We make Digital Personal
Meet the crew, these are the people that make it happen. We are a passionate group who create and curate innovative digital solutions.
Local Wisdom was founded in 1999 by Rutgers alumni, Derrick Larane, Shawn Venkat, Michael Alfaro, and Pinaki Kathiari. The eager graduates embraced the real world and with their Computer Science degrees in hand, they started work at Johnson & Johnson and Berlitz. Managing the digital platforms for these large companies was a great learning experience for the dynamic foursome as they quickly saw a true void in the marketplace. With this realization came the birth of Local Wisdom.
Local Wisdom was the answer to the industry’s lack of a digital agency that could bring together great web design with the latest technology. Derrick, Shawn, Michael, and Pinaki all felt they were experiencing inadequate digital support from agencies and consultants hired by the leading companies they worked for. Their goal was simple: establish an agency with knowledge and passion for the latest emerging technologies and deliver that technology behind compelling and engaging web design.
The ambitious team would leave their 9-to-5’s and fire up their computers at night to support their new business venture. Prone to the late nights, garage-style office, and crazy hours synonymous with any start-up, Local Wisdom quickly became an “overnight sensation” with its largest client, Johnson & Johnson. Quickly the workload increased, leaving the team ready to embrace their new business full-time. Resignations submitted, it was time to focus exclusively on Local Wisdom.
What started with four people has grown to over 40. In 2010, Local Wisdom moved to its 4,000 square foot office in Princeton Junction, NJ. As of 2011, Local Wisdom is now 50 people large, with a client base spanning multiple Fortune companies including Johnson & Johnson, Ortho McNeill Janssen, Purdue Pharmaceuticals, ELS Educational Services, Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc., and more.
Along with the company’s new office space came the emergence of its internal R&D group, aimed at designing and developing innovative digital platforms that showcase Local Wisdom’s creative talents and technological savvy. The first product born from the R&D team is Weatherwise, a weather app for iPhone and Android that brings users a visually entertaining way to view their weather forecast. A recipient of five awards from the Art Directors Club of New Jersey, learn more at www.weatherwiseapp.com.
A question the owners are asked to this day is, “Where does the name Local Wisdom come from?” Well, to say one is “wise” is to say that person has inherent knowledge, often the result of years of accumulated experience in a particular area. The word “local” is synonymous with a geographic location. So if you’re traveling to a new country and need some guidance on that area, you would probably seek someone with “local wisdom,” right? A person that can give you the ins and outs of that area, someone who knows the best places to eat, the avenues to avoid, the hidden gems you need to see.
We know digital because we were born from digital. If you’re seeking an agency that will guide you through the process, give you feedback on the best technical solution for your business, and deliver that solution with creative ingenuity and unrelenting passion, then Local Wisdom is the agency for you.