what-happened-to-juicero

What happened to Juicero?

Juicero was a manufacturer of juicing machines founded by Doug Evans in 2013. The Juicero Press was overpriced at launch and only squeezed juice from branded, pre-packaged food and vegetable sachets. Juicero’s flagship product was rendered obsolete after Bloomberg News reported that juice of similar quality and quantity could be obtained by hand-squeezing. Juicero machines were also needlessly complex, with Evans taking design and engineering cues from Apple. This is a great example of a good idea, killed by bad execution.

Background

Juicero was a manufacturer of fruit and vegetable juicing machines. The company was founded by Doug Evans in 2013.

The flagship Juicero Press used single-serve packets of diced fruits and vegetables sold to consumers on a subscription basis. Each Juicero Press also offered Wi-Fi connectivity.

Juicero claimed its machines and smart packaging helped consumers eat more healthily, but the company was embroiled in controversy seemingly from day one.

So what happened to Juicero? Following is a look at the intriguing story of yet another tech start-up collapsing after receiving substantial investor funding.

The Juicero Press

When the Juicero Press was first released in 2016, it was priced at $699. The price was then reduced to $399 early in 2017 after abysmal sales. 

Each pre-packaged serving of fruit and vegetable had a QR code that needed to be scanned and verified by the juicer while connected to the internet.

Former CEO Jeff Dunn argued that this prevented produce from being used past its expiration date, but consumers saw the measure as prohibiting them from juicing their own fruit and vegetables.

The Juicero Press was thus expensive to purchase and also to use, with fruit and vegetable packs typically costing between $5-$7.

Bloomberg controversy

The Juicero Press suffered further criticism in 2017 after Bloomberg News published a story implying the proprietary produce packs could be squeezed by hand.

Not only could they be squeezed by hand, but the resultant juice was comparable in quality and quantity to juice produced from the $399 machine.

The company jumped to the defense of the Juicero Press, claiming that squeezing by hand created a mess and detracted from the user experience. 

Nevertheless, it offered a refund to disgruntled customers and no doubt suffered further reputational damage.

Over-engineering

Venture capitalist Ben Einstein disassembled his juicer and noted it was “an incredibly complicated piece of engineering” for a fundamentally simple process.

The internal elements of the juicer were assembled with great attention to detail and a polymer used for white components underwent 8 separate revisions before acceptance. 

Raising nearly $120 million before shipping a single product, the Juicero product design team was unconstrained by money or time. They were also under the guidance of Evans, who had worked with Jobs in a previous life and considered him to be a major design inspiration.

Ceasing operations

By June of 2017, Juicero had terminated 25% of its workforce and was making a 4 million dollar loss each month.

On September 1, 2017, Juicero announced it would be ceasing operations and suspending sales of the Juicero Press after only 16 months on sale.

Aside from its flagship product being too expensive and not solving a genuine problem, distribution was also underdeveloped. Announcing the shutdown, the company noted that it:

became clear that creating an effective manufacturing and distribution system for a nationwide customer base requires infrastructure that we cannot achieve on our own as a standalone business.

Key takeaways:

  • Juicero was a manufacturer of juicing machines founded by Doug Evans in 2013. The Juicero Press was overpriced at launch and only squeezed juice from branded, pre-packaged food and vegetable sachets.
  • Juicero’s flagship product was rendered obsolete after Bloomberg News reported that juice of similar quality and quantity could be obtained by hand-squeezing.
  • Juicero machines were also needlessly complex, with Evans taking design and engineering cues from Apple. Ultimately, the Juicero Press was too expensive and did not address a significant consumer problem. If it had sold in any great quantity, it would also have been hampered by a weak distribution network.

Other Failure Stories

What Happened to WeWork

what-happened-to-wework
WeWork is a commercial real estate company providing shared workspaces for tech start-ups and other enterprise services. It was founded by Adam Neumann and Miguel McKelvey in 2010. WeWork’s business model was built on complex arrangements between the company and its landlords. There were also several conflicts of interest between Neumann and WeWork, which provided the impetus for the failed IPO and significant devaluation that would follow.

What Happened to Netscape

what-happened-to-netscape
Netscape – or Netscape Communications Corporation – was a computer services company best known for its web browser. The company was founded in 1994 by Marc Andreessen and James H. Clark as one of the internet’s first and most important start-ups. The Netscape Navigator web browser was released in 1995 and became the browser of choice for the users of the time. By November 1998, it had been acquired by AOL, which tried unsuccessfully to revive the popularity of the web browser. Ten years later, Netscape was shut down entirely.

What Happened to Musical.ly

what-happened-to-musically
Musically, or Musical.ly as it is officially known, was a Chinese social media platform headquartered in Shanghai. After passing 200 million users in May 2017, the platform was shut down by tech company ByteDance in November. After its acquisition, ByteDance suggested Musical.ly would continue to operate as a standalone platform. Company representatives noted that it would be able to leverage ByteDance’s AI technology and enormous reach in the Chinese market. Musically was ultimately absorbed into TikTok in June 2018, with the app no longer available in August of the same year. Existing users were offered technical support and several new features as a sweetener.

What Happened to Vine

what-happened-to-vine
Vine was an American video social networking platform with a focus on looping video clips of six seconds in length, founded by Dom Hofmann, Rus Yusupov, and Colin Kroll in 2012 to help people capture casual moments in their lives and share them with their friends. Vine went on to become a massively popular platform. Yet by 2016, Twitter discontinued the mobile app, allowing users to view or download content on the Vine website. It then announced a reconfigured app allowing creators to share content to a connected Twitter account only. This marked the end of Vine.

What Happened to CNN Plus

what-happened-to-cnn-plus
CNN Plus was a video streaming service and offshoot of CNN’s cable TV news network that was launched on March 29, 2022. The service was ultimately shut down just one month after it was launched. Trouble began for the platform when parent company WarnerMedia merged with Discovery. The latter was unimpressed with paltry viewer data and, with $55 billion in debt to clear, was not interested in funding CNN+ moving forward. Other contributing factors to CNN Plus’s demise include a lack of compelling content and streaming service market saturation.

What Happened to Clubhouse

what-happened-to-clubhouse
Clubhouse is a social app that allows thousands of people to communicate with each other in audio chat rooms. At one point, the company was worth $4 billion and boasted users such as Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk. Clubhouse declined because it rode the wave of pandemic lockdowns and suffered when people resumed their normal routines. The decision to remove the invite-only feature also caused a rapid influx of new members and removed any exclusivity. Clubhouse management also failed to define a business model and was unaware of the components of a successful social media site.

What Happened to Facebook

what-happened-to-facebook

Main Free Guides:

Scroll to Top
FourWeekMBA