- Name of Startup: Zoy
- Year Founded: 2022
- Website: Meetzoy.com
- Type of company: B2C Mobile App
- HQ Location: Remote
Name: Afshin Shaw
Title: Founder & CEO
Name: Sahar Abdizadeh
Develop social-emotional skills with kid-tested, psychologist and parent-approved, tiny-knee-slapping stories from Zoy.
Problem the startup solves:
Zoy is designed by experts to promote social-emotional learning (or SEL), which empowers children to understand themselves and the world around them.
Research shows that well-developed SEL skills lead to many positive outcomes, such as improved mental health and academic performance. Studies reveal that storytelling is one of the best ways to improve social-emotional skills for young children.
Progress and Current Status:
Completed a successful Beta and released our app to the public.
Zoy started with this simple equation: Story time + a little bit of research + 1 epiphany = Zoy!
Let’s dive into this “who we are” equation!
Our founders Afshin and Sahar are the proud parents of 2 boys. The importance of developing social and emotional skills has been right in front of them – there’s no getting around it. As many parents and caregivers do, Afshin and Sahar read stories to their sons before bed each night.
One evening, Afshin was reading a story to his sons before bedtime. He was taking a moment to appreciate that quality time he had with his kids. He realized that this time of day – reading stories – was his absolute favorite part of the day.
That night, instead of going to sleep a reasonable hour, Afshin stayed up to do some research. What he found started a snowball of ideas. He found out that a bunch of other caregivers felt the same way. Storytime was a unanimous favorite. He shared this discovery with Sahar, and she added a critical piece to the puzzle (or snowman, if you want to keep going with that image).
She mentioned the positive psychological impact that stories can have on children as they grow and develop. Together, Afshin and Sahar had an epiphany – what if they could create a resource where kids and caregivers can learn important social and emotional skills through stories?
Zoy was born.
What is a Company the Startup Looks Up to, and Why?:
At Zoy, we look up to companies that prioritize making a positive impact on the world. We believe that businesses should be responsible for not only generating profits but also contributing to the betterment of society. We admire companies that are committed to environmental sustainability, social justice, and ethical business practices. We also believe that businesses can and should use their resources to make a difference in their communities and beyond.
Our mission at Zoy is to help children develop social-emotional skills that will prepare them for a brighter future. We want to empower kids to navigate life’s challenges with confidence, compassion, and resilience. To achieve this goal, we draw inspiration from companies that prioritize innovation and social impact, such as TOMS Shoes, Warby Parker, and Patagonia. Like these companies, we believe that businesses can drive social change while still delivering exceptional products and services.
The Company in Four Years Will Be…
The company in four years will be a leading force in the promotion of social-emotional learning among children, empowering them with the skills they need to navigate a rapidly changing world. We will continue to work tirelessly towards our mission of creating a world where every child has access to tools that help them grow into their best selves, and where families have the resources they need to deepen their bonds and strengthen their relationships.