Despite raising $20 million in a Tencent-led Series A funding round, blockchain startup, Everledger filed for bankruptcy barely one month after laying off all its workers. The company reportedly failed to meet investors’ expectations, sending it into administration eight years after its launch.
Everledger describes itself as a digital transparency company that uses blockchain to track and identify the origin of luxury assets, including precious metals, artworks, and similar items.
Recall that the company quietly gave layoff notices to all employees on March 31, appointing Vincents Chartered Accountants as administrators nearly one month later. Everledger founder Leanne Kemp defended the move, claiming the company’s management had to do it to protect shareholders’ interests.
“The second tranche of funding due to Everledger did not materialize, and subsequently, we understand that there are external reasons and pressures on this investor,” he said in a statement.
Everledger has raised $51.7 million since 2015
Everledger’s sudden bankruptcy declaration surprised many, as fundraising has always been one of the company’s biggest strengths. Its most remarkable feat was the $20 million Series A funding round in 2019. The company has raised $51.7 million since its inception in 2015.
Tencent is Everledger’s biggest backer, but some other industry leaders have significant stakes in the company, including Rakuten, Fenbushi, and GMP Securities. Everledger has also won several government grants in the past, including a $3.5 million UK Government Future Fund.
According to the company’s founder, however, the bankruptcy declaration is a result of the failure of its most recent funding attempt.
Everledger’s failure may be unfortunate, but it’s not the first embattled supply chain tracking company. US tech company IBM and logistics firm Maersk are other examples of companies that have canceled their blockchain-based tracking service, with a lack of global collaboration being the prime reason.