A tipster contacted Betabeat to let us know that Ben Fischman, the founder and longtime CEO of lifestyle and fashion ecommerce site Rue La La, had stepped down from his role. A press release obtained by Betabeat confirms the news: Mr. Fischman will be replaced by Steve Davis, Rue La La’s president. Read More
Exit This Way
Disney announced today that it’s shuttering LucasArts, the iconic video game publisher tied to the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises created by its parents company, LucasFilms. Read More
We suppose there’s worse ways to end a blue winter Monday than by watching another startup cash out. Business Insider is reporting that Twitter has acquired social TV analytics firm Bluefin Labs. While headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts (nestled in the warm bosom of its mother institution, MIT), CEO J.P. Maheu is based here in the New York City.
So far there’s no number, but Business Insider says it’s Twitter’s largest acquisition to date, north of the $40 million it paid for Tweetdeck, suggesting a price tag somewhere between $50 million and $100 million. Cha-ching! Read More
Another sexy startup has made it across the finish line, following in the fleet footsteps of Instagram. AllThingsD reports that the reservations platform OpenTable has shelled out $10 million to purchase Foodspotting. It ain’t a billion dollars, but it’s not too shabby given that the photo-based recommendations startup had raised $3.75 million in its three years of life. Read More
A day after we learned about a lawsuit alleging Color CEO Bill Nguyen inflicted “emotional distress” on an employee with a guy sporting a Glock, Color has announced it is shutting down. The news posted at the top of the company’s website is succinct: “Alert: We hope you’ve enjoyed sharing your stories via real-time video. Regretfully, the app will no longer be available after 12/31/2012.”
Q&A with Chris Dixon on Joining Andreessen Horowitz: ‘I’m Going to be Very Aggressively Looking for Investments in New York’
Earlier today, serial entrepreneur and investor Chris Dixon made it official. The cofounder of SiteAdvisor (acquired by McAfee) and Hunch (acquired by eBay), who invests both personally and through Founder Collective, will be decamping our fair city for sunnier shores to join Andreessen Horowitz as the Sand Hill Road powerhouse’s seventh general partner. We spoke with Mr. Dixon by phone shortly after the announcement was made to find out what it means for the many ventures he’s involved in here (like eBay’s massive new Flatiron R&D lab, which is slated to house 200 developers and data scientists).
Don’t hold your breath for an East Coast outpost, as cofounder Marc Andreessen emphasized earlier, his is a “single office firm.” In fact, based on the tenor of our questions, Amy Grady, a representative from Andreessen Horowitz who was also on the call, wanted to assure us Mr. Dixon’s hire was about more than just geography. “We didn’t hire Chris just because of New York. It’s a huge bonus, he’s obviously really tapped in, but if we find an entrepreneur with a great idea in Idaho, we’ll invest!”
New York-based street style social network Thre.ad announced in an email sent out to users today that it will be shutting down. The company’s owners would probably rather you think of it as a pivot, however: According to the announcement, they’re folding Thre.ad into a new ecommerce site called That’s Foxy, which will deliver “shop-able products that are inspired by what’s trending in the community.” Read More
Marissa Mayer’s First Acquisition Means an Exit for Justin Bieber, Scooter Braun, Ellen, and Ryan Seacrest
This is about as close as Marissa Mayer has come to being featured in an episode of Entourage. Today, word leaked that the new Yahoo CEO made her first acquisition–or acqui-hire, depending on who you ask. Ms. Mayer has purchased Stamped, a New York City-based recommendations app cofounded by two fellow Xooglers. Stamped cofounder Robby Stein worked closely with Ms. Mayer when the two were both still employed by GOOG.
Mashable says Stamped’s team, five of whom are former Google employees, will be joining “a new mobile product team to be established in New York under the leadership of Stamped’s three co-founders.” In a blog post published to the Stamped site, the team confirmed that they will be “discontinuing the Stamped product” but are working on a solution for users to export their data from the app.
Business Insider reports that the deal was closed for a ”a nice size,” but nothing too hefty. That should mean some extra spending money for a group of people who have no need for it: Stamped’s celebrity investors. Read More
It looks like the Cinderella story that was Zynga’s $183 million acquisition of the long-suffering (and then suddenly desirable) startup OMGPOP may not have a fairy tale ending. The social gaming giant released ”preliminary financial results” this afternoon, ahead of its third-quarter earnings report and the downgraded forecast sent the stock price down 19 percent in after-hours trading.
The results say that Zynga expects a net loss between $90 million and $105 million for the third quarter. One reason for their lowered expectations? Zynga said it expects an $85 million and $95 million write-down on its purchase of New York City-based OMGPOP, the makers of Draw Something. Read More