Sramana Mitra: Let’s say in the 10-year horizon we are seeing really significant adoption of still people-driven but a lot of data-driven behavior and optimization. It would be probably reasonable to say that in another 20 to 30 years, the people component will become less and less and everything becomes fully automated.
Joe Shamir: Certain processes will be fully automated. I have no doubt about it.
Sramana Mitra: Are you familiar with the work that Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfson are doing at MIT on the decoupling of productivity and job growth?
Joe Shamir: No, I’m not. I’ll be really interested if you will be so kind to send me the reference.
Sramana Mitra: There’s been a lot written about what’s happening in this massive technology-driven automation whether it’s through the big data related innovation or robotics. All these are basically making the role of labor less and less. The percentage of labor needed to run a company is becoming lower and lower. What does that do to society? Population is increasing and the employability or the next jobs available is decreasing. How does civilization deal with that trend? It’s an interesting question. I’m not saying that we should discuss that right now because there’s nothing to discuss.
Joe Shamir: I’m not the right person, I’m afraid.
Sramana Mitra: The discussion that we just had speaks to this trend. It’s a very good example of what’s happening. Before we finish, I’d like to know a little bit about your company. Where are you based? Is this a bootstrapped or venture funded company? What level are you at? How long have you been around? Just give us a little bit about the entrepreneurial journey behind the company.
Joe Shamir: We are a European company. It’s fully bootstrapped. With our expertise, we were able to finance the company and the development of the product. We were resilient enough to live through the 2,000 problems. Then, came the bubble where nobody needed any supply chain. We believe now that the technology that we developed 15 years ago is finally needed by the market and is appreciated.
Sramana Mitra: Where are you headquartered?
Joe Shamir: We are headquartered in the Netherlands and we have an office across the river in front of MIT. We actually collaborate a lot with MIT.
Sramana Mitra: How big is the company now?
Joe Shamir: We are about 85 people.
Sramana Mitra: Revenue level?
Joe Shamir: We are north of 11 million euros.
Sramana Mitra: Excellent. At this point, you’ve become very contemporary. What you’re doing is a very contemporary solution to a very contemporary problem.
Joe Shamir: We are pulled in that direction by some early adopters. That is very encouraging because there is an evolution in the market that is creating a requirement for that. That is a positive thing.
Sramana Mitra: Thank you. It was a great conversation.