We talked to Morten Poulsen, Founder, and CEO at Plytix about a product information management platform that just works and here is what he said about it.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Plytix.
Morten Poulsen: I started my career at Google, and after three years of working predominantly in the analytics and programmatic buying division, I realized there must be a better way to track product performance. In 2015, I founded Plytix in Denmark as an eCommerce analytics tool, and have since pivoted it into the Product Information Management (PIM) tool that it is today. While my days at Google were great, I wanted to build the biggest eCommerce tool in the world, one that would track product performance across third-party resellers. And that’s where we’re headed.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Morten Poulsen: In the past year, we have seen a massive influx in online retail. It seems that now with everyone working from home and being scared of the coronavirus pandemic, people want to buy and sell more products online. This is good news for us as we (Plytix) are driving next-generation software that is the cornerstone of multichannel commerce, enabling those people to sell online.
We’re also seeing that the digitalization that we thought would only happen in the next four to five years is happening now. So, while it is super sad to see many businesses not doing so well during this time, it is, however, a great time for Plytix. We have increased our organization by more than 35%, and we had a record year in 2020. It has been good timing for us, and we look forward to what 2021 can bring.
As far as challenges go, the only thing that we’re finding tricky is investments. It seems that investors are not as willing to invest these days as they have been before. And I think the main reason is that investors are investing across multiple segments and industries. They probably have a handful of startups on their portfolios, ones that aren’t doing so well at the moment, and so, they need to sit on their money and their fund’s money to help struggling companies. Overall, it is clear that there is less opportunity as fewer investments are being made.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Morten Poulsen: Fortunately, we didn’t. We didn’t have to fire anyone or restructure our internal teams. The good news is that work has been business as usual, only more of it!
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Morten Poulsen: During this crisis, we’re using our customer success metric, Point of Minimum Churn (PMC), to accurately forecast churn and expansion throughout the organization. It is a scoring method that is particularly for customer acquisition, allowing us to identify value-adding opportunities for our customers.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Morten Poulsen: At the moment, the PIM industry is seeing a compounded annual growth of 25% year-on-year. I think it is closer to 30% now. Still, the adoption for PIM across retail is less than 10%, and that is because PIM software (although it has been around for a decade) is typically designed for large companies with a specific need and to have a central source of truth for 20 000+ of their employees working across the globe. But now, as retail is advancing, a single source of truth is not only for enterprise clients, it is also relevant for small-to-medium-sized businesses.
Where Plytix comes in is that we are more of a disrupting force that is offering a cost, user, and customer support-friendly alternative to the existing enterprise-focused PIMs. So, if you ask me, who our biggest competitors are, I would say spreadsheets. More than 90% of our customers come from non-consumption and are adopting a PIM for the first time. And we seem to be occupying that space really well globally.
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