Google acquires Sketchup

Google announced they are acquiring @Last Software. If you are interested in design and CAD software you are no doubt familiar with Sketchup, an amazing program that reminded me of Corel Draw! because of it's ability to fundamentally change what design software was, much like Corel did for illustration software years ago.  

I don't know what Google has up their sleeve for this product, but it's a break from their previous acquisitions. Sketchup is a serious piece of software, which isn't to say that their previous acquisitions weren't, but think of the difference between Microsoft Paint and Autodesk… Google just bought the equivalent of Autodesk. Sketchup, which is an application not a service like Writely, is also targeted at design professionals and architects, a group of people who wouldn't think twice about coughing up $500 a seat for a tool, which is what Sketchup sold for. I wonder if the Google Earth plugin for Sketchup had anything to do with this? 

If I may humbly offer a suggestion it would be to offer Sketchup for free :)

Official Google Blog: A new home for @Last Software When I went to sleep last night, I was employed by a small start-up called @Last Software. This morning, although I’m going to the same office, sitting at the same desk, and seeing the same people, I’m going to work as a Google employee. (Here’s the official announcement.)

Acquisitions group buys Jamba Juice chain

A lot of people don't realize that Jamba Juice was funded by some of the best known venture firms in the Valley, including August, Trinity, Benchmark, and Oak. With the first round done 12 years ago one has to wonder if they would do it again, although strong capital gains can usually make up for a lot of heartache. Speaking of capital gains, it's really hard to know given that the liquidations preferences are known only to the insiders, but with $150m invested in the company and it being sold for $265m it would appear to be a modest gain given the amount of time gone into the deal.

MercuryNews.com | 03/14/2006 | Acquisitions group buys Jamba Juice chain Berrard-led Services Acquisition said it is paying $265 million for the privately held Jamba Juice. The chain — which opened its first location in 1990 — reported $345 million of sales last year at its 532 locations nationwide.

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