Karri Zaremba’s equation for success is part military precision, part entrepreneurial creativity. She’s chief operating officer of her fifth startup, Venuetize, and the mobile platform integration company is attracting high-profile clients such as the Miami Dolphins and the PGA Tour.
She sharpened her leadership skills during her time as a U.S. Naval Academy student and couples a “get-it-done” drive with innate curiosity. She bores easily, she says, and thrives in organizations where room exists to innovate and grow.
“I tried working at large companies but often I could see holes that I wasn’t in a position to fix,” she says. “I tend to thrive where there’s possibility.”
She saw an opportunity during a technology conference that featured compelling advancements. The tech was exciting but the platforms weren’t seamlessly integrated. The idea for Venuetize, which streamlines a guest’s experience by working with existing venue information, was born.
A “Venuetized” experience is personalized for each client. Imagine you’re a Dolphins fan (sorry, Tampa Bay Bucaneers’ devotees). It’s game day. You’re lounging on the couch and your phone alerts you to news content about the upcoming game. Come tailgate time, parking details make finding that perfect spot easy. Without having to open the corresponding application, your ticket appears and is ready for scanning. A discount activates when you’re near a concession stand, which inspires you to purchase hot dogs.
“We want people to spend less time on the logistics of an experience and more time enjoying it,” Zaremba says.
Still considered a startup, Venuetize has recorded revenue for 2018 at $4 million and $2 million in 2017. The company has traction outside the sports arena, including casinos, restaurants, retail spaces and more.
“We’re able to make the experience highly personal,” she says. “Your experience is going to be different based on where you are and what’s happening at that time.”
Basing the national company in Tampa made sense. The company compared costs with technology meccas like Silicon Valley and New York and found the Tampa Bay Area to be cost-effective.
It hasn’t been difficult to attract employees to Tampa, Zaremba says, and she herself loves the climate, cost of living and ease of airport travel.
“I love creating something out of nothing and making it a reality,” she says.