Inventions community Quirky has filed for bankruptcy protection, marking one of the brightest flameouts of late for a venture-backed company that could serve as a caution on the perils of building physical products.
Quirky, an online platform for inventions, had hauled in about $170 million in equity investments from a who’s who of Silicon Valley venture firms, including Andreessen Horowitz and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, according to industry tracker Dow Jones VentureSource.
Since the start of 2013, only two U.S. companies have gone bankrupt or shut down that have raised more capital than Quirky, namely Better Place and Coda Automotive, respectively, both in 2013. Andreessen Horowitz-backed fashion startup Fab Inc. raised more than $300 million and sold part of it for low tens of millions, according to The Wall Street Journal.
While the specific details of Quirky’s unraveling remain unclear, the investment from Andreessen Horowitz marks one of the biggest black eyes for the venture firm since itsportfolio startup Fab flopped.
The startup struggled to deliver products at scale and stumbled with distribution, according to a source familiar with the matter. Parcel delivery service UPS is listed as the third-largest creditor in its bankruptcy filing, seeking $1.3 million.