Amid one of the biggest economic downturns in world history a startup has spent £35,000 on a web app which was built with no monetisation strategy and no revenues. Guess what? It’s now for sale.
Developing the site by himself, founder Stas Murzynowski created Letsallshare.com to allow anyone to rent or “share” anything or anywhere. RentMineOnline in the US and Zilok on Europe have had some success putting such “rent anything” sites together, but they at least wrapped their sites in business models.
Letsallshare members build new communities (sharing groups) post stuff, request items and invite others. Unfortunately, has Murzynowski “no idea” how much traffic the site gets, how many people use it or many successful “shares” it has facilitated, since the site’s admin tool is too basic. However since its launch in April 2008, it has had some press from environmental sites and magazines.
Murzynowski told me: “You need to remember that having had the idea I simply went about getting it built. I am not in any way versed in IT or reporting skills. What I had was an idea and the capital to self fund the build (circa £35k). I had hoped that I would have time to learn the various reporting elements but quite simply I ran out of time and my priorities moved elsewhere.”
So what now? Well, Murzynowski is now looking for someone to either take over the running of the site in return for equity or indeed to sell the site lock-stock-and-barrel. He says he no longer has time to run the site, or the cash to pump into it.
My personal view is that there might be something of value here. Freecycle has garnered thousands users globally interested in a) getting things free and b) preventing old items end up in landfill, for environmental reasons. But whether that model is monetisable is anyone’s guess.