Monday, August 30, 2010

Exits; You're Doing It Right

When it comes to startups, the notion of "exit" is key. You take big risks, often with high dollar amounts of other people's money, and as a result, everyone wants big returns ("exits"). The old exit path (now just a statistical anomaly) was going public (the quintessential use of other people's money); but the IPO market has dried up. IPOs have been traded for acquisition as the next big exit vehicle. As we all know, acquisitions are 50/50 at the end of the day. They can provide good liquidation for folks in the acquired firm (and associated financiers), but from a longevity standpoint, they're track records aren't great. Over the past year, there have been two great exits/acquisitions for a couple of TechStars Boulder firms. While the dollar amounts might not be where we all dream, the downstream effects of these transactions are admirable.

Occipital
Occipital sold off one of its products (not the team... not the company mind you) to eBay, just a few months ago. What's awesome about this is that the team stands independent. They continue to churn out cool products, with their own culture, on their terms. Spinning out a single product for sale is brilliant (and relatively rare); well done guys.

Filtrbox
Filtrbox sold itself to Jive Software at the beginning of the year. I was a bit skeptical where this would wind up, but I've watched Jive pour resources into Filtrbox, and solidify their offering around Filtrbox's core competencies; so cool to watch.

All right in Boulder's backyard.

Go TechStars! Go smart people!

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