Startup Season 3 - 6: Kitchen Confidential

Jason and Vincent launched Bento about a year ago

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Ben Tossell
Hunter
No-coder 👉 Makerpad.co
Two men decide to start a company. Everything is going well...until it’s not. That’s the moment they decide to start recording their conversations—painful, awkward, emotional conversations. Jason and Vincent launched Bento about a year ago. Their goal was to make Pan-Asian food fresh, tasty, and on-demand. They joined the food tech swell just as it was winding down, just as the funding was drying up, just as the smaller players were being weeded out. With only a year under their belt and a quickly draining bank account, Bento’s odds don’t look good. We listen in on the co-founders as they try to decide whether their setbacks are just bumps on the road to success or a sign to shut things down.
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Jason Demant
Maker
CEO, Bento
@bentossell Thanks for sharing with PH Ben! I'm happy to answer questions.
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Kori Handy
VP of Design
@jasondemant @bentossell Great stuff Jason, really brave of you guys to record all of this, it's really hard running a real business, I feel like you're business is much different than most startups. Wish you the best.
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Jason Demant
Maker
CEO, Bento
@koridhandy Thanks for the kind words Kori!
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Ryan Hoover
Founder, Product Hunt
Looking forward to listening to this. I've used Bento a few times and know @jasondemant (met him when he worked with @jason at This Week in Startups).
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Jason Demant
Maker
CEO, Bento
@rrhoover I'm a big of fan of their podcast, so it was a lot of fun to work with their team on this. Pretty amazing process -- I don't even want to know how many hours of tape they have. Crazy amount of work to get this down to ~35 minutes.
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Ryan Hoover
Founder, Product Hunt
Just finished listening. Props to Jason and Vincent for being so transparent. Very few founders are brave enough to share these struggles, especially as they're happening.
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John Doherty
Founder, Credo (GetCredo.com)
This is such a fantastic episode, probably better than the one about Justin.tv. It's raw and real about an early startup as opposed to a retrospective. Also as a founder myself, I feel for them and their situations. Companies aren't easy, and hearing them make their tough decisions is a great view into it.
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Jason Demant
Maker
CEO, Bento
@dohertyjf Thanks for the comment John! I tried hard to record the most important conversations and moments, so the result would be as real as possible. I'm really happy to hear that resonated with you.
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John Doherty
Founder, Credo (GetCredo.com)
@jasondemant You really succeeded. I was grousing the other day on the Twitters about wanting to hear more stories like this, not just retrospectives of ones that survived. This nailed it.
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Vincent
Maker
@dohertyjf @jasondemant Thanks John, and everyone, for the kind words. There were definitely some very challenging times being recorded. I'm glad you enjoyed the end result. Molly and team did a wonderful job with I-don't-want-to-know-how-many hours of tape.
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Kilim Choi
Engineer and Entrepreneur
Thanks @jasondemant and @vcardillo for sharing a brutally honest story with us. Actually, I am a big fan of Bento. I love their food and its quick delivery service. I wish the best of luck to them on their startup journey!
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Ben BearCo-founder, workgeni.us
Jason is one of the most helpful and transparent founders I've met so far. This episode is a public service to founders who only get exposure to hyped up success and feel isolated during tough times. I'm reminded of a quite I heard recently 'don't compare your story against somebody else's highlight reel.' Thanks for posting!
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