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Startup Cemetery

A big resource for entrepreneurs and startup owners, in which we have collected and analyzed why +100 big companies have failed. Learn from mistakes, and avoid being part of the 90% of businesses that fail.

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Flowtab

Mobile app to order drinks on nightclubs

General Information
Category
Food and Beverage
Country
United States
Started
In 2011
Business Failure
Business Outcome
Shut Down
Closed
By 2013
Cause of Failure
Bad Business Model
Founders & Employees
Number of Founders
One
Name of Founders
Mike Townsend
Number of Employees
Between 51 And 100
Funding
Number of Funding Rounds
Nothing
Total Funding Amount
-
Number of Investors
Nothing
Description

Flowtab was a mobile app that wanted to use technology to solve the problem of long queues in bars and hospitality venues. Flowtab created an app that would show users a list of drinks they could order from their mobiles without having to wait for the bartender to take their order. The app was connected to the bar's iPad which would then sync the orders to the POS terminal of the bar and payments would be are sent to the bar's bank account.

Cause of Failure

Flowtab tried various business model but could never found one that was both feasible and profitable. On paper, any bar would have wanted to use such an application. In reality, it proved quite hard for the company to get deals. This type of service requires a large number of users to be profitable since they only charged the customer $1 after they successfully placed an order. However, users don't usually stick to the same bars but would often choose a different one from week to week, and most users only used the app once or twice per month. Things could have still worked out, but when, in a promotional event they invited about hundred people to various clubs, their technology failed them and the founders resorted to serving drinks themselves to angry customers. This caused many people to leave one-star ratings for the app further thinning the chances of the app success.

Since their founding was limited they were also understaffed and a very small team had to take care of everything. After a couple more pivots and some members of the team leaving to pursue other goals, Flowtab finally decided to shut doors.

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ArsDigita

Agency that built solutions for e-commerce

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RethinkDB

Scalable database for the real-time web

Software and Hardware
Acquired
$12.2M
Bad Market Fit
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United States
In 2009
By 2016
Two
Between 11 And 50
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Acquired
Leap Transit

Provider of private transit and offers bus services

Transportation
Shut Down
$2.5M
Legal Challenges
Transportation
United States
In 2013
By 2015
One
Between 51 And 100
Between 1M 10M
Legal Challenges
Shut Down
Sunrise

Calendar app for mobile and desktop

Productivity
Acquired
$8.2M
Bad Business Model
Productivity
France
In 2012
By 2016
Two
Between 11 And 50
Between 1M 10M
Bad Business Model
Acquired
Take Eat Easy

Restaurants delivered to your door

Food and Beverage
Bankruptcy
€16.4M
Competition
Food and Beverage
Belgium
In 2013
By 2016
Four
Between 101 And 250
Between 10M 50M
Competition
Bankruptcy
Pixate

Platform for mobile interaction design

Design
Shut Down
$3.8M
Acquisition Flu
Design
United States
In 2012
By 2016
Two
Between 11 And 50
Between 1M 10M
Acquisition Flu
Shut Down
This is Brought to You by:
NerdPilots

NerdPilots

Get fast, reliable web, mobile and software development help 24/7.

Acadium

Acadium

120 hours of digital marketing from a remote apprentice for only $299 (+ $50 off!).

This could be your AD. Sponsor Startup Cemetery to reach +10,000 entrepreneurs.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter!

Invite us into your inbox and get immense learning and 80+ deals on tools to help you scale your startup (worth up to $50,000)!

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