We mean the very small screen. The one on your smartphone.And you get paid to watch this content.
Slidejoy is an Android app that brings relevant content, coupons and deals to users’ smart phones – and brands and content providers get a totally opt-in audience.
The content is also location-based and considering how often we check our phones, talk about a targeted audience…
CEO and cofounder Robert Seo talks about the company, the funding and FYI, he also completed an Ironman triathlon. Then again, don’t you almost have to be in shape to go the distancein this industry?
Who were your investors?
Members of the Wharton Angel Network and Harvard Business School Angels led the round. Our investors include entrepreneurs and investors who have previously invested in companies with billion dollar exits.
Tell us about your product.
Slidejoy is an Android app that rewards users for renting out their lock screens as an interactive newsfeed (think of it like a digital billboard).Every time you check your Android phone, you will see a card with a news story or promotion on your lock screen.
-Slide UP to see another card
-Slide RIGHT to ignore the card and go to your home screen
-Slide LEFT to get more information on the contents of the card
It’s kind of like Tinder, except with Slidejoy, you get paid, and with Tinder, you get laid. 🙂
What market you are targeting and how big is it?
Since 2011, Amazon has been selling a discounted version of its Kindle for $15-20 cheaper than the regular version. The difference between the two is that the discounted version shows content, deals and ads on the lockscreen. Funny thing is that the discounted version outsells the regular version for every single model.
We show content, deals and ads on Android lockscreens. Over half the smartphone users in the US are on Android that percentage is much higher outside the US. We’re talking about a very big market.
How do you propose to save the world by swiping via Slidejoy?/ What inspired you to start the company?
Our vision is to make mobile service/apps/devices free for the world. Imagine if you can get free streaming music or credits to your phone bill just for having Slidejoy on your phone. In developing countries, imagine if people could afford a smartphone and access the internet, simply because they have Slidejoy. We’re constantly looking to provide value to our users outside of just some extra spending money and the potential opportunities are what motivate us to keep going.
What’s your business model?
We provide advertisers access to the most frequently accessed and most valuable screen, while providing our users easy access to relevant content and promotions.
What was the funding process like?
Fundraising is like the opposite of dating. While fundraising, you’re looking for an ideal partner, but while dating you’re looking for an ideal partner. When put that way, I guess they’re pretty much the same thing.
What are the biggest challenges that you faced while raising capital?
I’m not sure the challenges are any different from those of anybody else who is starting a company. But what’s important is that you continue to learn and improve.
What factors about your business led your investors to write the check?
Our team. I’m very lucky to have a very good team of developers. Bios below.
-Over 600 million Android downloads. Cofounder, HovanYoo, was the lead Android developer of chatting app, Line
-Over 5 million iOS downloads. Cofounder, Jay Chung, developed various apps (including South Korea’s first smartphone messaging app) before dropping out from his Wharton MBA
-Our website analytics were built by cofounder, Mike Kwak, who collects degrees in his spare time. He has a BS/MS from Stanford in Computer Science and an MBA/MA from Wharton and Penn
-Jin-eon Kim is our utility man. He has made apps (iOS and Android) and created servers with millions of users while working at companies like Nexon
-Our proprietary ad server and machine learning algorithm were built by an International Physics Olympiad Bronze Medalist and Stanford PhD
-I’m the only non-developer. I served as a US Marine during the initial invasion of Iraq in 2003 and have since worked at firms on Wall Street (Goldman Sachs and UBS), received an MBA from the Wharton School, completed an Ironman Triathlon, raised $20,000 for various charities, rang the NASDAQ Opening Bell and am now a cofounder and CEO of Slidejoy.
What are the milestones you plan to achieve in the next six months?
I’d say grow our userbase from hundreds of thousands to million(s).
What advice can you offer companies in New York that do not have a fresh injection of capital in the bank?
Hustle and grind.
Where do you see the company going now over the near term?
In the immediate term, as I mentioned, we’re focused on growing our userbase, but we’re also growing our ad sales team.
What’s your favorite NY bar, when you need to kick back and relax?
It depends on how Korean I feel at the time. If I’m feeling especially Korean, I will go to 3rd Floor or SojuHaus. If not, I’ll chill out at Play.