Billy McFarland’s most recent venture, Magnises, is taking the millennial world by storm, yet people should not be surprised. Having formed his first business at only 13 years old, and his formation of Spling in college speaks well of McFarland’s abilities.
Spling is still functioning as a going concern with McFarland acting as the CEO. It takes the URL of a company and transforms it into a graphic design, helping to brand the company and draw attention with the transformed URL. Customers include Discovery and Universal.
In 2013, Billy McFarland started Magnises, which is a format for millennials to co-mingle at their favorite restaurants, clubs, bars, events and other venues at attractive discounts and perks. The target is professionals, entrepreneurs, specialty workers in fashion and IT between the ages of 21 and 35.
It all happens with the “Black Card” which copies the information from a member’s debit or credit card onto the magnetic strip of the Black Card. The Black Card is then used to effect the discounts when a member visits a member establishment. For a modest $250 annual fee, members have access to the benefits of the discounts and perks.
The business establishments, for the most part, are favorites of the millennials in New York City, and the Magnises concept has caught on in a big way. By the end of 2015, Magnises had over 10,000 members and counting. In addition to the discounted services, it is not unusual to receive a bottle of wine, compliments of the restaurant at dinner or special seating at an event.
Millennials have a tendency to mingle, to share ideas, socialize and make business contacts. The Black Card has become a prestige symbol as is a natural thing to have because it makes a lot of sense, not only from a savings standpoint but as a means introductions and relationships.
Recently a venture capitalist saw fit to invest $3 million in Magnises, and this has McFarland looking at expansion outside of New York City. Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, Los Angeles and London are prime targets.
According to McFarland, the business model is working extremely well, and it is time to duplicate that model into new growth.