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Dot-com 'boy wonder' says: 'And for my next trick... '

How does Alex Tew follow The Million Dollar Homepage?
Written by Will Sturgeon, Contributor

How does Alex Tew follow The Million Dollar Homepage?

Alex Tew, one of the internet's youngest 'millionaires', has said he intends to take the innovation behind his phenomenally successful Million Dollar Homepage and replicate the success with a more credible, sustainable business model.

The Million Dollar Homepage started as gamble on the public's fascination with quirky websites and turned into a global phenomenon, making an unlikely celebrity of its founder.

Now Tew is turning his attention to creating something more long-term.

He told silicon.com: "The challenge really for me now is to find out how I can take the phenomenal success of the Million Dollar Homepage and replicate that in order to create a sustainable business model. I can't just do The Million Dollar Homepage 2."

Tew was attending the Second Chance Tuesday networking event in London (see picture gallery below) and said he'd already had a lot of interest from investors. And although he is keeping his cards close to his chest he said there are a number of ventures already in the planning stage.

And he understands they will have to be a lot more credible than The Million Dollar Homepage.

Tew said: "In order to get serious funding you have to come up with a real business plan."

Tew would only divulge the fact that his thoughts are entirely focused on the internet – a medium he believes is ripe for a second major boom, having barely started senior school when the first dot-com boom came along.

He said: "I kind of wish I was 10 years older. If I'd been around in 1996, 97, 98 I'd have been so excited. A lot of the best companies were founded then: Amazon, eBay, Google. Though I still believe there is so much more that can be done.

"Everybody says that everything that can be done with the internet has already been done but that's bollocks.

"In 10 years' time what is going to exist that doesn't exist now? You have to open your mind and you have to keep on having ideas and you have to persist with them and if you get knocked down you have to get up and go for it again."

Tew said he is aware of the dozens of websites looking to copy the successful format of The Million Dollar Homepage but said they'll have little success "because it's already been done".

He said: "That just shows how uninventive people are," adding that it mirrors the reasons why the dot-com bubble bursting was so much worse than it should have been as markets which could sustain one successful business model were often flooded with dozens of imitators looking to replicate it with no added-value of their own.

Inevitably, those jumping on the bandwagon failed and added to the dot-com death count. And Tew predicts a similar fate for the copy-cat 'homepage' sites.

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