It Began with a Drink
While running our first startup, a Dining Tour in Whistler, we noticed a lot of people calling restaurants to send a bottle of wine to their friend's or client's table. So in 2013, Guusto was launched as a consumer app that allowed you to send a drink when you couldn’t be there in person. Pretty cool, right?
Entering the Den
We thought so, and took our pitch to Dragon’s Den back in 2015. The experience was not quite as intense as the dramatic final cut. We actually shared user testing data (e.g. 90% of customers would not send gifts if app download was mandated) that addressed the Dragons' main concerns.
First to Raise Equity Crowdfunding
It was around this same time that we started getting a few early adopter HR professionals using the app to send gifts to employees. They were absolutely loving it, so we figured we’d offer them the chance to own shares in Guusto. We went on to become the first company in Canada to close a round of equity crowdfunding. So instead of traditional Venture financing behind us, we have an army of brand champions who love using Guusto and sharing it with their networks.