May 24, 2013
What they do:
Website helping people find the best parking locations and lowest rates in major cities.
In 2004, Benjamin Sann was just 16 when he had an epiphany during an episode of Seinfeld. It was the one where George can't find a cheap parking space. Sann knew the area well and set out on two wheels to find the best parking locations and lowest rates in Manhattan.
About the business:
BestParking.com is a free online parking search engine that steers drivers towards the cheapest, most convenient parking sites. From New York, it has expanded to seven of the nation's largest cities, and all major airports. Sinn offers reservations on daily and monthly parking spots, and gets a financial cut from the deals. Over 100,000 motorists rely on the website each month.
The entrepreneurs behind Justin.tv thought they were going to revolutionize online entertainment and conquer television. That didn’t happen, exactly. But they did end up stumbling onto a niche that they never would have anticipated: video games as a spectator sport.
He started his first business in college. He sold his second business to Clear Channel. He came within four minutes of winning CBS’s the Amazing Race. He’s led an interesting life, but what Blake Mycoskie is best known for is starting TOMS Shoes, the company that has donated well over a million shoes to needy men, women, and children.
Jake Zien was a 17 year old with a quirky idea for a flexible power strip. Ben Kaufman was a 19 year with a start-up and a vision of harnessing ideas just like Jake’s.
Now, thanks to Kaufman’s invention crowdsourcing site Quirky, Zien and other inventors like him are seeing their products go from sketchpad to store shelf faster than they can say “perpetual royalties.”
Is it just me, or is the world ending? Hackers recently took down the CIA website and broke into the United States Senate’s public. Last month it was Sony’s Playstation network. Before that it was the still-at-large group of rogue hackers known as Anonymous. Hackers have been around for as long as there have been computers and networks to hack. But the problem seems to be escalating. More and more high profile networks and databases are being compromised. All the more troubling is just how much of our personal information some of these databases have, often without our realizing it….
It’s no secret that businesses and corporations are always looking forward. The next big product, the next big innovation, the next quarterly report. And yet, many businesses have histories as rich and fascinating as anything you’d find in a history book. Is there any money to be made in preserving your company’s legacy?