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DAVID KARP’S TUMBLR SELLS TO YAHOO FOR $1.1B

Five years ago, tech prodigy David Karp was determined that the business he founded in his mother’s small New York apartment would not be absorbed by a multinational firm.

“We would really rather not be gobbled up by a big media company,” then 21-year-old Karp, the creator of the blogging platform Tumblr, said in an interview with the New York Observer.

I’m always so surprised when people fill their homes up with stuff 

But what if someone was throwing $US1.1 billion cash at you?

Tumblr CEO David Karp.

Tumblr CEO David Karp.

Karp, 26, now looks set to become the latest tech billionaire with reports that Yahoo’s board has approved a deal to purchase Tumblr for

$US1.1 billion in cash.

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It’s a mind-boggling amount of money for anyone, let alone a once socially awkward teenager who dropped out of high school at the age of 15.

Remarkably it was Karp’s mother, teacher Barbara Ackerman, who suggested her son drop out of high school at the age of 15 so he could be home-schooled and continue an internship at an animation production company, Frederator Studios.

Yahoo! are expected to pay $US1.1 billion for Tumblr.

Yahoo is expected to pay $US1.1 billion for Tumblr. Photo: AFP

Karp’s mother recognised that, while her son was not particularly engaged with his classes or his fellow students, he seemed to thrive at the internship where he could talk easily with the company’s coders and engineers.

It was a passion he had developed early, teaching himself how to code HTML at the age of 11.

Karp’s mother told the New York Times that she could feel the sense of relief through her hand on her son’s shoulder when she floated the idea to him.

Soon his career was taking off.

When an entrepreneur named John Maloney sought technical help with his start-up, UrbanBaby.com, a Frederator employee recommended Karp.

The project had to be done in a couple of days, but Karp did it in four hours. At the age of 16, Karp was made UrbanBaby’s head of product, and he was given some equity in the company.

The following year Karp moved to Tokyo, where he lived for five months on his own.

It was there that he cooled on the idea of making robots, and instead decided to become an entrepreneur.

He told The Guardian that initially he would lie about his age when dealing with clients.

“I was so silly – I tried to be very formal and put on a deep voice to clients over the phone so I didn’t have to meet them and give away how young I was,” he said.

“I lied about my age. I lied about the size of my team. I lied about my experience. I was so terribly embarrassed about it for so long. I should have just owned up.”

When he moved back to New York, Karp set up his own software consultancy company, Davidville.

But he soon became fascinated by a new short-form of blogging called a “tumblelog”.

Karp told the New York Observer that he “kept waiting” for one of the established blog platform players to set up a platform for tumblelogging and, when that didn’t happen, he did it himself.

Karp founded Tumblr in 2007 at age 21 from the bedroom of his mother’s apartment in New York.

Sometimes described as Twitter meets YouTube and WordPress, Tumblr lets its users curate pictures, videos and text in one place online. The site gained 75,000 users in the first fortnight.

Tumblr now says it has more than 108 million blogs, 50 billion postings in 12 languages and 175 employees.

The website ranking site Alexa lists Tumblr as number 32 in terms of global popularity, and this year Karp made the Forbes 30 Under 30 list in the media category.

But despite his success, Karp prefers not to live an opulent life.

He currently lives with his girlfriend Rachel Eakley, a chef and psychology graduate student, in a sparse apartment in Brooklyn.

“I don’t have any books. I don’t have many clothes,” Karp told Forbes. “I’m always so surprised when people fill their homes up with stuff.”

The deal, if confirmed, would be the largest for Yahoo since Marissa Mayer took over as chief executive last year and could help the struggling internet pioneer regain traction with younger internet users.

Neither Yahoo nor Tumblr has commented on the report.

But Mayer has scheduled a news conference in New York on Monday at which the company said it will unveil “something special”.
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Henry Sapiecha

 

YAHOO BUYS TUMBLR FOR $1.1BILLION

The board of Yahoo! has agreed to a deal to purchase the popular blogging platform Tumblr for $US1.1 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.

Yahoo! did not immediately return AFP’s calls for confirmation, but CEO Marissa Mayer has scheduled a news conference in New York on Monday at which the company said it will unveil “something special.”

