Startup Of The Week: ARON
Meet Ričardas Šukys – CEO and Founder of ARON, an artificial-intelligence system that changes driver behavior, motivating him think about every step doing daily tasks and activities. In this interview Ričardas tells us more about this first and only driving performance changing tool in EU and other markets.
So what is Aron? How it works?
ARON is a game changing Artificial Intelligence tool for transportation companies, that maximizes driving performance, optimizes the distance truck drivers can drive, minimizesviolations which equals more monthly and annual revenue for a company.
In everyday activities transport undertakings undergo a bunch of issues, top of those are related to efficiency ones:
Do drivers work efficiently? Do drivers optimally drive the full time, are they able to plan driving and rest time properly? Are the routes selected for the drivers profitable? Are the tasks scheduled as accurate as possible?
ARON changes driver behavior, motivating him think about every step doing daily tasks and activities, such as loading/unloading procedures, smoking cigarette, drinking coffee or chatting with colleagues, in order to complete it in efficient manner.
It effects not only drivers or transport companies, it also gives accuracy for suppliers organizing tenders when choosing transport company for cargo transportation. It means cargo is carried by transport companies of quality, in the end of the day end user profits from that as he/she gets his/her ordered parcel on expected time.
The company’s profitability may be higher, no need for enormously huge investments in fleet and additional human resources! How to reach that? ARON will help companies not only to answer these questions, but also to achieve positive changes in their work results.
A company can use ARON to find out the overall performance of a company.
Efficiency Score is calculated automatically based on the hours worked and the kilometers driven by the activated drivers in ARON system. Current Efficiency Score is compared to the last two months so you can see changes in results. Higher score means your company got more revenue in the current month, and your drivers worked more efficiently and drove more kilometers.
What are your competitors and competitive advantages?
ARON is a first and only driving performance changing tool in EU and other markets of such kind. The competitive advantages of ARON? Those are increase of revenue for transportation companies with minimal investments and real-time education of drivers while driving. ARON is not analytics tool, where you need to spend hours making analysis. ARON is a product which makes impact and changes company’s balance sheet. ARON is a Win Win product for manufacturers, suppliers, transportation companies and their drivers.
What were the reasons behind coming up with this idea and launching this product?
From the personal and business within transportation and logistics sector experience, we have noticed that road transport activities could be optimized, kilometers that are being wasted can be saved and revenue being lost every day can fill up transportation companies around Europe and other countries. Next sensitive point, high level of driving and resting times regulation violations in the European transport market, which results in accidents in traffic, exhausted drivers and injured road users, as well as millions of Euros paid for violations detected.
When exactly did you launch, what were the main challenges before launching?
September, 2017. The main challenge before launching was hunting for experienced personnel and high-level specialists in project management, IT development, marketing and sales. It goes without saying, financial investments was challenge.
What are main challenges while working on this product and how are you overcoming them?
Huge Financial Investment needs for development of new functionalities and solutions to help drivers conduct their driving more efficiently.
How are you funded? Do you seek extra funding?
Feasibility study was made under European Commission investment. Project development goes on our own investments. Extra funding to be considered.
Please introduce your founders, your core team and your broader team?
I am a founder of ARON. My core team consists of experienced in their field specialists. One of our strengths is technical part, where we cooperate with one of the biggest development companies in Central and Eastern Europe “NFQ Technologies”.
(Ričardas Šukys photo by personal archive)
How has business been so far? Could you share some numbers to illustrate this (users, sales, etc)?
Even though we are fresh in the market, ARON users increase is 300+ drivers per day.
Future plans, ambitions? Simply speaking – what’s next?
Further development of the product, new product versions which will help to solve more business critical situations. Our goal is to become standard of the market.
Thank you for the answers, Ričardas!