Erich Lee and Matt Ellwood

Old Collegians Unite to Take On Social Media Giants: Scrollr.co has taken off like no one expected. Within 14 days of launching to the public, the ‘horizontal scrolling, content-based social network’ had cracked 25,000 page views, 500 members and landed on the front page of the New Zealand Herald website. Furthermore, the team behind the engineering of the social media platform includes four Saint Kentigern Old Collegians and University of Auckland business students Tim Jennings, Jing Seth, Erich Lee and Matt Ellwood.

Along with partners Andrew Wallace and AJ Tills, Tim (Director), Jing (Business Development), Erich (Front End Development) and Matt (Head of Design and Logic) have been working for the past ten months in the hope to fill what appears to be a gap for the next generation of social media platforms. The team says recent reports suggest Facebook is set to lose 80% of its user base by 2017, a trend also reflected in stagnating traffic growth for the content sharing platform, Tumblr.

Each user is given their own gallery, the difference being that users are effectively now in the driving seat to create their own network. The site uses horizontal scrolling, as opposed to vertical. The young Kiwis’ mission is to change the way people interact with content online; whether it’s checking out what’s trending, following celebrities and keeping up to date with global news or getting inspiration for an upcoming event. They believe Scrollr provides an all-encompassing experience, delivering consistently important and relevant content to users.

The brainchilds behind the idea, Tim Jennings (2003-2009) and Jing Seth (2005-2009), had a moment of inspiration whilst studying at the University Business School. The rest of the Old Collegian team then came together following the recommendation of College Teacher in Charge of Digital Technologies and Tim’s mentor, Mr Dominic Mooney. He presented Tim with the names of former students, Erich Lee (2009-2013) and Matt Ellwood (2009-2013) to help design and code his idea, and from there his vision quickly built momentum and the path to reality. 

The business students say New Zealanders are spending more time interacting on social media platforms than any other country in the world, according to futurist and entrepreneur Ross Dawson. They say this reflects a trend indicated in the last New Zealand social media report, conducted by Nielsen in 2010, showing New Zealanders were rapidly increasing their participation online, with content sharing the most popular social media activity.

Confident in these statistics, the Old Collegians have facilitated in the official launch of Scrollr which is now open to the public after nine months of development and a month long testing phase. Head of Design and Logic, Matt Ellwood says news coverage has also seen them recently appear on the Scoop and Yahoo websites and he is flying up from Wellington this week for more press events.

The website can be found at www.scrollr.co.  

Tim Jennings (Old Collegian) - Director
Jing Seth (Old Collegian) - Business Development
Erich Lee (Old Collegian) - Front End Development
Matt Ellwood (Old Collegian) - Head of Design and Logic
Andrew Wallace - COO
AJ Tills - Head of Marketing