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Meet Shea Coakley of LeanBox

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shea Coakley.

Shea, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
The company was founded back in 2014 as a quick service restaurant. As a side project, we invented a smart refrigerator for corporate break rooms. It didn’t take long to realize we had lightning in a bottle with disrupting the corporate food service space. We quickly pivoted and have been focused on changing the way people eat at work since 2015.

The corporate food service world has lacked true innovation for decades. If you are a 1,000 plus person campus, the “big 3” can build you a cafeteria that runs 24/7. If you are like most offices in the United States, you are spending a lot of time and money scraping together a program that is bound to make people unhappy. LeanBox brings a new technology and service to offices 30-1000 people allowing for a seamless, connected break room experience.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
People are 100% accurate when they describe running a startup as “building the plane mid-flight.” The high’s and low’s are intense but eventually, you learn to live somewhere in the middle. The big challenge for us is chipping away at the day to day while having such grand aspirations for our company and our product. We think the LeanBox service is something that could be in every office across the United States. We also see a big picture road map for what our service and technology will mean for employers. For us, it’s all about the right prioritization.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with LeanBox – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
LeanBox provides technology-enabled foodservice solutions for offices that do not have a corporate cafeteria. Our flagship product, the LeanBox, is a smart refrigerator that gives employee’s access to anything from a Greek yogurt to a Chicken Caesar Salad. Our big advantage is being able to be the one source for offices developing a program that includes fruit delivery, coffee stations, dairy, etc. all through an easy to use, seamless technology and service.

Because we are so focused on technology, we have the ability to give excellent insight as to what is working in a program and what needs to be changed. Our smart refrigerators report data back to us letting us know what needs to be restocked, what is approaching its expiration date and what the employees are gravitating towards. The entire goal is for us to run a great food program so that companies can run their own company.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
We’ll continue to grow in two ways. For starters, we’ll be growing city of city. We just launched our Chicago operation and city number 3 and 4 will be coming on line soon. In addition, we’ll always be continuing to develop our product and technology, which includes our mobil app, employer portal, point of sale kiosk and connected hardware devices. We are kind of like nest, but for the breakroom instead of the home.

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