Mister Beacon Episode #128
IoSeaApril 20, 2021
What is the state of IoT on the high seas? What can those of us on dry land learn from the evolution of this business we all depend on?
A lot has changed in the past year, and the shipping industry has been no stranger to the effects of COVID-19. Sam Jha joins us back on the podcast after his debut in 2017 to share how the shipping industry has been evolving and what Alpha Ori is doing to enable transparency, analytics and increase productivity. Join us this week to hear about Ship Operations 2.0 and how the Alpha Ori is digitizing the industry with software and sensors one ship at a time.
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Steve Statler 00:16
Welcome to the Mr. Beacon podcast, back for another exciting trip into the world of IoT. This time we're going out to sea, actually going out to sea again, we're making a return visit to an old friend and colleague of mine, Sam Jha, who's the chief product officer at Alpha Ori, who are specializing on bringing IoT to shipping. Sam, welcome back to the podcast.
Sam Jha 00:45
Thank you, Steve. It's a pleasure to be here. pleasure to be back on your show. I've been watching some of your recordings have been you know, you've been doing amazing with all these recordings. So it's really nice to be back.
Steve Statler 00:58
Well, we don't often do boat shipping episodes. The last time we did it was three and a half years ago when you were on the show. And I think this is a fascinating opportunity to see what has changed. I think you fairly early in your voyage feel pardon the pun, you've probably gone a little bit further. So I'd love to just ask you what has happened since we last met? But before we do that, can you just refresh people's memory for anyone that didn't watch that show three and a half years ago? or listen to it? What does your company do?
Sam Jha 01:39
So, we are a b2b technology company. We are there's a word called digitalising. So, we are digitalising the shipping industry, we are bringing the latest technology of big data science machine learning into shipping industry, which has been we're operating in old fashioned way and we are taking them to the next level of operation the way it ought to be managed in the current environment or in the future. So we are digitalising the entire fleet and taking the ship operation or bringing ship operation to Dotto you can say
Steve Statler 02:21
what are the problems that you're solving.
Sam Jha 02:24
So, we are if you look at it, what is ship operation to Dotto, which means transparency, high end analytics. And if bringing productivity and efficiency, real time, you know by by having a real time communication to these vessels. On a high level we are doing the you know these three areas we are targeting. And if you see what are the benefits our customers are having, they're having benefits of increased productivity, cost efficient operations, and dollar savings, because ultimately everything boils down to dollar savings. And not to say or not the least is we are also proud of making shipping sustainable in this world where climate change is an impending disaster moving our way, and shipping is a contributor to that. And through our products. We are helping ship make shipping sustainable as well.
Steve Statler 03:24
How is what you do in how is your business being affected by COVID? I'm really interested in this I hear that there's dozens of massive container ships stuck outside of the border Los Angeles is that the economy is teetering on hyperinflation because costs are going way up. Is that true? What what are you seeing and how is it affecting your company?
Sam Jha 03:52
Excellent question, Steve. To be honest, when COVID struck us, we were in a bit of a dire straits. We were trying to figure out given our supply chain and how things move for our own installation all around the world on different vessels. How do we manage it? So that was a question that was the one of four and foremost on our mind? And then will there be enough supply? So let us first talk about how did the COVID impact the shipping industry and I'll tell you how did it impact us and how what we did to mitigate that. So to your point shipping industry, when saw a quick, you know, slump, but it also saw a V shaped recovery when people were sitting at home with this discretionary cash. They didn't want to spend where you know, so they ended up buying a lot of things online. So actually the buying dip, but it went up right away. So there were demands of all these goods coming from Asia. For example, to the United States. So that continued, that didn't stop. So there was a same thing happened on the tanker industry and the gas industry, the demand was dip demand dipped for a while, but it came right back up. So that's how it impacted shipping industry. So we see, okay, some slap in demand, but it came right back up. When it came to our industry, our what we do is that we install hardware on ships that I which you know, which collects data or from sensors on the ship, once we get the data then sold on the cloud, which is great, then we can do whatever we want with the data, you know, for the for our customers. But initial installation saw a complete stop, because our people couldn't fly to China couldn't fly to Europe couldn't fly to us to do all these installations. So what we did, we completely revamped the supply chain. So instead of getting the product from Taiwan, to India, working on the product, and then then shipping it along with the people to certain locations, we revamped the entire product entire testing was left moved, if if we can say that, and that the entire all the servers and hardware that was ready in Taiwan got shipped directly to the ships. And now the product is there, how do we install it? Do we say we struck a deal with local people in all various sports, who will go to the ship, when ship arrives, they'll go to the ship hardware already exists is there they'll install it. And once they install and the data starts flowing, then listener control completely. That's what we did, we created a world wide web in a way of our own installation mechanics. So we have installations in you know, all the boards, there are many boards in Asia, in Europe, and us where people go to the ship, install it. So the data starts flowing. It took us few months to do all that work. But I tell you how good things happen if you just try. So our capacity of installations went multifold. So if we were able to install, let's say, around 10 ships at that price per month prior to COVID. Now post COVID, I can install. Right now I can install 30 ships per month. And there is no limit to it. Because it's become it's made, it's been made scalable. There are people sitting there are contractors in different ports ready to install.
