Tumblr Investors Attack Research Firm On Twitter

Some early investors are saying a report by financial research firm PrivCo about the money they made from the Yahoo deal is wrong. PrivCo just wants everyone to leave it alone.

A Twitter war of words has erupted between independent financial research firm PrivCo and prominent venture capital investor Fred Wilson over how much Tumblr’s financial backers made in the Yahoo deal.

PrivCo came out with a report yesterday estimating that some of Tumblr’s investors would walk away with more than $150 million. Employees would make anywhere from around $370,000 to more than $6 million, depending on how early they are, from Yahoo’s $1.1 billion deal for the blogging website, according to the report.

The report put the take of Wilson’s firm Union Square Ventures at $253 million. Wilson, however, didn’t agree with PrivCo’s analysis. He wrote in a post on Hacker News that the report was “total garbage.”

“There is not one fact in this privco thing that is close to right,” Wilson wrote. “The numbers are good but nowhere close to that good. This is the same firm that predicted Foursquare would be out of business this year which will also prove to be nonsense.”

Early investor Bijan Sabet also disagreed with the report.

The response from PrivCo, however, is nothing short of amazing. It’s embedded below and basically speaks for itself — though the firm started deleting a few of the previous tweets.

For what it’s worth, sources inside the company said that the payouts cited in the PrivCo report were not accurate.

Representatives for Tumblr and PrivCo did not respond to requests for comment. In the meantime, here’s what’s come from them (so far).

Summary of @Bijan Sabet and @SparkCapital's #VC investment skills: "Total garbage." Mostly "dead-pool" portfolio:

— PrivCo (@PrivCo)

Beware @SparkCapital investors. Looks like a winning portfolio: @Foursquare (resorted to Loans), TwistBox, OneRiot

— PrivCo (@PrivCo)

@ajs @gmanolatos @Ajs's sloppy writing skills: We have 100 more. How is she employed w 8th grade English education?

— PrivCo (@PrivCo)

@ajs Catty like this? ASJ:"How is PrivCo allowed to exist and how has it not been sued to death by all of these terrible, false reports?"

— PrivCo (@PrivCo)

@ajs BI is our competitor, yr not independent: this is malicious defamation of yr competitor. Strict standard.Screenshots.taken for lawsuit.

— PrivCo (@PrivCo)

Good news- a @Tumblr VC just called us to bury the hatchet & gave us the precise figures. Despite blanket denials our calcs were very close.

— PrivCo (@PrivCo)

Update: PrivCo has released some new numbers, with both Union Square Ventures’ take and Spark Capital’s take coming in at $198 million.

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