Reports last week said Yahoo! is eyeing the move to attract more users from the key 18- to 24-year-old age bracket, and that the Internet pioneer sees the fast-growing Tumblr as one of the “coolest” sites with young internet users

Yahoo! has been looking at a range of acquisitions since Mayer took over as chief executive last year and vowed to revive the company, which has faded in the face of competition from Google.

Founded in 2007 and headquartered in New York, Tumblr says it has more than 107 million blogs, 50 billion postings in 12 languages and 175 employees. The website ranking site Alexa lists Tumblr as number 32 in terms of global popularity.

If the acquisition takes place, it would be the biggest for Yahoo! under Mayer and come in the wake of other pricey deals for startups, such as Facebook’s acquisition of the photo app Instagram for stock worth $US1 billion at the time

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Henry Sapiecha

 

 

NEW TECH SUMMLY & THE YAHOO BUYOUT TO A 17YEAR OLD

Cloud 9 for the young Nick D’Aloisio techie

At just 17, former Perth and Melbourne resident Nick D’Aloisio is now one of the world’s youngest self-made multimillionaires, after tech giant Yahoo acquired his firm for a reported $28.7 million.

His technology Summly aims to change the way we read emails, news articles or any other text on our computers and smartphones by using algorithms to summarise text in under 400 characters.


I-Tech - Computer Hardware and Software Australia

I like shoes, I will buy a new pair of Nike trainers and I’ll probably get a new computer but at the moment I just want to save and bank it. I don’t have many living expenses.

Summly founder Nick D’Aloisio.

Yahoo did not disclose the terms of the deal, but The Wall Street Journal‘s AllThingsD blog said Yahoo would pay $US30 million ($28.7 million), mostly in cash, with 10 per cent in stock.

Nick D'Aloisio.
Summly founder Nick D’Aloisio, 17.

Before the Yahoo deal, D’Aloisio received a collective $US1.5 million in investment funds from people including celebrities Ashton Kutcher and Stephen Fry and billionaire Li Ka-shing.

Speaking from his family home in London, where he has lived since leaving Australia when he was seven, D’Aloisio said he was excited about the deal with Yahoo, believing it would help assist in developing the Summly technology further and integrating it with Yahoo’s offerings.

His technology summarises text using algorithmic technologies, allowing for simplified dot point summaries of anything on the web such as search results. It has many uses and could even be used to summarise emails, social networking posts and product descriptions.

The Summly app.
The Summly app.

The deal with Yahoo will see his company’s iPhone app Summly shut down. D’Aloisio said the app had been downloaded almost 1 million times in the past five months and generated about 90 million summaries.

While active it received Apple’s Best Apps of 2012 award for Intuitive Touch and had a contract to display content from News Corp publications.
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The purchase has led some in the media to question why Yahoo would want to acquire the technology. Technology news website Wired suggested it was so that Yahoo could be cool again.

The Summly app summarised news in under 400 words.
The Summly app summarised online news articles in under 400 characters.

“There’s no logical explanation for Yahoo’s reported $US30 million acquisition of Summly,” wrote Wired‘s Ryan Tate. “The team and technology are unexceptional and the app itself will be shut down. What Yahoo really gets for its big cheque is momentum and buzz. In other words, Yahoo bought Summly to appear cool again.”

D’Aloisio said it was “technically true” that he was now a millionaire after sealing the Yahoo deal, but added that he had no immediate plans to do anything with the money.

“Obviously the money is going to be in a fund and I’ll work with my parents to save it,’ he said. “I’m just focused now on working for Yahoo and kind of taking everything to the next level.

“I like shoes, I will buy a new pair of Nike trainers and I’ll probably get a new computer but at the moment I just want to save and bank it. I don’t have many living expenses,” he told the London Evening Standard.

D’Aloisio told Fairfax Media last year that he began his journey with computers when he was eight, using Apple’s movie making software iMovie before progressing to the more professional video software Final Cut Pro.

“I basically begged my parents for six months to get [an Apple] computer,” he said of his father, an investment banker, and his mother, a lawyer. “And when I finally got it, instead of using it for just watching videos or browsing the web, I kind of had an interest to create things.”

A lot of D’Aloisio’s coverage in the media has been positive, with some describing him as “telegenic” and a “wunderkind“. But the coverage wasn’t always so glowing.



