Dan Park has had a colourful career so far - 20 years ago he was at McGill with Qasim, StartWell's founder/CEO, and since then has worked in investment banking and venture capital before taking the helm at Uber to define their UberEats business across Canada.
Through his experience at Uber, Dan learned a lot about transportation and when he was approached to further develop Canada's first online retailer for used cars - Clutch, he jumped at the opportunity - and has since grown it into the largest operator in segment.
This is a fun and insightful conversation for anyone interested in the Canadian business landscape - from startups to scaleups, and comprises the 60th episode of the StartWell Podcast.
Spend time with this conversation - here's the full transcript
UberEATS app development and growth
Dan Park 0:01
Uber Eats the app, the standalone UberEATS app was actually built just down the street from here. So Toronto was actually the launch city for UberEATS. Someone that I had met in my VC days reached out to me and said, Hey, look, there's this early stage business around cars, you're delivering food. You should deliver cars. To me, it seemed insane that
Dan Park 0:20
in order to go buy a car, you'd have to go to a local dealership and spend five to six hours on a Saturday. If you have kids, drag them along and have them running around or you meet some stranger in a Tim Hortons parking lot.
Qasim Virjee 0:34
You hand over a wad of cash
Dan Park 0:36
and then you know it. Hope that goes okay. Right. So those are the two those are literally the only two options. We are a two sided marketplace for us car sales. I joined in 2019. Since that year, we have 25 extra revenue. So it's been pretty exponential growth. I think it took me three weeks to close my series B for Series B, how big. So we did a $75 million equity round and then we tacked on $150 million deadline to that $250 million deadline. Yeah.
Life, career, and experiences after graduating from McGill University.
Qasim Virjee 1:11
Founded in 2017, start well is Toronto's independent hub for innovators to collaborate, our podcasts relate perspectives from the world's most diverse urban population to reflect unique insights into global business, Media and Culture.
Dan Park 1:32
Before we start, I have something for you.
Qasim Virjee 1:34
Is that something to read on air?
Dan Park 1:35
A little bit, but not really. It's a very brief thing. Oh, so I, so I don't know if you've read this. This is this will be fun. This is fun. Okay, I don't know if you remember, but like check. No. So
Dan Park 1:46
I think we reconnected when was like, before pandemic, right.
Qasim Virjee 1:51
Qasim Virjee 1:52
Well, I saw Yeah, because I saw you was that no, that was during pandemic and maybe so you're that like tech to spring social. Yeah.
Dan Park 1:58
But then you reminded me you're like, hey, look like we were at? We ran for smooth together. Yeah, right. Right. And so is that from the tribune or something? Oh,
Dan Park 2:09
yes, you're right. I totally forgot. Again, so I pulled it up. Oh, wait, can I just read the one quote because I feel like it's very easy to read this. This is interesting. It's very appropriate for this podcast. Ramya for all right, because this into the episode Yeah, right. So this so 20 years ago with more than 20 years ago at this back in 9899. No, no, it was like 2000 2001 Okay, just over 20 years ago, we both ran for SSMU.
Dan Park 2:34
McGill yeah basically school government student government and I thought this was a very appropriate quote for to start a podcast please his favorite quote, the face of a child can say it all. Especially for the most part.
Dan Park 2:49
That was your favorite quote.
Qasim Virjee 2:53
So great, so I get asked by the newspaper all the candidates running for president position in Student Council.
Qasim Virjee 3:01
Give us an inspiring quote to show us how intellectually why we
Dan Park 3:04
who is it who is it by probably like Jack Handy, yeah, Handy.
Qasim Virjee 3:07
Like Saturday Night Live.
Qasim Virjee 3:11
Yeah, absolutely bad. Honestly, you got to counterbalance the like the wit with the with the humor. Exactly. No, that's that's how far we go back in theory. So yeah, do Phil go way back. 20 years? More. You gotta hang out, man. All right. Damn. That's what happens. I know. lots happened since continue to happen. Exactly. Man. Okay, let's talk business. Yep. And life. And jump into it. Yeah. So Dan Park. Welcome to Studio man. Thanks for having me. This is awesome. It is a pleasure. And as we just as we just talked about, our story goes back, you know, 20 plus years. Yeah. Same University. Montreal. That's right. Went to different cities post that different career experiences? Yep. at McGill at university, what did you do for a degree? I did business. So okay, commerce guy. So see, I started in commerce as well. Yeah, I was doing starting my B. com. And then like a week in, I liked my electives more. And I went that way. And then it took me two years to officially transfer into arts and like, then I did a degree in the opposite story actually started in arts. Oh, and then move to business. That's interesting. Yeah. And then you got you. You actually, I didn't really get a job after university immediately. I had to go into business to like, you know, not because I couldn't get a job. But you got a job. I did. Well, it was a it was an interesting time, right? Because we were graduating supply is I was graduating September, it was September, the recruiting season was September 2001.
Dan Park 4:38
So I remember 911 I was in the school cafeteria watching that happen. And you know, obviously, devastating. Sure. But from a job perspective, no one very few people got jobs and I was lucky enough to get one. So moved to Bay Street, did a year of investment banking, and then moved to New York, where I spent
Qasim Virjee 4:59
The next eight years. Wait a second. When did you move to New York?
Dan Park 5:03
I moved in 2005.
Qasim Virjee 5:05
Okay, I moved to New York in 2004. Okay. I left in 2005. I lived in Harlem. Okay. I worked in Greenwich Village. All right. And then and then opposite NYU on, like, Broadway West Broadway. Yeah, we're Yes. About a year before moving. Yeah.
Dan Park 5:23
So I live office was in the financial district. So it was literally on Wall Street. And so I had a kind of a dorm like apartment or just beside Wall Street. So it was that was my I spent a lot of time at the office though, man. And did you dig it for the years that you were in New York? I love doing on Yeah, no, I loved it. I went back after business school.
Career journey from finance to VC to Uber
Dan Park 5:42
Dan Park 5:44
and then met my wife and Business School. And then we both looked at each other said, you're Canadian. I'm Canadian. We should have kids. We should have those kids in Canada. And we moved back to Canada.
Dan Park 5:56
Moved to Calgary for a little bit and then was in San Francisco prior to that. So kind of bounced around North America, but then eventually settled in Toronto back in 2016 15.
