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Zapoint Buys Jobster

by Apr 5, 2010, 6:22 pm ET

Jobster, the company most famous for burning through almost $55 million in venture capital while it searched for a business model, has been sold to Zapoint.

An excited  Chris Twyman, Zapoint’s founder and CEO, told me the acquisition fills a void in his company’s portfolio. By acquiring Jobster’s 800,000 profiles and, especially, its 250,000-280,000 active users, Zapoint simultaneously fills a void in its own talent network and it gains the data to enhance its external skills mapping.

Zapoint is a talent management and career-mapping service that enables employers to see the strengths and weaknesses in their organization, based on internal employee profiles. Its free skills assessment tools allow career-oriented users to map their skills, background, and career progress and compare themselves to their industry peers. The profiles users complete become part of Zapoint’s Talent Network, which is searchable by recruiters.

The Jobster acquisition greatly expands the talent pool and the number and type of career maps users can see.

“We are really strong on the working side,” Twyman explained, meaning profiles and assessments completed by employees of client firms. “But we need to grow on the external side.”

Twyman, and Zapoint Chief Marketing Officer Keith Woodward, said Jobster would continue as a separate, consumer-facing brand. Zapoint will become the b-to-b site for its employer tools.

Though Jobster began in 2004 as a jobs referral program, leveraging the social and business connections of company workers to fill jobs, it went through a number of DNA changes and very public struggles. Today, it is fundamentally a job board with a strong social networking and community overlay. Users not only have a standard resume, but they can have a Facebook-like profile and connect with other people on the site.

Twyman said Jobster’s social component was part of the attraction. “It’s an integrated social networking site with profiles that are complementary with what we are doing.”

Zapoint intends to add its career mapping tools to the site and thus “rejuvenate” it.

Jeff Seely, CEO of Jobster and companion company, a talent acquisition CRM provider, couldn’t be reached. (The company changed its name last year to, a site it bought in 2006 when was a blog. However, TechCrunch, which brought the story of the Jobster sale, said Seely will remain in Seattle with

This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to offer specific legal advice. You should consult your legal counsel regarding any threatened or pending litigation.

  • Maureen Sharib

    If I may be so gauche as to ask, “How much?”

  • Michael Black

    At this point it more like a “Who Cares?” Isn’t Jobster irrelevant in recruitment circles?

  • John Zappe

    Apologies, Maureen. I thought I had mentioned in the article that the selling price was not disclosed. But I can tell you that Chris Twyman said they paid “less” – way less – than the total invested in Jobster.

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  • Dennis Gorelik

    It would be really interesting to learn about the price of purchase.
    But whatever it is — it’s either too low for original investors (does recovering few cents on invested dollar make sense?), or too high for Zapoint (so Zapoint would be next in line of investors who lost money on Jobster).

  • David Manaster

    @Dennis I think that making a few cents on the dollar is infinitely preferable to investors over losing it all. That said, I doubt this is the outcome that any of them hoped for.

    My question: What assets remain at the new

  • Dennis Gorelik

    @David: it could be mentally painful to accept 90%+ loss of investment on such a sale.
    But I agree that objectively it makes sense to recover at least few cents on invested dollar.

    Jobster’s and’s trends don’t look optimistic for investors:

    Note that Jobster has declining, but significantly higher traffic than Zapoint itself.

  • Jeff Altman

    When was the last time anyone discussed Jobster? this is like reminiscing about RCA . . . a walk in memory lane to what was, what could have been and what it became and the disconnect between the all. Jobster believed it knew what the market needed . . . at a high price, to boot. Last time I noticed, most 3rd party firms are, how do I say this delicately?


    And corporations were unwilling to spend on unproven technology.

    I still have my Jobster and my bogus friends. Prior to the email I received from them this week, the lst time I had logged in was before the Presidential election . . . and probably way before the meltdown.

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