Mister Beacon Episode #186
Revolutionizing Healthcare Asset Tracking with BlyottOctober 17, 2023
This week on the Mr. Beacon Podcast, we're excited to have a returning guest, Gery Pollet, the Founder and Managing Director of Blyott, a company with a focus on the medical world. Blyott's mission? To revolutionize how hospitals keep track of their valuable and often expensive equipment.
Blyott has gained recognition for developing innovative Bluetooth tracking tags designed to address the unique challenges faced by healthcare institutions. Did you know that the healthcare industry is a 9.5 trillion dollar market? It makes up about 11% of the total global GDP. Which means there are plenty of opportunities for companies like Blyott to carve out their own niche.
One of the standout achievements of Blyott is the creation of a heat-resistant Bluetooth tracking tag, capable of withstanding temperatures up to a scorching 150 degrees centigrade. They've also introduced a tag with a paper battery, pushing the boundaries of both technology and sustainability.
Gery shares his insights on the current cost of these tags, which currently stands at 7 euros. However, he envisions a future where volume purchases can bring the price down to below 1 euro, making them more accessible for healthcare providers across the globe.
The conversation takes an in-depth look at how Blyott is working to bring their technology to scale in hospitals. Gery delves into the three significant challenges for implementing their tracking system in healthcare settings, highlighting the complexities and opportunities for innovation.
One of the intriguing use cases discussed is the consignment use case, particularly in the context of suppliers providing pace-making devices to hospitals. Gery explains the challenges faced when hospitals fail to report their usage, and the resulting difficulties for manufacturers in securing payments. Blyott's tracking tags not only streamline this process but also ensure that the oldest equipment is used first, reducing waste and improving overall efficiency in healthcare operations.
Join us for an engaging discussion on the intersection of technology, healthcare, and innovation with Gery Pollet, as we explore the potential of Blyott's Bluetooth tracking solutions in transforming the way medical equipment is managed. We hope you enjoy it!
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Steve Statler 00:00
Welcome to the Mr. Beacon podcast this week, we're going to be focusing on a $9.5 trillion market. According to the World Health Organization, that's how big the healthcare market is, it represents about 11% of the global, gross domestic product. And within that, the IoT market is $127 billion of spend in 2023. And it's due to more than double by 2020. Ah, so that's an amazing target to focus on. We're going to be talking to one of the best entrepreneurs I know in the space, his name's Jerry poet, he is the CEO and founder of blyat, based over in Europe, lives in Belgium customers around the world. He's been on the podcast before, but I think you'll find the update, really interesting. blyat have got some new beacons and tags out, they've been growing their business. So we'll talk about some of the use cases that are really getting traction. So if you're a Solution Architect, or you just want to see where IoT is moving, then I think there's something for everyone here, you'll hear about the business, you'll hear about the technology, you'll hear a bit of gossip, you'll get his advice on where to focus and where the growth is coming from. So enjoy the conversation. The Mr. Beacon ambient IoT podcast is sponsored by Wiliot, bringing intelligence to every single thing. So Jerry, welcome back to the podcast.
Gery Pollet 01:50
Steve, it's always a pleasure to talk to you.
Steve Statler 01:53
Likewise. Likewise, I prefer when we do it in person, you and I have enjoyed some really good meals together when I've been over in Belgium, where you're based at least some of the time. So I wanted to get you back on the show, because you fairly recently announced a Bluetooth tag, which is very thin and quite low cost. And obviously, this podcast has meandered over the years. And it's about IoT, it's about Bluetooth beacons. But But really, the thing that captures my imagination is Ambien Internet of Things, I think you've definitely done some great pioneering work with going back to my day job in the past with with the arts. And now you've got this son, this new, cool looking bit of hardware. So I want to give you a chance to tell us about that and ask you about it. And you know, you are one of the quintessential entrepreneurs in this space. And I want to pick your brains about this area that you've focused on healthcare, what you're seeing the trends are, what are the use cases. And just kind of get an update on your company blyat, which I think has been doing some really good work over the years. So maybe we should start off by allowing you to spend a moment or two just for people that haven't watched your last visit, which was back in 2022. It seems like ages ago, but tell tell people that don't know blog, what blog it is and what you do?