Steve Statler 07:42
That's interesting. I mean, we actually experienced something similar. We would do, we had this distributed supply chain. We were making tags in Germany, designing them in Israel. And it was very logical doing it that way. But what we were finding was, this was the innovation cycles were taking a long time. And then COVID came and suddenly we could no longer send people from Israel to Germany to work in the facility of our partners. So we ended up buying in the scene, a million dollar manufacturing capability, one of these machines that makes the tags that we make, and we set it up in Israel and and suddenly our innovation cycles went from four months to weeks. So it's like COVID forced us to re examine things. And suddenly, it's been accelerated seems similar to what you just described for you guys. So how has so that's how COVID has impacted you. How is it impacting the use cases? Is it impacting the use cases that you're being asked to implement?
Sam Jha 09:03
Absolutely. So as you know, this, people used to go on the ship, to do inspection, and many other maintenance activities, all that. So we started, we started to see when the COVID hit, we saw some cancellations in our contract, immediate dip because people were trying to preserve cash in the face of uncertainty. But very quickly, we started to see a shift in demand of automation and remote monitoring and remote diagnostics. Because Hey, I cannot have somebody from Japan fly out to Oslo to do this diagnostics. So can I do it remotely? How do I get data remotely? And guess what? That's the sweet spot that we were in, that we can get you live data from anywhere to anywhere and provide you all the analytics that you can add you can get. So this started to roll the conversation started. And suddenly we saw the drop in customers, it stopped. And in fact, many of the new customers died inquiring about our software, our proprietary product smart ship our platform, that how can we get digital platform? Right? And if I get it, can you tell me what the values are? So there is a resurgence of activity, including demands of digitalization off ships and vessels, so that things can be done remotely, rather than visiting the ship, which was the norm.
Steve Statler 10:45
So, it sounds like COVID forced you to change the way you did deployments, and it increased your capacity, it sounded like it forced your customers to be more efficient, which drove demand for your products. Where is the what's the constraint? What is it that is? What's the bottleneck in your business that if you had a magic wand you'd remove in order to scale even faster?
Sam Jha 11:12
I think that that was the question, we were struggling, the moment I was able to scale the installation. Because earlier, we thought that, oh, we can't hire so many people and we can fly them out. And that is out of the window right now. Which means our installation capability has gone up. So what is stopping it despite all those changes that we made, there is some limitation still there, which which means you have to organize the hardware arrival on the ship. And then somebody has to go there to install. So now imagine a ship sailing from Rotterdam to Brazil. And we say okay, we are ready to ship it. But now we gotta wait until it reaches Brazil. And guess what, we don't want to ship it in Brazil, because there is a very high tax there. So let's wait till it comes back to Rotterdam. Now suddenly, you are 45 days behind or 30 days behind depending on the speed of the vessel. So the question started to come, can we build the product, where we take the hardware installation element completely out. Now, of course, as you know, IoT would require a certain amount of installation or so that it can connect to sensors and take data. So we are now working on a product which will not be which will not do all the things that is done by a smart ship professional, which is our flagship product. But some of the high demand applications from that package can be done completely. Without hardware installation. That means we collect the CV, we collect the public data, merge with some private data and make it a software only product for those specific applications. We are in the middle of developing that software, which will go live in second half of this year. And that installation can happen 300 ship installation in one month. Because it's a software only product, solving specific needs, not the complete digitalization, but solving specific needs of companies who are looking to enhance the profitability and fuel savings.
