Didn't work Wednesday: Selling Statsfeed

Statsfeed was arguably the most successful personal project I’ve built to date. It was a b2b subscription based web service that a handful of fantasy sports businesses used for stats to power their games and systems. The average subscription was about $5-7k per season.

I never spent a dime on advertising and the cost for running the system was generally covered by just one client. At the time, the legal issues around statistics were a gray area at best and so I very intentionally kept the company very small and off the radar.

So this system made me a hefty little profit every year.

However, after a few years of running the business it started to reach a cross-roads point and it was becoming clear that I was going to need to either staff up and go big…or wind down and move into something else.

I struggled with the stage for awhile, but ultimately decided that the (legal) risk involved in the space as a whole was not something I personally would be good at taking on…and so my best option would be to sell the company and move on to something that would be a better fit for me.

The trouble was, I had basically backed into building the company. I did not have a structure or a system that was conducive to selling. There was some tech, and a little bit of process, but essentially I *was* the company (and obviously I wasn’t willing to be a part of the sale).

After shopping it around to the very limited connections I thought might be interested, it became clear that what I had put together - while interesting and profitable as I ran it - was not easily transferrable nor worthy of most any price I would be willing to take. It was un-sellable.

Coming to that realization at the time was a bit painful, but I eventually came to accept it and instead slowly closed the company down so that I could focus on my other interests (and in finding a better fit for my personal strengths/talents).

I also learned first hand just how important building a company the right way, from the very beginning can be – through every stage including the final ones.

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This is the personal blog of Kevin Marshall (a.k.a Falicon) where he often digs into side projects he's working on for digdownlabs.com and other random thoughts he's got on his mind.

Kevin has a day job as CTO of Veritonic and is spending nights & weekends hacking on Share Game Tape. You can also check out some of his open source code on GitHub or connect with him on Twitter @falicon or via email at kevin at falicon.com.

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