I submitted another review to Amazon.co.uk today and I was quite pleased with it. Having just finished Boo Hoo (the story of online active streetwear retailer boo.com) I thought I would add another review to my small list. I was particularly fond of the last line: “Live hard, die young and leave a beautiful corpse” could almost have been written of Miss Boo.
My full review submitted to Amazon.co.uk earlier today:
What a fascinating book. Take two Swedes, a desire to be “cool” and throw $135 million at them! Ernst Malmstens story of boo.com is a warning to all new enterprises everywhere: get some strong financial controls and make sure you stay in charge of your costs. Most of all, it tells us that there is no substitute for some experience when running a shop.
I was sceptical that Ernst et al. would hide behind others and not shoulder the blame. However, what comes through clearly is the founders vision, belief and desire to build a world class product as well as the managements failings when developing that business. It is possible to read much by what is not said, as well as what story is directly told and in that, an incredible tale unfolds before you.
The book is well written and highly addictive. As the inevitable end approaches it becomes one of those books you pick up all the time, even just to read the next two paragraphs. As a story it is thoroughly thought-out, well-paced and fascinating. As an insight into online business history it may be one-sided and sometimes lacking but it remains compulsive reading and a captivating look a never-to-be-repeated economic boom (and bust) time.
Boo.com became synonymous with the “live the high live, party hard” culture that many cash fuelled Internet start-ups went (and spent) through. “Live hard, die young and leave a beautiful corpse” could almost have been written of Miss Boo.