Booktrope plans to go out of business at the end of May, bringing an end to its “team publishing” platform used by ad hoc groups of authors, editors, marketers and designers to create and market print books and e-books.
The Seattle startup, which went through the prestigious Y Combinator accelerator program, announced the news Friday in a message on its site and a detailed email to users from the company’s executives.
“Much has been accomplished by Booktrope and our community over the past six years,” read the email from CEO and co-founder Ken Shear; co-founder and CTO Andy Roberts; and COO Jennifer Gilbert. “But even with a collection of excellent books and with very strong contributions by creative teams who’ve provided editing, design and marketing services, Booktrope books have not generated sufficient revenues to make the business viable.”
The company raised $1.2 million in seed funding a year ago, which co-founder and chief marketing officer Katherine Sears described at the time as the culmination of its participation in Y-Combinator — “where we were the oldest founders in their history,” she noted. Khosla Ventures was the lead investor in the round.
Booktrope says in a message on its site: “We are deeply saddened to report Booktrope is ceasing business effective May 31, 2016. We are not accepting submissions and production is complete.
“Booktrope has helped hundreds of authors get over 4 million copies of their books into the hands of readers. We are proud our creative teams have produced almost 1000 books using our platform. Thank you to all readers, authors, investors, partners, and creative team members who were a part of this journey with us.”
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