Kiko Sold Out — Summary of The Events So Far

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Finally, Kiko’s ebay auction is closed and the site/application is sold at $258,100.

Founder, Justin Kan is not at all deterred after letting go his baby . Instead, he is working on another great new idea (talk of risk appetite? huh):

In his own words

“We are selling Kiko because we want to have time to work on other projects as a development team. We had a project in mind we just didn’t want to wait on :)”

Here is summary of what others have to say about Kiko.

~~ Few think that Kiko’s demise signals the end of Web 2.0 bubble burst~~
Undoubtedly, they had a great product, actually a super hit (40,000 visitors per month), but never had a business model. There were some talks about enterprise solution etc., but somehow it never saw the light of the day..

And, I believe its too much to say that this is harbinger of web 2.0’s burst. A company/product needs to be seen in the whole ecosystem of things and unfortunately, Kiko was too small (and incomplete) a company in this cluttered space of calendar applications.

~~ The G Factor~~
Many VCs consider that Kiko’s demise was triggered by launch of Google Calendar. Although Kiko had quite a good no. of loyal users, most of them were registered thru’ Gmail id. So, when Google launched its calendar and integrated with Google Account, these users ditched Kiko and embraced Google Calendar.

Paul Graham’s suggestion to startups – “Stay out of Google’s way” – Google is to web 2.0, what Microsoft was for web 1.0. Its all about the sheer size, and startups are too small to compete with Google’s loyal user base.

I don’t buy this. Even Google was a startup against the giants. It’s all about bringing in the disruption and Kiko even though a technogically hit product, didn’t make a lot of business/real-life sense.

~~My view/take~~
I have worked with few startups and what distinguishes successful one from rest of the pack is How Well Do You Execute.

As Justin mentions in his blog, one of the most important aspect of running a startup is to stay focussed. Kiko’s founders swinged into too many ideas, and were not able to focus on the core product. And we all know the result.

Infact, Kiko when launched, was a feature and not a complete product. They should have integrated calendar with popular email client (after all, the most significant usage of calendar application is for one to schedule meetings using their email client).

The good news about Kiko’s exit is the RoI- With a mere investment of $50,000 (they hired just 1 guy), Kiko’s winning bid was closed at $250,100 (5 times more).

Kiko was a fast bullet, which missed the target, but definitely the founders have learnt a big lesson.

It was all about amateurish entrepreneurs, who learned it the hard way!

Wishing Justin and his team very best for their new venture (funded by Paul Graham/ YCombinator)

Related:: TechCrunch’s view, another one| Paul Graham’s take | Om Malik’s Gyaan | Lessons from Kiko(OnStartups.com) | Scobleizer’s views

From Kiko: Richard (UI Designer’s) Blog | Justin’s Blog

Filed Under: Kiko, web 2.0 startups, bubble burst

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