Cockroaches of the New Economy

According to popular belief, cockroaches are so hardy and adaptable they can survive even a nuclear holocaust.  Similarly, there are some critters that even in this economic crisis have continued to swarm.

In addition to thriving bankruptcy lawyers and soup manufacturers, virtual worlds offer what Forbes calls a “glimmer of hope” amidst the doom and gloom.  And it makes sense.  Virtual worlds are hopping as consumers turn to cheaper forms of entertainment and businesses cut back on travel.

In June 2008, before all this financial mess started, our company was fortunate enough to raise a round of bridge financing.  It was hard work pitching the concept of virtual worlds to uninitiated investors, and we got plenty of blank stares when we promised that “soon everybody will be rezzing their avatars in the sims.”

OK, we said it better than that – but here’s a look at how someone who invested $10,000 in other ways on June 6, 2008, is faring today:

  • Campbell’s Soup – $11,503
  • Exxon – $8,794
  • Google – $5,246
  • Apple – $4,855
  • Dow Equity Fund – $4,681
  • GM – $1,905
  • AIG – $579
  • Lehman Bros. – $14

Ouch!  How do these returns compare to Metaverse Mod Squad and other virtual world startups?  Only time will tell.  But my money is on the cockroaches.

–Mike Pinkerton

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