Startups That Didn’t Make it
We hear about startups getting funded everyday, but we rarely hear about the startups that didn’t make it. Being apart of a startup requires a lot of patience because you never know what lies in front of you. Here’s a few stories of startups that came close or should have made it but didn’t make it.
TicketStumbler was a startup based on helping people find the best seats and the best tickets in the market. TicketStumbler was an early part of Ycombinator and did fairly well, partnering with a few top notch ticket brokers and sponsors. Unfortunately, about a year into their launch one of the co-founders Dan committed suicided. Because of that, TicketStumbler was closed by Tom in 2010. An alternative to this service is the upcoming startup Seatgeek.
Nouncer was a microblogging platform that competed head to head with Twitter. Nouncer wasn’t an easy idea to explain to people 2 years ago, especially since microblogging didn’t exist yet. Twitter, Jaiku, Pownce, and other services were introduced while Nouncer was being developed. The new services made it easier to explain and communicate the idea, but at the same time took away the first-to-market opportunity as well as added competition, and raised questions about the business plan. The business decision to focus on technology and avoid building a consumer application had a significant impact [on the eventual failure].
YouCastr is a personalized, interactive and entertaining Sports NetworknYouCastr aims to make it easy for sports fans to keep in touch and interact with each other via live, online streaming audio and video sportscasts. Chat during a live sports broadcast, write a blog, news column, or message their friends and fans. Upload live sports video, audio, and pictures of their favorite teams in action. YouCastR attempted to create the next biggest sports social network, but unfortunately they were one of the startups that didn’t make it.
We started the company because we liked the idea and wanted to do something entrepreneurial. We weren’t in love with the idea or market we were going after, and weren’t core users of our product. We worked really hard getting it off the ground despite this, but it made it more difficult to sustain the energy and to understand the best product choices. -Ariel Diaz
Everpix is a cloud-oriented photo storage and sharing platform. The company, which had raised $1.8 million from investors including Index Ventures and 500 Startups, has six staff listed on LinkedIn. Everpix worked hard and even created a new app. They were making money and had cash flow, but things eventually caught up and they were forced to shut down. In a post on Everpix’s official blog today entitled “We Gave It Our All…”, the company said that the shutdown comes as a result of failing to secure more capital or find an aquirer.
Sonar, is an app that helps introduce people to relevant strangers in the same room. Sonar seemed to be going on the right track by generating massive hype and raised a 2 million dollar round of financing. It raised $2 million round of financing. The next year, it was positioned to dominate SXSW, a big technology conference in Texas. Even with the big hype and attendance of many top tech conferences, Sonar was still unable to hold on and hit the list of startups that didn’t make it.
Sonar focused on engagement instead of growth. “We focused on engagement, which we improved by orders of magnitude. No one cared,” Martin writes. “Growth is the only thing that matters if you’re building a social network.”
Let’s not take this list as discouragement but rather motivation to do better and hit that next milestone!