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Bodega Has Fewer Locations Than Initially Thought

The most-hated start-up in America isn’t actually coming for the corner store

Photo: Bodega

Bodega, the startup that launched 1,000 angry Twitter posts, is less of a threat to actual bodegas than that Twitter outrage would have you believe. In fact, it seems Bodega has misled the public about the number of convenience store cabinets they actually have up and running.

Although the company, which sells nonperishable items from vending machine-like cabinets, claimed to be testing out the concept in more than 30 Bay Area locations, a number first reported in a Fast Company article, BuzzFeed News discovered that the actual number is only about half of that. After calling purported Bodega locations marked on a map on the company’s website, they learned that six of of the locations didn’t have a Bodega on site. Some were merely in preliminary talks with the company.

Bodega cofounder Paul McDonald confirmed to BuzzFeed that the total number of actual current Bodega cabinet sites was just 14, with a total of 30 expected to go live within the next two or three weeks. The claim of “over 30 locations” reported by Fast Company also appeared on the Bodega website. “We wrote the copy for the website a few weeks before launch,” McDonald told a BuzzFeed reporter. The site now states that “Bodegas are currently live or soon to be live in over 30 locations throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.”

Last week, McDonald responded to the initial Twitter outrage in a Medium post. He apologized for implying that the company’s aim was to replace corner stores and clarified that Bodega’s actual goal is to “bring commerce to places where commerce currently doesn’t exist.” But, clearly, they’re not there yet.

The Case Of The Ever-Mysterious Nonexistent Bodega Units [BuzzFeed]
This Startup Wants to Make Bodegas Obsolete and Twitter Is Not Here For It [E]
Bodega Isn’t Just Bad Branding, It’s Bad Business [E]

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