What are the 10 technology deals that define the decade between 2000 and 2010. Going in reverse counting order, here are number 10 through 6.
Today’s announcement about Cisco’s acquisition of Linksys is one that leaves me scratching my head a little. What is the logic behind this? Could this represent a change in Cisco’s strategy? Or is it a realization in the part of the networking equipment vendor that its future may not be enhanced by moving into the now heavily depressed telecommunication field. Let’s imagine for a second what this could do in the long term. First of all, by acquiring Linksys, Cisco gets a strong foothold in the small office/home office market as well as the hobbyist/consumer market. Why? Largely because this is where Linksys’ strength is. What Cisco gets out of this is a new source of revenues in a market it has had troubles getting into. The announcement that they will not change the name of the company and will let it run as an independent unit seems to point to that end. Second, it provides Linksys with strong support in enterprise sales. Linksys has been getting into the enterprise largely through the back-door, with employees installing cheap wireless routers in offices. Now, with Cisco’s backing they can get into the enterprise as part of a more complete solution. The…Read More
Today, Ebay announced that it will acquire Paypal for $1.5 billion in stock. The acquisition makes sense as it merges two successful Internet businesses and turns the online auctioneer into an end to end shop for online transaction. Sizing up the businesses Ebay is primarily in the auction business. Everyday, millions of people buy and sell products through the service. Ebay does not hold any of the inventory and focuses primarily on providing a marketplace for exchange. In parallel, Paypal provides a service that allows people to send money electronically by tying credit card numbers to email addresses. 60% of Paypal’s business comes from people who are using Ebay for auction and Ebay tried to compete with Paypal through its own service called Billpoint. The only problem was that Billpoint never received the kind of support Paypal enjoyed. While other offerings (Yahoo PayDirect, Citibank’s C2It, Western Union’s MoneyZap) tried to go after the same market, Paypal established an early lead and hung on to it. Furthermore, Paypal has worked hard to work with multiple credit card providers, and has established signification relationships with companies like UPS to create a system that allows for end to end processing of transaction. Opportunities…Read More
Today, Earthweb and Internet.com announced that Internet.com was acquiring all of Earthweb’s content properties. For me, it’s an interesting announcement because I was involved in the building of both properties. When I left Internet.com in 1996 and went to Earthweb, I was in charge of building Earthweb’s properties into something competitive with Internet.com. At the time, there were already a few players in the news market and I decided that Earthweb’s best positioning was to stay focused on the developer community instead of trying to do just Internet related stuff. Many people (including a lot of people on this list) have asked me what I thought of this announcement. So here it is. Two roads converge In a way, today’s announcement was one that didn’t surprise me much. Over the years, I’ve stayed in touch with people at both companies and, as time went on, I came to realize that both properties should be integrated. Before Earthweb’s IPO, such discussions were held both at Earthweb and at Internet.com and there seems to seem some differing views on the subject. However, I had always been nagged by the feeling that the two properties (the developer.com network and the internet.com network) would…Read More