announced tonight that it has been purchased by Intuit for $170m. In addition to Intuit's personal and small business accounting software, and the company's partnership with Google to integrate services like Maps listing and AdSense buys, Intuit customers will now presumably be able to put up websites quickly and easily with Homestead. It's starting to look like an end-to-end service, putting Intuit's hands in the middle of a whole lot of businesses books, both virtual and otherwise.Small business website creation service Homestead
Homestead released support for Macs and AJAX last year, but it this small business website creation software being scooped up as a hot commodity? Probably not like it would have been had the deal gone through during the late 1990s. Homestead raised money from Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Intel in 1998, then $17.5 million in a 1999 second round , another $10 million from Verisign and others in 2001, and $5.4 million more in 2002. So we're talking at least $35m in funding over multiple rounds and almost 10 years. It's at best a 5X exit but probably one that everyone is relieved to see happen. It's also a good example that even with an undeniably smart business model, loads of backing and the ability to survive the first bubble - a company like Homestead can take ten years to see an exit.