Podcast Transcript – Series TWO, Episode 40
Patrice Darby Neely, gologic solutions August 2021
[00:00:00] I grew up in a household where both of my parents were entrepreneurs.
[00:00:09] I called my parents up and I said, mama, daddy, I don’t want to go into corporate America.
[00:00:13] We had a waiting list. So 5,000 families, and then it grew to 10,000.
[00:00:19] And so I got into a room with three data analysts, and we spent a week together breaking down the day.
[00:00:27] Well, I experienced that day. I will never forget for my entire lifetime.
[00:00:32] Sales, every single month to $0 coming in for over a hundred days,
[00:00:37] I had to make the decision to wake up every single morning and figure it out.
[00:00:44] The two things that kept me stable was my faith. The calling that I have as an entrepreneur.
[00:00:52] The number one thing that I would tell her, Patrice is not what you now, but it’s everything you don’t know. [00:01:00]
[00:01:00] What’s up Unfound Nation, Dan Kihanya here. Thanks so much for checking out another episode of Founders Unfound.
[00:01:06] That was Patrice Darby, Neely, founder, and CEO of GoLogic Solutions, a platform using smart connectivity to resources and data aggregation to help small businesses accelerate growth and reduce failure.
[00:01:18] Patrice spent many years in childcare before starting her first. GoNanny to address the fragmentation of care occurring with the busy schedules and families on the go. Timing wasn’t on her side, unfortunately, as our company fell victim to the whipsaw of the U S economy that came with COVID-19. With GoNanny Patrice had a front row seat during the height of the pandemic and she saw how vulnerable small businesses are and how inefficient the ecosystem can be and connecting them with timely and impactful resources.
[00:01:47] And so GoLogic was born. Patrice is at alum of 1871 in Chicago and has been funded by the likes of pipeline, angels and Google for Startups, Black Founder Fund. She has a great story. You’ll want [00:02:00] to listen.
[00:02:01] Our episode is sponsored by The Plug. Sherrell Dorsey and her team are cranking out some of the most unique, insightful data and stories about black professionals and the black founder ecosystem. They have the stuff you won’t find anywhere else, including industry briefs and member access sessions with leading innovators to sign up, look for a link in the show notes.
[00:02:20] Before we continue, please make sure to like, and subscribe to the podcast we are available anywhere. You get your podcasts, even YouTube.
[00:02:27] And if you like what you hear, drop us a review on Apple or podchaser.com. Every review really, really helps.
[00:02:33] Now on with the episode, stay safe and hope you enjoy.
[00:02:37] Hello. Hello and welcome to Founders Unfound, spotlighting, the best startups you don’t know yet. We’re bringing you stories of exceptional founders from underrepresented and underestimated backgrounds. This is the latest episode in our continuing series on [00:03:00] founders of African descent.
[00:03:01] I’m your host, Dan Kihanya. Let’s get on it.
[00:03:04] Today we have Patrice Darby Neeley, founder, and CEO of GoLogic, a data aggregation and economic development platform, helping small businesses, accelerate growth, and reduce failure while increasing the capacity and capabilities of the organizations that support them. Welcome to the show. Patrice, we’re super excited to have you on. Thanks for making the time
[00:03:22] I am as well. Thanks for having me.
[00:03:25] Why don’t we start off with help the listeners. Understand what is GoLogic exactly?
[00:03:29] Absolutely GoLogic is an economic development platform. It’s actually the first of its kind unified platform, meaning that there are small business owners that are running their businesses every day. And then they have a support organization. Maybe it’s. Small business development center or a women’s business center. And they’re going to these entities for support our platform comes in at the point where they are able to actually [00:04:00] make progress on understanding how their business is performing day to day.
[00:04:06] And have their advisor from that business support organization, support them, helping them understand their data. We use machine learning, artificial intelligence, big data to help small businesses become sustainable and grow into enterprise business. Awesome.
[00:04:27] And I love businesses like this, which take entities two separate spheres of groups, of organizations that are supposed to work well together. And they usually do, but there’s all these inefficiencies and places where things fall through the cracks. And so I love that you’re coming into try and help solve that. So that’s great. But before we talk more about goal logic, let’s step back and talk a little bit about who Patrice is. And let’s hear a little bit about like who you are, where you’re from, where you grew up.
[00:04:55] So I am a second generation entrepreneur. I grew up in [00:05:00] a household where both of my parents were entrepreneurs. And so at a very early age, I remember going through business school with my parents. I was only seven at the time. And I remember being in their business class and learning what a business plan was and writing my first business plan. So I was literally immersed into this lifestyle. Uh, building companies solving massive problems and helping communities.
[00:05:31] I love that seven years old. There’s gotta be some Guinness world record there of the youngest person to write a business plan.
[00:05:39] Oh man. Bring it on.
