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July 2, 2013

Bebo founders repurchase site for $1million

Two of the founders of social networking site Bebo have bought back the site for $1million.

By Duncan Macrae

Shaan Puri

Michael and Xochi Birch announed that their angel investment company reacquired in an auction following a Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing by previous owners Criterion Capital Partners.

The Birches famously grew the social network’s user base to 40 million before selling the company to AOL in 2008 for $850M.

Bebo will be revamped by Michael and Xochi Birch’s idea lab, The Monkey Inferno, where their team of 21 engineers, designers and product people will step in to breathe new life into the site.

Monkey Inferno CEO Shaan Puri said that, while they will not be announcing their plans for Bebo just yet, they do have a message for Bebo users.

"We’re excited about the ambitious challenge of bringing Bebo back, and couldn’t be happier to announce that the product will be back in the hands of the founders," Puri explained.

The social network, once famous for its high engagement, at one point had users spending an average of more than 40 minutes a day on the site.

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"We know the odds are stacked against us, but we love challenges and the Bebo users deserve better than what they have received the past few years," added Puri.

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