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Tech Cocktail Champaign

Gift Caddie Aims To Make Online Wish Lists Easier

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What is the Internet?  Ask a nerd, and you’ll likely get some elaborate answer about networks, protocols, and Al Gore.  I believe the explanation can be boiled down to one word: information.  The Internet is information.  It’s everything you ever needed to know about anything, plus cat videos.

So why then are we still taking wild guesses when buying gifts for others?  Amazon WishList has attempted to solve this problem, but the service requires you to install a web app to add off-site items.  Wishlist.com also requires an installation, and their UX leaves something to be desired.

Teresa Savage, co-founder and CEO of Gift Caddie, believes that her service is the solution.  By partnering with comparison shopping service PriceGrabber, in addition to working seamlessly across all websites, Gift Caddie is making a real push at capturing the “wish list” market.

“Gift Caddie grew out of my inability to buy great gifts for my children. Gift giving in my family had deteriorated to where I’d give my daughter a gift with a receipt, and my son stored the gifts I bought him in a closet and never used them,” says Savage.

In the process of creating Gift Caddie, Savage thought that she was building a service for college students.  It didn’t quite turn out that way: “It’s been women in intimate relationships who’ve been Gift Caddie’s biggest users and most vocal supporters,” Savage continues. “It seems husbands and boyfriends need serious guidance in giving women what they really want and need.”

Starting Up in Champaign, IL

Gift Caddie was one of the showcased startups at Tech Cocktail’s recent Champaign Mixer.  I asked Savage to give us a taste of what the startup scene in the area looks like:

Champaign start-up entrepreneurs tend to be intergenerational, probably due to the influence of the University of Illinois. You have profs working with students, and either one could be the team leader on a project. There’s a lot of trust between generations, and the most important thing is who has the talent and passion to bring the project to fruition.

Buying a gift for a loved one?  Stop guessing.  Urge them onto Gift Caddie today.  

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About the Author

When Zach Davis isn't getting lost in the mountains, he is hustling from Boulder, CO as Tech Cocktail's Director of Marketing. He is the author of Appalachian Trials, a book chronicling the mindset necessary for thru-hiking all 2,181 miles of the Appalachian Trail, a feat he accomplished in 2011. Zach is a green tea enthusiast, die-hard Chicago sports fan, and avid concert-goer. Follow Zach on Twitter: @zrdavis.

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