DISCOTECH IS MAKING IT EASIER TO PARTY THAN EVER BEFORE.
Discotech undertakes the task of booking VIP table service for its clients PHOTO: BY BJARNE VIJFVINKEL/UNSPLASH
Nightlife has experienced an unparalleled resurgence this year in the aftermath of the devastating 2020 year of shutdowns. Eager to flood the country’s hottest nightclubs with VIP tables and bottle service to enhance the exhilarating experience of watching the world’s most renowned DJs take the stage, partygoers are craving the complete sensory experience with ease. In comes Discotech—a nightlife app that ensures its users can enjoy everything the club scene has to offer without any stress, allowing guests to experience it all just a few clicks away. Not only does the app help its users find events in the area, but it also undertakes the task of putting them on the guest list or arranging VIP table service. Accountability, efficiency and, of course, fun are all at the center of the brand’s mission to deliver the experience. To learn more on Discotech’s welcome emergence on the nightlife scene, we chat with co-founder Ian Chen.
Screenshot of Discotech app’s events page, which allows users to discover upcoming events in their city COURTESY OF DISCOTECH
What was it like entering the nightlife industry with no prior experience?
We had to do a lot of learning through market research before we even dove into the project, talking to club owners and promoters and understanding the nightlife ecosystem. Then, we started developing the technology and getting partnerships on board as well as customers. We started as a VIP table booking app because we were trying to solve a problem we’ve faced ourselves as customers—we had been screwed over on a table and wanted to help people avoid that. We learned it’s hard targeting the small niche of big-spending VIP table customers year one, so in year two, we added the ability for people to just buy tickets for an event and also the option to RSVP for free events. That’s when things really took off.
Screenshot of Discotech’s app page on the iPhone app store. COURTESY OF DISCOTECH
What were some of the key problems you wanted to address when creating Discotech?
Transparency and accuracy were very important to us. Secondly, it was event discovery. The question that’s always on people’s minds is, ‘What’s going on? What are my options?’ People typically go to the same clubs over and over because that’s all they’re familiar with. We want people to go to Discotech to get all the information in one place and help people make better decisions on where they want to go out and have a good time.
Interior of Poppy, a hot nightlife destination that is served on Discotech PHOTO: BY ELIZABETH DANIELS
What is the most unique factor of the app?
Firstly, I think we’re the only app of any scale in the space that’s still alive after COVID-19. The competitive landscape has been depleted. We’re alive and we survived the pandemic. Secondly, we have done a good job of not just getting the tables and tickets but also the guest lists. I think the guest lists are important because we’ve worked out deals from the venues to get these perks for our customers. We don’t make a lot of money off this service, but we feel it’s very important to offer our customers and also create a trust foundation for them with Discotech. Also, our app is totally free to users—we don’t charge any service fee for the end customer.
Discotech sets out to ensure users are able to find events and parties in key destinations throughout the country BY SANDRA SEITAMAA/UNSPLASH
In which cities are you located?
We’re in over 50 cities, all of the major ones. Las Vegas is huge for us; L.A., where we are based, is number two. Then there’s Miami, New York, Chicago, San Diego, San Francisco, Scottsdale and Phoenix. Other good markets are Dallas, Austin, Houston, Seattle and D.C. We also have some international markets like Cancun, Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.
Discotech team photo in the Hollywood Hills COURTESY OF DISCOTECH
What trends are you currently seeing in the nightlife industry?
Right now, our business is being carried by bottle service. On the table side, from March 2021, we had a record-shattering month, way bigger than our previous month, which was in August 2019. Part of this is because people are dying to go out. There is a ‘revenge party’ mentality that’s making it become the Roaring 2020s.
Intimate table seating at Poppy. BY ELIZABETH DANIELS
What do you see as your biggest growth potential?
We started with nightclubs, then pool parties were a natural progression. Then we added lounges, rooftop bars and concert venues. We’re currently expanding into music festivals. I think those will be back booming soon. At the end of the day, we want Discotech to be the division for anything nightlife—if there’s music and alcohol, we want to do it. If it’s fun, you can do it on Discotech.