London, May 31: The man who created a computer software called TweetDeck has become a millionaire overnight by selling his tiny company to US giant Twitter for £25million, The Daily Mail reported.
36-yeard old Iain Dodsworth is a father of two and was unemployed when he created at home a piece of computer software called TweetDeck, which manages social networking universe by organising messages from groups of people into columns.
Dodsworth, who lives with wife Alison, 36, in Crowborough, East Sussex, founded his company three years ago. It made a profit for the first time last year – of just £10,514.
All the time, though, TweetDeck's popularity was growing. More than 20 million people have downloaded it, and posts from the service account for 10 per cent of Twitter's messages.
Dodsworth, described by neighbours as ‘ordinary, straight-forward and friendly', refused to charge for downloading TweetDeck or to allow banner advertising on his website, resulting in the failure to generate significant revenue.
But his invention's popularity and the risk of a rival dotcom company buying it attracted Twitter's interest. Dodsworth, a computer programmer, said: ‘While Twitter is great, there is just a flood of messages.
‘I wanted a way to filter out the messages from people I really want to hear from, but stay subscribed to people I might want to read occasionally.'
Dodsworth's firm has grown, with the help of investors, from a one-man band to a team of 15 with offices in East London's ‘Silicon Roundabout', the area in Old Street that is home to dozens of high-tech firms and has been targeted by David Cameron as the heart of a new ‘tech city'.
Dodsworth will stay on as head of the TweetDeck team, but it is not known how much stake in the company he has retained.