Racontours (www.racontours.com) is based on the premise that learning about one’s surroundings becomes more compelling with proximity to them. To stand on the battlefield, to walk along Wall Street, to visit the haunts of dead poets and politicians—the act of being there is what brings these histories alive; it’s what transforms static learning into compelling memorable entertainment.
We believe that the world is saturated with stories and anecdotes left untold simply because there has never been any convenient and effective medium for telling them. There was never any way to deliver multimedia information to customers on-demand and on-site—until now. The proliferation of wireless broadband devices now allows us to provide interactive, on-demand, multimedia tours to users on any street corner, park or monument virtually anywhere in the world.
Thus, a tourist in New York City might spot a billboard in Greenwich Village offering our tour/story of Greenwich Village on his cellphone. On impulse, he downloads it and begins strolling the neighborhood, accompanied by an expert storyteller. On his way through Washington Square, he listens to a history of the park dating back to the 18th century, views paintings and photos taken from his precise location a century before. Past denizens of the neighborhood come alive for him—Edgar Allen Poe, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Fiorello LaGuardia, Bob Dylan, Ed Koch—and he experiences history in its immediacy. Different people are affected by different slices of life, but in our experience, the thrill of being there is sought by all.
Technology is one component of the proposed solution: the ability to bundle and deliver audio, video, imagery, interactive maps, location-aware instructions and other interactive features on a mobile platform. Content is the second key component: the ability to tell a story.
Racontours is named for raconteurs—storytellers—and we believe its success will come down to how well we can tell our stories. Unlike a dry museum guide, for example, we believe the key is to inform while entertaining, to mix humor with history and pop culture with classical learning.
We also expect to involve our customers, allowing them to participate in the tours by recounting anecdotes that they may know, or by rating the stories that they are told. With tie-ins to various social media sites, and cool interactive features they will easily be able to tell their friends about their experience of being there. We could even match tourists and stories based on their profiles and preferences.
We believe Racontours will succeed because unlocks a universally sought-after experience—being there—through a convenient, user-friendly environment. Downloading one of our tours on a Smartphone will be easy and immediate, and for many tourists, it will embody the experience that caused them to travel in the first place. Everyone wants to feel like they really experienced the place they visited, but doing so is not easy. Racontours makes it so.
What is this business looking for from KVC?
a- We need the necessary mentorship to develop our business plan. Specifically to determine the size of the market and potential demand for this kind of application.
b- We need support to accurately and impartially establish the current valuation of the company in order to determine what percentage of equity to offer angel investors.
c- Support in the seeking of angel funding to update the existing tours, customize them for use on the current generation of smartphones, and support for the product launch campaign.