CEO Envisions 'New Angie's List'

Posted: Updated:
Shortly after being announced as new CEO, Durchslag said Angie's List is entering a period of "unprecedented opportunity." Shortly after being announced as new CEO, Durchslag said Angie's List is entering a period of "unprecedented opportunity."

Vowing to "tackle the fundamentals," the new chief executive officer at Angie's List says he's betting his career on turning the company around. Scott Durchslag, whose background includes big-name companies like Best Buy, Expedia and Skype, says his plan is to "crawl, walk, run and to start with what we do today, and doing it better." Durchslag is taking over a company that has struggled to find consistent profitability and has long been the subject of speculation, both in Indiana and on Wall Street.

Angie's List stock opens the week at $5.10, off its 52-week high of $8.90 and its 2011 Initial Public Offering price of $16.26.

The Chicago-native says talent and technology will be keys to reigniting revenue growth and finding profitability as Angie's List transitions into an e-commerce model. "We're working on an absolute state-of-the-art platform that is modular, it is open source," said Durchslag, in an interview on Inside Indiana Business Television. "You will see technology being a big part of how we compete going forward."

As Angie's List searches for its mojo, the company is under increasing competitive pressures. Some suggest giants like Amazon or Google are better positioned to step in and dominate the space. Durchslag says "big scale, one-size-fits-all" competitors don't worry him. "The essence of the power of place is local," said Durchslag. "Angie's List has forgotten more than Amazon and Google know about this space."

In 2014, Angie's List, which currently has more than 1,500 employees, announced plans for a $40 million expansion of its corporate campus on the near east side of Indianapolis, but scuttled those plans in the wake of the RFRA controversy in March.

Don't look for those expansion plans and visions of an employee base of 3,000 in Indy to be revisited any time soon.

"It's not a priority for us right now because we've got other things that are sort of at the top of the plate," said Durchslag. "But I look forward to that being a challenge later."

  • Perspectives

    • States Can Foster Job Growth if Lifelong Learning is at Play

      The worlds of work and learning are merging in powerful ways, driven by the exponential growth in human knowledge. This means the abilities needed in the workplace go beyond simple “job skills” that can be learned quickly through a short-term training program. I was with Montana Gov. Steve Bullock when he released the newest National Governors Association report, “Governor’s Action Guide to Achieving Good Jobs for All Americans,” at the opening session...



  • Most Popular Stories

    • UPDATE: Nestl√© Details Fort Wayne Layoffs

      Virginia-based Nestlé USA says only 40 employees will be laid off at the company's Fort Wayne distribution center. A spokesperson for Nestlé tells Inside INdiana Business a WARN Notice filed with the state incorrectly stated the facility would close at the end of the year, affecting nearly 70 workers.

    • Fort Wayne Tops 'Hottest Real Estate Markets'

      Fort Wayne just opened its brand new riverfront Promenade Park to pomp and pageantry, hoping to make it a draw to Indiana’s second largest city. But now the Allen County community has something else to celebrate. The editors of declared Fort Wayne as the hottest real estate market in July for the entire country. 

    • Scott Kleine is one of the senior interns at Idea Co-op. (photo courtesy of NineStar Connect)

      Senior Interns Shining at Greenfield Coworking Space

      Wednesday was National Senior Citizen Day and three seniors are being celebrated for their contributions at a coworking space in Hancock County. Idea Co-op, which officially opened its doors earlier this year, has taken on three "senior interns" following a chance encounter at a local Kiwanis meeting in December. Jill Snyder, director of economic and business development for Idea Co-op operator NineStar Connect, says the men approached her with the goal of being involved in...

    • (photo courtesy of Wes Mills)

      Ethanol Plant to Stop Production, POET Blames EPA

      Ethanol production at an Indiana biofuels plant will be stopped and the owner blames Environmental Protection Agency policies and the oil refining industry. South Dakota-based POET Energy announced the plant in Cloverdale will be placed in “idle production” within several weeks, though no date has been set. The ethanol producer says 100’s of local jobs will be impacted, but the news release did not specifically mention “layoffs” at this point.

    • Eleven Fifty is headquartered at Launch Fishers.

      State to Launch 5G Hub in Downtown Indy

      The state of Indiana has announced plans for what it says is a first-of-its-kind 5G hub. Launching in October, the Indiana 5G Zone aims to "attract business, foster innovation and propel research and development in 5G-enabled advanced technologies." The hub will be located inside the new downtown Indianapolis headquarters of the nonprofit Eleven Fifty Academy. The Indiana 5G Zone will include a 3,000-square-foot research lab, which will be used to develop and test...