It is true that no-one can sell your product as well as you

Nigel Cannings – CTO  Intelligent Voice in Interview

Intelligent Voice was one start-up participating in the “Inception Connect Enterprise” event from NVIDIA. With the “Inception Connect Enterprise” event, NVIDIA creates a platform for AI startups, investors, industry leaders, and others from the Tech community to demonstrate the value of artificial intelligence across all business sectors.

With the Inception program, NVIDIA supports AI start-ups on various levels to help them during the critical phases of product and prototype development and deployment. This is done, among other things, by providing technical support from deep learning experts, hardware discounts and marketing.

How did you get the idea to Intelligent Voice?
I used to have to review large volumes of paper documents as a lawyer: This was very time consuming even if you “speed read”. When I first encountered audio, especially telephone calls, I knew someone needed to find a better way of understanding audio, and of visualising it.

How difficult was it at the start and what challenges did you have to overcome?
From a technology perspective, speech recognition of telephone calls at high speed had never been done before. We had to find new ways of extracting the phonetic content from what is a highly compressed and “dirty” medium, and then turning it into text several hundred times faster than anyone had ever done before

From a business perspective, large banks still don’t like working with start-ups: There is a lot of talk about them being easier to work with, but that then clashes with their purchasing policies, their IT departments, and incumbent vendors who are frightened of innovation.

Who is your target audience?
Banks, law firms and increasingly, insurance companies. But we have a new operation in San Francisco which is dedicated to helping other startups provide secure speech recognition at a reasonable cost, so they don’t need to send sensitive client data (like healthcare discussions) to public speech recognition engines like Google or IBM

What is the USP of your startup?
Actually, there are three! Speed of processing (only possible due to GPUs), visualization of the content through our SmartTranscript™ technology, and cloud accuracy available in a secure platform that can be deployed on-premise or in a secure, private cloud.

Can you describe a typical workday for you?
Half of my life is spent mid-air, often to, from or in the US: When I’m not flying, I’m often speaking at conferences or trade shows: A lot of our business comes out of the US

On ordinary work days I generally cycle in, as it gives me time to think, which is not ideal for my colleagues as the day generally starts with a brain-dump of the new features I want in the product! After that it is coffee, email and phone calls for most of the day. I usually start the things I meant to do at 9am at about 5pm. But to be honest, no day is typical, as there is always a new project to start or a new customer to chase.

Where do you see yourself and your start-up Intelligent Voice in five years?
Hopefully not as the speech recognition arm of a major corporation! I’d like to think that we can expand to become one of the largest and most innovative speech technology companies in the world, providing thought leadership as well as cool technology to our partner base

What 3 tips would you give other Start-up founders on the way?
1. It is true that no-one can sell your product as well as you: But if you intend to sell into the enterprise, find really good partners who can help you. Big businesses feel safer buying new technology from trusted partners

2. Tell everyone what you do, all the time: Get speaker slots, write articles, go to trade shows. And be nice about it. Engage people with enthusiasm and passion, but don’t try to show them how clever you are. If what you do really can help someone, let the product speak for itself, not you.

3. Remember, it always takes twice as long and costs three times as much! And never believe your competitors’ hype: they have all the same problems you have, and probably a few more.

More information you will find here

Thank you Nigel Cannings for the Interview

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

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.


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