Startup silenced – Talkr up for sale

Talkr, a text-to-speech web service that lets readers


to written blog posts, has put itself up for sale after failing to turn a profit in two years.

Founder Chris Brooks revealed that 2,173 bloggers had bought into the service but that only 1,179 of them had agreed to accept audio advertising in the posts that Talkr converts.

So Brooks has put the site, started in March 2005, up for sale on eBay – an increasingly common exit strategy for failed startups like Zookoda and Kiko in the last couple of years.

Brooks said that, despite the rise of audio services like podcasting, he had been unable to monetise Talkr, which costs $313 per month to run:

“I began work on Talkr in March of 2005, and after nearly two years of banging on this idea, I have decided to try to find it a permanent corporate home. I strongly believe that Talkr will thrive as methods of monetising podcasts become simpler and more robust. Bloggers will provide content and distribution and Talkr will provide increasingly sophisticated text to speech, and ad integration.”

The company’s reserve price on eBay is $10,000.