Before Mike McCue discovered how to flip an iPad into a device that made reading digital magazines a cinch, he himself was discovered by some of the biggest names in the tech world while working away in
Silicon Valley Woodstock, New York.
Then, after AOL bought Netscape, McCue tells Dixon he decided to re-scratch his entrepreneurial itch and describes jumping back into the founder game with his startup, TellMe. “We we wanted to build Dialtone 2.0,” he says.
Hear it all in his own words.
In the below interview, McCue picks up where he left off and discusses narrowly steering TellMe away from a dot.com crashing landing while overseeing a staff of 200 and spending “$45 million a year and little revenue” in the charred market of 2000. Fortunately, TellMe was able to raise a final $125 million round. “As the money was coming in from the banks,” recalls McCue, “the market was crashing.” He had some hard decisions to make as he prepared to “march through the desert.”
It all turned out okay. TellMe was eventually bought by Microsoft for $800 million. But getting there wasn’t easy.
Tomorrow, we’ll post more videos from this interview. Make sure to catch past episodes of Founder Stories with guests ranging Dennis Crowley and Mike Walwrath to David Karp and Lauren Leto here.
Longtime Silicon Valley entrepreneur Mike McCue founded Flipboard in early 2010, with former Apple iPhone engineer Evan Doll. Together they set out to build a global service that would let people make all of their news, photos, and videos from across social networks accessible from a single place. In July 2010, they launched Flipboard for iPad: a social magazine that brings people the most informative, entertaining and amazing stories from around the world and from their daily life. With each flip,...
Tellme provides voice recognition and instruction technology, fundamentally improving how people use the phone to get the information they need everyday. By combining Internet data and a voice interface, Tellme’s services let people simply say what they want and get it. Some of the services running on Tellme’s platform include business search on 411, information search on 1-800-555-TELL as well as customer service and ordering for companies like American Airlines, Merrill Lynch, and FedEx. Tellme powered billions of calls...