According to a recent Quora thread (h/t Valleywag), Clinkle — the mobile payments startup founded by 22-year-old Stanford grad Lucas Duplan — is hemorrhaging employees, cash and overall dignity.
On December 12, one anonymous commenter wrote that Duplan gave himself a six-figure salary while paying workers “far below market rate,” and says many employees quit after finding that Duplan lied about the size of the company stock option pool.
According to the former employee, “The launch date for the product changed countless times during my tenure at the company. Many people do not enjoy doing work that does not see the light of day, especially when the expectation keeps getting set that we’re launching ‘next month.'”
One post from November 27, purported to be written by two anonymous former Clinkle employees who “had enough and quit,” listed the names of 31 employees that have left the company — many of them affiliated with Stanford. The post goes on to call Duplan a “shark,” as the two employees claimed they received none of their promised equity.
Clinkle raised Silicon Valley’s largest seed funding round in history back in June; the $25 million ‘party round’ featured support from Peter Thiel, Andreessen Horowitz, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff and many others. Clinkle also made national headlines in April, when over 20 Stanford students left the university to join the startup. The startup released a commercial in October, although there is no word on when the actual product will launch.