Los Angeles Business Journal

Ex-Whisper CTO Launches Recommendation App

By Omar Shamout Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Knowzz, a business recommendation app founded by Steve Sobolevsky, former chief technology officer at Whisper, has launched its 1.0 version for iPhone and Android.

The app lets users upload the names of recommended businesses and service providers stored in their phones for sharing with others. People can then search curated categories of businesses their friends have suggested.

Sobolevsky said the app differs from sites like Yelp because it does not offer anonymous reviews, and it allows people to find services that may not be listed on Yelp.

“We are 100-percent a word-of-mouth recommendation service,” he said in an interview.

The app, which had been operating in a testing mode since December, launched today and has several thousand users. The Santa Monica company has fewer than 10 employees and is operating on a small round of funding raised from friends and family.

Sobolevsky said the company will be seeking a seed round of capital in the coming months from angel investors that will go toward product development and marketing.

He said Knowzz will start earning advertising revenue by the end of the year.