Steve Statler 13:44
And then give me a few examples of what those needs are that you can solve with without the hardware. And then what I'd like to do is ask you how that then, you know what, what are the extra things you can do when you add the hardware. But I think this is super important. It doesn't apply to goes beyond ships. It's like infrastructure hardware is the thing that slows you down. And slowing scaling is obviously the enemy of any business, any startup especially so what is it that you can do what what can you deliver? What are the benefits you can deliver without hardware? And then what does the hardware let you do after that? Chuck?
Sam Jha 14:27
Chuck? So when you look at the commercial side of shipping, one of the biggest problems they struggled with is that how do I maximize the asset or maximize the profit from this asset? And in order to know that you would want to know how can I it's called DC one of the very common word in shipping that is called todo charter equivalent, which is if I make a trip How fast can I make? Or how slow Can I make? And what is the difference between earning per day that I will have either moving too fast or moving too slow, because as you move too fast, you're gonna burn more fuel, as you know, and you move too slow, you're going to take more time to reach the port. So, given the market condition, what is what are the factors that I should consider to maximize the earning per day Mr. So that is something we can solve by our new product called is called Smart Voyager, by the way, we can solve by giving them the options that if you want to go if you want to maximize fuel saving, or maximize earning per day, you can have that calculation and based on your given condition, you can make a call for example, I don't have any any charter waiting for me once they complete the voice, that means I'll be sitting idle over there. So guess what, I'm going to go slow and maximize my fuel savings, which is the highest expense on the vessel. And if I have charter waiting the market is hot, then can I spend more time more money on fuel reach fast deliver it and grab onto next charter, what does it do to earning per day on my asset. So, these problems, we are using lots of codes, many public data and individualized ship data coming from shore coming from the ship, even though lesser frequency than what smart ship can give us. And we can merge all that in the code to provide these decision support system to our customers and let them make the call based on the condition what they want to do. So this we can provide right now without having to install hardware. Now to your second question, what else can you do if you install hardware. And if we install hardware, now, we can do much more than this application right we can do predictive maintenance that we are doing on many of the vessels, we are catching anomalies, which prevents failures and thereby reducing breakdown saving on spare parts. At the same time, we are extending the overhauling period of many machineries, by showing the health score and the data how good the machinery is performing. So you do not need to do it at 8000 hours which has been prescribed in the manual, you can extend it to 10,000 hours. So for for doing these things, it cannot be done without getting the sensor data directly from the ship. And we will have to install hardware. That's another example of what additional things we can do by having hardware installed, then comes notification. And so and so on, we can talk more about that is that how can we get on time notifications for you know, when you're crossing in a hazardous zone when you're getting data which is which which is matching or which is a wayward data compared to where it should be. So there are many, many other applications of having hardware on board. But there there is a good amount of benefit to be had from the software, which can be which people can quickly be trained on, which can be rolled on at a faster level at the large number of vessels. And keep in mind, some of our customers, they say I'm going to charter a ship for only three months or one month, I do not have Sam, I do not have time for you to take three months or two months to come and install everything hardware and this or that, because I may not have that chip after three months, I may decide to let it go. So can you give me something which I can roll out roll in like one day or two days with training and it goes on? So that's another area we are looking at.
Steve Statler 19:15
I got to ask you what is a hazardous hazardous zone? Are we talking pirates or what?
Sam Jha 19:21
Well, when it comes to hazardous zone, then yes, piracy, the bad weather. At the same time, there are certain zones called environmental compliance zones, those are not hazardous, those are safe zones. But when you enter those safe zones, you ought to be burning certain kinds of fuel you cannot be polluting that zone. So around the US for example, we have this environmental compliance area that before the vessel can enter, they must change over the fuel to go to low circle fuel. Otherwise they'll be at penalised by the cost guy now authorities.
Steve Statler 20:03
Fascinating. You touched on some things that give me an opportunity to do IoT buzzword Bingo. You talked about analytics in the cloud. And I'm gonna take the machine learning AI buzzwords, I'm assuming that's part of your portfolio. What Where are you actually finding a AI is able to really add value versus just being part of buzzword Bingo.
