Haggle: to bargain persistently, usually over the cost of something
Gabriel Quiroz, senior management and international business major, is exploring the new opportunities for undergraduates in the tech field. Quiroz competed in last year’s innovation contest sponsored by the School of Business. His app, created with his business partner senior Graham Rose, won first place. It was an app that searched for jobs with an algorithm that analyzed graduating seniors’ social media data. Currently, Quiroz is interning at Haggle, a startup app company. He sat down with me for an interview about his internship and passion for the tech field post-graduation.
Carolyn Quest: Tell me about the app Haggle and how you got involved in the startup business.
Gabriel Quiroz: Startups are something I really want to go into after I graduate, and so in the summer of 2013 there was a New York tech show, and I went there and made different contacts. Haggle was one of the companies that was there. They invited me to their launch party. When they launched I sat down and chatted with the CEO and he wanted to bring me on board. I went in for an interview and got the job.
C: How does Haggle work?
Q: We collect people’s social media information so we can measure their history level of the restaurants that they’ve gone to, their loyalty to those particular places, and their influence, so how many people like their Facebook statuses or retweet them. We also track their bankroll, so how much money they tend to spend when they go out. We collect this info so when you’re using Haggle in a particular area, we can push restaurants that we think you’d be interested in.
Then you use your social media information so you can get a bargain or a discount generated specifically for you. You can haggle for any kind of discount you want by turning the dial on the app. It negotiates the offer. If you get it you bring it to the restaurant and they give you the discount, all because of your social media.
C: If you don’t use your social media to promote the restaurant, then you won’t get the deal?
Q: Unfortunately no. But the cool thing about it is that entrepreneurship is shifting. Business is now more of a tool for social problems, and right now one of the biggest social problems is that social media companies are collecting your information and selling it to other companies so they can sell products to you. It’s not an accident that whenever you go on Amazon you see a sweater that you like on the side column, and they’re suggesting you to buy it. They’re controlling what you’re seeing. So now we’re taking advantage of your data and we’re giving you the power to do what you want with it.
C: How does Haggle get your information?
Q: You sign up through Facebook or Twitter.
C: Is the App free?
Q: Yes, you can download it on your iPhone. Technically everything has a cost, so you have to pay with your social media. But it gives you the power so you can use your data for your own benefit.
C: Are there restaurants in the Riverdale area that are connected the app?
Q: Right now we have P&K Grill, or Piper’s Kilt signed up, so students can try it there. And the Bronx Alehouse just signed up. We’re trying to get Jake’s Steakhouse, we’re in negotiations with them and Yo-Burger.