37Signals sells Sortfolio before July 1 kill date

By , ITworld |  IT Management, 37signals, Jason Fried

Jason Fried

37Signals president Jason Fried

flickr/Jemima G

Sortfolio, an online showplace for Web designers, was put up for sale by 37Signals last May. If it didn't sell for $480,000, they would close the site.

Luckily, of the "over a dozen offers" 37 Signals reported getting for Sortfolio, one came to fruition. No details were given by 37Signals or president Jason Fried about the new owners, except that they are a "great team" and that they paid the full asking price. And the signup pages on Sortfolio have been turned back on, so new designers can join.

Sentiment from Sortfolio designers ran high, with many proclaiming the site their primary source of leads to new customers, and therefore their livelihood. Information now inside Sorfolio, such as credit card numbers and contact details, will transfer over to the new owners with no downtime. Second lease on life, anyone?

Excited

Great news! Can’t wait to meet the new owners.
Michael on 37signals.com

I'm happy Sortfolio has been acquired and plan to stick with the service.
gr366 on news.ycombinator.com

Nice job guys. Congrats on sticking to your guns and getting the price you felt was fair.
wilschroter on news.ycombinator.com

Selling details

We got a few direct inquiries on Flippa, but nothing got far enough to get close to an actual sale.
JF on 37signals.com

The "create a public good and hold it hostage" strategy pays off for @37signals
mdhopkins on topsy.com

Perhaps they already had a buyer in mind and just needed some negotiation leverage or wanted some free publicity.
shazow on news.ycombinator.com

Finally we can relax

You sold a company that was making money?? Don’t you know you’re supposed to be BURNING money and then sell for 100X your valuation??
Don Schenck on 37signals.com

Let the leads continue!
dhh on topsy.com

I think they simply had a buyer from the start, and offered to throw in some "37signals original flavor media spin" as a bonus.
moe on news.ycombinator.com

The last comment brings up an interesting point about playing the media. Did you know about Sortfolio before the sale stories started? If so, how and why?

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