Bobby Brannigan is co-founder & CEO of Mercato, an online marketplace for independent grocery stores, which enables local grocery delivery and helps them compete with larger chains in the industry.
Bobby is no stranger to entrepreneurship. The serial entrepreneur started his first business in his college dorm in upstate New York. It was a college textbook marketplace that competed directly with Amazon, beginning in 2001. 18 months in, the startup had garnered $100M revenue with no external funding, and was eventually acquired. During this venture, Bobby began collecting feedback from bookstores and realizing they preferred to sell their books on Amazon but desired a reverse marketplace where they could repurchase books from students. Thus, Bucks4Books was born.
In 2008, after working out of Buffalo, NY for some time, Bobby, along with seven of his Bucks4Books team members, made the move to sunny San Diego. After their big move, the team grew sales from $7 million to $18 million in a few years, all bootstrapped.
After selling the startup, Bobby took some time to plan his next move and ended up investing in about 20 companies. Soon after, Bobby decided to help his father’s independent grocery store by building software to help him appeal to tech-savvy consumers. In building the tool, he realized there was a big market for it, and so, Mercato was born in 2015.
Mercato strives to enable the nation’s independent grocers with technology in order to remain competitive.
Listen in to hear about Bobby’s journey as a serial entrepreneur and the lessons he learned along the way. Also get the scoop on his favorite local taco spot.
Thanks to our partners at Cox Business for their support in enabling us to grow the San Diego ecosystem.
Bobby’s favorite local tacos:
Eggplant parmesan tacos & tofu tacos at Not Not Tacos in Little Italy
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