Not too long ago, Daniel Kerbel was an international student coming from Costa Rica to go to Michigan State University. It was an experience that at first proved difficult to adjust to but eventually inspired him to start his own business, Guidesmob
The 1-year-old start-up makes a mobile app that helps students discover and learn more about the college towns they just moved to. The idea is to streamline the adjustment period for young people who are excited to discover a new place but too often don't have much of a clue of how best to live life there.
"The toughest thing was the weather," Kerbel says. "It got really cold really quickly. Coming from a tropical climate it was hard to adjust to." He adds that "if you didn't discover something while it was warm you won't be able to do it until it's warm again."
Guidesmob's app offers everything from Google Maps to weather forecasts. It also lets students know what options they have there for social functions, such as restaurants, bars and other gathering places or events.
Guidesmob, which went through Bizdom's start-up accelerator curriculum last fall, launched its first app last year. The Spartan app focused on helping new students adjust to life at Michigan State University and had 12,000 iPhone users. This fall it plans to expand its newly redesigned app to include Central Michigan University and the University of Michigan.
Source: Daniel Kerbel, CEO of Guidesmob
Writer: Jon Zemke
Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.