Ruminations of a Taco-Obsessed Philly Native

As a taco/restaurant lover, I’m always willing to travel to try out a new place.  But the problem is that restaurants are more fun with people.  That’s why it’s helpful to have an app like Skout that makes it easier to meet new people, that have the same interests as me.

Skout is a location-based social network available on iOS and Android devices as well as a dedicated website. The focus of the application and accompanying website is to meet new people, anywhere in the world. The application uses a smartphones GPS to to find other uses in the general vicinity, but doesn’t give users exact locations. Users can meet new people in their local area, or virtually travel to other locations. The application promotes serendipitous meetings and chats using simple technology. The aim of the application is to meet new people, leading to strong relationships that are either purely platonic or something more.

The Early Stages
Created in 2007 by Christian Wiklund and Niklas Lindstrom, Skout started off as a simple social network. At that time, Skout was merely a social networking website where people could connect. It wasn’t until the 2009 relaunch that the website focused more on making romantic connections. This was due to the founders’ realization that 83% of the website’s then 200,000 members were using the network for dating. Along with a revamped website, the iOS application launched with much success. The Android application was launched the following year.

Gaining Momentum
In the following years, Skout gained users. It was one of the iPhone’s first location-based dating services, so the brand and service expanded. Surveys within the Skout application concluded that majority of the users had success in meeting others in the real world through the application. The popularity of Skout made mobile dating services more common and widely accepted. With the launch of Skout OUT, the network allowed people to create connections offline. The interactive touch screen was installed in various venues and allowed users to flirt, dedicate songs, and send messages to others in the venue or nearby venues.

Strong Funding
By 2010, numerous applications launched to follow the success of Skout. Competitors muddled the social networking market, but never compared to how easy Skout is to access and download. At this point, Skout had a staff count of three, including the original founders. It had acquired 4.6 million in funding since its advent, with profit and losses dipping back and forth. The mobile application had seen tens of millions of downloads, despite the competition. By 2012, Skout had a larger staff count and received massive funding. The company raised $22 million in venture capital from Andreessen Horowitz. This funding has allowed the network to expand. The company was able to further develop the mobile application and network into what it is today.

Expansion
Skout expanded tremendously since their massive venture capital funding. In fact, the number of active users tripled and the number of connections made by users quadrupled just a year after this funding. Skout began adding new features that proved to be beneficial in terms of profit. They included a paid feature that allows users to connect with others all over the world. Furthermore, the application includes ways for users to send virtual gifts using real currency. Additionally, community features have allowed users to monitor the application themselves. This strengthened the community within the application and created a stronger relationship with users, and also led to creating additional apps like Fuse.

Today, Skout is continuing to thrive and grow. The mobile application and website is continually adapting, becoming more user friendly and fun to use. The mobile application is still among the top 25 social networking applications in the Apple store and continues to see new users and growth.

The business world is filled with people who have made some quick money convincing other people to follow their plans. However, those people are just talking heads. Vijay Eswaran is a person who has worked from the ground up to create a business that allows him to help other people. His QI Group started as an MLM, but it has grown to be a multi-national business that works in many areas of the world.

The goal of Vijay’s empire is to make sure that people have jobs and the resources they need to make their lives better. He wants his company to expand so that he can give more people jobs, and he does his own part to make sure that people all around Asia are able to learn how to succeed in their own endeavors. Most people who are looking to Vijar for advice can find that advice in his books.

The Books

The books that Vijay has written are all designed to give the readers a look into how he manages his businesses and his life. He has been able to write books about managing your daily schedule, and he has written books showing how he grew the QI Group into such a large company. These two books alone help people who need advice when they are striking out in the business world.

Vijay has been able to change many lives in southeast Asia with his businesses and books. He has also started more than one charity that is there to help people who need it most. He wants children to have the best start in life that they can get, but he also wants to make sure that young business owners do not give up on their dreams. He wants all the people around him to succeed as he has.

I’ve experienced a lot of back pain in my life.  Let me tell you, when you’re a foodie and you like to travel so that you can venture out and try some new things, it really sucks when you’re cooped up and in miserable pain with your back.  That’s why I had to get sorted, and I have to thank my Facebook friends for showing me North American Spine.

North American Spine is a large company based in Dallas, Texas that provides spinal healthcare. There are a number of people who have various ailments with their back and spinal column. While, people can go to a chiropractor or doctor, there may be times when they need another option to best meet their needs. With North American Spine, people will have just that as this company offers individuals highly effective and specialized care for their spinal conditions. When visiting, North American Spine patients will have a very professional and expert staff to help them figure out and overcome their spinal ailments. By using North American Spine, people will have a leading source to use in order to get back to good health.

