In 2005, Yale graduates David Lerman and Matt Sanchez, now both 26, and Kevin Sladek joined forces to found San Francisco-based new-media company VideoEgg. (Sladek has since left the company.) At the time, their objective was to make the process of uploading video to the web as simple as uploading a photo. But following a beta release of their technology, they quickly recalculated VideoEgg's potential. Online communities like YouTube were eager for the powerful tool, and advertisers saw it as an innovative way to reach those communities' members. Today, VideoEgg has partnered with 14 of the top 20 social networking sites and helped more than 100 brands--including Ford, Nestlé and Sprint--advertise through its video ad network.
Powering more than 500 million video plays per month, VideoEgg itself is powered by more than $35 million in VC funding. Says Sanchez, "We started the company with what we thought was a $10 million business tool, and it has evolved into something much more significant than that."