Dripos - The Operating System for Coffee Shops

The All-In-One Coffee Shop Management Solution

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This week’s Startup feature is dripos.com. Dripos is an all-in-one operating system tailored for coffee shops with a vision to fill the gaps left by POS providers like Square and Toast.

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Company & Team Introduction

Gone are the days when coffee shops were forced to stitch together 8 different pieces of hardware and software to run their business; now, they can use Dripos. The YC-backed startup is not trying to be everything to everyone like Square or Toast have attempted; every new product or feature Dripos builds is tailor-made to benefit coffee shops, not the 50 other verticals that industry competition thinks they can simultaneously cater to. The company was founded in 2019 by Jack Pawlik and Avery Durrant. Before founding Dripos, Jack co-founded another YC startup, LeapLine, which lets customers pay to skip lines at events and venues like bars, features like mobile ordering, and the ability to pay in-app for cover. At the same time, Avery worked as CTO of Cork Drinks and as a software engineer at Deltek. The duo initially set out with a vision to help coffee shops build online ordering systems. However, they quickly realized they were making an even bigger problem worse: now companies would have an additional product to add to the uncontrolled mess of 10+ pieces of software they already use, creating an incredibly inefficient system. Jack and Avery shifted their focus and started to build the vertical-specific all-in-one POS system that coffee shops actually want. Dripos is headquartered in New York City, New York and has grown its team to ~24 employees.

Product Overview

Dripos is the tailor-made Point of Sale solution for coffee shops. The company offers an all-in-one combination of software and hardware for everything coffee shops need. The company has 4 main components to their solution: point of sale and ordering system, team management, business management, and marketing suite. The POS and ordering system allows customers to order however they want, including an order ahead app, online ordering site, self-service kiosk, QR code scanning, or POS, and has features such as a powerful kitchen display system that updates customers with live updates on the status of their order. It also provides functionality to offer delivery services in addition to backend management, such as inventory and cash management. Their team management component offers employee scheduling, payroll, team communication, the ability to set role-based permissions for different employees, and automated new hire onboarding. The business management component offers insightful analytics on every aspect of your business, the ability to create and manage invoices, a fully integrated cash management account, and accounting software tailored built for coffee shops. Dripos marketing suite allows any coffee shop to easily offer reward point systems for their customers, which drives increased loyalty, offers both physical and virtual gift cards with custom designs, in addition to the ability to build and manage both text and email campaigns and automatic birthday coupons to customers. Dripos also prides itself on having premium customer service and a 99.9% uptime; as these systems are the backbone of coffee shops, and business owners need an extremely reliable system and help to quickly troubleshoot any issues that may arise.

Total Addressable Market

The problem that Dripos is solving is a widespread issue in the coffee industry. Shops want to avoid switching between 8 different applications to run their business at all costs, which has created a gigantic gap in the market that Dripos is uniquely positioned to serve. The global coffee shop industry is worth as much as 400B annually, with the majority of that number going towards out-of-home purchases, such as coffee shops, kiosks, and vending machines. The US alone accounts for ~20% of the global market, or an 80B market to service first. The industry is forecasted to see respectable mid-single-digit growth rates in the coming years, with the international market growing at a faster clip than the US.

Business Model & The Numbers

Dripos's business has both a hardware and software component. The company charges a flat rate of 2.9% + 5c per transaction for the hardware Point-of-Sale component. Any type of card can be accepted, and all transactions are end-to-end encrypted and PCI compliant. Dripos software subscription pricing starts at $149/month per location, and this gives access to their ordering system, marketing tools, team management, and business management. Additional features can also be purchased, including accounting software for $50/month, delivery integration for $50/month, and payroll capabilities for $5/employee/month. Dripos stated they are processing hundreds of millions in annual payments.

Traction

Dripos has seen promising traction since its launch. The company is now the backbone of over 100k coffee shops across 46 states. Growth has been strong, with the number of coffee shops relying on Dripos increasing by over 400% in 2023. Dripos also has a healthy 4.7-star rating on the app store after 14 reviews. The company serves industry leading customers such as Please & Thank You (voted #1 best cookie by USA Today, 6 locations), Revolución Coffee + Juice (5 Locations), and Grace Co. coffee (3 locations), stating “The whole system really is a delight to use, we’ve saved 20% on delivery fees.”

Competitors

The competitive landscape for modern POS systems is cutthroat as the addressable market is immense. Massive competitors with seemingly unlimited resources like Square (NYSE: SQ, 43B MC) and Toast (NYSE: TOST, 15B MC) own the market, but their offerings of these one-size-fits-all cookie-cutter solutions ignore the nuances of each specific vertical, providing a subpar experience and forces business owners to stitch together multiple pieces of software together (Square/Toast, ChowNow, Quickbooks, HomeBase, 7 Shifts, etc.) to run their business, creating an unsynchronized mess. Customers also appreciate Dripos’ top-tier customer service; these systems are the heart of QSRs like coffee shops. When these businesses contact customer support, they need real answers fast; they are not looking to talk to Square or Toast’s undertrained chatbot. Another crucial aspect of these businesses is uptime, and Dripos’ 99.9% uptime is superior to competitors, namely Toast, whose customers have had problems with frequent outages in the past. Dripos’ vertical-specific focus allows them to build the best combination of hardware and software solutions for the coffee industry rather than trying to Frankenstein 10 horizontal solutions together.

Funding

Dripos has raised several rounds of funding, with their first 125K of outside capital coming after completing Y Combinator’s accelerator program in Summer 2020. The company also raised a proper pre-seed round in 2020 led by PJC with participation from AltalR Capital but did not disclose the valuation or funding amount. In March 2022, the company tapped the capital markets again, raising a seed round this time led by Cota Capital with PJC and well-known YC angel investor Michael Seibel among participants in the round. Fast forward to April of this year, Dripos just raised an impressive $11M Series A round spearheaded by Base10 Partners, fund Cota Capital also took part in the round in addition to an impressive list of angel investors including Ian Crosby (Co-founder of Teal, Bench), Micheal Seibel (Managing Director, YC), Shyam Rao (Founder, Punchh acq. by PAR Technologies for $500M) among others. The company has raised a total of $17.3M across all of its funding rounds.

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