One of the things that North American Spine offers patients is pain diagnosis. This is a consultation along with an exam in which the doctor will determine the exact cause of the spinal ailments a patient is suffering from. After this is done, the doctor will then prescribe a treatment plan to help the patient regain spinal column health. Some of the treatment options may include rest, exercise, compresses as well as surgery. Depending on each individual patientssituation, the company will enable them to get the care they need to overcome their spinal conditions.

In order to overcome spinal conditions, one of the most common things that a doctor will suggest is chiropractic care. This is a form of healthcare that consists of going to a chiropractic physician and having them do routine adjustments for your neck and back. With quality chiropractic care, you will have a way to keep your back and spine in good condition as well as relieve yourself of any discomfort that is present with your spine.

Another treatment option would be physical therapy. If a patient is in a situation where the spinal ailments are hindering their ability to walk, then this option will help them. Physical therapy consists of going to a healthcare professional who will do a number of physical exercises to help you overcome discomfort as well as improve your ability to function. Using a physical therapist will give patients another source to help reestablish spinal health.

While physical therapy and chiropractic care may be sufficient to overcome spinal ailments, there are times when a person may need to get spine surgery. Fortunately, North American Spine offers patients a quality source to get any necessary procedure done. What makes this company a great source for spinal care is the vast number of surgical procedures that are available. Therefore patients will sure to get what they need in order to correct any problems with their spine. Some of these procedures include laser surgery as well as artificial disc replacement. These procedures are minimally invasive so they are not going to be long and rigorous like some other types of surgery.

Many people suffer from spinal column ailments and are therefor unsure of where to go. When looking to get the best quality spinal care, patients will want to consider North American Spine. With the vast number of treatment options available as well as expert professionals, North American Spine offers people a great option in terms of getting the care they need when suffering from back and spine problems. With the help of North American Spine, patients will get quality care that is also affordable as well.

While catching up with the latest food news today, I came across an article that mentioned how Dunkin’ Donuts just introduced a new pizza bagel as well as a chocolate croissant.

When I first read about the pizza bagel, I had doubts about how good a pizza bagel from a donut shop would taste.

Then I remembered how I had the same doubts about the tuna salad and chicken salad sandwiches served at Dunkin’ Donuts.

For many years, I have been visiting Dunkin’ Donuts shops in order to purchase donuts. One day a couple of years ago, I stopped at a Dunkin’ Donuts shop and I decided to purchase one of their tuna salad sandwiches.

The tuna sandwich tasted really good! Maybe the new pizza bagel will be just as good.

The pizza bagel served at Dunkin’ Donuts is actually named the Tomato Mozzarella Supreme Bagel. The item is essentially a regular bagel that is topped with tomato sauce, herbs and mozzarella cheese.

The pizza bagel is reasonably priced but it is only available now in select markets. The new chocolate croissant, however, is available at participating Dunkin’ Donuts shops across America, and my buddy Vijay Eswaran recommends that.

Shake Shack has had a busy fourth quarter. The company is growing exponentially, and filed for a $100 million IPO. Now, they chain is ready to give consumers a brand new burger to sink their teeth into. The ShackMeister Burger is the first new “major” burger in over two years.

The burger features an angus beef burger, topped with cheese and fried, marinated shallots. The burger also comes with the world-renowned ShackSauce, to which no one knows the secret recipe in full. The burger will be available in both single and double versions come the new year.

The ShackMeister Burger will be new to consumers, but Shake Shack tried it out earlier this year at the Food Network South Beach Wine and Food Festival. Sam Tabar even said the burger won the Burger Bash, besting dozens of other entries.

Shake Shack has been pushing hard to make a bigger name for itself in 2014, and it would seem they’ve succeeded. They’ve teamed with celebrity chefs to create limited edition, one day only burgers, and they even brought in the Cronut king himself, Dominique Ansel to come up with a killer dessert. The Shake Shack is definitely heading up this year, and will likely continue its successful trend in 2015.

Shake Shack, the New York City based burger franchise has recently issued paperwork to launch an initial public offering (IPO) in order to become publicly listed and to trade on an exchange. The IPO hopes to raise about $100 million in capital for the business to open up new stores and to perform renovations on existing stores. Currently, there are 63 retail locations of Shake Shack including one in Citi Field, where the Mets play. The next store to open will be located in Austin Texas, it’s first location in that city.

The decision to become publicly listed comes about as other companies in the same industry such as McDonalds and Wendy’s have realized floundering sales as customers move towards healthier food alternatives. Shake Shack has been able to capitalize somewhat on this movement by offering hormone and antibiotic free beef that has reached an audience in Manhattan.

