Startups.co has been busy buying services like like Zirtual and Clarity.fm to build a network of connected products for entrepreneurs. Next up: Zana, a site that says it’s “democratizing entrepreneurship.”
The acquisition was reported last week by Columbus Business First. Startups.co CEO Wil Schroter told me today that the deal was a mix of cash and stock, with a price in “the single digit millions.”
Zana was founded by Shea Tate-DiDonna, who previously created the True University program at True Ventures. It covers topics like fundraising and product development, with video lessons from speakers like Steve Blank and Matt Mullenweg.
While Tate-DiDonna moves on to start something new, Schroter said he plans to fold Zana’s content into the main Startups.co site, which will become the “content hub” across the company’s various services (also incorporating stories from Startups.co’s Killerstartups). With 1 million startups and a total of 20 million registered users across the platform, Schroter said Startups.co can already bring this content to a broad audience.
“Our startups are dying for education,” he said.
And while most of the existing Zana videos are focused on tech startups, Schroter said it’s relevant to a broader group of entrepreneurs, and he’ll be moving the tutorials further in that direction. After all, he estimated that only one-third of Startups.co users are tech startups — another third sells consumer products, while one-third are brick-and-mortar retailers.
This marks Schroter’s fifth acquisition of a venture-backed startup in the past 18 months. (He said the last two deals valued Startups.co at more than $100 million.) He said he’s been seeing more startups “trying to find a home at an M&A and partnership level.”
“One of the downsides of everybody funding the unicorns at crazy valuations is that the just okay companies, companies doing a few million dollars in revenue, aren’t getting a lot of love right now,” Schroter said. “There are good, interesting companies that are all getting basically ignored.”