AR Startup Blippar Goes Into Administration Following Fall in Funding
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It takes hard work, money, and passion to get your startup off the ground. But sometimes a new startup turns out not to be the dream startup you thought it was. The decision to close a company is usually due to an inability to generate sufficient business profits. After all the hype, London – based augmented reality startup Blippar, which once claimed to be valued at $1billion has gone into administration after investors blocked further funding.
The bad news comes less than a year after it received $37 million in Series E funding led by Candy Ventures, Qualcomm Ventures and existing investors.
When Funding Falls Through
Specializing in augmented reality and computer vision, the company had offices in Singapore, India and the United States. Founded in 2011 by Ambarish Mitra and Omar Tayeb, Blippar gives access to an AR ecosystem with products and professional services to meet specific business needs – from consultancy to AR creation tools that publish AR content within a client's own app or rich media banners (no app required).
The company wrote in a blog post, “Over the last several months, the whole team at Blippar has worked hard to focus the business on our B2B offering in order to reach profitability and deliver long-term value to shareholders. This strategy had been approved unanimously by our board and required a small amount of funding, in addition to the funding announced in September, to fulfil our plans. That funding was secured, but it ultimately required shareholders’ approval for Blippar to access it. Regrettably, one shareholder voted against the additional funding, effectively blocking the investment even if they were not asked to participate in any further financing of the business, and despite our extensive efforts to reach a successful resolution.”
The company also added that Paul Appleton and Paul Cooper of David Rubin and Partners were appointed Blippar’s joint administrators. They are managing the affairs, business and property of the company. The joint administrators act as agents of the company and act without personal liability. Both Appleton and Cooper are licensed to act as Insolvency Practitioners in the UK by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).
The startup’s services are likely to come to halt once the administrators take control of the business and its servers. Additionally, the company has begun laying off all of its employees.
“As part of the administration process, all employees will be let go. This is an incredibly sad, disappointing, and unfortunate outcome,” the company added in the blog post.
In a short span of time, Blippar had been pushing the boundaries of what is possible in AR and has helped thousands of brands, retailers and agencies use the technology across the consumer journey to deepen customer engagement, drive footfall and increase sales.