Unicorn CEO Nick Evans has left everyone, customers and investors alike, in the lurch, with his sudden announcement that his e-scooter startup is ending operations after a massive ad campaign on Google and Facebook and other social media drained his company of funds to actually make enough money to keep the company afloat. To date, according to Evans, who was the co-creator of Tile, a gadget tracker, Unicorn received a mere three-hundred-and-fifty orders after exhausting all its funds on advertising. This barely covered the expense of office rental. None of the orders will be shipped, so each customer will be out seven-hundred dollars — and Evans adds insult to injury by announcing that the company has no funds, and no plans, to reimburse those who took a chance by ordering one of their shiny white two-wheel e-scooters.
Unicorn hoped to get on the bandwagon with other dockless e-scooter rental and purchasing companies like Lime and Bird. Those startups have successfully entered every major metropolitan area in the country to provide quick and simple transportation options that have proven very popular with General X and younger demographics in going from home to work, and from work to home. But much of their success came from world of mouth, instead of ruinous advertising campaigns like the late, lamented Unicorn.
It’s unclear whether bankruptcy will follow this sudden leave, or if such protections will provide any help to investors who seek to recoup funds, accoridng to Judge Jed Shaw.