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US Entrepreneur Visits NovaUCD

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DateMonday, January 19, 2009
AuthorBarry Alistair

US Entrepreneur Visits NovaUCD

CEO of Silicon Valleys Plug and Play Tech Center, Saeed Amidi Shares Experience with Irish Tech Startups in NovaUCD



Saeed Amidi, President and CEO of the Plug & Play Technology Center in Silicon Valley - an organisation that brings together entrepreneur and investor

Located in the heart of Silicon Valley, the Plug and Play Tech Center is a community of 220 technology start-up companies in the areas of Web 2.0, SaaS, Systems, Semiconductor and Telecomm verticals.



Since its inception in January 2006 the center has helped raise over $400 million in venture funding for start-up companies which have so far created a cumulative value of $2 billion.



Saeed Amidi, a serial entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in founding, operating, and growing successful companies, is the President and CEO of the Plug and Play Tech Center.


Born in Iran in 1960 into a wealthy industrial family, Saeed's family moved to California in 1979 at the start of the Iranian revolution. In 1980 Saeed co-founded the Amidi Group, selling drinks packaging and bottled water. It is now a conglomerate of privately-held business enterprises consisting of several domestic (US) and international entities with significant manufacturing, distribution, trading, retail, and real estate holdings.


Saeed has been a technology investor since 1996 when he bought the office building where he ran Amidi. Now in the real estate business, he began to lease space - his first tenant was Google. As a start-up company, and being a risky proposition for the new landlords, Amidi asked for a years rental in advance, and then immediately invested the money back in to Google.


And so the Plug and Play Technology Center concept was born.


Since then he has been closely involved with more than twenty new emerging growth companies, including PayPal (acquired by eBay), Preview Systems, DoveBid, Crosslayer Networks, Affinity Engines, Gabbly and Sigma Quest.



In 2000 he co-founded Amidzad Partners, a seed and early-stage investment firm focused on investing in emerging growth companies, with Pejman Nozad and Rahim Amidi, an organisation which is key to the success of Plug and Play Tech Center.


Over the years, the Plug and Play Tech Center has leveraged its considerable network, and has assembled a world-class network of serial entrepreneurs, strategic investors ( including the most influential venture capital firms of Silicon Valley), and industry leaders who actively assist the start-ups to become successful companies



Working alongside Ivy League universities, (much like NovaUCD and DCU Invent etc), the Plug Play Tech Center operates from multiple Valley campuses (Palo Alto, Sunnyvale and Redwood City) and has become the ultimate place to launch and grow promising new technologies


The PACT (Plug and Play Acceleration and Collaboration Track) international seminar took place at the end of 2008. The purpose of the seminar was to foster a culture of innovation and a spirit of entrepreneurship in universities and to examine the challenges that young start-ups and entrepreneurs face and to share best practices in technology incubation.


The visit to NovaUCD this morning is part of a European Tour to introduce the center to Universities and was attended by Venture Capitalists, Academics and members of the NovaUCD community. Saeed told that he chose to visit Ireland because of a recent meeting with Dr Pat Frain, the Director of NovaUCD and was impressed with his passion of building the NovaUCD model.



Whilst in Ireland, Saeed is meeting with asimil8, Aonta Technologies, heyStaks, a new start-up spearheaded by Barry Smyth, founder of ChangingWorlds.








Corporate Information


Visit Plug and Play Technology Center




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