I was delighted to hear about the Foxytunes-Yahoo! deal. The Israeli media reports 30-40 mil , which is x10 on investment.
I met Alex & Vitaly, brothers and founders, in the summer of 2006, while visiting Israel on another project. A long talk in my hotel room has developed to a short but sweet brand strategy project. One of my most enjoyable collaborations ever.
Over a couple of weeks, mostly through email and Skype, we had some seriously exciting conversations about the future of music and the Internet, and how Foxytunes can help. At the time they were already a highly popular Firefox extension, but found it hard to communicate and differentiate their offering.
My job is rarely that easy – all the good stuff was there, we just had to dig for it together, focus it, and articulate it. That’s because Alex & Vitally are true visionaries, driven by a very clear ideology. I would come up with catchy ways to convey what they were about, and they would gently slap my hand when the message wasn’t as accurate and clear as it was in their mind, or if it could make anyone, anywhere, confuse their true cause.
Back in the days, we used to talk about how information wants to be free (this fight is still going on, recently the fight for user information). It can also be said that music wants to be free, and Foxytunes is a product built around that world-view.
For me, Foxytunes were always the poster-boys-case-study for a post I wrote about the relationship between brand strategy and product development. Now I can finally say it.
I would like to think our collaboration helped them communicate more clearly and get decision makers along the way “get it” the same way Firefox users so easily groked them, but I always knew they were going to be successful – with or without my help.
I’ve met very few web entrepreneurs more deserving of becoming multi-millionaires.
My only regret is that at the time they politely declined my offer to get paid in stock-options… 🙂
Mazal Tov guys! It has been a pleasure and an honour!