How Loren Bendele got his dream of running a business with Savings.com — and an office dog, too Featured

8:00pm EDT June 30, 2013
Loren Bendele, president and co-founder, Savings.com Loren Bendele, president and co-founder, Savings.com

Financial Services

FINALIST

Loren Bendele has been an entrepreneur from the day he started selling Blow Pops out of his backpack at school. His mother and father owned a popcorn and yogurt shop, and Bendele would buy the Pops wholesale to sell to fellow students. It was a profitable venture until he was asked to stop by his teachers.

But Bendele’s career in business had begun.

In 2007, Savings.com was Bendele’s effort to build an online coupon site that built consumer trust with coupon codes that always work. He put in the time building relationships with bloggers who could create buzz for his business and with companies who wanted to offer their coupons on his site.

Bendele’s ability to relate to people and build those strong relationships is due at least in part to his time spent as a stand-up comedian. While it’s not a path many leaders follow to business success, being up on stage helped him develop his storytelling skills and his ability to read people.

One of his keys to attracting customers and quality employees alike is not only a belief in his self and what he is selling, but the ability to get his audience to believe, too.

Bendele didn’t have a crystal-clear vision of what his business was ultimately going to look like, but he knew he wanted great people and an office dog. A sign hanging on the office door that says “Dog on premises” and the smiling faces on the people who work at Savings.com indicate he has met those goals.

But Bendele is not satisfied with what he has achieved to this point. He is developing a grocery application that would be available on all smartphones. It would allow consumers to walk into a grocery store and look up the best deals within the grocery store as well as download any available coupons.

Bendele is hopeful that within five years, Savings.com will be the most dominant player in grocery couponing.

How to reach: Savings.com, www.savings.com