(Photo by Flickr user bric, used under a Creative Commons license)
Google believes in BookBandit, the textbook-buying platform founded by University of Delaware student Jim Jannuzzio in 2016. The business, described as “the first-ever concierge service for college textbook buyers and sellers,” is one of only 25 high-growth-potential companies invited to take part in the search giant’s Advantage Program this quarter.
The Advantage Program is a 90-day digital marketing program that provides marketers with free access to Google’s marketing experts, customized learning content, events, planning tools and other resources.
So what does BookBandit do, exactly? In short, it saves college students a lot of money on textbooks.
“The average college student spends $660 each year on textbooks,” Jannuzzio said. “By aggregating more than 20 different vendors into one streamlined search and checkout process, we’ve been able to help students achieve a savings of as much as 74 percent per year.”
With savings like that, it’s no wonder BookBandit is growing fast.
“We are truly excited to have been selected by Google for such an amazing opportunity,” Jannuzzio said. “Through the Advantage Program, we expect to see a significant increase in traffic to both the app and the newly launched website.”
This isn’t the first time BookBandit has been selected for something big. In the spring, 1313 Accelerator chose the company to receive a significant angel investment and office space. Jannuzzio credits that achievement to his prior selection to participate in the SPARK Challenge, a program created by SmartInvest Ventures to “identify promising entrepreneurs and nurture their startup companies into viable businesses.”
“When I started the challenge, BookBandit was live and on the market. I had a lot of ideas for expansion, but didn’t know what to tackle first” Jannuzzio said. “SmartInvest helped me strategize and define my scope so I could achieve those goals, particularly with scalability as we prepared for the Google Advantage Program.”
Jannuzzio will graduate in December 2017 with a bachelor’s in finance from the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics.
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