The restaurant began in 2001 and was started when Danny Meyer, a restaurant owner and operator, opened a hot dog cart in Madison Square Park in Manhattan. Eventually, after some initial success, a more permanent location opened in the park and eventually spread to other locations in Manhattan. From there the company spread throughout the tri-state area, according to Igor Cornelsen.

Many are predicting good things for the stock as other fast food businesses which have launched IPOs in recent years have done well for themselves. Currently the company has revenue of $85 million and profits of just over $5 million.

Christmas is full of miracles, as two Philadelphia transit workers can attest to. A Philadelphia women went into labor while riding on the Market-Frankford subway train. 

Instead of just calling for help and standing by, Sgt. Daniel Caban and Officer Darrel James went right to work according to witness Bruce Levenson. They could tell that the woman was in distress and that her baby was not planning on waiting any longer. They helped the woman get comfortable and were there for her as she pushed the baby at. They were the first ones to hold her baby when it arrived. 

The baby was born at 5:53 on Christmas Day. One thing is for sure, this baby is never going to forget the story about how they came into this world. 

The woman and her baby are doing well, and were transported to a local area hospital after the transit workers helped her deliver her child. There is no word yet on what the woman named her baby. However, Sgt. Daniel Caban and Officer Darrel James were just happy that they were able to help and they got to take part in such a unique Christmas miracle. 

You never know what is going to happen when you walk out the door. These men are shinning examples of outstanding law enforcement officers.

Thomas Keller, owner of Per Se and French Laundry, has found a delicious new butter to serve in his restaurants. The butter comes from Diane St. Clair’s farm in Orwell, Vermont. After just one taste of the butter, Keller decided to buy St. Claire’s entire inventory–even though the butter is $49 a pound. Maybe he could use an evaluation at the Amen Clinic cuz that sounds nuts!

St. Clair makes the butter from Jersey cows. After churning the butter, the farmer works the butter with her hands to make sure that all the fats are distributed evenly through the butter. The farmer has been making butter for more than 10 years, and uses the traditional Land O’ Lakes methods for making creamy butter that spreads evenly on breads and vegetables. 

The butter made the cover of “Time” magazine in June 2014. And fortunately, food enthusiasts can purchase the butter as well from Saxelby Cheesemongers, also for $49 a pound.

There are big changes coming to your local Olive Garden. An activist hedge fund, Starboard Value, recently took over the parent board of Olive Garden, Darden Restaurants. Some new business strategies came with the takeover. The biggest change that regular patrons will notice is the push for to-go business. Currently, Olive Garden’s to-go business accounts for about 8% of their total sales. However, they’re expecting that number to climb up to about 12% of total sales– a significant portion of their business.

A big advantage, they say, is the type of food they sell. Olive Garden is known for their casual Italian food, and pasta tends to travel well. An added bonus is that customers tend to spend more when they order carry-out instead of dining in the restaurant. This could be due, in large part, to the fact that Olive Garden offers baskets of endless breadsticks to customers who dine in. Filling up on bread often results in smaller dinner orders. With to-go orders, customers tend to forego the bottomless breadsticks and thus spend more on their main entrees. In fact, the cost of the average to-go order is about 30% higher than the average dine in order, and sponsors like Slow Ventures will definitely like that profitability.

The good news for Olive Garden lovers is that your menu favorites will remain, so you can enjoy them at home or in the restaurant.

The gigantic Burger King and Tim Horton’s, recently vowed to keep all of their burgers and doughnuts separate, however most people are very much concerned that things may be shifting to the Canadian side of the border, tax-wise too. Burger Kings through an official statement has said that the day-to-day’s operations will fully remain headquartered in the coastal city of Miami, whereas most of its corporate and citizenship services are going to be transferred to Canada, a very prominent move by most multinational companies in a move that is better known as a tax inversion. Forbes would probably call BK stock a huge cash cow like it did with Wet Seal a few years ago during the Susan McGalla days.

According to a detailed report from the Americans for Tax Fairness; a cluster of companies and individuals who have positioned themselves as a commercial taxpayer watchdog. The company suggests that an eminent border switch could ultimately save Burger King and its esteemed shareholders around $1.2 billion by the year 2018. The group suggests that profits held offshore by the end of 2013 may slip due to the tax-free situation for about $117 million in savings. This figure could also future revenues amounting to the year 2018 and an additional $275 million.

Shareholders are the factual winners on the new eventualities exposed by ATF’s calculations. On the other hand, because they are not paying any capital gains taxes, the company stands to pocket more than $820 million.

Burger King refutes these claims of super profits, they noted without elaboration, “An examination of the report suggests an explicate flaw, while the figures do not precisely represent circumstances and facts.” The company insists that the move is largely driven by growth and not tax rates.