Thursday, December 8, 2022

Don’t compromise – on the vision, your team and your purpose

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Sabine Elsässer
Sabine Elsässer is founder and chief editor of the StartupValleyNews Magazine. She started her career at several international direct sale companys. Since 2007 she works main time as a journalist. While that time she learned more about the Startup Scene, what made her start her own Startup Magazine the StartupValleyNews.

Flox is a revolutionary and intuitive metaverse event platform. It helps drives more engagement in virtual and hybrid events.

Please introduce yourself and your startup Flox to our readers.

I’m Alistair Bryan co-founder of Flox and on the right is my co-founder and CTO Jaie Genadt. I held senior leadership roles at global marketing groups including Havas, IPG and Omnicom, spearheading the technology experience offering for clients including Microsoft and American Express. Flox is a revolutionary and intuitive metaverse event platform. It helps drives more engagement in virtual and hybrid events.

How did you get the idea of Flox?

Having worked in physical real life events and seen the first virtual event platforms that came out we could see there was a need to create something new. Flox came from the idea of a murmuration of birds. The idea that the individual powers the collective experience. So we focussed on the individual user experience to create a far more creative collective one.

Why did you decide to start with Flox?

There was a great quote from Richard Branson “The best thing that can be said about webinars is they give you the sensation of being in a coma without the worry or inconvenience”. That’s the problem we wanted to solve: the 2D gallery view user interface and passive viewing. So we set out to create an active state with meaningful engagement and participation.

What is the vision behind Flox?

We want to create the most human and engaging virtual and hybrid events. Harnessing the ideas and creativity of each individual to fuel the power and progress of the collective.

How difficult was the start and which challenges you had to overcome?

It’s never easy starting a business, but we had a clear idea of what we wanted to achieve. Money and investment are always the difficult moments, but we were lucky enough to raise £1M quickly with investors who could see the market was growing and we had the experience to deliver. Then getting the first client was a big challenge, but we launched with a Fortune 500 global brand and then others, including two more Fortune 500 companies, came afterwards.

Who is your target audience?

Anyone that puts on a live event or experience – CMO’s, CXO, event management, HR directors to name a few. They want connection and collaboration that comes with social interaction, but also the digital sharing, recording and analysis their organisation needs. They might additionally have a sustainability or cost-saving agenda, so prefer a purely virtual platform instead of a virtual-physical hybrid.

Social connection is at the heart of Flox and has been built into our core product, with movement around virtual space and artificial intelligence helping users find and connect with the right people.

Beyond live events and experiences, our customer could be anyone building a ‘digital twin’ – an exact replica of a corporate headquarters, a retail environment or pop-up, a university campus, lab or surgery to make collaboration and education accessible and immediate.

What is the USP of your startup?

To create the most immersive and memorable virtual and hybrid events. With our backgrounds in events and experiential marketing we have created a platform that’s easy to use for event marketers by people who know what it takes to put on an event. We move extremely fast: we can be up and running in 10 days.

Flox’s metaverse offer is far superior to 2D digital alternatives by offering an experience that’s as close to in-person as you can get digitally. Attendees move their digital avatars (personalised to their face with scanning technology) around a defined space, with active intention and more freedom than you would ever get in a video conference.

Can you describe your typical workday ?

I get up about 6am. I don’t function without a cup of tea so the kettle is the first point of call. And I usually start messaging my business partner and co-founder Jaie about 7am. I get the kids off to school and then a dog walk or run (depending on the day) to collect my thoughts on the day ahead. We have a team stand up in the morning to check in on product, development, clients, prospects and the team.

Then it’s a mixture of demos, client meetings and team meetings afterwards. We are cloud-based so we make time to schedule calls – without meaning – to just catch up with the team and check in. We are opening up in the US so the afternoon tends to be more focussed on the calls with the West Coast. Then I finish the day with a check with Jaie and an understanding of what needs to be done next.

Where do you see yourself and your startup Flox in five years?

There are three things I’d like to have achieved:

1. People – a culture-rich and world-renowned integrated family of talent

2. Products – a suite of creative applications targeting Learning, Retail and Entertainment

3. Planet – reduced the CO2 impact of 10,000’s of events and be NETZERO

What 3 tips would you give to founders?

1. Do it now. I think wish I had started this journey years ago.

2. Go for it every day. Chase the leads, have the conversations and ask for what you want.

3. Don’t compromise – on the vision, your team and your purpose.

More information you will find here

Thank you Alistair Bryan for the Interview

Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.

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