Seattle-based React Mobile is a VisionTech Angels portfolio company with a workforce safety platform with solid traction in the hospitality industry. Our group initially invested in 2019. A lot has changed since then with new leadership and a new release of their solution. React Mobile is now raising a convertible round. Based on the company’s progress, VisionTech Angels investors have expressed $100,000 in soft interest prior to the formal pitch on Thursday, November 18. I recently sat down with CEO John Stachowiak and here’s our discussion.
BP: Tell me about yourself and other leadership changes. I hear you have an Indiana connection.
JS: I do! I am a proud Indiana University graduate. I’ve been on the React Mobile board of directors since mid 2018. During the pandemic, the board agreed that we needed to upgrade the leadership team with more seasoned members. The first change was replacing the CTO in December 2020. Riley Eller had worked with me at my last company for 10 years. He is without question the most talented CTO and strategic business thinker I have ever worked with. We also replaced the CFO position. I accepted the CEO position this year. This is my fourth time as a CEO, having led companies in the United States and Europe. My experience has been with early growth startups, and I’ve taken three companies to exit with returns of 8x, 13x and 26x respectively. I believe my experience and skills match up very well as React Mobile enters its growth phase.
BP: Any changes in your product offering, technology, or business model?
JS: This year we unveiled version 2.0 of our workplace safety platform. It’s designed to deliver the highest panic button reliability and beacon location accuracy on the market while being radically simpler for hotel workers to use. We’ve also simplified our SaaS pricing. Here are some of the new features:
- A new responder application that enables employees to receive safety alert notifications on their mobile devices and dispatch help. Management receives analytics measuring how long it took for an employee to respond to an active alert.
- Support for all third-party iBeacons such as Aruba, Cisco Meraki and CommScope/RUCKUS®. With iBeacon functionality already existing in a hotel’s WIFI access points, hoteliers will save up to 80% of workforce safety platform install costs.
- A double-redundant alert pipeline to ensure that alerts are dispatched from panic buttons to responders in the fastest time possible. React Mobile 2.0 delivers 99.9% of alerts in less than a half-second.
- Two-way, multi-lingual conversations in English, Spanish, Tagalog, French, and Chinese. Any language can be supported on request.
There are other important enhancements which I’ll share in my pitch.
BP: What impact did COVID have on hospitality industry and React Mobile’s business?
JS: The pandemic has had a devastating effect on the hospitality industry, particularly in the early days when travel ground to a halt. Once areas of the country started to regain a sense of normalcy, the industry focused on adjusting processes and regaining their footing. Some areas around the country have rebounded significantly, which is welcome to all of us. In terms of React Mobile, 2020 and 2021 were both growth years. Our SaaS revenue grew more than 100% in 2020 over 2019 and is on track to grow 100% in 2021 over 2020. The number of installed properties grew by 133% in 2020 and in 2021, we’re up 48% to date.
BP: That’s impressive given all of the disruptions of COVID and now the labor shortage. What do you attribute that to?
JS: There are a couple of factors. Employee safety continues to be the number one driver. What’s shocking to me personally is 58% of hotel workers report being assaulted on the job. And 96% of housekeepers say they’d feel safer with a panic button. Leading brands representing 23,000 hotels have signed the “Five Star Promise” committing their organizations to employee safety devices. Compliance must be met by the end of 2022. At the same time, the number of states mandating panic buttons in hotels with more than 50 rooms is increasing.
As a result, demand is strong. We’ve signed 12 Master Service Agreement with major brands that represent 23,000 properties. Of these, about 25% – 5,729 properties – are exclusive agreements. The growth potential for React Mobile is huge.
BP: Any other big wins?
JS: We have a strong and growing presence in Las Vegas. Fourteen of the 30 major properties on the strip are React Mobile customers. We are currently covering 37,791 of the 93,022 rooms on the Las Vegas strip.
BP: Now that the platform is proven, are you looking at other industries?
JS: Absolutely. Education is a natural one for React Mobile. Looking at elementary, middle and high schools, as well as colleges and universities, we’re looking at a total addressable market of $490 million. There is definitely recognition for the need for improved security methods. We’re also looking at health care. Hospitals represent a total addressable market of $210 billion. A key strategic investor in React Mobile is a respected technology provider in these industries and has provided clear guidance for adapting our technology stack to better serve them.
BP: How much are you raising and what will the proceeds be used for?
JS: We are looking to raise up to $3 million with the same terms as our last convertible note. These funds will allow us to continue to scale the company.
BP: Why should VisionTech Angels invest another round in React Mobile?
JS: Despite COVID-19, our SaaS revenue will end the year at an ARR of approximately $2.4 million with a pre-money value of about $13.5 million, a multiple of less than 6x. Our new 2.0 product release is the best in the industry and with it, we expect to grow revenue another 100% in 2022 and again in 2023. At this point, we have our workplace safety platform where it needs to be, and in addition to expanding our beachhead in the hospitality industry, we are looking at new opportunities in education and health care. Bottom line, we would like VisionTech Angels to continue to grow with us.
To learn more about React Mobile, visit their website. VisionTech Angels’ November Pitch Events will be virtual on Thursday, November 18 at Noon ET and at 6 p.m. ET. Pitch events are open to our members and accredited investors interested in joining our group. To register, check your email for an invitation, go to our Events page or email Ben Pidgeon at email@example.com.