According to an estimate from industry analyst Advanced Interactive Media Group, San Francisco-based Craigslist is on pace to earn $100 million in revenue this year.
Not bad for an email list turned classified advertising service run out of a small office in the Sunset District.
The company makes money on business listings, housing listings and erotic services listings, primarily in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York.
Overhead is apparently slim, with only the cost of network infrastructure, a small office and under three dozen employees -- which mean that profit margins are amazing. Founder Craig Newmark and CEO Jim Buckmaster own most of the site, while eBay has a stake of around 25 percent.
While the site could potentially make more money by charging more or expanding the number ads users are required to pay for, the company professes a disinterest in maximizing profits. Though with that revenue and those margins, who can blame Newmark and Buckmaster for quietly piling up wealth while cultivating an image of selfless public service?
Photo by Flickr user InfoMofo.
Jackson West would like to point out that Dickens's Scrooge was also known for his incredible wealth and penny-pinching penury.