Qasim Virjee 6:07
Calgary was another random interconnection, because I think that's where we reconnected the for the first time after McGill. Because I at the time, perhaps if I have this correct, was with SoftLayer running their startup program. Yeah. And there was some sort of like,
Qasim Virjee 6:23
I forget what it was called, was in their body that that brings together like x Valley or valley people from Alberta, sort of like the C 100. But for Alberta, oh, there's an A 100. That's it. Yeah. So there was an A 100 event that I had gone to right. And I think you were there. And this must have been 2050 1450. And that's what I met like, and became friends with Pat Lawrence. And every time I go back to Calgary, we hang out. Yeah, that's when we met too. Yeah, it's funny. Yeah. Small world, right. I mean, extremely intact. It's a very small world, big country filled with very few people. That's right. We're all pretty awesome.
Qasim Virjee 7:00
And then so like you fast forward to, like, you know, working in kind of like, banking. Yeah. And then you went out to the Valley for a bit.
Dan Park 7:07
Yeah. So I broke into the VC back in 2013. And that's kind of my journey to San Francisco, and then eventually to Calgary to help run a fund based out of SF, start a Canadian business. And so my job was about 60%, sourcing new deal flow in Canada, and then 40% in the US. And so I commute actually back and forth from San Francisco on a monthly basis.
Dan Park 7:31
But learned a ton VC was probably one of the more intellectually stimulating jobs that I've had in my career, because you're meeting entrepreneurs every day.
Dan Park 7:41
And talking about business models. But the real I mean, I think this is a very much a personal feeling. But I very much felt like an imposter. Why is that I'm a finance guy, meeting with these entrepreneurs trying to build business trying to provide advice, you know, my real only value add is capital.
Qasim Virjee 8:00
So you want it to be more, or that probably is what the imposter syndrome was, like, yeah, dig in more into the businesses and have more like
Dan Park 8:07
that. And also, you know, to sit across the table from an entrepreneur that's trying to build a business going through problems, scaling, hiring people, structuring teams, figuring out strategic direction, all those things. Now hard to pine on when you know, for the last five years, you've been a finance guy, right? And so, you know, I knew something about finance and raising capital and your balance sheet should look like but I think the day to day ops, is really hard to help with. And frankly, I think, you know, a VC spends most of their time across eight to 10 companies in their portfolio. So the reality is that even the best VCs can't be fully immersed in a business otherwise, they're probably not doing their job properly. And so.
Dan Park 8:51
But for me, it felt like I was missing that, that, that perspective to help entrepreneurs. And so
Dan Park 8:59
that's when Uber back in 2015, was experimenting around putting stuff in cars, Travis Travis was still there at the time. That's the founder is the founder, Travis Kalanick. And he was like, well, we can get a car to show up in five minutes. What else can we put in a car and deliver to people and so we started putting groceries, toilet paper, toothpaste, food,
Dan Park 9:25
to see if there were any signals and said, turns out that people wanted food on demand. And initially, I was hired. My official title was gm of Uber, everything in Canada, Uber, everything. I remember that and that was just a catch all for like, well, everything. What else can we do? Yeah, everything that wasn't rides effectively.
Dan Park 9:42
And when when we when they would present us on town halls, you know, here's the pie charts. It's like the two businesses. Yeah, it would be they call it core and non core. And so if there's a way to make people feel, not important, it's or unimportant. You call them non core
Dan Park 10:00
So we weren't here, everything was everything to us, but your non core. So but we were the we were the weird. And if you ever talked to anyone that was at Uber back in the early days in the eats, particularly on the eats business, we were the weird people in the corner of the office trying to deliver food while like the rides business was doing what they were doing. And
Qasim Virjee 10:21
so kool aid was about killing the taxi industry or bettering it.
Dan Park 10:26
Well, I think it was providing reliable transportation. Right. Well phrase that was that was that was the that was the mission. I think the mission the official mission was to provide transportation as reliable as running water. Okay. That changed over time. But that was that was Travis's. Northstar. Yeah. But then we evolved to food and the initial iteration of UberEATS was I don't know if you remember this back in like 2015, it was called Uber Instant. And it was, it was in the Uber rides app where you could you can pick, now you can pick Uber X or black or green. Now a bit back then there was a food and weed stuff, a bunch of Ubers. So we go there's a couple of there's four parking lots around the city. So we'd meet the bunch of drivers, they'd line up, and we'd stuff
UberEATS growth and lessons learned.
Dan Park 11:15
an Uber with like 15 pad ties. And then the next driver would come with stuff, another 15 pad ties in, and then they drive around the city. And you order them on demand waiting for people to ask for a pad type. Well, there was like for every day, there was four or five menu items. From burgers priest, it was like Pad Thai from pie. There was you know, curry from Sukhothai. Like there was like five or six menu items. Yeah, it would drive around. And then, you know, at the end of the day, some cars would be sold out in an hour, some cars would not have sold anything. Inventory planning was a nightmare. It was just an experiment. It was just an experiment. Every day would show up. Okay, I guess we're all having bad time for dinner because no one ordered it. And so a lot of spoilage. And we realized quickly that that wasn't scalable. Yeah. But it turns out that people really wanted food on demand. And so that was
Qasim Virjee 12:14
there just in Canada, or was this something happening? This was happening
Dan Park 12:16
globally. But then Uber Eats the app, the standalone UberEATS app was actually built, just down the street from here, oh, I'm in a conference room back in 2015. It was launched in December 2015. I joined a few months later, I was launched, okay, at the time was running, both were running the standalone app, but we were also running the instance business. And that launched, so Toronto was actually the launch city for UberEATS. In Canada and globally. That's very interesting. And so there was a lot of Canadian DNA around the UberEATS business around leadership around, you know, just generally globally. Was that by design, or was that by happenstance? I haven't said because we've launched it in Toronto, right? Yeah. So Toronto for a long time was the largest UberEATS. City in terms of number of delivery deliveries for Uber globally.
Qasim Virjee 13:04
Which is pretty cool. Not New York were
Dan Park 13:07
vention. The the for the first two years. It wasn't New York, it wasn't London. And frankly, we always said look, if Toronto ends up being largest UberEATS. City globally, something's gone wrong. Yeah. Yeah. So it is isn't anymore. But for a long time, it was just because it was first it was the first cohort. Wow. And so and we scaled by the time I left, we were doing a million deliveries a week in Canada. And so it was an incredible ride of that business. The rates business grew faster than the rides business and the rides business in theory was the fastest growing business of all time, at least at the time, right. And so the growth rate was incredible exponential, and built the consumer brand. Learned a lot around mean Uber had didn't have a consumed like a customer. It was never a cut and really b2b facing business. And so restaurant acquisition had to be done. Right had to be built. So sales teams had to be built customer experience and customer service had to be built. And it
Qasim Virjee 14:07
was new terroir, right? Because like that whole food on demand thing wasn't concerted. It was always like each restaurant handling their own delivery if need be. Yep. And yeah, that'd be like someone running out to send it down that road. Exactly.
