While it is said that one should always learn from their mistakes, but when it comes to startups, a simple mistake can often cost everyone involved in the business a lot of money, hard work and time. So, as far as the startup ecosystem is concerned, one should not only learn from their own mistakes but also from other’s mistakes. Built on this line of thought is Startup Graveyard, a website that provides emerging entrepreneurs and startups a database of startups across various sectors that were unable to take off and had to shutdown their shops eventually.
The site acts as a resource for young entrepreneurs to avoid making the same mistakes as made earlier by failed startups. The website has a long list of startups across sectors such as advertising, analytics, eCommerce, finance, hardware, hospitality, music, social and software. With Startup Graveyard, the creators aim to de-stigmatize the meaning of the word “failure” in India and give an ode to the startups which did try hard but due to some reason or another couldn’t make it.
As soon as one lands on the website, one can see some of the known names such as Secret, 99dresses, RDIO and Exec etc. A simple click on their coffin like icon leads the user to a page which gives a brief detail about the startup like what sector it belonged, who were the founders, the year it went live, the year it died, how much money it had raised, the city it was based, who were its investors, and the reasons for its failure.
Startup Graveyard looks like a great idea to give a permanent space to these failed startups on the internet and encourage people to learn from the various mistakes that these startups and entrepreneurs made before them had unknowingly made. It’s almost serves as a memorial for these failed startups and the money, hard work, sweat and time that people of theses startups invested in building them. This way all their hard work is memorialised forever, despite the ephemeral and transient nature of the World Wide Web today.
While Startup Graveyard sounds like a fresh idea, but it really is not. Prior to this, there have been similar efforts like Valleywag and Fucked Startups, but they had more of negative tone to them when compared to Startup Graveyard, which is more on the lines of giving an ode to the failed startups and entrepreneurs and acknowledging their hard work and mistakes in a positive way.
The site, which currently has about 30 startups listed, aims to create a community that would help them in constantly improving the information on the site and make it more resourceful and up-to-date for young entrepreneurs.