Changes at PodTech…

It’s interesting being part of a small company, PodTech, and watching and helping that company change direction. Yesterday we made some moves that are getting attention in the news. I wish Irina all the best.

I know I’m a bit opaque about what’s going on at PodTech. Not really very transparent of me, I know. But we’re becoming a more focused company and that leads to a whole range of things that I can’t yet share.

As with anything, if you have any questions, my phone number is 425-205-1921 and I’ll be happy to answer the questions, if I can.

Just for the record, I’m 100% committed to PodTech and the moves that John Furrier and the executive team is making and won’t reevaluate my career until Spring of 2008.

Irina is still a friend and will always be part of the PodTech family and I wish her all the best. Her humor still makes me laugh and she’s one of the most tied in people to the community I’ve ever known. If I wanted to know something about what people thought she’s the first person I’d go to for that.

98 thoughts on “Changes at PodTech…

  1. #47: yes, we spent that much and what did they get to in audience size? About 2,000 downloads per show. That’s not good enough for the investment we were making per show.

    #46: we succeeded in getting more funding than we had when I started the company, yes. But I’m not going to go more into it with you. It’s a private company and we don’t share our financials. Just like you don’t share your identity.

  2. #47: yes, we spent that much and what did they get to in audience size? About 2,000 downloads per show. That’s not good enough for the investment we were making per show.

    #46: we succeeded in getting more funding than we had when I started the company, yes. But I’m not going to go more into it with you. It’s a private company and we don’t share our financials. Just like you don’t share your identity.

  3. Not a layoff for financial reasons? Then clue John in on that, as he was blaming GETV for spending upwards of $500,000.

  4. Not a layoff for financial reasons? Then clue John in on that, as he was blaming GETV for spending upwards of $500,000.

  5. @45 Uhg! I’m still confused or your are being evasive. In @42 you suggest you don’t need a second round because life is rosey at PodTech. Then in @45 you suggest you DO need a second round, but perhaps not as much as what was reported. So, again, very simple: Did you succeed in getting a second round of funding?. Does that mean you weren’t seeking a second round? Or does that mean people kept walking when you held up your sign? I understand WHY a company would need more funding.

  6. @45 Uhg! I’m still confused or your are being evasive. In @42 you suggest you don’t need a second round because life is rosey at PodTech. Then in @45 you suggest you DO need a second round, but perhaps not as much as what was reported. So, again, very simple: Did you succeed in getting a second round of funding?. Does that mean you weren’t seeking a second round? Or does that mean people kept walking when you held up your sign? I understand WHY a company would need more funding.

  7. LayZ: we didn’t get a second round. Our investors gave us more first round money.

    Why need more money? To hire more engineers to build something interesting, but because revenues are up we don’t need as much as we thought.

  8. LayZ: we didn’t get a second round. Our investors gave us more first round money.

    Why need more money? To hire more engineers to build something interesting, but because revenues are up we don’t need as much as we thought.

  9. @43 “:So, why, again, do we need a second round at all?”

    Er..um… back @21 you said: “We also just got some more money. Not gonna tell you how much, or who gave it to us”

    So, care to answer your own question? Why did you need a second round at all?

  10. @43 “:So, why, again, do we need a second round at all?”

    Er..um… back @21 you said: “We also just got some more money. Not gonna tell you how much, or who gave it to us”

    So, care to answer your own question? Why did you need a second round at all?

  11. Also, you missed that our revenues are up and we don’t need more capital and we’re headed to cash-flow-positive this year. So, why, again, do we need a second round at all?

  12. Also, you missed that our revenues are up and we don’t need more capital and we’re headed to cash-flow-positive this year. So, why, again, do we need a second round at all?

  13. A VC: millions of dollars is “only a little more?” What kind of world do you live in? And why don’t you sign your name so we know what kind of biases you have and where you’re coming from?

  14. A VC: millions of dollars is “only a little more?” What kind of world do you live in? And why don’t you sign your name so we know what kind of biases you have and where you’re coming from?

  15. Robert: If you read what I said, my point was exactly that the current investors have only placed a little more into the company, rather than stepping up to do another full round

  16. Robert: If you read what I said, my point was exactly that the current investors have only placed a little more into the company, rather than stepping up to do another full round

  17. A VC: the current investors HAVE stepped up and given us more money. Check your facts before you continue to report inuendo.

    This was not a layoff for financial reasons. Thanks for calling me and asking me the facts. My phone number is 425-205-1921 but its easier to make shit up. Thanks for playing the game!

  18. A VC: the current investors HAVE stepped up and given us more money. Check your facts before you continue to report inuendo.

