Tuesday, 10 February 2015

GoLoc8: Entrepreneurial Marketing Guest Speaker - Wayne Soutter

Friday saw the Royal Holloway MSc Entrepreneurship students receive an inspiring presentation from serial entrepreneur Wayne Soutter and his current technology start up GoLoc8.

Using a polished business pitch students were introduced to the new business concept, a GSM mobile tracker device for high value packages.  The inspiration for this innovation, that is made possible by significant price reductions in the base circuit board technology, came during a family trip to a London museum which revealed an unconscious need for a child tracker product.

Wayne Soutter Entrepreneurial head of GoLoc8

Eagle eyed MSc Entrepreneurship students

Having assessed the competitive marketplace for children and pets, Wayne and the team at GoLoc8 (an ingenious protectable variant of the functional benefit 'Go-Locate') settled on packages where there was a need for precise and reliable tracking not currently afforded by courier gateway controls that might only offer 0.5km accuracy.  (Lost in Heathrow cargo area - "I'm sure it's somewhere in here ?"  Harnessing low energy blue tooth tech customers will be able to receive exception reporting for temperature variations (e.g. dry ice stored human organs), light exposure and drop shocks (e.g. high value computer servers).  

I have a question: How does this work in the real world ?

GoLoc8 tracker production design
The masters students were given four real questions the business had faced to consider in their discussion groups and Wayne revealed the decision tree process GoLoc8 had gone through thus far.  The product is just about to go into a 500 unit proof of concept production run, ahead of a major venture capital investment that will enable a full scale launch.  

Two key learning points were emphasised by  entrepreneurial marketing lecturer Justin O'Brien following this lively and highly interactive session; 

(1) The importance of serendipitous networking.  Wayne had developed the concept having struck up a conversation with a senior sales person from a leading courier service, on a plane back from Ireland.  

(2) Speed-to-market as an important competitive advantage.  Having investigated opportunities to patent the new tracker product GoLoc8 concluded that customer intimacy and benefit innovation were likely to be their critical success factors, although two design patents are likely to be taken out.