Keeping in line with our objective, we've highlighted another influential speaker to consider at the upcoming Chicago Ideas Week.
In this profile: Bo Fishback
Accolades: Bo Fishback is the Founder and CEO of Zaarly, a proximity based, real-time buyer- powered market. Sound confusing? It isn’t - buyers make an offer for an immediate need, and sellers cash in on an infinite marketplace for items and services they never knew were for sale.
Or, as one article states, “Zaarly helps to connect people through one-off jobs, such as standing in line for a popular breakfast place or finding a toaster oven.”
Maybe more notably, Fishback is the former vice president of entrepreneurship for the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the president of Kauffman Labs for Enterprise Creation.
Why you should care: He’s no slouch. Fishback’s also founder of Orbis Biosciences - a drug delivery and particle fabrication company, developed from research conducted at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He’s a co-founder of Lightspeed Genomics, a next-generation genome sequencing company that was spun out of a research program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and acquired by Macrogen. He has worked with a variety of life sciences and high-tech startup companies as an advisor, board member, and angel investor.
Whatever Fishback touches turns to gold, and his quotes are interesting and fun:
He says of Zaarly: “We avoid Craigslist’s problems with sex workers by filtering out posts. We manually approve every post and we also filter for code words that we find on Craigslist. We have a five point “perv” scale.”
“We’re hiring like mad: engineers, marketing people with hyper-local experience; analytics — because we’re accumulating a sea of data.”
‘“People are using Zaarly for a kind of blind date, meeting people in their communities. There are lots of couples doing jobs together. I’m not sure why that is except that it’s fun. I ran into a couple who said they were on their first “Zaarly date.”’
“Big brands have contacted us to see how they can use Zaarly. I don’t know yet, I’m hoping they can tell us.”
Brilliance and humor: it’s part of Chicago Ideas Week.
Where you can see him: To be determined but check back here for more info on Fishback, and other Chicago Ideas Week speakers and events.