Sam Jha 20:39
Sure, sure. Yes, I agree with it. That is a buzzword like nowadays everybody's talking about it. You talk about any business, they're doing it right. So let's understand the AI. What is artificial intelligence? Let's talk spend a minute on this one. So, when we look at when we talk about AI, the first thing that flashed into our mind at least few people's mind, not everyone is but those movies you've seen from Hollywood, right? A Terminator trying to terminate someone and they think like humans, and and they can out thank you because the machine could be more powerful and all that. That level of AI is very, very, very far away. You're not talking that level of AI. We're not talking singularity. That's for sure. You know, Mr. McCarney, a Harvard professor of ours, he calls it a strong AI. He said, Okay, let's, let's redefine AI. Let's call that strong AI. What is happening all around the world on AI right now is automation of certain tasks, which were earlier performed by humans, but now no longer need humans in that chain. And that's all AI is doing right now. And let's call this a weak AI, for example. That's what he calls it Dr. Lacan he calls it weak AI. And that has tremendous amount of value. You know, one example you can say, you know, and financial, which which deploys it that you can apply for certain loan, no human is in between to approve that loan, it gets approved based on various data that it collects, and your ability to pay. And that entire calculation happens based on AI. So tomorrow, if a large number of people from your profile, start not your profile, my profile, I'm just giving an example, it starts failing on on delivering that loan or meeting their obligations, the algorithm automatically adjusts the score, and moves the certificate approval process for a higher score. This is all being done without human being in place. And that's the kind of AI we are talking about. So in our case, where we are using AI, for example, in predictive maintenance, the algorithm learns it is trained for three, four months with the data, it's really good supervised learning, it learns that machine and say, okay, at various conditions, this is how machines should be performing. But if there is an anomaly, if the if the generator is running at half the load, it should not have you know, let's say, every other month cylinder is giving me an exhaust temperature of 270. And one of them gives 320. At that load, there'll be no alarm sounding because alarm, let's say alarm is set for 370. You would not notice it, but it but our algorithm finds the anomaly, that why this is behave based on the historical data and pattern. This is anomalous to that. And let's call it out, let's raise an alert and provide effective things that the maintenance guy can perform to check what are the possibilities for that for this to happen. So it takes like a chief engineer. And that's how we bring that's how we are able to bring AI into our predictive maintenance algorithm to achieve certain tasks, which only a human could decipher earlier, our algorithm is deciphering and helping and aiding you in your decision.
Steve Statler 24:31
So that's reassuring the AI is not going to kill us. I don't know whether it's going to remove jobs. I think it's kind of inevitable. I don't think there's anything we can do to stop these efficiencies. So, last question, you know, where are things headed? What's, what's next for alpha Ori? Where are you going?
Sam Jha 24:59
Well We are headed to, you know, have the success that we are looking for. But before I tell you where we are headed, one of the things that I wanted to just tell, you know, the various learnings that we've had. We started this with a big vision, big dreams. And many of the dreams have become successful or as we had dreamt. But at the same time, there are so many challenges that were thrown our way. Or either we didn't anticipate it at came our way. natural or manmade, whichever way you can say. The one thing that I would say that one of the learning for us in startup is that nothing goes as planned, right, you should be able to get what the hands you're dealt with, and how you adapt to it, how quickly you can come back with a solution to either unseen challenge and our newly present challenges. That has been a fun element or element, sometimes frustrating element, other times. But that has been one learning that we one should always be prepared for unexpected. In any startup, I mean, it can go for any business. But the uncertainty can have much more impact when you're trying to just establish yourself, it be it could become existential question. And we deal with so many existential question. You know, we dealt with it in the beginning. Now, as we have more and more customers, we have more stability, and things have kind of calmed down a little. But if anybody's doing a startup, they should think about it that yes, there will be many existential questions that will come our way. And that we'll have to deal with it for sure. Now, going to where we are headed, we are headed to just by numbers, if I can see. We did 100 ships last year, we are looking to do 250 new smart ships on top of the 100 by end of this year. So we are targeting 350 Smart ships. In 2021. We are on track to deliver 450. ship the ship bomb, which is our EMP product on 450 vessels. And we are on target to exceed our revenue target for this year. This is all looking out, we're heading in the right direction for sure, despite all those challenges, but aspirationally, where I want to be in one year time or year and a half time where I'm able to convert non believers into believers in digital transformation. And that's where we want alpha Read to Succeed in in a way where it not only inspires us who work for it, but inspires some of those non believers to see the success of digital transformation of their own organization and take up that journey. That's where we want to be aspirationally.
Steve Statler 28:26
So it sounds like you basically want to move from maybe the early majority to the late majority to start getting some of the people that aren't the forward looking ones that hopefully you'll have the metrics of success that will convince people who don't care about the technology, never heard of IoT inherently skeptical and machine learning to just do it because their colleagues are doing it and they're saving money making money and they want to do the same. Absolutely. Very good.
