As 2015 comes to a close, it’s a great time to reflect on our accomplishments and mistakes to prepare for a new year. We’re looking forward to 2016 which will be filled with exponential growth, hard work, and a roller-coaster ride of emotions. Before we get ahead of ourselves let’s take a look back at some highs and lows from our first year in business.
1. Our First Job – Might as well start where it all began on February 11th, 2015 when GoShare completed our first official job. We got a phone call from a man named Clay who asked if we could help him move. Initially, we told him that we weren’t open for business yet as our apps/website were not ready. Clay insisted that he didn’t care and just needed a man with a truck to help move out of a house. We accepted the job and asked one of our driver’s Steve to do the honor of completing our first job. The short version of the story is that we helped Clay move out of a crack house that day. You can read the long version of the story here.
2. TV Debut – They say that any press is good press and so far that has been true for us. Our first TV interview on CW 6 with in San Diego with Derek Staahl was very cool. GoShare was chosen as part of a mini series on San Diego startups and it was flattering to say the least. We had a lot of fun filming the segment at Discount Furniture Showroom, an early customer of ours. It would be the first but not the last time GoShare was on broadcast TV this year. Check out more press coverage.
3. EvoNexus – About a year ago we made a decision that it was in our best interest to join a startup incubator. If you are not familiar with incubators I recommend watching the show Silicon Valley on HBO for a humorous look into startup life at an incubator. EvoNexus is the premier startup incubator in Southern California with offices in San Diego, La Jolla, and Irvine. EvoNexus companies have gone on to raise more than $700 million in funding and outcomes. The application process was long and arduous. The competition was stiff with less than 10% of companies being accepted. After our first application was rejected in Sept. 2014 we were discouraged but decided to continue building our business. We reapplied in the spring and we were able to impress the committee enough to earn us a coveted spot in Cohort 16. The timing was great as we were launching our beta version at the same time. The incubator provided us a great environment to work in as well as a team of mentors, advisers, and entrepreneurs to guide us. Thanks Evo!
4. Winning Pitch Tech – In June of this year we entered our 2nd startup competition at Interactive Day San Diego. 100’s of companies applied and 10 were selected to pitch in front of three investors and an audience of about 100 marketers. The competition included several of our fellow EvoNexus companies and a few more promising startups from around San Diego. Going against the advice of our advisers we decided to play a video of the GoShare experience in the background during my 4 minute pitch instead of the traditional slide deck. The 3 investors chose us and Wrapify as their two favorites and we were given the opportunity to pitch in front of the entire conference of about 1,000 people. The audience was able to vote for their favorite using their smartphones. The crowd chose GoShare and awarded us $5,000 plus bragging rights! Read the full story here
5. Launch – It’s hard to put into words the challenges of launching a software company that was build from scratch but I will try to briefly explain. Managing the development process from concept to a fully functioning product is a long and frustrating journey that involves sleepless nights, mundane testing, and annoying bugs. After almost a years worth of work our engineering team was able to launch our MVP (minimum viable product) in the form of an iOS app and responsive website. The day that our app was approved by Apple was a joyous one even though the first version was pretty bad. The customer app worked well but the driver app did not. It took us a few months before we were able to get the apps and website to function properly. Watching our team work together to solve problems and create a new product that our customers love is probably the single greatest achievement of the year. This hard work has paid off in the form of more than 100 jobs created for our drivers, engineers, and sales people. We have also been able to help hundreds of people and businesses when they needed a friend with a truck. Now it’s time to share our product/service with the world and help more people move, haul, and deliver large items on demand. Thank you to everyone who has helped GoShare get to this point, we couldn’t have done it without your support. Happy New Year!