May 11, 2021
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — OurSafeQ, a startup focused on improving the way people wait in line, today announced that it received $20,000 in funding from the Elevate Ventures Community Ideation Fund. The Bloomington-based startup plans to use the funds to grow sales and marketing and improve its product.
OurSafeQ’s technology allows businesses of all types to create and manage lines of people using virtual tickets. The technology uses standard mobile browser technology, so customers do not need to install an app. Customers scan a QR code or use geolocation to join the line and view a real-time count of how many people are waiting ahead of them. The customer is notified when it is their turn.
“What initially attracted me to OurSafeQ was that even though the company was formed out of the pandemic, it has much wider applicability,” said Cy Megnin, Elevate Ventures’ entrepreneur-in-residence serving Velocities, a partnership that supports startups in south-central Indiana. “During the last 18 months, the world has seen wide adoption of technologies some of which will simply change the way we live our lives. I believe this is one of those areas.”
OurSafeQ was founded in 2020 by CEO Martina Barnas, Ph.D. The company launched two successful pilot programs. Steve Brisuda, director of business operations, said the technology was designed to address concerns related to COVID-19 by helping facilitate social distancing while waiting in lines. However, the team believes virtual queueing will remain important beyond the pandemic due to people’s dislike of waiting.
“We are very excited about the Elevate Ventures Community Ideation Fund investment,” said Brisuda. “The funding will help us make virtual queueing the norm by jumpstarting our sales and marketing efforts, thereby allowing small and medium businesses to improve the experience for their customers by eliminating lines and waiting.”
Elevate’s Community Ideation Fund is made possible through its partnership with Velocities. The Community Ideation Fund is available through the state’s 21st Century Research and Technology Fund, which is overseen by the Indiana Economic Development Corp. and promotes economic growth and innovation-driven public-private partnerships in Indiana.