UK DOOH Startup In Shambles After Founders Scrap With Investors, Admit Cloning IP

April 27, 2020 by Dave Haynes

It is as difficult to keep up with digital out of home buying platforms as it is tracking digital signage CMS software companies, so I don’t feel all that bad about knowing absolutely nothing about the UK startup Bidooh.

The online publisher BusinessCloud has a piece up about the company, at one point a high flyer and now on life support, with lawyers involved and allegations the founders effectively cloned the business after falling out the board/investors.

Co-founders Abdul Alim and Shahzad Mughal were facing a day in court over claims of copyright infringement, misuse of confidential information, breach of their fiduciary duties as directors and of their shareholders’ agreements.

They passed on that, and instead admitted to all claims made against them and consented to judgement being entered for these claims. 

From BusinessCloud:

As rise and falls go the story of Abdul Alim and Shahzad Mughal reads like a film script.

Back in 2014 the duo from Greater Manchester were looking for inspiration for a business idea when they decided to watch the 2002 sci-fi movie Minority Report.

“There’s a scene in Minority Report where Tom Cruise walks into a shopping centre and all the boards start to change and begin talking to him,” recalled Alim. “We thought ‘wow, if we could build that, it’d be amazing’.”

Within 18 months the pair had launched OfferMoments (rebranded as Bidooh in 2018) and embarked on a journey that saw them meet the Queen, travel the world, raise millions of pounds in investment and even spark talk of being the next unicorn.

This week Alim and Mughal were back in the headlines again – but for altogether different reasons. The duo admitted to cloning the business after six months of legal action brought against them by the very company they founded.

The deception, which went back months, was played out in legal documents filed at the High Court of Justice in London and Alim and Mughal have until April 29 to pay Bidooh’s interim costs of £80,000.

“I dreamt of building a multi-million pound company,” Alim (pictured below) told BusinessCloud. “Now I’ve got nothing.”

What’s unusual is he doesn’t dispute any of the facts of the court case. He admits to going behind his investors’ backs and cloning the business he co-founded with a view to going into partnership with a new third party.

He even admits to sending offensive messages on WhatsApp about fellow Bidooh stakeholders. “When your blood is boiling you say things out of line,” he said. “I regret some of the things I said.”

Nutty … full post here …

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