THE ANXR STORY
When Nathan and I crossed paths, we were colleagues, doing a job that required extensive travel. Every week, a new job. Every job, a new city. Every new city…
…too many food decisions.
When you’re in a new place every week, the only thing that matters is one important question, “Where are we going to eat?” To answer this question, we only had 2 options. Our first option was to ask our clients where to go. They always responded the same.
“Well, there’s a Chiles down the road or,” they would then lower their voice to a barely audible whisper, “Do you want to go to a strip club?”
Not wanting either of those, our second option was to then get on Yelp, Urban Spoon, Google, etc. and roll the dice based on random ratings and reviews…
…which almost felt as dirty as a strip club.
Doing this rarely helped us find the local best kept secrets. But isn’t that what we’ve all settled for?…
…the top whatever based on reviews from whoever.
If we did stumble upon a great place to eat, within our small consultant group, we would always talk about it. It was a huge deal. Conversations would go something like this:
“When you’re in Missouri, you have to get sushi at Haruno.”
“Sushi in Missouri?”
“I know it sounds crazy, but it is so good. Trust me.”
“Trust me” became the phrase ANXR was built on. Based on trust, several within our consultant group can confirm the awesomeness of Haruno. And these fantastic restaurant stories were passed down to new hires like tribal folklore.
Nathan and I had mentioned how cool it would be to have an app where we could share cool restaurants. So whenever we landed in an unknown city, we could pull up the app and see where other consultants had been, people we knew and trusted…
…except for that one guy whose favorite restaurant was Red Lobster.
So really, ANXR was born many years ago, and the idea never went away. We didn’t pursue it back then because we just figured someone else would do it.
Fast forward to 2016 and there still was no easy way to do what we needed. We realized the primary social networks had bigger agendas than food. Over there, food pics not only annoyed followers, but they quickly got lost among selfies, status updates, and cat pictures.
If we really wanted a pure food sharing app, we were going to have to build it ourselves. So we met on weekends, designed it out, and asked every engineer we knew to help…
…Turns out getting engineers to work for free is much harder than we thought it would be.
Finally, after exhausting every option to find some developers, we learned a little bit of code ourselves and got some help from a few coders in India. They helped us build a first version of ANXR which we gave to our closest friends. Now, ANXR is what it is today: the best place to remember, share, and discover your next best restaurant experience.
We still view ANXR as a weekend hobby. A self-motivated passion. A big badass idea. In the beginning we didn’t know anything about naming, building, or launching apps. We broke all the rules, and we didn’t care, because we loved it.
This attitude still prevails within us and the ANXR community. We are rebellious. We are unapologetic. And unlike billion dollar apps or the ratings and review algorithm machines…
…We are authentic.
by Dallin Moon