STEALZ | Startup Poker
The Interbrew's first season kicks off with Jim Zidar, the CEO of one of the Triangle's fastest growing startups - Stealz. Jim gets a mid-day visit from Kyle, Jared and three varieties of Big Boss Brewing. Everything from 90s rap music to gas station showers is discussed as Jim recounts the journey that landed Stealz a spot on Scot Wingo's "Tweeners to Watch" list.
When's the last time you pulled out your phone to take a picture of your food? If you're honest with yourself, it was probably extremely recent...like yesterday. No need to be ashamed - we all do it. However, while you were figuring out which filter makes that melted cheese on top of your loaded nachos glimmer the most, a team of young entrepreneurs was cooking up a way to turn your picture into dollar signs.
Stealz is a mobile app that rewards it's users' social sharing with freebies at their favorite restaurants, bars and hangouts. So, when you Instagram that picture of nachos you're earning points towards a redeemable reward at that restaurant. By capturing user photos, tweets and posts and auto-tagging the restaurant in it, Stealz is turning customers into brand ambassadors. This model of one part rewards program, one part marketing analytics platform has landed the Raleigh startup an impressive client list with behemoths like McDonalds, Taco Bell, Applebee's, and Denny's. To date, more than a half a million photos have been shared by over 100,000 different people on Stealz. With 75 new businesses popping up on Stealz every month expect a lot more pictures of food.
All this traction didn't come without it's ups and downs. From four friends sleeping in cars and showering at gas stations, to thousands of users and $1.5 million in funding, the Stealz journey is a classic tale of grit and determination. As Stealz continues to grow globally (you can use the app in 5 countries) they're proud to be rooted in the supportive Raleigh entrepreneurial community. Show a local startup some love and showcase your photography skills by downloading Stealz today!