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Interview Published June 3, 2000

David Hodess,

My interview today is with David Hodess of, based out of Pasadena. recently announced another round of venture capital funding, and I talked to him briefly about their plans and where they're going.

BK: I see that you just received another round of funding. What are your plans for (IPO, acquisition, staying private) and what kind of timeline do you have?

DH: We plan to invest a fair amount of the funds in customer service, infrastructure and content development. No word on when we plan to go public. We would like an IPO to be an option, maybe when the markets gets a little more friendly.

BK: What do you think is the most challenging part of the business?

DH: Managing incredibly fast growth while maintaining high quality standards and an excellent consumer experience.

BK: How is running an internet company different from your experience at Disney?

DH: The Internet changes so quickly. Every day there's a new challenge. While Disney was a great experience, it's on another level when compared to the fast-paced Internet industry. Every day there's a new development. We built from the ground up and we continue to evolve based on market and customer demands.

BK: Has the downturn in the public markets for e-commerce/B2C companies affected your strategy in running the business in any way?

DH: During times of market fluctuation, it's interesting to watch the players in this space. I think we are all managing our cash more conservatively than we did previously. In a friendly market, we may have considered an IPO, but not now. It's easier to build and run a business when you are private.

BK: Finally, what's the next big step for, and how are you getting there?

DH: We have a lot of exciting developments in the hopper, but it's too soon to begin speaking about these now. Look for some major partnership announcements in the near future.... Stay tuned.

BK: Thanks!

Copyright (c) 2001 by Benjamin F. Kuo. All rights reserved.
May not be reprinted without permission.