Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, food delivery companies have been criticized for the large fees they charge restaurants as more people stay home and opt for delivery options. But GoLogic Solutions, a Chicago startup building a delivery SaaS platform, wants to address restaurant owners’ complaints.
GoLogic, founded in 2016 by Patrice Darby, is the marker of GoLocal, a small business delivery app that works with everything from restaurants and grocery stores, to independent shoe and clothing retailers.
Currently, the largest industry utilizing GoLocal is the restaurant and dining sector because many are looking for alternatives to delivery apps like Grubhub and DoorDash, Darby said.
Using GoLocal, restaurants can set up and operate their own internal delivery service platform, giving them all the features they need to keep track of orders, accept payments and schedule on-demand delivery.
The key difference between GoLocal and other delivery apps, Darby says, is that GoLocal gives restaurants the ability to use their own employees as delivery people, meaning revenue made from a delivery goes back directly to the restaurant and its employees rather than contract workers employed by a delivery software maker.
“Uber Eats and Grubhub are literally killing small businesses,” Darby said. “They’re not helping them.”
GoLocal also doesn’t require small business owners to buy any hardware to use the service. They can access GoLocal directly from a cellphone. Services range from $199-$500 per month, Darby said.
On the consumer side, users have to place orders on the GoLocal app from restaurants and stores that already use the platform.
Darby said the startup is growing, with about 100 small businesses now using GoLogic services. But just earlier this year, the business was suffering.
Before the pandemic, GoLogic was known as GoNanny and made a SaaS platform that organized transportation for children using vetted nannies that parents could trust.
“We solved the pain point for parents, which is how do I get my child home safely,” Darby said.
Right before the Covid-19 pandemic hit the U.S. in March, the company was closing a $1 million funding round. But because schools and child care centers were closing, and children were largely remaining at home with their parents, the need for child transportation dropped considerably.
Due to that and other economic stress and uncertainty the virus caused, GoLogic’s financing round fell apart.
“OUR INVESTMENT ROUND DISAPPEARED OVERNIGHT.”
“Our investment round disappeared overnight,” Darby said. “I was sitting on my couch at home thinking ‘Holy crap. We were so close. How in the world does something like this happen?’ Everything that I was building for four years was gone.”
The fallout made Darby reexamine her business, which untimely led to a sharp pivot. She rebranded her company to GoLogic, kept GoNanny as a subsidiary and launched GoLocal, the small business delivery service.
“Literally everything that we were building could be a new innovative solution for the food service industry,” Darby said.
Aside from giving restaurants the technology to power delivery logistics, GoLocal also provides data that helps businesses improve their delivery performance, Darby said.
Earlier this year, GoLogic participated in Techstars Chicago’s accelerator program, which culminated in a virtual demo day in April. GoLogic, which employs 10 people, has raised about $300,000 total, $120,000 of which is from Techstars.
“When I got the call that we got accepted into [Techstars], it was one of the most awesome experiences I could have hoped for,” Darby said.