The Smartest Tech Startup Acquisitions Ever Companies
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The Smartest Tech Startup Acquisitions Ever

Innovative new tech companies are regularly gobbled up by larger competitors, or even just other companies that are looking to add on a new product, feature or offering but don't want to build it from scratch in-house. Large companies - and even some smaller companies with a lot of cash on hand or valuable stock - can have a variety of reasons for purchasing a new startup or competitor, Sometimes, the acquisition is largely about the talent behind a new product. Other times, the goal is to eliminate a competitor from the market and consolidate the audience in one place. Often, these acquisitions end with the smaller, acquired company completely disappearing inside the parent organization, and even the initial product that spurned the purchase disappearing along with the team responsible for it. On other occasions, acquired products retain their own identity within the parent organization and live on as independent offerings. It all largely depends on the intention the new company has for its recently-acquired colleagues and tech, and how well the two companies and their cultures integrate together post-acquisition.

The companies on this list were all acquired by larger, older or more profitable companies, and the acquisition has been judged a "success" by the Ranker Community. If you feel a company that made a great addition to a team or pre-existing product has been left out, enter it at the bottom of the page.

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  1. 18
    Up 8
    Down 12

    Carl de Marcken, Dave Baggett Acquired by Google in 2010

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  2. 10
    Up 23
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    Caterina Fake Acquired by Yahoo in 2005.

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  3. 1
    Up 89
    Down 15

    Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, Ken Howery Acquired by eBay in 2002

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  4. 2
    Up 90
    Down 16

    Jawed Karim, Chad Hurley, Steve Chen Acquired by Google in 2006

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  5. 22
    Up 8
    Down 37

    Jeff Hawkins Acquired by HP in 2010

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  6. 8
    Up 34
    Down 31

    Joseph Gavin, Paul Gavin Motorola Mobility acquired by Google in 2011

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  7. 11
    Up 21
    Down 23

    Kenneth Lerer, Arianna Huffington Acquired by AOL in 2011

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  8. 5
    Up 31
    Down 19

    Nick Swinmurn Acquired by Amazon in 2009

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  9. 7
    Up 39
    Down 33

    Niklas Zennström, Janus Friis Acquired by Microsoft in 2011. (Previously acquired by eBay in 2005.)

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  10. 6
    Up 31
    Down 19

    Omar Hamoui Acquired by Google in 2009

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  11. 15
    Up 13
    Down 15

    Ronald Rivest Acquired by Symantec in 2010

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  12. 4
    Up 44
    Down 22

    Steve Jobs NeXT was founded in 1985 by Steve Jobs and acquired by Apple in 1996.

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  13. 9
    Up 31
    Down 31

    Vinod Khosla, Vaughan Ronald Pratt, Andy Bechtolsheim Acquired by Oracle in 2009

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  14. 12
    Up 12
    Down 12

    Acquired by Google in 2003

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  15. 14
    Up 7
    Down 7

    Crescendo Networks Acquired by Cisco in 1993

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  16. 20
    Up 10
    Down 17

    Diapers.com

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  17. 17
    Up 6
    Down 9

    Atebits

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  18. 13
    Up 13
    Down 14

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  19. 21
    Up 27
    Down 43

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  20. 19
    Up 7
    Down 11

    new! & added by Randolph Tweetdeck

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  21. 16
    Up 4
    Down 5

    added by pingdom C3 Technologies

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  22. 3
    Up 76
    Down 13

    Android Acquired by Google in 2005

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  23. 23 +

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