Why We Built Public
Public brings together experience from the public sector, technology and finance to help startups solve public problems.
Everyone deals with the state. You register to vote, receive treatment in hospital and apply for licenses. Some of our interactions are regular: sending in our tax returns each January, for instance. Others are a little more irregular: registering a birth, or a death in the family.
Scaling our interactions with the state up or down according to circumstance should be as easy as shopping on Amazon. Unfortunately, the kind of transformation that we have seen across a range of markets — from retail and banking to food delivery — has yet to considerably impact many public services.
Public sector services are often slow, rarely on mobile, and often struggle to adjust to citizens’ ever-changing needs. There are fantastic pockets of reform, both locally and centrally. However, whilst new technologies like AI and blockchain are much talked of, public services have yet to adopt these technologies (and others) at scale, if at all. Incumbent vendors still dominate public sector deals, and most digital entrepreneurs give the often imposing public sector market a wide berth. The result is a far lower quality, and a far higher cost of service than what citizens should expect.
When we first met over lunch, we quickly recognised that the situation could only be remedied if we could get more technology startups and digital entrepreneurs to focus on public sector problems. And to do that we needed to help provide them with the right combination of insight, networks and capital. And that’s why we built Public.
For us, the kicker was simple: if we could succeed in bringing smarter, more efficient technology solutions to government, we could dramatically improve the costs of delivering services to all citizens and transform the experiences that we have when dealing with our local or state governments. Having spent many amazing months refining Public’s proposition and building out the Public team, we have never been more convinced that our hypothesis is strong and that we have a unique opportunity to meaningfully impact public services in the coming months and years. We hope you will join us in our journey.
Daniel Korski and Alex De Carvalho, CEO & CIO
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