Apr 15, 2016 ยท 2 minutes

Here at Pando we have a pretty decent strike rate when it comes to predicting problems with the companies we cover (see my other story today on the latest act of the Zappos shit-show).

But that doesn’t mean it always feels good to be right. In fact, in the case of today's closure of kid-friendly car sharing service, Shuddle, it’s pretty depressing.

Back in July of last year, Sarah wrote about how, as a mom, she really wanted the company to do well but was concerned the idea just wouldn’t scale…

It’s rare that I hear a pitch for a company that I know is absolutely solving a huge problem felt by millions of Americans.A universal problem that many of them would pay nearly any sum of money to solve. A product that I would quite likely use myself. And yet, one where I still have to wonder how on earth this can be a scalable, venture-funded business.

Sarah explained she had two concerns, one as a parent, the other as a reporter. Her concern as a parent was with the obvious safety concerns with trusting a stranger to drive your kid home from school. Her concern as a reporter was this...

I worry about any of these companies scaling given the costs and incredibly high bar for adding drivers to the system. Every step they take to reassure concerned parents like me means they grow slower and more expensively. Profitability will rely on services like these becoming part of a parent’s regular routine...

Fortunately, there were no major safety issues reported around the company, but judging by reports that the company is closing its doors, the concerns around Shuddle’s business model appear to have been entirely correct.

The company already lost its founder, Nick Allen, late last year. Allen had already started and quit another failed ridesharing company, Sidecar.  Still, Shuddle claimed it was still full steam ahead and, indeed, raised their latest $9m round as recently as last May.  

Then, yesterday morning, users received an email explaining that Shuddle will cease trading this afternoon having run out of cash…

On behalf of the entire team here at Shuddle, we are saddened to inform you that Shuddle will be ceasing operations and closing business as of end-of-the-day Friday, April 15th. We worked hard to find the financial resources that would allow us to continue to grow, but ultimately could not raise the funding required to continue operations.

So there you go. Poor old Shuddle. Sometimes it sucks to be right.

For a reminder of happier times, here’s Nick Allen speaking about Shuddle at Pando’s Dont’ Be Awful 24hr event…