Dan Park 14:18
And now we fast forward, you know, whatever it is 10 not
Qasim Virjee 14:20
20 years, not
Dan Park 14:21
yet. Not even 10 years, eight years. It's now just part of the culture and how we function as a society, which is kind of cool. Yeah.
Qasim Virjee 14:30
Crazy. If we were sitting here as like, what, I don't know, 22 year olds. Yeah. We wouldn't know a reality as adults other than relying on Uber.
Dan Park 14:41
I mean, when we were back in McGill, we'd have fallen Mikey's for the chicken season right.
Qasim Virjee 14:48
Record show I never phoned that up from like, twice my tenure at McGill. But yeah, it was pretty creamy. Yeah,
Dan Park 14:55
right. So you there's one guy that delivered food it was like the one item right it
Qasim Virjee 14:59
was It's true. That was like one dude.
Dan Park 15:03
But yeah, we learned a lot. And I remember distinctly there was this long debate on whether or not we should have fast food on the platform or not interest and and now it seems so obvious that people want McDonald's on demand. But at the time,
Qasim Virjee 15:16
because they were thinking like cheap food means no margin,
Dan Park 15:20
well, cheap food, no margin, but also it's fast food. Why do you want fast food delivered? Just go and pick up fast food? Right? And so there was this long debate whether we need to get McDonald's or not. And then eventually we obviously did because it's on the platform. Yeah. And then within 30 days, top 10 restaurants or McDonald's locations that are amenable and people and it was it was accessing a very different demographic of people
Qasim Virjee 15:47
also teaches you things about food. Right? So what were the main lessons you learn about food and people's appetites?
Dan Park 15:55
I think people really value convenience. I think that's a baby. seems obvious now. But people I think the most active Uber single not business, but you know, individual UberEATS eater, ordered six 700 times a year. Twice
Qasim Virjee 16:11
a day, twice a day. Yep. One person, one person. Right. Wow.
Dan Park 16:15
And so, you know, people value convenience. And speed. I think I learned a lot about operations, because the importance of speed is very important in food delivery, because if you're slow, it's cold and spoils. So there's speed and having everything really tight from an operating perspective
Qasim Virjee 16:37
that goes from educating the vendor as well. And packaging. Yep,
Entrepreneurship, product development, and car buying experience.
Dan Park 16:41
packaging, driver interaction, preparation using the technology.
Qasim Virjee 16:48
And the technology was evolving on both sides. So it
Dan Park 16:52
was I mean, probably slower than you'd probably expect. Okay, I think the other thing I learned and I think goober was really good at that was actually leading with operations and not with product. Okay, product is definitely the one of the most expensive engineers or some of the most expensive hires, you'll have at a company engineers, it takes time to build and design product and test it. And so we would operationally hack things in Google Sheets or manually or throw people at the problem, right to be able to fill the gap that product would was supposed to fill. Sure. And we do that for years until we knew that okay, this is the process that we are, we are using to solve this problem. Right. And then Okay, now we can build product around that problem.
Qasim Virjee 17:38
Yeah. Take it to engineering. Yeah, it's product, but it took it took
Dan Park 17:41
a while. It took a while. But I think that's the right answer. Because so often, I think this is a mistake a lot of startups make. They just, you know, they just build product for the sake of it. Right. So yeah, the initial the initial product version of Uber was you know, ads that said Call this number and we'll get you a car right?
Qasim Virjee 18:01
There's no app. Limo Service is basically
Dan Park 18:04
limo service on demand. And so there's someone on the picked up the phone be like, okay, you know, pick up Jim on this corner at two o'clock, please.
Qasim Virjee 18:11
Gypsy cab. So yeah, Harlem. Gypsy cab. Yeah, there you go. They cruise by some some weird hand stuff. And then they take it downtown. Yeah, yeah. So will you survive?
Dan Park 18:27
So yeah, I think that that was definitely learning that applies. That applied to my work, certainly a clutch. But also, you know, as I am still investing in startups, but I look at startups with a different lens as well.
Qasim Virjee 18:40
And you were at Ober for how long? Just over three years. Wow. Yeah. So at what point was it that you were like, Okay, I need to do something different, or I want to move on? Yeah, it
Dan Park 18:50
was, I probably had another year or two left. I felt like we we accomplished a ton. We we launched all this. I think we launched something like 100 different cities in Canada or 100 different markets in Canada, like all of them are all the markets, like every single markets. We sign all the biggest kind of franchise, restaurant operators, locations. And so there was a few other things that I wanted to achieve. But actually, someone that I had met in my VC days reached out to me and said, Hey, look, there's this early stage business around cars, you're delivering food. You should deliver cars. I'm like, wow, I don't know if that's the same things a little different, you know, not as frequent. But there are probably more similarities than you think. But he approached me and said, Hey, look, there's this business. They need some leadership. They've launched one market precede at the time.
Qasim Virjee 19:46
Such existed existed. Yeah, no,
Dan Park 19:49
no, no. I so I joined up I teamed up with Steve Seibel, who is the founder. He started about 18 months, two years before I joined. And I think we share the same vision And around building a consumer retail business around what we think is the second largest consumer category that exists right in Canada. To me, it seemed insane that in order to go buy a car, you'd have to go to a local dealership. Yep. And spend five to six hours on a Saturday, if you have kids, drag them along and have them running around, and you don't get to focus, negotiate and have like, you know, people being like, you gotta buy this thing. You know, it's this protection package. That's that was the I mean, that's the how I bought cars in the past, right? Or you meet some stranger in a Tim Hortons parking lot. Exactly. You hand over a wad of cash? And then you know, and then you go for a ride with them. And hope that goes, okay. Right. So those are the two those are literally the only two options are, were the only two options that existed. That exists in Canada, whereas in the US, there's companies like Carmax, and Carvana, and AutoNation, there's a bunch of brands, some that are more regional, that you know, have multiple locations that have a consistent customer experience, have a standard for cars, that when something or if something goes wrong, you can go back and be like, hey, look, this didn't meet the standard. And you can have that discussion with whoever you're talking to. That didn't exist, and we felt like that needed to exist in Canada. It's one of the biggest purchases you'll make as an individual and the options that you have didn't feel very 2020 While at the time 2019 They certainly don't feel very 2023 anymore, either. So 2019
Car sales and marketplace growth during pandemic.
Qasim Virjee 21:27
This is the year before the great pandemic. Yeah. Where was the company when you joined in terms of like their operations? What were what were they doing?
