It’s been a pretty crazy summer for myself.. people ask me what I have been up to and how things are going, I rarely deviate from my standard answers: “Fantastic”, “Another day another dollar”, “Great”, etc. The answers seem pretty plain and un-descriptive. But I choose them on purpose for a couple reasons.
- Nobody “really” cares what you are doing and are asking just to be polite
- If they do care the certainly don’t want you to “throw-up” on them
- By stating my position as positive, regardless of the details, it further reinforces my reality of things being good, great, fantastic – and the business(s) doing well: making money.
Well there is certainly more to it than that.. so I present to the world some more details…
Our main business, obuweb, is chugging right along doing it’s thing. About 6-8 months ago we (Sally and I) made the decision to steer the company away from hardcore client services and more into internal app development. We do enjoy working with clients, but gain quite a bit more satisfaction working on our own stuff. I had the idea way back when I found obu (2003), to build a company/brand in which I could leverage the assets (human and dollars) to build other web businesses. And to that end we have intentionally kept the client list small these last few months, and have been directing our energy towards bestpartyever.com and flare9.com.
Also we recently segmented the SEO services provided by obu and moved them into more of a stand alone operation at obusearch.com. This was a business strategy decision as SEO is a very different animal than client service based web design.
Also we have been approached a few times in the last few months by other entities looking to acquire obuweb. This is fine by us as it is in line with our exit strategy, but we have really yet to receive any sort of offer/proposal that makes real sense to us. It is really hard to contemplate letting something go that you have have lived for the last 4-5 years, My identity seems to be a little wrapped up in the brand. Also the potential suitors have not been what I would call avant garde, in that they don’t quite really “get” what the web really is and where it is going…
BestPartyEver.com is in a very interesting place in that we are getting ready to push a new version live. Whats there currently works, and our seo marketing REALLY works, but it is all just the tip of the iceberg for what we have planned. Sally is considering seeking a small angel round to move things along faster.. but has not 100% decided if that is the best course. Will be interesting to see what happens in the next 5 months..
I also re-launched the development blog for bestpartyever.com to document the process as well as provide some glimpses of things to come. It is always a good idea to try and engage the tech crowd and early adopters, “prime the pump” as David Daniels says.
Flare9.com is in an interesting space.. I think our initial plan of going to other design shops and pushing flare9 as a alternative to doing the low-cost/low-yield websites themselves is not where the money it at. Everyone we have spoken to likes the system but has expressed interest in white-labeling it, in that they want their own branded flare9 solution. So that is the direction we are going with it. The core is just so flexible that doing so makes sense, and if that is what your customer wants, then why not.
It is making some money with a dozen or so users on it, but nowhere where it should be. Mostly due to the lack of energy I have put behind it in promoting it..
Focus: This has been my biggest hurdle of late. I have so many projects and interests going on that none of them seem to get the attention they need. This is pretty much related to capital resources on hand.. anyone have a few $million they want to provide.. I got some money makers…
Pete the Dog.. Pete is our Dalmatian who is now getting close to 11 years old.. This dog has more personality than 80% of the people I meet. He’s is slowing down and I am beginning to come to grips with the fact we only have a few more years left with him. Sally and I joke about stuffing him in some interesting position and keeping him around the house.
My Grandparents: they are getting old. My Nana on my moms side is 92 or something.. and as feisty as she is, unfortunately the years are getting to her.. My sister says she is has early stage alzheimer’s. My grandpa on my dad’s side, his health is also starting to go with bad kidneys. I guess the end is inevitable for everyone.. here is a quote from one of my favorite cheesy movies (Talladega nights) “With advances in modern medicine and my high level of income there is no reason why I shouldn’t live to be 200, 250..”
We have been trying to sell our house for quite a few months now. As most people know that market in PHX is “interesting” at this time. We want to move back to Scottsdale, closer to the office, and closer to the business community. We love our house and our neighborhood but I personally think we took ourselves “out of the action” by moving to a bedroom community in the burbs before we had kids, and before we were even 30. I feel like we gotta be in the scene, and in the action.
I have not been pursing much in the way of real estate investing as it just takes up a good chunk time to research everything, and I feel my time is better focused on our other projects
Racing.. Man this is my new drug. In high school/early college is was snowboarding, in late college it was Rugby.. now I am absolutely addicted to driving really really fast.. I cant get enough of it. It is a daily battle not to run around and drop $$$ on the bigger turbo, or grippier tires, or some other item that will make the audi go faster. I am telling myself to hold off as there will be plenty of time to for this over the next 40 years.. and it will be even more fun as I got more free time and a fatter wallet to indulge myself with.
Life goals.. I decided to drink the kool-aid and picked up a moleskin to keep track of personal thoughts a bit better. Seems everyday I have some new idea or 15 that should be written down. When I was 25 I set a goal to “retire” at 35 with at least a $10 million net-worth. I got 5.5 years to go and even though I have and are continuing to make some HUGE strides in that direction.. I feel like I have to turn it up if I am to get there by 35. Getting there is no longer good enough for me, I want to arrive in style.. $100 million is the number I am focused on now.
I want to get all this work stuff out of the way while I am young and have the energy to do it.. I see myself and Sally “retired” in a few years and starting a family, traveling, and focusing onto our primary goal of helping people and especially helping kids. What good is all that money of you don’t help people with it. Speaking of which, I think it is getting close to the yearly MDA charity thing obuweb does every year.
Personal development: Take a long look at yourself 10 years ago.. and take another long look at yourself today.. did you grow as much as you wanted to?
I have been on mission the last 5 years (started with reading a Rich Dad Poor Dad book) to “get my head out of my ass” as one could say. I can report that I have successfully extricated my cranium but there are still days that it just seems impossible to get out of my own way. So I have gone back to the fundementals and have been listening to some personal development CD’s during the long drive to and from the office… this week it was Tony Robbins, yea that guy..
And I have to say that one of the coolest things I have come accross this year was “What the Bleep!?, down the rabbit hole“. Talk about a mindf*ck.. great stuff in that movie.
I think thats enough of a brain dump… time to go wash the car.