Claes Loberg, the founder of Guvera, the imploded streaming service which burnt through an estimated $180 million and is facing an ASIC investigation, is already plotting his next “wild” venture in the creative space.
In a new interview with The Australian, Loberg, the Swedish-born tech entrepreneur who is understood to have bailed on the Gold Coast for a new life in Jakarta, lays the blame for Guvera’s impressive crash and burn on his capital partners Darren Herft and AMMA Private Equity.
“The most important (lesson) is to choose your capital partners wisely,” Loberg told the national daily. “Now I’m back to square one. I’m working with a few great friends I’ve met along the way to do something wild in that creative and innovation space again. Not sure where it will land. I’m exploring.”
No doubt, Loberg’s next move will be closely watched.
Guvera was founded by Herft, Loberg and Brad Christiansen in 2008 and launched two years later.
“We’re an alternative way for advertisers to connect with consumers, and we’re dragging the old broadcast model from the ‘50s kicking and screaming into this interactive era,” Loberg told this reporter in the days leading up to its full commercial arrival. “We’re trying to create a truly sustainable solution.”
It didn’t turn out that way.
The lights went out at the streaming app in May, nearly a year after the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) blocked the company’s bid to go public. When the dust settled, Guvera had reportedly chewed up more than $180 million from about 3,000 investors, many of whom are demanding to know where the money went.
ASIC’s probe is understood to be focussing on alleged commissions and other fees paid to accountants for referring their clients to a Guvera-linked investment company, AMMA Private Equity, according to the ABC.