"In the past year, the Lily family has had many ups and downs", stated Lily's cofounders Henry Bradlow and Antoine Balaresque in a joint blog post. It will be returned to the card original used to place the order; if your card has subsequently been cancelled or renewed, customers are being asked to contact Lily to make other arrangements. One source that was informed of the company's troubles said that Lily had been trying to bring in an additional $15 million after having already raised $15 million by December 2015. "Over the past few months, we have tried to secure financing in order to unlock our manufacturing line and ship our first units - but have been unable to do this", they said.
Lily's demise is the latest high-profile blunder in the hard consumer drone industry. As a result of this financial crisis, plans for winding down the company are on and the customers will receive refunds. A lithium-ion battery promised 20 minutes of flight time on a two-hour charge; the drone also has an IP67 waterproof rating.
During that time, similar follow-me drones from Chinese companies DJI, Zero Zero Robotics and Yuneec have hit the market. Video reviews by outlets such as The Guardian showed a fickle prototype that did not have the full capabilities that were shown in the advertisement.
Even though the company managed to get at least 60,000 pre-orders, the years without a product on the shelves and multiple launch delays dwindled the company's funds until there wasn't enough left to actually manufacture and ship the drone. When launched, Lily said it expected to be out by February 2016. While they were delighted by the steady advancements in the quality of their product, they have been racing against the clock of "ever-diminishing funds".
"Our community was the drive that kept us going even as circumstances became more and more hard", the blog said. Customers who have changed their card since can fill out this form which will enable the company to refund the amount by either Paypal or Cheque. In late 2015, Lily reeled in $14 million in funding from 14 investors including Spark Capital and Winklevoss Capital.