Exit alert: Parking Panda acquired by competitor - Technical.ly Baltimore

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Apr. 13, 2017 9:06 am

Exit alert: Parking Panda acquired by competitor

The Federal Hill-based company was acquired by Chicago’s SpotHero. “By joining forces, we will have a greater impact on the transportation landscape,” said Parking Panda founder Adam Zilberbaum.

SpotHero aims to fill these lines.

(Photo by Flickr user radcliffe dacanay, used under a Creative Commons license)

Parking Panda was acquired by SpotHero, one of its competitors in the off-street parking reservation space. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Based in Federal Hill, Parking Panda was founded in 2011. The company’s app allows users to book parking spots at off-street sites. The company focused on event parking, and established more than 800 partnerships with sports teams across leagues like the MLB and NHL, as well as convention centers and other large entities. The company expanded into Canada in 2016.

The presence in Canada and B2B partnerships were attractive to Chicago-based SpotHero, the company said in a statement announcing the deal.

Parking Panda founder and CEO Adam Zilberbaum and COO James Bain will remain with the company.

“This is the most natural progression for our company,” Zilberbaum said in a statement. “By joining forces, we will have a greater impact on the transportation landscape, making parking more convenient through technology.”

We reached out to the company for more info, and will update this post when it becomes available.

(Update: 4/13/17, 11:42 a.m.)

In an interview, Zilberbaum and SpotHero COO Trish Lukasik said they will be maintaining Parking Panda’s Baltimore office, and Parking Panda’s 30 employees will remain with the company.

It’s a new phase for Parking Panda, which was founded by Zilberbaum and Nick Miller, the latter of whom left the company a little over a year ago. Launching out of Baltimore’s first Startup Weekend, the company went on to the Entrepreneurship Roundtable Accelerator in New York and raised $4.7 million in venture funding.

Lukasik said the two companies started talking seriously about the deal 6-8 weeks ago.

The companies were already familiar with each other. Both companies were founded in 2011, and SpotHero expanded its service here in 2015. Lukasik said the competitors always had a “healthy respect” for each other.

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“We moved really quickly, and together we learned each other’s businesses and strengths,” Lukasik said.

Lukasik said that Parking Panda adds in areas that SpotHero didn’t previously have, such as B2B partnerships for events and SaaS products. SpotHero had decided it wasn’t going to pursue international expansion this year, but Parking Panda’s launch last year in Toronto and Edmonton now adds that, as well.

Now they’ll work to integrate the 30 employees with 150 SpotHero employees in Chicago, New York and D.C.  Aside from some T-shirts delivered this week, a decision hasn’t been made about how much SpotHero branding will appear at the company’s office in Baltimore.

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Stephen Babcock

Stephen Babcock is Market Editor for Technical.ly Baltimore and Technical.ly DC. A graduate of Northeastern University, he moved to Baltimore following stints in New Orleans and Rio Arriba County, New Mexico. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Baltimore Fishbowl, NOLA Defender, NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune and the Rio Grande Sun.

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