2021 By the Numbers: A Year of Startup Milestones
Ohio startups are thriving, and we have the numbers to prove it
The last two years have been a challenge for all of us. But through it all, Ohio companies are still thriving, setting record numbers, stepping up more than ever before and even offering solutions to the COVID-19 pandemic.
We’ve already highlighted the big-picture growth from the Ohio startup scene in 2021 — but we wouldn’t want the amazing and innovative companies themselves to be lost in the shuffle.
Here are just a few major milestones from Ohio startups that showcase the numbers behind one of the state’s most successful years ever:
Spritz Sparkling Tea grew by 500% this year
The ongoing pandemic didn’t stop central Ohio startup Spritz Sparkling Tea from growing at a rapid rate in 2021. The company grew by 500 percent from 2020 to 2021, selling more than 150,000 cans of sparkling tea and multiplying the number of retailers that carry the product by more than ten times.
When Founder and CEO Kathryn Daugherty talked to TechOhio last year, she made it clear that her central Ohio home and the companies and organizations in the community were a major part of Spritz’s high ceiling.
“There is such a wealth of knowledge in Columbus and such an incredible desire to help each other out,” said Dougherty. “I’ve worked with Innovate New Albany, EDGE Innovation, Rev1, the WSBA and more, and all of these groups are so willing to advise, mentor and assist in growing. I think from a consumer and a retail partnership standpoint, there’s such an incredible pride in being Ohio-born and a Columbus-headquartered company that I think people are willing to choose you over alternatives. It’s really incredible to see that willingness to support local brands.”
ScriptDrop now serves patients in all 50 states
Columbus prescription delivery startup ScriptDrop has been growing quickly since launching in 2017, and 2021 was the company’s biggest year yet. The service now delivers to patients in all 50 states, helping pharmacies reduce return rates and helping health systems increase their same-day delivery abilities. The startup has delivered more than 5 million prescriptions, growing by 200 percent over 2020 and 700 percent over 2019.
“I am blown away by what the team at ScriptDrop was able to accomplish this year,” CEO Amanda Epp said. “From the partnership with Uber Health to expanding our technology in a way that will let us expand our reach even further, it’s been truly remarkable. We have all been laser-focused on patients and with that singular mind set continuing into 2022, I envision an even bigger and better year.”
RVshare reached 3 million nights booked on its platform Ohio startups are thriving, and we have the numbers to prove it
Founded in 2012, Cleveland startup RVshare hit its stride in 2020 as Americans flocked to the site as a method of safely getting away during the pandemic. They hit a major milestone of 200 nights booked in 2020, and that momentum has carried the company into 2021. This year, they reached an amazing 3 million nights booked. The company is even more proud that, out of thousands of on-site reviews, 94% rate their experience with 5 stars. When TechOhio spoke to RVshare last year, they wouldn’t have been surprised by this growth. The company believes it’s reinventing the American vacation.
“I believe in expanding the definition of travel,” said CEO Jon Gray. “Twenty years ago, if you were going to go on a trip, your only real option was staying in a hotel. Now, you might still stay in a hotel in New York, but if you’re going to the beach, you may stay in a vacation home or an AirBnB. Well, if you’re going on the great American road trip, camping, tailgating or going to a music festival, all of those things are served better by an RV. Travel, as a whole, is made better because the option for that experience exists.”
Third Sun Solar has generated 25 megawatts of solar energy
Athens startup Third Sun Solar is working to improve the efficiency of residential buildings, commercial buildings and everything in between, and the company’s impact has never been more pronounced. In its 21 years in business, Third Sun has installed solar panels across more than 1,250 homes and businesses, generating more than 25 megawatts of clean, solar energy for its customers. Last year, founders Michelle and Geoff Greenfield wrote a letter that sums up their excitement about the company’s growth.
“As the next 20 years unfold, expect to see the Third Sun Solar team operating out of more places around the region, making it even easier for people to take producing clean power into their own hands,” they wrote. “There are exciting times ahead for the company, the region and the planet. The next ten years have been called the “Solar Decade,” and Third Sun Solar is ready to continue to be a force for good in the bright future of clean energy!”
More than 5 million people call themselves Roadtrippers
Headquartered in Cincinnati’s Over-the-Rhine neighborhood, Roadtrippers, a road trip planning tool, has helped millions plan their cross-country travels. This year, the company hit a major milestone, surpassing five million members. The company is part of the Roadpass Digital family, after an acquisition in 2018 made them one of Cincinnati’s major success stories. Now, as part of the larger brand, the company is reaching more travelers than ever.
“The [5 million member milestone] reflects our passion for developing trip discovery and planning tools that create value for our users,” said Roadpass Digital CEO Danny Hest. “With Roadtrippers’ continued innovation and Roadpass Digital’s strategic expansion of our product family to include Campendium and RVillage, we’re creating the premier set of tools to inspire and enable the entire recreational travel experience by road.”
Amify helped sell more than $100 million in merchandise
Since expanding to a co-headquarters in Cincinnati in 2019, Amify has continued to grow into a major player in the eCommerce industry. The company becomes a full-service partner with organizations it works with, optimizing sales through Amazon. This year, they helped companies sell more than $100 million in gross merchandise value, a 600 percent increase over the past year from both new and existing clients. The company says they’re now the largest service provider focused on third-party sales. When they talked to TechOhio last year, the company made it clear that they’re not just in it for their own growth, they can help other small businesses soar.
“We worked with a beauty care company that had about 35 different outlets selling their product,” said Marketing VP Sean Lee. “They had just continued to lower their price, so it was below where they were selling on their website and through other channels. We helped clean that up in a matter of three months, improving their content and advertising. Within 12 months, they were doing about five times more revenue on a monthly basis on the platform. With Amify, you can really grow pretty quickly.”
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