Q&A: What is the Strangest Way a Start-up Ever Failed?

Have you ever wanted to pay $400 for a tool that works just as well as your hands? No? Me neither.

Juicero was a $400 juicer that made freshly-squeezed juice using special bags that were sold on a weekly subscription model. On top of that, the overpriced blender boasted WiFi connectivity (yes, really) and promised a to create a new platform and innovate the food delivery model.

Apparently, there are a bunch of people with money to burn who longed for a blender they could activate from their living room and perishable fruit bags delivered right to their door (who knew?) because the start-up raised $120 million.

What Sank Juicero?

Two Bloomberg reporters decided to give Juicero a try and discovered that the specialized juice bags could be effectively squeezed by hand. The reporters were able to squeeze 7.5 ounces of juice in a minute and a half compared to the 8 ounces yielded by the machine in about two minutes. Basically, the Juicero was a $400 piece of junk.

What Can We Learn from the Bizarre Rise and Fall of Juicero?

The weird story of Juicero represents the worst impulses of start-up culture—the needless complexity, the failure to deliver on lofty goals, the outright pretentiousness. #MichaelsWilder #startups Click To Tweet

I doubt that Juicero’s creators would have raised a fraction of capital if it was only selling its squeezable juice packets (despite the fact that the bags themselves were generally well-liked). It’s clear that fancy tech often wins out over simplicity when it comes to wooing Silicon Valley investors.

The weird story of Juicero represents the worst impulses of start-up culture—the needless complexity, the failure to deliver on lofty goals, the outright pretentiousness. A true innovation should be a response to a modern problem, a solution that consumers actually want (imagine that!), not an investor-oriented cash-grab fueled by gimmicks.

Mike Speer Administrator
Chief Marketing Officer Michaels WIlder

Opinions are my own and not the views of my employer.

Chief Marketing Officer at Michaels Wilder and an entrepreneur since before the average person knew what that even meant, Mike has helped countless businesses build effective sales and marketing strategies. His philosophy is, “If you’re not thinking 10 years ahead, you’re already behind.” Mike’s content has appeared in Forbes Magazine, Inc. and Apple News. He has also been featured numerous times as a “Top 10 Writer” worldwide on the Q&A content site, Quora.

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Mike Speer Administrator
Chief Marketing Officer Michaels WIlder

Opinions are my own and not the views of my employer.

Chief Marketing Officer at Michaels Wilder and an entrepreneur since before the average person knew what that even meant, Mike has helped countless businesses build effective sales and marketing strategies. His philosophy is, “If you’re not thinking 10 years ahead, you’re already behind.” Mike’s content has appeared in Forbes Magazine, Inc. and Apple News. He has also been featured numerous times as a “Top 10 Writer” worldwide on the Q&A content site, Quora.

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