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In the bare-knuckles world of Internet start-up companies, only the wiliest entrepreneurs can survive. Since a promising company can go public for hundreds of millions of dollars, the stakes are high -- but the search for capital to keep a new business afloat can tax the ingenuity of even the most resourceful deal-maker.
As he scrambled to finance his own fledgling company, Michael Wolff, journalist and founder/CEO of Wolff New Media, knew he had gained access to the seminal business story of the 1990s. In Burn Rate, he portrays the most colorful key players in this frenetic industry: Louis Rossetto and Jane Metcalfe, founders of Wired, who seem more like cult leaders than entrepreneurs; Steve Case and Bob Pittman, who head AOL, the industry giant and most dysfunctional company in the nation; Walter Isaacson and Norm Pearlstein, the new media tsars at Time Warner; and others ranging from smooth Wall Street bankers to jittery kids with limitless enthusiasm, but precious little experience running a business.
Wolff wryly observes exploits in the web world that are as celebrated as those of the high-flying Wall Street traders of the 1980s.
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