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
Shift7 Digital
videos (1)
Andrew Walker
Liberty Advisor Group
videos (1)
Sara Fitzgerald
Novatio Solutions
videos (1)
Gokul Solai
Impact Engine
videos (1)
Jessica Droste Yagan
PeopleVine
videos (1)
Jordan Gilman
ANKO Technologies Corp
videos (1)
Anatoliy Kolodkin
SP+ (SP Plus)
videos (1)
Marc Baumann
4C Insights
videos (2)
Alok Choudhary
Belmont Trading Company
videos (1)
Igor Boguslavsky
Jobbatical
videos (1)
Karoli Hindriks
MSDSonline
videos (1)
Glenn Trout
Illinois Technology Association (ITA)
videos (2)
Julia Kanouse
Fooda
videos (1)
Orazio Buzza
Channel IQ
videos (1)
Andy Walker
Aprimo
videos (1)
John Stammen
Georama
videos (1)
Nihal Advani
Lightstream
videos (2)
Stu Grubbs
Earlybird Software
videos (1)
Andrew Parnell
Clarity Insights
videos (1)
Tom Thimot
Soothe
videos (1)
Chris To
NowSecure
videos (1)
Andrew Hoog
G2 Crowd
videos (2)
Tim Handorf
Retrofit
videos (1)
Mary Pigatti
Avant
videos (1)
Al Goldstein
PartySlate
videos (1)
Julie Novack
Steadfast Networks
videos (2)
Karl Zimmerman
CodeNow
videos (2)
Neal Sales-Griffin
Esquify, Inc.
videos (2)
RKON Technologies
videos (1)
Jeff Mullarkey
The WFC Group
videos (1)
Neil Shah
Page Vault
videos (1)
Jeffrey Eschbach
Rubicon Technology
videos (1)
Bill Weissman
Netrix, LLC.
videos (1)
Rob Dang
EZLinks Golf
videos (1)
Gary Cohen
UrbanBound
videos (1)
Michael Krasman
Codal
videos (1)
Keval Baxi
Sandstorm Design
videos (1)
Sandy Marsico
Edovo
videos (1)
Brian Hill
Allant Group
videos (2)
Gaurav Issar
Threadless
videos (2)
Jake Nickell
Seller Labs
videos (1)
Jeff Cohen
ShipBob, Inc.
videos (1)
Divey Gulati
Kapow
videos (2)
Chris Brown
ActiveCampaign
videos (1)
Jason VandeBoom
Hireology
videos (2)
AMPY
videos (1)
Tejas Shastry
Malwarebytes
videos (1)
Marcin Kleczynski
Tock
videos (1)
Nick Kokonas