Gery Pollet 03:36
Sure, I'm happy to tell you maybe a bit backgrounds. It was 2019. And I was asked it was more consultancy, job for hospital to help them find the right asset tracking technology. So we looked at several technologies going from RFID Wi Fi, ultra wide bands live fi and also Bluetooth, we spoke with several manufacturers. And I went back to them with with the conclusion I said you definitely have to go for Bluetooth, it's because what we saw at that time is up more and more Wi Fi Access Point manufacturers were integrating Bluetooth into their access point, which means that if you deploy such an infrastructure in for instance, a hospital, you didn't, you did not need to buy any other infrastructure. So I said you definitely have to go for Bluetooth. And secondly, I'm very interested in building a startup around because we had a tough time we looked at several solutions, but they are quite expensive and difficult to setup where we saw a clear trend to build everything immediately in the cloud. So the idea was simply due to tax on beds for instance, the stacks are being picked up by the existing Wi Fi access When we're building goods, everything's streamed to the internet. And from there, we'll web tools, but also rest API's to integrate with other applications in order to make it easier for nurses, for instance, to find certain equipment. So that's how it started, we started developing in December of 2019, we went live with a very first version of the product in by the end of that year. And since that time, we have been deployed in dozens of hospitals, no longer only in Belgium, but also in other countries, we have clients in Canada and in Australia, and in Chile. On the other side, and Russia, unfortunately, we're not allowed to sell them. But Northern Europe, so we are a bit everywhere now, with a clear focus on on health care, because when you look at healthcare, the Airoli is quite easy to, to explain. If you look at a typical hospital of 500 beds, on average, they have 10 moving assets for beds. So think about a pimp, bladder scanner, things like that, with an average value of 4000 euros per assets. So the cost of the asset is quite high. So if you put a tackle it's at a time of 1020 euros, they may was not a problem to do that. And so on one site, the assets are quite expensive and a lot of sites, you could clearly show where the profits could be made by reducing search time by reducing loss of equipment, increasing process flows, etc. So if you ask me, where did you came from? And where is the industry heading to? In first instance, it was really Okay, where is these assets? Can you help me finding it? I see two clear directions right now. It's one of them is what we call Big location data. We have some hospitals who deployed over 10,000 of these attacks on equipment, so you're sitting on a lot of data. So we can help them, for instance, show how assets are being utilized. So if they want to replace them here, too, they need to buy as many as before, can it be less, very important also in the strategy when it comes to sustainability, sustainability and recycling of stuff. So that's one very clear direction. The other direction we see is that it's no longer only about asset tracking, but also about sensing information. And the good thing is, what you see happening right now is that you have more and more Bluetooth technology coming out with all kinds of sensors built in, going over air quality, just got recently one that this has built in radar. So you can even use measured the heartbeat of a patient by just putting a tackle the ceiling up over the beds. So it's going to be a tremendous evolution in the coming years, I think in healthcare because of this technology, which is easy to implement. And quite inexpensive.
Steve Statler 08:28
I mean, you're not alone in targeting healthcare, I think it's the smart place to focus on and as a result, lots of people are focusing on it. You know, over here, there's like Stanley healthcare. And there's a ton of folks, how do you how do you differentiate? Is that your regional focus or what what what are the things that you focus on in order to compete in this very competitive space?
Gery Pollet 08:56
Standard? Will no use one of my standard sales pitches slides. What I always say when we try to differentiate is the fact that our solution is quite easy to implement, because we try to use the existing infrastructure. So we support all major vendors out there, like Aruba list, Cisco, juniper, Fortinet named it. So that's one of the things we try to differentiate it make sure that, guys if you have the right infrastructure in place, don't worry, we will try to reuse it as much as possible. The second thing is it's purely cloud based. So you just connect to your Wi Fi network, to our cloud. And that's it. So very easy to buy a fully cloud based. The third component is what we call the big, big location data. So we work together with sauce, a lot of ticks on that it's really to what can we learn about all this? A woven tons of assets inside the hospital. The third advantage is that we offer a pay as you grow model. So it's a very small, yeah hurdle to step in and start using the solution, the solution.
