CMU Portugal inRes Mentor Sells Startup
Nowait for 40 Million Dollars
40 million dollars was the acquisition price
of Nowait, the Pittsburgh restaurant waitlist startup created by CMU Portugal
inRes mentor Robb Myer. Nowait was bought by Yelp, best known for its
restaurant rating app.
In August 2016, the San Francisco-based
company Yelp had already invested 8 million dollars in Nowait, allowing diners
using Yelp's app to see restaurant wait times and add their name to the
waitlist through the Yelp app.
"We've had a successful
partnership and we're excited to align fully with Yelp to drive even faster
adoption. Together we'll have the leading waitlist system in the restaurant
industry paired with the largest engaged consumer base," Nowait CEO Ware
Sykes said in a statement published in Business
About 4 thousand restaurants use Nowait
in the United States and Canada and about 24 million mobile devices used the
Yelp app during the final quarter of 2016, the company reported.
Nowait was founded seven years ago by
Robb Myer, a Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) graduate, and entrepreneur-in-residence
of the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship. In the latter role, and since 2016, Robb has served both as a mentor
and a workshop leader for inRes, CMU Portugal's very early stage acceleration
In 2012, Nowait received the Open Field
Entrepreneurs Fund Award from CMU's Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship,
now part of the Swartz Center. This center, through the Project Olympus incubator, is the
home base for the inRes teams, during their US immersion, in Pittsburgh.
Three years ago the Pittsburgh
Technology Council also named Nowait "Startup of the Year" in
Back in October
2015, another inRes mentor and CMU alumnus, Craig
Markovitz, sold his startup Blue Belt for 275 million dollars to the London-based medical tech company, Smith & Nephew.