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Hate Losing Your Stuff? You'll Love Tile. A tracker for missing items finds big bucks

By Michelle Goodman

This story appears in the February 2015 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »


Like most people, Nick Evans and Mike Farley hated to lose things. So the engineers applied their professional knowledge to their personal problem. What if they could use mobile technology to ensure they never misplaced their keys, wallet or phone again?

The two friends started developing Tile—a lost-item finder and mobile app—in late 2012, leaving their full-time software jobs to do so. "Mike and I wanted to take a simple, universal problem and put together a simple, elegant solution for it," says Evans, who serves as Tile's CEO.

After incubating the San Mateo, Calif.-based startup with Silicon Valley mobile accelerator Tandem Capital, which netted the duo $200,000 in seed funding, they famously raised $2.6 million through a monthlong Selfstarter crowdfunding campaign in summer 2013. (Their initial ask was just $20,000.) In all, roughly 50,000 backers hoping to keep tabs on their purses, laptops, mobile devices, luggage, cars and bicycles preordered about 180,000 Tile devices.

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