BLOCK71 Singapore Entrepreneur Feature — Savioke
In this week’s Entrepreneur Feature, we speak to Akash and Matthew of Savioke, the developers of Relay, an indoor delivery robot dedicated to serving people across the world.
- What is Relay’s secret sauce?
There are more and more robots in the public spaces. The secret sauce behind Relay is that he’s so cute and safe around people, and he’s super intuitive and simple to interact with. He navigates in public spaces really well. Everyone loves him! Hotels and other businesses are really enjoying working and playing with Relay.
2. What are some things you want people to know?
Relay is an intentionally designed robot. Our team always kept safety, user experience and the environment in mind. At the end of the day, the interaction with Relay also has to be simple and fun so we really take all of that to heart in everything we develop for Relay For example, we even put rubber bumpers on the bottom just in case something unexpected happens! So, I think it’s super important as a product company that you make the interface and human experience as perfect as possible.
3. What was Savioke’s greatest challenge?
I think the greatest challenge for us is the worry of the unknown from the customer’s perspective because robots in public spaces are so new. Though technical challenges can be really tough, we have a great team and we are able to find solutions to just about everything we need for safe and smooth operation. Customers and owners are unsure of the risks to adopt a new technology and how to fit it into their business proceses. Even here in Singapore, we are very lucky to have grants to reduce some of the financial risk, it’s still a bit of an uphill battle that we have to fight to convince the customer “look at this new tool you can use in your hotel or property to make life better for your team and your guests”.
4. How did you overcome those problems?
It’s a combination of patience, education and demonstration. We take them to properties that have Relay installed or we do demo here at BLOCK71 and show them the case studies we have. We work to help them overcome those fears just like anything else. Just face it and find a way to push through it.
5. What is your best memory at BLOCK71?
The best memory of BLOCK71 — we have a lot of good memories on community events. I think the best memory for me is when we had sharing sessions. The nice thing about BLOCK71 is we are a community of start-ups so everybody can share their learnings on growth and sometimes failures but ultimately we can all learn from each other.
I feel the Kopi Chats are really awesome also, the panelists that come in really help. You learn more about what’s happening in the start-up world, the fundraising side, international growth and more. BLOCK71 is such a nice place with so many companies around you; you never feel lonely, even as a start-up.
6. What’s next for Savioke?
From a growth standpoint, Singapore is going really well. We are now moving into Thailand as we speak and next we’re moving into Australia as it’s a really good market for us. On features and software, we are working on some next-gen software like RelayNow which is an application that works like Uber to queue up your deliveries and get a schedule on where the robot is and the ETA. It really helps for properties with multiple robots. And for hardware features, we are working on a new insert to help handle items like coffee deliveries really well.
Watch the full video interview with Akash and Matthew from Savioke here:
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