It is a situation we have all been in: it’s Thursday night and all you want to do is curl up on the couch with a glass of red wine and watch Scandal, when you realize that you are out of wine. Minibar Delivery can save the day. The website/app lets users order beer, wine, and spirits to be delivered to their doorstep in just 30-60 minutes! No need to walk 5 blocks in the snow to get wine.
Minibar was founded by two women who have worked at major online retailers including FreshDirect and Rent the Runway. WCBC got the chance to talk to Minibar Delivery’s co-founders Lara Crystal and Lindsey Andrews about the inspiration behind the brand, the tricks to a successful business partnership, and the advice they would give someone starting their own business. Their advice is just the midweek boost we all need.
Plus, keep reading to the end of the post to learn how to get $10 off your first Minibar Delivery order!
What was the inspiration behind Minibar Delivery? How does it work? Is it available in Chicago?
We would meet every Tuesday night (aka: Takeout Tuesday) to discuss a variety of business ideas. When another friend from business school suggested alcohol delivery, we realized that would improve takeout Tuesday, and our lives, generally. When we looked at the space we realized how much opportunity there was to bring this industry online – all of this eventually evolved into Minibar — on-demand alcohol delivery.
To make the magic work, we provide a marketing and technology platform that connects consumers to their local liquor store. When a customer enters their address, Minibar connects them to one of their partners, they place an order, and the store delivers it in 30-60 minutes.
Minibar’s available in Chicago, as well as New York, San Francisco, Dallas and more to come soon.
Both of Minibar’s co-founders had successful careers before launching Minibar Delivery. Lara was the VP of Marketing at Rent the Runway, while Lindsey worked at FreshDirect, Soap.com and Wag.com. How did you know the time was right for you to go out on your own?
For both of us, we’ve always had the entrepreneurial bug, but the time was right when we found an idea that inspired us. We were lucky enough to have been at great companies and learned a lot from incredible entrepreneurs and we knew that we wanted to build something ourselves so we were thrilled when we discovered an opportunity to serve an untapped market.
Tell us a little bit about the working relationship you have. In your opinion, what are the keys to a successful long term business partnership?
We’re both very honest and we believe that communication is key in building a successful partnership. By keeping open lines of communication, we’re able to regularly ensure that we’re on the same page and understand what’s working for each of us and what needs to improve.
What advice would you give someone who wants to start their own business?
Go do it! The #1 lesson we’ve learned from our time at start-ups is that sometimes it’s better to just get something done than to get it done perfectly – when you’re creating something new, you don’t know what perfect looks like until people use it anyway.
If there is one nugget of advice that you could go back in time and give yourself 5 years ago, what would it be?
Don’t be afraid to fail. Similar to go do it, but the earlier you can conquer this fear, the better.
Besides profitability – how do you measure success?
From the beginning, we wanted to build a business for the long-term so one of the most important metrics we look at is repeat rates to see if customers are coming back – because it tells us if customers are as in love with Minibar as we want them to be!
Which entrepreneurs do look up to?
Entrepreneurs we’ve been fortunate enough to work with before Minibar have influenced us both. For Lara, Jenn Hyman & Jenny Fleiss, the co-founders of Rent the Runway where she worked for over 4 years helped teach how to build a company and a culture. For Lindsey, Marc Lore and Vinit Bharara who co-founded Quidsi and demonstrated how to build an amazing brand, culture and transition through the many phases of a start-up.
$10 OFF from MINIBAR
On-demand wine, spirits & beer delivered to your door in 30-60 minutes. Available in Chicago, NY, San Francisco, Dallas, and more. Visit our website or download our app.
Get $10 Off your 1st Minibar order – promo code: BTB2015
*Offer valid on first orders only for up to $10 off through 2/15/15. Not eligible on existing or previously placed orders. Promotional offers are non-transferable and cannot be combined. You must be 21 years old to use Minibar. Drink responsibly.