Not any startup tour starts as sweetly as a highway co-founders Ishita Prasad and Maya Balakrishnan took to rising their new company, Polymer — though afterwards again, not any startup takes a impulse from a chocolate factory.
Spun out from a extravagantly successful (and extravagantly expensive) bean-to-bar San Francisco chocolate bureau Dandelion Chocolate, Polymer sensitively lifted $2 million early this year to marry Prasad’s passion for small-scale (chocolate) production with her past career as an operative during Alphabet.
The association was indeed innate from Dandelion’s possess needs, Prasad tells me.
“We started building it final October… and we started building it only for Dandelion,” she said. Polymer has a program that uses iPads and Android phones assimilated with exclusive program to guard correspondence and line potency in tiny factories.
Workers take cinema of a settings on their apparatus and guard what they’re putting into a apparatus or on a line. That gets uploaded into a centralized database to give employers a image of what’s going on with their apparatus and what’s function on a bureau floor. Traditionally that slip was finished manually with coop and paper, says Prasad.
The program also collects information directly from a bureau equipment, according to Prasad.
These kinds of insights were always accessible to large manufacturers, though smaller companies, like Dandelion have had to make do, Prasad said… until now.
“Our initial initial aim marketplace is with a smaller manufacturers who occupy adult to 500 people,” pronounced Prasad. “They have tracking systems and ERPs that are unequivocally expensive.”
Thanks to mandate from a Food and Drug Administration, any tiny food association needs to lane inputs and apparatus for tracebacks in a eventuality of a intensity recall. Factories wish to have a insights anyway, since if there’s a problem on a line, it’s improved to be means to brand it fast and take stairs to safeguard that some-more batches aren’t influenced by a poor product.
The problem was constrained adequate to remonstrate Prasad’s associate Stanford alumnus and good crony Balakrishnan to give adult a pursuit during Goldman Sachs in New York and come out to San Francisco to get Polymer off a ground.
In a U.S. alone, 85 percent of manufacturers validate as tiny businesses, contracting between 5 and 500 people. Prasad estimates that a sum is tighten to 200,000 tiny businesses in a U.S. that could be business for a company’s software.
Certainly, a tech-savvy co-founder of Dandelion,Todd Masonis, who formerly had started a veteran networking association Plaxo, was convinced. He assimilated Harrison Metal, who led a round, along with other big-time angel investors like Andrew Chen from Uber, Brian Balfour of Reforge, Daniel Lurie and Jonathan Bruck from Pocket; and Bubba Murarka, along with other undisclosed investors.
As for how a chocolate association spun out a polymer, Prasad told me a name was selected since “we wanted to build a apparatus to concede manufacturers to perspective a connectors between any partial of their factory. Like with polymers, we have combined a product where a whole is most some-more useful than a sum of a particular tools — regulating the apparatus allows manufacturers to benefit most larger insights into their operations than if they were looking during particular pieces of data.”