Black-owned startup Goodfynd just hit the $100,000 revenue mark last month.
Cofounded by Kyle Miller and Lemaire Stewart two years ago, the company aims to make locally made food more accessible by connecting users to food trucks in their area, while enabling small and growing food businesses to better connect with their communities. Miller and Stewart began their business relationship during their time studying at Virginia Tech. Fast forward a few years to now, when they’re running Goodfynd together alongside COO Sofie Abdul and Patrick Powell, the company’s head of outreach.
“It was exciting in terms of hitting a milestone,” Abdul told Techncal.ly. “We’re over that threshold now.”
Goodfynd takes a commission on each transaction made on the platform, which is run through an iOS and Android app, along with its website. Miller said the company is pushing users to use the website platform because that’s where the most up-to-date information is shared.
“Reaching a milestone and maintaining our integrity to help small businesses thrive as well as thriving as a small business ourselves has been exciting and really a great model to look at,” Abdul said, “because there are so many of our competitors who do it differently.”
As a user, you can find food trucks near you as well as see which ones are accepting preorders to either schedule for the same day or as far as five days out. As a food truck owner, you have the ability to set your schedule, manage your menu and accept preorders. Food truck operators can also sign up for Goodfynd events in partnership with properties to bring food operations to different areas.
“Right now it is free but we are working toward a paid model with analytics,” Miller said.
Miller and Stewart were a part of the second cohort of social impact entrepreneurs for SEED SPOT’s accelerator in spring 2019. We also featured Goodfynd last month in our list of 10 local Black-owned businesses you should know.
Miller, a UX designer, sparked the idea for Goodfynd after he wanted to be able to search for fast food options, like food trucks, near him. He took the idea to Stewart, a software engineer, who then began building the first prototype of their online platform. The bootstrapped company is operational in D.C., Maryland and Virginia. Miller said the company has more food trucks going into Virginia right now, during COVID-19.
“I think we are really lucky in the way that customer behavior, the attributes, are just trending toward our business model naturally, which is really good for us,” Abdul said. “I know there’s a lot of news about Starbucks and other tech companies that are taking 18 months-plus to now switch to a model that we already have [such as] curbside pickup, contactless ordering and this notion of skipping the line and doing things ahead of time.”
Abdul said one thing the company had to change is who it targets. Typically in D.C., the M Street NW area and down by the monuments were a hot spot for food trucks but with businesses closed due to the health crisis, that’s not so true anymore. Instead of targeting businesses, Goodfynd is now targeting residential buildings and supporting outside events to attract customers.
“We’ve really benefited on customer behavior turning to the model that preexisted for us,” Abdul said. “Now I’m like, ‘Man, we made some early good bets,’ without knowing it.”
So what’s next for Goodfynd? The startup is working on raising a pre-seed round of funding and has been providing some aid for healthcare workers, delivering more than 700 meals to healthcare professionals since the beginning of the pandemic.-30-
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