Atex acquired Polopoly, a Swedish web-content management system, for 140 MSEK (about $23.5 million) this week (Swedish article).
For web entrepreneurs the sale has some takeaways.
- It is worth noting that Polopoly, like its Swedish competitor Episerver, is not a product that is generally loved by its users nor have massive cred in the tech community.
- Strategic investors/partners (like Bonnier and its newspapers in Polopoly's case) can be a good thing to drive adoption.
- Raising too much from venture capitalists will severely limit your exit opportunities. The founders Henrik Holmström and Gustaf Sahlman apparently made about $6 million and $3 million respectively (pre-tax, I assume). For a local, non-smash hit company that is good outcome. If you raise $10-20 million dollars (or in the case of WordPress $29.5 million), you cannot really exit below the $100-150 million level (and I guess the investors wouldn't be to happy at that level).