It is with a heavy heart and tears that I write to you today. It is one of the most difficult thing I have ever had to do in my life. I’ve owned and operated PathWrangler for 5 years now and when I started this company, I could never imagine the amazing people and incredible community that came together around a simple web app for organizing trips.
After all blood, sweat and tears that went into making this happen, I’ve come to the decision that I am going to close PathWrangler on March 21, 2015.
So, why? Well, of course, the primary reason is simple: we just don’t have enough paying subscribers to make this thing go as a technology business anymore. We’ve been able to build a nice profitable business, which is rare for a tech company that hasn’t taken any outside capital. But, we just haven’t been able to make enough money to take this web app to a place that our standards demand. Engineering talent is very expensive and it has gotten to the point where I am paying almost all of it out of my own pocket.
We have been challenged by people to raise our subscription prices, but we built this app for small businesses and know how every dollar counts. We couldn’t in good conscience ask our clients to pony up more of their hard earned dollars to get the same service for more money.
We have had offers from other companies to buy PathWrangler. But, in every case, we knew they prospective buyers were not interested in the technology; they just wanted our client base to move to their platforms. We didn’t think it was in your interests to pass the buck to another entity. I didn’t get into this business for the money, it was to serve a community. So, we’ve declined all of these purchase offers so far and don’t see any potential with another company that shares our values in serving our clients.
This decision may seem sudden, but it is has been something I’ve been wrestling with for months behind the scenes. I put every dollar I ever had into this business and I am personally dead broke. Like paying rent and groceries with a credit card, broke. I started this business on my terms, so I could gain the independence and freedom that comes with it, so I’m going to end it on my terms. If I personally had more money to keep this running up to the standards I demand, I would. But I don’t.
There is really so much more, but I don’t want to make this anymore self-gratifying than it is already is. I cannot thank everyone reading this enough for being a part of our family here. I am going to miss the interactions I have with you everyday, the amazing trips, the visions, the exploration and the friendships developed. I never imagined the incredible impact you would all have on my life and I certainly never anticipated having to write this email. It is ripping my heart out of my chest that we ultimately failed in realizing our vision to serve you.
There will be more upcoming, but for now, if you have any inquiries, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you everyone.
Doug Heinz – CEO Founder