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Meet the new owners of FooPets (locked)

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Hi Everyone,

I’m happy to announce that our deal with the previous owners of FooPets has finally been completed, so I can now tell you all about it.

First, a bit of backstory. FooPets was created by a small startup company called FooMojo back in January of 2008, and launched to the public as a Facebook app called Pokey in February 2008. Pokey was a hit on Facebook, reaching #13 in the app rankings there by May of 2008, so FooMojo was able to raise more money from investors and hire lots more artists and engineers to expand into the full FooPets experience at FooPets.com in December of 2008.

FooPets grew modestly through 2009 and the start of 2010, but the investors wanted even more growth, and decided to hire a new CEO from the gaming industry who could release more social games and grow even faster. In August 2010, that new CEO took over the company, changed the company name from FooMojo to Rivet Games, raised more money from new investors, and nearly doubled the staff from around 25 employees to around 40 to support the production of three new games.

Unfortunately, the new games did not fare well in the marketplace. With no new investors to be found to keep the company afloat, Rivet Games had no choice but to shut down and lay off all employees in February 2012. The new games were immediately turned off, but FooPets was kept running with a skeleton crew by the investors with the hopes of finding a buyer to keep it going.

This is where I came in, so I’ll catch you up on who I am. I’m Ron Hornbaker, or “Dr. Ron” as many of you know me, the original creator of Pokey and FooPets and the Founder/CEO of FooMojo. My dream in creating FooPets started in October of 2007: I wanted to merge my love of animals (I used to be a practicing veterinarian) with my love of tech and create the world’s most realistic virtual pets. That dream largely came true, but obviously I’m disappointed in the outcome of FooMojo and Rivet Games. After the new CEO came on board, I stuck around for nine months, then left Rivet Games in May of 2011.

In February 2012, when I learned Rivet Games was shutting down, I knew I had to do anything in my power to keep FooPets alive. FooPets was “my baby,” and I retained a deep personal connection with each of the 45 pets my amazing team of artists and engineers sweated over creating, and more importantly, every remaining FooPets member.

So, I scrambled. I recruited two of my original co-founders of FooMojo, Scott and Eugene, to help out, and recruited a new full-time community manager, Traci. The four of us spent all of March trying to fix bugs, improve site performance, communicate with you members that we were listening and trying to help, all the while negotiating with the investors on the details of the FooPets purchase.

That deal finally closed earlier this week, so I’m happy to be able to tell you now that Startapult, Inc. is the new, official owner of FooPets. Scott, Eugene and I are working part-time on FooPets (as we all have other day jobs now), while Traci is working full-time (you will know her here as MissJoeyLee). If we can get revenue and growth headed the right way, we’ll hire more engineers and artists to expand features and new pets and products.

For now, however, our primary focus is on 1) keeping site performance fast, 2) fixing bugs that frustrate you, and 3) ensuring that FooPets continues to be a sustainable business.

I’m optimistic that we can succeed in this challenge, and keep FooPets alive forever.

I appreciate each and every one of you who have stuck with FooPets through the years. I hope you’ll give us a chance to prove our dedication to this task. One thing is most important of all: without you, there would be no FooPets. Thank you for being here, and for doing your part to keep FooPets alive. We love you all, and we are listening to you.

-Dr. Ron

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Welcome back :)

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Welcome back!! c:

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Here`s to new beginnings :D

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Yeah! Welcome back, Dr. Ron! It hasn’t been the same since you left!!

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Welcome Back!!!! <3 You Guys! :)

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Welcome Back, Dr. Ron!

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Yay! :D

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Welcome back! :D

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It’s great to have you back!! :)

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Welcome back! I am glad that the site is geting back together, I hope that you guys can keep the site running!

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Dr. Ron – I know this is kinda far-fetched but will Foo go back to being free to join?

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Wow. O.O

Welcome back!

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Welcome back! :DDD

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shock

I still have email from when the company was small enough to respond to us personally ~ including you! I don’t expect that to return now that FooPets has grown so big, but I am excited to know that there are people in charge (again) that love the game as much as we do! Thank you for stepping up and saving this game ~ welcome back to all three of you!

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Wen does gifting come back???

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Glad to know the new owner (just in time before my account close for the membership) Now I can still play after knowing the new owner! Welcome back too Dr Ron! Keep up the great work Startapult and FooPets workers!

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My mind has seriously exploded, I’m having trouble proccessing this. e.e