This Week’s Startup; Youii w/ Jabari Sills
We’re super excited to be interviewing Jabari Sills on what is the second episode in the much anticipated Accelerate Your Startup Series with Fownders.
Jabari is the CEO and Founder of an innovative app called Youii, which replaces the conventional way for college students to travel across their campuses.
What is Youii you ask?
Youii is the first ever subscription based ride sharing app, exclusively for university students.
Before you write this off as another copy of Uber or Lyft, it’s really not. Jabari saw a gap in the market by niching down specifically to university/college students.
Jabari saw a huge gap in the market by niching down specifically to university/college students.
Instead of taking the shuttle bus, which we all know and hate, you can now enjoy a comfortable ride across campus in luxury, all for an affordable $1 per ride.
I know right?
As you can probably understand, when we found were put in contact with Jabari, we knew we had to feature him on the show.
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Where Did it all Start for Jabari?
Jabari grew up in New Jersey and attended Hill-Side High School.
During his time at Hill Side, he realised that they didn’t offer much for entrepreneurs to grow and flourish in themselves.
So much so that he hadn’t even realised the entrepreneurial capabilities that were buried inside of him.
Until he attended Hartford College in Connecticut with plans of becoming a doctor. With a passion for helping people and learning about how to human body works, he thought that this would be the path for him.
Since a young age, Jabari wanted to do something that he fell in love with and enjoyed doing on a daily basis.
The day came where he could successfully say that he had graduated college.
Having launched himself into his new career, he quickly realised that the path he had chosen wasn’t all that it had been cracked up to be.
The work schedule, and how he had no time for himself and his loved ones all became a sudden realisation that he had to find something new.
Jabari took some time to figure out what it is that he wanted to do in life which would make him live to his full potential.
During his time searching for a path of happiness, he was introduced to the startup world, which has fascinated him since a young age.
Jabari started to work for a startup called Smacktive which connected people with similar interests, which lead him to want to start something of his own.
Thus, Youii was born. We go into more detail during this episode.
Time Stamped Show Notes Part 1
[02:45] Jabari tells us more about himself and where it all started for him.
[04:56] We speak about the startup that Jabari worked for which made him realise he wanted to get started in the mobile app, tech industry.
[05:40] Youii was born and we find out the reason behind it and how the idea came to life.
[07:00] Brad expresses the need for a service for Youii in the UK.
[08:14] Jabari speaks about the process of building Youii in the development stage.
[09:00] We find out that Jabari quit his job to focus on Youii.
[09:15] How did Jabari’s family feel about this decision? Was his support network with him every step of the way?
[10:30] What is the monetization strategy?
[12:00] Uber and Lyft are Youii’s main competitors, how is Youii different?
[13:30] Youii pays their drivers a salary, we speak about the advantages of this.
[14:10] What is the process of becoming a Youii driver?
[16:00] How many users does Youii have?
[16:30] How is Jabari pitching universities to subscribe to Youii?
[17:30] Jabari discusses the future for Youii and how he plans to update its revenue model.
[19:00] How many universities does Youii have under its belt?
[19:30] Jabari speaks about his exit strategy and if he has one.
[20:00] How many colleges would benefit by using Youii?
[21:22] Where is Jabari now in terms of investment for Youii?
[25:00] The origins of the Youii branding come out.
[27:00] So far, is there anything that has gone wrong for Jabari during the process?
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Time Stamped Show Notes Part 2
[29:00] Why did Jabari decide that putting Youii through a Startup Accelerator was the right thing to do for the business?
[30:10] How early in the business did Jabari approach Gerard Adams & Fownders?
[31:25] We talk about surrounding yourself with other like-minded individuals that help you grow.
[32:30] Does the relationship with Fownders continue after going through the Seed2Scale platform?
[35:00] Could Youii got to where it is today without Fownders?
[35:40] What does a day look like going through the platform?
[36:00] Does Jabari see Youii being used around the world?
[37:00] Jabari talks about the mascot that represents Youii.
Where to Contact Youii
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