I was able to snag Abheek Anand, Product Manager over at a little company called Facebook for a chat yesterday afternoon. Abheek is an old friend of Dealmaker Media – having presented his company Tagtile at Under the Radar in 2011. TagTile was acquired by Facebook in 2012 and since, Abheek has found a home in their offices in Menlo Park.
How many startup partnerships does Facebook typically do a year?
We are always looking for great startups, and we probably do about 10-15 partnerships in a given year.
What trends are you all getting excited about at Facebook?
Obviously, the mobile market is very interesting to a lot of people, including us. Broadly speaking, we have a lot going on, but mobile monetization and commerce are to areas that are very interesting to my team.
What are some of the characteristics Facebooks looks for in a startup?
We look for new approaches and the ability for an idea or product to develop to the scale at which Facebook operates. We also look closely at the team. Partnerships are just as much about the people you with as the technology / service they’ve developed.
Having been an entrepreneur yourself, what advice would you give to a fellow founder looking to partner with Facebook?
Focus on what is unique. There are many approaches to solve a problem – what differentiates you from the rest? Is it your product, your team or both? Make sure you highlight the differences. Brands, businesses and VCs meet a lot of people who try the same approach and teams all start to look alike. Even if you are a young startup with little traction – if you have a wow factor, it helps to grab attention.
What’s it like over at the Facebook headquarters?
People move incredibly fast over here – things shift quickly. Must be all that young blood!
Best thing about having worked with Dealmaker Media?
My interactions with CEO Debbie Landa (laughing), memorable to say the least!