[00:05:42] Just saying, you know, we talked to founders and sometimes they fall into entrepreneurship through whatever the pathway is and sometimes it’s kind of meant to be. So I’m really interested, like, as you started to appreciate. What it was that your parents were doing and also for you that the world could have [00:06:00] other things to offer. How did you think about like his entrepreneurship? Like, did you feel like a predestiny toward it?
[00:06:06] Absolutely. It definitely was a predestiny. I remember when I was a kid, I remember waking up at four in the morning because my parents had to go open their companies. I remember working at my mom’s childcare centers late into the night cleaning and restructuring the classrooms so that they can. Prepared for September 1st. I remember getting loads of equipment to restructure the classrooms and being there overnight and well into the next morning.
[00:06:39] I think the entrepreneurship lifestyle that my parents live gave me the ability later in life to actually take. And launch my own companies and be able to work for 22 hours if necessary to get to the next level. But I will say that on the flip [00:07:00] side, I remember growing up and saying, I had this exact statement of frustration one day just pissed off because I couldn’t go to a party, but my mom was like, no, like you need to come home because of the business X, Y, Z.
[00:07:17] And I remember being frustrated and saying, when I grow up, I never want to do what my parents do. I never want to be what my parents are. And then I graduated with my bachelor’s degree. And I remember it like yesterday, I called my parents up and I said, momma, daddy, I don’t want to go into corporate America.
[00:07:36] I want to launch a technology company and I want to innovate the childcare sector. And they stood beside me. I didn’t see that point of view growing up though. I was always like, I have to give my parents away to customers. To investors, to the board of directors. I [00:08:00] was constantly sacrificing my parents because of their mission and because of their calling. So growing up, it was a challenge, but looking back, I am so grateful and I do believe that I was predestined for.
[00:08:14] Wow. That’s a great story. And I never heard it worded that way as entrepreneurs, we do sacrifice a lot, like you said, Tensley can go and work for companies, make a lot of money. You can, you can have maybe a slightly easier lifestyle and you give a lot up, but you also affect the people around you. Have you ever told your parents that you felt that way?
[00:08:35] Funny thing is probably not,
[00:08:38] well, hopefully they’ll hear this podcast, but, and as an entrepreneur yourself, you can take that into your own mind, as you think about your loved ones and the people around you and those you care about and how they’re part of the journey.
[00:08:53] And there are trade offs. That’s fascinating when you came out of college, like sometimes parents are like, you know, I [00:09:00] want you to be the doctor or the lawyer. The thing that education sort of gives you where you can have a nine to five job that makes a lot of money. Did they have that expectation of you?
[00:09:09] Listen. I am grateful that my parents have always been laid back when it came to our careers and our decisions in terms of where we go and the next house we take, they’ve always allowed us the freedom to decide. I’ve never felt pressured to go one direction or another. I remember my dad told me this when I was young, he said, whatever you decide to do.
[00:09:34] Just make sure that your athletics and your morals that we instilled within you stays intact. So I think that was their core focus is that we don’t lose who we are along the way. And so I think for us, it was more of our moral conscience. And our focus and our drive more so than what industry we decided to go into.
[00:09:56] Wow. That’s great. What a blessing to have a such [00:10:00] laid back is definitely one way to put it, but supportive in another way, right. To, to be focused on what’s the important stuff right around your moral compass. That’s that’s so cool. So you mentioned you had this epiphany about wanting to kind of redefine the nanny care space. What led to that?
[00:10:18] It goes way back. So my parents, the first companies they ever aligned for childcare. And so I was always put into the environment of education and childcare. Like my dad was also a public school teacher. So education has always been a part of our foundation. When I moved to Chicago to go to college, I started getting nanny job.
[00:10:40] So I went from the classroom experience to the home experience. And I noticed very quickly that I was different because of the foundation that my parents built and instilled within me. I walked into these home environments and I was able to bring the tools that I gathered in a classroom [00:11:00] environment to the home.
[00:11:01] I was able to bring early childhood education techniques. To the household group dynamics, you know, structuring the home and bringing organization and serenity to the household. It was a part of something that is more than a technique. It was a part of how I facilitated work, how I thought about child rearing, how I understood the.
[00:11:28] And oftentimes I worked in really prestigious homes where I was able to bring something that the parents didn’t have. And so most of my lights in Chicago, most of my career during my college day. We’re centered around childcare within the household. And so innovating childcare for me was taking my mom’s legacy to the next level where she launched companies [00:12:00] into a traditional structure.
[00:12:02] And I saw the opportunity to innovate the entire structure, what technology, and also have an innovative business model in order to really expand what childcare looks like and what it really means.
[00:12:20] Nice. And what was the key insight do you think he had, I mean, obviously you had all this exposure growing up to the ecosystem and the industry, and then you lived it as a, as a nanny. What was the thing that you said like, Hmm, this needs to be fixed in this and I’m going to go build that.
