On July 12, 1994, I registered forest.net, the domain for digital.forest.
You remember 1994, don’t you?
Kurt Cobain shot himself. O. J. Simpson led a good portion of the LAPD on a slow-speed auto chase. Yugoslavia was still having a messy, bloody civil war. Richard Nixon and John Candy died. George Foreman became the oldest man to win the world heavyweight boxing championship. Bill Clinton was President of the United States and Boris Yeltsin was President of Russia.
You know, back before most people knew there was the Internet and looked stuff up in physical books instead of Googling it?
In 2012, six thousand, four hundred, and thirteen days later the company sold, and I was relieved of being technical support and historical business archivist of last resort.
It finally found the exit.
Entrepreneurs and want-to-be-entreprenuers take note: I planned for digital.forest to be a five to seven year journey. I expected that it would either crater or take off in that time frame. Never did I expect it to grow like crazy, level off, raise some money, grow like crazy, plunge like a rock to the ground, and then almost, but not quite go out of business, then claw its way back to profitability but have growth hampered by capital costs that were beyond organic growth or lending capacity due to macroeconomic forces.
I also did not expect it to warp my brain the way it did. Cash flow management is now hard-wired into me. I have a deep appreciation for what can be done by a small cadre of motivated and engaged people. I am now even more unemployable and unmanageable. 😉
While the financial remuneration I received was modest when amortized over those seventeen and a half years, the friendships and wisdom I accumulated are beyond priceless.
So I send a belated thank you to everyone who had anything at all to do with digital.forest over the years.
I am forever in your debt, and I look forward to the next adventure together.