From Scratch to 29 Cities & Counting – A Journey of a Landscaping Expert

Dear Reader, following is a very interesting and informative Podcast by the Founder and CEO of the EDEN App the Lawn Care and Landscape Experts.

“What is going on everyone? Thanks for tuning in to another episode of ‘Forward Thinking Founders’. I am very grateful to have your attention at least for the next 15 minutes of this episode.
‘Forward Thinking Founders’ is a podcast where I interview a pre seed and seed stage founders about their products. What they want to build in the world and why, we dive into how they spend their time, what’s their vision with origin stories, all these things. You can learn all about what’s coming tomorrow. But these companies haven’t hit critical skill, yet, most then having that product market fit. These are just early stage companies and the big question is what can this be? And then in this podcast we bring that out! So, with that I really hope you enjoy your time with this episode.

And I’ve already done 200 plus so if you like this one, listen to some of the other ones like, with Marti Coon, Austin Audrey we have had great interviews. So, check it out. enjoy the repository for now left in today’s episode. So, here we go.”

All right, how’s it going everyone? Welcome to another episode of ‘Forward Thinking Founders’. We have talked to founders about their companies, their vision for the future, and how the 2 collided. Today, I’m very excited to be talking to you, Ben Zlotnick, who is the founder of Eden.

Welcome to the show, how’s it going?” “Great! How are you mate? Thanks for the introduction and of course inviting me to the podcast. Yeah, definitely I’m excited to have you on and learn more about what you’re working on. For people that haven’t heard of Eden and are not familiar with what work you’re doing, can you show us what is Eden and what it does? Absolutely, so, Eden is a lawn and snow application, we’ve got a mobile app as well as a web based platform. We offer everything from lawn care to landscaping and snow removal services all through a click of a button.

So if somebody wants to order grass cut or in some states and provinces if they want to get a snow removal during the winter season. A couple of clicks and they can order a service directly to their property. So, let’s start to talk about the user experiences.

Let’s say I wanted to use Eden, so can you kind of walk me through? I guess when I would want to use it and then, anything I guess I would expect, or kind of expect while using it ultimatel. So I want to give it a shot. What that experiences like.” “Absolutely, so we give customers 2 options.

The first option is a customer has the ability to order a one off jobs, let’s say for example today you notice that your grass is getting a little long and you don’t want to get out there and cut it yourself. You could download the app, enter in your property information.

You can select the size of your property and we give you a couple of options of how to get your size if you’re not sure what it is, you will see a price for the grass cut, based off of you know if it’s long, if it’s shorter, and you click a button to order the service based off of the price that you see. Then what happens is on the other side of the app, we have a contractor app. So we only work with a pre-qualified and verified contractors that are within your area, based off of the radius. They will then go ahead accept the job. Once they have accepted the job you’ll receive a notification that contractor’s on its way.

They then show up to your house, they take multiple before photos of the property. They then do the work, and then in order to close off the job they take multiple after photos which of course you receive and they close the job. And it’s very simple like that. And then, the second way of course is if somebody is looking to get their long cut whether it’s weekly or bi weekly.

They don’t want to have to go on to the app every single time, well they can go on to the website and sign up to the recurring services. And it’s the exact same thing, same process just this way you don’t actually have to be the one that’s ordering directly it’s all automated all through a couple clicks of the button along with your information.

And I’d love to get an idea here about 10 at kinda why you decided to start this. That’s in other words what’s the origin story for this company?” ”Yeah, so my background is I guess, it’s, it’s a little different around just after university I started a landscaping business up in Toronto Canada where I’m based out of. And you know, we started out small and grew it into a fairly large company up in Toronto where we do everything from lawn maintenance to landscape design construction and then of course appeared snow removal in the winter season. At the same time as an entrepreneur I’ve dabbled in multiple different businesses and, I got involved in the technology sector.

Edenapp on mobile

Not knowing too much about it around a decade or so ago, but one thing kind of led to another and eventually. I launched a technology accelerator program. Where we brought in early stage tech companies. And you know we help them, we advise them.

We invested in them and we help them scale their businesses in whole different facets and all different industries. I ran that for around 4 years, and at the end of the 4 years. I was looking at you know how do I kind of merge my worlds together; you know on the one side you got landscaping and snow removal and on the other side you’ve got technology. Of course if you look at them. 2 ends 2 opposites. And if you look at the landscaping industry.

There really has not been a lot of disruption in that space, there’s been some around software and lead generations in sales, CRM programs.

