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Where there's life, there's death, and Silicon Valley is no different.
For every thriving billion-dollar unicorn, there are endless numbers of start-ups that have passed onto the other side — laying off their engineers with their matching, branded t-shirts; closing down their game rooms filled with ping-pong tables; and leaving heartfelt goodbye notes for customers on their soon-to-be defunct websites.
As 2017 comes to a close, it's time to take a tally of some of the best-funded startups to shut their doors this year. Altogether, these companies raised $1.695 billion in venture capital funding. But it's now basically all gone, and investors can no longer hope to break even via an initial public offering or by having the companies acquired.
From February's shuttering of Beepi, a used-car exchange once valued at $560 million, to November's closure of the smart earbud maker Doppler Labs, which was formerly worth $235 million, these are 10 of the most highly funded startups to die in 2017.
Beepi: 2013 — February 2017Beepi
Capital raised: $150 million
Peak valuation: $560 million
Beepi, whose website that brought together car buyers and used-car sellers, shuttered in February. Both Fair.com and used-car dealer DGDG considered buying the startup, but ultimately decided against it. In the end, Beepi ran out of money.
Quixey: 2009 — February 2017Quixey
Capital raised: $133 million
Peak valuation: $600 million
Quixey, whose mobile search engine was able to crawl apps, laid off most of its staff at the end of February. It seems the company never found its footing or a steady revenue source, despite replacing its founding CEO, Tomer Kagan, in March 2016.
Yik Yak: 2013 — April 2017Yik Yak
Capital raised: $73 million
Peak valuation: $400 million
Yik Yak, whose anonymous social media app was at the center of several college harassment scandals, announced its closure on April 28 after struggling to keep users on its platform. Just days before Yik Yak closed shop, payment company Square acquired its engineering team for a cool $3 million.
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