We have exciting news today – Julio Bruno joins the team as Chief Operating Officer. As part of his broad executive responsibilities, Julio will lead all Sales, Marketing, Enterprise, Merchant Success, and People team functionalities for Belly. Julio joins Belly from TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site, where he joined pre-IPO in 2011 as Global Vice President of Sales.
“I see Belly becoming the best ally for a business’s success, while playing a strategic role in their marketing and loyalty programs and establishing better relationships with their customers,” said Julio. “Belly’s SaaS platform is very attractive because it’s so scalable. Merchants love it because it brings new and repeat business, and consumers love it too because they’re able to get rewards they want at their favorite places.”
“Most growth companies hit a stage where it makes sense to hire an experienced and professional manager – but in Julio, we found something so much more,” said Logan LaHive, CEO and founder of Belly. “Julio brings the experience in rapidly scaling a global team building a subscription service in a two-sided network, while doing so with an energy, drive, and team-centric approach that deeply resonated with us. He’s here to take over running the business – and lead our team in the mission to help our partners create and enhance digital relationships with their customers.”
At TripAdvisor, Julio led a dedicated startup division, TripAdvisor for Business, which offered an advertising subscription service for the hospitality industry. Julio and team scaled this division globally, leading and developing business, analytics, and demand generation teams. Under his tenure, Business Listings grew to over 70,000 international subscribers, creating a new and important revenue stream for TripAdvisor. Prior to TripAdvisor, Julio held VP, GM and Managing Director roles at Travelport, overseeing Canada, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe and South America. Julio worked in a number of executive positions at Regus, Energizer and Diageo, based in locations such as London, Paris, Madrid and New York. Julio's repertoire of international accolades now lands him in Belly’s headquarters of Chicago, Ill.
Julio’s background in market expansion, product introduction and building high functioning sales and operations teams couldn’t come at a better time for Belly. The Chicago-based company recently announced a large-scale expansion with 7-Eleven, which will bring Belly to all 7-Eleven convenience store locations across the East Coast and parts of Canada. By the end of year, Belly will be powering the loyalty platform for over 10k locations.
“I met an ambitious team, with world-class tech, and a passion to satisfy both the merchant and the consumer,” said Julio. “Their entrepreneurial energy is contagious and I realized that we can bring Belly to every city and market by focusing on people, processes and performance. Riding off the early success of our enterprise partner locations, we plan to continue to invest in enterprise while building high performance growth for small and medium-sized businesses. Belly has grown tremendously for a three-year-old company, and I’m here to ensure our vision is realized – that consumers can get rewards at all their favorite places.”
Welcome to the team, Julio!