Trey Phills worked hard to achieve his dream of playing professional basketball. After graduating from Yale University, he was drafted by The Windy City Bulls in the 2018 G League Draft. He found his way onto the Greensboro Swarm later that year.
Trey was able to play a few games before the season came to an abrupt halt due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He moved back to Charlotte, North Carolina. Not being the type to sit around doing nothing, Trey started putting up videos on TikTok during quarantine. He quickly gained 400,000 followers, and his account is still growing.
Though he found success on TikTok, that wasn't the only thing Trey wanted to do during his time in quarantine. Trey wanted to keep training. Knowing that the pandemic wouldn't last forever, he wanted to make sure he was in shape for the next season (whenever that might be). Unfortunately, most gyms were closed, but he managed to find some hidden gems that were still open and would allow him to book court time to practice.
The problem was that the open gyms weren't multi-franchised gyms with updated websites and social media accounts. Instead, they were smaller gyms, some of them mom-and-pop type gyms, that didn't always have the most up-to-date information published on the web.
This resulted in Trey needing to search, call, email, and sometimes walk into places just to find out if they were open and, if so, had court availability.
After doing some research, he found that there wasn't anything available to solve his specific need to find and book open facilities near his location. He wasn't interested in joining just one facility since it might not have what he needed for different workouts, like swimming pools, weight rooms, a yoga room, and, importantly, a basketball court.
Trey knew he wasn't the only one having this problem.
Fortunately for Trey, he knew exactly who to call to help him solve it.
On the other side of the world sat Akim Mitchell, a guard who graduated from Hampton University in Virginia before playing overseas for Focsani in Romania during the 2019-2020 season. Akim was quarantining in Romania when he got a call from Trey, asking him to help with a project.
Trey also called Devon Oakley, who had played basketball for Hampton University, where he received his MBA. Unlike Trey and Akim, Devon didn't pursue a basketball career but instead landed a coveted position as an analyst at Accenture.
With his dream team assembled, Trey got to work planning his solution—an app that would allow users to find and book time at nearby gyms easily. The app would show users available facilities and keep up-to-date information about when the gym was open and what equipment was available. At the same time, it would help gyms of all sizes market their businesses to get more traffic into their facilities.
Trey broke the project down into three parts—the end-user, the facilities, and the backend/admin portion. Each team member took on a role that played to their strengths.
Soon after, Gymble met with Confianz to discuss the project. They spent a few weeks holding discussions to confirm requirements, signing an NDA, and putting together a work breakdown structure (WBS) that detailed the pieces of the mobile app that needed to be completed and the hours it would take to complete. Then, in February 2021, the project officially started.
The design phase came first. The Confianz development team took the logo from Gymble and built out the overall look and feel of the app. Then, they suggested a compatible color scheme, fonts, button style, and more to create a clean, fresh look.
Once the design was approved, the Confianz team implemented it into React Native to test within iOS and Android environments. Then came the heavy lifting. First, the development team started working through the WBS for the user-end of the app. This included developing registration requirements, authentication, and a user profile. Then, the Confianz team developed the user interface, which would automatically locate a facility for the user based on their current location and applied filters.
From there, the Confianz development team created a messaging system, review page, FAQ, and "about us" section before testing. They then moved on to developing the facility app.
While the Confianz team was working on building the app, the Gymble team was busy signing up facilities and building partnerships so the app would be ready to launch once development was completed.
The app's backend needed a lot of customization to support all the app's operations, such as messaging, notification, managing users, facilities, and bookings and processing payments. This came last, after the user-end and facilities portions were developed.
The Gymble team met with the Confianz team once a week for the project's duration, which was four months from start to finish. During these meetings, the groups would discuss what was completed during the prior week and highlight what was up next. In addition, sessions typically included a demo to show the app and its progression so the Confianz team could get feedback from the Gymble team.
On June 19, 2021, Confianz Customer Success Manager Adam Grossman attended an investor breakfast presentation where the Gymble team first unveiled the app. The team presented their story, explaining how the app solved a real problem for athletes, coaches, parents, and event coordinators. They also demonstrated the ease and simplicity of using the app.
The breakfast generated a lot of interest. A week later, the app officially launched at Velocity Sports Performance in Pineville, NC. This event was a massive success and was attended by Confianz CEO Anoop Menon and his daughter.
Within a few days of launching, the Gymble app had reached over 200 downloads. The Gymble team is currently in the process of adding more facilities in the Charlotte area, with plans to expand to major cities in the coming months. In addition, they are currently working on partnering with the YMCA and the Charlotte Hornets.
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