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Interview With Eyal Lanxner, Feedvisor’s CTO and Co-Founder
Stay on top of the latest e-commerce and marketplace trends.
You’re the CTO and co-founder of Feedvisor. How would you characterize Feedvisor’s journey from the beginning to today?
One of the prominent identifiers of Feedvisor, as opposed to other startups I’ve been connected to, is that it has maintained more or less the same vision since it was founded. The vision from the start was about creating a big data powerhouse for e-commerce, making it easier to reach smart and prompt decisions, and optimizing business performance. This vision, now more than ever, characterizes Feedvisor’s current mission, as we continue to expand our offering and customer base.
Let’s dig in to Feedvisor’s technology. How does Feedvisor use data and machine-learning to help its customers?
Generally speaking, as a data powerhouse, we strive to collect and make use of all data points that can assist our customers in optimizing their business performance. Once collected, we employ various machine-learning techniques to identify trends and insights, and in general – to better familiarize our customers with the market and competition. I would divide these activities into two main categories.
The first focuses on the data and processes of each individual customer, providing them with insights into the specifics of their business. The second focuses on the overall picture, aggregating data points available from numerous retailers and other sources. By analyzing such mass datasets, we gain valuable insights about the market as a whole. This, of course, improves each customer’s ability to understand the environment that they operate in, and quantify their competitive edge in comparison to other sellers in that environment.
How would you describe the e-commerce ecosystem, the marketplace that your customers are in? How does Feedvisor fit in to that picture?
Online retailers today have many more options and much more visibility into the platforms that they operate on. For instance, they can change prices by the minute, as well as receive very frequent snapshots of their competitive landscape, including the prices and characteristics of their competitors. Such environments drive the e-commerce world to become more and more dynamic, generating tremendous potential on one hand, but growing competition on the other. It is thus becoming more challenging for retailers to keep up with the pace and stay competitive.
In fact, given the large amounts of data and the frequency in which it changes, customers take inventory and pricing actions at a much higher pace compared to traditional commerce channels. Sometimes these decisions need to be made in a matter of minutes. This is where Feedvisor steps in. We help our customers automate and optimize these decisions so that they can focus on their overall strategy and long-term planning, rather than spend time on minute-to-minute tactics. According to our ongoing analysis, retailers employing Feedvisor’s platform and functionality greatly increase their chances for success.
How would you describe Feedvisor’s growth?
I typically measure Feedvisor’s growth through three main aspects – our employees, our customers, and our offering. On the employee side, we’ve been continuously growing throughout the company’s lifetime, where the emphasis in the last two years was has been growing our NY office, going from zero to over 40 employees to date. With regard to our customer base, not only has it continuously grown quantitatively, but more importantly – qualitatively, bringing in larger and larger customers year over year. Finally, with regard to our offering, we’re continuously extending and improving our optimization algorithms on one side, and providing a richer and more functional business intelligence platform on the other.
What kind of people does Feedvisor like to hire? What is the working environment like here?
I can say that since the beginning of Feedvisor, we’ve put a lot of emphasis on our hiring processes and have been very thoughtful about bringing in the right people. In general, we strive to bring in people that can quickly learn our business and environment, be empowered to take ownership of their work, and eventually lead the activity under their responsibility. I’d also say that people who succeed here are those that think outside of the box, work efficiently, and have a team-focused mindset.
What is one of your favorite Feedvisor memories?
As a technological entrepreneur, one of the most fascinating challenges for me is to solve real-world problems with science and technology. Hence, one of the most memorable experiences at Feedvisor was going live with the first algorithm I’ve developed. Seeing such work come to life and impacting the business performance of our customers was and still is a fascinating experience for me. In that sense, I consider myself lucky, as many researchers and scientists don’t live the experience of seeing their work go live and having such concrete impact.