When Nick D'Aloisio was fifteen, he founded Summly.
Summly is a mobile news aggregation app that doesn't make any money, but no matter. Today, D'Aloisio sold his startup to Yahoo for close to $30 million, AllThingsD reports. It's not clear how much of the deal was cash versus stock. Either way, it's a lofty exit for a 17-year-old – or anyone for that matter.
Yahoo plans to shut down D'Aloisio's company. So why'd it spend $30 million on a kid?
The buyout fits every hint Marissa Mayer has dropped about her acquisition plans:
- She's bringing talent into Yahoo
- She's targeting mobile developers and engineers
- She's investing in a relatively cheap social startup that she and Yahoo can try and grow into a much bigger business.
- The acquisition was in the right price range.
- Other recent acquisitions that also fit the bill: Stamped, Alike
How's D'Aloisio feeling right now? "Truly excited," he tweets.
Here's his blog post with the announcement this morning:
In true Summly fashion, I will keep this short and sweet.
I am delighted to announce Summly has signed an agreement to be acquired by Yahoo!. Our vision is to simplify how we get information and we are thrilled to continue this mission with Yahoo!'s global scale and expertise. After spending some time on campus, I discovered that Yahoo! has an inspirational goal to make people's daily routines entertaining and meaningful, and mobile will be a central part of that vision. For us, it's the perfect fit.
When I founded Summly at 15, I would have never imagined being in this position so suddenly. I'd personally like to thank Li Ka-Shing and Horizons Ventures for having the foresight to back a teenager pursuing his dream. Also to our investors, advisors and of course the fantastic team for believing in the potential of Summly. Without you all, this never would have been possible. I'd also like to thank my family, friends and school for supporting me.
Most importantly, thank you to our wonderful users who have helped contribute to us receiving Apple's Best Apps of 2012 award for Intuitive Touch! We will be removing Summly from the App Store today but expect our summarization technology will soon return to multiple Yahoo! products - see this as a ‘power nap' so to speak.
With over 90 million summaries read in just a few short months, this is just the beginning for our technology. As we move towards a more refined, liberated and intelligent mobile web, summaries will continue to help navigate through our ever expanding information universe.
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