Failed Startups Anonymous: An Entrepreneur’s Advice To First-Time Founders

When perusing the tech blogs, you’ll often read about startup successes – billion dollar valuations, exits in the hundreds of millions and the latest startup to raise a large chunk of funding. But what about those that don’t fare so well?

According to the Wall Street Journal, 3 out of 4 venture-backed startups fail – as in the number of startups that are unable to pay deliver a return on investment. On a broader spectrum, a reported 90% of tech startups will fail – which includes companies that have had great traction in the beginning but was unsustainable such as MySpace.

While it’s becoming more and more trendy to do a startup, any founder can attest to the fact that the well-trodden path of entrepreneurship is not an easy one – and can be in fact, quite hellish. Which is why we wanted to share the experiences of a founder whose startup did not make the cut. Although he wished to remain anonymous due to the negative impact the failed venture has had on his personal life, we thank him for letting us in his cautionary tale of entrepreneurship which can be helpful to any first-time founders.

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5 Questions With Martin Haigh, CEO of Ticketing Platform ‘Ticketflap’

Created by Clockenflap founders Mike Hill and Pete Gordon, Ticketflap was the ticketing platform answer to their epic music and arts festival. After listening to Hill’s investment pitch at a bar in Soho, angel investor Martin Haigh (pictured middle) signed on as a seed investor in Clockenflap and was brought on as Ticketflap’s CEO to handle operations full-time.

Before leading the charge at Ticketflap, Haigh traded emerging market equities for the likes of HSBC and Merrill Lynch and has worked in London, New York and Hong Kong and has started and angel funded a number of startups. Besides a background in finance, Haigh also has a serious case of wanderlust. He’s travelled to places such as Antarctica, Colombia and Ethiopia, and believes that his globetrotting adventures have contributed to his entrepreneurial spirit.

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Hong Kong’s Self-Storage Startup ‘Boxful’ Raises US $1.5 Million in Seed Funding

Boxful - Box Delivery 2
Despite being home to some of the world’s smallest living spaces, shopping is still the local and expat Hongkonger’s favorite pastime.

Unfortunately, according to real estate broker Colliers, approximately 820,000 Hong Kong households do not have access to a storage room. This bizarre mismatch of accumulating things without the space may be a problem for the consumer, but spells opportunity for the many self-storage startups that are cropping up.

Among them is Boxful, who has just raised a seed round of US $1.5 million from a group of investors in Greater China for their on-demand storage service. The idea is simple: The customer pays HK $49 a month for one storage box, then Boxful provides a free door-to-door pickup service. Each box can fit about 20 pairs of shoes, so if you have larger items such as luggage, golf clubs and sports equipment – Boxful can also accommodate. Of course, all of this can be done via your mobile device whether it’s arranging a pick-up or visual cataloging.

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