Tag: GiftAMeal



Andrew Glantz, GiftAMeal

Conceived on a lunch break, born in undergraduate school and funded before Andrew Glantz’s graduation, GiftAMeal has made headlines and garnered attention from the startup world before. Now, the company’s cofounder and CEO has been featured with a Q&A in the St. Louis Business Journal outlining how the idea came about and why it’s expanded into three cities since its 2015 launch.

In a Dec. 21 piece on the Journal’s website (subscription required for full article), Glantz, BSBA ’17, said the company was conceived as a way to help promote restaurants and contribute to a social good at the same time. “It’s a free way to give back to the community and be a part of the solution to the hunger problem,” Glantz told the Journal.

GiftAMeal operates a mobile app that makes it easy for diners to “turn a photo into food.” They can find restaurants they love and donate a meal to an area food pantry by simply posting a photo as they have their meal.

The Journal feature covers how the idea launched, its early efforts to get funding, the challenge of signing on its first restaurant partner and the biggest challenge it faces today: “Figuring out how to scale GiftAMeal from what we have, to being a nationwide company.”

The company now serves Operation Food Search in St. Louis (where it has 75 restaurant partners), Lakeview Pantry in Chicago (25), and Forgotten Harvest in Detroit (six). Glantz said the company is at a breakeven point—though he’s not yet taking a salary yet—with monthly revenue up 195 percent over last year.

Olin Professor Cliff Holekamp told the Journal the app’s values goes beyond what it provides to the pantries, but also to the participating restaurants.

“Not only does it position them as a socially conscious business,” said Holekamp, senior lecturer in entrepreneurship and academic director for entrepreneurship, “but it delivers them tangible marketing value in the process. It’s a win-win for both the restaurants and for the people who are being helped by the meals donated through the platform.”




Students in the CELect Entrepreneurship Course, held at the T-REx startup accelerator, are sharing their team projects with the Olin Blog. Student team Anna Cossio, Mark Gum, Nick Rafferty, and Shannon Turner describe the experience of consulting for their client, alum-founded GiftAMeal. 


The CEL entrepreneurial consulting team course (CELect) provides WashU students the opportunity to work with and solve business challenges for St. Louis-area startups. Our team is working with GiftAMeal CEO Andrew Glantz, BSBA’17, to develop a marketing strategy for the company’s St. Louis region. Through this marketing strategy, we hope to increase downloads and engagement on GiftAMeal’s mobile app.

GiftAMeal is the perfect example of the amazing work for-profits can accomplish when they tackle social causes. Since 2015, Andrew and his team have worked with various mentors, accelerators, and investors to develop an app meant to address food insecurity by providing meals to food banks.

[RELATED: Gift A Meal doubles donations]

Here’s how it works: Download the app and check out one of your favorite participating St. Louis restaurants. When your meal arrives at the table, take a picture of your food, and share with your friends via the social media outlet built into the GiftAMeal app. Once your photo has been shared, GiftAMeal will donate a meal to Operation Food Search in St. Louis at absolutely no cost to you. It’s as simple as that!

[RELATED: Glantz named to AKPsi 40 Under 40 list]

Our team has loved working with Andrew and his team on this project. His drive to address food insecurity in the community has proven to be contagious. Beyond that, it is inspiring for us to know that our recommendations will translate into a larger impact for GiftAMeal. Not only are we learning how to formulate and communicate our recommendations in a professional setting, we are also contributing to the success of an application that will provide support to many families in need.

Working on this project has given us the experience of working from the ground up to understand the current needs of clients and users of the app. We have interviewed restaurant owners who are registered under the GiftAMeal application, analyzed feedback from current app users, and experienced using the app first-hand by donating meals as we dine at restaurants. Each of these steps have allowed us to begin formulating ideas for the recommendations we will provide Andrew and his team in the following weeks. Stepping into the business world has given us the opportunity to attain real-world knowledge, an experience not often available to students stuck in the classroom.

Guest Bloggers: Anna Cossio, BSCS/BSSSE ’20, Mark Gum, Law ’18, Nick Rafferty, BSBA ’20, Shannon Turner, MBA ’18 




Andrew Glantz, BSBA’17, at 22 years old, is one of the youngest people named to the Alpha Kappa Psi Business Fraternity’s 40 Under 40 list. With 163,538 members around the world, Glantz reports he is, “the third youngest to be included on the list that includes individuals such as the Co-Founder of Reddit and VPs at Lyft and UBS, and another WashU student – Sara Miller!”

Glantz is co-founder and CEO of GiftAMeal, a for-profit social enterprise that invites customers at participating restaurants to use the GiftAMeal mobile app to share photos of their meal. For each meal shared, a donation is made to a local food bank.

Jacob Mohrman (left) and Andrew Glantz.