Sam Jha 28:57
Yeah, that will go a long way in making this not only this company successful, which we are on our way, but making this industry successful making this industry sustainable for for, you know, for our globe. So yeah, that's the that's our aspirational goal. And we're looking forward to continuing that journey.
Steve Statler 29:17
Wonderful. Well, more power to you, Sam. Congratulations on the success in the face of adversity. Thank you very much for staying in touch coming back on the show. Thank you for using the word existential. I think you're the first person to use that on the show. I think you've just raised the kind of cachet of the show by your vocabulary, some great insights that I think go beyond shipping into broad IoT. So really appreciate it.
Sam Jha 29:46
Thank you so much, Steve. As always, it's a pleasure to be with you on the show or off the show. It's always a pleasure to interact with you. I always learned something new when I talked to you. So thanks for the opportunity.
Steve Statler 30:00
All right, very good. Well, this week's episode was brought to you by Jessie Hazelrigg, who's our producer, and Nelson Fernandez, who's our editor. My son is still working at Starbucks one year in. So I want to thank them for their program for supporting young adults with autism. It's amazing. And lastly, I want to thank you, our listeners, our viewers for your loyalty. And I'm impressed you made it almost to the end of this, this episode, please do tell your friends colleagues, racists on whatever platform you're using to watch or listen to us. And I look forward to seeing you next time. So Sam, tell me a little bit about your career. I think people I tend to interview people with interesting jobs, I think you got an interesting job. It's probably people who want your job or a job like it. How did you get started? Where did you grow up?
Sam Jha 31:09
Well, I grew up in India. And then after having done engineering work for about five, six years, then I came here for masters to the US. And then interestingly enough, I did an internship in a telecom company, even without any prior knowledge of Telecom. And they gave me an offer. Before I even went back to work. I went back to finish my last year in school, they gave me an offer. And I decided to join them right after graduation. So it worked out well, from that point of view. telecom was hot that time in 1996, they had done the deregulation of telecom in the US. And there were so many companies. So I just got lucky to be in a hot company, but no, by any standard at that time. Yeah. And having worked there for a few years, decided to move to West Coast. Because we had some family here and I just happened to apply in Qualcomm got an interview. And if you went well, but before even, you know I could get an offer of my wife was pushing me to get a job in West Coast because she saw the beautiful weather of San Diego. She like this is where we are we'd Yeah. So yeah, so it worked out. Got a job with Qualcomm. And in fact, I would say not one. But there were so many jobs at Qualcomm that changed my career every two, three years, about 10 years in Qualcomm. There. By the time I was actually ready to leave Qualcomm, or are I, I was doing well, I thought, but I had an a very interesting offer to join a startup. In fact, startup startup with some investors. And this had been my, you know, lifelong dream to work in a startup. So what could be better opportunity? How do visitors come
Steve Statler 33:13
to interrupt you? Sure. Yeah, that's an amazing opportunity. I want to pause because you're like moving forward rapidly. And we can spend a lot of time talking about all the jobs that you did, but so you're working at Qualcomm for 10 years, which is a long time in high tech. But you it wasn't just one job, it was many jobs. How do you get to a point where investors in a startup are coming to you? Because that doesn't? often that doesn't happen to most people? How did it happen to you?
Sam Jha 33:46
Well, it happened for two reasons. One, that the investor became a friend because we climbed Kilimanjaro together. So he became he came to know me over there, I came to know Him, we became good friends. And then he found out that I had spent about six years prior to coming to Telecom, I'd spent six years in shipping. So I knew that very well, that industry that he he came from. So we had too much in common. And then we kept talking for a few years, about some interesting opportunities happening in shipping industry. And that's when he proposed to, you know, do a startup with us.
Steve Statler 34:27
So this is an important thing. So did you know someone who was an investor and then persuade them to climb Kilimanjaro with you? Or were you climbing Kilimanjaro and met an investor who happened to have a set of common interests in the background?
Sam Jha 34:46
Well, we had a common friend. So one of my classmate, who was vice president in Twitter. He was my undergrad classmate. And that was the common thread between the investor and me. And that's how I got to know. That's how we were on the same trip because it was organized by my friend who was a common friend. He organized the trip to go to Kilimanjaro, and then I met him for the first time on the trip.
Steve Statler 35:12
All right, this sounds like it's gonna be very hard for other people to replicate, find a friend who knows someone who's an investor, and then arrange to climb a very high mountain with them. Probably just maybe we distill it down to networking and maintaining relationships and doing not being just work focused, you reduce the Do you think the climb had something to do with your relationship burgeoning the fact that you did this difficult, dangerous thing together?
