I started Snooth on November 17, 2006 -- nearly four years ago to the day. Since then, we've raised several million dollars in financing, built the team to 20 and figured out the business model sufficiently to get us to profitability. We've undergone pivots, hit dead ends, failed (lots) and ultimately navigated our way down a successful path.
Snooth was originally conceived as an in-store kiosk company. The idea was that retailers would rent Snooth kiosks, which would function as "digital sommeliers." Customers would scan a bottle and the kiosk would display information about the wine. Snooth.com was built as a showcase to highlight the technology. Luckily, the demo site took off, iPhones and other smartphones were released, and the idea of the kiosk fell by the wayside. Looking back, I'm glad I'm not involved in renting and maintaining kiosk hardware.
Today, Snooth is a media company. In June of this year, we launched a second brand, TheSpir.it, focused on spirits and cocktails. We expect to continue to expand our range of products over the coming years.
I've known Rich for several years, and he's truly the ideal person to lead Snooth to continued success. He comes to Snooth with 15 years of proven success in the digital media world, from Digital Strategy at CNN to leading the digital food division (including MyRecipes and CookingLight.com) of Time Inc. to great success.
Rich has years of accumulated "best practices," and at the same time he "gets" startups and fits well into Snooth's culture. In the short time he's been here, he's run through walls, signed a ton of new partnerships, and led to a 50% increase in traffic. We're all excited.
Rich's joining allows me to focus on what I do best: strategy and product. I'll still be here every day, but I won't be involved in the day-to-day running of this growing media company.
Please join me in welcoming Rich.