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THE EXIT CLUB podcast is all about what happens once the papers are signed, the deal is done, and life after exit begins. Each week, host Laura Rich talks with successful entrepreneurs across a range of industries about how they navigated the aftermath of an exit. THE EXIT CLUB pulls back the covers on this final stage of the entrepreneurial journey, sharing stories of grief and triumph.
Veteran journalist and serial entrepreneur Laura Rich exited her business in February 2017. She is also the author of the Paul Allen biography The Accidental Zillionaire and a former columnist for the New York Times.
At Fratzke Media, our paths cross with some amazing people. Learn more about their habits, insights and stories behind their success.
The first guest on THE EXIT CLUB podcast is Laurel Touby, the former CEO and founder of Mediabistro, a media industry resource based in New York City. Laurel first launched in 1994 as a set of networking parties, but she grew that list of attendees into a customer database on which to build a company. Mediabistro served as a hub of networking, education and gossip for the media industry, through its sale to Jupitermedia (now WebMediaBrands) in 2007. Laurel personally pocketed $13 million of the $23 million deal size, and stayed on with the acquiring company for a few years of an earn-out period.
In our conversation, she talked about challenges post-exit around friends and colleagues who came looking for payouts, the way the media covered her sale, and finding her way into her next chapter. But she also talked about the “bliss” she felt for a full two years following the deal, and the wise strategy she and her husband, journalist Jon Fine, took to creating an investment and spending plan for their financial windfall.
Laurel is currently managing partner of Supernode Ventures and Head of The LoftSpace SFO.