[00:12:38] I’ll give my top three, because there were many, but one, I noticed that in the childcare industry, technology is arduous, intimidating, stressful, and difficult to train people. So for me, I knew that in order for [00:13:00] childcare to progress, it needed to be merged with technology.
[00:13:04] And in order for childcare to be able to provide solutions that parents need in this day and age, and needed to be merged with innovation. And so that was the biggest thing. That was the number one issue. And then the second piece of it was busy parent. Have to choose between their career and their kids activity.
[00:13:27] So a lot of times getting your child to school, it’s going to happen and it hasn’t happened. But allowing that child to expand their social life, build skills as an athlete or a dancer, or, you know, a wrestler, whatever after school or before school activities like chess, gymnastics, oftentimes parents have to say.
[00:13:55] I experienced this in my own life, growing up and our household, there are six of [00:14:00] us. There’s four kids, all girls. And then my mom and dad and my mom and dad, whenever a staff member didn’t show up to work or called off or came in late, they had to pick up. I heard no. So many times growing up when it came to extracurricular activities and social events and to finish college and still see that the childcare industry hasn’t progressed over the last 20 years, that really led me to take action and to build something that could be a solution.
[00:14:36] And so that became GoNanny and, and we could do a whole separate episode on GoNanny, but maybe just tell us a couple of minutes. What was, what was the storyline with GoNanny? You started this company several years ago now at this point, and what happened?
[00:14:50] Real quick, because I could go for days on this topic, but started going nanny launched it, bootstrapped most of it. And we quickly took [00:15:00] off. I mean, in the first year we had a waiting list of like 5,000 families and then it grew to 10,000 families and, and we quickly expanded throughout Chicago into the suburbs and all of, you know, the Southern suburbs of Illinois. We just started expanding so quickly, but then we hit a brick wall.
[00:15:22] We were trying to onboard as many families as possible, as quickly as possible to meet the demand and the model kept breaking down.
[00:15:31] The economic model or the financial model?
[00:15:34] Our business model. So the logistics model, how GoNanny operated as entire business and the problems that it solved. So GoNanny was a care and ride service and parents could book a trustworthy, dependable nanny and short increments.
[00:15:52] The traditional nanny model requires you to book at least four hours of care. Even if you don’t need. You [00:16:00] got above that amount of time. So that that person, that serving you makes enough money for their household. So we innovated that model by merging it with the ride share model where a lot of families, they may not need a full-time person, but they need someone in short increments to get their kids safely from point a to point B.
[00:16:21] In addition to that, they may need someone to do care for 30. Jasmine to the mom gets home for work. Let’s say that kid’s getting picked up from soccer. They’re getting dropped off at home. They arrive home at five 30, but mine won’t be home until six. So then nanny can stay for 30 minutes. And then we had an entire logistics structure to it where parents were able to get a GoNanny crew.
[00:16:45] So the crew consisted of three consistent, trustworthy, and dependable professional nannies that were able to be booked out and share with multiple people.
[00:16:56] Nice. Well, we’re going to take a short break and we’ll be right [00:17:00] back with Patrice therapy Neely from GoLogic.
[00:17:04] Who gets to be called innovative or genius.
[00:17:07] If we look at the current media landscape today, we often don’t see people of color dominating the business or tech news headlines. I’m Sherrell Dorsey, data journalist and founder of The Plug. Our work in reporting has been featured in and used by top names like Vice, The Information, and casting directors at ABC Shark Tank.
[00:17:23] The Plug cuts out the noise to bring you news insights and analysis of trends, shaping venture capital startups, policy and ecosystems within black innovation communities. Join our annual pro membership and get exclusive access to our weekly long form reporting and monthly member calls, which puts you directly at the table with leading innovators and firms around the country.
[00:17:41] Also access our data libraries of indexes, such as our black owned VC firms index or the top 100 black researchers in artificial intelligence and machine learning. Use code unfound to save $10 on our annual subscription at tpinsights.com that’s T as in the and P, as in Plug insights.com.[00:18:00]
[00:18:03] So we’re back with Patrice. So Patrice, why don’t we talk a little bit about how GoNanny ended up and kind of, I know it’s part of the origin story of GoLogic and COVID is in there. So tell us about what occurred over the last couple of years.
[00:18:17] Absolutely. So before the break, I was sharing that the model broke down and the model wasn’t working. So I was hitting my head against the wall and I decided to take a step. And this was me realizing that there’s some fundamental issues with this model that isn’t going to work, but I don’t know what, and I also don’t know how to get to the next level. Right? How do we get 10,000 families off the wait list onto the platform?