Steve Statler 10:14
And who is typically the buyer, when you're engaging with these hospitals?
Gery Pollet 10:21
Yeah, there are several personas as to. And it's a challenge, because very often, and I will give you a few examples, if you you sell a solution to one persona, you solve his problem. And that's okay, but not a problem of the rest of the organization, which means that maybe you will take only the beds, because he's responsible for the maintenance of the beds, you did not solve the problem of the nursing director was looking to decrease the stress on the nursing staff. So in general, we are talking to, let's say, the guy responsible for the biomedical equipment, because he's responsible for doing the maintenance of all type of things. And we can, of course, help him decrease the search time. The second persona we try to talk to is the head of nursing staff. The third one is the logistics, director. And the fourth one is the let's say, the CFO, where you can show with, with their oyster this, what they can expect to realize and in savings. The one persona we always try to avoid is the the ICT director or the CIO, because very often are too busy. And they don't really know the problem on the floor. So they say, either they say, We don't know, we don't need that, or we don't have time to, to implement it. Yeah. But what we see happening now is that because of this whole ESG, strategy, ecology, sustainability governance, is that it's no really appealing what you're offering to the sea level to the CEO, to show how these kind of technologies can help them reach their sustainability goals.
Steve Statler 12:18
And how can you explain how that works? What's the link between ESG and what you're doing?
Gery Pollet 12:25
Work? There are several ruzi. If you look at the social part, it's just by decreasing the stress on employees by making sure they have less time to live to search that that's one of them. Yes. Social, the one we're focusing on really is about circular economy. You have 100 pumps, but do you really need 100 pumps? So let's look how often they are being used when, if you need to replace them, maybe you only need 80 of them. So this kind of thing, which then in return can decrease the co2 footprint, etc. But it's still to be very honest, very early face, sport of the pitch we're bringing, but we feel it's currently on every healthcare organization's agenda. And we don't bring the solution and we're only a little part of the solution.
Steve Statler 13:20
What are your thoughts on the Ambient IoT opportunities? Because what you've described to me is is very sensible, is the classic Internet of expensive things. Hey, you've asked Mozilla, you've got hundreds of these expensive, infusion pumps. Maybe you could have 25% less and have more efficient use of them less trying to find them. But what about, you know, the consumable things? The the leg braces, the knee braces, the medicine, the packs of bandages? Is? Is that a real opportunity? Or am I just eating my own dog food to use an American expression of believing my own? Kind of the things I want to believe rather than the real problems are out there?
Gery Pollet 14:14
No, I think that are the biggest opportunities. The reason we focused initially on let's say, the more expensive equipment is because the cost of the tech was quite high. We are at a time when we started deploying them. They were costing 10 euros apiece. If you put a tag of 10 euros on a bet of let's say, 5000 euros, nobody will bother about it. But if you put a tag of 10 euros on a medicine or a consumable of 50 euros, nobody's going to buy that. Yeah. Yeah. What you what what you see clearly happening right now is that these costs are decreasing stepchange essentially, and I think, like, just take a look at what what Little Village was doing in that space. So it becomes much more attractive to start putting Bluetooth tags or stickers on all kinds of equipments. So, yes,
Steve Statler 15:16
Okay, well, maybe this is a good segue to your own foray into these lower cost devices. I was really intrigued when I saw you had a new tag product. Is it like a printed battery tag? Or can you tell us a bit about it?
Gery Pollet 15:35
Yeah, let me maybe talk a bit about our strategy. What we discovered very early on in the in the whole Bluetooth saga is that in order to deliver a solution, you have to bring in an N A to Zed solution, you have the whole the whole ecosystem, which is not easy, especially if you're looking for venture capital, because most VCs, they don't like hardware. That's why they say hardware is hard. The reason I'm saying that is that we started with one tech that we thought was, which fits all sizes, also all problems. But unfortunately, that was not the case. So I think over the last years, we probably developed or CO developed, maybe 10 different types of tacks. Depending on the use case, I will show you three examples. And this is one this is this was at the time the first heat resistant tech in the world. It's already surviving up to 150 degrees. And you will ask me, why is that needed? Well, a lot of equipment in hospitals are being sterilized.
