The only solution to managing shareholders with different exit and return horizons, as well as the differing added value they can bring to a business at different points in its life, is to build trust and communicate - something the titans of the industry have always realised.

There is a nice statistic apparently showing that in the past three years no US-based venture capital (VC) firm has backed a silicon-focused start-up based around Palo Alto, while Asian groups have supported 38 in the region of California still called Silicon Valley.

In the week of social network Facebook’s $104bn flotation the statistic was a timely reminder of how far the Valley has moved from its hardware origins forty years earlier towards internet services, according to Timothy Barnes, director…

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