Blaine: Hi I’m Blaine Mathieu here in Tokyo, Japan with Marty Sprinzen – CEO and co-founder of VANTIQ. Marty has just returned from the SoftBank World event which featured the strategic partnership with, and investment from SoftBank Corp. Marty, why is SoftBank partnering with and investing in VANTIQ?
Marty: From what they have told us they have major initiatives in IoT and AI and they want to move the technology ahead, plus create special offerings, and they see us as a partner that will enable them to accomplish this.
Blaine: Great. What are the components of the deal?
Marty: Basically three components. Most people talk about the investment first, that is maybe the most obvious component of it. But I would argue that the other two aspects of it are even more important. The second aspect of it is SoftBank and VANTIQ will be jointly enhancing and developing their technologies, combining them for a fuller offering in the market. So it’s our application development and deployment capabilities with SoftBank’s IoT stacks and AI components and the combination they believe and we believe will be unique in the market. The third aspect of it is a reseller agreement. SoftBank will be reselling VANTIQ to their customers as well as partners who will build software applications that SoftBank can then market. And the strength of this is that SoftBank has three thousand salespeople who can sell these products.
Blaine: And how will VANTIQ benefit from this relationship?
Marty: The biggest benefit to VANTIQ is probably one of credibility. Being in a relatively early stage software company getting the credibility of having SoftBank, and I couldn’t think of a better company to have this relationship with, invest in us build technology with us and then resell the technology; gives us incredible credibility in the market. And we’ve already seen in just the last few days some positive results of that.
Blaine: Describe the type of projects that VANTIQ will initially be working with SoftBank on.
Marty: The early projects and the first one that we already worked on with them is ‘smart building’ and in fact they’re moving their headquarters from one location in Tokyo to another and we and they are building applications for security, for safety, for people movement, for advertising, asset allocation and so on. And those applications – although they’re built for their smart city/smart building – they can be resold into the market for many other smart buildings worldwide.
Blaine: Very cool. What excites you most about this partnership?
Marty: Well as I pointed out the credibility. But beyond that the relationship between the two companies. We have spent many months working closely with their engineering department and thinking through how the companies can work together and in quite a bit of detail. And I think we have some very exciting things to develop and to introduce to the market over the next few years, really.
Blaine: Thanks so much Marty. Exciting times for VANTIQ.
Marty: Thank you.