Dan Park 21:36
Yeah, so we were we were in one market in Halifax because Halifax was the only Well, so what? Halifax So, Steve, we couldn't get a license in Ontario. So a business license, motor vehicle license to sell cars. So, so car dealerships are a regulated industry, who would have thought and regulated in Ontario by a body called avec Ontario motor vehicle industry council, Alberta. There's AMVIC there's everyone. Every different province has a different regulatory body. Nova Scotia actually has one of the loosest regulations around car sales. And so we were able to get dealer license pretty quickly there. Okay. And it was the, it was Steve was like, okay, never been to Halifax before his life. Yeah, look for a direct flight to the closest market that had the easiest access to dealer license. And he launched the market.
Qasim Virjee 22:34
Did he buy a dealership or a fresh license, fresh license, like went lined up somewhere, put down five bucks and gotta like auto license
Dan Park 22:43
effectively, and then got some cars, built the website and started selling cars online.
Qasim Virjee 22:49
So it was a virtual dealership? Yeah, yeah.
Dan Park 22:52
I mean, we don't like using the word dealership. Because dealership, by definition has no relationship with an OEM and suggest there's a middle person, right? We are a two sided marketplace for used car sales. Okay, so
Qasim Virjee 23:05
let's talk about what happened from Halifax to you joining and then the pandemic. Yeah, so
Dan Park 23:15
we probably have We have since that year, we have 25 extra revenue. So it's been pretty exponential growth.
Qasim Virjee 23:27
And in terms of territories, and like, yeah, so here's
Dan Park 23:29
the here's the story. So we laid out. So we, so we, I joined in 2019. And one of the first things I said is we can't launch Toronto, right? We can't, we can't we got to figure out how to launch Toronto, we can't be a VC backed Skylee scaled company without launching in Canada's biggest market. And so spent a lot of time with regulators. This kind of goes back to some of the Uber days around, you know, some of the regulatory overhang that you had to overcome. And we eventually got a license. It was not without some challenges, but we eventually got a license and we started launching, we'd launched and we started selling cars and then raised a seed round in March, after we had secured the license March 2020 20. Right, we closed literally days before the pandemic really exploded. Yeah. Janet banister at real ventures. And
Qasim Virjee 24:28
for our listeners, this is the lady who founded Kijiji, yes, she
Dan Park 24:33
found Judy saw the opportunity Oh, yeah. For
Qasim Virjee 24:35
our listener story. A lot of people listen to our show and watch it from out of Canada. So Kijiji is our largest like yeah, eBay bought it. You bought it? Yeah. And it's essentially like a classified ads list eBay. Yeah, the online classified ads in Canada, UK. So tell me Jana Bannister. Sorry, what
Dan Park 24:53
took a bat and was like, hey, look, I saw the opportunity and auto Kijiji autos was a huge business. Yeah, it still is a huge business. Yeah, and I bought cars from Kijiji, yep. And that's a mark. That's a marketplace. That's an unmanaged marketplace. And the world was moving to manage marketplaces where consumers were asking for a higher level of trust, more validation for the product, a more seamless customer interaction, as opposed to just being connected with buyer and seller. They wanted someone a brand in between that could help them facilitate that transaction. Sure. And so pandemic happened, basically, car sales went to effectively zero. Yeah,
Qasim Virjee 25:31
and a big part of that was cars sitting on people's driveways, and they're saying, Wow, I don't need to go to work anymore. I'm paying insurance. I'll
Dan Park 25:39
never need to go to work again. Right. That's, I mean, that was the prevailing thought back then. I think, right?
Qasim Virjee 25:46
I think so. I think in 2020, a lot of people especially because, you know, we've covered this in different angles with different people on the show that the GTA, the Greater Toronto Area being so large in its physicality. We have a big commuter. In fact, half almost of the city's working force was a commuter traffic. Yeah. Yeah. So 3 million people weren't coming into the city every day. Right. And the people that were in the city, the three other 3 million were not leaving their house. Yeah. So yeah, people own cars. We're kind of like
Car buying and selling platform, Clutch.ca.
Dan Park 26:15
this anymore, right? Or no, or at least I don't need this. I'm certainly don't need to buy a new one. Yeah. Right. And so car sales went to zero. And then all of a sudden, you know, people didn't love the idea of being on public transit, right? Yeah. anymore with each other. Right? They didn't love ride sharing anymore, right? And they wanted to go, you know, up north, or go for a hike, get groceries themselves, you know that. And so people were like, We need cars, and right, and car sales took off in the fall of 2020. Really? Oh, wow. So that soon I would it was very quick. So we really only had like three months of I would say real uncertainty, and then it went crazy. And then we raised a $20 million Series A round within a couple of months from a local fund or from a US based funding came in partners. Okay. And at that point, we had probably, we doubled in terms of staff internal in terms of revenue, in terms of revenue. So we were were
Qasim Virjee 27:19
you finding your cars? I should ask that. I didn't ask that. Yeah. Where that
Dan Park 27:23
initial model to scale was to buy through auctions, right. And that's how you, it was actually a very efficient way to scale because buying particularly without a brand or any real process, it was really hard to buy one off cars from individual consumers. Yeah, so time consuming, and expensive. Exactly. And so now, so back, then we would go to auctions, we buy 4050 cars at a time, right?
Qasim Virjee 27:42
These are like x fleet from rental company, we'd
Dan Park 27:44
at least seizure Well, there are fewer those is mostly X fleet from rental companies. It was also a lot of dealerships that don't want that he can't move the product. Well, it's you know, they're Mercedes dealerships, and they have a Toyota Camry, right? And so it just doesn't fit their business. And so there's a lot of auction cars. And so that's where we get them what sort of Supply today we actually acquire almost no, none, I'd say none of our cars from auctions. And so we built a full, fully two sided marketplace where we acquire all of our cars from individual consumers.
Qasim Virjee 28:18
Okay, so people now discover you to be able to list their car directly.
Dan Park 28:22
So know thyself, we're basically make the market, right. So we give, so we built a lot of technology. And effectively each make model. Trim has its own machine learning model where we just a bunch of data, and we real time price cars, so that we can provide an instant cash offer to the consumer or the user. And so if you go online, and go to our website, you could put in your vehicle details, it's just your VIN and some mileage information or add some 10 questions and will spit out an instant cash offer for your car. I like it. And because we're at scale, you know, we don't need to ask for photos. We don't need to do this. And we don't need to, you know, we we've we've fine tuned our models so that we on average, have a small but I would say healthy margin for this business. And we can pay more than dealerships because of our scale. And
Qasim Virjee 29:16
okay, so let's just go down this road, we'll come back to kind of pandemic and history but so current state, I want to sell my car and put in my VIN number to the website and through our LS clutch.ca clutched us Yeah. So I put in the VIN number and it says blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And then it spits out a price price and cost them here's 40,000 bucks. Yep. And I'm like, Cool. How do I receive the money so you give me the car?