In 2011 an app writer for technology website Gizmodo, Casey Chan, published D’Aloisio’s Trimit app (now Summly) as “worst app of the week” after D’Aloisio bombarded his office with emails.

“Over the course of a few days, D’Aloisio … barraged me with over a hundred emails about Trimit,” Chan said in a post entitled “How I made a 15-year-old app developer cry“.

“I saw him go from calm to excited to a nervous wreck …” (In comparison, Fairfax was sent six emails chasing up when last year’s article would be published.)

Asked for a response last year to the Gizmodo post, D’Aloisio said his actions occurred at a “very early stage of development”. “Obviously I’m still learning and really excited about everything that’s happened with Summly,” he said. “Dealing with the current media attention is something I’m unexpectedly going to have to get used to.”

In a statement, Yahoo said it was excited to share that it was acquiring Summly and that D’Aloisio and a team would join the technology giant “in the coming weeks”.

I-Tech - Computer Hardware and Software Australia

D’Aloisio will be based at Yahoo’s central London office.

“At the age of 15, Nick D’Aloisio created the Summly app at his home in London,” Yahoo said in its statement. “It started with an insight — that we live in a world of constant information and need new ways to simplify how we find the stories that are important to us, at a glance.”

Yahoo said most articles and web pages were formatted for browsing with mouse clicks and that “the ability to skim them on a phone or a tablet can be a real challenge — we want easier ways to identify what’s important to us”.

Former Google executive Marissa Mayer took over at Yahoo in July 2012 as part of efforts by the struggling internet search pioneer to reinvent itself.

D’Aloisio said he was excited to be working with Mayer.

“The thing that’s really exciting me about Yahoo is the fact that Marissa Mayer is now their CEO, who is a product person,” he said.

With AFP
CardioTech

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha

YouTube founders’

Delicious new venture

April 28, 2011 – 11:39AM

Yahoo! has sold Delicious to YouTube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen, who promised to continue and grow the popular social bookmarking site.

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

Hurley and Chen, who sold YouTube to Google for $US1.65 billion in 2006, said they planned to integrate Delicious with their new San Mateo, California-based internet company AVOS.

“We’re excited to work with this fantastic community and take Delicious to the next level,” AVOS chief executive Hurley said in a statement.

“We see a tremendous opportunity to simplify the way users save and share content they discover anywhere on the web,” Hurley said.

The YouTube co-founders said they would seek to use Delicious to “develop innovative features to help solve the problem of information overload.”

“We see this problem not just in the world of video, but also cutting across every information-intensive media type,” Chen said.

Yahoo! said it will continue to operate Delicious until July, when users will transitioned over to AVOS.

Yahoo! said the sale of Delicious was part of a product strategy that “involves shifting our investment with off-strategy products to put better focus on our core strengths and fund new innovation.”

“We believe this is the right move for the service, our users and our shareholders and look forward to watching the Delicious technology develop,” Yahoo! said.

Delicious, which has millions of users around the world, was launched in 2003 and bought by Yahoo! in 2005.

AFP   Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha


Facebook tops Google

as most visited site in U.S.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at a news conference where he unveiled a new Facebook messaging system in San Francisco, California November 15, 2010. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at a news conference where he revealed a new Facebook messag system in San Francisco, California November 15, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Robert Galbraith

NEW YORK | Thu Dec 30, 2010 6:34pm EST

(Reuters) – Facebook blitzed Google for the first time as the most visited website in the United States for most of 2010.

The social network site edged out Google.com with 8.9 percent of all U.S. visits between January and November 2010, while Google.com ranked 2nd with about 7.2 percent of all visits, according to online analysis service Experian Hitwise.

Facebook’s rise to the top spot shows just how quickly the site has grown in popularity. Within the span of six years, Facebook has become the world’s largest Web social network with roughly half a billion users worldwide.

Google.com dominated the top spot as the most visited website in the USA in 2009 and 2008. News Corp’s MySpace was the No. 1 visited website in 2007. It is now ranked No. 7.

However, when all of Google’s properties are considered — such as YouTube and email, as an example — Google still reigns as the most visited site at 9.9 percent between January and November 2010. Facebook follows at 8.9 percent. Yahoo and all of its properties ranked third at 8.1 percent.

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha