Internet is always full of surprises. You can have success stories like linkedin, ebay, amazon and facebook you can also have a lot of online businesses that went bust early. Picking up the top five internet failures is not as it easy as I thought it would be.
1. Cuil was a search engine that was introduced as a potential competitor for Google, the internet giant. Cuil was founded by “ex-Googlers” and managed to raise well over $30m. Cuil was soon criticized for returning irrelevant results or even pornographic material . Cuil went out business in 2010. If you have never heard of Cuil, this is how it looked like.
2. Webvan was once one of the top ten online retailer but went bust in 2001. The not so funny thing about Webvan is the $1bn order they placed for infrastructure (yes that’s right $1bn!) while the SEC filing shows a net loss of half a billion dollars for 2000. Amazon revived Webvan a couple of years ago.
3. Flooz.com was founded in 1999 and aspired to set up an online currency. A lot of people might be wondering why would someone use a virtual currency when they can buy anything using real money. In any case, flooz.com raised around $30m before going out business in 2011.
4. Boo.com was another online retailer that raised around $150m (which was spent in just six months) before going out of business. Boo.com was criticised for having a slow website. Apart from that, Boo.com had decided that it was their responsibility to pay for any postage for returns.
5. Some People would argue that including MySpace in such list is not fair. It is true that MySpace is not a failed start-up company. The reason that I included MySpace is because it is a fine example for how fast internet can change. MySpace used to be one of the ten most visited websites! NewsCorp bought MySpace in 2005 for a bit more than half a billion dollars. It was sold in 2011 for just $35m.