Dan Park 29:42
Schedule a drop off or pickup? Yeah. And within two to three business days, you have funds directly deposited your business or your bank transfer
Qasim Virjee 29:51
Done. Easy. Yep. Wow, that's fantastic. But now what are the what's the small print?
Dan Park 29:57
There's no small print What are what is the what is your perceived small print?
Qasim Virjee 30:03
In terms of condition of car and stuff? Like if I give you a dead body in the back of my car? Yeah. So will you take that on? So they dispose of it? For me, there's
Dan Park 30:10
a few. There's about 10 or 12 questions that you out there that are asked. Yeah, I think the, the most interesting one is modification. So a lot of people when they put a, you know, a huge spoiler on the back, or, you know, they monitor a car. Yeah. And they're like, I put this money into the car, oh, this is like higher value. And you're like, No, no, actually, it's not, it's actually modification that are correct, we reduce the value of the car. And so there's situations like that, but as long as consumers are honest about the condition of their vehicle, the mileage they disclose, like we do an accident check. If they disclose the accident, they will get 100% get the value that they but, you know, sometimes the occasional customer comes in and says vehicles in excellent condition. And then like the doors bashed in, and you're like, well, that's not excellent. But well, that just happened when I was on the way here. Yeah, well, but I would say 99% of consumers are very honest about the condition of their vehicle, because otherwise, you know, they upon drop off, we're seeing the car.
Qasim Virjee 31:12
And what are the I guess what age range of car and I guess rarity, like you're looking for cars that can move? So it's good. Yeah.
Dan Park 31:21
So we'll buy everything. But only about 40% of our cars that we buy meet our retail standard.
Qasim Virjee 31:27
That's interesting. So what do you do with the cars that you buy? That's when they go to auction? Ah, very interesting. And that does that include, like vintage and rare? And like McLaren? Yeah, we
Dan Park 31:37
got fewer of those. But in theory, yes. Because I have an old Porsche. Possibly. Yeah, we're probably not the right. Okay. I mean, there's Yes. But, you know, for the average vehicle. Yeah, that makes a ton of sense. Okay. Yeah.
Startup growth, funding, and market conditions
Qasim Virjee 31:54
Okay, let's rewind a little bit. Yeah. Okay, come back to 2022 into 21. Yeah,
Dan Park 31:59
into 21. And then I think then, that was the height of our well use, but also just tech generally, right? That was the height of all tech, late 2021, early 2022 was when things were, frankly, as hot as I've seen them
Qasim Virjee 32:18
in terms of willingness for VCs to invest, invest Exactly. Right.
Dan Park 32:21
You know, for our series B round, I think we've got six or seven term sheets and at valuations that were, you know, astronomical. And that wasn't just us. I think that was happening. It was all there was, you know, there were SAS businesses with a million dollars of revenue and being funded at $250 million valuation. Right. You know, like, Okay, right. And so there was just a lot of euphoria, then, I think it took me three weeks to close my series B, that's
Qasim Virjee 32:50
short. For Series B, how big 75
Dan Park 32:53
million. That's in equity, and equity. Yeah. So we did a $75 million equity round, and then we tacked on $150 million deadline to that $250
Qasim Virjee 33:01
million deadline. Yeah. But your largest costs were product acquisition. Right. And
Dan Park 33:08
so that's what we use debt to fund. Right. So we use basically, it's working capital inventory financing, to fund the inventory. And so that was that was crazy. And I remember, my head of finance was like, Oh, this is, this is fun. And I'm like, Well, this is this is not gonna last. And so I think we stayed we didn't take the highest valuation. So I'm grateful for that. And we stayed disciplined, and, and pretty humble about, you know, the fact that keep that cash in the bank. Yeah, well, we did as well as we could, but at the same time, there was this immense pressure to grow from from VCs. Right. And so we had grown. So for future rounds, while just generally growth I mean, growth is what drives returns for VCs, right? And so, you know, the the first board meeting said, here's all this cash, let's go grow as fast as you possibly can. There's another 100 million dollars waiting behind us this right. And so just go and we had a competitor. You know, we were launching in our markets, we were raising money, they were launching markets, they were raising money, and there was this like race, and it was very, very reminiscent of my Uber Eats, skip the dishes are back in growth at all, at all costs. You know, at one point we were, we're burning, you know, a lot of money every time we sent out a trip at Uber Eats. And so, you know, there was some of the similarities. And so we had we had constraints, we said, Okay, well, let's grow as fast as we possibly can. But the constraints are never, we never lose money on a car, right? So losing money as a company generally because of the op X but never lose money on the unit, right? And then keep customer experience. So we use NPS to measure our customer experience and keep that above 80. And so those were the two constraints, but other than that, let's grow as fast as we can. And then within three months Once, right? Everything started to collapse, our biggest comp in the US their stock price declined by 90%.
Qasim Virjee 35:10
But that's a stock market thing, or is that demand tanks? No, that's
Dan Park 35:14
that was a marketing, right? That was raid starting to increase, right? And VCs feeling super, super uncertain about where the next round was going to come from. Right? So you're not profitable, great, I can find this round. But public markets are shutting down.
Qasim Virjee 35:28
So that's that, right? This is the thing that startup people don't quite get is this. Like, once you're pumped a lot of capital as a company, you really only have kind of two main paths down the road, you're either going public to raise capital from the public market to fuel the growth trajectory that you're on. Yep. Or you're looking for a merger and acquisition. Yep. So we're gonna get profitable. Yeah. which never happens for like, if you raise hundreds and hundreds of millions, it's really tough to do that quickly. Yeah. So that's kind of a scary position to be in.
Dan Park 36:02
It's terrifying. Yeah, no, I'm actually genuinely nervous for 2024. Because so many companies, particularly around software raised a lot of money in 2021. Right, and now you've done everything you can or in terms of you've done, probably some degree of headcount reduction, you've tried to increase prices. But if you're still burning, right, you need to go raise another round. And a lot of companies that raise in 2021, will start facing cash out in 2024. And so we'll see where this whole startup ecosystem lands in the next, I would say, 12 to 24 months, but I think there's still some working out to happen.
