Web 1.0 Memories - Zap.com

In the "where are they now?" category, we've decided to profile, from time to time, some of the most interesting stories of web 1.0, since by now, the events have faded in our minds like the memory of swinging on a tire on a long past summer day.

In this case, let's go back to 1998.

Internet portal Excite!, one of the original search powerhouses, received an unsolicited purchase offer by Fax for $1.68 billion from Zap.com, a new Internet portal in the making founded by Zapata, a company which derived 40% of its revenues from selling fish protein, but originally was in the oil business.

The entrepreneurs behind Zap.com were Malcolm and Avram Glazer, owners of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

While the purchase offer was rejected as folly, the Glazers motored on despite the ridicule from tech scribes to future successes such as buying the world's favorite football club, Manchester United in 2005.

The club has 300 million fans, 5% of the world's population, and is presently valued at 1.3 billion euros, a 10% annual return over the purchase price.

Meanwhile, Excite! didn't right itself as an independent entity, changing hands several times and ending up in the hands of Interactive Corp. Of that era, only Yahoo! survives.

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