The Software Productization Center (SPC) at Millersville University and two local entrepreneurs, Fran Gillott and Ryan Keener, are launching a new application called DeliveryCrowd.

DeliveryCrowd, a Central Pennsylvania startup, uses crowd-sourced delivery, where smart phone-enabled drivers are connected, real-time, with businesses. The innovative cell phone app matches restaurant owners looking for delivery options, with delivery drivers.

“The DeliveryCrowd process is smooth. The consumer places an order with their local restaurant; the restaurant will then enter the order, along with desired pickup time and customer information into the DeliveryCrowd website. We’ll see the order and use our algorithm to locate the best available driver to deliver the order. Drivers are referred to as ‘crowdies.’ In short, we are crowd-sourcing delivery. Each crowdie appears as a blip on our map and we track them real-time using their GPS-enabled smart phone,” said Gillot. “And while DeliveryCrowd is optimized as a scalable delivery solution for businesses, as a consumer, you too can hire a crowdie. Simply enter the location and pickup time, and the crowdie is on his way.”

Millersville University students and professors from the Departments of Computer Science, Art & Design, Management & Marketing and Communication and Theatre have worked together with the two professionals to develop and launch DeliveryCrowd. The app was showcased at a November 1 launch party held at the Ware Center, Millersville University Lancaster.

“The launch showcased the functionality of the app, though the product is currently going through a private beta test. Our plan is to increasingly expand the private beta as we gain traction. The fully released app will be coming soon; we encourage you to sign up on the website to learn more and to be notified as news happens,” said Dr. Stephanie Schwartz, Millersville University associate professor and DeliveryCrowd faculty committee member.

Millersville’s students and faculty have assisted in multiple capacities. Students were involved in every aspect of the project including research and development, brand design, software infrastructure creation and case use studies. This year’s student team includes Bob Hennessey, Adam Bitner, Logan Peck, Dan Lipson and Bri Piccari. The students have agreed to continue working with DeliveryCrowd after the launch.

The SPC at Millersville University was initially formed with a three-year infrastructure grant from the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and received a fifth year of funding to continue the program in 2012.

To sign up for updates, visit DeliveryCrowd’s website. For more information on the SPC, visit Millersville’s SPC website.

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