Qasim Virjee 36:41
So how does clutch relate to foreign markets? And do you see other territories outside of Canada, as opportunistic for the company,
Dan Park 36:51
I would say not in the medium term, the business and the reason why this is very much a localized business, in a lot of different markets. And so there's been multiple companies across the world that have been successful in their individual markets. I truly believe this is a winner take most market. And so there's an incredible amount of infrastructure you need to build. And so we're fully builded, vertically integrated, we've got, you know, a facility where we process each one of these cars, right, so we bring them in, we inspect them, these are clutch mechanics, and inspect these cars, we recondition them, we put new brakes, we put new tires, we put new filters in, we change fluids, anything cosmetic, they go through the photo process, they get listed on our website, and then they get inspected again, safety before going out to the consumer. And so there's a there's a fully vertically, and then we have our own trucks and logistics, because you have to pick up and drop off. And unlike, you know, a lot of other ecommerce companies that sell shoes, ISS or watches or shirts, we can't put our item in the UPS or FedEx box, right?
Used car market in Canada, transparency, and consumer education.
Qasim Virjee 37:55
Or loaded onto a trailer for a guy who's like charging by the hour, if he's gonna care,
Dan Park 38:00
or Yeah, and that's probably and that's one of the other issues is the logistics in the space are very inconsistent, because until recently, there hasn't been this need for this consumer expectation where if I asked for something, I want it now, you know, oftentimes when we try to ship a car, and we're not using our own logistics, it's like, well, we'll get at some time in March.
Qasim Virjee 38:20
Yeah, well, like I was at the dealer with with one of my cars because it was winter last winter, and the heating thing wasn't working. And it was fogging up. And I'm like driving to the dealer rather than going to my guys in Oakville that go to that race, Porsche. So they know how to fix it really well. And they charge me an honest price, and I'm going to the dealer to get to the dealer. And firstly, it takes me three hours to just get an appointment with a guy who's going to do an intake form. I'm like, I could have done that online. Secondly, he was very nice guy. And all the staff were very friendly and helpful. But there were limitations to how they could help me right. And, and anyway, he starts talking and then and I dropped the car off. It takes like five days to fix this very simple thing. And I was asking him, you know about the new stock because he was like, Look, are you interested in selling this car? Because we have a lot of interested buyers for used Porsches. And when I went to pick it up, in fact, he said there was one person who made an offer on my car, and I'm like, No, I don't want to sell it. And he's like, that's smart. That's smart, because it's gonna take about 18 months to get a new one. And that's why people are like, yeah, yeah. And they're going to the dealer first because they're looking for that authenticity, or at least the the, what they assume is the kind of seal of approval that like if you're buying a used car from the dealer, it's going to be as good as a new one. Yeah, maybe not. But yeah. But that's that's a huge lag time. Yeah,
Dan Park 39:43
yeah, no, it's I mean, that's for a while. That's why new Tesla's were actually old. Those are used Tesla's were actually trading at a higher price than new Tesla's because it was, you know, 686 to 12 months to get a new Tesla. And so you see all these market dynamics, and I think until, you know, we're trying To provide transparency around these prices, because there's, I think this is a market where people have very little sense of how much that asset is worth.
Qasim Virjee 40:08
Absolutely, people have I own next to no set know exactly right next to no sense.
Dan Park 40:14
And because of the way that financing and the depreciation works, right, you know, you can be oftentimes underwater on your, on your car and negative equity in your vehicle. And so I think, from a financial perspective, and to provide that financial education to consumers, knowing the value of that car is super important. And so we're, we're trying to provide that to consumers. And give them a way to, you know, frankly, liquidate that asset, the way we think about this is, in some ways, like a little bit of a hedge fund, right, where we've got assets that we're buying and selling, right, and we want to find great assets, because the better the asset, the more the customer customer will want to buy that asset, right. And we provide that value added. So we, every car we sell comes with a 10 day money back guarantee, and a 90 day complimentary warranty, because we've taken that car, we've inspected it, we've certified it, we've reconditioned it, and we can guarantee you, that car is going to be in the condition that we think it's going to be in, because we've taken possession of that car. Well, whereas if you met some random person on one of the marketplace listing sites, and you try to go and like, you know, meet them in a, you know, on the way home, you know, that's, that's on you, right. And so that's the that's the trust and the level of experience, we're trying to provide a consumer that we think is missing in the Canadian market. And the ultimate goal is to build a brand. And so we've done things like we're the official used car retailer of the NBA, I saw that so that's fun, right? And then the clutch, clutch brand goes well with the clutch shots. And so there's a lot of work we're doing around that. But you know, we're trying to build a brand of a consumer brand around use car retail.
Qasim Virjee 41:53
And it's interesting, because there's also I would assume a whole new age set of buyers, again, like talking about the people are growing up with Uber. Yep, there may be people not. But yeah, growing up with clutch and the question of the on demand economy being preferable to figuring out how to go to Uncle Jim's used car dealer. Yeah,
Dan Park 42:13
I mean, my favorite thing is going to bed in the wake up in the morning and seeing that we've sold a bunch
Qasim Virjee 42:18
of cars. I love it. I love I love the virtuality of the transactions, right? Because
Dan Park 42:22
that's, I mean, you could never have done that in the past. And it speaks to also consumer behavior around hey, look like I want to be in front of my couch, I want to be able to look at the car. It's I mean, I think we've done a great job with photos and being very transparent around the condition of the car, we call them hotspots. And so anytime there is an imperfection. Yeah, we will hotspot it and so you can zoom in and see exactly what that is. And so, you know, it's happiness is about expectations, meaning reality. And so as long as we can set expectations, then, you know, people are pretty happy. And then there's full vehicle history, and you can, you know, browse and buy online, just like you would if we can
Qasim Virjee 42:58
geek out on the data. Yeah. Do you think that because this is something that I personally have, as observed, as someone who grew up in Canada, then at age 11, moved away to East Africa and came back in 91? Did I come back naive from McGill. When I came back, things had changed, and especially Post University that there was an appetite for leasing. When I was a kid, no one leased their car. Right? Right. They could either afford it, or they bought used. Yep. And still would have secondary financing probably right. Yep. So how does leasing play into both the priming have the appetite to transact virtually buy online? And then also to, you know, buy and sell cars?