[00:18:48] So I spent a week, an entire week. I took out time to really take a step back and understand my day. Over the course of these two years, the [00:19:00] first two years of business, we were collecting data all along the way, but we were not utilizing. And I knew that in order for me to really see where the breakdown and where the breakthrough was, I needed to scale back and actually look at the data.
[00:19:18] And so I got into a room with three data analysts and we spent a week together and we got it breaking down the data to really understand why the model was failing and also the path to. And by the end of that week, I understood my data and I understood the business performance more than ever before, by the end of the week, I not only understood why, where, and how the model was breaking down, but I had an entire game plan to get to.
[00:19:56] And I walked away from that meeting, taking action. [00:20:00]
[00:20:00] That’s an amazing story. Because a lot of entrepreneurs get caught up in sort of the, you know, you’re on the habit trail, right? Like, yeah, we’re just go, go, go. Oh, something’s not working. We’ll just, just keep, let’s just keep going and keep going. So it takes a lot.
[00:20:12] Intentionality to step back and say, okay, wait a minute. I know there’s a market need out there. I know there’s a way to do this. The way we’re doing just doesn’t seem sustainable. So that’s pretty impressive to kind of just take a step back and, and to, to focus like that. Cause it’s hard when you have all the pressure, like, especially you got 10,000 people waiting in line.
[00:20:31] It’s stressful and you got investors saying, why aren’t you onboarding them?
[00:20:35] Yeah. So what did you come up? Yeah. So walk away from that. And I had a new model instead of sourcing vatting hiring workers to pair them with families. One by one, the data showed us that we were hiring workers that were working at the same [00:21:00] location where families needed pickups. So we were a supplemental income solution for our workers.
[00:21:10] They were working two other jobs, another job in addition to working on our plans. So they would be working at a swim school from 9:00 AM until 2:00 PM. And then they would leave that swim school as a swim instructor and then jump on the GoNanny platform and do care rides and care from 2:00 PM until eight year literally.
[00:21:34] And the data shows oh, does that there were seven other families at that same swim school that needed care that needed care. Right. Another data point showed us that there were logistical barriers that were affecting the model. So there are people that need care all the way on the north side of Chicago, but the person that fits well [00:22:00] with that family, right?
[00:22:01] Because there’s a family dynamic to it. There’s a matching I’m hearing was all the way on the south side of Chicago. That’s 45 minutes just to get to work. So there’s a logistical barriers. And then if that kid isn’t picked up at three o’clock on the doc, parents get fine, $50, a hundred dollars. Those are just two examples of what that model showed us.
[00:22:23] The new model that we emerged with from analyzing our data, understanding our data was to actually pivot to a B2B model and sell our SAS platform software as a service to these businesses. So now the swim school can do this and solve a pain point for their families. The gymnastic school can do it. The elementary school can do it.
[00:22:49] All of these businesses can do what we do and solve a problem for their families, as well as their employees. Because of that’s, women’s strapped, [00:23:00] there needs supplemental income and that’s when school is able to give it to them, then that’s gonna increase the retention of that employee.
[00:23:09] Makes total sense to me. And I feel like I’m in the story and we’re in like the fourth act. And that it’s a really positive, like the happy ending is coming, but something must’ve happened. So take us to what happened with GoNanny?
[00:23:22] Right after we pivoted to that new mom. We quickly closed two large contracts, two big deals, multimillion dollar deals to organizations here in Illinois. And we were well on our way to the extent that that was market validation. We got into Techstars, the number one accelerator program in the nation, right. It’s easier to get into Princeton and Harvard than it is to get into tech star. We got in and started our Techstars crash course. It was like an MBA program on steroids.
[00:23:56] And in the midst of Techstars, we raised a million hours [00:24:00] and then COVID hit, we were set to pose our million dollar round on March 23rd, 2020. And COVID closed down the entire state of Illinois. On March 19th. So March 19th, I got sent home from my office and on my way home, I’m getting email after email phone call, after phone call from our employees, from our clients, our customers, and from ambassadors.
[00:24:29] And we lost everything literally overnight, a million dollars evaporated because it was too risky for investors. Or they needed to allocate funding to their portfolio companies that were on fire. We didn’t even know what COVID was at the time. So how would COVID COVID recover? How will Illinois recover?
[00:24:50] How will GoNanny recover from our state, closed down all the childcare centers, all the activities and programs, all the schools. And so we lost all of our [00:25:00] customers and we were onboarding 500. Businesses. Wow. Well, I experienced that day. I will never forget for my entire lifetime.
[00:25:10] Yeah, I can only imagine, cause you start the day thinking not that it can be any other day, but like, you know, it’s, we’ve got stuff to do. We’ve got things to happen probably. And oh yeah, this is COVID thing, but who knows what that is? And hopefully that’ll be, you know, whatever. And cause I remember thinking that. And by the end of the day, it’s like you’re in a alternate reality.
