Announcing the Genesis Investment in Barkeep

On behalf of Genesis, I’m excited to announce our investment in Barkeep. Barkeep is a mobile app that seeks to revolutionize the nightlife experience.

The Problem

The nightlife industry has yet to embrace modern technology. Ordering at a bar is a hassle: waiting, ordering, and paying usually tacks on 7–8 minutes to the ordering process. While mobile app ordering services exist for food, no apps currently cater to the nightlife industry with its specific nuances. Furthermore, there is no one good resource to compare all the drink specials and events of the night. Barkeep solves both of these problems, enhancing the overall nightlife experience.

Barkeep’s digitization of the drink ordering process improves both speed and experience. Customers can easily order and pay from their phone, without having to yell over loud music or jump up and down to get noticed by a bartender. The bartender can see all the drink orders waiting to be serviced on Barkeep and service them easily.

Barkeep’s promotional service is free to use by any nightlife organization. Not only will it be easier for the nightlife industry to reach their target market, but it will also help app users choose the best drink specials and make the most out of their night.

The Founders

Barkeep was founded by Tu Doan, Staci Shon, and Aviël Ossi. The idea for Barkeep originated when Tu spent a frustrating one hour trying to order, pay for, and obtain a drink from an overworked bartender. After coming up with a way to improve the process, he decided to formally start the venture with Staci and Aviël.

From left to right: Tu Doan, Staci Shon, & Aviel Ossi

Tu Doan — Tu Doan is currently pursuing his Bachelor’s Degree in Aerospace Engineering at UT Austin. He previously earned his associate degree in Biotechnology at Temple College. Tu previously started a cryptocurrency venture called Stack. Stack was an app-based investment platform incorporating micro-investments into the cryptocurrency space. Tu’s responsibilities for Barkeep include front-end development, branding, and general company operations.

Staci Shon — Staci Shon is a recent graduate of the McCombs School of Business at UT Austin. She received her bachelor’s degree in Business Management with a Minor in Marketing. She previously worked with Tu on Stack and was one of the co-founders of the venture. Staci’s responsibilities for Barkeep include client relationships, event operations, and managing staff.

Aviël Ossi — Aviël Ossi received his degree in Computer Science from the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. He has worked in full stack development, cyber security, cloud engineering, and cloud computing for three different companies: KPN, Simtech Consulting, and WebSEC.nl. He then became the CTO of Mr. Porter. Aviël’s responsibilities for Barkeep include backend development and European operations.

How’re They Doing?

Barkeep successfully showcased their product at the ATX Startup Crawl, servicing over 100 customers through the application. Barkeep has partnered with several bars in Austin that will use their promotional service. Barkeep will do a full-scale launch of the app at Ah Sing Den in the SXSW Startup Crawl in March 2019.

Why I Led This Deal by Ashwin Hareesh, Venture Partner

When Tu and his team pitched Barkeep to us, it was clear that he had put tremendous thought into the design of the mobile app. While the idea of modernizing the drink ordering process was exciting, I was more impressed with the amount that the team had accomplished in such a short period of time. The fact that they had already demoed their product and proved that it worked with over 100 customers was a huge plus point for us. Their communication with the due diligence team was stellar and it became clear to us that this was certainly a venture we should back. The combination of a technically experienced team, innovative idea, and impressive traction inspired Genesis to fund this venture.