By going after these perceived deficiencies, the outcome, Parise says, was Events.com, a cloud based SaaS product that connects MEGs and LEOs (modern event goers and local event organizers) in ways that are different than any other service provider that’s out there.
According to Parise, the major differences that make Events.com unique are threefold. “First, it’s truly a mobile-first, cloud based service that can be used anywhere on any device. Second, it boasts real social engagement and sharing tools for both the event organizer and the event participant. Finally, it’s completely scalable which means anyone can take advantage of the service.”
In essence, Events.com has the same functionality as its competitors, but with an enhanced and more modern user experience.
“It’s very intuitive and it only gets more and more user friendly,” Parise says. “Our whole goal is to have anybody who’s looking to put on an event be equipped with outreach marketing and monetization capabilities. So, it’s the best of both worlds–enterprise and self service solutions.”
Parise and Thrower accomplished this by putting to good use the mistakes and shortcomings they say they saw from existing players in the space such as Active.com. “There were a lot of challenges the incumbent was going through,” Parise says. “Everything from customer upheaval to workers leaving.”
“Much of the team we assembled came from Active. Everything from sales people, to systems architects, to a project manager. Everyone knew all of the challenges of things they couldn’t do. We went out to find domain experts from around the industry to tackle those challenges and, as a result, built a much broader, much wider platform.”
TURKEY RUN ANYONE?
Events.com targets three main verticals. First is participatory sport and endurance events. “These are your triathlons, mud runs, color runs, turkey trots, etc.,” says Parise. “Because our model is scalable, it means a single individual can launch a 5K fundraiser all the way up to an enterprise level organization that has upward of 100 events a year in different cities on different continents.”
Events.com’s second and third targeted verticals are festivals (food, wine, beer fests, etc.) and the corporate space. While sports and endurance events have been their bread and butter for the most part (Parise says they’re engaged with several enterprise level multi-million dollar companies in the endurance vertical but couldn’t name names due to NDAs), Parise also says, “As the product becomes more feature rich, we can really start to broaden our focus into the other verticals I mentioned.”
Thinking ahead to the future growth of Events.com causes Parise to reflect back on his MBA days at USC. “Thinking back to any of the case studies and the decision making they prepared us to deploy; it’s truly validated. The education that I got from my MBA at USC has allowed me to make excellent, well-informed decisions. Not only based on my historical background as an equity trader, but other areas that are vital to strategic decision making.”
“With that said, I have to give the old USC cheer: ‘Fight On!’”
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