[00:25:31] It’s a whirlwind. I never thought that I would build something for five years and then see it literally the center it great over night.
[00:25:40] Our bank account went from hundreds of thousands of dollars in it, right? Sales every single month to $0 coming in for over a hundred days, $0 for over a hundred days.
[00:25:54] That’s just sounds devastating. I mean, this is, you definitely have one of the most profound [00:26:00] stories from COVID that we’ve had on the show. And I think people think about these things in the abstract now. It’s amazing how short-term memory we have. Right. And unfortunately, it’s one of many stories, right? Like you said, some businesses, it was a boom, right? Making video chat or whatever, are you building Peloton or whatever it was right then here business took off.
[00:26:23] But if you did anything around somebody going from where they live to somewhere else, then it was trouble. It was tough. How does GoLogic emerge? So I’m sure again, we could have a long discussion about the emotional and mental gymnastics you had to go through to kind of emerge from that even at all. But how does GoLogic emerge from that?
[00:26:45] So then it’s interesting because what I see now that happened back then it’s even insightful for me. I never knew that the problem that Patrice had when she was building her [00:27:00] company and grow 10 X within eight months. Was the same problem that every single small business owner has and some shape or form.
[00:27:14] Ah-ah, now we connect it all. There it is.
[00:27:17] That’s where GoLogic comes in. I am not almighty, all knowing, all powerful by any means, but I will tell you this story is like a never ending thread. And it’s crazy because what I experienced personally, in my first company, now I’m helping small business owners. Not fail, become sustainable and grow 10 acts and grow 15 acts and really leave a legacy rather it’s for their family or for their neighborhood or for the world.
[00:27:54] You definitely have the entrepreneurial lens. Your whole story is around. You’re in an [00:28:00] environment, you see opportunity, you see a place that needs something to be addressed or a problem fixed, and you’re like, Hmm, I need to fix that. So I think there’s definitely a, and I would use the word lens, right? I th I think it, there’s a lens that you have with the world where you sort of look at things as opportunities and what’s missing here.
[00:28:18] I mean, it’s tough. I mean, I’ve been fortunate enough to go through lots of startup experiences and I’ve had a couple that didn’t work out. How do you GERD yourself up? I mean, obviously you saw the opportunity to do GoLogic. How do you get back on the horse? You just got knocked down. How could you have planned for COVID?
[00:28:35] Right. I mean, there’s nothing you could have done as an entrepreneur. Sometimes you can go back and second guess like, oh, if we had done this and we’ve done that,
[00:28:41] Nope, there’s nothing I could have done.
[00:28:44] So how do you get the passion and reset to go and do another startup?
[00:28:49] I think the first thing was, is like Patricia got to put on your big girl panties and pick yourself up.
[00:28:55] We’ve got employees that are wondering, what’s going to happen. You got [00:29:00] people that are depending on you, you’re the CEO let’s go. You know? So I kind of had to have a pep talk with myself. I’m not saying it’s easy. It wasn’t easy. But I had to make the decision to wake up every single week morning and figure it out.
[00:29:17] And that was it. The first thing. So it was like, okay, I’m making the decision to wake up in the morning and figure this out. Even though I don’t even want to get up, like depression is a real heavy weight. And when you lose everything and you don’t know how your bills are going to be paid, and then you purchase insurance and all of these expensive things that you can’t call and.
[00:29:37] It was a lot, but the two things that kept me stable was my faith. And it was the belief and the calling that I have as an entrepreneur, when you know what your purpose is, and you know what you’ve been called to do. There is nothing that can shake that. And so I still don’t those two things. I still don’t like that.
[00:29:59] And I still don’t my [00:30:00] calling then of course, I had to do a pep talk every single day for about a hundred days. And then I got to this place where it was. Patrice, this is just another bump in the road and you’re pushing through and you’re leading the team. Like if they see me fail, they see me frustrated.
[00:30:16] They see me not giving a hack about anything and just throwing in the towel, then they’ll follow suit. But what they saw was a person that came and was vulnerable. I came to the table with everything laid out, saying, this is how much money is in a bank. We cannot burn more than this amount monthly, because we don’t know how long COVID is going to last.
[00:30:40] And we don’t know how long it’s going to take us to get to the next pivot. So I came with that first, from there, we started using data to pivot, and so I wasn’t making decisions. All Willy nilly. I was making strategic moves. Based on data. So I think that was my foundation for [00:31:00] getting through to the next win.
[00:31:02] Wow. And I think that’s really interesting. You talk about the calling because you know, if you look at people who do kind of entrepreneurship, as I, I’m not even gonna to say it’s a lifestyle, but as like you said, like a calling. Everything is a chapter. Everything is a season, right. And some of those seasons are growth seasons where it’s like, you get punched in the gut.
