computers, Internet services, biotechnology
and even investment banking.

"In Europe we are being left behind, for we have not been capable of
reproducing the successes achieved on the other side of the Atlantic
in the 1990s," said Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar at a
meeting of European officials this week in Madrid aimed at stimulating
growth of the high-tech sector. "Our problem is not the lack of a
scientific or technical base. It is the lack of stimulus for business
initiatives, which is key to North America's success."

What astounds many Europeans is the sheer scale of the AOL-Time Warner
merger – the combined value of both companies represents about 30
percent of Spain's gross national product. "This is the kind of bold
and ambitious way of doing things we need in Europe," said Spanish
Industry Minister Josep Pique.

But given that technological advances tend to produce rapid
innovation, the wide, popular access of computers and the Internet in
the United States is expected to accelerate American predominance for
years to come. While around 50 percent of U.S. homes are hooked up to
the World Wide Web, only 12 percent of families among the 15 nations
of the European Union have similar access.

Similarly, Europe lags well behind in the use of the Web for online
shopping. Last year, according to the European Union, revenue from
electronic commerce among the 15 EU nations grew substantially to $18
billion, but it still amounted to only about one-third of similar
income generated in the United States.

"We need a wake-up and a shake-up at the European level," Erkki
Liikanen, the European Union's commissioner who oversees information
technology, said at the Madrid meeting. "The role and impact of
digital technology is still being widely underestimated in Europe."


---- POLITECH -- the moderated mailing list of politics and technology
To subscribe: send a message to majordomo@vorlon.mit.edu with this
text: subscribe politech More information is at
------- End of forwarded message -------