How one founder pivoted a startup designed for in-person interaction in light of the pandemic – TechCrunch

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When Ashley Sumner designed and launched Quilt, it was meant to be a response to digital social networking, preferring creating authentic in-person interactions between people who didn’t necessarily know each other before. The app would match members for in-person conversations and informal meetups in their own homes — but when COVID-19 arrived, the fundamentals of the model obviously changed.

After first trying out Zoom-powered virtual video meetups as one alternative, Quilt instead settled on creating an audio platform that provided real-time conversation centered around wellness. It might sound like it has a lot in common with the rash of other audio networking startups out there, but unlike the buzzier Clubhouse or its many competitors, Quilt has carefully crafted a very different kind of community thanks to patience and building with intention.

Ashley talks to us this week on Found about making that big change, while also keeping intact the core mission that Quilt has been focused on from the beginning. She also tells us all about her own approach to being a founder and a leader, which is both unique and refreshing.

We loved our time chatting with Ashley, and we hope you love yours listening to the episode. And of course, we’d love if you can subscribe to Found in Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, on Google Podcasts or in your podcast app of choice. Please leave us a review and let us know what you think, or send us direct feedback either on Twitter or via email at found@techcrunch.com. And please join us again next week for our next featured founder.



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Kylie Knox

Kylie Knox

Kylie Knox is our lead analyst for Electronics Product reviews. She studied at RPI and worked on the retail side of the industry at B&H before landing at Topgadgethut. Also, she handled all of Good Housekeeping’s nutrition-related content, testing, and evaluation from 2017 to 2019.

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A registered dietitian with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Loyola University and a Master of Science degree in Clinical Nutrition from Columbia University, Kylie Knox handled all of Good Housekeeping’s nutrition-related content, testing, and evaluation from 2017 to 2020.

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