Auctomatic – A Nice Exit

I see that the Auctomatic boys got bought by Communicate.Com. TechCrunch says they got $5m but Damien disagrees.

I’m happy for the lads that kicked off Auctomatic and my congratulations go out to them, but this was not an Irish company, this was an Irish idea taken to America for execution. Y-Combinator has a proven model and an excellent collection of catchers mitts for good ideas. We cannot hope to emulate that kind of investment environment in a country of 4m.

Anybody can choose to take their ideas to America and take their shot, I guarantee you any of the Paddys Valley companies would triple their chances of success by moving to San Francisco.

I and (and I suspect the others on Paddy’s Valley) have chosen to be successful here in Ireland and despite the difficulties I predict several of us will succeed.

This may also be unpopular but I think it should be said, the 2-3m USD valuation is hardly what I would call a spectacular world beating exit for a Valley company. It was a successful technology sale rather than the sale of a hugely successful company.

7 thoughts on “Auctomatic – A Nice Exit

  1. I guess it depends on what your requirements are. I don’t think that sort of exit is possible over here but then there have been buyouts up here. BIC Systems (a medium enterprise) was bought out by BT, TIBUS was bought out by UTV.

    Shows one thing though. They went all the way to Silicon Valley to sell to a company in Canada.


  2. Georgie, nor would I, but 3m exits is not in the Game plan of any Irish, European or US VC that I know of. Ireland is not going to compete in the global knowledge economy of the next twenty years if it is content with a 3m exit valuation.


  3. @mj – The Irish hosting business is a bit overdue for that kind of consolidation. A lot of the larger hosters are really pseudo-hosters in that they are web developers that provide hosting facilities to their clients. BT is on a slide to oblivion as regards retail webhosting. Ditto for Eircom. The ISPs just don’t have the management and expertise to compete with the second generation Hosting Service Providers. A lot of the smaller players in the hosting business here are going to be edged out of the market over the next year.

    Still though it is a nice exit for the guys in Auctomatic.


  4. To paraphrase someone, JOE! I believe you have posted in one of your blogs, that an exit is an exit. I agree, as long as the exit looks after the people that joined the visionary on the journey… That’s one of the hard calls when you exit in any form whether selling at a loss, profit or folding. At the end of the day, as in any business, you have lives you are responsibile for in your hands; irrespective of whether you have started or simply manage parts of what you are doing as an FTE. It’s a bigger picture kind of thing (shareholders first, naturally).

    Oh dear God, I’ve lost my nasty streak….. Or is it just a new marketing streak? I’m undecided! Hang on. EVERYONE GO GREEN. (or at least ensure your company has a policy that addresses it….trust me…)


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