Pulse of a NYC Techstar: Homemade, Tools For Home Cooks To Sell On Mobile



In this post we are talking to Nick Devane, co-founder and CEO of Homemade, Techstars ’15 company from New York.

1. What is Homemade in 140 characters?

Homemade is an easy way for cooks to sell food from home, on mobile.

2. Why did you start the company?

We started the company because we wanted to find a way to use the digital world to share the food experiences we grew up with.
While observing and working in the food industry, we realized this core competency for cooking was shared by a huge number of people, without access to distribution.

3. Why would a chef choose to sell food on Homemade?

Cooks chose Homemade because of the flexibility and opportunity to share their own cooking, while still making good money.

4. How many chefs are cooking now and where are they located?

We are working with 60+ cooks all across New York City, from the Bronx to Rockaway.

5. What can end users do with your app? How exactly does it work?

End users can utilize the Homemade mobile app to discover unique food, made by local cooks, and purchase individual servings. They get to meet people in their neighborhood and pickup amazing food.

6. What are your key KPIs and how did you choose them?

Weekly Revenue, because its a barometer for success, and doesn’t skew when low cost items (like snacks/baked goods) are purchased in large numbers. Weekly Downloads, because it shows how effective we are with marketing, creating community, and network effects.

7. What is your long-term vision for the company?

Creating community through food and establish a proving ground for cooks. We want to use food as a catalyst for creating local connections and community. Additionally, there is a big break between learning to cook and launching a restaurant/food business.

We want to lower the threshold to building a brand/following for proficient cooks. Long term these goals could translate to helping cooks open brick and mortar, using our buying power to cost-effectively source local/organic ingredients, and creating community hubs to feature local cooking talent.

8. What is your advice to other founders?

Always keep fighting, and help other people when possible. There are an extraordinary amount of ups and down when trying to launch a business, a lot of which is out of an entrepreneur’s control. We battled to get to the starting line as founders in some sense. We had a big vision, and no idea how to develop, design, or launch it two and a half years ago.

We made every mistake imaginable. There were a lot of dark moments between the start and here. There is a huge intrinsic value to helping other people, but also you never know how people will be useful to you in return. A lot of the biggest breaks we’ve had as founders came from the most unimaginable places and I attribute it to helping others.

But most importantly, if you work hard and are helpful to people along the way, you won’t have any regrets to haunt you when stuff is not going according to plan.



Reprinted by permission.

About the author: Alex Iskold

Alex Iskold is the Managing Director of Techstars in New York City.

Previously Alex was Founder/CEO of GetGlue (acquired by i.tv),  founder/CEO of Information Laboratory (acquired by IBM), and Chief Architect DataSynapse (acquired by TIBCO).

Alex routinely writes about entrepreneurship and startups at Alex Iskold.

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