SpotHero: “Orbitz for parking” comes to New York City, battling crowded market

SpotHero is “an Orbitz for parking,” according to Dave Longwell, the NYC Regional Manager for the Chicago company, which has spaces available in seven borough garages and has had staff on the ground in the city since August.

SpotHero's garages in New York. Screenshot provided by SpotHero

SpotHero  is “an Orbitz for parking.”

That’s the quick pitch, says Dave Longwell, the NYC Regional Manager for the Chicago company, which has had staff on the ground in the city since August. The company currently has spaces available in seven garages in Downtown and Dumbo. The Brooklyn Borough President’s office is interested in the service’s potential to help its hospitality industry, said Longwell.

Find NYC parking here.

SpotHero is a website and app that lets you look for and reserve parking in parking ramps and private lots on the go.  One advantage of the site that Longwell told us many customers appreciate, is the ability to schedule a spot in advance. For Lexample, he said, sometimes when people buy tickets for concerts, they appreciate being able to reserve their spot weeks in advance of the actual event.

It works by establishing relationships with existing garages and setting up deals for spaces, enabling them in many cases to give users of its software a better price than they would get if they drove up directly to the garage (though not always). Right now, Longwell is looking to establish relationships with businesses that often have customers who need parking, such as hotels without their own garages, event venues or popular restaurants.

There is no shortage of startups aiming at the parking market. When it raised $2.5 million last year, the team differentiated itself from buzzy Baltimore-based competitor Parking Panda by committing to 24/7 customer service and deeper on the ground work.

That’s why, though their New York team is based in Manhattan, Longwell is spending his fair share amount of time in all the boroughs, particularly Brooklyn.

SpotHero does not have a street parking component, like another company we discussed a few weeks ago. It has 24 staff overall, three of them are working in New York.

Series: Brooklyn

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