34% of startups fail due to lack of product-market fit. Learn how to avoid it for only $15!

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.

This is Brought to You by:
Headway

We help startups launch new digital products through product strategy, design, and development.

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)!

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Vreal

VR game-streaming platform

General Information
Category
Entertainment
Country
United States
Started
In 2015
Business Failure
Business Outcome
Shut Down
Closed
Active
Cause of Failure
Bad Timing
Founders & Employees
Number of Founders
One
Name of Founders
Todd Hooper
Number of Employees
Between 11 And 50
Funding
Number of Funding Rounds
3
Total Funding Amount
$15M
Number of Investors
13
Description

Started in 2015, Vreal was a virtual reality startup that enabled users to create avatars and interact with content creators and players on a shared VR space. The startup managed to snag more than $15 million from VC firms including Axioma Ventures, Upfront Ventures, and Intel Capital. Vreal allowed players to watch immersive content while being inside the game, think of it as ‘Twitch for VR’ (Twitch is a live-streaming platform for gamers). They had more than two dozen employees before they decided to shut shop in August 2019.

Cause of Failure

The startup themselves admitted that they were ahead of their time with a product whose market was never fully developed. They expected the VR market to grow at a much faster rate, but it didn’t happen at the speed they expected.  

The virtual reality headset market had four consecutive quarters of decline before it returned to show signs of growth in Q3 2018. Enterprises have opened themselves up to adopting VR for its uses in different industries like healthcare, education, manufacturing, and firms that want to provide a different customer experience. But consumers haven’t cozied up to it because of its steep price and inability to understand how to use it. In other words, VR hasn’t gone mainstream yet.

Vreal’s failure looks more like collateral damage to the downward slide that the VR industry faced. It just wasn’t time. Its founder, Todd Hooper, has founded and operated a lot of companies in the entertainment space, including gaming. It looks like he had the right set of skills to win at a startup in this space. Vreal is the story of a company that was in the right place at the wrong time. 

Vreal’s competitor Virtalis develops visualization systems for defense, construction and military sectors. This is an indicator of how a product pivot could have saved Vreal. Since there were very few VR headset manufacturers at that time, like HTC, Oculus, Samsung, Xiaomi, and Sony, the price of these products wasn’t affordable for the majority as well. The fact that VR headsets weren’t cheap (they still aren’t) just added to Vreal’s problem as they insisted on having the VR hardware to be able to enjoy the content thus limiting their reach. 

Also, remember that Vreal operated in a sub-niche with a product that wasn’t widely adopted yet. There were just too many things that didn’t fall into place for Vreal to succeed. The adoption of VR technology will not die down as it holds significant potential for the long-term. We will soon see more startups in the VR headset space, especially for the gaming fans. 

Go On Reading

Laurel & Wolf

Online interior design marketplace

e-Commerce
Shut Down
$25.5M
Multiple Reasons
e-Commerce
United States
In 2014
Active
Two
Between 51 And 100
Between 10M 50M
Multiple Reasons
Shut Down
HotelsAroundYou

Booking of same-day hotel rooms

Travel
Shut Down
$125.4K
Competition
Travel
India
In 2013
By 2017
Three
Between 1 And 10
Less Than 1M
Competition
Shut Down
Brisk

Built tools for sales organizations

Marketing
Shut Down
$137K
Lack of Focus
Marketing
Sweden
In 2012
By 2016
Four
Between 11 And 50
Less Than 1M
Lack of Focus
Shut Down
Secret

Online platform to share personal secrets

Social Media
Shut Down
$35M
Legal Challenges
Social Media
United States
In 2013
By 2015
Two
Between 11 And 50
Between 10M 50M
Legal Challenges
Shut Down
Frankly

Messaging app for frank conversations

Social Media
Shut Down
$600K
Bad Market Fit
Social Media
India
In 2014
By 2016
Two
Between 51 And 100
Less Than 1M
Bad Market Fit
Shut Down
Navdy

Augmented driving device for cars

Transportation
Shut Down
$41.8M
Multiple Reasons
Transportation
United States
In 2013
By 2018
Two
Between 51 And 100
Between 10M 50M
Multiple Reasons
Shut Down
This is Brought to You by:
Headway
Headway

We help startups launch new digital products through product strategy, design, and development.

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)!

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.