SebWe caught up with Sebastian Deletaille the CEO of Real Impact Analytics. Real Impact Analytics has developed a strong expertise in the emerging market telecom industry, providing solutions that, among other examples, support the management of distribution channels, local/targeted marketing campaigns, and network infrastructure.

Who are you and what are you doing at Real Impact Analytics?

My name is Sebastian Deletaille and I’m the CEO of Real Impact Analytics. I’m here at Cebit because we were nominated in the fifty finalists of the Code_N contest. It’s a contest that basically brings together a whole series of start-ups active in big data.

What does your company do?

So, Real Impact Analytics is a company that specializes in telecom big data, so sixty percent of our revenue is really coming directly from mobile network operators. For them what do all of the data technology and services to answer their key business questions — from subscriber acquisitions to valued development to trim prevention. All sorts of operational questions like how to improve my marketing, my cells, my network coverage, and so on.

What is your business model?

So, we have a hybrid business model. By that I mean that we have a technology component where we sell our proprietary software and scripts, and we also sell services in a sense that we don’t believe that to get impact of your data, technology is the sole solution. That’s what our competition is doing. We’re trying very much to say how can we work with the technology to integrate it into your process, integrate it into your day by day, eventually to be with you in the beginning of the usage of the technology to make sure there’s real and long term change. That business model is hybrid, and naturally we’re very flexible, we’re a start-up, so when a client says, “We don’t want to buy the technology side, we just want to get the service side,” we adapt our offering to whatever the client needs.

What makes you unique?

Whenever you ask a company why they’re different, they’re going to tell you that they have the best ROI in the world, that they have the best teams in the world, that they have the best client references in the world, so everyone ends up saying the same thing when you ask them why they’re different. We don’t like to go into that game. We only tell telecom operators, “Give us your data, and you’ll see the results, and give the data to the others and ask them to do it at the same time. We’re very happy to be benchmarked. I can assure you that what you’ll see is different.” So our way of being different is just to say, “Dare us. Experience us. Open your data. From there, you’ll be able to define.”

Any case studies that you would like to talk about?

We’ve been tackling all sorts of telecom problems, so for every typical business need we have ROIs. Some of the things that we’re maybe most proud of are the following examples. In Brazil, for example, we were working with Telefonica, and they have a subscriber base of nineteen million people, so that’s amongst the biggest possible operators you could find on Earth. We have a huge corporate department, and all of the corporate departments are prepaid, so they have absolutely no information on who’s who, who’s the decision maker. So whenever they would call the corporate departments to try and upsell something, they’d phone a random number, which wasn’t correct.

Consequently, they asked us to come in, and we created an algorithm to actually predict whether someone was a decision maker or not, if he was a boss, and our algorithm worked extraordinarily well. They had a KPI on am I talking to the right person, it moved from ten percent to ninety percent, and because they were talking to the right people, their sales went up by thirty percent on all of their outbound corporate campaigns.

So the number was so high that the CMO of Telefonica, Brazil actually asked the IT department to check the data because he thought it was a data quality issue, and when he saw the data was actually right and that it was linked to our initiative, he actually said, “We want you to do all of our campaigning for the entire B2C customer base.” And so that’s one of the projects where we’re very, very proud, because we showed kind of rocket science results on a very specific business question, and then they said, “Okay, you’re really good at what you do, now we’re going to ask you to do it across all of our projects.”

Are you looking for any funding or special talent to hire?

Talent’s always a priority. I mean, that’s the only priority, frankly. For the moment, we’re in a stage of the start-up where we’re doubling in size every year, so I told you that we were thirty-five today, we’re probably going to end the year with around sixty people, so clearly attracting “hell yeah” people, as we call them, is the priority. In terms of funding, we’re currently self-funded. We’re managing to generate enough revenue to fund our growth. We’re not looking for any external funding for the moment, but maybe that will change. We’ll see later.

You’ve talked about Africa and Brazil. Are there any other markets that you’re focusing on?

So, we’re trying to keep as much of our focus on emerging markets as possible because that’s where we have really great expertise on what the telecom needs are, on what the realities of the field are, and the competition is much less there in those geographies than they are in, like, Europe or the US. Clearly, for the moment, the objective is to continue with our vision of being the reference for telecom big data. Working for five of the top ten telecoms is already a great achievement, but we want to get into at least ten of the top twenty. For that, it’s a question of moving quickly towards Asia, our next priority telecoms will be Telenor and Singtel. In terms of priorities, it’s always about delivering what your clients have ordered. This year we’re nearly tripling our revenue and by the end of this year we’ll see how we’re able to cope with high growth.

Any last words?

It’s really great to be here at Cebit, surrounded by people for whom big data is in their DNA. One of the reasons why we’re here at Cebit today is to present an innovation where we show how we can use telecom data for other applications than just the telecom needs, and so what we’re presenting today at Cebit is a concept called Data for Good. We’re working with the Gates foundation, with the World Bank, on showing them how we can use telecom data to basically improve poverty alleviation actions. What we showed them is that in country where there’s generally no data at all, we can learn from the telecom data how people are socially excluded, how they are financially excluded. These are two very big drivers that explain why people are stuck in poverty, and so this is an innovation we’re presenting. If I need to conclude on one last word is I hope that as we test our research across thirty countries this year, if it is working, that we’ll get the funding and scale it up to make a public good.

SebWe caught up with Sebastian Deletaille the CEO of Real Impact Analytics. Real Impact Analytics has developed a strong expertise in the emerging market telecom industry, providing solutions that, among other examples, support the management of distribution channels, local/targeted marketing campaigns, and network infrastructure.

Image Credit : Creativity103 (Telecom Tower)


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