Failed ventures June 2017 : RIP Startups that didn’t make it

Failure, they say, is the stepping stone to success. In this blog, we review some of the startups that pulled the plug in June 2017.

Mortgage tech startup shuts down operations – San Francisco-based mortgage-finance technology startup Sindeo has announced that it is shutting down after four years of operations.  HousingWire reports that the company chief executive, Nick Stamos, announced the company’s closure in an open letter posted on its website. “Startups are hard and simplifying the highly regulated, complex business of mortgages is even harder. I believed we had overcome the biggest hurdles, but unfortunately, we didn’t. Today, we made the difficult decision to wind down Sindeo,” Stamos wrote.

Automotive accessory startup Pearl is shutting down. A core of Apple employees wasn’t enough – Automotive startup Pearl is shutting down just one year after coming out of stealth mode, a source has confirmed to The Verge. The small company’s first (and now only) product was a $500 wireless backup camera that fit around your car’s rear license plate. The news was first reported by Axios. Pearl built its early reputation on the fact that most of its employees used to work at Apple. At the time of Pearl’s launch last year, around 50 of its 70 employees boasted a resume with time spent working for the tech giant.

Startup Postmortem: The reason food delivery service Hubbub failed – We’re a bit funny about failure in the UK. It’s a dirty word. It’s something to be ashamed of. In the US, however, things seem to be a little different. Create a company that ultimately fails and you’re not necessarily derided for it, you’re celebrated for giving it a shot. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and try again and you’ll be even more respected.

How My Startup Failed — But I Was Still Successful – In the startup world we often hear the phrase “fail and fail fast.” The thing that people don’t tell you is that failing hurts.

Startup reality: Time to fail more, fail better – Yes, startups fail. Large corporations fail, everywhere in the world. It seems we are so obsessed with the hugely successful consumer Internet companies across the world that we have forgotten the ten others that failed — that had mostly the same user proposition and business model as the one that is worth hundreds of billions of dollars today.

Should the Funds From a Failed Startup Be Returned to Investors? What happens if a founder fails a startup? Should he give back the money to investors? Answer by Bonnie Foley-Wong, CEO Pique Ventures, Pique Fund, author Integrated Investing: I was re-introduced to a founder who was running her second startup. Her reputation in the community is mixed. Some people remember her for running her first startup into the ground. Others, who might not know about her past or don’t care, like the civic mission of her new startup. She contacted me to discuss an opportunity for Pique Fund to invest in her second startup.

A eulogy for the golden era of VC-subsidized meals, which is finally over –  Postmates has struggled to make its on-demand deliveries cheap and missed profitability targets for two straight years. It charges a delivery fee and a 9.99% service fee (recently raised from 9%) on most orders. Munchery, a San Francisco-based startup that prepares and delivers meals, has struggled with high food waste and losses that at times topped $5 million a month. The company has cut staff, replaced its CEO, and stiffed early backers to stay afloat. SpoonRocket, a Bay Area startup that cooked and delivered meals, went out of business in March 2016. Maple, a startup that dreamed of delivering a better office lunch, closed its kitchen earlier this month. On Friday, Sprig, a gourmet meal delivery service in San Francisco that raised nearly $60 million, became the latest casualty, announcing it would shut down by the end of the day.

Oh no, Silicon Valley! Failed startup CEO on fraud rap after allegedly bullsh*ting staff and refusing to pay them – In an indictment unsealed on Wednesday, Isaac Choi, founder and CEO of failed Silicon Valley job search startup WrkRiot, was charged with five counts of wire fraud for allegedly defrauding former employees. Problems at the upstart surfaced in August when Penny Kim, former head of marketing for the company, published an account of her experience at an unnamed biz. She said the unspecified outfit failed to pay her and forged wire transfer confirmations to make it appear it had transferred owed funds.

Feds come knocking at failed Zoom Health – Federal investigators are looking into the sudden demise of Zoom Health Plan, the failed insurance arm of the better-known ZoomCare chain of medical clinics. Investigators showed up at the downtown Portland offices of Zoom Health at about 10 a.m. Thursday and interviewed staff, confirmed Lisa Morawski, a spokeswoman for the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services. She would not say which agencies were involved.

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