The Rise Of The “Poképreneur”

What is a Poképreneur? A person that creates a business based on integrations with or capitalizing on the Pokémon Go mobile app and game.

As I left my co-working space, Capital Factory, this evening from an Artificial Intelligence event with founder William Dinkel, I was quickly pulled into shooting down a bat in the lobby. The bat, known as a Zubat, was giving me trouble, and the front desk manager and a buddy egged me on as I tried to swipe the ball through a floating hoop.

Earlier in the evening, I discovered Capital Factory was now an official Pokéspot in Austin, TX. As a co-working spot for entrepreneurs, I was quickly thinking, what better name than Poképreneurs. This was a day after an organized lunch walk around downtown was organized by a few members on the co-working space’s Slack team.

In the few days that this Pokémon Go, mobile app, phenomenon has grown at an incredibly viral pace, I have dabbled here and there as I killed time. Most of which, I threw out incense and sat on my couch over the weekend. I was quickly told that is NOT how you are supposed to play this game!

Now selling Poképreneur apparel. Catch your own today by clicking here.

Now selling Poképreneur apparel. Catch your own today by clicking here.

Regardless, there are several interesting ways that people are now starting to capitalize on the phenomenon. The first official business I’ve seen come out of it is Houston/Austin-based LureDeals, essentially bridging the previously dying daily deal gap, and delivering Groupon meets Pokémon.

Portland’s The Oregonian shared a story of a man providing guided 2-hour Pokémon Go hunting experiences. What started at just $30 for the two-hour tour, I’m sure has grown with his recent PR press, and has spawned many copycats, but I’ll deem the 35-year-old William Asa as the original Poképreneur that created Uber meets Pokémon Go on a whim.

While these are only the beginning, it is quickly becoming known that the mobile app is growing at a tumultuous pace, many of those that saw it coming unexpectedly were small, brick & mortar businesses at the local level. The same one’s LureDeal is trying to help capitalize on. An Inc. Magazine article by Walter Chen has already hacked the marketing strategy for small businesses on how to use lures to attract large numbers of traffic through your store.

Since we are just a few days in, expect many more people to learn how to capitalize on the rapid growth of this Augmented Reality game and develop a new type of entrepreneur, the Poképreneur. Whether they will grow to be in the same realm as unicorns, we are still early to tell. Do you know of other Poképreneurs? Share them in the comments and I can follow up with a running list of other companies building on the Pokémon Go success.

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