AUSTIN, Texas, Jan. 14, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Buzz Points, a leader in connecting local businesses, community financial institutions and consumers through rewards, today announced the appointment of Dwayne Spradlin as Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Spradlin brings to Buzz Points deep senior management expertise in scaling fast-growth companies and capitalizing on data-empowered business models.
"Since its launch, Buzz Points has expanded to 32 markets in 24 states, with a continually increasing network of thousands of local merchants," said John Pugliese, Buzz Points' Chairman of the Board. "This explosive growth – further propelled by a significant strategic investment from Discover Financial Services in April – led us to recruit a seasoned executive with extensive experience in managing operations at rapidly expanding companies. Dwayne has 25 years of diverse experience, including serving as President of Austin-based Hoover's, where he grew revenues to $100 million during his tenure and capitalized on analysis and interpretation of rigorous financial data. We are very pleased to deploy his energy and industry expertise in charting and executing Buzz Points' continued expansion."
Buzz Points is the only merchant-funded rewards platform that works exclusively with community financial institutions and local businesses to engage mutual customers. Members earn points on every transaction by using their debit and/or credit cards wherever they shop, with bonus points awarded for shopping with local merchants. Buzz Points creates additional revenue for financial institutions and gives local businesses a turnkey marketing solution that provides the data analysis and targeted marketing technologies they need to expand their market reach, attract new business, and increase the loyalty of existing customers. In 2014 Buzz Points received a significant strategic investment from PULSE Network, a wholly owned subsidiary of Discover Financial Services, as part of a larger $19 million financing round from multiple investors.
"I am delighted to join the Buzz Points team at such a promising juncture," said Mr. Spradlin. "Buzz Points' innovative customer loyalty solutions give local merchants and community financial institutions across the country access to valuable marketing data and analysis – a competitive edge normally enjoyed by only the biggest corporations. Through a counter-intuitive 'local-first' business model, Buzz Points has already attracted significant grassroots attention from clients and investors. Our goal for 2015 is to firmly establish Buzz Points as a market leader with national reach in providing unmatched local shopping incentives and rewards for businesses, community financial institutions and consumers alike."
Buzz Points' Board of Directors and Jay Valanju, Mr. Spradlin's predecessor, together recognized the timing was right to enlist an executive with experience managing the transformation of growth businesses. As part of the management team transition, Mr. Valanju has assumed the title of Founder and Senior Vice President of Business Development and Strategic Partnerships.
In addition to Mr. Spradlin's successful tenure as President of Hoover's, a Dun & Bradstreet subsidiary that employs approximately 300 people in the Austin area, he most recently served as CEO of the Health Data Consortium in Washington, D.C. Mr. Spradlin launched the consortium as a public-private partnership by invitation of the White House, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, leading an aggressive campaign to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the U.S. healthcare system through open health data, improved informatics and data analytics. Mr. Spradlin was also CEO of Boston-headquartered InnoCentive Inc., an internationally recognized pioneer in online open innovation and crowdsourced R&D that connects organizations such as NASA, Boeing and P&G to a global network of problem solvers from over 200 countries. Prior to InnoCentive, he served as President and COO of Philadelphia-based StarCite, Inc., as Senior Vice President of Corporate and Business Development at VerticalNet, and as Director of Emerging Technologies at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), where he focused on digital business transformation. A co-author of The Open Innovation Marketplace, published by FT Press in 2011, he holds an MBA as well as a BA in Applied Mathematics from the University of Chicago.
About Buzz Points, Inc.
Buzz Points, Inc., is the creator of the Buzz Points loyalty product suite, which connects consumers, local merchants and community financial institutions through social media engagement, targeted marketing and rewards. The Buzz Points Program enables credit unions and community banks to generate greater non-interest income, increase transactions, reduce account attrition, drive new loans and attract new customers. The Buzz Points Merchant Program provides additional revenue to financial institutions, increases existing consumer loyalty and supports local businesses by increasing their market reach and attracting new customers. For more information, visit www.buzzpoints.com.
SOURCE Buzz Points, Inc.