2020 Startups To Watch

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FOUNDED 2016 CITY Vineyard EMPLOYEES 31 INDUSTRY Jewelry/E-commerce WEBSITE ManlyBands.com FOUNDERS Johnathan Ruggiero, 39; Michelle Luchese, 41 THE COMPANY A provider of unique-to-you wedding bands.

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Man, oh, man. This stellar startup is running circles around the competition. Manly Bands helps every man (woman, and alien) find a “genuine badass and unique-to-them wedding band.” With marketing that rings true and customer service that rocks (they “guaran ’damn ’tee it”), it’s become a multi-million dollar company with manly good looks.

GOALS 1. “Expand into international markets.” 2. “Successfully launch our women’s brand Rosie Ray.” 3. “Become the household name for men’s wedding rings.”

ADVICE “You’re only as good as those you surround yourself with, so prioritize your team. Take care of them.”


Luckiest Moment “Meeting my amazing wife and getting married. Without our own ring buying journey, we never would have thought to start Manly Bands.”

Unluckiest Moment “Having to lay off our own family members in our first year due to some slow months. It was heartbreaking, but thankfully they understood.”

Make Your Own Luck “Don’t get distracted by the past.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “We’ll be a household name for men’s wedding bands.”


FOUNDED 2017 CITY Orem EMPLOYEES 3,850 (50 of those at the corporate office) INDUSTRY Food and beverage WEBSITE CrumblCookies.com FOUNDERS Jason McGowan, 38; Sawyer Hemsley, 38 THE COMPANY A cookie shop and delivery company.

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Crumbl is one tough cookie. The cookie delivery business is so hot right now (literally), and Crumbl has been at the forefront with its 114 storefronts. In the recipe for success? An intense focus on technology and mouth-watering marketing. Crumbl has 365k followers on Instagram, operates in 22 states, ships nationwide, and is the fastest-growing cookie company in the United States.  

GOALS 1. “Taking the Cumbl #pinkbox international!” 2. “Establishing Crumbl Cookies as a household name.” 3. “Establishing a smart kitchen at the core of Crumbl’s operation, making our in-store experience smooth and extraordinary.”

ADVICE “Consider how technology can and should be integrated into your business from the beginning. Being a tech-driven-bakery has helped Crumbl scale, pivot, and reach customers in a way that wouldn’t have been possible if tech weren’t at our core from the start.”


Luckiest Moment “Finding an amazing business partner.”

Unluckiest Moment “Not starting Crumbl Cookies sooner.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “More yummy flavors, hustle and growth.”


FOUNDED 2018 CITY Lehi EMPLOYEES 223 INDUSTRY Home improvement services WEBSITE GoSolo.io FOUNDER Dan Larkin, 35 THE COMPANY A point-of-sale platform for the home improvement industry

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Solo is for everyone. It’s a streamlined tool that improves both the sales experience and conversion rates for clients, and it was created by a group of seasoned home improvement professionals (founder Dan Larkin previously sold Evolve Solar for $50 million and is currently running Encor Solar, the No. 2 winner on our Fastest-Growing Companies list). One-year-old Solo did an astonishing $4 million in sales in 2019, and is on track for $12 million in sales in 2020. 

GOALS 1. “Launch an in-house consumer lending platform.” 2. “Diversify into more home improvement verticals such as HVAC, landscaping, plumbing, windows, siding, etc.” 3. “Participate in the long tail relationship of each consumer.” 


Luckiest Moment “Onboarding a very large early adapter.”

Unluckiest Moment “Copycats entering the space.”

Make Your Own Luck “By understanding where our industry stands at all times, we can be strategic with how we leverage our resources in a way that gives us an unfair advantage over our competitors.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “Opportunity falls on those who grind.”


EddyHR.com FOUNDERS Travis Hansen, 42; Ryan Sagers THE COMPANY An all-in-one HR software solution designed for small- and mid-sized businesses.

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Talk about steady Eddy. EddyHR grew a whopping 580% in revenue from 2018 to 2019 — and that growth is thanks to top-notch leadership (EddyHR’s founder is local basketball great and serial entrepreneur Travis Hansen), stellar software, and a good old fashioned focus on humans (and their resources). 

GOALS 1. “Make lots of money by helping lots of people.” 2.
“Help a million people.” 3. “Make a billion dollars and have fun doing it.”

ADVICE “Find a mentor and hire people who can help you execute your vision.”


Luckiest Moment “My wife.”

Unluckiest Moment “My mom dying of pancreatic cancer.”

Make Your Own Luck “I like to compete and be fun and I surround myself with people who have the same mindset and work ethic.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “Give a piece of crust away and get a loaf of bread back.”


FOUNDED 2015 CITY Pleasant Grove EMPLOYEES 50 INDUSTRY Software WEBSITE Whistic.com FOUNDER Nick Sorensen, 36 THE COMPANY A provider of proactive vendor security software.

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Whistic is a total whiz kid. Vendor security has never been more relevant — and that shows in Whistic’s standout success. The company’s growth rate of ARR is 10x from May 2018 to May 2020, and since its launch in 2019, The Whistic Trust Catalog® has grown 30X, now with more than 15,000 company profiles accessible on-demand. Whistic also raised $12 million in funding, signed Airbnb as one of its first 10 customers, and was recognized as a top company in its market by Gartner’s Magic Quadrant. 

