September 19, 2010
Before the TECH cocktail startup mixer at The Combine in Bloomington, I sat down to write about PathWrangler, one of the featured startups who demoed at the event, but was at a bit of a loss given the product hadn’t yet launched. I had some description from the founder, but decided to wait until I had a chance to meet and talk with him at the event before writing a post.
Finding Doug Heinz, CEO and c0-founder, was easy as he stood sentry near a monitor transitioning through some of the most colorful and stunning travel images that immediately caught my attention. There I learned more about PathWrangler, which will be geared towards guides, outfitters and other adventure travel organizers, as an essential tool to help simplify communication between themselves and their clients and organize all the logistics for everyone involved.
While professionals are a primary target and will likely be an initial path to monetization, PathWrangler will also be a useful tool for anyone trying to organize an adventure trip – even if it’s just a group of friends. For example, a few years ago, my good friends got married in Costa Rica. They did an amazing job of getting around 100 guests well prepared and organized to spend 10 days in the jungles of Mal Pais, but they also had to create a website, printed out individual packets of info and generated more than a few emails. It was an exhausting endeavor for them. Heinz says his product is made to simplify exactly that type of experience.
Based in San Francisco, Doug and co-founders Martin Breining (CTO) and Eric Remza (Product Marketing/Client Relations) received partial seed funding from Bloomington-based Sproutbox and more recently, DG Elmore, of Elmore Companies, has become lead seed-investor. The team expects to launch a private beta within a few months, which will initially focus on a few professional adventure travel organizers, and then open up to a broader audience. Neil Patel and Sproutbox co-founder Brad Wisler are advisors for the team.
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