Trellus was profiled by Long Island Business News in an article published Oct. 15, 2021. The article details how Trellus provides a critical service of same-day local delivery, helping Long Island small businesses and Main Streets thrive.
By Adina Genn
Shop local: It’s a virtuous mantra for so many who want to support the small businesses that give Long Island’s Main Streets a sense of community. But these mom-and-pops are grappling with a slew of hurdles: Supply and labor shortages, expensive rents, and the high cost of running a business amid a pandemic. It can be a constant challenge just to stay open for business.
Adam Haber thinks he has a solution. He is a principal of Long Beach-based Trellus: Same Day Local Delivery Service, a new enterprise whose seamless technology focuses on same-day delivery for the region’s small businesses. The company, which launched in January 2021, claims its gig-drivers now make between 50 and 150 deliveries a day, usually within two hours.
Haber co-founded the company, along with Brian Berkery and JR Jensen. The three have invested “several hundred thousand dollars as partners” in the company, Haber said, and are in the process of raising a $2 million seed round.
With Trellus, the co-founders aim to empower individually owned small businesses to provide consumers with the immediacy driven by big tech. It marries that promise with the personalized offerings shoppers love when buying local. This way, small businesses can compete with the increasing trend of shopping online, and possibly one-up the Amazons, Walmarts and other e-retail disrupters that honed in on consumer convenience.
Haber, who once had political aspirations, has been thinking about the business model for a while.
“I had this idea four years ago,” Haber said. On a road trip in seemingly Middle America, he spotted a “Wendy’s, Target, Walmart – but no small businesses – there was no soul.”
The small, charming shops dotting local Main Streets “is the reason I moved here,” he said. But “more and more stores are empty,” he said, referring to vacant storefronts. “It’s destroying the fabric of the community,” Haber said.
Trellus comes at a time when the prevalence of digital shopping for both essential and non-essential items is expected to continue, even post-pandemic, according to McKinsey & Company, the global management consulting company.
At the same time, the outlook for consumer spending on Long Island looks promising, according to Anthony Esernio, TD Bank’s Market President of Suburban New York.
“We’re optimistic about the fourth quarter,” Esernio told LIBN. “We’re seeing activity increase,” and especially now with so many people vaccinated, that activity “is gaining speed.”
That’s good news for small businesses, many of whom got a financial boost from the federal Payment Protection Program. In New York State, TD Bank helped 55,000 businesses secure PPP funding worth $5 billion, and about 90 percent of them having the first round of that money forgiven, Esernio said.
“A lot of companies have some cash and are looking to spend it,” he said.
Still, there are challenges, he said, including wage pressure, inflation concerns, and supply chain issues.
“Companies are having a hard time getting labor to meet the pent-up demand,” he said.
Haber said he designed Trellus to help Long Island’s small businesses meet that demand….