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Suprasanna Mishra and Dustin Studer of Capstory

How did you start your business?
Because we were solving a problem we were experiencing ourselves, we just started wireframing and listing how we wanted the site to operate.

After much feedback from friends and others in our target market, we came to a point at which we could start building a promising minimum viable product, and we secured an Imagining Grant from CincyTech that helped finalize the MVP.

When we completed that on time and on budget, we were able to go to CincyTech and raise a round of capital to help us improve Capstory and start gaining users.
How did you come up the idea for your business?
Last spring, my roommate and I took a spontaneous trip to California and stayed with a friend. We needed a break from Ohio weather (you know how that goes).

We arrived with no plans but ended up having a great time, meeting a lot of new people and making some awesome memories. When we had to leave, we realized there were events and quotes that we’d soon forget and hundreds of pictures from the weekend scattered throughout people’s cell phones.

We started working on the idea of allowing a select group of friends to keep all of their photos and stories safe in one place.
What resources here did you take advantage of and how did they help?
It was extremely helpful having CincyTech supporting us along the way. We received great mentorship and funding from them, both of which helped us move our business along much faster than we would have been able to otherwise.

We also got a lot of random assistance from other entrepreneurs in the area who had been through the same issues we faced and were happy to provide feedback.
What would you do differently if you started your business again?
It’s always difficult to put down a line in the ground and say, “This is the day we release.”

There are always more features, ideas and plans in the pipeline. We likely would have started testing things with real users earlier in the process rather than later. It’s always better to get real world feedback rather than guess at the success of a feature.
What’s next for you and your company?
Capstory will be focusing on getting the word out, gaining users and encouraging interaction on the site.

We currently have some exciting new features in the works that we can’t wait to offer to the public and will be looking for additional funding to further develop our product and design.

Interview by Robin Donovan

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