Steve Statler 16:53
So this is 150 degrees centigrade.
Gery Pollet 16:56
Yeah. Wow. That is we can really, you can really boil it, which is very cool. At a certain moment, hospitals were caving to us on the SME. Okay, but we have very small equipment like ear terminators, we have a solution for that. So then we developed, we are still proud of that World's Smallest tech, which is the size of a SIM cards. Yeah. Oh, yeah. has a limited lifetime. And the funny thing is the battery that's being used, there is the same battery that's in an ear. hearing device. Yeah. Yeah. So that's a very small talk. In other words, a certain moment. Yeah, they were coming to us, can you help us with a tech for tracking tablets and laptops, and also more expensive medical devices like stents, etc. And therefore, we developed these battery powered stickers. Very nice. And we are yet so let me just open it. So it has a flexible electronics there. So the top you see, in fact, the whole Bluetooth, yeah, Bluetooth antenna. And the rest is, is a paper battery. And it should last three to five years. So we still have to test it.
Steve Statler 18:20
Amazing. And what sort of duty cycle how often is it broadcasting if you're gonna get to that three to five.
Gery Pollet 18:28
So what I always say to clients is what is the use case and then try to find the ideal advertising frequency, like for if you want to find a bump or something like that, you want to know where it is right now. So with the standard tax, we normally advertise every five to 10 seconds is maybe also overkill with the very tiny tech that I showed you. If it was a battery lifetime. We had to decrease the appetising frequency to every three minutes. Yeah. And this gives us a battery lifetime of about three years. With the with the sticker tech that we are broadcasting every one minutes and it should last up to we think three to five years minimum three, maybe five
Steve Statler 19:19
And what kind of ballpark price are you talking about for something for football for all of them? It's kind of interesting.
Gery Pollet 19:27
Yeah. The thing is, we You don't sell tags to you you sell I should have been I should have paid attention the first time in June. That's what the list price of attack let's say if you want to buy one, just one and we don't talk about any volume discounts etc. Right a lot was ticket back and the tiny tech as we call it, it's around 7.5 euros. But we are not talking to clients. Less But the price is very important. And we think we can bring it down to 1.5 euros. And the goal is really to bring it down in the coming years to less than a euro. Yeah, I think that's that's going to be the sweet spots if you really want to must enter must serve all your
Steve Statler 20:22
I agree, I agree for a printed battery tag that that really gets people's attention and will open up the use cases. Well, it's funny people. I think sometimes people are a bit puzzled, they know that I have a day job I work for affiliates, and Wiliot is in the battery free Bluetooth business. So why are you doing a podcast where you are helping people promote RFID and other Bluetooth tags and ultra wideband, but you know, I really, you know, my belief is that we're all working on building a category, that it's really not about market share, it's about building momentum. And there's, I also feel very kind of confident in the niche that we're in. But, you know, I believe that you have to have the right tool for the right job. And it's companies like yours, that brain, you don't just arrive with a hammer, you have a tool chest, and you're pulling all these things together and using the right tool for the right thing and building out complete solutions. That's not what my employer does they, it's a platform, and we kind of are very focused on this, like, you know, sub 10 cents category. And you don't that tag is amazing. But it's not going to do everything, it's not going to do all the things that that you've described. So I think it's really important that we have this. And actually, I know I'm starting to talk about me. So I'll try and keep it short. But we've actually decided to build a database to resurrect a database that later on in this conversation, you're going to bring up the subject to the book that brought us together, I wrote the book on Beacon technologies, you read it, and then we started dining and collaborating together. But when that beacon technologies book was written, I was conscious it was going to be out of date immediately. So I'm like, Well, what can we do to future proof it and so I started with a really clunky database. And then I was advised I was the advisor for another company and they took it on and scaled it and then they kind of lost interest in it. So we've decided that we really ought to resurrect this the Mr. Beacon directory of, of Bluetooth beacon technologies, Ambien IoT technologies and, and the instead of expensive things, Bluetooth technology. So hopefully, in the next, by the end of the year, you'll be able to come to the basics part of our website and just do a search and find battery powered devices, all sorts of things. So I'm hoping that you're going to do the do me a favor and fill in the details of all of your products so that when people come to search, they'll they'll find it. And again, it's it's about building the category and sharing the information. So that's coming soon to a website near you. Let's so let's get back to your your business, Jerry and your what what are the things that you think we need to do to scale the healthcare applications? Because it seems to me like you're doing all the right things? What are the challenges? Is it that, you know, things are made on a hospital by hospital hospital basis? Are you are you seeing real scale across networks of hospitals? Or what are the biggest challenges and and what do you think needs to happen to to have this market really scale?
