Leadership

Our team has extensive experience in loyalty marketing

Justin Yoshimura
Justin Yoshimura
CO-FOUNDER & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Justin is responsible for the vision and strategic direction of 500friends. His infatuation with retail began at age 14, when he opened an eBay account and quickly became one of eBay's top PowerSellers. Since then, Justin has founded two profitable ecommerce companies with $10M in revenues, and has been recognized by Forbes as a "30 under 30" entrepreneur and Direct Marketing News as a "40 under 40" marketing leader. He is also an investor in disruptive ecommerce and SaaS companies including BoostCTR, Bounce Exchange, Firebase, First Opinion, Hipmunk, Homejoy, ifeelgoods, OwnLocal, and Zencoder. When he's not helping retailers, he likes to spend time with his furry friends.
Michael Hemsey
Michael Hemsey
PRESIDENT
Michael leads the product strategy, market expansion, loyalty systems, and operational delivery teams at 500friends. He is focused on the expansion of 500friends’s loyalty services into untapped industries and geographies and further disrupting the loyalty industry. For over 20 years, Michael has cultivated a rich background in client services, product development, marketing, technology, and operations. As President of Kobie Marketing, Michael was responsible for all facets of the loyalty marketing organization, and grew the company exponentially over his tenure. Previously, Michael served as Executive Vice President of ESC (now TSYS Loyalty) and held leadership positions at Broadvision, Consumer Financial Network, and Mutual Of New York (MONY). Michael holds a B.A. in Government from the University of Notre Dame.
Geoffrey Smalling
Geoffrey Smalling
CHIEF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER
Geoffrey leads the technology group at 500friends. His responsibilities include driving the expansion of the LoyaltyPlus product suite and providing expert technical guidance to 500friends's clients. Most recently, Geoffrey held the position of CTO at wine.com, where he is credited with modernizing the company's front and back end technologies to grow it into the #1 online wine store. Prior to wine.com, he was a software consultant for Proxicom, working with clients that include Niketown, Toyota USA, and Mazda USA. Geoffrey holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.
Kristine Jacobs
Kristine Jacobs
VP CUSTOMER SUCCESS
Kristine leads the team responsible for the implementation and optimization of the 500friends solution. Her primary focus is the overall satisfaction of 500friends's client base. Acting as their trusted advisors from kickoff through implementation, Kristine's team is dedicated to ensuring that each client realizes the full potential of 500friends's market-leading solution. In her prior roles as a Strategic Relationship Manager at RichRelevance and VP of Strategy and Analysis at Digitas, she has managed key accounts including Sears.com, Overstock.com, and American Express. Kristine holds an M.S. in Direct and Interactive Marketing from New York University.
Zach Woith
Zach Woith
VP LOYALTY STRATEGY
Zach is responsible for developing strategies to improve customer loyalty and increase the lifetime value of customer relationships for 500friends client partners. Serving as lead strategist, he provides clients direction in framing the business case and ROI opportunity, formulating program structure, and identifying opportunities for ongoing optimization. Prior to joining 500friends, Zach held multiple eCommerce management roles with hpdirect.com, including launching and managing their highly successful loyalty program. Previously, he held other category management and marketing roles with Hewlett-Packard. Zach holds an M.B.A. with a concentration in Strategic Marketing from Indiana University, Kelley School of Business.
Wendy Ryan
Wendy Ryan
VP BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
Wendy leads all new logo business development activity for 500friends. Her success comes from her consultative approach to solving business problems for prospective clients. Previously, she spent 9.5 years as a Senior Director of Business Development at Merkle, where she was responsible for helping clients grow revenue by improving their ability to align customer-centric communications in today’s complex marketing landscape. She has over 20 years of experience managing executive level relationships, marketing, client support, and account management on a global level. Her prior roles at Merkle, Cardlytics, and Harland Clarke included direct relationships with Fortune 1000 companies in Retail, Consumer Goods, Financial Services, and Not for Profit. She holds a B.F.A. in Communications with a Public Relations emphasis from Valdosta State University.