EXECUTIVE PROFILE

Zach Klein

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ZACH KLEIN BACKGROUND / BIOGRAPHY

    • It's late 2003. Four early-twenty-somethings run CollegeHumor.com, a Website that started as a casual college hobby and evolved into an Internet giant, garnering millions of pageviews and a ton of buzz. Yet how to make money off of it? "We weren't taken seriously by traditional media buyers. We needed a way to monetize our massive amounts of traffic," remembers Zach Klein. "We performed an exercise to evaluate who were our most common mom-and-pop advertisers, and filtered for businesses we could replicate and advertise ourselves. T-shirts seemed like the business with the lowest barrier of entry, and since we already had writers on staff, we commissioned them to write t-shirts."

      The rest is history: Busted Tees peaked within a couple of years as one of the largest apparel advertisers on the Internet. Now owned by IAC, which purchased CollegeHumor.com in 2006, it sells thousands and thousands of t-shirts a month. "We pioneered a popular aesthetic of graphic tees and the way to sell them," says Klein.

      It's an example of his ability to take whatever situation he is placed in and make it his own. Before he was first brought onto CollegeHumor.com by its two original founders, for example, there was little product development know-how on hand, and plans for long-term strategy were at a minimum. Klein was crucial to its growth, even while still working out of his dorm room.

      And when, after the IAC purchase, Klein found himself with a one-year contract there, he persuaded his new employer to fund him and his partner's nascent video social network project, which became the extremely successful and cutting-edge Vimeo. Think YouTube, only with a focus on original videos and community, which has led to its being favored by those who care for quality. "Vimeo is a very small group living inside of large corporate giant, yet it has to this day maintained a fierce set of principles that are often discarded by acquirees," he relates.

      Klein currently works as Chief Product Officer for Boxee.
    • TITLE
    • Founder Partner
    • INVESTOR ADDRESS
    • 54 W. 21st St #1001
      New York, NY 10010
      United States

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