Gery Pollet 24:21
First of all, dealing with hospitals, that's that's not an easy and easy job because they have very long left from contract to contract. sales cycles, it can easily take 12 to 18 months. This being sets we also had hospitals where we close the deal in less than a week. Yeah. But I think it's it's our duty and when I'd say our duty, it's not only my but it's the duty of the community to really educate the markets, much more about the savings that can be made. Because too often they think it's only a gimmick We have done several airway studies, we actually did a study last week with a hospital, where these were their figures, where it was being shown internally, that after two years of using our solution, their savings were over 500k. After deducting or, or costs are the net, the net profit being made. So I think that's something that the community really has to focus on to show guys, you know, real savings to be made here. It's not blah, blah, blah. So that's the first challenge. The second thing is that when I look at the vendors, that has to conform or interrupt operability, I mean, Bluetooth is a standards, it's amazing that some of the major vendors, they still think that iBeacon and Eddystone are the right tools or technologies for IoT. You know, these were developed for something completely else for, for advertising purposes, totally not suited for IoT purposes. But then you have these major vendors, they only support that in the access point and not standard Bluetooth technology. And for me, that's something guys, please follow what the market is asking. So that's also something that needs to happen. And again, something that we as a community have really to push towards these vendors to convince them that they should start supporting this standard Bluetooth technology.
Steve Statler 26:31
So I'm a bit confused. So you're saying standardize on Bluetooth, but don't the it's not about iBeacon, which was all about kind of location, not asset tracking. And, and you're saying Eddystone? isn't the answer either what is the so yes, Bluetooth, I get that what else? It should? Be? Can manufacturers be be doing to make life easier?
Gery Pollet 27:04
Right, you have large manufacturers, I'm not going to name to name. Put names forward here, because that's not so important. It lets air access points only support standard iBeacon and Eddystone. format. Oh, I see. Okay. Okay, if you then put a tack on an asset, which broadcasts iBeacon you can perfectly follow it throughout the hospital. Yeah, that has other sensory information. Forget it. Yeah. Yeah. And maybe you can solve it by using the minor and the major. But I, these protocols are never, never used for these kinds of things. We have something like guys that is there is a Bluetooth standard that where you have the the advertising part of the message that you can encrypt where you can put a lot of sensor data and police start supporting that.
Steve Statler 27:58
Yeah, so basically a bit more flexibility and openness, because the reality is very few. So everyone supports iBeacon. But very few people have just iBeacon they have iBeacon as part of a cocktail of data that's sent by their tags or their beacons. They have more sensing information. iBeacons not encrypted. So they probably want some encryption. And so you just need a bit more flexibility. And so sounds like your ask is for the infrastructure owners. And I think it's in their interest to do that to just be a bit more flexible about the format's that they're enabled through because they they have a lot to gain by managing all these, these devices. That's good. That's good feedback. I'm wondering if maybe there's some work that the Bluetooth SIG could do to help that because, you know, the Bluetooth standard as it is kind of very simple in terms of what it specifies. But maybe there's some a bit more detail that can be added to to embrace more, more modern requirements or or maybe it's not that maybe it's just the infrastructure folks need to be more more flexible.
