Startland News is continuing its “Fund Me, KC” series to highlight area entrepreneurs’ efforts to accelerate their businesses or lend a helping hand to others. This is an opportunity for business owners and innovators — like Louis Byrd and Arlene Byrd from the social impact tech company Zanago — to share their crowdfunding stories and potentially gain backing from new supporters.
Who are you?
Hey there! We’re Louis and Arlene Byrd, the founders behind Zanago! And no, we are not siblings, we are husband and wife!
We’re driven by a deep-rooted desire to impact the world positively. Our company, Zanago, is all about leveraging technology and design to create solutions that prioritize the well-being of everyone, especially those who have historically been excluded.
And now, we’re gearing up to unveil our game-changing masterpiece, Kataba, a platform that brings transparency to the real estate world like never before.
Think of Kataba as Carfax, but for houses.
What does your campaign hope to accomplish?
We’re facing a crucial moment. Our financial resources have been stretched to their limits. We’ve invested everything we have financially and emotionally into this venture, completely bootstrapping with no outside investment. And while we’re almost there, we need a little help to push us over the finish line.
This is where our GoFundMe Campaign comes into play. With this campaign, we hope to gain the support of our community to be a part of something truly special. By contributing to our cause, contributors become an essential piece of our journey by helping us complete the first version of Kataba and propelling it into the market.
Click here to support the campaign.
What’s your ‘why’?
Discovering our “why” has been an incredibly powerful journey for our company. We envision a world where equity is the norm so everyone feels a profound sense of belonging and opportunity. That’s our ambitious goal, inspired by Simon Sinek’s “Why Statement”. However, let’s delve deeper into the personal aspect of our “why,” the one that resonates with our humanity.
We refuse to let other families endure the hardships, stress, and trauma we experienced in real estate. Our journey over the past five years has been riddled with challenges, beginning with our first house. We were forced to sell it at a significant loss due to a failed FHA 203k loan. It was a devastating blow, but it didn’t deter us from pursuing our dream of finding a safe home for our family.
We purchased our second home, believing it had been fully renovated and secure. Sadly, we soon discovered that the seller had hired non-licensed contractors whose work was subpar and non-compliant with regulations. This left us drowning in debt and overwhelmed by unexpected repair needs. The toll it took on us emotionally cannot be measured.
Our journey has illuminated the dire consequences of a lack of transparency within the mortgage and real estate industries. Unaware and vulnerable individuals can easily fall victim to this system, enduring unimaginable hardships along the way. We refuse to let this continue.
By contributing to our crowdfunding efforts, you are not only supporting our company, but you are also joining a movement to bring about lasting change. Your generosity will empower us to create a platform that promotes transparency, accountability, and fairness. Together, we can build a future where no family has to experience the heartache and financial burdens we endured.
How much do you hope to raise with the crowdfunding campaign?
How do you plan to use the funds?
The Funds received will go toward the following:
- Outstanding bills
- Development costs for Kataba (server space, API costs, cloud services, etc.)
- Legal services for incorporation and patents
By supporting us with these funds, you will provide the operating capital essential for us to remain dedicated to developing and delivering this transformative application.
Anything else our readers should know about you or this effort?
In an industry like real estate that has often been plagued by uncertainty and hidden pitfalls, Kataba stands tall as a guardian of security. Our platform empowers individuals with comprehensive information and insights about properties. By leveraging the power of technology, we provide a robust tool that unveils the hidden truths, ensuring that no surprises or unexpected issues arise down the line for homeowners, both current and future.
We want the community to understand that their contribution goes beyond financial support. It serves as a beacon of validation, expressing the community’s belief in what we are building and our vision of reimagining homeownership with transparency.