2014 – Has been all about SWARM, we’re up and running, revenue generating, and now a team of five. We also have this lovely blog called Whiteboard. As with everything it’s been a lot of work. We also open sourced Exversion, you can learn more about that here.
2013 – Startup Bus – In March 2013 I took the startup bus down from NYC to SXSW. In the process myself, Marianne and Tal built an amazing product called Exversion, which we interviewed with YC for, landed a spot at Lowenstein’s First Growth Venture Network, Friends of eBay and a finalist spot at TechCrunch Disrupt Battlefield. After Startup Bus’ culmination a bunch of us hacked together a new project called Drunkspotting, with 46 CEOs and managed to partner with ÜBER and serendipitously come up with a new company formation and product acceleration model, which eventually lead to SWARM, a group of 30 or so folks in tech who build amazing things together.
2012 – CartoDB / Vizzuality – During the spring of 2012, I went to a BBQ in Brooklyn and met Javier de la Torre, CEO of Vizzuality, we got to talking about LBS, and I became intrigued in what they were doing. A few months later I joined their team as semi-interim Head of Marketing / CMO + Strategy Guy. The product is phenomenal and if you’re visualizing data or building any form of a geospatial application, CartoDB is a total must.
2012 – Party Up Gamer – A for fun side project that acts as a matching service for gamers. The problem is that while online and multiplayer games are inherently social, however the random pairing you have now on platforms such as XBOX Live, PSN, Steam, GameSpy leaves a lot to be desired in terms of finding like minded people to play with. If you have an XBL Avatar, play some Avatar Hot or Not
2010 – Badger – After moving back to the U.S., I met with an old friend from H.S. who’d recently finished NYU’s ITP program and we got to building Badger the service was a consumer engagement platform for brands and raised a small seed round.
2009 – F3FundIt (Friends Family Fools Fund It) and Next Top Startup – I began writing a European focused startup blog in 2009 that saw incredible 100% week on week growth in its early days and still sees a good amount of traffic even though it’s no longer managed.
To capitalize on it’s growth myself and a colleague came up with an idea to hold a non industry specific global entrepreneurship competition in Barcelona alongside HIT Barcelona and the city’s Day of the Entrepreneur initiative. With the help of the Barcelona Chamber of Commerce, Biz Barcelona, CEO-CF, Maroon Analytics, Barcelona Activa and with sponsors such as the Damm Brewery and Freixenet the event called Next Top Startup commenced with a great success, bringing in businesses from the U.S., Brazil, South Africa along with a handful of European countries.
During this process we intended to refashion F3FundIt into a global entrepreneurship portal and brought the idea of the platform in front of the city and ESADE, however, with little time due to financial constraints, and no outside investment the idea folded. While not pretty, you can check out our concept on Slideshare.
2008 – Times were tough and jobs were scarce, which is why myself and a few MBA colleagues formed Plain White Paper, a freelance collective based out of London, Barcelona, Munich and NYC. The company was closed in 2013 after my engagement with CartoDB and is now SWARM. In my spare time, I worked on Project Travel (defunct) – whose intent was to create a social travel guide using group recommendations and user generated content, where participants could drag and drop content into ad hoc itineraries and print them as PDF’s. We managed to build a travel blog network, and participated in Seed Rocket, a Spanish based start-up competition. I heard that TripAdvisor is just now conceptually developing something along these lines.
2006 – I Go Radio (defunct) – The iPhone was released in June of 2007, in 2006 myself and a classmate at ESADE had the idea for I Go Radio, a phone app that would allow you listen to your terrestrial radio stations wherever you were in the world as long as you had a persistent GPRS connection, and allowed you to buy a song that would then download to your desktop.
In 2006 there were no apps and no iOS development, and after conducting our initial research we figured we simply didn’t have the network necessary to 1. persuade manufacturers to install the app on their devices, that 2. the cost of data was too high for the average consumer to use the product, and that 3. the fragmentation of OS’ on manufacturers phones was too high to produce a product that would gain widespread acceptance. If anything Clear Channel’s I Heart Radio, proved our idea was right on the money.
2002 – The Short List (sold)– Before Yelp was Yelp, there was the Short List. A Columbia MBA founded startup that took local reviews and recommendations from various neighborhoods in Manhattan, and made them into easy to carry pocket books. I wanted to bring the service online, the founder wanted to keep it physical, this along with reasons of a financial nature made me leave in 2004, in 2005 the company was sold to Time Out.
1998 – Absolutely Ridiculous – What today would be called a blog, was in the mid-late 90’s called a zine, and in 1998 there was yet a thing called LiveJournal, and PHP had just appeared on the scene three years before, and the entire thing was hard coded in HTML with templates for posts and pages. Man, what I wouldn’t have done for a
But the site was a collection of all the funny and ridiculous stuff being sent out through the early days of the interwebs. I still somewhat wish I’d kept the domain.