Case Study: Yehey.com

This blog entry was inspired by this Asian Institute of Management Case Study penned by Ms. Rhia Ramirez. Click Here to view the complete document. You'll find Yehey.com's history there. Please tell me if the link doesn't work. 

Site Profile: Yehey.com
CEO: ?
General Manager: Jay Arellano
Address: 38th Flr. Discovery Centre 25 ADB Avenue, Ortigas Center Pasig City 1605. Philippines
Administrative Contacts
Marketing (+632) 9106418 Advertising (+632) 9106411


Yehey.com was one of the pioneers of the web industry in the Philippines. Their search engine and eventual evolution into a multipurpose site with lots of content was brought about by the efforts of 5 students back in 1996:
  • Alistair Israel
  • David Quitoriano
  • Terence Siy
  • Raymund Cruz
  • Ian Lat
SourceWikipedia

Comment: The Yehey.com wikipedia entry looks strikingly bare as of August 19, 2011. 

Considering that Google was founded in 97-98, Yehey.com was poised to compete in the international arena. The word "Yehey" is the Filipino equivalent of "Yahoo" so at the time it was created, the general perception regarding the brand is that it's a Filipino Yahoo clone or equivalent. 

It had the potential to be "the Google"

WEB ARCHIVE OF YEHEY.COM CIRCA APRIL 15, 1997
CLICK HERE
Compared with Google.com (1998):

WEB ARCHIVE OF GOOGLE.COM CIRCA NOV. 1998
CLICK HERE

Compared with Yahoo.com (1996):


Compared with my dad's website Manilanet.com (1998)

WEBARCHIVE OF MANILANET.COM JUNE 14, 1998

At the time, I was a 2nd year high school student and broadband was only dial-up. Brand recognition was great since they spent a lot of money in full blown advertising campaigns. 

You'll see Yehey.com's banner ad (hehe) pasted behind buses that ply the EDSA route. It also had several TV commercials. 







It diversified its services in the same manner that Yahoo did. There was chat, web content, news, forums and a whole lot more. 

Unfortunately, it was unprofitable. 
Direct quotation from the AIM Case Study:

"Yehey! was created as the website that catered to the information and
communication needs of Filipinos online by providing the widest selection of
Philippine-based topics and interests. The venture started with just three computers
and cardboard boxes doubling as chairs. Eventually, the company was bought by
Ivantage. Ivantage, a publicly listed company, is the holding company of Yehey! and
owns 88%. Forty percent (40%) of Yehey! used to be owned by Catcha Singapore
but Catcha eventually went belly-up during the dot.com crash in the early 2000s.
Initially, Ivantage bought forty percent 40% of Catcha’s share holdings in order to
save Yehey.com, but after pouring in money year after year, the money invested by
Ivantage was converted into equity, making Ivantage now the biggest shareholder of
Yehey!"


The New CEO Enters in 2005

Donald Patrick Lim took over on August 2005







Donald ventured into the dog food business even when he didn't have a dog. But he has a diploma in Dog Nutrition from the US...

Timeline
"Our strategy is to ’Filipinize’ whatever is successful. We don’t have our own R&D (research and- development)," he said. 

Hopefully, advertisers and companies can find value in an interactive portal focused on the Philippines, he said. 

"Our strategy is to corner the portal market in the Philippines."  
Yehey Site Analytics as of August 19, 2011 
http://siteanalytics.compete.com/Yehey.com/
The departure of Donald Lim from Yehey.com and the lack of public communication about what's going on with the company is quite troubling if this is going to be the trend for Filipino startups. Yehey.com traffic is gradually declining and I'm too tired to read the Balance Sheet of Yehey.com. Scroll at the bottom.

From what I can deduce, yehey has focused on its other services.
  • Stir.ph - Now Offline
  • Kaban - Internet Payment Solutions
  • PinoyHenyo - Q and A Platform
  • Results - Well, results of everything...
  • Yehey Life - Now Offline  
Then I found this youtube video: