21-YEAR-OLD TELLS ALL: Here's How I Sold That Startup For $100 Million

Catherine Cook MyYearbookCatherine Cook cofounded MyYearbook when she was 15.

Last week, we reported that 21-year-old Catherine Cook sold her startup, MyYearbook, for $100 million to QuePasa.We got her and CEO Geoff Cook on the phone. They told us how they grew the company to a 9-figure exit in six years.

Siblings Catherine and David were new in their high school. They came up with an easy way to meet other students, MyYearbook.

The sophomore and junior began staying up until 3AM on school nights working with developers in Mumbai. Before MyYearbook, their curfew was 11.

Soon, Geoff Cook, Catherine and David's older brother, joined the MyYearbook team as CEO.

The first version of MyYearbook launched in April 2005. The first week, 400 people signed up because Catherine and Dave wore branded tracksuits to school.

MyYearbook launched at Montgomery High School in New Jersey. It began spreading to friends at other schools quickly. Nine months after launch, the site had 1 million users.

MyYearbook's rapid growth became too expensive for the siblings alone. They raised a $17 million Series A round from First Round Capital and US Venture Partners.

Despite the success of MyYearbook, Catherine and her brother went off to college. Professors let Catherine reschedule a bunch of mid-terms though.

Catherine, Dave and Geoff grew MyYearbook to 32 million users and $23.7 in revenue in six years. They wanted to grow internationally; QuePasa was a good solution.

QuePasa acquired MyYearbook for $100 million: $18 million in cash and $82 million in stock. Despite the merger, Geoff and Catherine say not much will change for MyYearbook.

For more successful young entrepreneurs, check out:

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