A couple of days back, Microsoft confirmed the acquisition of Swiftkey in a deal pegged at $250 million. The Swiftkey team of around 1,000 employees along with its co-founders Jon Reynolds and Ben Medlock are set to join and work closely with Microsoft research team to continue the keyboard app’s development. However, the third co-founder, Chris Hill-Scott, wasn’t as fortunate as the other two. Months after the company was founded in 2008, Chris had sold his stakes in exchange for a bicycle, The Times reports.
Based on the ownership share of Reynolds and Medlock, they would have made around $36 million from the deal, The Guardian reports. Soon after the news of Microsoft buying Swiftkey came out, Scott tweeted saying selling his stake was “the biggest mistake I ever made.”
Scott left the company before Medlock and Reynolds developed the technology behind predictive text. Now a civil servant, Scott works as a developer with the UK government and draws a salary of around £55,000 a year.
“When SwiftKey formed there were three founding members. Chris was a friend of Jon’s from school and Ben was a friend from his university in Cambridge. Two months after forming the company, Chris decided to leave … Jon and Ben bought his shares. He left on good terms,” a SwiftKey spokesperson told The Times.
Microsoft acquired Swiftkey because its founders developed a way to accurately predict the works in upcoming sentences with an artificial intelligence based algorithm.