Apoorva Mehta developed his multi-billion-dollar company while living on a friend’s couch in the heart of San Francisco. The idea for Instacart came from Apoorva’s hatred of all aspects of grocery shopping process. In San Francisco, Apoorva had no car and this limited access to the grocery stores whose products he really liked; not to mention, he hated the bright lights, endless lines, and crowded aisles that plague all grocers.
Armed with the desire to fix his hatred of grocery stores, in 2012 Apoorva solved his problem with a solution of his own: Instacart. Less than one month after coming up with his idea, Apoorva had a crude version of Instacart up and running. Today, Instacart has transformed from a humble start-up to a thriving company that offers same-day grocery delivery. Customers order through a web-based app from a variety of grocers, and within a few hours their selections are hand delivered by a personal shopper to their door. As of 2017, Instacart employees over 10,000 full and part-time employees and has completed over three million orders to over 200,000 different customers.
Apoorva abandoned his social network idea due to a lack of passion. His biggest struggle in developing over 20 different entrepreneurial ideas is that he cared little for the issues and problems of the clientele he was developing these startups for. Apoorva could not identify with the problems his startups were trying to solve, he didn’t know whether or not lawyers wanted to meet and make friends, and most importantly, he genuinely did not care. He discovered that to find fulfillment and success, he needed to focus on solving a problem that he himself actually cared about. It was only once he focused on navigating his disdain for grocery shopping that he created a start-up gratifying enough to put in the time and work needed to make it profitable.