Joshua Ayres of CartDelivered will be speaking at this week’s 1 Million Cups at the Venture Center in downtown Little Rock. Ayres won the Pitch ‘N Pint contest last month which was hosted by The Venture Center at The Flying Saucer.
Ayres answered a few questions with Talk Business & Politics‘ Todd Jones prior to his presentation at 1 Million Cups, which meets at The Venture Center on Wednesday mornings at 9 a.m. in their downtown Little Rock facility.
TB&P: How did CartDelivered get its start?
Joshua Ayres: CartDelivered is a platform that has been simmering on the back burner of my mind for about a year-and-half as I researched and sought counsel from many business experts, legal minds, entrepreneurs and investors. One of my consulting projects had led me to research what was taking place in the same-day delivery space. When I realized the caliber of companies looking to provide this service, and the money they were investing to bring it to life, it became clear to me that same-day delivery would soon become very mainstream. With such giants as Walmart, Amazon, Google and eBay developing platforms, as well as many well-funded newcomers such as Instacart, I saw that a “land grab” was taking place and I wanted to be part of it.
There were many obvious hurdles to overcome, but perhaps the biggest challenge was battling my own self-doubt about the audacity of endeavoring to build something like this – “Who am I to take on these giants? Do I really believe I can build a better mousetrap and compete in this space?” The answer came as I continued to research speak with others. At the same time that I realized same-day delivery would soon become mainstream, it also became apparent that there were a number flaws or shared inefficiencies with the models being implemented by the companies mentioned. The go-to-market strategies for these companies make it hard for them to scale, and even if they can scale, it will be very difficult to do so profitably.
All to say, I have continued to consult by day, but also been developing CartDelivered on the side. I am excited about the progress that has been made and the traction gained, and I am eager to transition fully to running CartDelivered.
TB&P: What is next for you after winning the Pitch ‘N Pint contest? Where do you go next?
Ayeres: The Pitch ‘N Pint contest was a great experience and it is exciting to be part of a burgeoning entrepreneurial scene in Little Rock and the state of Arkansas. While I will continue to run the beta test here in Little Rock to obtain as much feedback and insight as possible, my focus has now shifted to an active fundraising mode. My plan is to secure the needed investment that will allow me to focus my full attention on developing the CartDelivered platform. The primary areas of implementation will include: app creation, improved user experience, payment processing. Once these are in place the focus will transition to rapid user acquisition.
TB&P: What do you hope other entrepreneurs will take from your presentation at 1 Million Cups?
Ayres: My hope is that others will be inspired to be intentional about bringing their ideas to life and emboldened to take action. Ideas do not have to be extravagant to be worth pursuing. I am thrilled that there are people like Elon Musk who have both great minds and great ambition. It is incredible to see them pioneer things like the SpaceX, but most of society will realize far more day-to-day benefit from the entrepreneur that solves one of life’s little problems. If necessity is the mother of invention, then we need thousands of people applying their experience and specific skill sets to tackle problems, big and small, that we all face.