Scottish taxi advertising company Cabtivate has called in a liquidator just two months after it announced ambitious plans to launch in London.
The Edinburgh-based business, which operates in Bristol, Glasgow and Manchester, is understood to have ceased trading after amassing debts of several hundred thousand pounds.
The firm installs small television screens in the back of taxis and sells advertising on them. Its clients included Strathclyde Police, which signed a £500,000 deal with Cabtivate to screen crime appeals to passengers in the Glasgow area.
In November, Cabtivate announced its intention to launch in London and said it had received more than 350 advance orders from taxi operators in the capital. Cabivate founder Mark Greenlaugh said the company was turning over £3.4m at that time.
Rival service Cabvision has been rolling out its service in London. Last March, it launched an interactive advertising service in cabs and earlier this month, it launched a bespoke channel for airport operator BAA (MW January 4).
Greenlaugh, a former Edinburgh taxi driver, appeared on BBC entrepreneurial show Dragons Den in 2004, looking for extra funding of up to £500,000 to build his year-old, 30-strong Edinburgh-based fleet. Despite being turned down by the "Dragons" he went on to secure £100,000 in funding.
Liquidators Begbies Traynor says the firm has now "run into cash flow difficulties" and employees are expected to lose their jobs.