Grand Finalist

Grand Finalist

AI-powered "Kayak for services (transportation, food, and entertainment)" app


Bellhop is an app marketplace bringing together the best apps across food (delivery and reservations), transportation (on-demand and pre-booked rides), and entertainment (tours & activities and shows & events), and makes services bookable on-demand. As an AI-powered “Kayak for services” app, Bellhop transacts through supply partner APIs, and takes a commission on transactions. For example, we partner with Uber, Lyft, Via, buses and shuttles, and give all this supply to the consumer in one app.

Is your submission an idea or a business proposal?

Business Proposal

How practical is your proposal?

Yes, we already have a product on the market, and it’s available in the iOS App Store:

We’re partnered with most 3-star hotels in Manhattan to distribute the Bellhop app to their guests. Bellhop effectively acts as these hotels’ concierge service since these properties don’t have the infrastructure to provide concierge services to their guests. We similarly have relationships with many short-term rental (Airbnb) hosts to distribute the app to their guests.

Is your proposal pioneering?

We’re the first company to partner with all the big service-based app marketplaces (e.g. Uber, Lyft, Resy,, Viator) and bring their supply into a single mobile app for consumers. This capability provides consumers the ability to shop, compare, and determine what the best option is for them. For example, consumers can compare Uber, Lyft, Via, etc and book their ride all from within the Bellhop app without having these other apps on their phones.

How profitable is your proposal?

The US market opportunity is $70 billion. We take a 10% commission on every transaction from our suppliers. The model is very scalable since we build the supply side of the business through API integrations. As a result, our footprint equals the reach of all partners combined. Furthermore, we’ve done various focus groups and user interviews, and our research indicates that over 90% of consumers will prefer to use Bellhop to access the best local services from any location.

How will New Yorkers benefit from your proposal?

As a marketplace for “service apps”, our goal is to give apps a channel to market themselves and make the playing field level. For example, Lyft, Gett, Juno, Via can be on the same platform as Uber and consumers have more options to determine what’s best for them at any given moment. Perhaps not having any surge and using a standard Yellow cab suits better than a black car served by Uber. The New Yorker can now decide without compromising on time spent switching between multiple apps.

Please provide a brief background of your team.

Prior to Bellhop, Payam Safa (CEO) co-founded a hotel chain in Indonesia where he was responsible for all sales, marketing, and technology. He started his career programming drones and satellites for the US government holding Secret clearance. Next, as a technology consultant for Accenture, he was responsible to build the entire financial backbone for CalPERS, the third largest pension fund in the world. He graduated with honors in Computer Science from UCLA, and has an MBA from INSEAD.

Blue Thomas (CTO) has a Computer Science degree from Temple University, where he graduated with honors. He's been employed by large financial institutions such as Citigroup and UBS building trading systems, an IT automation company in their R&D department. After, he started a company providing logistics and distribution services and software for sustainable agriculture businesses. He served as CTO at Imperative where he built a team of engineers, designers and product managers, many of which are still building products for the company today.

The rest of the team is comprised of a system architect, one front-end engineer, three back-end engineers, and a UX/UI designer.

I am applying as:

An organization - up to 50 employees

Supported by
  1. parl58 x 30,
  2. Parklee2017 x 1,
  3. esanders x 5
and 6 others

Comments (3)