Troubled UK unicorn Ve Interactive is in the process of going into administration this afternoon, in the latest sign of the scale of over-valuation for Britain’s unicorns — startups valued at over $1bn.
The company’s executives are currently in an administration hearing in London, the terms of which are being discussed in court today, according to two sources close to the company, report Kadhim Shubber and Madhumita Murgia in London.
Just last month, the advertising technology startup’s valuation was slashed from £1.5bn to just £300m. The steep dive came with an emergency £3m funding round earlier in March that rescued the company from the brink of disaster.
As the FT revealed weeks earlier, Ve Interactive has struggled to pay its employees on time each month since December and its founder and chief executive David Brown has left the company, though he remains an “adviser”. It now has a new boss and a new board who are working to raise new funding and get the company back on track — with almost 1,000 staff and 36 offices, job losses were already seeming likely.
The company has not taken venture-capital funding, instead raising around £50m from about 500 individual investors, according to investor documents seen by FT Alphaville.