Gery Pollet 29:21
I think the infrastructures folks should follow it, but the market is asking. Yeah, and then the third, the third challenge is that we are talking to a lot of pharmaceutical companies and medical device companies etc. And you know, the consignment challenges. They only can start invoicing a hospital the moment that a good has has been consumed. Also that there is some standardization needed because as an example, and I'm just giving some names out of the blue, suppose tomorrow I do a deal with with Pfizer and what Your solution across several hospitals to track consignment and venturi. And then you have another company like Boston Scientific, and they say, No, we want to have another solution. This is never going to work. So we need a kind of a trusted party in the middle there. So that every hospital has, has, has a platform in place that everybody can use, and that they don't have to be afraid that the data is going to be shared with with their competitors. Yes, but we are not, we are not going to solve that. I think there has to be a kind of a DNS agency or whatever, you may call it a central orchestration platform that that takes care of these kinds of things. And maybe that's also something that needs to come from the vendors that say, okay, you know, we are going to, to build this interoperability. So that tomorrow if Pfizer wants to work with with us, and Medtronic with another one that the same infrastructure can be used.
Steve Statler 31:01
Yeah, that's really interesting. And yeah, I was gonna ask you, because we started this conversation about downstream applications, you know, the, the, the end consumer or most of the devices, but I think you see the real scale upstream at that the companies that make the pharmaceuticals, the supplies, the auto injectors, all of those things, that's where you get into the billions of things. But, you know, what we've seen is, it's challenging for them. Because the, they're looking at a very fragmented set of different hospitals using different technologies. And so that fragmentation is holding up, joining it all lap. I'm not sure whether that's something that you see, seems like it probably is
Gery Pollet 31:56
spoiled the other day to a company, they are shipping over 100 million packages a year to two hospitals. And they car if there was a kind of a standard, we would immediately put on everything, we shipped a Bluetooth sticker. It can be brilliant, whatever, it doesn't matter it. But they say no, we have to find solutions. That's if this company on this hospital supports, it's okay, then all with that company, we're going to send packages that has stickers. So something needs to happen there. Yes. And this will happen if the big boys sit together and say, Okay, let's let's, let's create a standard for interoperability that everybody can adapt. And that's going to be then then I think we are going to enter mass. Mass volumes.
Steve Statler 32:50
Yeah, I'm optimistic about that I, you know, we're starting to see really significant volumes. And you know, this, the kind of thing that you're describing, only happens when the business is big enough to warrant the Giants actually taking the time out to do it. And based on what we're seeing on our pipeline, then we're starting to get to, to that scale. So I don't think it's going to happen overnight. But I believe the next three years will be really interesting. We'll start scaling to billions of Bluetooth tags, 10s, maybe even hundreds of billions of Bluetooth tags. And at that point, then I think it will just be self interest to start to build out more of the interoperability that you're describing. You you touched on the consignment use case, and I didn't do my interviewers job, I should have stopped you and asked you to explain that, because I think it's actually a really powerful one. But can you explain what the consignment use case is? Because I think it's one that can scale. And it's one that I think we want people to focus on, because there's a really good ROI. But what is it?
Gery Pollet 34:10
It's a fantastic use case, and I was really amazed when we are we are doing one together with a very large pharmaceutical or medical device company. I'm not allowed to mention names. But I was really amazed when I when they gave me the figures about the loss they were making per year. So in a nutshell, what's consignment? Suppose you're, you're a supplier of, let's say pacemakers, just to give an example. Yeah. But it can also be more other products that are more mass mass volume products. But let's take as an example, the pacemaker see, as the manufacturer put it in, in the hospital, and it's the inventory. It can only be invoiced by the bed infection. At the moment the hospital has consumed the device so that it has been used as an implant for a patient. And that's where the problem starts. Because hospitals forget to reports. Sometimes it take all the equipment that's already expired or sorry, they take the newer equipment instead of the older equipment that's soon going to be expired. Then the sales representatives of the Spacemaker company, they have to visit every hospital now and then to check the invent adventury to see if everything has been invoiced correctly. If they need to read resupply the stock, etc. You will ask of course, but Jerry with all the modern modern tools like SAP and name it, this is all fully automated. Believe it or not, some hospitals are still faxing. I have one of my my son's is working at Blier T, he never saw effects. Just amazing. So when by by putting, for instance, let's say you have an area of storage area in a hospital, where you have all these pacemakers by putting a brutal attack on it, you can know exactly what's what's there, the moment the packet is being opened, you can send another notification message that the good is being consumed. And the moment is no longer visible, because it's no longer pinging. Then you can send a notification, okay, now we can invoice the item. And it gives these big manufacturers real time visibility, about what's everywhere. And it also reduces waste. Because then they know they can say to the hospital to a wait a moment, you're consuming a product and your products. But you have another product on the shelf that seemed to be expired. Please take take that one first. And we are we are doing a test with one big medical device company as I as I just said they are losing 10s of millions of euros only in Europe only for a very specific products. And we are not going to build a 100% ls solution that I will solve the problem completely. But I think that probably 80 to 90% of these costs can be avoided by by implementing these kinds of routes, consignment stock technology.
