Tilt failure


Social payment startup focused on crowd-funding


Tilt company was a social payment startup. Groups and communities used their mobile app to crowdfund various events. College students, in particular, used the mobile app to crowdfund events and settle with friends. Tilt first big mission was when they have successfully secured fundraisers for a nonprofit organization. The company sought to replace the notion of only being able to share photos and videos on a social platform by introducing social digital cash exchange as the next big thing.


United States
In 2012
By 2017
Number of Founders
Name of Founders
James Beshara, Karolyn Baxter, Khaled Hussein
Number of Employees
Between 101 And 250
Number of Funding Rounds
Total Funding Amount
Number of Investors
Precise Cause of Failure
Lack of Focus
Business Outcome

Cause of Failure

Tilt was valued at $375 million, but in less than two years of operation, it had lost over 95% of its worth.

The CEO was a passionate and charismatic person who believed in the power of online networks and technologies. He was believed to become the next Zuckerberg and had strong support from his investors. However, he wasn’t particular about growing the company to become a sustainable business. At its height, Tilt employees were living a posh lifestyle with beer on the office rooftop. During the employee’s trips and hangouts, they were spoilt for choices, all paid for by the millions of investors’ money which streamed into Tilt. The company finally run out of capital to maintain its operations, went looking for a potential buyer and found one in Airbnb. Airbnb bought the cash-strapped company for $12million in 2017.

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