Sam Jha 35:46
Absolutely. Because mountaineering is something that is even in some of the MBA classes, they encourage people to take up. Is that what is mountaineering? mountaineering is setting a very high goal for yourself that I'm going to climb the very high mountain, not getting intimidated by the task, plan it accordingly, and take one step at a time towards that ultimate goal. And before you know you're on top of it. So if you're going to think about how am I going to go to the 20,000 foot mountain, you're going to get intimidated. So you plan it out. And you say all I'm going to think about it today, what I'm going to do and what is my next task, go towards the next action towards that goal, which is the next step one, put one foot ahead of the next one. And keep moving
Steve Statler 36:35
sounds that makes total sense. So if you want to meet overachievers you need to do things, overachievers, do. And clearly, you know, versus I don't know, sitting back watching Episode 50 of the sopranos, which is what I was doing last night, you decided you were going to climb a mountain? And who are you likely to meet? You're gonna meet interesting people. That's a no lose proposition other than the the obvious physical peril. Okay. So you climb them out? Did you? How far did you get on the mountain?
Sam Jha 37:09
We did the summit. I, yeah, I did not have a nice photograph, I can send it to you. We did the summit. In fact, there were 19 of us in that 19 of us in that group. And each one of us submitted. So this was the organizers goal, that many of the first time climbers His goal was, how can I take a group of people who are not into it, who are not experts, some of them have not done it. But the goal is here, to all of us to summit to help each other during the journey, motivate each other, help each other to make sure we all finish the goal together. That was the purpose. That was and that guy was the common friend, is our CEO now in the company,
Steve Statler 37:57
a man Yes. Yeah. So do send me the photograph. Normally, we have these very nicely airbrushed business portraits, people striking a pose, which I like kind of, but we'll have a picture. Instead, we'll have a picture of you on top of Mount Kilimanjaro. And people will wonder why on earth, they got that as their thumbnail, and then hopefully they'll figure out and appreciate it. Yeah, I remember doing something not probably quite as impressive. But we went on a team building course back in the day when companies invested in that. And I was a manager of a team and we went to the Lake District in England. And we had to climb up a waterfall. And the instructor kind of got it wrong, and they've been heavy rainfall just went up. And so like, it turned into a life and death situation. And then we had then we got lowered down a cliff, we were rappelling down a cliff into a cave, which was like enormously claustrophobic jumping off a ledge in the cave into pitch black landing into a lake. And the only way to get out was through a sump where you basically have to go, we can see the the light coming out from under the water. We had to dive down and come up. By the time we've been through that it was an amazing bonding experience. It really, you know, it all came out all of the tensions that maybe you can bottle up in in, not express that it all came out. But we were bonded. So well. I still keep in touch with the people in that team.
Steve Statler 39:38
Thank you, Sam. Great to hear that. I guess. Before we move on, though, so you met you got together and then how did you figure out who was going to do what in this company that you were starting out?
Sam Jha 39:53
Excellent. So what happens like in any startup right, feel free Get together. And he said, this is the tasks we're going to do. And then we talk about Okay, what what do you bring to the table where we can maximize the qualities or the skills that any you know you have or an individual possesses in that team. So, we looked at it, we said there was a guy, x, Cisco x ruckus, wireless, he had been in engineering for a long time. So he is gonna do CTO or engineering slash and your head of engineering role, that was no brainer. At that time, the first goal was that you who can take this new vision to market who can bring this new vision, create a product out of it, to meet that vision, and take it to market. So since I was the first employee officially in that organization of 40 technologies, which is called so I became kind of a business, so Chief Business Officer, Chief Product officer, who was also writing the PR, DS, and anything else that had to be done. So basically, we have all wore multiple hats. And that's why my first title was Chief Business Officer and Chief Product officer doing both. As we grew a little bit, there's another fellow from Singapore joined us, and then I gave up my business responsibility, and he became kind of head of sales. So there wasn't a clear distinction upfront who should do why we basically say, okay, who has the skill set to start it, and which, which one, which means of the work that you want to take up. So also, obviously, in my, in my experience, I've had had multiple experiences in different roles. So I raised my one hand to hand or whatever, wherever the gaps we found we raised hand and we picked it up.
Steve Statler 41:54
Very cool. That's really interesting insight into how the this startup came to be. Thank you, Sam. Sure.