In what is pretty shocking news today, The Times-Picayune's Todd Price reports that Dinner Lab, the New Orleans start-up and forever-expanding pop-up supper club, has shut down for good. In a letter to its 150,000+ members nationwide, the roving supper club states:
It is with a very heavy heart that we have to tell you, but effective immediately, Dinner Lab will be suspending operations and halting events.
We put every ounce of our energy into developing a product that you wanted to engage with regularly, but we weren't able to turn the corner on creating a profitable enough enterprise to support our ambitions.
Since launching 3.5 years ago, CEO Brian Bordainick and team have expanded to 20+ cities, received over $9 million in private investments including $2 million dollars that went toward a catering expansion, and have even promised the first crowd-sourced restaurant of its kind, which never came to fruition.
In October 2015, the company dropped its steep membership fee. It then purchased San Francisco-based roving tasting club Dish Crawl two months later, while also laying off 30 employees. In March, the company announced that it was victim to $64,000 in check fraud.
Update: Todd Price is now reporting that Dinner Lab has been forced to shut down due to the loss of a private investor. Locally, the company has nearly 50 employees who will be out of a job. [NOLA.com]