To say that Billy McFarland is unusual would be an understatement. Not many people can start a fledgling business and make it successful at age 13, let alone start a business at all. He did so at age 13, which was a service business that searched and directed customers to a local businessman.
Other businesses have been started, sold and some are still functioning, but the latest one is called Magnises. Established in New York City and Washington D.C., Magnises is designed to be a format for millennials, where they can receive discounts at many of their favorite hangouts and haunts. Restaurants. bars, clubs, meeting places, events, trips, concerts and special events are all included.
For a reasonable annual membership fee of $250, members receive the “Black Card” which copies the information from the member’s debit or credit card, onto its magnetic strip. The Black Card is used to pay the bill at member establishments as well as to apply the discount.
Where McFarland has hit the jackpot is in the inherent of the millennials. They love to get together to socialize, brag about their achievements, and get business contacts. The target demographics include entrepreneurs, managers, professionals and anyone else who feels that they are upwardly mobile, between the ages of 21 and 35.
At the year-end of 2015, there were already over 10,000 members and the list is still growing. The Black Card is now a “must have, ” and a status symbol and unknowing newbies are advised by the peer pressure of friends to get with the program and sign up.
According to The Guardian, Billy McFarland is considering expanding because there are so many other metropolitan areas in other cities where Magnises would certainly be an instant hit. He is looking at Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta and London as possible sites.
A recent influx of $3 million of venture capital has not hurt the expansion direction. McFarland has a good working business model, and he feels that the timing is right because other millennials on many of these other cities have heard of Magnises. The future looks good, very good for McFarland and Magnises.