On March 21, dog walking app Barkly Pets won the Purina Pet Care Innovation Prize, was awarded an additional $10,000 from Purina and a dedicated booth at Global Pet Expo from the American Pet Products Association which runs the Global Pet Expo. The highly-rated dog walking app was designed to simplify every day and essential pet care needs with services available to users 365 days a year in 60 minutes notice or less.
Five pet-focused startups, selected from 85 entries, pitched their businesses in Orlando to win the 2017/2018 Pet Care Innovation Prize powered by Purina. The four other finalists — AnimalBiome, BareItAll Petfoods, Fetch Labs and PupJoy — will be stationed right next to Barkly Pets at Global Pet Expo in an adjoining space, providing them with valuable visibility to the industry’s qualified buyers, retailers and investors.
Barkly Pets was selected by a panel of industry judges including Lindsay Beaton, Managing Editor of Petfood Industry magazine, Bryan Jaffe of Cascadia Capital, Gila Kurtz of Dog is Good and Bill Broun, Blair Morgan and David Narkiewicz from Purina’s 9 Square Ventures Division in a culminating event where each business was given less than 10 minutes to make a final pitch to win the grand prize.
“We are humbled to be honored as the Pet Care Innovation Prize grand prize winner. The opportunity to spend time with industry experts at Purina and our fellow finalists throughout the program gave us insight into how we can better serve our customers and the pet professionals we empower daily to care for their pets,” said Chris Gonzalez, co-founder of Barkly Pets. “We have a very high burden of trust with our customers to let us into their homes and care for their loved ones while they are away. Being named the Pet Care Innovation Prize grand prize winner is a major validation of our mission and approach to business,” Gonzalez said.