Odeo Purchased Back by Founder

    October 26, 2006

The development, launch, growth and (minor) failure of Odeo, is a strange story. When the company, founded by Blogger co-founder Evan Williams, launched back in February of 2005, it raised $5 million in VC, but never really raised our attention.

Evan has publicly spoken about why the company missed the mark and now a new chapter is beginning for the company. Evan and the other “Odeos” have created a new company called Obvious Corp and have bought back all of Odeo’s assets.

Evan explains the model for Obvious at his own blog.

The Obvious model goes something like this:

* Build things cheaply and rapidly by keeping teams small and self-organized.

* Leverage technology, know-how, and infrastructure across products (but brand them separately, so they’re focused and easy to understand)

* Use the aggregate attention and user base of the network to gain traction for new services faster than they could gain awareness independently

What started as a part-time project for Evan is now a full-time effort. He used his own money to buy back the company – which must be at least the $5m pumped into it – and so, I suspect we’ll see a more concerted effort from Evan and the team this time around.


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Andy Beal is an internet marketing consultant and considered one of the world’s most respected and interactive search engine marketing experts. Andy has worked with many Fortune 1000 companies such as Motorola, CitiFinancial, Lowes, Alaska Air, DeWALT, NBC and Experian.

You can read his internet marketing blog at Marketing Pilgrim and reach him at andy.beal@gmail.com.