But, as far as actually getting the job done and how it’s, you know, how do you reach those customers. And that’s, really when Eden was born. It was, it was really a merger of my 2 worlds together so taking my experience in the landscaping and snow removal industry and then of course on the other side. The technology sector which I had been involved with at that point for you know almost 6-7 years. And that’s really where Eden was born out of, and we launched it in Toronto. We continued to grow across Canada and of course now, into the U. S. Congrats on that! That was a cool story. I like the convergence and congrats on the success so far.

I Alright, I’m curious if you were to zoom out and look out 5-10 years you know. For this company you know, what does Eden look like in a decade ? Use in other words what’s the big vision for Eden and what direction you are rowing in?

So, it’s a great question and of course, as a founder, you always have a vision of where you want to be but then of course and you heard this over and over it comes down to execution. Right? So within the traditional landscaping business, for the most part people stay very local to their particular area. So, they might stay either within their neighborhood.

They might expand into multiple neighborhoods or even the city that they are in. But it’s rare, besides for very large companies that they’re gonna start growing outside of the actual city that they live in or they operate in. With Eden, we have the ability through the technology that we built, to not necessarily stay local. So for example, today, we have already grown across the province of Ontario and we have also grown across 7 U. S. states.

So I’m looking at a vision as far as Eden might be in another decade or so. We believe that in the very near future, we will be able to through our technology expand across the entire U. S. and Canada and that’s really our goal. Of course there are seasonalities and of course there are different price points.

There are different types of plant material, there’s different services that are required in each region. But, as we slowly grow, or as we scale our business. We have the ability to adapt by, obviously of course working with our contractors on the ground. But at the same time continuing to build our technology which allows us to facilitate those changes. Yeah, it sounds like you’ve thought it through. It is really thoughtful way which I think, which I think is awesome. Like you said, it’s a big difference between vision and like where you see something and how to get there and it’s cool to come and see the steps on how you get there.

My question for you though is in order in order to get their like you need some help right? It takes a village for a start up and that’s why I, you know I love to ask the question, how can the ‘Forward Thinking Founders’ community help you? Are you looking for customers? Are you hiring? How do you think forward thinking founders community assist?

So that’s a. A high level question but of course, you know as a as a founder you’re always looking for you know what is that opportunity. The truth is that many times you actually don’t know. What that opportunity is until it’s right in front of your face. So you know some of the things that we do is as we move into you know.

New states we’re always looking for more, more contractors right, we’re looking for very qualified crews that have the ability to, to service properties. We’re of course always looking for customers right?

So, right now for example, were in Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Minnesota, Florida, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and we continue to grow that of course you want to continue to grow your core group within each state but at the same time you want to start moving into you know the new areas that you haven’t actually had an ability to do that and and the way that we look at it is that you have seasonal state so you’ve got a spring, summer, fall, winter where you know it changes and then of course if you look at our Southern states or West coast states or Arizona for that matter you know there’s no snow removal right?

You see snow in the media but that’s about it. So, it’s a 12 months of your landscaping and it’s just a little bit of a different plan that’s probably why we’ve only, we are only, in Florida as far as one of those states because we’re learning it, we’re understanding it, then it’s going very very well. So we continue to of course look for more customers that are looking for lawn maintenance as well as landscaping because we have the ability to service both of those. And at the same time we’re looking for those contractors. Thankfully, we have raised capital. So, currently we sit well with that.

Of course we’re always looking to continue to grow our business. For right now, at least within the path, that we are, we’re looking forward to scale up at space right now. Our sales funnel is, is great but we’re always looking for more opportunities in each of the areas that we service.” ”And then if someone, wanted to reach out, it’s or are kinda interested in and learning more.

How can they find you online? with What’s your website? Are you on Social Media? Do you have an email? How can someone get in touch? Absolutely, so as far as getting in touch with us. The easiest way to look at any information around us is going to our website, which is https://edenapp.com.

I answer emails, unless I’m in a meeting or a podcast almost immediately you can send me a direct email to [email protected]. Or ofcourse so we are across all social media, so, whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. We have a small tech top one but that has really taken off just yet so we might. We might have to work on that a little bit. But we are across all social media, but you can reach out anytime through our website directly. You can email me and of course on social media would love for you to follow us. And would love to of course have the opportunity to service your property if you have one.” “Awesome! Well, thanks so much for coming on to the podcast. I really appreciate it.” “Thank you very much Matt and I appreciate the opportunity.”

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