The dotcom boom is now getting on for ten years ago. Here’s a list of some of the crazier acquisitions and cash burning that took place:
Boo.com set itself up as an online clothing retail site and burned its way through $135 million in 18 months before being liquidated.
Geocities.com purchased by Yahoo in January 1999 for $3.57 billion in stock. In 2009 Yahoo shut the service down in almost every country after failing to make anything useful or profitable out of it.
lastminute.com floated on the LSE in March 2000 with shares priced at 380p. The shares rose initially but within two weeks dropped to 270p. A year later they were trading at under 80p. Five years later the company still hadn’t made a profit and was sold to Sabre Holdings.
Lycos bought by a subsidiary of Telefonica (who own o2 in the UK) for $12.5 billion in May 2000. In August 2004 they sold it on for $95m. That’s a loss of over $3 billion for each year they owned it.
It really was a crazy time – a lot of people got rich but a lot must have lost their shirts!