“I am honored to represent WashU on the Alpha Kappa Psi list. After graduating Magna Cum Laude with the Joseph W. Towle Prize for greatest potential in organizational leadership, I am excited to announce that I will be remaining in St. Louis to work full-time on GiftAMeal.” Olin faculty, mentors, and St. Louis investors can share in the excitement when a home-grown startup remains in the city’s burgeoning entrepreneurial community to evolve and and expand.

GiftAMeal won multiple awards while Glantz was an undergrad including being named a “Top 3 Student Startup” in the country at the South by Southwest Conference. The company received its first investment of $100,000 from the Capital Innovators accelerator in St. Louis, marking the first time that the group had invested in an undergraduate startup.

GiftAMeal helps restaurants acquire and retain customers, while also feeding the hungry in our communities. To date, the company has provided 68,499 meals to those in need.

Related Blog posts.

Alpha Kappa Psi is a Professional Co-ed Business Fraternity founded in 1904 with the purpose of developing its’ members into principled business leaders. Originally founded by 4 men at New York University, the professional organization now has over 240,000 initiated members at 265 universities in 3 countries. Alpha Kappa Psi has grown to be the oldest and largest business fraternity in the world.




Student startup, GiftAMeal, the mobile app that allows users to donate to local food pantries when they eat at partnering restaurants has expanded to a third city: Detroit.

“Foodies in Detroit can now get in on the GiftAMeal action at one of our six initial locations there,” said Jacob Mohrmann, BSBA’16, Chief Marketing Officer of GiftAMeal.  “Meals will be provided through Forgotten Harvest, an organization in Detroit that rescued, harvested and distributed 48.8 million pounds of food this past year.”

And Jacob shared more good news:

“We are also happy to announce that we have now provided over 50,000 meals (St. Louis, Chicago, and Detroit combined).  This is a huge step, but as Andrew [Glantz, BSBA’17] said in his interview with WGN TV,  ‘in terms of how big we want this to become, we want it to be, not in the thousands, but in the millions of meals donated.’ “

GiftAMeal is also featured on the cover of StreetWise Magazine in Chicago this month.

streetwise cover giftamealAccording to the article, GiftAMeal has partnered with “20 Chicago-area restaurants and Lakeview Pantry to provide meal donations locally.  Now, each time someone in Chicago uses GiftA-Meal, meals are provided to someone in the Chicago area through Lakeview. In less than a year, the app has been downloaded over 3,000 times in Chicago, and these users have been quick to rack up 10,000 meal donations on the app.”

 

 

giftameal logo 1




GiftAMeal, a mobile app student startup founded by Andrew Glantz, BSBA’17, that turns the trend of photo-sharing into an act of generosity to help feed the hungry is expanding beyond St. Louis to Chicago. In less than a year since its launch, GiftAMeal has funded the distribution of over 4,500 meals in the St. Louis area through Operation Food Search and partnerships with over 115 restaurants.

GiftAMeal’s Head of Business Development and Chicago-native Michael Kaushansky said, “Chicago seemed like a natural extension of our business, and we look forward to providing thousands of more meals to local food pantries throughout the Greater Chicago area.”  To provide meals in Chicago, GiftAMeal has partnered with Lakeview Pantry, one of the city’s largest and longest-operating food pantries.

Jacob Mohrman and Andrew Glantz at a photoshoot for Olin Business Magazine. They will be featured in the Fall issue.

Jacob Mohrmann (BSBA’16) and Andrew Glantz at a photoshoot for Olin Business Magazine. They will be featured in the Fall issue.

GiftAMeal has partnered with 20 Chicago area restaurants since entering the market 2 months ago.  Initial restaurants in the area are: Perry’s Deli, Halsted Street Deli, Pita Express, The Shamrock Club, The Stained Glass, The Cellar, The Tavern, Fuji Thai, Gilmer Road House, Blue Frog’s Local 22, Firkin, Tina G’s, The Bad Apple, EJ’s Place, 545 North, Tavern on 60, Webster’s Wine Bar, Cross-Rhodes, Nick’s Pizza + Pub, and Salsa 17.

GiftAMeal users emphasize how easy it is to give back on the app. In a user survey conducted in June, one user said,

“I love how easy it is to go through the process to donate a meal. It’s so great having an option like this available to help others!” Another user wrote, “GiftAMeal is an idea perfect for today. I think people want to do more to help and will recommend restaurants that commit to their communities.”

Join the movement to fight hunger in our community. Download GiftAMeal and start snapping photos. Follow GiftAMeal’s story on Facebook (GiftAMeal), Twitter (@giftamealapp), and Instagram (@giftamealapp).

Top photo: Glantz, Mohrmann, and co-founder Aiden Folbe at GiftAMeal partner restaurant Applebee’s.


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