10 Most Successful Web 2.0 Startups To Date

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I’ve had an idea for this kind of a list for months now, but I guess I’ve been waiting until we have clear, agreed, and well-defined players rather than something we insiders consider successful but is really unknown to the rest of the world.

The list was narrowed down from a selection of 20 startups, and the criteria were as simple as (a) they had to be a new startup — Valley-based or not, but most are anyway, and (b) they had to be looked at as a Web 2.0 company (i.e. no eBay or Yahoo! or Craigslist), which I think we’ll all agree on. I’ve tried to diversify the list with startups doing all kinds of things, and while this is a list of the ‘most successful,’ please note that the startups in here are in no way the ‘best.’ They’re simply used by the most people, have happy investors behind them, and are looking toward a bright future.

(1) MySpaceMySpace

Launched: July 2003

Founded by: Tom Anderson and Chris DeWolfe

Type: Social Network

Targeted Audience: 16 – 24 (teens, young adults)

Approximate Users: 150 million (100 million as of August 2006; growing at around 200,000 registrations per day)

Approximate Pageviews: 40 billion per month (as of March 2007)

Acquisition/Valuation: Bought by Rupert Murdoch’s Fox Interactive Media in July 2005 for $580 million

(2) YouTubeYouTube

Launched: February 2005

Founded by: Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim

Type: Video Sharing

Targeted Audience: 16 – 40 (teens, adults)

Approximate Users: Unknown

Approximate Pageviews: 4 billion per month (as of July 2006, serving 100 million videos per day)

Acquisition/Valuation: Bought by Google in October 2006 for $1.6 billion

(3) FacebookFacebook

Launched: February 2004

Founded by: Mark Zuckerberg

Type: Social Network

Targeted Audience: 20 – 25 (college students), this is changing since they have opened up

Approximate Users: 18 million (as of February 2007)

Approximate Pageviews: 22 billion per month (as of December 2006)

Acquisition/Valuation: Rejected $1 billion offer from Yahoo! in September 2006, asking for $2 billion

(4) WikipediaWikipedia

Launched: January 2001

Founded by: Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger

Type: Wiki-based Encyclopedia

Targeted Audience: 10 – 80 (general)

Approximate Users: 50,000 active users (as of January 2006)

Approximate Pageviews: 6 billion per month (as of February 2007)

Acquisition/Valuation: Non-profit, has raised over $3 million in donations

(5) BeboBebo

Launched: January 2005

Founded by: Michael Birch and Xochi Birch

Type: Social Network

Targeted Audience: 16 – 24 (teens, young adults)

Approximate Users: 24 million (as of May 2006)

Approximate Pageviews: 4 billion per month (as of October 2006)

Acquisition/Valuation: Rejected $500 million offer from British Telecom Group, asking for $1 billion

(6) DiggDigg

Launched: November 2004

Founded by: Kevin Rose

Type: Social Content Bookmarking/Voting

Targeted Audience: 16 – 30 (teens, adults; technology-savvy)

Approximate Users: 1 million

Approximate Pageviews: 118 million per month (as of 2006)

Acquisition/Valuation: Rumored to have been in negotiations with Fox Interactive/Newscorp, asking for $150 million

(7) FlickrFlickr

Launched: February 2004

Founded by: Ludicorp

Type: Photo Sharing

Targeted Audience: 16 – 80 (general)

Approximate Users: 1.5 million (as of November 2005)

Approximate Pageviews: Unknown

Acquisition/Valuation: Bought by Yahoo! in March 2005 for an undisclosed price estimated in the lower tens of millions.

(8) NetvibesNetvibes

Launched: September 2005

Founded by: Tariq Krim

Type: AJAX-based Startpage

Targeted Audience: 20 – 40 (adults; technology-savvy)Has

Approximate Users: 7 million (as of February 2007)

Approximate Pageviews: N/A

Acquisition/Valuation: Has received around $20 million of venture capital to date; no acquisition rumors or link-ups of any kind.

(9) Del.icio.usDel.icio.us

Launched: Late 2003

Founded by: Joshua Schachter

Type: Social Bookmarking

Targeted Audience: 20 – 40 (adults; technology-savvy)

Approximate Users: 1 million (as of September 2006)

Approximate Pageviews: 4 million (peak, as of August 2006)

Acquisition/Valuation: Bought by Yahoo! in December 2005 for estimated $30 – $40 million

(10) MeeboMeebo

Launched: September 2005

Founded by: Sandy Jen, Seth Sternberg, and Elaine Wherry

Type: AJAX-based Instant Messaging

Targeted Audience: 13 – 40 (teens, adults)

Approximate Users: 500,000 users (as of October 2006)

Approximate Pageviews: N/A

Acquisition/Valuation: Has received around $12 million of venture capital to date; no acquisition rumors or linkups.


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