SEOmoz, Jobs, Zillow: Your 1-Minute Guide to the Past Week in Seattle Tech

8/30/11Follow @curtwoodward

Rand Fishkin, the CEO of Seattle search-marketing software company SEOmoz, is known for his extensive blog posts that lift the curtain on running a startup company. But the amount of transparency he showed recently wowed even longtime observers, as Fishkin laid out an extremely open tale of a possible new round of venture capital. We rounded up the whole thing with this interview and Storify timeline, and wrapped it up yesterday, after Fishkin disclosed that the deal had fallen apart under somewhat odd circumstances.

Steve Jobs‘ abrupt resignation as CEO of Apple led to a long round of remembrances and anecdotes, a remarkable outpouring rarely seen for a corporate executive. I stumbled upon one tale of a close encounter with the man himself via Twitter, where Seattle PR executive Kevin Pedraja mentioned the time Jobs responded to Pedraja’s irate customer message with a weekend phone call. It’s a tale previously told, but worth revisiting.

Zillow (NASDAQ: Z) reported its first quarterly earnings as a public company, showing an honest-to-goodness profit for the first time. It wasn’t a huge profit—$1.6 million in earnings, on $15.8 million in revenue. But growth was strong, and the profit was a big positive. CEO Spencer Rascoff also went into detail with analysts, including Zillow’s prediction that the national housing market won’t reach bottom until next year.

We rounded up the equity deals for Washington-based companies from July, and no surprise here: the $37 million round for traffic-data company Inrix easily led the way, accounting for more than a third of the venture money raised last month in the state. Varolii, Lucid Commerce, PayScale, and Yapta rounded out the top five.

Xconomy’s Wade Roush took us on a tour through the sea of photo-storage services on the Web, wondering why Flickr has given up so much ground as others have tried to push the boundaries: Google+, Apple’s iCloud, and a startup called Snapjoy. What about Facebook, which has the lion’s share of our online photos? “Facebook doesn’t actually care about photos. It only cares about the people who appear in them,” Wade writes, pointing out that tools for processing and displaying the images are secondary to tagging and sharing functions.

Finally, a bit of personnel news: Maveron, the consumer-focused VC firm co-founded by Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, has promoted former Zynga executive Andrew Trader to partner. Trader had been an entrepreneur in residence at the firm, which has offices in San Francisco and Seattle, since last fall.

Curt Woodward is a senior editor for Xconomy based in Boston. Email: cwoodward@xconomy.com Follow @curtwoodward

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  • joseph

    Its an interesting point – can a software solution be flexible enough for varying sites?
    There are some commonalities between industries, ie no matter what industry the most important off site ranking factor remains incoming links. There is also the issue that some services (I’m sure yours excluded!) are the same regardless of industry.
    So far the best hosted seo software ive used is yahoos site explorer (http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/) and the best desktop is ignite seo (http://igniteresearch.net) – neither of which I had to pay for!