The Jargon team: Mark Veronda, Shaun Withers, Jonathan Burstein, Milkana Brace, Levi Sawyers
On a predictably rainy day in Seattle last December, Marco Avila, Jonathan Burstein and I walked into Fenwick & West’s offices and incorporated Jargon. After signing the paperwork and taking the obligatory picture, we went straight to work.
Marco Avila, Milkana Brace, Jonathan Burstein at incorporation
What an incredible ride we’ve had over the past year! At Jargon, we set out to remove conversational language barriers but what that meant changed several times over. In the first half of this year we built two mobile apps, connecting hospitality employees to interpreters on demand. We ran several pilots in Seattle-based hotels and teamed up with wonderful interpreters. We then pitched the same product to high-end retailers and several other verticals before we decided to completely reset direction in August.
Instead of overcoming language barriers between humans, Jargon shifted to conversations between humans and machines, capitalizing on the rise of voice technologies.
We were fortunate to go through the Alexa Accelerator, benefitting from an incredible network at both TechStars and Amazon, in addition to financial support and mentorship.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the past year, it is that it takes a community to build a company. Hundreds of people have extended a hand and have taken a chance on us - employees, customers, investors, partners, mentors. For each of them, there was surely a safer and more comfortable option, but they pushed through their discomfort and took a bet on us. It is these bets that ultimately make it possible to build a business and they are also what fuels our passion and determination to keep moving forward with brio.
For all of you who’ve taken a bet on Jargon and have contributed along the way, thank you! Happy One Year Anniversary!