This black entrepreneur finds it more effective to ask which investors he wants to make money with than to beg them for money.
Jim Gibbsa co-founder of Meter Feeder, a parking fee app that allows vehicles to pay for parking via an integration between the vehicle and a city’s metering system, has built a long career in software engineering after leaving Carnegie Mellon due to a shortage had left finances at parking fees.
According to Forbes, Gibbs, who has been writing software since 1968, decided it was unnecessary to change his strategies after being told he needed to be “more confident” or that he was “undercutting” by white investors. He has reportedly made millions from Meter Feeder with a 15-person team and his co-founder. Daniel Lopreto, since they started the company after winning a hackathon in 2015.
Did you know that the first version of @MeterFeeder originally came from a #hackathon? The vision was to make it easier for municipalities to collect payments#SpeakFreely #Parking #MeterFeeder #ParkIt #Hackathon #Startup #Entrepreneurship #StartupGrind #PathToSuccess
— MeterFeeder (@MeterFeeder) June 29, 2022
He said his process when meeting investors shifted to asking himself, “Would I be an LP in your fund?”
In 2016, the company went through Y Combinator and received $100,000 from the Google Black Founders Fund in 2021. Investors in Meter Feeder, which has raised a total of $4.1 million, include Paul BuchheitState’s Innovation Works, Mountain State Capital, Precursor Ventures and Trucks Venture Capital.
Gibbs is confident that Meter Feeder already has a solid business model in place to attract investors who believe in the company’s mission. Forbes said the entrepreneur is currently discussing potential uses of Meter Feeder’s API with automakers and the federal government, allowing money to be transferred through internet-connected devices.
According to Technical.ly, the platform was officially rolled out to the Pittsburgh Parking Authority in August 2021, having started in the Dormont area in 2015. The team took the app to local communities and is working on expanding it to larger cities.
“Big cities are coming to Pittsburgh to find out what we’re doing in terms of parking,” Gibbs said in a 2021 feature.
Gibbs studied computer science at Carnegie Mellon and worked as a software developer for companies such as Slaymaker Solutions, American Eagle Outfitters and Branding Brand.