Yahoo Acquires Vizify, the Social Data Visualization Start-up

Yahoo finalized the purchase of Vizify last week, a data visualization start-up that turns social media content into infographics and video. With Vizify, users could create visualized resumes, host them on Vizify domains, and access analytics in the back-end. Vizify announced that users could archive their bios and will be able to keep their domains, even though they’re shuttering their services and providing refunds to current customers.

vizifyyahooAlong with this customer information, Vizify announced the acquisition in a blog post, and its team sounds optimistic about what the future will look like.

As part of the transition to Yahoo, we will be sunsetting the Vizify service. As for what’s next, we can’t talk specifics just yet, but we’re excited to bring a more visual approach to data at Yahoo. We have a lot more up our sleeves and can’t wait to get started.

Despite their optimism, many wonder if this move spells doom for the little start-up. ReadWrite described Yahoo as the “Start-up Destroyer”, as 31 out of 38 start-ups that Marissa Mayer has acquired have been shut down; no wonder Tumblr and Imgur users started shaking in their boots when Yahoo took interest in them!

Why All the Acquisitions?

An article published last month by BGR listed out the companies that Yahoo had acquired since Marissa Mayer took their reigns, and is already outdated with this recent purchase. Similarly, this article by Mashable was written in July, when Mayer had only acquired a paltry 20 start-ups. Mashable explained what happened to the apps, the team, and how much they cost. A lot of the apps were actually purchased for less than $10 million, but that’s not the interesting part.

App acquisition is essentially how Yahoo hires top talent. The company acquires an app, immediately shuts it down, and then moves the team to its mobile or mail or small business departments where their knowledge and skills are put to good use developing Yahoo products. Yes, one aspect of the app might be integrated into Yahoo’s service, but overall it’s left in the dust and their developers become cogs in the great machine.

It’s a Rough World for a Start-up

It seems like getting acquired by a major company like Yahoo would be the dream for most start-ups. All of your hard work pays off to the tune of at least $6 million, and you have job security at your new parent company. However, even if your app isn’t immediately shut down, there are still ways that your product can get run into the ground. We Are Hunted learned that the hard way with Twitter.

wearehunted1If you don’t remember We Are Hunted, it was the music start-up that Twitter acquired a year ago to develop it’s #Music app. The app launched last March, and quickly fell in popularity after a brief rise in the app store. After failing to steal any market share from Pandora, Spotify, or even YouTube, Twitter shut down #Music in October. Therein lies the rise and fall of We Are Hunted, which was doomed the minute Twitter wrote it a check.

So Long, Vizify

In the next few months, Vizify will become another notch in Yahoo’s belt. Yahoo could genuinely plan to incorporate the team’s skills to create more visual representation of social media data, but Vizify as we all knew it will never look the same again.

And to the Vizify customers left to remain in the ashes of this acquisition, all is not lost. There are other companies that’d be thrilled to create infographics and interactive media with you.

To celebrate Vizify’s acquisition, for this week only we’re offering 10% off on all CopyPress infographic and interactive digital media services; just contact us here & mention #Vizify in the message box.

About the author

Amanda Dodge