We’re pretty proud of the people that work here at ZOZI. Outside of the fact that they are generally awesome, we also get to see some pretty interesting passions and hobbies that they have. From employees who start their first day here at the company by “running” to ZOZI HQ (from Oakland), to our CEO cycling across Europe to raise money for cancer awareness, the core of our brand begins from each of our individual passions.
Recently, we discovered that one of our account executives, Nate Heurta (who is an all-around lovable and super guy), also has an amazing passion: slacklining. We decided to grill him a little to learn more about his love of the outdoors and adrenaline-filled weekends, and also share some awesome photos from his trip that he took this past weekend in Yosemite with friends.
We love it when new people join us here at zozi. This week, we welcome Jason Tusman, our newest Director of Design (aka: Director of Making Things Look Awesome), in the words of Jason. He sports a rad pair of glasses; loves his skateboard and lives in San Francisco. Welcome aboard, Jason! In typical zozi hazing tradition, we’ll be making you hang glide naked before you get your official status as zozi employee (just kidding – kind of).
Tell me, how did you end up here at zozi?
I always saw myself as a beautiful russian figure skater and heard about zozi, so figured, hey this is the perfect fit for me (and I believe that happiness is very important in life and the experiences that zozi offers have the ability to make people happy).
Is there anything or anyone that inspires your design?
Color, photography, shadows. Chuck Close, Robert Bechtle, Bach, John Lasseter, Dieter Rams, Jobs. Beautiful beaches.
What was your last gig?
Pole dancer and designer. Redesigning the TechCrunch site for the enjoyment of all of Silicon Valley.
Now that you’re officially on the zozi team, what are you most excited about?
I am excited to work with such a young creative team, and to build true lifestyle experience (also still trying to fulfill my dreams of becoming a russian figure skater).
What will be your first zozi adventure?
Probably a relaxing beach getaway or possibly kite surfing (until zozi offers a figure skating experience!)
You can keep up with Jason’s shenanigans at @whoisJason.
Here at zozi, we always take the time to celebrate the achievements of our teammates and partners – especially when they involve crushing the biggest waves in the world, like our very own zozi Guru Maya Gabeira does.
We’re stoked to announce that Maya just won her fifth overall Girls Best Performance Award in Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Award history last Friday in Los Angeles, CA. Gabeira has won four consecutive awards between 2007 – 2010 and is considered one of the most well-rounded female big wave surfers in the world.
We think she’s one of the most badass girls (and surfers) we know. And soon enough, you’ll be able to be hit the waves with her yourself when we unveil her amazingly cool zozi Guru experience.
If life really does imitate art, at some point or another we’re all going to find ourselves in a battle royal – aka, a jumbled fist-fight with a smattering of people. With the likes of The Hunger Games, Battlestar Galactica, and Zombieland, survival skills are totally looming in our minds. What to do? Make a beeline for zozi – we’ve got you covered when it comes to training to face a melee:
1. First order of business for survival is the art of staying alive. Luckily, there’s an Outdoor Survival Skills Walkabout in LA to teach you fire making, shelter building, and water gathering.
2. Moving (or jumping) through any landscape with ease ain’t a walk in the park, unless you’re trained to do so. Overcome obstacles of any nature in Boston by becoming proficient in parkour.
3. If distant combat appeals more than being up close and personal, you’ll want to make sure your archery skills are up to par in San Francisco (and bring a friend, these archery lessons are for two). Plus, being able to peg a squirrel in the eye is priceless.
4. Knowing your way around a glock would sure make you a lethal opponent (and comes in handy if forced to battle by way of a round of Duck Hunt). In Portland, take a Virtual Reality Tactical Shooting Course and be wooed by the adrenaline of psuedo survival.
5. Stamina will serve you well as you race away from frenemies. Lace on sneakers for marathon training in Washington DC, and leave everyone behind in your high speed wake.
6. Oops, you got dumped in the frosty mountains of…god knows where (it’s not like your GPS works when aliens have attacked). Getting from point A to point B won’t be an issue if you’ve got this secret weapon: the ability to safely climb slabs of ice, which you learned in Seattle, naturally.
7. And once you climb down from all that cold, you’re still stuck on the rocks? Thankfully you took that climbing class in Southern California so those boulders and faces don’t trip you up.
8. Seriously, paintball has so many survival applications: splatter those in your alliance with red to look beaten, or maybe an artful blend of green and yellow will camouflage. Add on the fact that it’s built in shooting-a-moving-target practice and voila – you’ll want to find yourself in Portland.
9. A good Battle Royal never lacks a sword-fight, regardless of whether it’s comprised of kids, zombies, or intergalactic species. Perry your way around a duel and you’ll keep your head about you.
10. All this talk of keeping your head about you and man, would you love an adult beverage if the world went all dystopia. No problem – in just one day you can learn to brew beer using wild ingredients you forage yourself. Stay thirsty (and happy) in Washington DC. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst. And may the odds be ever in your favor, whichever comes to pass.
Zozi Grows Revenue by Seven-Fold in 2011 and Brings on Proven Startup Executive Jonathan Shambroom as Chief Operating Officer
Consumer startup veteran from Ning, Crackle, Evite, and When.com will bring 18 years of strategic product vision and operations expertise to aggressively expand zozi’s leadership in $26 billion dollar experience and getaways space.
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – Zozi, the leading marketplace for distinctive experiences and getaways today announced record growth in 2011 with a 700% increase in revenues from the year prior, and the key hire of former Ning executive, Jonathan Shambroom, as chief operating officer (COO). The two recent milestones come on the heels of the company’s recent launch of zozi Gurus™, an innovative platform featuring once-in-a-lifetime celebrity expert experiences.
“Jonathan’s depth of startup experience in product, marketing, hiring, and operations will be instrumental as we continue to bolster our leadership in the experiences and getaways segment,” said TJ Sassani, CEO, zozi. “His proven track record as a product leader and startup executive is validated by the many successful companies he’s helped to build while taking part in pioneering new markets. Jonathan’s expertise will ensure rapid growth as we expand our business with innovative and differentiating products for our passionate customers.”
Shambroom most recently served as chief product officer at Ning, the largest platform in the world for creating personalized social websites, founded by Marc Andreessen and acquired in October 2011. In Shambroom’s 18-year career in consumer technology, he has helped to build several other world-class Internet brands and category defining products including Grouper (purchased by Sony Pictures), Evite (Ticketmaster/CitySearch), When.com (AOL Time Warner), and PF Magic (Mindscape).
“Technology will always be changing, but experiences and memories last a lifetime. Zozi helps people live life to the fullest,” said Jonathan Shambroom, COO. “As a huge traveler, cyclist, and adventurer, I couldn’t be more passionate about the company, the product, the team, and the zozi brand.”
Zozi is actively hiring across all of the company’s divisions including engineering, marketing, design, analytics, and sales.
Zozi believes everyone should experience all the amazing things this world has to offer through unforgettable experiences like introductory flight lessons, vineyard tours and wine tasting by horseback, diving for abalone, exclusive celebrity and athlete experiences, ice climbing frozen waterfalls in the Catskills, and thousands of accessible adventures like these. Zozi also features distinctive weekend getaways and vacation packages for customers nationwide. Zozi is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in New York City. For more information, visit http://www.zozi.com.
For additional information, contact:
Public Relations Manager, zozi