Paypal Buys Braintree For $800M In Cash And All I Got Was This Story
It’s official, Paypal has acquired Braintree for $800M in cash. Congrats to Bryan Johnson, Braintree’s founder and a former client of mine. I met Bryan back in 2003 when he was working on a real estate development in Sandy, Utah. I still remember where I was a few years later when he was starting Braintree and called me to talk about maybe helping out with some marketing for the fledgling company. As I got mail from my PO box and cradled my cellphone against my shoulder, I told him it sounded interesting, but I was pretty busy. Maybe he should set up an affiliate program or a blog or something.
When Braintree started they didn’t take on small clients, except for me. Back then I dealt directly with Bryan. A year or two later I read about Braintree having companies like 37signals and OpenTable as clients. That’s the first moment I realized I had probably made a mistake in not helping Bryan out. Then there were the huge rounds of venture financing, and an email from Bryan when he was looking for a COO a year or two ago. I could see the writing on the wall. Founder gracefully bows out as VCs replace him with seasoned executive team in preparation for acquisition or IPO. Now this. Well, as Guy Kawasaki says about turning down the CEO role at Yahoo, “It’s not the billion dollars I would have made that bothers me, it’s the second billion dollars.”