What would you do next if you sold your company to an Internet industry giant for a few million dollars?
Existing examples show that there are 4 types of Internet millionaires :
– serial entrepreneurs – continuing what they started;
– dreamers – expanding their horizons;
– helpers – invest and help a lot of entrepreneurs develop new areas of business;
– permanent – stay in their jobs.
Now let’s look at each type and illustrate it with a series of famous examples.
Serial entrepreneurs know how to make money, pick the best people, and promote their company to acquisition by another company or an initial public offering on the stock market.Investors simply adore them, and are willing to give them money because they are sure he, or she, will do well again.Note that most serial entrepreneurs are investors at the same time.
Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis
Kazaa, Skype and now Joost.Having disrupted companies that have evolved over decades and changed the way we use our computers through P2P technology, the Northern European stars have not been complacent.Their latest venture, TV Internet service Joost, has received $45 million in funding from such serious venture capital firms as Sequoia Capital.
He founded Netscape, and now he’s riding in the same web dvan harness with Ning, the social networking network.Follow his fascinating blog http://blog.pmarca.com
Does this say anything to anyone? JotSpot became his second venture, later bought by Google for an undisclosed amount.So, Joe is now a Googler.But I suspect that a new idea may soon ignite a thirst for a new startup in him.
His first successful business, ONEList, became part of Yahoo in 1999, but it wasn’t enough for him – he went on to organize Bloglines, which was bought by Ask.
Former Paypal board member, but now gearing up for what must be the biggest public offering of the Web 2.0 era (unless, of course, Facebookcomes forward too) with its professional network, LinkedIn.
Founder of the store price comparison engine Kelkoo , which became the biggest hit in Europe after it was bought by Yahoo. Now runs the company’s Wikio – a mix of Digg and a search engine aimed at the European public.
Dreamers navigate the business very well, but pursue other dreams and are exposed to other risks. As a rule, they leave the Internet business and start research projects. As for funding, they are not as fortunate as their fellow serial entrepreneurs — they usually need government grants, because the return on investment is much lower.
From the Internet to Space. His new goal is to conquer space with his new company SpaceX which recently had a successful rocket launch into space
One of the founders of eGroups. Now works in green energy at his solar energy company NanoSolar
Started with broadcast.com (bought by Yahoo for a few billion), and now runs the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks team. Well, it’s not science, but it’s definitely a dream come true!
The older brother of Google co-founder Larry Page. Carl not only helped his brother build Google, he was also among the founders of eGroups, which was bought by Yahoo. And now he holds the position of chief technology officer at HandHeld Entertainment. – a company in the portable entertainment gadget industry.
Started a company called AnyBots , which deals with humanoid robots in its quiet office in Mountain View. He also co-founded Viaweb, also sold to Yahoo.
His new target is Bill Gates and Microsoft. The South African, founder of the SSL protocol certification company Thawte (now Verisign), is currently leading the Ubuntu – the first Linux-based operating system included with Dell computers.
Like Mark Shuttleworth, he also deals with operating systems. He is the founder of mp3.com (bought by French Vivendi Universal). Now heads a controversial Linux company which has caused much controversy, Linspire
Founder of Hotmail (acquired by Microsoft for $400 million). Today is trying to rebuild Silicon Valley in India under the name Nano City.
This is probably the longest list because almost every venture capital firm has one or more successful entrepreneurs on its staff. However, we will limit ourselves to just a few examples. These people, instead of focusing on one company and one idea, share their experience and money with new entrepreneurs, receiving shares in return.
Along with Ken Howery and Luke Nosek, the founders of Paypal, now heads a venture capital firm Founders’ Fund , which has already invested in Facebook , Geni , Powerset and Slide
Helps young entrepreneurs who participate in his Y Combinator program. His successful investments include. iminlikewithyou , reddit , Scribd and Justin.TV
Founded half.com and sold it to eBay. Now runs First Round Capital. – an investment firm that invests in start-up projects, already has a decent portfolio that includes Wikia, OpenAds, Powerset and Riya.
Permanent ones tend to include those who have succeeded and brought their company to an initial public offering. For example, Jeff Bezos founded Amazon.com and still runs the company today. Like him, Pierre Omidyar is the founder and chairman of eBay. But interestingly enough, they, too, fuel their passion for new technologies by investing in young companies. For example, Bezos has invested in 37Signals , and Omidyar’s firm has invested in SocialText
It’s rare that the founder of a purchased company stays with it. Scott Shambarger, who worked at eGroups, is still with Yahoo. Sometimes, as in the case of MySpace, the founders of a purchased company can demand solid compensation just to stay in their new company.
For none of these entrepreneurs is money the only motivation. After all, there are safer and equally profitable ways to make money. It seems to me that one can only explain their continued investment and entrepreneurship by the pursuit of new technologies and creation.
All of these people are doing what they think they are good at and what can make our lives better. Perhaps this is the basic premise of a successful business. If your primary motivation is to vacation in the Caribbean, then you, have chosen the wrong path. It seems to be the passion for technology that keeps our heroes coming back again and again.
In my blog With photos.