Slava Bystrytskyi, co-founder of Marevo tells us how AR provides much greater opportunities for businesses than ever before.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Slava Bystrytskyi: Like most companies, we turned to remote work on the first days of the lockdown. Thanks to the specifics of our business, it wasn’t a problem. Most clients also worked remotely, so the situation didn’t have a big impact on communications.
Unfortunately, it didn’t help to save a team from the virus. We had a few infected guys. Me too. Happily, we are already okay.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Marevo.
Slava Bystrytskyi: There is no cute story behind starting the Marevo company. Mainly, our co-founders’ experience had been based on different AR fun solutions before it was decided to run our own company. We already had met a few cases of AR for business, so we saw great potential in such use.
‘Tools, not toys’ – this is our motto from the beginning.
How does Marevo innovate?
Slava Bystrytskyi: Marevo declines to create games and entertainment apps. We focus on AR mobile applications for small and medium businesses from certain domains. Mainly, that’s for construction/renovation areas.
First, it allows us to develop only skills that are in demand by real tasks.
Moreover, it’s felt like we also take on an educational role as we show the possibilities of augmented reality before start collaboration. It helps companies to become more effective, innovative, modern.
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Slava Bystrytskyi: At the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, most businesses had to reduce marketing budgets. Obviously, it impacted our finances. However, we managed to save a team and their salaries.
When the world situation became clearer, it’s appeared that AR looks like a great way to communicate/sell remotely. It didn’t boost our sales, though. People were no longer scared but waited to see what would happen next. Interest in our solutions started increasing significantly this year only.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources, and what are the lessons learned?
Slava Bystrytskyi: We are an equipment-depended company. So the main challenge was to ensure the operation of the team at their homes. No other difficult choices, luckily.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Slava Bystrytskyi: I wouldn’t say something was changed dramatically for B2B. Fortunately for us, companies, those open for innovative tools for business, are also open for any technologies.
Probably, we started using video-call more often. However, I would say that just a step of evolution in people communication. The pandemic just speeded up that.
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
Slava Bystrytskyi: No, nothing. Our country isn’t too rich, unfortunately. We knew a lot of Ukrainians required that more than our company. So, we didn’t look for anything similar.
Your final thoughts?
Slava Bystrytskyi: It’s a trivial thought, but the world was changed obviously. Humanity is paying a huge price, and we must learn lessons from that. We should get stronger, smarter, and more adapted. I hope our company manages to make its contribution as well.
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