[00:31:23] And some of them are like, you’re flying on just light, airy wings and you’re soaring. So it’s really interesting that you have sort of that confidence and courage around, like, this is what I’m supposed to do and yeah, there’s going to be setbacks. So tremendously inspiring for sure. We’re going to take another short break and we’ll be right back with Patrice Darby Neeley from GoLogic.
[00:31:44] Who gets to be called innovative or genius.
[00:31:46] If we got the current media landscape today, we often don’t see people of color dominating the business or tech news headlines. I’m Sherrell Dorsey, data journalist and founder of The Plug. Our work and reporting has been featured in and used by top names like Vice, The [00:32:00] Information, and casting directors at ABC Shark Tank.
[00:32:02] The Plug cuts out the noise to bring you news insights and analysis of trends, shaping venture capital startups, policy and ecosystems within black innovation communities. Join our annual pro membership and get exclusive access to our weekly long form reporting and monthly member calls, which puts you directly at the table with leading innovators and firms around the country.
[00:32:21] Also access our data libraries of indexes, such as our black-owned VC firms index, where the top 100 black researchers in artificial intelligence and machine learning. Use code unfound to save $10 on our annual subscription at tpinsights.com that’s T as in The P as in Plug insights.com.
[00:32:43] So we’re back with Patrice from GoLogic. Let’s switch gears a little bit. Let’s let’s talk about like, how does GoLogic work? Obviously you have two sides. You’ve got the support organizations. You’ve got the, the businesses. How does it come together? How does, how does it work exactly?
[00:32:56] It’s one unified platform where we’ve [00:33:00] taken three separate platforms for three different users and integrated and so on. You have the small business owners making progress, and then the support organizations coming alongside them to make progress together. We equip the business support organizations with the platform, and then they give it to their small businesses. And so it’s a, it’s an enterprise solution and it’s fast software as a service, as well as, I mean, if you want to really be technical about it, it’s actually data software as a service.
[00:33:35] And so with that, what we’ve done is we’ve taken machine learning, AI and big data. And these are capabilities that Fortune 1000 companies have, right? But the small man, the business owner, that’s building the economy in their neighborhood and their community. They don’t have these capabilities. So they’re automatically at a disadvantage.
[00:33:56] What our platform does is it creates a [00:34:00] possibility for them to have the same, the same functions. Uh, Fortune 1000 company, right? Think about Amazon or the Uber Eats of the world, or, you know, the Grubhubs of the world, all of these companies are utilizing data. But then when you look about the small business owner, because of the educational barriers to data systems and structures and all of that, they’re at a disadvantage because of how costly it is to stand up one of these systems.
[00:34:30] They’re at a disadvantage. And so what GoLogic does is it spreads out the cost throughout the entire ecosystem, making it assessable for a small business owner to perform at the same level as a Fortune 500 company, when it comes to machine learning data, AI.
[00:34:50] What’s an example of like how a company would benefit from that.
[00:34:53] Because I think obviously folks like us can understand the impact those things have in business [00:35:00] at a broad level, but like the small business owner, they don’t always get it.
[00:35:04] Let’s break it down. Let’s talk about a restaurant. Let’s say a restaurant has 40 items on there. And every day sales are happening, things are selling and they’re, they’re operating that business owner because they don’t have the data infrastructure necessary to really understand the performance of their business.
[00:35:23] They’re making a lot of assumptions. And so, for example, They put 40 items on our menu because they came out with a great man, you gotta take things sounds right. But as your business operates over time, the data will tell you if you need to keep that on the menu or you need to remove that. But oftentimes.
[00:35:43] Small business owner. They have too much on their plate to even think about making changes or adjustments or pivoting making decisions. And so using data as a part of the decision-making process, you’re able to say, Hey, [00:36:00] there’s 40 items. What are your menu? But the data shows that only five items are selling.
[00:36:05] And this is a true story. So I’m sharing with you guys the truth. Only five items are Sally. You’re buying ingredients for 40 items. You’re buying the packaging for 40 items. You’re spending money, but you’re not seeing the return. And instead of doing that, do this, reduce your menu to five. Packaged them as family meal kits, because the data shows that families are your target market.
[00:36:33] Those are the people that’s buying. So package it in a way that they buy it and meet their needs. This is a true story. This restaurant’s revenue grew by 20% month over month for three consecutive months because they got on a GoLogic platform, activated their business. And took action on the [00:37:00] prescriptive data insights.
[00:37:03] That’s a wonderful example. And I’ve always appreciated folks that are able to help small businesses, especially restaurants. I remember I was in the coupon business at one point and we tried to sell to small businesses. And, you know, if you have a small business like a restaurant, you know, your day is made up of.
