BuyWithMe, a daily deals startup that had been acquiring companies right and left this year, appears to be going under. The startup has failed to find funding and is now laying off half its workforce. CEO Jim Crowley announced yesterday that at least 100 people will be let go today unless the company finds a last minute buyer.
According to a report by BetaBeat (and several tipsters here), the company was unable to raise the funding it needed. BetaBeat, who spoke to an unnamed employee, reports that BuyWithMe tried to raise a hundred million dollars at a $500 million valuation. The valuation was too high, and the company had no takers.
The layoffs are only the beginning of what may be shaping up to be a bad situation for this company, which is out of money and, according to one source, “folding.”
BuyWithMe made its sixth acquisition in September, with its purchase of San Francisco-based TownHog . It previously acquired NYC’s Scoop St, Chicago deals site DealADayOnline, San Francisco deals site Swoop, loyalty company Edhance, and deals site LocalTwist. It had raised $21.5 million from Bain Capital Ventures and Matrix Partners.
Update: BetaBeat reports today that the company tried to buy its way to growth, but it was “all for show.”
Update #2: Here’s the official statement from CEO Jim Crowley:
BuyWithMe did have a significant reduction in staffing this week. We did this so the company is in the best position to continue to serve its merchants and members. As an organization we’re continuing to pursue our business and to support our customers throughout the country.
BuyWithMe is the premier group buying website where leading local merchants offer exclusive limited time offers to members of the BuyWithMe community. Through the power of its numbers, BuyWithMe negotiates handpicked group discounts for its customers to access at spas, restaurants, health clubs, bars and other local activities in their city. BuyWithMe currently publishes daily deals in 12 major DMAs, including Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Phoenix, New York, and San Diego. BuyWithMe is...