Silicon Valley video interview. Sergey Burkov - serial entrepreneur, mentor 500 Startups, the first head of the Google development center in Russia

    Sergey Burkov was the first head of the Google development center in Russia. In less than 2 years, under his leadership, Google has significantly improved the quality of Russian-language search, released more than a dozen products, tripled traffic and increased its share in the Russian web search market from 10% to 27%. Before joining Google, Sergey was the founder and leader of three startups - the last of which, Dulance, which created a search mechanism for goods, was bought by Google. Sergey Burkov was a co-founder of AmBAR , the largest US business association of Russian- speaking high-tech professionals in the United States. Now Sergey works as a mentor with promising startups and is the mentor of one of the world's best startup accelerators 500 Startups.

    In addition to 500 Startups, Sergey Burkov is the mentor / adviser of the following companies:
    - Zingaya (client-less web telephony)
    - Choister (smart apartment search in Russia)
    - Chadwick (NLP-driven sports app)
    - Magnifis (Robin, the Siri for Android)
    - Cloudessa (RADIUS server in the cloud)
    - Builders Cloud (construction blueprints on iPad + cloud)
    - Open Cancer Network (patient - physician forum and info base)

    Sergey also led the integration and further development of the technology that grew out of Google’s acquisition of the start-up company Dulance, Inc., which Sergey had previously founded - as a result, the Dulance team was the backbone of Google’s Moscow office. Dulance worked to create a new-generation product search engine capable of finding any product sold on the Internet. With the help of artificial intelligence technologies, the search engine extracts the names of goods, prices and pictures directly from the pages of online stores. This approach allows you to cover almost all small and specialized stores around the world selling any, even the rarest, products.

    In the past, Sergey Burkov was a physicist who worked at leading American universities, including Cornell University and the University of Wisconsin. The author of more than 40 scientific papers in physics and mathematics, Sergey graduated from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and defended his thesis in theoretical physics at the Institute of Theoretical Physics named after Landau.

    Interview Questions:
    • How do you choose startups that you will work with as a mentor? What are the criteria?
    • Does the startup boom continue, or is it declining?
    • What are the most promising areas for startups, and in which areas is it better not to “meddle”?
    • I would like to clarify about B2B. Should I focus on large corporations or small businesses?
    • At what stage is a startup best to apply for an accelerator?
    • What are the main criteria for selecting an accelerator?
    • How important is it to have a startup recommendation and stay in the Valley?
    • In your opinion, what are beginning startups missing out on? What is most worth paying attention to?
    • It turns out that the main recommendation: pay more attention to Customer Development?
    • As for fundraising, there are 2 points of view: 1) you need it as soon as possible (go to the accelerator or to the investor), 2) you need it as soon as possible (if the company can exist so far without attracting additional financing)
    • Is there anything else you think is important to say about startups?
    • That is, copycat (clones) is a business?
    • How do you evaluate the SVOD conference (held by AmBAR ) as an opportunity for Russian companies and investors to “light up” in the Valley, learn, establish contacts and make deals?

    Thank you for your attention and for the positive feedback. Subscribe to the channel to follow the video updates (reports and interviews). If someone wants to help with decryption, it would be great. Unfortunately, I simply do not have time for this. The article uses excerpts from the curriculum vitae of RVC .

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