Indian American lawyer entrepreneur Manik Suri wanted to make the world a safer and better place, so in June 2014 he founded the technology company CoInspect.
The San Francisco, Calif.-based company, formerly known as MeWe, builds mobile software to manage compliance, quality assurance and brand standards.
Its services were thrust into an urgent need in 2015, according to a San Francisco Chronicle report, when Chipotle's reputation took a hit amid several food-borne illnesses that were originating from their restaurants.
Restaurant owners and brands were calling at the time to inquire about the company's services, according to the report.
CoInspect helps government agencies and companies digitize public health and safety inspections through an app to help avoid Chipotle-like concerns.
The incident in 2015, according to Suri in the report, inspired the company to refocus the general-purpose inspection app it released in 2014 on the food industry.
“Everyone eats, everyone eats out, so food and food safety is critical,” he told the publication.
Fast forward several years later and CoInspect has been utilized for inspections roughly 100,000 times.
The app allows inspectors to create checklists that include photos and voice memos. Users can also assign inspections, generate reports and analyze trends, it said.
Among restaurant chains taking advantage of CoInspect are TGI Fridays and P.F. Chang, the Chronicle said. Additionally, the New York State Department of Health and nonprofit Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services also use CoInspect to stay adherent to food safety regulations, the report said.
After starting in Cambridge, Mass., in 2014, the company moved to San Francisco a year later. It has raised $3.1 million in funding.
According to Suri, his motivation to improve the “broken workflow” of inspections comes from his experience working in a housing clinic as a Harvard Law School student, the publication noted, and making the process more efficient.
He accompanied inspectors as they tagged tenant violations, lugging around clipboards, binders and digital cameras to do so. Creating a single inspection report took about four hours, it said.
According to Suri in the report, CoInspect reporting is two to three times faster.
The company is working on integrating its software with food temperature probes and sensors for equipment monitoring, the report noted.
The goal, Suri said in the report, is to reduce human error and add a layer of verification that is hard to achieve with paper inspections.
The company describes itself as a team of entrepreneurs and engineers passionate about making the world better and safer for everyone.
"We’re working with hundreds of leading organizations to manage legal compliance, quality assurance, and brand standards," the company, founded by entrepreneurs from Harvard, UCLA and Columbia, said on the site. "Our customers include government agencies, major corporations, small businesses, and nonprofits."
Suri is a Harvard Law School graduate, having also received degrees from Harvard University and the University of Cambridge.
In addition to CoInspect, Suri founded the Governance Lab, where he led strategy and business development at a civic innovation center that designs and implements tech-enabled solutions to transform government and advance 21st century democracy.
He also served as a policy adviser at the White House in 2011 in the National Economic Council, and was an affiliate at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard.