Brawker, a startup that facilitated the purchase of any item sold online with bitcoin, has announced that it is closing its doors.
In a concept similar to the more recently launched Purse.io, Brawker’s service worked two ways. Those interested in purchasing a given item with bitcoins would submit the item’s URL and set their desired discount. At the same time, those interested in buying bitcoins via credit card, likely at a premium, could do so. The premium paid essentially compensated for the credit card fees and subsidized the purchase of the item for its buyer.
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Unlike other business closures more common in the industry, this one hasn’t arisen as a result of hacking, theft, non-compliance or banking difficulties. The business simply failed to gain enough traction. The company wrote on its blog:
“…our growth rate did not meet our expectations, and the service does not scale as we would have expected to. The Bitcoin community came up with many great startups and the environment is very different from what it was 18 months ago, when we started working on this project.”
In a sense, the closure does not represent a failure as much as a healthy step in the entrepreneurial cycle. Indeed, the startup says it has already embarked on other Bitcoin projects and plans on making part of its code open source to benefit the community.