Last night, the news broke that the social network for the business set, LinkedIn, just raised a $53 million Series C round from investors at a stunning $1 billion valuation. More interesting to me (considering rumors of the valuation surfaced months ago), is the YouTube video that LinkedIn’s investors created to accompany the news.
In it, you’ll see Jeff Glass of Bain Capital — which led the $53 million financing — David Sze of Greylock Partners, Mark Kvamme of Sequoia Capital, and David Cowan of Bessemer Venture Partners heap so much praise on LinkedIn, and on themselves for identifying this “multibillion opportunity,” that watching the video reminded me of a late-night infomercial. (Not the pornographic kind. The kind where you end up with some crap abdominal cruncher because seemingly respectable people testified that it had given them six-pack stomachs and in your fatigued state, you believed them.)
I could only make it through the first three minutes and nine seconds of the five-minute-long production, creatively titled “Bain Capital Ventures Joins the LinkedIn Team.” But
Hey, even if that proves not to be the case, “it’s not about the price tag but the value of the asset you’re investing in and what you think the opportunity is for upside.” After all, we are talking about a company with “three revenue streams and a couple more coming on,” “each of which is several billion dollars in size,” thanks to LinkedIn’s status as “by far the dominant player.”
As absurd as the video is, I understand that this is a vehicle to get out those details that LinkedIn’s backers want to disclose while also heading off many reporters’ press requests. I just hope that it isn’t a medium that’s here to stay — not unless videos like this one are aired on cable TV late at night, when I am fast asleep. (The ab cruncher? Come and gone long ago.)