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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.

Loupedeck: Loupedeck Live S make editing images and videos easier

Please introduce yourself and your startup Loupedeck to our readers!

Hello! My name is Felix Hartwigsen and I’m the Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer at Loupedeck based in Helsinki, Finland. Loupedeck was founded in 2016 by a team of photo enthusiasts in 2016 to make editing images and videos easier. The associated crowdfunding campaign was a huge success, exceeding its goal by 488 percent! Now here we are in 2022 with a team of 50+ people about to release Loupeck’s 4th console, Loupedeck Live S.

How did you get the idea of Loupedeck?

Our founder Mikko loves taking pictures, but hates editing them on a PC with a mouse and keyboard. It quickly became clear that many creative people feel the same way as Mikko.

Loupedeck started as a one-man project and quickly became much bigger. It was a bit like the classic story of the small garage company that grew rapidly. After successful crowdfunding and seed-funding, we soon hired people for different departments of the company, such as marketing, sales, customer service, etc.

Why did you decide to start with Loupedeck?

For our first console, the classic Loupedeck, we focused on the crowdfunding platform Indiegogo. That was our proof of concept, the proof that a market existed for our idea. Through this campaign, we attracted the attention of well-known angel investors from Finland, some of whom we were able to get on board. We closed the last major Series A financing round with capital from Razer and PlayVenture in the summer of 2021.

What is the vision behind Loupedeck?

Our vision is to bring back fun to people editing their content – by letting them press real buttons and turn dials to adjust color values, select scenes, create content, stream games, and much more. Loupedeck consoles see themselves as an analog Swiss Army knife for digital creators. A tool that, thanks to comprehensive integrations, can be used with any relevant creative software – from Adobe Lightroom to Photoshop, from Final Cut to OBS.

The Loupedeck+ is designed for photographers and videographers and, thanks to dedicated dials and buttons, speeds up work with Adobe programs such as Lightroom or Photoshop. Let’s take the example of a wedding photographer: After a long day of shooting, I love to have several thousand photos that need to be culled, rated and edited. All of these steps can be assigned to a specific button on the Loupedeck+. Where before you had to search through menus and move sliders with the mouse, now you just need to push a button on the Loupedeck to perform a series of actions.

The Loupedeck Live continues this key idea, but is much more compact than the Loupedeck+ and features a freely customizable and swipeable touchscreen. The Loupedeck Live is designed for ambitious content creators and streamers. Especially the latter have their hands full during a live session – and are happy if they can change scenes, fade in overlays or activate chatbots instantly at the touch of a button. 

With the Loupedeck CT, we offer experienced professionals a fully comprehensive tool including a large, configurable rotary wheel. The CT can be used in all conceivable creative workflows – from image editing, audio and video editing to a controller for live streaming.

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

The most difficult challenge so far has been the Corona pandemic. We produce our products in China, and most of the people working there came from the Wuhan region. Which means that the entire production was shut down for two months. As a Start-up with small inventories, this hit us extra hard. In some regions, we were completely sold out and could not cover the demand. When the factories were able to reopen under strict conditions, the next blow hit us with the component/raw material shortage. Relevant components had delivery times of 12 months and longer. Fortunately, the situation has eased considerably meanwhile. 

Who is your target audience?

Our product portfolio addresses photographers, videographers, content creators and streamers who regularly create content – be it professionally or privately. Our goal is to offer everyone, from beginner to seasoned professional, a suitable tool to make their creative workflows faster, more precise and more productive. And productivity seekers and people who work remotely also have fun with our consoles – be it through plugins for the Spotify playlist, various Microsoft services or the calculator that can be called up at the touch of a finger.

What is the USP of your startup?

At Loupedeck, we design and distribute custom consoles that eliminate technical barriers to streamline creative processes. With Loupedeck consoles, you’re connected to your creative software seamlessly through smooth tactile controls. Simply push a button or turn the dial and you’re ready to create content, edit photos and videos.

Can you describe your typical workday?

Especially in a young growth company every day is different, but I tend to start early in the morning while it’s still quiet to do work that requires more focus.

Later in the morning or early afternoon I usually have meetings with my team, agencies, or other stakeholders from different functions of the business to discuss ongoing projects, plans, key metrics, strategy, etc.

The afternoon in general tends to be meeting heavy but I always try to keep some space in my calendar for ad-hoc or if my team needs to support with anything.

I usually leave around 16.30 to pick up my kids.

Any time zone sensitive calls or meetings often require additional working time later in the evening or very early mornings.

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

With the Loupedeck Live S, the next product is already in the wings, with release planned for October 2022. The Live S is a scaled-down version of the Loupedeck Live and is aimed at price-conscious streaming beginners. In cooperation with Razer, we also recently presented the Razer Streaming Controller, which is based on the Loupedeck Live in terms of appearance and technology and uses the same software. This will continue to be our path in the future: licensing our software to more major providers. There’s also the Marketplace, which we are continuously filling with plugins, profiles, sounds and item packages – it’s filled with over 80 pieces of content already after a short time. This is another area where we want to and will continue to integrate partners and third-party providers.

What 3 tips would you give to founders?

Ask for advice: whether it’s from other founders or people in your network. When building a startup, you often get into supposed blind alleys, but at the end it always continues. With outside help, you can usually see the path much faster.

Take care of yourself: It takes a balance to startup, no one can power through 24/7 and perform well.

Smile: Setbacks are quite normal when founding a company. Successes that are achieved together push you even more. 

More information you will find here

Thank you Felix Hartwigsen 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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