Dorothy Cann Hamilton
Crystal Gurin
AARP

Business Heats Up For Recipe Site And Search Engine Cookstr

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Business is heating up for Cookstr, a New York City startup that publishes recipes from top cookbook authors, and provides foodie-oriented search functionality to other branded websites. The company announced a deal with the AARP today, an advocacy group for retired people that will use Cookstr’s content and search engine to help AARP.org visitors find recipes that fit their preferences, health and dietary concerns.

AARP is the largest membership organization in the U.S. The chief executive and founder of Cookstr, Will Schwalbe, said cooking is a top hobby and interest for this 50-years-and-older demographic. The company’s search technology and website, Cookstr.com was originally developed with Pivotal Labs. Schwalbe thinks of it as a “Pandora of recipes,” for chefs at any level.

Cookstr is a Tipping Point Partners incubator company, backed by angel investors including: Dorothy Cann Hamilton the founder and CEO of the International Culinary Center which includes the French Culinary Institute (FCI) and the Italian Culinary Academy (ICA); Tailwind Capital managing partner and JetBlue board member Frank V. Sica; and top executives at eMarketer.com, Terry Chabrowe and Crystal Gurin.

On target to become profitable this year, according to Schwalbe, Cookstr.com generated over 20 million page views in the last twelve months. Among 400 culinary authors featured by Cookstr are celebrity chefs and culinary educators: Jamie Oliver, Mario Batali and Nigella Lawson.

The company’s first major client was Bravo TV online, whose “Recipe Finder” is still powered by Cookstr.


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