Paul Allen, Internet Entrepreneur

by : gibbybart

Paul Allen, with partners, has founded two Inc. 500 companies MyFamily and Infobases, Inc. He focuses on internet-based businesses because the internet has been where has spent most of his time in knowledge acquisition. He has mentioned to me personally that most people invest in what they know.

He enjoys innovation and his name can be found on three patented applications. Paul believes in improving the world through business enterprises, pioneering the future.

Paul has recently turned his InfoBase Ventures Company he founded as a business incubator in 2002 into Provo Labs complete with new partners and new funding. Provo Labs is an incubator for Web 2.0 internet companies. Focusing on building companies, Provo Labs combines content, community, and technology in innovative ways to solve problems for customers.

From 1990-1997 he was CEO of Infobases (a religion-based CD-ROM publisher) and CEO of Ancestry from 1997-1998. Infobases at its highest point had more than 150,000 households using their products. He incubated the idea that helped to revolutionize the way families used and viewed the internet through private family web sites, this idea was called MyFamily.

More than 1 million users logged into the MyFamily service in only 140 days. It?s no wonder that the founding team was awarded the Ernst & Young 2000 Entrepreneur of the Year award and was named Viral Marketing company of the year by Technology Marketing magazine.

Paul likes to work with "Smart Money?, and is always on the lookout to find Angel and Venture Capital firms that invest in internet-based companies. He enjoys working closely with them and seems to soak in all the knowledge he can gather from them.

Paul has taught at Utah Valley State College and at Brigham Young University, teaching internet business formation and internet marketing. He has become a very popular speaker throughout Utah, at business schools and internet conferences around the country and has even helped to found social networking groups, such as the Utah Valley Entrepreneur Forum.

During 20 months in Silicon Valley Paul opened a MyFamily office in San Francisco from 2000 to 2001 in which he served various capacities. While he was Vice President of Corporate Development he was a key deal maker in M&A opening the doors to the acquisitions of Ah-ha and Rootsweb.

He then used his negotiation skills to fund another round of funding for MyFamily in 2001. Returning to Utah he became the VP of Marketing, managing a budget of $600,000 per month. In 2004 MyFamily reached a gross revenue of $123 million and is still very profitable today.

Paul left MyFamily in 2002 and started several companies under his Infobase Ventures, now Provo Labs, umbrella. Such companies are 10xMarketing which he sold in 2005 for an undisclosed amount. WebEvident, iCount, FundingUniverse, WorldHistory, LDSAudio, LDSMedia, and several others. Again, he has also negotiated several acquisitions such as MP3books, and another one which was undisclosed.

He really enjoys writing, blogging, and writes a column for Utah?s Connect Magazine, a magazine for established and emerging entrepreneurs. More than 3,000 books lace his personal library at home and he enjoys audio books while driving in his car. He is an advocate of knowledge acquisition and it is what he believes gives him his edge in the market place, in the office, finding funding, and social networking.

Paul?s personal mission is to change the world, making it a better place through entrepreneurship; using Alexander Graham Bell, Pierre Omidyar, Bill Gross, and Benjamin Franklin as examples and inspiration for his life?s vision.

Paul has given his favorite business book to more than 50 people, "Love is the Killer App? written by Tim Sanders, which taught Paul the following: (1) gain all the knowledge he can, sharing it freely; (2) gain the best social network he can, sharing it freely; and (3) love and serve everyone he can.