Building a Shopping Solution

I have been involved in ShopCo Holdings just about two months now as the Chief Executive Officer.   I figured it is about time I start sharing a bit about it.

ShopCo Holdings is a company backed by 12 large US Media companies to bring innovative shopping solutions to their historical local audiences.

It is an exciting opportunity to bring back the fun to shopping across the web, social, mobile, and of course on your couch with tablets.  With the backing of  Advance, A.H. Belo, CNHI, Cox, E.W. Scripps, Gannett, Gatehouse, Hearst, Lee Enterprises, McClatchy, Media News Group and the Washington Post, we now have over 176 newspaper sites using the FindnSave platform and expect to break 200 soon covering the majority of the Sunday audience for shopping.   We are fast at work to bring a new solution to market across Mobile, Social, and the Web that will enable fun discovery of shopping opportunities across the entire country from San Francisco to Mobile.

It has been a blast from building out a team, but alot of work as we have had to make some tough decisions to clean up the focus of the business.

From figuring out the fastest way to get from headquarter in Silicon Valley up to our operations in Chico, Ca (hint it is not a car and leaves from Palo Alto Airport and is rather scary) to figuring out what an FSI is, there has been alot of learning.

We have found a few things:

  • Shopping is supposed to be fun and all about discovery not price comparison and search.
  • Mobile changes everything, and a tablet on your couch is an even bigger deal.
  • We have a great team that is growing everyday.  If you care about shopping and want to build cool stuff, reach out.
  • The media companies and our advertisers are 10 times as innovative as Silicon Valley gives them credit for and hold sway over incredible content and audiences.

If you want to work with us, you all know I am a relationship focused entrepreneur and I look forward to discovery opportunities to work with you.

Just reach out to us. We are a company built on the partnership of 12 of the largest media companies in the country and look forward to extending the partnership to anyone who can help us bring fun social discovery shopping solutions to 50MM consumers.

A good place to connect my annual event where we shoot some Trap and have some Chardonnay.    So I hope you can find you way to Shotguns and Chardonnay.

Finally, ShopCo Holdings is a pretty tough name to identify with so we are working on a new one. is one on the list as it recognizes the heritage of our investors, back to year the first ad placed in a newspaper in  the Boston News-Letter.

Let me know what you think about it. Or better yet if you have a better name.

About Ben T. Smith, IV

Founder of, investor in and advisor to technology and media companies
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