Fall Down Seven Times, Get Up Eight
Failure is not the end of everything; rather, it is a redirection and the beginning of a new idea.
Meet our modern-day Thomas Edison, who failed 20 times but got up and took the world by storm with his brilliant Online Grocery Business, Apoorva Mehta.
Early Beginning of Apoorva Mehta
In 1986, Apoorva Mehta was born in a country known for its ancient history, diverse landscapes, and diverse cultures, India. However, the Mehta family has to transfer to Libya after Apoorva’s birth.
At age 14, Apoorva Mehta moved to Canada with his family and attended the University of Waterloo for his undergraduate studies in engineering.
Apoorva Mehta’s Education and Early Career
Apoorva Mehta completed his electrical engineering from the University of Waterloo in 2018. Following this, Apoorva got a job as a design engineer with Blackberry and Qualcomm. Mehta also worked at a steel factory for a brief period, then moved to Seattle and joined Amazon as a supply chain engineer.
Apoorva Mehta realized that working in a corporate environment minimized his learning opportunities. Apoorva discovered his passion for software development and challenges while working as a supply chain engineer. However, he decided in 2010 to leave Amazon.
As a result, Apoorva moved on to developing start-up ideas. Apoorva moved to San Francisco, where he applied his newfound knowledge for two years.
First Ventures of Apoorva Mehta
From 2010 to 2012, he started trying his hand at entrepreneurship. Apoorva Mehta developed concepts, such as Groupon for food, and launched many start-ups, but they failed to succeed.
One example was Apoorva's plan to build an advertising network for social gaming companies. In addition, he developed a social network specifically for lawyers called LegalReach.
Apoorva and his partner only realized the site was useless later in the research and development process. It was soon necessary to shut down the portal. As a result, Apoorva parted ways with his partner.
In the same way, his other 20 start-ups failed.
Everyone knows that when you are in San Francisco, you should have a car, and Apoorva did not own one.
He loved to cook but needed a decent grocery shop near his residence. There were few selections among the online food stores that were offered.
This situation was advantageous because it inspired Apoorva to evaluate opportunities in the online grocery business.
Apoorva began working on establishing a delivery platform for on-demand food supply. Within a month, he created an application that allowed users to order groceries online.
Furthermore, he developed an application for customers who shop in-store.
The application was tested for the first time by Apoorva, who was the application's first user. He placed an order through the app, went to the store, and delivered the groceries himself because he didn't have any shoppers then.
Sharing the same vision as Stanley Tang and Yousef Abuzuaiter as a result of keeping the on-demand delivery concept in mind, Apoorva named the start-up “Instacart.” He co-founded it with Max Mullen and Brandon Leonardo in 2012.
What Came Before Him
There were some issues encountered during the expansion of Instacart. No good business comes in a silver plate.
In 2015, Apoorva encountered a class action lawsuit. The workers who delivered the groceries and went grocery shopping were incorrectly labelled as independent contractors, claims the lawsuit. Apoorva made the decision to hire part-time Instacart customers as a result.
Additionally, he provided them with advantages like health insurance.
The failure of Webvan, a failed online grocery start-up, gave Apoorva a lot of insight into setting up an online grocery business. Due to Webvan's collapse, investors were not interested in investing in such start-ups.
It was fortunate that the Webvan catastrophe had already taken place. Because of this, Apoorva had no problem finding technical developers and investors for Instacart.
Two years after leaving Amazon, Apoorva launched Instacart. Currently, this San Francisco-based company contains more than a thousand shoppers and has more than two hundred workers.
Latest News of Instacart
In the same year, he planned to apply for funding through Y Combinator but missed the deadline. Since its launch in San Francisco, Instacart has expanded to more than 30,000 stores and 5,500 cities in North America.
Kroger, Albertsons, Publix, and Sam's Club are among its partners. You can select groceries and order them online with Instacart. Suppliers and shoppers pack and deliver grocery orders to customers' homes.
Over 70% of Canadian households and 85% of US households have access to on-demand delivery services.
Instacart reports that order volume has increased 500% in the past year, and customers spend up to 35% more on groceries.
A billionaire at 33, Apoorva owned 10% of his company by 2020. Instacart was valued at $39 billion in 2021.
Who is Fidji Simo?
Apoorva Mehta’s Accomplishments
Apoorva Mehta established a successful business after 20 failed attempts–fall 20 times, get up 21!
Instacart is now one of the largest internet-based grocery delivery service providers and, in 2020, became a billionaire at 33.
It is not a wonder that Apoorva Mehta is getting attention for his accomplishments:
- Forbes named him one of the 30 Under 30 in 2013.
- Forbes honored Instacart as the Most Promising Company in America in January 2015.
- Included in the list of America's Richest Entrepreneurs Under 40 in 2016.
- Forbes again named him one of the 30 Under 30 – All-Star Alumni list in 2017.
- Time100 Next included him in 2021.
- Forbes included Apoorva Mehta in the World's Billionaire List for 2022.
- Forbes also listed him for the 3rd time as one of the 30 Under 30 – Hall of Fame in 2022.
FAQs: Apoorva Mehta
- How did Instacart start?
Apoorva Mehta wanted to get decent groceries, but he didn't have any means of transportation because he did not own a car. This sparked an idea for a business.
Apoorva then began working on establishing a delivery platform for on-demand food supply. Within a month, he created an application that allowed users to order groceries online. Furthermore, he developed an application for customers who shop in-store.
- Who are the founders of Instacart?
Apoorva Mehta co-founded Instacart with Max Mullen and Brandon Leonardo in 2012.
- Who is Fidji Simo of Facebook?
Fidji Simo was the head of Facebook's app. Now, she is Instacart's new CEO.
Key Takeaway: Apoorva Mehta
It’s ok to be lost, and it’s okay to fail–what’s not okay is to give up when you fail.
Apoorva Mehta, an app developer, almost gave up on becoming an entrepreneur until he discovered what he wanted to do: solve the hassle of grocery shopping.
At the end of the day, we all have regrets. But one thing we would forever regret is giving up on the world that is continuously going forward.
Imitate and listen to Apoorva on how he tackled the challenges of entrepreneurship and how grit and passion became his driving force to success.