Right off the vine It’s almost five o’clock here, so why not check out the brand new wine site Grape Collective? Launched by former New York Observer president Christopher Barnes and former editor-in-chief of the Tasting Table Nick Fauchald, Grape Collective helps users find wines at the right price and educates them about those vinos Read More
the startup rundown
SHUTTER. Luminance is not your average photography conference. Instead of focusing on the latest gear, this two-day program will bring together experts at the forefront of the technology we use to create, manipulate and share our images. Among the speakers are Behance founder Scott Belsky, Hipstamatic cofounder Lucas Allen Buick, Google’s Chris Chabot, Pulitzer prize winning photographer Barbara Davidson, Tumblr
CEO president John Maloney, Facebook Photos engineer Srinivas Narayanan and the School of Visual Art’s David Ross. All speakers will present a 20-minute TED-style lecture.
TOE, HEEL, TOE, HEEL. What Not to Wear‘s Stacy London is the cofounder of a just-launched site that aims to connect personal stylists with the stylistically clueless. Style For Hire stylists will perform a “closet audit,” provide personal shopping services or create new outfits out of clothes a customer already has—that’s called closet shopping. Now women who aren’t lucky enough to be on the show can still have their closets—and lack of fashion sense—torn apart, but without the benefit of a judgmental, national audience.
Do It For the Kiddies
Finally, there’s a feel-good reason to keep the Jeremy Lin puns coming. SeatGeek and Breadpig have teamed up to give away two tickets to the Knicks-Cavalier’s game at Madison Square Garden next Wednesday, February 29th . . . aaaaaand the chance to experience the Linsanity alongside Reddit cofounder and “all around good guy” Alexis Ohanian. (Those aren’t scare quotes, Mr. Ohanian really is the nicest, but we like that goodness is listed as part of his appeal.)
The philanthropic collabo is being facilitated by DonorsChoose.org. Mr. Ohanian told Betabeat that he will soon be joining the startup’s advisory board. “WOO for NY startups,” he emailed. Since this is for a good cause, we’ll refrain from asking him to step away from the pom-poms. Anyone who makes a donation of $10 or more towards physical education projects in New York City schools is eligible to win the tickets. The initiative, which did a soft launch last Friday, has already raised $1,561. Deadline for donations is next Monday at midnight.
TiqIQ, the Times Square-based aggregator for live event ticketing, just announced a funding raise today: $1.7 million led by Contour Venture Partners, with Inovia Capital participating. The site, which has six employees in New York and another nine in Tel Aviv, was started in 2009. Until now, it’s been chugging along on angel investment and the revenue it’s now generating from partnerships with 1,000 publishers including SBNation, the Washington Post and New York Post, which CEO Jesse Lawrence says comes out to between $2 and $5 million.
What Should I Do?
We give you the heads up on SeatGeek’s stealth project Columbus back in October. The service, which recommends sports and concerts to users, kind of like a Pandora for live events, launched today to the public.
Betabeat was working this morning and not looking for Knicks tickets on company time when we wandered over to SeatGeek, the hometown sports tickets aggregator, and typed in a search for NBA games. In the event you haven’t heard: NBA players and team owners recently announced a tentative agreement to restart the season on December 25 after a long contract negotiation stalemate ended. Imagine our surprise when we saw what appeared to be a normal season.
Ticketing site SeatGeek has been on a tear recently, announcing big traffic growth and a partnership with Yahoo. Now the startup is taking the rich data set it built up selling tickets for sporting events and concerts and branching out to recommendations, creating a service called “Columbus” to help users find games and concerts they didn’t know about but might enjoy.
First Hand Advice
This is a guest post from SeatGeek co-founder Russell D’Souza.
Prior to moving offices in early June, SeatGeek worked first out of Soho Haven (now Projective Space) and then at General Assembly, two shared office spaces in New York. In the early days of SeatGeek, shared office space was a complete no-brainer, but what was much less clear was when to “graduate” to our own office space. Since many startups have been asking us about this of late, I thought we’d break down some of the criteria we evaluated when making this decision.
Look at Me!
Working at SeatGeek is sort of like joining a team of ninja killers. To enter the fold, you must prove yourself worthy.
When the startup was looking to hire a backend developer, for example, they received hundreds of bad applications for the few open slots. So they devised a challenge that would eliminate posers. Read More
Felix Delgado really wants to be an intern at SeatGeek, and why not? The General Assembly graduate is crushing it, having recently signed a big partnership with Yahoo Sports and outpacing their older, better funded rivals.
Assuming that it would be a crowded field, Mr. Delgado crafted a custom ticket stub. The front is a custom message to the founders with a QR code linking back to a FAQ page on Mr. Delgado’s website, wherein he asks (and answers!) questions about why he is perfect for the position at SeatGeek. The back is his resume.
“Over achiever of the year,” tweeted out SeatGeek’s Ben Kessler.