    This was not a layoff for financial reasons. Thanks for calling me and asking me the facts. My phone number is 425-205-1921 but its easier to make shit up. Thanks for playing the game!

  19. Podtech had a short injection to keep them going while they continue to try and raise their next round. They have been busy touring Sand Hill Road for a while and not had anybody commit. If we were to believe Podtech, then the current investors would have already stepped up and flushed the company with money to further grow the business, you wouldn’t be laying off people who were the face of the company.

    It is utterly and completely misleading that John tells the blogs that they have ‘millions’ left, simple math will tell you that they have burnt through most of what they raised and have spent far far too much on acquiring ‘talent’ and putting on shows.

    Podtech will be cleaning house soon.

  20. Podtech had a short injection to keep them going while they continue to try and raise their next round. They have been busy touring Sand Hill Road for a while and not had anybody commit. If we were to believe Podtech, then the current investors would have already stepped up and flushed the company with money to further grow the business, you wouldn’t be laying off people who were the face of the company.

    It is utterly and completely misleading that John tells the blogs that they have ‘millions’ left, simple math will tell you that they have burnt through most of what they raised and have spent far far too much on acquiring ‘talent’ and putting on shows.

    Podtech will be cleaning house soon.

  21. Jeff: I put in more hours than any single human being should do, even at a startup (you do notice we’re both online on Friday night, right?). If you haven’t seen it, I publish more video than any other single person in the tech journalism industry. I do more Google Feed Reads than any single person in the world (according to Google). I am online nearly every waking moment and participate in thousands of places online. I also speak around the world, manage to find time to attend lots of blogger and developer events. Not to mention internal PodTech meetings and events.

    It’s still not a marriage.

    But I’m very vested in PodTech and pouring my energy into the business.

    I disagree, by the way. A good employee sits down every once in a while to evaluate where their career is going. Even one in a startup. In fact at Microsoft they FORCE you to do just that at least once a year.

  22. Jeff: I put in more hours than any single human being should do, even at a startup (you do notice we’re both online on Friday night, right?). If you haven’t seen it, I publish more video than any other single person in the tech journalism industry. I do more Google Feed Reads than any single person in the world (according to Google). I am online nearly every waking moment and participate in thousands of places online. I also speak around the world, manage to find time to attend lots of blogger and developer events. Not to mention internal PodTech meetings and events.

    It’s still not a marriage.

    But I’m very vested in PodTech and pouring my energy into the business.

    I disagree, by the way. A good employee sits down every once in a while to evaluate where their career is going. Even one in a startup. In fact at Microsoft they FORCE you to do just that at least once a year.

  23. “I’m not married to PodTech. Glad you think that business is marriage. ”

    working for a startup, especially somebody at the VP level, should be seen like a marriage. A startup wont succeed unless every employee is fully invested and strongly believes in the vision and pours every ounce of their energy into the business. You give it 100%, as soon as you start thinking about what you might do next, then I am sorry to say that all is already lost.

    Do you think early Google, Yahoo, Microsoft etc. employees and directors thought the same way? Damn no, they all had their sights set on only one thing.

  24. “I’m not married to PodTech. Glad you think that business is marriage. ”

    working for a startup, especially somebody at the VP level, should be seen like a marriage. A startup wont succeed unless every employee is fully invested and strongly believes in the vision and pours every ounce of their energy into the business. You give it 100%, as soon as you start thinking about what you might do next, then I am sorry to say that all is already lost.

    Do you think early Google, Yahoo, Microsoft etc. employees and directors thought the same way? Damn no, they all had their sights set on only one thing.

  25. Or they could spend all the new cash on a promotion frenzy and hope they hit the IPO threshold on bailout.
    That’s more the silicon valley way.

  26. Or they could spend all the new cash on a promotion frenzy and hope they hit the IPO threshold on bailout.
    That’s more the silicon valley way.

  27. “A NPO in Palo Alto?? You on drugs?”

    I’m not on drugs. But at least as a NPO they could take flat out tax deductible donations.
    PBS is still in business after 35+ years doing that and they have way more than 30 employees.

    Switching to a non-profit doesn’t mean Scoble can’t earn 150k per year or whatever. It just means you’re capped as far as “net” income is concerned or that you are forced to reinvest it.

    Since the money’s already gone, the least they could do if they don’t make it back on this round of investments or loans is to simply switch to NPO status and keep the lights on and keep the people employed. I know that’s not the silicon valley way, but the silicon valley way is not stable.

  28. “A NPO in Palo Alto?? You on drugs?”

    I’m not on drugs. But at least as a NPO they could take flat out tax deductible donations.
    PBS is still in business after 35+ years doing that and they have way more than 30 employees.

