Goodbye Lines, Hello Mashgin: Dobromir Montauk Joins the Team

Dobromir Montauk with Mashgin Co-Founder Abhinai Srivastava

I’ve always hated waiting in lines. It’s like a hidden tax on our only irreplaceable asset – time. My aversion probably stems from the collective Polish memory of Communism, where long queues for bread, milk, shoes, were a daily ordeal:

Lines (kolejka in Polish) are so embedded in the national psyche that Poland's Institute of National Remembrance even created a board game to recreate the experience, called of course, Kolejka:

While Poland and America have moved past the era of breadlines, queues remain a persistent part of the retail experience despite technological advances. The average American spends over 100 hours each year waiting in line – cumulatively losing about 37 billion hours annually. That’s more time lost than the number of lives claimed by car fatalities! That’s why Mukul’s story of coming up with Mashgin while waiting in a cafeteria line resonated with me. Turning the kolejka into an engineering problem? Sounds hard and impactful. Sign me up.

What really clinched it for me was meeting Abhinai and hearing how they’d already scaled to over 5000 Mashgin kiosks and tens of millions in ARR with a remarkably small engineering team. These weren’t founders that wanted fancy LinkedIn titles and conference keynotes. They were still personally observing kiosks and sending MRs addressing the issues they saw. It’s a scrappy, builder culture, just focused on solving the next problem. The last two months have been a ton of fun. Come join us – we are profitable and investing heavily in the next phase of growth!

As I continue my journey of putting computer vision into real products for real people, I’ll definitely miss my old Doxel crew. Huge shout-out to Saurabh, who taught me everything I know as an executive and supported me throughout my search. Reid was the best product partner I could have asked for: thoughtful counterpart to my go-go-go attitude, tough on me, but supportive when I needed it too. Justin always reminded me to just get it done. And my engineering team that built the coolest product I’ve ever shipped – John, Will, Lawren, Dharmesh, Puneet, Rohit, Sergey, just too many to name all – you are in the very capable hands of WT. I’ll be rooting you from the sidelines.