Bono and The Edge from U2 are now Dropbox investors.
Is the online storage business so good that it's drawing in musicians as company investors? Apparently so, as Dropbox announced via Twitter that Bono and The Edge from the popular Irish band U2 are now investors in the company. It's no April Fool's joke either -- they're really dumping money into the online storage biz.
GigaOM reports that U2 first came across Dropbox when they were building a project on Facebook. Once Dropbox raised $250 million last year, the group decided the online storage business might actually be profitable. Unfortunately, Bono's track record as an investor hasn't been all dollar signs and pots of gold.
Since 2005, Bono has been a co-founder of Elevation Partners which also includes Silver Lake’s Roger MacNamee and EA star John Riccitiello. The group has made a few positive investments in Yelp and Facebook, but it has also backed a few duds including a $460 million investment into Palm which was disintegrated as the company tried to rescue itself and challenge Apple. As we've already seen, Palm was snatched up by HP and digested, thus the result was a discontinuation of webOS-based hardware and the OS itself going open source.
Also noted is Elevation's $300 investment in Forbes in 2006 which set the value of the family-owned 95-year-old company at $750 million. But that didn't help the struggling enterprise which was virtually pinching pennies at the time. Three years later, Forbes was probably not even worth half of that $750 million, and Elevation scaled back its involvement.
According to this report, Bono was listed as the worst investor in America, and that Elevation Partners is "arguably the worst run institutional fund of any size in the United States." Now he's dumped funds into Dropbox along with band mate The Edge. He also secretly purchased around $90 million of Facebook shares on the secondary market late last year, a purchase which may end up actually saving Elevation Partners by providing a return of more than 10x once Facebook goes public next month.
So what does all this mean to the Dropbox end-user? Probably nothing, only that the company itself now has another stream of income that will keep the doors to its virtual storage facility open for some time to come.