Simple. Effective. Trusted.

texting startup


Zipwhip launched in 2007 from John Lauer’s basement in Seattle, Washington.



In 2013, Zipwhip introduced texting on existing landline and toll free phone numbers.

zipwhip growth


Zipwhip is on track to grow to over 100 professionals this year.

Our Story

In spring 2007, three Detroit entrepreneurs started a business with the vision of unlocking text messaging from the confine of mobile phones and unleash texting’s full potential. The first two years consisted of countless hours of software development, carrier presentations, and investor pitches. The backbreaking effort of evangelizing the future of texting did not go as planned. At the time, the infamous Sand Hill venture community was still on a BlackBerry high and proclaimed the future of messaging was BBM. The team boldly made the decision to roll the dice and bootstrap the business from CEO John Lauer’s Seattle basement.

Zipwhip landed its first carrier contract with Sprint in February 2009. Over the next three years, we expanded our reach by securing contracts with both T-Mobile and AT&T. In 2012, we launched the Zipwhip Android Phone Sync app direct to consumer which enabled any Android user to send and receive texts on their computer or tablet. Our initial vision of being able to text from your mobile number on any device became a reality— the first cloud texting platform was born.

In April 2013, we introduced the ability to add texting to your existing landline or toll free number. In July 2014, Frontier Communications (NASDAQ: FTR) became the first tier-1 landline operator to add texting capability to their existing voice lines by launching Frontier Texting powered by Zipwhip. In parallel, we secured direct connectivity into the wireless operators for texting on toll free phone numbers. Our vision of making “Call or Text” the new norm for every phone number is rapidly taking form. With over 200 million active landline and toll free numbers in market, the future of business texting has just begun.

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John Lauer

John Lauer

CEO, Co-founder

John is an Internet and mobile veteran with 20 years of corporate management experience. At 21 years old, his first entrepreneur endeavor was Rootlevel, a web application development company that built and He then founded Simplewire, one of the mobile industry’s first text messaging aggregators which was acquired by Qpass in 2006 and rebranded as OpenMarket. John stayed on board with OpenMarket for a year and a half as VP of Sales driving revenue from $5M annually to $150M. John is also known for throwing the most elaborate Halloween party in the state of Washington.

John Larson

John Larson

CMO, Co-founder

John is a startup veteran. His focus is on driving innovation and building profitable relationships. John oversees sales, marketing, and corporate development. Previously, he founded Plus5 Promotions, a text-based marketing engagement tool which was acquired in 2004 by Boomerang Mobile Media. He then co-founded Pocketframe, a patented consumer product that he brought to the masses via TV and other forms of direct marketing. When John isn’t busy on a conference call, he’s likely giving out high fives or doing chin ups on his pull up bar.

Anthony Riemma

Anthony Riemma

EVP Product, Co-founder

Anthony is responsible for all aspects of the product strategy, design, definition, management, go-to-market plans, and customer experience at Zipwhip. In addition to his passion for new gadgets, he has over 16 years of experience implementing consumer and business applications. Prior to Zipwhip, he was employee number 4 at RouteOne, a cloud-based web application found in nearly every auto dealership and major financial institution. Anthony worked with Fortune 100 companies as a management consultant at Accenture. He’s also spent time at Intel and Visteon Corporation. He’s learning the Polish language to stay in good favor with his in-laws.

Lucas Price

Lucas Price

SVP Business Development

Lucas is an entrepreneur by day, underwater photographer by night. Before jumping onboard with Zipwhip, Lucas founded and ran Gravity Payments, a Seattle-based payment processor that has grown to over 100 employees and 10,000 clients. His responsibilities at Zipwhip include developing and executing strategies for new business development while managing a growing sales force. His underwater photography can be found at

Bill Kearns

Bill Kearns

VP Finance

Bill is responsible for accounting, financial planning and investor relations at Zipwhip. Prior to joining the team, he worked for Alaska Airlines, Paccar, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and Deloitte & Touché. Bill is curious to learn new industries, new business models, and implementing new processes and has a proven track record of generating strong returns on investment. Outside of work, Bill tries to keep up with his two boys and all of the activities they want to do.

James Lapic

James Lapic

VP Technology

James brings over 11 years of carrier and aggregator messaging experience to Zipwhip. At Wireless Services Corporation he helped build and operate the messaging infrastructure for Nextel and NII Holdings. He then led the network engineering team at SinglePoint, a leading messaging aggregator with direct connections and relationships with all tier-1 and tier-2 operators. SinglePoint was the exclusive provider of high capacity interactive TV premium messaging for programs such as "Deal or No Deal" and "American Idol". In addition to overseeing Zipwhip’s Development and Operations, James plays an integral role in carrier relations.

Board Members

John Lauer

CEO at Zipwhip

John Stafford III

Principal at Ronin Capital

Lisa Nelson (Observer)

Partner at Microsoft Ventures

Hank Skorny

Chairman at Zipwhip, SVP at Neustar

Bill McAleer

Partner at Voyager Capital

Laurel Buckner (Observer)

Vice President at GCI


Voyager Capital
Microsoft Ventures
Ronin Capital LLC