Shawn Geller's story comes to mind when Quicken Loans Chairman Dan Gilbert talks about remaking downtown Detroit into a hub for technology start-ups that draws the best and brightest from across North America.
The CEO & co-founder of Quikkly
, an Internet start-up, is originally from Philadelphia where the young man recently graduated from Temple University with a degree in finance and entrepreneurship. He pitched his idea for Quikkly to Detroit Venture Partners
, the downtown Detroit-based venture capital firm, and soon after found himself moving to Detroit to chase his entrepreneurial hopes and dreams.
"I decided to go out on a limb and move out here," Geller says. "I left everything behind. My fiancee was living in Philadelphia until I got her to move here two weeks ago."
Quikkly is now a Detroit Venture Partners portfolio company and is based out of the M@dison Building
. It is developing software that helps big brands harness their customers' motivations. Geller saw people standing in lines in front of stores for hours during big shopping days like Black Friday to score the best deals. He wants to offer a way for those same shoppers to take advantage of those same deals but only doing it online.
"We start (the product) out at a very low price for the first moves movers and the price goes up the longer the sale goes on," Geller says. "Us being able to offer it at a lower price point helps us feed the frenzy for these products."
Quikkly is at the tail end of developing its software and has already begun offering some deals online to the general public about one every week or two. The 9-month-old firm expects to do a large launch within the next three months.
Source: Shawn Geller, co-founder of Quikkly
Writer: Jon Zemke