Nick Kokonas

About

Before starting Tock, Kokonas tested a similar system at his three establishments—Alinea, Aviary, and Next. After he opened Alinea to international fanfare in 2005, he was spending $140,000 a year on staff dedicated to managing the constantly ringing reservation line. He was also losing an average of $260,000 a year on cancellations and tables with partial no-shows. Convinced there had to be a better way, he developed an unsophisticated ticketing program in 2010. “I didn’t make all this up because it was exciting to me to build this software company,” he says. “It was driving me nuts.” In 2011 he decided his new restaurant, Next, would offer reservations exclusively via the online platform. Happy with the results, Kokonas eventually rolled over his other places to the system. Since it switched to tickets, Alinea’s net profits have gone up 38 percent, a stat Kokonas crowed about last June in a 6,000-word essay arguing that ticketing was the future of restaurants. The post went viral among avid diners and chefs who wanted to adopt the program. “I was getting 10 restaurants a day e-mailing me,” Kokonas says. Kokonas has a prediction. In five years, he says, the tipping landscape will be very different, with most restaurants including mandatory service fees in their bills. “Everyone is so afraid to be the first to change something,” he adds. But ticketing or service fees? “This is so easy, it’s unbelievable,” he says, eyes wide and hands in the air, as if he can’t fathom how the rest of the industry hasn’t already figured this out.
Videos (1)
What Can You Break Today?
Company Spotlight in Tech
Civis Analytics
videos (1)
Dan Wagner
Scout Security, Inc.
videos (1)
AAron Dannenbring
Ora Interactive
videos (1)
Mike Kelly
eComfort.com
videos (1)
Pavel Sokolovsky
HERE
videos (1)
AAron Dannenbring
HighGround
videos (1)
Vip Sandhir
MVTRAC
videos (1)
Luke Smith
Scientel Solutions
videos (1)
Nelson Santos
Techweek
videos (2)
Amanda Signorelli
Elexa Consumer Products
videos (1)
Lawrence Beger
Georama
videos (1)
Nihal Advani
SkillNet
videos (1)
Mike Kritzman
SMS Assist
videos (1)
Michael Rothman
Rubicon Technology
videos (1)
Bill Weissman
ReviewTrackers
videos (2)
Chris Campbell
Antenna International
videos (1)
Dave Falter
Solving IT
videos (1)
Paul Taylor
Soothe
videos (1)
Chris To
BallotReady
videos (1)
Alex Niemczewski
RKON Technologies
videos (1)
Jeff Mullarkey
Iyka
videos (1)
Poonam Gupta
G2 Crowd
videos (1)
Tim Handorf
Vanco International
videos (1)
Brad Corbin
Clarity Insights
videos (1)
Tom Thimot
Trading Technologies
videos (1)
Rick Lane
One North Interactive
videos (1)
John Simpson
Kapow
videos (1)
Chris Brown
Integrated Project Management
videos (1)
Mike McLeod
SG Interactive
videos (1)
Jordan Levin
Rise Interactive
videos (1)
Jon Morris
AMPY
videos (1)
Tejas Shastry
RedShelf
videos (1)
Greg Fenton
Adeptia
videos (1)
Lou Ennuso
CloudCraze
videos (1)
Ray Grady
Public Good Software, Inc.
videos (1)
Dan Ratner
Earlybird Software
videos (1)
Andrew Parnell
Emmi Solutions
videos (1)
Devin Gross
Steadfast Networks
videos (1)
Karl Zimmerman
Belmont Trading Company
videos (1)
Igor Boguslavsky
ObjectWave
videos (1)
Sam Cinquegrani
Aginity
videos (1)
Doug Grimsted
Esquify
videos (1)
Drew Stern
InstruMMents Inc.
videos (1)
Mladen Barbaric
Access Mobility 24
videos (1)
Joe Wright
Tovala
videos (1)
David Rabie
NowSecure
videos (1)
Andrew Hoog
Allant Group
videos (1)
Gaurav Issar
Fooda
videos (1)
Orazio Buzza