[00:37:19] The fish wasn’t delivered on time. It snowed last night, somebody has to plow the parking lot, or Jimmy didn’t show up to bus tables or this customer’s complaining about this or whatever. I mean, your life is just organized chaos for like 18 hours a day. And you don’t have the time. You literally don’t have the time, energy or capacity to do the things you’re talking about.
[00:37:40] So if you make it just basically so simple and delivered in the context of a trusted organization, like the support organization, It’s really brilliant. I think it’s amazing. And again, it’s this, you know, this common thread, like very similar to what you were trying to do with GoNanny. It’s like these entities, they want to work together.
[00:37:57] They seem to establish relationships, but [00:38:00] like, how do we make that really optimized and efficient and maximize the potential? It’s really great. Tell me, what’s your, let’s say this one hits it out of the park, right? And there’s no COVID then you’re in the future and you’re going to your parents and you’re having Thanksgiving dinner.
[00:38:15] GoLogic has made it. It is a success. What’s going to define that for you. What would that mean for you for GoLogic to be a success? What’s the big vision for it?
[00:38:24] GoLogic will be a success. When our platform is able to shift the power that Fortune 500 companies and Fortune 1000 companies have to small business. There is currently the U S economy over 56% of the U S economy is generated by Fortune 1000 and Fortune 500 companies over 56% of the jobs. 56% of the wealth. 56% of the entire us economy is generated [00:39:00] by the 1% that’s mind boggling. So our biggest success will be looking at the U S economy 10 years from now and seeing jobs well and the economy as a whole be boosted and generated by small businesses instead of the one percent.
[00:39:22] I love it. And you know, it’s really interesting because the bigger businesses ended up being the beneficiaries of the hard work that the small businesses do in terms of establishing markets and product testing and customer development. And then somebody. Oh, this isn’t a very great idea. Let’s open a franchise and open 50 stores like this. And so I love it. Well, let’s switch gears a little bit and talk about fundraising. Like, what’s your, what’s your overall thoughts around the fundraising experience? You’ve gone through I guess a couple of times with the previous company. Maybe you’re thinking about it with this current one, but in general, like what’s your philosophy about [00:40:00] fundraising? Do you believe in it? Do you think it’s necessary? And how has it been so far?
[00:40:04] Dan I can unpack this and like, it will take me weeks to unpack all of that because I’ve had my fair share of fundraising experiences. I’ll start with this. I believe there’s a purpose for fundraising. And I do believe if it’s executed in the right timing, it’s beneficial.
[00:40:23] Oftentimes people fundraise when they don’t need to, or when they have not exhausted other options. Once you start fundraising and you take outside capital that has strings attached to it. It doesn’t matter what the strings are. It requires you to do a lot more work because now you have new stakeholders that are external instead of.
[00:40:54] So I think there’s a time for it and it is necessary [00:41:00] if executed within the right time. But I also believe that I encourage people not to take funny if they don’t have to, or to make sure when they do it’s at the right time and they have a strategy. The reason why is that? I’ve had my fair share of experiences.
[00:41:19] I remember the first time that I got my first investment. And at that time I was really new to the tech world and new to investing and new to all of that. And so I really didn’t dive into it from an educational standpoint until later on. And I wish I had, because I would have done things differently.
[00:41:39] That’s my philosophy to give us short, concise, cohesive statement. Don’t raise capital unless it’s necessary. And you have a strategy in place?
[00:41:52] That makes sense. Hey you, right. A lot of entrepreneurs kind of like, you know, it’s a marathon, right. To a startup and they, and they get to like a [00:42:00] quarter mile in and they’re like, okay, where’s my drink? I’m ready for a food snack. It’s like, no, no, no, not yet.
[00:42:06] And I will say also, Dan, I want to add to it is that when I first started out in the tech world, I was trying to raise a million dollars when I first started because of the technology company that I was building, it required a lot. Uh, money. We took a lot of arrests with transporting kids, right?
[00:42:25] That’s expensive. It is the most expensive cargo you can ever transport. We put people on houses, right. And homes, and very intimate. Right. That’s a huge risk. So you’ve got a minor, you got an intimate environment. That’s a whole lot of insurance and thankfully we were so successful with it. So proud of that.
[00:42:47] But with that being said, when I first started out, I went the traditional route. And I asked bank of America and chase to give me a loan to launch this. And the traditional route didn’t work. They said, no, I didn’t have any assets. I was [00:43:00] straight out of college. You know, they didn’t have credit at the time.
[00:43:03] And so I went to investors and I spent eight months pitching to investors, trying to get them on board with this. And I got no after no after. No, you’re too early. No. Back to us when you made some progress. No, it’s too risky. We want to see the next level of it. And it’s like, which came first, the chicken or the egg.
[00:43:23] You want to see progress and I need to make progress and your money allows me to make progress. Right. So that was challenging. But then I started pitching, I started pitching for free money. I started applying to competitions and challenges and grants, and just started applying, applying. and I started winning.
