Dubai-based baby products ecommerce platform Sprii has been placed into liquidation after running out of cash, MENAbytes has learned. A board resolution was passed to place the company into liquidation, appointing accounting firm Grant Thornton as its liquidator.
Sprii’s founder and CEO Sarah Jones wrote a letter to stakeholders informing them about the decision.
“As a result of our inability to raise further capital to support the ongoing trading of Sprii, coupled with the conclusion of an unsuccessful campaign to sell the business, I have been forced to take significant steps that will impact the future of the business,” said Jones in the letter, which was seen by MENAbytes.
The startup had raised close to USD 15 million, including USD 8.5 million in Series A funding that was announced in June last year, making it the second most funded startup in the category within the region. (Mumzworld is the most funded company in this vertical.) Sprii never disclosed the identities of its investors. In its last announcement, the company said the investment came from new strategic players with interests across the retail, logistics, and finance spaces.
MENAbytes has learned but has not been able to confirm that the startup was recently in talks with a large Saudi retail group to raise funding, but results did not materialize.
Sprii hasn’t been able to pay its vendors for at least two months. The liquidator, according to the letter, is undertaking an urgent financial assessment of the business to enter into an accelerated sale campaign.
“This is an incredibly sad day for all stakeholders in Sprii. If a sale of the business is not possible, I will be working hard to rehouse all of our team. I appreciate that many of you will feel pain here too, and I will work tirelessly with the Liquidator to ensure the best result is achieved for all creditors,” stated Jones in her letter.
The startup has decided to cease trading. Sprii’s website now takes visitors to a maintenance page, which says, “This website is currently undergoing scheduled maintenance.” Sprii’s Facebook and Twitter pages have also been taken down.
The platform started in 2014 as Mini Exchange and was rebranded as Sprii in 2017. It used to sell a wide range of products for babies and mothers in the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia (where it expanded to last year). According to LinkedIn data, Sprii employs over 100 people.
Two other Dubai-based e-commerce startups, Awok and The Modist, shut down earlier this year, after raising tens of millions of dollars.
This article was first published by MENAbytes.