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October 30, 2006

Monday news roundup

Posted by Kim Peterson at 10:45 AM

A few items of note for today:

-- RealNetworks adviser Richard Wolpert has become a major investor in Los Angeles-based OGPlanet, a company bringing popular Asian PC games to the U.S. The games will be free, but will make OGPlanet money through in-game advertising and virtual economies, Second Life-style.

Another investor in the venture is Andrew Wright, formerly head of games at RealNetworks. Wright now runs the Redmond-based Smilebox, which is developing digital postcard, e-card and photo album services for users.

-- Zillow president Lloyd Frink discusses the complaint filed against his company by a nonprofit group in his blog. Zillow's "zestimates" are merely a starting point, and not an official appraisal, he writes.

-- Nintendo shows off its video games ... at an AARP event?

-- Fortune magazine spends a day with Costco chief Jim Sinegal, who decides to wear a coffee-stained $12.99 shirt for the occasion. This isn't exactly tech-related, but it's an interesting article nonetheless.

In the 23 years since Sinegal co-founded Costco with Jeff Brotman (now chairman), it has never reported a negative monthly same-store sales result. Yet he's modestly compensated -- Sinegal earned $450,000 in salary and bonus last year, chump change by CEO standards. Add in his stockholdings and he's worth $151 million.

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