Tars Geerts and Mlytics’ team rides the wave of digitization to disrupt the cloud industry
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Tars Geerts: I have family members on 2 sides of the globe: Belgium and Taiwan. My family in Belgium is doing fine, even though Europe is seeing a huge spike in terms of COVID-19 cases, I hope everything will be eased a bit by Christmas. My Taiwan-based family is well too, Taiwan has successfully ‘beaten’ COVID-19 since day one, so over here everything feels like the “old” normal.
Tell us about you, your career, how you joined Mlytics.
Tars Geerts: I am a young Belgian ex-pat, happily living and working in Taipei, Taiwan. Professionally, I am passionate about helping start-ups and scale-ups grow going from zero to hero, taking businesses to the next level. In my free time, I like to spend as much time as possible surfing or diving. And it was the combo of my passions that drew me to Taiwan, as it has a very vibrant start-up scene, scores pretty well in terms of living standards for ex-pats, and there is easy access to beaches and other outdoors.
At the time of the COVID-19 pandemic hit, I was working for an innovative scuba diving company and we got hit quite badly as travel and group activities were basically a no-go. That is when I decided that I wanted to work in an industry that could continue helping customers, regardless of the pandemic or other factors.
To me, it made sense to look for an innovative start-or scale-up that rides the wave of digitization. Soon, I found this in Mlytics.
How does Mlytics innovate?
Tars Geerts: At Mlytics, we are disrupting the cloud industry with solutions for a more resilient, faster, and safer internet world with transparency, choice, and control.
In short, we are redefining how website and application owners can easily and seamlessly cater their digital assets to their users, so users have the best possible digital experience. We do this with an AI-based traffic routing solution, accessible from the world’s biggest CDN marketplace.
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Tars Geerts: As you know, due to the global pandemic, many governments around the world decided to go into lockdowns, resulting in families being home-bound for a while. This has suddenly sped up the digitization of personal and professional lives. Professionally, employees had to start working from home, resulting in more online and virtual meetings, remote project management, and completing tasks digitally. Personally, people had to resort to digital methods to catch up with friends and family and consumed tons of online entertainment. The sudden increase in digital content consumption has caused many opportunities for Mlytics and the team. So to speak, the virus has created a sea of opportunities for us.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources and what are the lessons learned?
Tars Geerts: From the start, Mlytics has taken a very global, no-boundary approach in terms of working and human resources. We have branch offices and team members based out of the UK, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taipei, etc. So remote work has been a possible route since day one. That said, before the pandemic hit, team members still worked from the office. However, even before governments imposed lockdown rules, Mlytics was one step ahead and had team members work remotely due to safety concerns.
The sudden change into completely remote work had its pros and cons. Pros include more family time for employees as they spend less time commuting, as well as increased productivity due to fewer meetings and distractions. A challenge we saw was the consolidation of the feeling of ‘working as a team and keeping up morale in more challenging/stressful times.
For us, the biggest lesson we learned was to find a proper middle ground, where we can have the best of both worlds.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Tars Geerts: Mlytics offers a marketplace-like SaaS platform for digital experience delivery, so it has been part of our DNA to automate and scale customer relationship management since the beginning. We combine the human touch of a highly skilled customer success team with excellent CRM tools.
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
Tars Geerts: After going to market, Mlytics broke even in a record time, and we have been self-sustainable and been able to grow independently. We like to believe that it is a combination of good fortune, detailed planning, and flexibility that led to this fortunate event.
Your final thoughts?
Tars Geerts: I strongly believe that the speed of global digitization and the need for seamless digital content and experience delivery will continue to increase, and I am excited to see the Mlytics ecosystem further develop to see how, together with other excellent solution providers, we can help meet the needs of global netizens.