This past January, upon seeing a demo of IntoNow, we noted that the media check-in game just changed. Apparently, Yahoo agreed — they’ve just acquired the company for something in the range of $20 to $30 million, sources with knowledge of the deal tell us.
There are a couple fascinating layers here. First of all, IntoNow launched just 12 weeks ago. That’s $0 to $30 million (roughly) in just under three months. Second, Yahoo moved fast — really fast — to get this deal done. And they had to — Facebook and Twitter were interested as well, we hear.
Yahoo’s maneuvering here seems to be the opposite of the way they handled the Foursquare negotiations (or should we say, didn’t handle them). We hear that pretty much immediately after IntoNow launched, Yahoo reached out about a possible deal. Music ID service Shazam was also said to be very interested at the time along with one other player in the TV space. But Yahoo SVPs Bill Shaughnessy and Blake Irving wanted to get this deal done bad and they pushed Yahoo to make it so.
Of course, Facebook and Twitter entering the picture during the due diligence period likely helped as well. While both of those companies are said to have had “informal” talks with IntoNow in the past month, Twitter, in particular, was seen as very interested in the space. In other words, don’t be too surprised if they make a move to scoop up one of IntoNow’s competitors — GetGlue, Miso, etc. — as they continue to explore the relationship with television content.
But the competitors lack the audio tracing technology that IntoNow brings to the table. It has helped the service gain traction quickly. We hear they already have between 500,000 and a million users, even though they’re iPhone-only currently. And the amount of content tagged was at a million after just one month, but they’re way past that now.
Now the big question: what will Yahoo do with IntoNow?
It will continue to be very much supported as well as integrated across some of Yahoo’s other properties, we’re hearing right now. And Yahoo’s resources should help them expand to Android, iPad, etc. The entire team of seven is expected to join Yahoo full time with IntoNow CEO Adam Cahan becoming a VP on the product/tech side of things.
While it did only launch 12 weeks ago, IntoNow did have a slightly more complicated beginning. Technically, they were spun out of Auditude, a video monetization startup that raised a second round of funding in January and saw Cahan transition out as CEO to start this new project. Rather than raise a new round of funding right away, IntoNow took some of the Auditude capital in exchange for an ownership share.
Still, thanks to a mostly cash deal (with some stock), we hear that the investors including Greylock Partners, Redpoint Ventures, and a group of angels should be very happy with the quick deal.