Source: InternetHistoryPodcast, Nov 2014
in 1999, the search engine Excite.com—then running number two to the reigning champion of search in the dot-com era, Yahoo—had the opportunity to purchase Google, the site that would eventually dethrone Yahoo as the king of search, for the low-low price of $750,000.
in 1999, Excite was running a distant number two to Yahoo in terms of “search” traffic. But Excite was a technology play, a true search engine, as opposed to Yahoo’s vaunted directory. Both companies, in addition to most of the other search engines out there (Lycos, Alta Vista, et al) had been busy transforming themselves into “portals,” the business model favored by Wall Street at the time.
… George Bell, who was the CEO of Excite at the time. He was the guy who nixed the Google deal.