Home Accoona, Once Pretender to Search Throne… Now Niche B2B Service

Accoona, Once Pretender to Search Throne… Now Niche B2B Service

According to the Zuula blog, former search king pretender Accoona has finally given up on becoming a major search player. When Accoona was officially launched in December 2004, at a ceremony featuring Bill Clinton, Accoona claimed to have search technology that would be “more efficient than the likes of Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft’s MSN.” Accoona was built using “artificial intelligence technology to derive the meaning of words typed into a search.” Sadly for them, it fizzed and their expected IPO never happened.

Accoona’s new focus is on business search and news search. More from Zuula here:

Although it never reached the search engine “major leagues”, Accoona was a serious minor-league player for several years.  The service was launched almost four years ago at a major PR event attended by former president Bill Clinton, who reportedly carried out the first public search on the service.  Investments totaling as much as $100 million apparently were made to ensure that the service was backed by the best technology (and, of course, marketing).  And, if memory serves, the site even managed to garner a decent — if not earth shattering – amount of traffic in its first year or two.

At some point, though, Accoona’s fortunes took a wrong turn.  The quality of its search results didn’t meet expectations.  There were accusations of inappropriate marketing tactics on behalf of the search engine and inappropriate sales techniques by affiliated websites.  All of this — and more — ended up in a New York Times article last August that was far from flattering.

It wasn’t much of a surprise, then, when the Accoona announced late last year that it was halting its plans for an IPO.

It also wasn’t a surprise to most search industry veterans when word started leaking out over the past few months that Accoona was downsizing and considering alternative strategies for its business. […] Today, Accoona quietly unveiled its new strategy, and web search apparently is not part of that strategy.  Instead, the new focus is on business search and news search.

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