Steve Statler 37:36
I agree, I think it's an amazing use case. And there's so much ROI there. It's, you know, faster invoicing. So you can really, if you're a CFO, you can look at getting that real time trigger of consumption, you can do all sorts of financial engineering around that, whether you're, especially if you're a wholesaler, or an OEM manufacturer of equipment. And I think you reduce shrink. And as you say, you can make sure there's FIFO, and you get the kind of analytics that demand signals. So you can pre kit the replenishment, so less visits from with smaller vehicles with smaller amounts of inventory to do the replenishment. So I think you've really hit that particular nail on the head. And it's a great one to focus on.
Gery Pollet 38:28
I have to tell you a funny story. So when I was looking at the figures, there was also a line there, which was last Trumpkin venturi. So and I was asking what's what's this meaning last trunk? Eventually, that's really inventory in the trunk of the sales reps. That they don't know when this when it's when it's lost? Yeah. So they have they have zero visibility, the moment that leaves there, this trip distribution centers, they have zero visibility about what's happening.
Steve Statler 39:01
Well, that visibility in vehicles, I think is a really hot use case we're seeing it with and I didn't expect it to happen so quickly, but putting Bluetooth readers in refrigerated containers, delivery vehicles, and seeing what goes in did it go into the right vehicle? Is it being kept at the right temperature if it's temperature sensitive? And when did it leave that and just looking at the utilization is the vehicle full? Is it empty? Those are all things we did a demonstration. At grocery shop, we add an Uber driver and we use the Uber drivers phone and we put half a dozen tags in their vehicle and we add a little GoPro camera and they were driving around Las Vegas and so you can see the heat map in the car. It was amazing. The difference in temperature from the front of the car to the back of the car. And there's just something about seeing this vehicle moving around and knowing what was in it. I think it's, you know, in a few years time people were like, I can't believe we were doing this blindfolded with the we were running this supply chain with the lights out. And so I think that's a use case that will be powerful for for lots of different vendors with lots of different technologies, but tracking things in transit. It used to be about where is the delivery vehicle, you know, we don't know where our delivery vehicles are. That was like step one. Now, it's about what's in the delivery vehicle. And to back to consignment, what's in the case that's used to the cupboard or the case, the filing cabinet, and it's used for that consignment process. Very good. So Jerry, it's been great to get this update. Is there anything else that you want to cover before we sign off? But I think we've touched on some really good use cases got an update on your new beacon products. Any last words?
Gery Pollet 41:02
Yeah. Question for you. What do you think about hebbal? Networks?
Steve Statler 41:06
I have not heard of them? No, I'm ignorant on it. What's that? Tell us about them?
Gery Pollet 41:10
It's US company. They just raised $20 million. And they claim to have soon, Bluetooth satellites that can receive Bluetooth signals into space. I n space. Oh, my goodness. Maybe it's an ID to invite them also on your on your podcast.
Steve Statler 41:32
I'm going to check it out. It sounds amazing. I can't imagine how it works. But I'm sure they'd love to tell us. So I appreciate the appreciate it. And yeah, if anyone knows of anyone that we should get on the podcast, then I'm really open to ideas, but it's a great suggestion. So Jerry, obviously, you've been on the podcast before you chose your three songs people can go back to I think it was like February 2022 to see what they are. So I was you know, one of my favorite movies is in Bruges, and you went to college in Bruges. I don't think you were in the movie. But what what was that? Like? What was your what were your college days? Like? There was a great place to study. Did you study?
