What defines a tech company?

Salesforce
OHANA GANG

Salesforce

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Netflix, Google
OHANA GANGmore
Sep 13 11 Comments

What are the conditions to be considered a technology company? Which are necessary and which are sufficient? Do we have any we can all reasonably agree with?

Is it the development of software products?

What about development of hardware products?

Embracing technology in product development?

Heavy investment in research and development?

A platform which aggregates other providers' products and collects a fee?

A company which derives most or all of its revenue from digital advertising?

A business model with fixed costs and high margin?

The ability to scale superlinearly compared to development costs?

A company with free snacks, cafeterias, a game room and kambucha on tap?

A company that software engineers think is cool and hip?

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TOP 11 Comments
    • Google / Product jr_exec
      beat me to it :) solid framework/analysis
      Sep 13
    • Amazon jsjzjzjzns
      Agree
      Sep 13
    • Google / Eng d3j88wq
      "Note the centrality of software in all of these characteristics:
      ▪︎Software creates ecosystems.
      ▪︎Software has zero marginal costs.
      ▪︎Software improves over time.
      ▪︎Software offers infinite leverage.
      ▪︎Software enables zero transaction costs.
      The question of whether companies are tech companies, then, depends on how much of their business is governed by software’s unique characteristics, and how much is limited by real world factors."
      Sep 13
    • Google / Product jr_exec
      it depends on all that, yes ... and on how much tc given to eng team
      Sep 13
  • WeWork RPvk36
    All revenue comes from selling software and/or hardware to customers.
    Sep 13 2
    • Salesforce
      OHANA GANG

      Salesforce

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      Netflix, Google
      OHANA GANGmore
      OP
      Risky business being first commenter from WeWork
      Sep 13
    • WeWork RPvk36
      I definitely know what’s NOT a tech company..
      Sep 13
  • Addepar snert
    A tech company is any company that employs at least one engineer and wants a 7x multiple
    Sep 13 2
    • Salesforce
      OHANA GANG

      Salesforce

      PRE
      Netflix, Google
      OHANA GANGmore
      OP
      That includes the majority of pharma research companies; would you agree they are tech companies?
      Sep 13
    • Addepar snert
      I would agree they want to be considered as such
      Sep 13

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