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Transport marketplace Pombai goes to the great incubator in the sky

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A website for discovering and booking buses, ferries and trains in Asia, Pombai, shut down this month, though not for a lack of heart.

Founder and CEO Joseph Finkenbinder tells Tnooz:

We couldn’t get the funding necessary to keep going so I had to shut it down.

It’s not official yet but since the funding wasn’t there it’s in inevitable and I’ve begun the paperwork for closing down the legal structure.

We had started selling tickets and have had customers from China, USA, France, Germany, and more.

Our biggest problem was getting local bus companies to use us as a channel. We were basically force-feeding them customers, but they were slow to understand the value. It’s still a new sector.”

Angel funding of $60,000 had come by way of US investors and from Startup Bootcamp Dublin, the TechStars European affiliate. Tnooz had featured it in the TLabs Showcase, and at one point the company had a team of 10 Chinese, American, Lithuanian, and Nepalese software developers, designers, and business staff building the product.

pombai closes

The closure of the Bangkok-headquartered business comes despite positive local coverage in one of the Asian equivalents of TechCrunch.

Over in India, similar startup Redbus seems to be staying in the black.

We hope that the founder, who showed great promise as an entrepreneur and who has decamped to Beijing to become an English teacher, will try his hand at another startup again in the future.

Original author: Sean O'Neill
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