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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Maple

High-quality food delivery startup

General Information
Category
Food and Beverage
Country
United States
Started
In 2014
Business Failure
Business Outcome
Acquired
Closed
By 2017
Cause of Failure
Bad Business Model
Founders & Employees
Number of Founders
Two
Name of Founders
Akshay Navle, Caleb Merkl
Number of Employees
Between 101 And 250
Funding
Number of Funding Rounds
2
Total Funding Amount
$29M
Number of Investors
8
Description

Maple was a startup that prepared and delivered meals in New York. It provided its customer with complimentary maple sugar cookie in every order made. Unlike others companies, maple gave full restaurant experience for it had its own apps, delivery staff, and kitchens. The idea was to have top chefs prepare the main menu and have satellite kitchens provide the complementary dishes. Since the business didn’t have to incur in the high expenses that come when opening an actual restaurant, they could afford to provide premium dishes at an affordable price.

Cause of Failure

Maple’s original plan when they started out in 2015 was to offer customer great food at reasonable prices. However, leaked reports from the company revealed that Maple was losing money on each delivered meal and it only began making a 30 cents profit on meals from 2016. Although they first relied on their investor’s fundings to cover operational costs, the forecasted losses were too high and they wouldn't be able to sustain it. So, they increased the price, added delivery fee and changed ways of computing sales tax. This sudden price increases led many customers to shift to other providers that offered the same or better services for less money.

Maple also spent a lot to buy expensive grass-fed beef, antibiotic-free chicken and also imported pricey oils. Some sources claim that Maple lacked the operational chops to prepare and deliver meals on scale while maintaining quality and producing a profit. Maple kitchens were also not well equipped to cook 10,000 meals a day.

Furthermore, when Maple launched they used to give a complimentary maple sugar cookie, afterward they withdrew them saying that they were moving away from all kinds of non-natural products to good simple food. This might have ulteriorly displeased customers that became accustomed to the signature free of charge cookie after each order.

Go on Reading

MatterFab

Selling affordable solutions for metal 3-D printing

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Bad Business Model
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In 2013
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Karhoo

Cab aggregator and price comparison tool

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$39M
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Transportation
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One
Between 51 And 100
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Shipitwise

SaaS software for transportation companies

Transportation
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€419.4K
No Market Need
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Estonia
In 2016
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Five
Between 1 And 10
Less Than 1M
No Market Need
Acquired
Mailbox

Inbox that made email light, fast, and mobile-friendly.

Productivity
Shut Down
$5M
Bad Business Model
Productivity
United States
In 2011
By 2015
Two
Between 501 And 1000
Between 1M 10M
Bad Business Model
Shut Down
Tilt

Social payment startup focused on crowd-funding

Finances
Acquired
$62.1M
Lack of Focus
Finances
United States
In 2012
By 2017
Three
Between 101 And 250
More Than 50M
Lack of Focus
Acquired
LayerVault

Allowed users to store and collaborate on design work

Design
Shut Down
$535K
Lack of Funds
Design
United States
In 2011
By 2014
Two
Between 11 And 50
Less Than 1M
Lack of Funds
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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