Gery Pollet 42:19
Yeah, I tried to study. Yeah, it was a great place to study because it's fantastic city. The only problem is you have a lot of worse. So after school, sometimes instead of going to the study room, we entered with a couple of friends and bourse to hunt for the pretty ladies. And at a certain moment I met my wife, so Oh, wonderful. I met her when we were 18. And we were still together. So it was a good hunting season in brooch.
Steve Statler 42:48
I can't think of a more beautiful place to to find your feet. So what did you study in college?
Gery Pollet 42:59
Actually, I did first Latin that in Greece. So don't ask me any Latin words, because it's too too long ago. But it's a good basis to learn another language then to think a bit logical as I would say, yeah. And afterwards, I did industrial engineering. At least I started because then something happened, which was called the Internet. And I started one of the first internet providers in Belgium. My parents ended up because they were asking when are you now doing the ad instead of continuing your studies? You're crazy. But probably it was one of the best decisions I made. So I was I was a school dropouts,
Steve Statler 43:46
the interesting. So did you finish your college or between your meeting your wife and starting the internet startup? Then you joined that legion of Steve Jobs? Bill Gates, all those other
Gery Pollet 43:58
Yeah, I was 2222 when I started my first company. It was really the early days of internet. So to give you an idea, we had the first internet line to make yeast which was then one of the the horse of the internet based in the US. We had 164 Kaline, which came via Finland via telecom Finland's event. We had our analog modems where people had to dial in. It's amazing how all this changed
Steve Statler 44:31
error. I remember well, yeah, it's hard to imagine a world without the Internet. And it's hard to imagine stepping into that world via a squeaky line that was so slow and tech space browsers and all that sort of thing. So when did you know that you were going to be a serial entrepreneur was was was that the moment or were you? Firstly I was selling Cadbury's Creme Eggs to my class. Smith's when I was in early high school, I think that was the the tell for me. But what about you? When did you know you were going to be an entrepreneur?
Gery Pollet 45:09
Poor? I think it was purely by accident, you saw an opportunity, you thought you had the solution to the problem. And you'd like to build a solution. So that's how you start a business. And after a while, you get bored, because yeah, it's working. That is the challenge. And then you are looking for something new. Then the next thing I think I did was there was something coming like force calling via the Internet. It. So we built on a company that did all the first internet telephony applications, but also their ones it was working. For me, the film was gone. So up to the next company or startup,
Steve Statler 45:53
so you you like spotting trends and creating new things? It seems that's, that's your modus operandi.
Gery Pollet 46:02
Yes. One of the companies I started, the name actually was new ticks.
Steve Statler 46:09
All right. Very good. Well, you've been, you've been one of the early pioneers in ambient IoT. So hopefully, we can harness that. That approach and that success to build this category that we will work in. Very good, Jerry. Well, thanks very much for being on the podcast for a second time. It's been, it's been great to have you here.
Gery Pollet 46:35
Very happy to be back here. Steve, always a pleasure to talk to you. And as probably you remember very well, but I entered this space after I read one of your books.
Steve Statler 46:47
I had actually forgotten that. So there's a few people that read actually a decent number of people that read the beacon technologies Hitchhiker's Guide to the beaker system, but that always warms my heart. And it's the most sincere compliment that anyone can, can give. We all like to be listened to. And the only thing better than that is being read. So thanks, Jerry, I really appreciate it. So that was my conversation with with Jerry is a great guy to work with a great guy to have a meal with as well. And I think there's a lot to learn there. I want to thank you for sticking with us through to the end of the conversation that makes you special in my book. We live in a world where everyone's like, just snacking on things and listening for a few seconds. So you have an attention span. Or maybe you just fell asleep and you woke up at the end. But either way, we're glad that you are with us. I invite you to join us again next week. I'm hoping to have a guest from IBM on. We're doing some really amazing stuff in the Internet of Things and the IoT world, as well as my thanks to you. I want to thank Brooke Ellsworth, who does the social media and helps me with some of the production. And then Aaron hammock, who does all of the the editing and writes the show notes and so forth. So until next time, stay safe and be happy. And our hearts go out to everybody that's wrapped up in this conflict in Israel. It's heartbreaking. And we wish everybody everybody well. Thank you.