There’s a number of gossips around the big stealth mode Finnish startup Fruugo currently. The rumor has it they are firing a lot of their employees, their product is late from launch and it hasn’t been that well received by potential customers. Fruugo commented earlier they are aiming to become the “trusted 3rd party of e-commerce”, set out to solve the problems in the internet ecommerce supply chain making online shopping safer, and “more fun”, for both consumers and etailers.

Fruugo is assumed to have tens of millions in funding, and they state having 150 employees. Taneli Tikka also addressed the rumors in his recent blog post, mentioning Fruugo may have been still hiring last month. Fruugo is burning through the cash quite fast with that amount of employees. However, even if the company would be spending around 1M 11M euros [typo corrected] per year, the assumed funding of tens of millions should be enough to carry on operations for quite some time still. If the funding is not as generous, though, Fruugo might be having tough time in the current economic situation.

Fruugo’s CEO Reijo Syrjäläinen mentioned in our interview in the summer that the service would be available in closed Beta in a few months. We should see that coming up very soon if the rumors are not true. Taneli has also heard Fruugo would be going for bigger PR at SIME Stockholm.

Building a service sized what Fruugo’s comments so far hint of, is likely to be a huge and difficult a task. Thus it may not be any surprise if the old “Pi rule” of startups might have gotten Fruugo as well (take your original plan and multiply the time-to-market by Pi, and divide the expected revenue by Pi).

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