July 12, 2012 at 7:54 PM ET
A true internet story: From “How This Kid Made $60 Million In 18 Months" to company sold for $500,000.
Pioneering social/new aggregator website Digg, which at one time had founder Kevin Rose on the cover of BusinessWeek with the “$60 million” label was sold Thursday.
New York tech incubator Betaworks acquired the website in a deal that included the remaining brand assets, Reuters reported.
The Wall Street Journal reported the price as $500,000, although Digg CEO Matt Williams disputed the figure, telling All Things D the cash and equity deal was “significantly larger.” He did not offer specifics.
The low selling price shows how quickly fortunes can turn for even the hottest web startups. According to The Wall Street Journal, Digg took more than $45 million from investors since launching in 2004.
CEO Williams shared the news to the Digg community. Williams says that Betaworks will still unveil a new cloud-based version of Digg as a complement to the existing News.me offerings. Williams will join Andreessen Horowitz as Entrepreneur in Residence as soon as the transition to Betaworks is complete.
At this point, it almost looks like the most valuable part of Digg is the once-hot brand name. It may be hard to remember for some web users, but in a land before the mainstreamification of Reddit, Digg was the place to be.
The company also vows that it is going to “turn Digg back into a startup. Low budget, small team, fast cycles.”
In May, the Washington Post Company’s Social Code hired away more than half of Digg’s staff. Since then ,the Journal reports that a number of companies bid on the remaining assets.
When and why did you stop using Digg? Tell us in the comments.
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