We talked to Jean Baptiste Clouard, CEO at Flowlity, about simplified supply chains and this is what he said about it.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Jean Baptiste Clouard: We are great. We were lucky enough to stay healthy and safe during these unusual times.
Tell us about you, your career, and how you founded Flowlity.
Jean Baptiste Clouard: I graduated from an engineering school and then worked for Dassault Systèmes and Anaplan on major supply chain deployment projects, product management, and pre-sales activities. Along the way, I realized that what I really wanted to do was creating my own company. I have always been enthusiastic about the supply chain and I wanted to bring my knowledge in software to deeply impact this field.
I joined Entrepreneur First and that’s where I met Karim, my co-founder. Karim has a really techy and data-oriented background and we really complement each other. Flowlity was born from this meeting: the perfect combination between supply chain knowledge and AI.
How does Flowlity innovate?
Jean Baptiste Clouard: Poor inventory management accounts for billions in losses, overstocks, and product shortages. On the other hand, 85% of companies struggled with inefficient digital technologies. Flowlity was born from this simple observation. Easily implemented via a SaaS architecture, Flowlity goes further by requiring no configuration from users. The tool directly provides forecasts, visualizations, and actionable recommendations.
Using AI, we connect companies in a network to optimize their inventories to limit cost and avoid shortage. We act as a trusted third party between the different stakeholders of the supply chain.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business and how are you coping?
Jean Baptiste Clouard: It was hard at first. We are still young and the crisis really slows down our activities. But after the first lockdown, companies started reaching out to us as their forecast methods reached their limits. The pandemic increases our sales cycle velocity and pipeline as our value looks clearer than ever.
Did you have to make difficult choices and what are the lessons learned?
Jean Baptiste Clouard: We learned a lot. We learned how to remain a team and stayed focused while working from home. And we made a big shift. We went from a remote-friendly company to a remote-first company. No matter where you live you can work at Flowlity. We trust our collaborators and are confident enough in our culture to allow our team members to work wherever they want.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Jean Baptiste Clouard: We are a small team with a strong agile culture. Our daily stand-up meetings really help us to stay focused and aligned. More than ever, we foster communication and transparency to navigate this crisis.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Jean Baptiste Clouard: We have many competitors from on-premise traditional big players to small startups like us. Flowlity’s ambition is to be the first planning software built as a network. Our DNA and the technology that supports it are truly unique. We plan on going even further! Great features and product updates will come this year so stay tuned!
Your final thoughts?
Jean Baptiste Clouard: Well, first thanks for this interview and opportunity. I know that we now are living key moments. The world won’t ever be the same and we are facing challenges that we never faced before. I’m happy to be able to play my part and help companies build more efficient and resilient supply chains.
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