While you spent the summer day-drinking, the wunderkind founder of mysterious payments startup “Clinkle” was hard at work. Three months on, it’s no clearer what the startup, which was somehow able to net a $25 million seed round, actually does. Yet AllThingsD reports that the company has managed to sign Richard Branson as yet another investor.
Clinkle has also debuted an ad to sell us on the merits of this as-yet-unrevealed piece of technology. Rather than getting specific, though, they decided to go high concept. In fact, we’d say it’s all concept, no pitch.
The ad (on Vimeo, of course) is titled “We’re All In This Together.” The description: “Clinkle is a movement to modernize the way people transact.” What follows is two minutes of shallow platitudes masquerading as a manifesto, involving a violinist, a professor and barista suddenly going all Invisible Man:
“We’re all connected. What ties us together is the story we forget. Every day we wake and make the world again.” Sorry, but what does that have to do with how I pay for my coffee and donuts every morning? I’m looking to eliminate quarters from my purse, not fend off hugs from strangers.
The ingenue Mr. Duplan admitted to AllThingsD that he spent “Probably more than I should have” on the ad, but explained his decision like so:
“In order for this to work, we need everyone to buy in,” Duplan said in an interview, attempting to explain the idea behind the video. “It’s really important to rally and get everyone behind the movement. Because our network is only as good as the people on it.”
Could everyone please stop trying to turn every venture-backed app into some sort of spiritual renaissance? All these half-baked attempts at transcendence are giving me a headache.