GOALS 1. “There is only one goal. Making the Whistic Profile (for a company) as commonplace as having a LinkedIn profile (for a professional).”

ADVICE “Focus on solving customer problems — not on your solution.”


Luckiest Moment “The introduction of the GDPR regulation.”

Unluckiest Moment“Moving into a new building a few months prior to COVID-19.”

“By continuing to fundraise during the COVID pandemic when we didn’t necessarily need to. It worked out well and we found a terrific partner.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “Attention to security and privacy will pay large dividends.”


FOUNDED 2019 CITY Lehi EMPLOYEES 50 INDUSTRY Accounting/software WEBSITE Avii.com FOUNDERS Lyle Ball, 51; Jason Caldwell, 48; Rod Sturgis, 55 THE
A unified software workspace for tax, audit, advisory, compliance and management consulting.

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Following 20 years of custom development for Big 4 and Top 25 firms, Avii Workspace launched in 2019. The leadership’s unparalleled market knowledge has strategically positioned the company to revolutionize accounting departments across the nation. 

GOALS 1. “Dramatically expand the generally accepted definition of ‘Unified Practice Management Platform.’” 2. “Give accounting firms control of their own data.” 3.
“Set a new high bar and example for the future of work.”

ADVICE “Find the right advisors who will give you the right gut checks as opposed to just telling you, ‘Yes that’s right.’”


Luckiest Moment “Early in the development stage, we secured a significant anchor client that we were able to convert to both revenue and consistent real-world client-fed research that guided the final stages of our development.”

Roll-The-Dice Moment “If you feel like you’re rolling the dice in a massive risk, it’s probably the wrong approach.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “Avii will redefine the future of work through automation, fueling the accounting professional’s migration from a historian of data to a trusted advisor.”


FOUNDED 2019 EMPLOYEES 12  INDUSTRY Healthcare/technology  WEBSITE
TavaHealth.com FOUNDERS Jason Ockey, 31; Cami Allred, 32; Spencer Gardner, 30; Dallen Allred, 32 THE COMPANY A personalized approach to mental health that helps connect people to therapists and helps employers offer mental health services to their employees. 

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Mental health matters. Over 65% of adults with mental illness go untreated, and depression alone costs U.S. employers $100 billion each year. Tava Health is determined to change the conversation and facilitate healthy connections. In just over a year, Tava has signed up 100 Utah employers to help them give their employees access to high-quality, next-day mental health services. Plus, they’ve connected thousands of Utahns with therapists since COVID hit in March.

GOALS 1. “Build consistent, repeatable processes.” 2.
“Expand into new markets.” 3.
“Make therapy normal.”


Luckiest Moment “COVID.”

Unluckiest Moment “COVID.”

Make Your Own Luck “Take a big boulder of a problem and then break it into tiny, tiny rocks.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “When one door closes, another door opens.”


FOUNDED 2016 CITY Provo EMPLOYEES 175 INDUSTRY Dental communication services WEBSITE GetCallForce.com FOUNDER Cory Pinegar, 26 THE COMPANY A dental solutions company that provides communication services for dental offices located throughout the United States. 

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY Hello, service with a smile! In just four short years, CallForce has become a force in the dental industry with fast growth and rising revenue. What sets them apart? This dental communications company is run by real, live people (not software or robots), which gives patients an efficient, personal touch. 

GOALS 1. “100 million patient interactions.” 2. “Continue to rank as one of the best company cultures in the state of Utah.” 3. “Make the Inc 500 fastest growing businesses.”

ADVICE “Focus on fixing problems.” 


Luckiest Moment “Honestly, the fact that we were able to open our doors in 2016 feels extremely lucky to us.”

Roll-The-Dice Moment “We’ve signed large contracts dependent on hiring and training dozens of people in a matter of weeks. Every time I bet on my people, they always come through for me.”

Make Your Own Luck “Work really damn hard and treat everyone really well.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast More calls. More force. More smiles.


FOUNDED 2020 CITY Pleasant Grove EMPLOYEES 14 INDUSTRY Commercial Real Estate WEBSITE MtnWest.com FOUNDERS Cody Black, 38; Karli Black, 38; Chad Moore, 43; Bill Street, 54; Mary Street, 57; Shad Webb, 35 THE COMPANY Mountain West Commercial Real Estate – Utah County (MW-UC) provides service and representation to clients in developing real estate strategy.

WHY IT’S WATCH WORTHY We don’t get named the top economy in the nation without traffic and skyline changes to match. MW-UC helps business find their home sweet headquarters, and the new firm is a partnership of Uber-producing brokers who’ve created an entrepreneurial brokerage environment where they can be flexible, nimble and responsive to market conditions and client needs. This Utah County brokerage started in 2020, but partnered with a long-time name in the industry: Mountain West Commercial Real Estate.

GOALS 1. “Don’t be the biggest — be the best.” 2. “Earn our clients’ trust — then continue to deserve it.” 3. “Use our talents to serve our community. All boats rise with the tide.”

ADVICE “You seldom hit it big by playing it safe. Be bold.”


Make Your Own Luck “We put ourselves in the way of opportunity and are prepared to get caught up in it.”

Fortune Cookie Forecast “Your clients become wealthy when they follow your guidance.”

THE FINE PRINT The Startups to Watch list is selected from a pool of applicants with less than four years of operating history. The winners and rankings were determined by BusinessQ’s editorial board based on revenue, leadership teams, industry and overall potential.