Mobile app company breaking Provo taboo

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For some BYU students, there is a taboo about staying in Provo after graduation. A local company named Avantar is helping to change that thought process.

Chris Lydiksen (BYU Alumn, 2000) looks over the Yellow Pages App. Photo by Elliott Miller

According to their website, Avantar is “a mobile media company at the forefront of the pay-for-performance advertising industry with a keen focus on local search. One of Avantar’s greatest assets is our Yellow Pages application. Avantar has been here from the very start of this local mobile search revolution. We were the first company to launch the very first geo-location search application on a smartphone device. We have since not only reinvented Yellow Pages, lead in the mobile app frenzy, but we are also redefining hyper-local advertising.”

The landscape of the mobile world is a rapidly changing one and Avantar is a leader in that change, especially within the local realm.

Avantar employees Chris Lydiksen, Erin Mathis and Jason Marrott are three BYU graduates at the growing company that helped to create an easier world through mobile applications. Because of Avantar, they have graduated and remained in Provo.
From the lakes to the mountains to BYU football and the usually easy commute, there are a lot of reasons to stay in Provo after graduation.
Provo native Lydiksen has stayed in his hometown since graduation and says that he has always “been able to find a job in town.”

Marrott, a native of Fresno, Calif., graduated from BYU in 2009 with a degree in business management. He attended the career fair on campus and was soon hired by Avantar.

“Since being here at Avantar I have transitioned to business development and operations,” Marrott said. “I particularly enjoy having my thoughts, ideas, and opinions heard and acted on.”

“My wife and I are living in South Orem. My commute is only 10 minutes, which I am a big fan of. I love being so close to the mountains — easy access to rivers and lakes for fishing, hiking and camping.”

Mathis, also from California, found out about Avantar through another means — ksl.com. She believes that many BYU students fear staying in Provo “because there are better work opportunities other places.”

“Provo is a great place because of BYU,” Mathis said, “but career opportunities are usually found elsewhere, or so it seems.”

Going through school can be a daunting task but Mathis maintains that students need to “start making connections with people and companies now.”

“Don’t hesitate,” Mathis said. “It will make your life and your job search so much easier once you graduate. If you make connections with people now, they will be more willing to hire you in the future because they are already familiar with you.”

“I love being in an industry that is growing leaps and bounds,” Marrot said. “I love the gadgets and the technology that I am immersed in. I love working with our team of developers to bring our apps to millions of users. I would advise students who are looking for a career to give smaller companies a try. You will gain so much experience. You will see so much more of the the business and how it operates than with larger corporations.”

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