Toronto-based Guardly, a startup providing mobile apps and dashboard tools to help increase personal safety, today announced a partnership with Code Blue, one of the earliest pioneers of emergency phones for high traffic, high risk areas like hospitals, campuses and airports. The full details of the partnership weren’t revealed, but in an interview Guardly founder Josh Sookman explained what Guardly brings to the table for Code Blue, and where that might lead in the future.
Guardly has had a history of finding success through opportunistic partnerships, after originally targeting consumers directly with a mobile app designed for use with any smartphone that could send emergency texts or make calls complete with details about a user that could be useful to emergency response personnel. The app turned out to be an easier sell to campuses, and now Guardly is continuing in that vein with this latest team-up, but the potential here is even greater, thanks to Code Blue’s existing wide reach.
The reach of Code Blue’s network covers “hundreds of millions of travellers, workers and students every year,” according to info shared by Sookman. That’s a significant step up, and makes it a natural partner for Guardly. While the specific details of the arrangement have been kept mostly under wraps, Sookman said we can expect Guardly’s mobile tech to be integrated into existing Code Blue systems to provide first responders with not only info on where the call came from, but also on who’s making it, their medical information, and previous incidents they may have reported in the system.
“You get a sense of what’s happened with that person in the past, so is it someone who constantly has allergic reactions in the past and needs an epi pen, or is it someone who constantly has harassment problems,” Sookman said. “We’ll be able to bring that situational arrangement that currently isn’t available.”
Recently, Guardly recently participated in a study by a Toronto university looking to increase student safety efforts that found response times were cut in half using its Safe Campus product, owing to the information it provides. Those kinds of numbers no doubt helped when it secured a partnership with the Toronto-based Ontario College of Art & Design last week, and had to be a selling factor for Code Blue, too.
Sookman couldn’t reveal financial details of the partnership, but did admit that it could pave the way for potential acquisition discussions down the road, considering the fit of both companies. He also said, however, that there’s still plenty of opportunity for Guardly to build more, similar partnerships with others out there, especially now that it offers an API, and the company will begin looking around to raise a Series A round of funding shortly to help it explore its options.
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