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Turning Down Billions: Grading 15 Tech Companies that Declined Big Takeover Offers

Turning Down Billions: Grading 15 Tech Companies that Declined Big Takeover Offers

Turning Down Billions: Grading 15 Tech Companies that Declined Big Takeover Offers

If you were to ask legendary investor Peter Thiel about the most important moment in Facebook history, he would point to an exchange in July 2006.

Yahoo had made the lucrative offer of $1 billion for Facebook, and Peter Thiel as well as board member Jim Breyer got called into a meeting about the deal with Mark Zuckerberg.

“Both Breyer and myself on balance thought we probably should take the money,” recalls Thiel. “But Zuckerberg started the meeting like, ‘This is kind of a formality, just a quick board meeting, it shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes. We’re obviously not going to sell here’.”

Thiel and Breyer thought Facebook should take the money. Zuckerberg, who was 22 years old at the time, had so much conviction that Yahoo did not understand the value of the company, that he dismissed the meeting as just a formality. Thiel and Breyer eventually backed Zuckerberg based on this, and the decision paid giant dividends.

Facebook’s market capitalization is now $288 billion, or 288x the amount offered by Yahoo in 2006.

Today’s infographic recalls 15 offers to emerging tech companies that were declined. Then, looking back in retrospect, it shows whether the deal was a “win” or a “fail” based on the current value of the company.

Original graphic by: Empire Flippers

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