Bolt-GoFish Deal Still Not Done

Way way back in the day — February 11, to be exact — troubled video-sharing site Bolt said it had sold itself for $30 million to GoFish to get out of being sued by Universal Music Group. Turns out the deal wasn’t as final as we might have thought.

Earlier this week Bolt co-founder Jay Gould posted on his blog “we still have not closed the Bolt transaction with GoFish,” and since then I’ve been trying to track down what’s actually happened. Digital Music News and Valleywag also picked up the story.

Digital Music News surmises,

As part of its acquisition, GoFish agreed to assume major label and publishing liabilities related to Bolt, though the requirements proved too cumbersome. The consolidated licensing approach complicated previous negotiations involving GoFish only, and ultimately untied the deal.

Gould and the other Bolt co-founder, Aaron Cohen, are now occupied with WikiYou, the Mayfield and First Round Capital funded startup they launched last week. It’s not a video thing, rather a crowd-sourced “unauthorized biography of every person on earth.”

We spoke via instant messenger with Cohen today, who was listed as speaking at the AlwaysOn Stanford Summit we’re attending. He was nowhere to be seen. Funnily enough, he claimed to be totally surprised to be listed on the schedule. And even funnier, he was listed as “Aaron Cohen, CEO, GoFish.”

Cohen confirmed that the transaction had not gone through, but declined to comment on whether it still had a chance of going through.

Update: I adjusted this post to remove the insinuation that Bolt deliberately misled us and the New York Times. To be fair, it seems reasonable that both parties thought the deal would go through at the time.

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