Cinder Grill creator files for bankruptcy, leaves backers in the cold

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The Cinder Grill made a major splash on crowdfunding platform Indiegogo by promising backers perfectly grilled food in a matter of minutes. Instead, most people who gave money to the project are getting the shaft. The creators of the Cinder smart grill have filed for bankruptcy and won’t be able to fulfill orders of their product.

Despite raising more than $550,000 on Indiegogo from nearly 1,000 backers interested in getting their hands on the grill, Cinder makers Palate Home has never been able to get operations off the ground. The updates tab on its Indiegogo page is filled with delays and an inability to assure backers of when the grills will start shipping.

Things got even worse for Palate Home last month when the company was ordered by a California court to repay a $250,000 convertible note, plus interest, to an investment firm that had backed it, according to The Spoon.

All of those issues came to a head this week when Palate Home filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and announced the official shutdown of the company. In a note to backers posted on Indiegogo, Palate Home CEO Eric Norman said a lawsuit filed against the company “was the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back,” as it reduced the available resources the company had to fulfill orders.

He also noted that company “was simply not able to sell enough product, or produce that product consistently and economically.”

As a result of declaring bankruptcy, all assets owned by Palate Home will be sold off to pay its creditors, meaning the intellectual property for the grill may wind up in the hands of someone else that is capable of mass-producing the grill or integrating it into another product. Or the idea may just disappear forever. It’s hard to say what will happen.

Previous Indiegogo updates indicate that there are some Cinder grills in warehouses in China that were intended to be shipped. It’s unclear what will happen to those devices. For backers who handed over cash to the Indiegogo campaign in hopes of helping make the Cinder grill a reality, the odds are they will never receive the grill they were promised.

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