While many businesses are laying people off as the pandemic spreads, some startups are adapting quickly and rolling out new, urgently needed services. Here’s how some of the Betatron portfolio companies are adapting.
BookAirFreight Built A Site To Order & Ship Certified PPE
BookAirFreight’s pre-pandemic role was to find the best air-shipping rates for SMEs. They ship products door-to-door from suppliers in China to buyers everywhere.
Co-founders Daisy Jiang and Stefan Vainberg leveraged their deep supplier contacts with their ability to get freight on flights to solve a critical problem: people everywhere need trusted, certified PPE immediately.
"We all need to step up and do something to help," said Jiang.
Within a weekend they sourced certified producers, built an e-commerce ordering page, and secured certified inventory. BookAirFreight is already sending PPE by the thousands to the US.
Sakay: Built A Map to Help First Responders & Doctors
Sakay has the best transit maps available in the Philippines. It’s better than Google Maps because Sakay can track informal transit, like jeepneys and tricycles.
They built this map to make it easy for medical teams to get from one place to another. With this tool, doctors can know which types of transport are available to them, where and when to find them, and fastest routes to key medical and government locations. This is especially important at a time when most usual forms of transport have stopped running.
"Our health workers and frontliners are the real heroes here," said Philip Cheang, CEO of Sakay, "and we’re just happy that agencies, operators and volunteers can use our mapping technology and expertise to assist."
Truck Lagbe Deemed An Essential Business in Bangladesh
Truck Lagbe is an on-demand service providing commercial trucks in Bangladesh. Businesses use it to move supplies and products. Consumers use it when they want to move houses.
They’ve been deemed an essential business during the COVID shutdown. Truck stands where drivers, customers and brokers congregate to buy and sell trips have been closed, which has driven new users to the platform. Recognizing the Lockdown's dramatic economic impact, Truck Lagbe has enabled "1 taka trips," which lets truck owners donate trips to organizations in need.
"We're optimizing delivery of crucial goods such as food, medicines and groceries, so customers can stay home," said CFO Ravid Chowdhury.
Betatron Companies Are Trained to Adapt Fast
At Betatron, we take pride in supporting resilient entrepreneurs like these who have a strong bias towards action.