HQ, which made the once-pop­u­lar HQ Triv­ia app, is shut­ting down and lay­ing off its 25 employ­ees, accord­ing to CNN Busi­ness.

HQ CEO Rus Yusupov report­ed­ly sent a note to employ­ees announc­ing that HQ would cease oper­a­tions. In the note, he said that there had been an offer “from an estab­lished busi­ness” to acquire HQ that had a clos­ing date of tomor­row, but that the poten­tial acquir­er “sud­den­ly changed their posi­tion.” You can read the full note below:

HQ CEO Rus Yusupov just sent a note to staffers (25 full-time employ­ees): “This is one of the hard­est things to do in my life, and I’m real­ly sor­ry for any dis­rup­tion this may cause you and our play­ers.” https://t.co/xmVWdVIFv7 pic.twitter.com/MOWfs434m1

— Ker­ry Fly­nn (@kerrymflynn) Feb­ru­ary 14, 2020

The HQ Triv­ia app launched in 2017 and quick­ly became a huge hit in part due to the nov­el live nature of the game, its real cash prizes, and because of pop­u­lar host Scott Rogowsky. Over time, though, the app slow­ly start­ed to lose pop­u­lar­i­ty and even its host: Rogowsky announced last April that he would be leav­ing to host a base­ball show on sports stream­ing ser­vice DAZN.

HQ also tried a vari­ety of ideas to keep users engaged with HQ Triv­ia, such as extra lives for play­ing mul­ti­ple games in a row and an in-per­son event with a $10,000 prize. And in 2018, HQ released a sec­ond live game, a Wheel of For­tune-style game called HQ Words. But it seems the company’s efforts weren’t enough to keep users inter­est­ed in its games after the nov­el­ty wore off.

The com­pa­ny was found­ed by two co-founders of Vine, Yusupov and Col­in Kroll. Kroll, who was for­mer­ly HQ’s CEO, died of an acci­den­tal drug over­dose in Decem­ber 2018.

Image: HQ

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