Ruba is just 15 months old. It has created a visual travel site and community with a focus on guides, photos, maps and interactive tour listings — all for improving the online travel research experience. Google will integrate Ruba into its iGoogle personalized information service.
But there’s an interesting personal connection here. Cassidy’s last startup was Xfire, an instant messenger system for gamers that MTV Networks bought for $110 million. Cassidy’s co-founder and head of marketing there was David Lawee. Lawee is now vice president of corporate development at Google in charge of mergers and acquisitions, and he’s buying his old boss’s new company. How’s that for an inner circle in Silicon Valley?