Indeed.com just might be the most fabulously successful company that nobody talks about. Plenty of people have heard of it, and plenty of people certainly use it: it’s the biggest search engine for jobs. It’s also the biggest jobs site in the world by unique visitors, ahead of publicly-traded Monster.com.
Like Google, it makes money from search advertising: employers pay to have their jobs listings show up on top of searches for jobs. It’s better for them than paying for listings on jobs sites, because they pay only for clicks and applicants go directly to their site.
And we imagine that like Google’s, Indeed’s search revenue is very good. It’s using the best online business model in history (search advertising), in one of the most highly-monetizable verticals (jobs). The company last raised money in 2005, so it has to be profitable.
In an interview with Mixergy, über-VC Fred Wilson called Indeed “one of the secrets” of Union Square Ventures. In a recent blog post, he called it “possibly the best all around company in our portfolio.” When you know that portfolio includes Twitter, Foursquare and Zynga (i.e. possibly the most profitable company on Earth), that’s saying something.
Indeed is also impressive because of the people it’s beaten. It’s not a Silicon Valley company, it’s based in Stamford, CT and Austin, TX. The Silicon Valley company that was supposed to be Indeed is called SimplyHired. It’s raised $22.3 million from Valley stars like Ron Conway to Indeed’s $5 million, was founded almost a year beforehand according to CrunchBase (though was launched later), and yet lags far behind. Nobody remembers now but when Indeed started growing Yahoo tried to crush them by getting into jobs search and that also went nowhere.
So, to summarize: Indeed is the category leader in one of the most profitable verticals in the internet. And no one talks about them.
Well, now it’s fixed.
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