[00:43:43] And today, It’s an item on my income statement. Winning free money. Everyone in our company knows Patrice wins free money because income statement is a part of our strategy every year. And so far, I’ve generated $900,000 [00:44:00] by doing this.
[00:44:01] Talk about expensive insurance. They’re going to have expensive insurance for like you like Patrice. you can’t, can’t go for a hike in the woods, like wear your seatbelts. We need for Patrice. She’s a key asset.
[00:44:12] So at the end of the day, I believe that there are ways to generate funding for your business. Now it took seven years of trial and error to get to the point where now Winnie free money is on autopilot for our company.
[00:44:28] And it’s a part of our income statement. It’s a part of our revenue. Like literally we have revenue streams, right? You should always be diversifying your revenue. You should always be monetized. What you’re doing in your company and finding new ways to generate money. And this is one of the ways that we generate money.
[00:44:44] You went through Techstars. So you have some experience with kind of colleagues, contemporaries, cohorts. Do you feel as a, sort of, as an African-American woman, founder, your journey has been different from some of those folks, not just because of the businesses that you’re in and those kinds of things, but who you [00:45:00] are.
[00:45:00] Yes. I remember I was talking to another tech founder and she was like, oh, I got 200 K from my dad. And so I was able to start my company. I bet your dad gave you $200,000. She’s like, yeah. My dad gets to like hired three of her friends and like they’re all working together and I’m like, wow. I stood on the street corner of Michigan avenue and downtown Chicago pitching to parents as they walk by. And that’s how I became post revenue, Very different.
[00:45:35] If I had to make up like a Simpsons version of the contrast, I couldn’t write a better story than what you just told me. My goodness. So let’s, let’s do this. I mean, uh, this has been an awesome conversation I could go on with you forever, but what we like to end with is the quintessential question of going back in time.
[00:45:55] So let’s, let’s actually go back before, GoNanny, I guess. So let’s go to [00:46:00] the pre-GoNanny, Patrice. This Patrice with all her wisdom and experience and the Sage advice, what would you tell that Patrice to do? Not to do what to look out for, what to run towards? What would you tell?
[00:46:14] The number one thing that I would tell her is Patrice is not what you know, but it’s everything you’ve done.
[00:46:22] Profound. And you know, that self-awareness is so hard as an entrepreneur sometimes, right? Because you’re betting on something that you think you figure it out, that others haven’t by definition because they’re not doing it. So it’s hard to step back and say, what am I not asking? What am I not saying? What am I not seeing?
[00:46:39] That’s where the gold is though. Right? That’s where the rubies are. That’s where the diamond is.
[00:46:45] That’s right. That’s how we figure out. I mean, so many businesses, they come from those moments of introspection or questioning or what if we went right instead of left and nobody told us that there was a way to go right [00:47:00] there instead of left, but maybe we should look at that.
[00:47:02] And what don’t we know about what’s over there. So great point, great point. Well, we always like to leave a call to action for our wonderful audience and unfound nation. What can we do to be helpful for you or for GoLogic.
[00:47:14] Well, the first thing is I have in teaching how to pitch and win money. And so I launched pitch to win, which is an online course. It’s just six weeks, but it helps entrepreneurs learn how to pitch a fact of and learn how to apply to any competition, any challenge for any grant to get funding, right? There’s seven ways that they can be generating money revenue by winning. So that it’s something your business does every year. It’s an item on your income statement.
[00:47:50] It’s an additional revenue stream for you. And it’s also money with no strings attached pitch to win.
[00:47:56] I love it. And once, is there a URL for that? Or
[00:47:59] so it’s [00:48:00] www.gologicsolutions.com/pitch2win.
[00:48:05] If people want to find out more about you, obviously they can go to that, that place. Is there any place else, any other social media or LinkedIn or anything you want to share?
[00:48:12] Yeah, jump on LinkedIn. You can search for Patrice Darby Neely. You can go to our Facebook page as well. The logic solutions Facebook page, you can go to our website, www.gologicsolutions.com.
[00:48:27] Well, this has been such an awesome conversation.
[00:48:30] Absolutely. Dan it’s been a privilege.
[00:48:33] We’d like to thank our guest, Patrice Darby Neeley, and our sponsor, The Plug.
[00:48:37] This podcast was produced by yours truly, Dan Kihanya.
[00:48:41] Audio editing and production by We Edit Podcasts.
[00:48:44] Don’t forget to subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts or simply go to foundersunfound.com/listento. That’s. Listen T-O.
[00:48:53] And please follow us on Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn @foundersunfound.
[00:48:58] Thanks so much for tuning in.[00:49:00]
[00:49:00] I am Dan Kihanya and you’ve been listening to Founders Unfound.