Duffl and Snag Delivery serves the Isla Vista community

People living in Isla Vista during the winter and spring quarters of 2021 may have seen a quiet rivalry brewing between Snag and Duffl: two delivery services that both provide a range of groceries and boast fast deliveries of ten minutes or less via electric scooters.

The goal of these two delivery services is to provide a fast, efficient and sustainable method of shopping for groceries via electric scooter delivery. Daily Nexus File Photo

Duffl, which uses an orange and white color scheme, was created by David Lin, a 3rd year philosophy major from UC Los Angeles in 2018. Snag, who is pictured as a red and white backpack, was created by Jacob Duijser, third year major in economics and accounting from UCSB. and Mason Cohen in third year of economics.

The goal of both of these delivery services is to provide a fast, efficient and sustainable method of shopping for groceries. Customers just have to order their groceries from their phone, and Snag or Duffl will take care of the rest.

Duffl was established by Lin in 2018 and now serves several other college campuses. Lin was inspired to start the business after seeing a shipment of Bird electric scooters dropped off near his campus for transportation.

“When I moved to the United States. for college I was going to study economics, but I turned to philosophy and had an existential crisis, ”said Lin. “Then I see all these scooters zooming in and I put two and two together to start delivering. ”

After being repeatedly rejected from the UCLA Startup Accelerator Program UCLA – a group that funds start-up companies – Lin and his co-founder Brian Le applied and were accepted into the Y Combinator, a program of national accelerator that has funded companies like DoorDash, Airbnb and Instacart.

“We knew this opportunity was life changing,” Lin said. “Then we moved to Silicon Valley for three months, worked with an eight-person product team, and raised $ 1.3 million. ”

Now Lin expects to grow ten times that number soon, in part due to the company’s recent expansion to other college towns like Isla Vista. To ensure the success of each Duffl store, the owners created a system for each store to be run by a student from the nearby school.

“I think what makes us unique is our identity by supporting every branch and making sure every school is local,” Lin said. “That it is run by people from this school and that it is unique to this school. ”

Lin pointed out that not only is this new way of shopping convenient for the customer, but less trips to the grocery store make the business model more environmentally friendly.

“If you have 1,000 people in an area making 1,000 trips to the grocery store, is that really effective? Lin asked. “With this new shopping method, you don’t waste food, waste time and save millions of tons of carbon emissions.”

Like Duffl, Snag was created by UC undergraduates who envisioned a more efficient and sustainable delivery service. In October 2020, Duijser and Cohen conceptualized Snag after frustrations with long wait times and expensive delivery fees from other platforms used by UCSB students, like Uber Eats or DoorDash.

“We have DoorDash and Grubhub, but they were taking way too long and were way too expensive,” Dujiser said. “We just thought there had to be something better out there.”

After some experimentation, Duijser and Cohen finally created the Snag app, headquartered in the center of Isla Vista. Snag officially started its services at the end of January 2021 and has seen rapid customer growth since then.

“We certainly had high expectations for ourselves, but I’m not sure if we expected such growth so quickly,” Mason said. “It’s almost like a dream to wake up every day and see all these people so excited about something we’ve created.”

Snag has also been involved in the Isla Vista community by partnering with local foundations and organizations such as Isla Vista SurfRider.

“We really want everyone to participate in Snag,” said Dujiser. “The more people we involve, the better the business gets. ”

The major success of the two companies makes Cohen and Duijser enthusiastic about their customers and the future of the grocery store.

“The people of Isla Vista have access to two services right now that no other school really has,” Cohen said.

“At the end of the day, the big winner here is the customers who really live in the future,” Duijser added.

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