Mark Scattolon and Fabian Raso pitched to the Dragons last week and got served a $120K deal for 20% of their company. Hangry, the app that allows students to find, order, and pay for food on campus, eliminates the anger that comes with being hungry and lets students save time by skipping the line.
Mark and Fabian secured a deal with Dragons Michelle Romanow, Joe Mimran and Michael Wekerle. With the funds, they hope to acquire and market at new schools, hire a team in the GTA and Western Canada, and continue developing their mobile technology.
Hangry is currently available at the University of Toronto, St. George Campus and will be launching in McMaster University’s East Meets West Bistro before likely rolling out across campus in 2016. The duo also have five other major universities across Canada ready for 2016.
The Hangry app allows users to browse open eateries, select their order (or easily reorder “the usual”), and choose a pick-up time. It is a huge convenience to university and college students on busy and rigid schedules, who crave fuel between their studies.
The order auto prints to the corresponding kitchen and users can see exactly which stage of the process their food is at – received, preparing, and ready. Hangry is integrated with student meal plans or can be paid via credit card. While the app is free to download, there is a 10% convenience fee added to each transaction.
Mark and Fabian have done extensive research with student focus groups in understanding the value of time and convenience, and discovered (to no surprise) that people are willing to pay for convenience. Scattolon explains, “Millennials today are not a generation that is price sensitive, they’re value sensitive. They want experiences, simplicity, and convenience in their everyday life — that’s exactly what Hangry brings to the always-on-go student community.”
Orders are picked up by scanning the phone receipt at the cafeteria’s dedicated Hangry booth, followed by the Hangry staff addressing them by name and handing them their always-fresh order.
Sometimes first-time users even get a free gift, such as a Hangry shirt, water-bottle, or even a branded selfie-stick.
Hangry users are rewarded with a loyalty program to unlock different levels and redeem points to save a dollar on their next meal. The referral program gives both the new user and the person who referred them a $5 credit for free food.
The 28-year old partners behind the app are both native Hamiltonians and boast a range of skill sets and experience. Mark graduated from McMaster University’s Honours Commerce program where he was co-winner of Canada’s Next Top Ad Exec in 2010. He moved on to work with clients like General Motors and Labatt before leaving his full-time job to focus on Hangry. Fabian completed a Math and Computer Science degree before earning his J.D. and MBA at Queen’s University. He is a commercial lawyer and has experience in both mobile and backend software development. The two met through a mutual friend in university. Mark’s sales, marketing and creative background mixed with Fabian’s ability to code, oversee all legal documents, combined with their strong business acumen makes for a great team.
“Fabian and I made an oath to keep each other on track with sleeping and eating. We’re so driven and invested, we never question if the other person is working when remote.”
Keeping their success quiet since the show was filmed in April was tough, but Mark got to celebrate with close family and friends as the show aired live at Serve Ping Pong – who of course, did not let the crowd go hangry.
The duo was prepared for their tv debut, having already been involved in many pitch competitions in the past, including last years’ Lion’s Lair. They also had the community support of people like Mandeep Malik and Nick Bontis from McMaster University’s DeGroote School of Business, as well as David Carter and Emily Kinread from the Innovation Factory.
We asked Mark a couple of questions to end our chat.
There is surely no shortage of places to conquer your hanger in Hamilton. What are some of your favourites?
How do you feel about the three Dragons you have on board?
We couldn’t have asked for anything better. We didn’t expect three. We were hoping for one if anything. Michelle is the E-commerce and mobile guru who told us to focus on campuses only. Joe is a creative genius who we would love to have on from a marketing and creative standpoint. And Michael is so well connected, he knows everybody and everything, and doing great things in the start-up community.
What do you love about Hamilton?
It’s amazing to have a cast of Hamilton rockstars around us and you don’t always get that level of engagement in Toronto. Hamilton is intimate, personal, and rich and we’re proud to be representing the Hammer. This city is uprising, especially in the startup community. It’s a great time to be an entrepreneur in Hamilton!
What do you do for fun?
I love the Toronto Raptors, never miss a game. Music is also a great love of mine. I wake up every morning and take 30 minutes to jam on the piano and sing terribly. I also love trying new wines and beers — it’s a great way to relax and disconnect from this always-on lifestyle.
What advice do you have for young entrepreneurs?
Eliminate fear from your vocabulary. In the entrepreneurial world, people love the idea of having a start up and people want to have their own business. But it’s a curse to have that passion because you can’t turn it off. If you have that feeling inside of your belly that you want to build something from the ground up or do something that no one else has done yet. I assure you that is not going to go away. Go full speed into it while you’re young. Now is the opportunity to.
When I graduated from McMaster, the job I wanted was the highest salary, that was my criteria. I was so money hungry. Sometimes a little bit of sacrifice and taking some risks can give you bigger pay off in the end. Corporate experience is one of the biggest backbones to any entrepreneur. When you have the time and you’re ready to do it, go full speed into it, and surround yourself with people who are smarter than you. Egos never succeed in business and everyone has their own skill set. Fabian is the ying to my yang and vice versa. There are people out there that will help — like the Innovation Factory and the Hamilton Chamber. Network, meet people, find purpose and be honest in your work, and don’t forget to have fun along the way. Know the roller coaster is coming, there will be highs and lows — just don’t get off the ride.
Learn more about Hangry and how to get started on their website.
SPECIAL OFFER: McMaster students can download the app on the Apple or Android store and use the promo code, ‘GOMAC5’ to get $5 free to use when they launch in January.