By Abigail Bassett, Sunstone Staff Writer
Joresa Blount, the founder of the logistics tech start-up GoFlyy, says her idea for an innovative business came to her one day while working at Nordstrom as a receptionist and freelancing as a tech journalist before the pandemic.
“I got an assignment to interview some tech founders,” Blount said. “I started to get introduced to all these people…. They didn’t really have the experience, but they were just really passionate about solving problems.”
And Joresa had a problem.
As a self-proclaimed terrible traveler who regularly packs the wrong things or forgets crucial items, Joresa wanted an online service that could solve this problem for her — one that could go and get the item she needed and deliver it to her quickly. When the COVID pandemic hit in 2020, Joresa saw her opportunity.
“We weren’t thinking about clothing or about shoes or cosmetics coming to our door,” Joresa said. “When I was at Nordstrom, I just remember thinking, it’s funny, we work at a fashion company, people shop all the time, you see all these packages coming in, and there has to be a way where someone can just purchase something online, and someone picks it up and brings it to them.”
And GoFlyy was born.
Joresa says GoFlyy powers delivery and return for fashion, wellness, and e-commerce brands, assisting them with same-day logistics. Shoppers can select an item to buy and have the option to receive multiple sizes or styles to try on, and if a product doesn’t fit, GoFlyy will pick it up within 48 hours and return it to the retailer.
According to Joresa, GoFlyy has worked with 35 different retailers, including notables like Armoire (a competitor to Rent-The-Runway, a rental fashion company), Shein, and Revolve.
Joresa says she addresses the challenge of returns for customers and retailers. To streamline this, they manage the entire returns process, even taking products to the laundry for certain retailers.
Currently, GoFlyy is emphasizing its try-on experience, which allows customers to try different sizes and styles at home and return them to the retailer within 48 hours. The service is currently only available in Los Angeles, Seattle, and New York, with plans to expand into Washington, D.C., soon. Retailers pay either a subscription fee based on the number of deliveries and pick-ups they may need in the cities the company serves or a volume fee, which is better for smaller retailers.
Joresa says the company focuses on customer service, with real-time support and updates for shoppers and retailers. She calls it a “concierge delivery experience” and recently landed UrbanStems, a floral delivery service in Los Angeles, as a client.
GoFlyy is part of the current Long Beach Accelerator cohort, and Joresa says the experience has offered tremendous benefits for her growing business.
“I think what stands out to me about the LBA is the community,” she says. “I’ve been introduced to some really great mentors and advisors who have been willing to and have done deep dives with me on my business. I have a CFO mentor, I have a revenue sales mentor, and they are literally giving me tools that we’re implementing in real life.”
Sunstone Management is the capital partner for the LBA, and Joresa says it is invaluable to startups like hers.
“I think the amount of energy and time that they put into helping us grow, you don’t see that very often, nor hear about it. The workshops that they have, and the introductions they’re willing to make,” she says, “all of these things are really helpful. I’ve never seen a VC firm so active.”
For more, go to GoFlyy.com.
Note: We refer to early-stage technology entrepreneurs as Founders. Information provided here is to inform about the types of small business start-ups that have been selected for participation in certain programs in which Sunstone participates. Information provided here is aspirational and there is no assurance of success. Early-stage investing comes with an inherently high degree of risk, including the loss of some or all of an investment. The information provided is neither an offer to sell or an inducement to offer to buy interests in any Sunstone sponsored fund that may have invested in the Founder.
About Long Beach Accelerator
The Long Beach Accelerator provides early-stage tech startups with the resources and runway they need to flourish. The LBA has a current application cycle open for Cohort 7. The LBA is a public-private partnership between the city of Long Beach, Sunstone Management, and CSULB and has been named one of Southern California’s top tech accelerators by dot.LA.
About Sunstone Management
Sunstone Management is a diversified private capital management firm with headquarters in Southern California that provides a range of early-stage venture capital, real estate, and fixed income funds to qualified and accredited investors. The firm delivers new and exciting options for economic growth through innovative public-private partnerships, making use of its unique experience across government, education, and private sectors. Identified by Financial Times as one of America’s Fastest Growing Companies three years in a row. Ranked 18th in the United States on the list of most active venture capital firms by PitchBook.
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