Dan Park 43:44
Yeah, I mean, leasing is a great option for new for people that want new, it's an option. My hypothesis or my, my belief is that people lease because they just, it's easier, right? It's convenient, convenient, it's easier, they don't need to deal with that ache, right? I think leasing is good for people that know exactly how much they're driving, right? If you're driving very little or a lot, ownership makes more sense. And there's also this element of like, if you can easily transact and own a car. The reason I think one of the reasons what we believe is one of the reasons why people don't change cars that often is because it's actually quite annoying and hardware. Right? So, you know, there's, there's a world where we'd like okay, well, every year we know exactly what you drive, and it's like, hey, look like, you know, do you want to upgrade? Are you bringing a car into the shop and like actually do you don't need to return that we maybe you don't want even that car back? Here's a new car that you can you can have for an extra, I don't know $10 A month or whatever it is, right. And so there's there's, there's ways or I think there's I think what we're trying to do is make ownership a lot easier, so that it isn't as painful to flip in and out of cars. And if you want a new car every six months, super easy, huh?
Qasim Virjee 44:59
I think that's exciting. I think from the consumer standpoint, the willingness to own for the sake of it is diminishing by the minute. But the utility of a vehicle, of course, isn't. So yeah, that does commencer us is like opportunity for offering flexibility. Yeah, for sure. If people could have a car subscription, but not have that car come to them from an individual owner and come from a service. Yeah, sure. Yeah, I'm sure they would want to rotate their cars all the time and try out different things. And, ya
Car subscription services and marketing strategies.
Dan Park 45:31
know, there's like, there's a lot of these models that we can explore. I think the other thing that I think is important, just in general, in startups, generally is focus, right? Yeah, we for sure. We can do car sharing. We could do, you know, subscriptions, we could do those things in theory, but you know, we've got we've got a, we're building a product around ownership, at least today. And that's the focus and the product. We've got, you know, I think, really, really high customer satisfaction. And so that's the focus area, and that will remain that focus for at least the foreseeable future.
Qasim Virjee 46:06
So in terms of what people can buy from clutch, or is there a certain vintage that you stop
Dan Park 46:13
at? Yeah, generally nothing older than six, seven years. And then in terms of mileage usage, he wants to just under under 120k, most of the cars are under 100k. And pricing, average price anywhere between 20 and $35,000. Okay, yeah. So kind of like our best sellers are cars like Honda Civic Toyota, Corollas. CRBs. Kia souls, Kia Soul,
Qasim Virjee 46:38
with the marketing campaign?
Dan Park 46:41
Hamsters? Sorry, the hamsters. No,
Qasim Virjee 46:44
we built at the time. We forget what the catchphrase was with Kia Soul. Yeah, forget it. But it was the idea was to promote this car as like the every person car they were kind of rolling it back to like a Volkswagen approach. Yeah. And and so I created with a company. It was in partnership with flavor pill, which is interesting because now Sasha Lewis from flavor pills gone on into like, interesting advertising stuff. But this was new. This wasn't like they came to an agency. This is like we pitched them on something neat. Yeah. Basically, I, we built a Tinder. No, that's the wrong word. What was it called Tumblr, Tumblr built a Tumblr clone. Okay, the first Tumblr clone on Tumblr was just getting started. Yeah. And the idea was, it was it was paired with this kind of big ad spend across North America. And they were trying to get people to kind of like, you know, define whatever the catchphrase was, was like, What is your soul? Or what does soul mean? Yeah. And they'd post all sorts of media onto this site, and anyone will post it. So it was like, you know, crowdsource content. Yeah. And then that would that that stuff will get remixed and put on Billboard's Oh, that's cool. So yeah, good. So yeah, still around.
Car valuations, dealership models, and fintech.
Dan Park 47:58
It's still very, very, very loyal, popular following Wow. And so those, that's kind of the flavor of cars that that you'd see. But we have, you know, more unique in inventory as well. And, you know, you sometimes see, I mean, because we acquire cars from this vast population of people, yep, you get some pretty cool and unique cars as a result of that. But we've designed our algorithm to also manage inventory, right. So as you can imagine that, as Yeah,
Qasim Virjee 48:24
as demand slumps in a particular SKU, you're gonna not buy it, right, and
Dan Park 48:28
the value for the, you know, 35th Honda Civic, and our inventory is going to be less than the 34th Honda Civic and an inventory. That's
Qasim Virjee 48:38
very interesting, the fact that you have that transactional data, and it's feeding into your operation. Yeah, that's
Dan Park 48:44
the I think that's the tech people that people don't see. And so we spend, you know, we truly, we are truly a tech company at art, with a lot of operations to support it. But, you know, that's, that's the piece that I think is super powerful and interesting, because until now, particularly in Canada, because the datasets are different, you know, frankly, the trims and models are different in Canada. Yeah. You know, there's a bunch of regulatory stuff that, you know, makes it very difficult for, you know, other folks around the globe to actually operate in Canada. And so our, our vision and ambition is to create, you know, the biggest data set around car values as well.
Qasim Virjee 49:21
Yeah, because that's a whole nother thing. That's a bit legacy, right? How do How to dealers, or I shouldn't say dealers, it's really about car manufacturers in Canada seems like there's a mix of brands that have corporate stores, and then brands that license out the kind of dealer function, the sales function, how have any of them approached you to partner? It seems like you're operating so tired. I was like Mercedes, I'd say, can you just handle our used car division? Yeah,
Dan Park 49:53
we've had we've had a few of these discussions, and we actually do a little bit of that for some folks. without disclosing too much, but yeah, I think it'll be interesting. I think that the evolution of the dealership model will will obviously change anything like the next 10 to 15 years, I think Tesla for sure is creating a lot of disruption around the dealership model.
Qasim Virjee 50:16
How so? Because I don't know much about Tesla.
Dan Park 50:18
They're all corporate stores. Right? They
Qasim Virjee 50:20
Dan Park 50:20
there's no franchise model. And so
Qasim Virjee 50:25
because I know Mercedes, just in the last couple of years, got rid of all of their stores. They went the opposite direction in Canada.
Dan Park 50:31
Yeah. Well, I mean, there's some there's there's certainly still some that exist. It's corporate, corporate, sorry, corporate, he got rid of all their corporate stores. Yeah, fair enough. They made them all sold them to individuals to run. Yeah. But there's, then there's an element of the direct, right? Could people going online and buying the cars? Right. And so there's our dealerships, that we're going to become more of a distribution channel? Are they going to have inventory allocated? I think there's also this element of like a pandemic is accustomed people to waiting five to six months for a car. And so is there more of like a just in time model for cars, and as a result as the as the inventory that dealerships holding that is the inventory that dealerships hold, gonna be just much less than it was, in the past? Come more of a showroom. Right? Right. And so here's a sense of like, you know, you go to test the location, it's like, here's your Model S, your model Y and you know, your, your model three, you can make some tweaks to it, and you'll have deliberated couple months,
Qasim Virjee 51:28
how a rental car companies faring in this, like supply restriction, or restricted market.
