The company of the day is Looppa SA, based in Argentina. Looppa identifies the latent opportunity for most organizations to develop branded communities. You will find below an interview with Fisher Johni, the Co-founder of Looppa SA. All the best to them and congrats for being the startup of the day!

Website: www.looppa.com.

Interview with Fisher Johni, the Co founder of Looppa SA

Who are you?

Co founder of Looppa SA.

How do you feel being the most promising ‘company of the day’ per Microsoft?

Our team would feel great and proud, both for ourselves and for the Argentinean software community.

What did you do before creating your company?

Marketing and real estate development.

What do you sell? What is your company’s mission?

Looppa has created a unique platform that can add branded Social Community capabilities in existing sites, providing them with the highest level of technical tools and applications. All these will improve their site, turning it into an amazing interactive home base for their ecosystem (Clients/users) quickly and cost-effectively!

Looppa identifies the latent opportunity for most organizations to develop branded communities to better exploit their tangible and intangible assets (audiences, brands, products, clients, etc.). The core of Looppa’s strategy lies in the B2B space, where companies already have an existing group of members waiting to be energized as a social network. This can be the audience of a TV show/radio program, the newspaper/magazine subscribers, the loyal consumers of a product, or the clients of any company, which as a community could be more interactive with its clients. Looppa builds the agreed upon community with each of its partners, who can concentrate on their traditional core businesses, while leaving Looppa to monetize this untapped source of revenue generation.

What is your market?

Although our technology is applicable to a wide range of industries, we are focusing initially on traditional media companies – television networks, radio stations, printed media, etc. Media companies have a tremendous asset base in their viewership or subscribers, but the traditional advertising models are no longer generating enough revenues in the face of competition from web-based alternatives. Looppa gives them a way to actively engage their customers in well-defined segments (special interests such as sports, finance, arts & entertainment, as well as by geography), allowing them to monetize their client base through greater loyalty and a platform for higher-value, targeted advertising.

Any clients? References? Partners?

• Televisa (Mexico)

• Patito Feo (Argentinean TV show for kids) – see Microsoft case study - http://www.microsoft.com/conosur/casosexito/caso/patito.aspx and the English translation - http://www.looppa.com/Microsoft/Default.htm

• Dori Media Group (DMG)

• Greenpeace

• Musimundo (Argentina’s largest music and video retailer)

Funding history? VCs? BA?

Currently around $2,000,000 from private investors.

Growth? Internationalization?

We are experiencing rapid growth. After starting in Argentina we have clients and/or prospects in Mexico, Chile and the U.S.

How many employees do you have?

20.

How many developers?

10.

Are you hiring? If yes, what? Where?

We are hiring .Net programmers in Buenos Aires.

Which platform are you building on? Why?

Frameworks:

• Microsoft .Net 2.0

• Asp .Net Ajax 1.0

• Isapi Rewrite

As well, we see a great opportunity to integrate SharePoint and to manage different parts of the community ,especially for the open Looppa solution.

Do you have any Software IP? Is there something that you’re the only one to do on the market?

We have a unique, multi-tiered social network platform for media companies. We use the “Cosmos” metaphor as a way of describing the relationship between the owner of the overall ecosystem, or Cosmos, and segments of the ecosystem, a “Micro-Cosmos”. We have developed a YouTube video that describes this concept, based on one of our clients:

http://www.youtube.com/looppacosmos

and our newspapers solution can be viewed at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7q-dK9Vn9k

Who’s your role model?

Steve Jobs. He is redefining the media and entertainment industry through the introduction of innovative, intuitive technologies. He has increased the engagement of users, and created new revenue opportunities for an industry stuck in the past.

Where do you see opportunities today in the Software/internet areas?

Most of the media companies in the world are looking for social media solutions. We are not offering just the platform, we are providing creative, ready-to-employ solutions for television, radio and print media.

Looking for funding? If yes, how much?

Yes, we are interested in raising $2,500,000 - 5,000,000.

What about the BizSpark Program?

It is a great program for start ups, and we really appreciate the access to technology that it provides, as well as the guidance and contacts that have been made available by our Network Partner, the York Group.

What do you think? Are you going to join? Why?

http://www.microsoftstartupzone.com/bsdb/search.aspx?id=1338

Any advice to young Software entrepreneurs?

New technologies are driving major changes and transformations in the way business is done. There are fewer barriers to entry, regardless of where you are from, so this is the time to take a chance on building your own business. Who would have thought that a revolutionary social media technology would come from Argentina?

Anything else you’d like to say?

Thanks to Microsoft for coming up with a great program!