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For Sale, Odeo’s domain, brand, platform

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It was inevitable! Ever since founder Ev Williams decided to buy back San Francisco-based Odeo from his investors and shift his attention to fast growing SMS-alerting service, Twitter, it became clear that Odeo brand and domain might be up for grabs. Today he announced as much on the Obvious Corp blog, even though Williams points out that AdSense does cover the costs of running the service as it is. They want to sell the domain, the platform, and the brand – either for cash or equity.

Odeo is worth something – it gets 684,941 visitors a month, and generates over 3 million pageviews. Perhaps Williams & Co. can recoup enough to cover what Ev had to pay back his VCs!

It seems likely Odeo is worth more to someone else than it is to us at this point, so we’re looking for a new home for it. We’ve been having some conversations with potential buyers, and this is our attempt to put the word out more widely in the most expeditious way (and without involving investment bankers and the like). If we don’t get any attractive offers, we’ll continue to run it.

In a separate post on his personal blog, Williams argues that with so many tiny companies looking to sell themselves without availing the services of an investment bank, why isn’t there a proper market place for selling smallish-project-companies. In the past several companies have tried to sell themselves on EBay, but only a handful have been successful. Ev does bring up a good point: maybe it is time to set one up. Maybe Paul Graham can incubate it?

Incidentally, with those stats, how much do you think Odeo can fetch?

7 Responses to “For Sale, Odeo’s domain, brand, platform”

  1. Yes, VentureBoard offers this sort of thing.

    Seems to be working. SupportMagic recently put itself up for sale, and the company told us that an investor bought them after finding them on VentureBoard.

    Fire me an email at venturebeat at gmail dot com if you have any questions about posting. Or just go to the “ventureboard” tab at venturebeat.

    Matt Marshall

  2. I think they need to acquire the domain name first before attaching it to their own website and making it a independent product to make it more standardize would be nice.

    I would think eBay would rather setup something like this through their own website since they have the auction power setup already.

  3. Why doesn’t that marketplace exist? Good question.

    I think it might be the nature of “the business” – the current number of small project businesses selling themselves might be an anomaly. Will the creation and sale of web startups continue far enough into the future to make it a viable marketplace? I’m not sure, I’ll give it a 50/50.

    It wouldn’t be hard to code it up, though… Someone could easily position it as “build your service and sell it here” or “Stay out of the Deadpool – Sell your service!”