[podcast] out to lunch with kenneth purcell

Via ItsNewOrleans.com (view & listen on their site)

Sure, you know you can rent a car on line. How about wedding flowers? That might sound crazy but it wasn’t all that long ago that renting a car online was a novel idea too.

Think about the last time you booked a plane ticket on an online travel website.  After you booked the ticket, the website asked you if you’d like to book anything else connected with your trip. A rental car. A hotel. A sightseeing tour. Restaurant reservations.

If you said “yes” and booked anything else, think about what is going on there, technically. The airline reservation software is now interacting with a myriad of other reservation systems, and linking them all to your frequent flier program.

The software that powers this complex operation was created by New Orleanian Kenneth Purcell. Kenneth built it into a software company called iSeatz.

rent a car or a hotel room from Kenneth Purcell

Kenneth Purcell

Today, Kenneth’s concept is an integral piece of the global online economy. His business, still based here in New Orleans, powers clients like American Express and Visa.

The Tech Revolution and Rental Flowers

The amazing thing about the online revolution is, the revolution never ends. Things you never even knew you needed become an integral part of your life. And everyone else’s life — which is how they become giant businesses like Facebook, Uber, Netflix, and Amazon.

Another name you can add to that list is a company called Something Borrowed Blooms. Something Borrowed Blooms rents flowers for weddings. They provide high-end artificial flowers for weddings. The artificial flowers look and even smell real, and they’re a fraction of the cost of real flowers.

If you’re thinking the comparison with Amazon and Uber is ridiculous because this has got to be a niche market with maybe a couple of clients, you’re going to need to recalibrate. Since its inception in December 2015, Something Borrowed Blooms has grown to 16 employees and handles 400 weddings a month. That number is rapidly moving toward one thousand weddings a month.

And the company is diversifying and expanding, under the leadership of its co-founder cousins, Lauren Bercier and Laken Swan.

rent your wedding flowers from Laken Swan

Laken Swan

Laken is also the Chief Marketing Officer of Something Borrowed Blooms.

Rent a car or flowers - Out to Lunch at Commander's Palace with Peter Ricchiuti, Kenneth Purcell Laken Swan

Peter Ricchiuti, Kenneth Purcell, Laken Swan

This show is recorded over lunch at Commander’s Palace in New Orleans. Photos by Jill Lafleur.

Check out Kenneth’s previous appearance on Out to Lunch, back in 2013.