Dan Park 51:37
I don't really have a strong sense, it's not really a market, we we used to be closer to the rental car market, because we buy at auction. And so a lot of the rental cars that would come off the rental car, lots would come into auction, and we'd buy them. I think more recently, the suppliers supply is now kind of I wouldn't say fully back to normal, but still at decent levels. And so I would imagine, again, this is not an area that I've spent a lot of time on, I would imagine that rental cars are still acquiring cars from directly from OEMs. There was a time when rental car companies were actually buying from auction, which is the opposite of what was happening before. But that's reversed. It's
Qasim Virjee 52:17
super interesting. There's lots of opportunity. What about on the finance side? Like I would think a vendor like you would be a preferred financial throughput for Yeah, so Asher is company isn't everyone else. So
Dan Park 52:30
half our business has fintech. Okay. And so the business model is we basically we make anywhere between about 1000 to $1,500. On the metal, right. Okay. And so that's, you know, that's dealers will actually make significantly more, and what do you mean, you make it on the metal meeting the car? Okay, so the, the spread between what we buy,
Qasim Virjee 52:50
see we sell it after metal? That's pretty. That's a cool. All
Car buying transparency and consumer brand building.
Dan Park 52:55
right. So that's, that's, that's, that's part of their business. The other part of the business is all the ancillary products that we that we provide. So financing, insurance, and warranty. And so, I think a lot of people have this misconception. And a lot of dealers, more traditional dealers will make most of their money on the financing. Right? So there's, there's, I think a lot of consumers have that misconception. It's like, I'll pay you cash, give me a discount. The reality is, actually there's no room to give them a disk. We don't, we don't want your cash, we actually want you to finance the vehicle. Right. And so that's, that's, that's a little bit of a, I would say, just popular misconception around the industry. And so I think one of the things we're trying to do is be very transparent about how we make money and where we make money. Because there's so many times where I think a lot of people come off come out of a car transaction and say, Oh, wow, like we, I had a great deal. Well, maybe you didn't, because you actually got really screwed on your trade in value. Or, you know, you're in a, you haven't, you didn't do the math, and actually, you're paying an interest rate that's much higher than you actually should be paying, right? You might get the car at the price, you want it but you're actually paying more interest or, you know, you bought a bunch of products that you may or may not need, right. So there's a lot of ways for you to for, you know, traditional dealers to triangulate around where you're going to extract your dollar from the consumer. And, and
Qasim Virjee 54:20
there's a lot of you know, like this another thing you mentioned that there isn't much transparency or historically hasn't been right. And many things like to do with the valuation of cars, and even in the traditional kind of resale market. Yeah. That's formalized. So dealers or, you know, these places by the side of the road all over the place. Yeah, you know, jumbies, flying and air and, and all these for sale signs and discount and all that stuff. There's a lot of shysters in that market. Yeah, because there's a lot of very sketchy secondary finance outfits and even mafia money in that industry, from what I've seen.
Dan Park 54:57
Yeah, there's, I mean, there's certainly subs set of, you know, professional upstanding individuals, but there's also it's, it's fraught with, you know, folks that are, you know, probably less so. And you see a lot of that behavior. And it's frankly, it's, that's one of the reasons why we started. And we're building clutches to provide that transparency. And, you know, because we have fixed pricing, right, you go on our website, the price is the price, the price is the same for you is, is for the next person as for the next person, and because we believe that just because you're better at negotiating, or just you know, you have more time or you have more patience for it, or you are more savvy, you should be getting a better price, right? Like what, in what there's so few things in the world that actually operate like that, by gamify, all this stuff, just keep it simple. So here's the price, you know, here's the value of your trade in, here's the financing you get. And here's the price for these warranties, like we're trying to be as transparent as possible. Because there's too much opportunity right now, I think, to decouple a lot of these things, and, or a couple a lot of these things together and kind of like wave your hand over here and be like, Hey, this is all good. But actually, on the other side, you're like, Well, this is not you're not actually getting a great deal. And so again, I think, what, what the only thing consumers can ask for is transparency, right? And say, hey, look like where are these fees coming from? What are you charging for? What is the price? You know, what are these things that I'm getting? We provide a inspection report for the cars of what's been done to the car. Here's the Carfax. So here's the complete vehicle history. So you've got all the data and all the details. So you can walk away feeling pretty confident about the transaction? So
Qasim Virjee 56:35
from early career and finance, yeah, right. A little bit of like, m&a and that kind of stuff. Banking stuff. Yep. into looking at transport, in different ways, yep. Uber, to now becoming kind of an entrepreneur by invitation to run this company that combines these two things. Where do you see your own interests lying these days? Obviously, within your product mix and your service and the running of the company, but like, how has your vision of like, you know, or your perspective on on transport, and the industry and even your own career kind of like changed? Is it fair to ask, I know, when you're in the thick of a company, it's like, all you live and breathe? Yeah, I
Dan Park 57:24
think, like, I love what I'm doing. I think the building part is super fun. And we talked about this before, or the show, the building is really fun. And personally, I get a lot of satisfaction about building a consumer brand. Because you see it, we call it in the wild, right?
Qasim Virjee 57:44
Yeah. And while it's nice to be behind a car and see a clutch, we'll go on it. Yeah.
Dan Park 57:48
And we actually like, you know, we have a pretty healthy Slack channel that every time someone sees something like, oh, he doesn't want in the wild, this is the one that we you know, and so they, they, I think the team gets a kick out of it. And also, you know, seeing our, our partnerships with with the NBA and things like that are also really cool in terms of building a consumer brand. So I really like that. And I think that's something that's carried over from actually my time at Uber. And then teams, I think that, you know, we couldn't be doing and we couldn't be where we are with the people without the people. And I've always been back into, you know, student government and, you know, leading leading teams, so full circle, I've really loved leading teams and, and, you know, I think combining building consumer brand with building people's careers is something that I get a lot of satisfaction about. When I think about my time at Uber that the, the number of I think there's been at least, you know, three or four, if not more, probably like five or six folks from my kind of like Uber class, Canada that have gone on to either start companies or be CEOs of companies. And I think that's a result of having built and scaled, you know, multibillion dollar business. And my hope, and my aspiration is that if in 10 years from now, or five years from now, the folks that we have on the team can go off and do their own thing or have their resumes and their career prospects improved. As a result of having had the experience of building something that a lot of Canadians recognize. That to me is like, that's, that's my life's work. And that's, that's if this is the only thing I do then. That's fantastic.
Qasim Virjee 59:34
I love it. Yeah. Nice, man. Yeah, I think that's great. Thanks for joining me and see ya. Thanks for having me. This was fun. Cool.