    Switching to a non-profit doesn’t mean Scoble can’t earn 150k per year or whatever. It just means you’re capped as far as “net” income is concerned or that you are forced to reinvest it.

    Since the money’s already gone, the least they could do if they don’t make it back on this round of investments or loans is to simply switch to NPO status and keep the lights on and keep the people employed. I know that’s not the silicon valley way, but the silicon valley way is not stable.

  29. You need a lawyer, treasurer, secretary, vice president, president, CTO, CFO, ect… at least 3 more for 30 employees.
    Typo.

  30. You need a lawyer, treasurer, secretary, vice president, president, CTO, CFO, ect… at least 3 more for 30 employees.
    Typo.

  31. “Chris: we have more than 30 employees at PodTech.”

    Say you have 35.
    Say your employees made what most of ours make. $48,000 USD per year. Doing quick math that would mean that Podtech sinks $1,680,000 per year in Salaries.

    Now add 100k per board member at a low amount, 5 board members including Scoble.

    that’s $2,680,000. Scoble and other’s travel expenses and entry fees: $500,000 per year

    You’re already up to $3,180,000
    and you haven’t even paid for the office space or the phone bills yet.

    PodtechNetworks got 5.5M in venture cap. They are probably blowing close to 3.5M per year. Not to mention bandwidth costs for streaming all that video. Youtube was losing 1M per month on that alone, sourced by the WSJ article on YouTube.

    “We got $5.5 million more than a year ago. We still have some of that left. We also just got some more money. Not gonna tell you how much, or who gave it to us”

    I bet you don’t have very much left. If the usage stats and the way PodtechNetworks spent the original 5.5M is any indicator, whoever loaned you the additional running cash should maybe consider it as a grant rather than a loan.

    Why didn’t you guys just start a NPO?
    That would have solved a lot of problems.

  32. “Chris: we have more than 30 employees at PodTech.”

    Say you have 35.
    Say your employees made what most of ours make. $48,000 USD per year. Doing quick math that would mean that Podtech sinks $1,680,000 per year in Salaries.

    Now add 100k per board member at a low amount, 5 board members including Scoble.

    that’s $2,680,000. Scoble and other’s travel expenses and entry fees: $500,000 per year

    You’re already up to $3,180,000
    and you haven’t even paid for the office space or the phone bills yet.

    PodtechNetworks got 5.5M in venture cap. They are probably blowing close to 3.5M per year. Not to mention bandwidth costs for streaming all that video. Youtube was losing 1M per month on that alone, sourced by the WSJ article on YouTube.

    “We got $5.5 million more than a year ago. We still have some of that left. We also just got some more money. Not gonna tell you how much, or who gave it to us”

    I bet you don’t have very much left. If the usage stats and the way PodtechNetworks spent the original 5.5M is any indicator, whoever loaned you the additional running cash should maybe consider it as a grant rather than a loan.

    Why didn’t you guys just start a NPO?
    That would have solved a lot of problems.

  33. I just want to say, despite the differences in direction that GETV and PodTech are moving, Irina and I are both grateful for our time at PodTech. We learned a lot, had many interesting experiences, worked with some very smart people and got to travel to exotic places like Las Vegas and Palo Alto. :)

  34. I just want to say, despite the differences in direction that GETV and PodTech are moving, Irina and I are both grateful for our time at PodTech. We learned a lot, had many interesting experiences, worked with some very smart people and got to travel to exotic places like Las Vegas and Palo Alto. :)

  35. @22 Okay, makes sense. Thanks for clarifying…

    @21. I’m still a bit confused on you saying the facts are wrong. Are you saying PodTech wasn’t seeking $5.5MM in this round of begging…er..I mean..fund raising? If so then I see your point. If you set out to beg..I mean, raise $5.5MM and got less..well…not wrong.

  36. @22 Okay, makes sense. Thanks for clarifying…

    @21. I’m still a bit confused on you saying the facts are wrong. Are you saying PodTech wasn’t seeking $5.5MM in this round of begging…er..I mean..fund raising? If so then I see your point. If you set out to beg..I mean, raise $5.5MM and got less..well…not wrong.

  37. I never told you anything about the company’s business that they didn’t want discussed in public.

    Amazing admission. Well then you were nothing more than marketing, even if not “confidential”, if you only talked about what they wanted discussed, that’s nowhere near a ‘naked conversation’.

    I believe in what you say, not what you do.

    In the meantime, can reach me at Myspace, Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo Groups, Google Groups, Ustream, Powence, Flickr, Youtube, Meetup, 30Boxes, Wikia, Ning, Blogtv, KyleTV…

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