Smartphone repairing startup Save gets picked up by Remade Group

The last time I wrote about Save, the French startup had just raised $16.7 million to prove that you could scale smartphone repair services. It’s been a roller coaster ride since then as the company had to claim insolvency. After this process, Remade Group is picking up Save’s business and employees.

While the startup managed to grow quite rapidly, it was hard to keep up with the pace. There were some logistics issues and some international expansion moves that didn’t work.

I’ve heard some crazy board meeting stories about Save. Nobody could agree on what to do. Some wanted to fire the management team, others wanted to fire board members, while the startup wanted to raise more money from a German investor. Eventually, everything fell through and Save ended up filing for insolvency.

It’s quite expensive to pay for 500 employees working across 137 shops (most of them in French malls). Save had to fire part of the team, focus on the most profitable areas of the company and optimize everything.

Third-party companies could then bid to… save Save. Usually, the court looks at all the offers and chooses the best one for employees and the future of the company.

Update: Damien Morin tells me that the operation wasn’t actually an acquisition resulting from the insolvency. It’s a cash and stock deal so shareholders will also get back some of their money. The management team will stay at the company. “It’s nearly a merger,” Morin said.

Remade Group is a French company that sells refurbished smartphones. According to Save CEO Damien Morin, Remade Group is paying back the debts (Update: Remade Group isn’t paying back the debts directly, Save is paying back its debts with the acquisition money) and the brand Save will still operate. You’ll still be able to find Save shops in your favorite malls. And Save employees will still have a job.

Save grew too quickly and couldn’t keep up with its insane growth rate. Maybe the startup could have grown a bit more slowly. But when you raise $16.7 million, the stakes suddenly becomes much bigger as everybody expects a big exit from you.

It’s easy to look back and retrospectively find out what went wrong. So I’m not going to blame Save for their ambitious goals.