Pitch Perfect: RadPad
Our team has been building and investing in companies since 2004, and consequently have sat through A LOT of pitch meetings. While there is no shortage of good ideas, there is a shortage of entrepreneurs who deliver those ideas confidently and in convincing ways. Pitch Perfect is an opportunity to peek into the board room to get a look at the best recently-launched companies in Silicon Beach.
Jonathan Eppers launched his company RadPad just last week, and we already are feeling the heat that its buzz is generating. And with good reason. Eppers, a former product guy at Myspace, eHarmony, and Edelman, has spent the past several years developing a keen understanding of what makes a great user experience. RadPad is Eppers’ attempt to impart that wisdom on the rental sector of the real-estate industry, a market that he asserts has seen a lack of innovation in recent years.
Check out how Eppers and his team plan to help you find your next rad pad.
Basic Info:Company/Position: RadPad / Founder & Head of ProductHometown/Current City:Los AngelesEducation: Purdue University / Computer Graphics TechnologyEntrepreneurial Icon: Jack DorseyWords to Live By: Talent is a gift. Character is a choice.
RadPad is the first and only photo-based rental application. Using our iPhone app, a renter can instantly see nearby rentals while also setting up a custom search based on filters like location, price, bedroom & bathroom. RadPad’s goal is to help renters easily find a great place to live and then quickly secure the rental and move in. We also make it easy for property owners to list a rental on RadPad.
I’ve been building consumer web and mobile products for the last six years at companies like MySpace and eHarmony. At heart, I’m a product guy who obsesses over things like the user experience and product design. I like to take things that are complex and figure out how to make them super simple so that even my mom, who knows nothing about technology, can use it without me telling her how it works. I don’t ship products with instructions & tutorials. That would be a failure.
There’s no better feeling than taking an idea and bringing it to life. I really only work on things that I’m both passionate about and use myself. I have a very high bar for quality and execution and it makes it more fun because you end up getting a much better product. The team I work with also obsesses over things that most people wouldn’t think twice about. We’ll have an hour discussion on something like what icon to use for a button or what copy a user sees on a sign up form. A great product comes from a great team behind the product. When the team believes in what they’re doing you end up creating magic.
There’s an unbelievable feeling that comes from working for companies like MySpace and eHarmony in that they have millions of users so when you launch a new product feature, you get instant feedback on it. However, while I’ve been a significant contributor to the roadmaps and product features at these companies, I’ve always felt somewhat constrained in that I’m not running the business and ultimately deciding what to focus the team on. With RadPad, I’m able to take much bigger risks with the product and because our team is small, we’re able to iterate and move much faster. As an example, we built RadPad in ten weeks. It might have taken four/five months at another company.
Most people tend to think that working from home or being able to do what you want during the day is the best case scenario. I would disagree. I thrive being around other people who pour their hearts in to their work. Every morning the team comes over and we work out of my place. Since we started doing his, our dev cycles have increased dramatically, we’re shipping faster and ultimately, our users are getting a better product. We’re all excited at the potential of having our own place one day.
We’re a mission driven company. We’re doing this because we really believe that everyone deserves to find a great place to live. Innovation in this space has stalled and I believe that’s primarily because most of the rental services that exist were created by people in the rental industry. Ultimately the property owners are going to list their places where the renters are, so our focus is on creating an experience that puts control into the hands of the renters. I’m very excited at what we’re going to be releasing in the next couple of months.
I’ve been in Los Angeles now for five years and I’ve never been more excited about what’s going on down here. What LA needs is some really sexy, breakout companies (consumer focused) that show outsiders that there are some really talented people working on some really complex and challenging problems. Seeing Google, Twitter and Facebook investing in Los Angeles is also very exciting because it continues to up the level of talent down here. I mean, why would you live in San Francisco when we have the best weather in the country? LA is just getting started.