Two Internet Entrepreneurs and Their Yet-to-be-Named Online Resale Marketplace
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we could use a cell-phone camera and take pictures of everything that goes into storage, and just go boom-boom-boom, and then you’d have a picture inventory of everything that’s in there.'”
“But we didn’t want it to be inventory software,” Anton added. “We wanted it to be Web-based.” Following that came the idea for expanding the Web-based inventory to include social networking features, so friends and relatives could share pictures of items they wanted to show off, sell, or give away. And after that came the idea for listing items for sale by linking with multiple online marketplaces, and even with local chapters of Goodwill Industries and the Salvation Army.
“We have two small kids and my wife is constantly saying, ‘I’ve got this box of 3-to-6-months clothes that we need to give away,” Boyd said. “So essentially, we make it easy to take pictures of your stuff and to upload it to the website.”
The website includes features that make it possible to share the images with messages that include, “Borrow This Anytime,” “Make Me an Offer,” and “Take It, It’s Yours.” And with the economic downturn, Boyd added, “there’s been a boom in bartering and trading.”
Anton estimates there are about 11 million U.S. households storing stuff for 14 months a year or longer. He describes the website as a centralized platform to help users dispose of a range of personal belongings— from the lowest spectrum of value, which are items to give away, to the highest spectrum of value, which are the items to sell or the heirlooms that get passed onto a friend or relative.
Anton and Boyd told me they started developing their website more than a year ago. They self-funded the project mostly with proceeds from Document Tracking Services, a company they co-founded in 2005 that provides Web-based document management and software services for school districts throughout California and Maryland. They believe they now have reached the stage where they need outside funding, and told me they’ve begun to look for angel investors willing to provide between $250,000 and $500,000 in funding.