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Sixfold: Vienna logistics start-up is taken over by German Transporeon

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They track trucks on their way through Europe and can ensure the reduction of CO2 and empty kilometres by optimising them on the basis of this data: The start-up Sixfold, founded in Vienna around CEO and co-founder Wolfgang Wörner, is an insider tip among logistics start-ups. Together with its four Estonian co-founders, Wörner has now managed to track goods worth 500 million euros per day. This has now convinced the long-standing partner Transporeon from Germany to take over Sifxold. The Viennese start-up will remain an independent company and will track all 20 million transports that are awarded via Transporeon in the future. With 700 employees, the new German mother is one of the most important logistics software providers worldwide. In an interview with Trending Topics, Wörner talks about the takeover of his start-up, what you can do with the logistics data and how the company’s bridge to Estonia works. Wolfgang Wörner, CEO von Sixfold. © Sixfold Trending Topics: Sixfold is 2017. What vision did you have then and with what strategy did you come closer to it?
Wolfgang Wörner: Transport logistics is very fragmented and has a low degree of digitization, resulting in a high degree of inefficiencies. For example, 25 to 30 percent of all truck kilometres travelled in Europe are driven empty. This means an enormous unnecessary co2 impact on our environment and a significant economic damage to society – after all, the transport costs incurred are passed on to the product costs that we all have to pay. At Sixfold, we wanted and want to address these inefficiencies through digitalisation and better transparency. How can these inefficiencies be eliminated in concrete terms?
In concrete terms, better connectivity helps those who have to transport goods and those who transport goods better align supply and demand – much like Uber did for passenger transportation. In Europe alone, there are almost one million companies that provide transport and logistics services. We were aware from the outset that the fragmentation and size of the transport sector meant that we had to take a highly scalable approach. As a result, it was clear to us that we need to use existing systems and data to collect data ourselves using our own hardware or a new proprietary system. For this reason, we have built up a network that aggregates, cleanses, standardizes and interprets data from existing systems (ERP software, transport management software, fleet management software, telematics, etc.) using modern interfaces. So the key to success lies in networking and partnerships with a variety of other system providers. In addition, it was and is part of our strategy to focus on major customers operating worldwide or Europe. Only they have the size, market power and innovative power to bring about change in a sector that has seen little innovation in recent decades. For this, too, it was essential for us to enter into partnerships with other system providers at an early stage in order to be able to win Fortune 500 corporations as customers as a young company. You recently announced a merger with Transporeon. Is this a merger or a takeover, and what is the specific concept of the partnership?
Transporeon – a platform on which more than 1,200 shippers award transportto more than 100,000 transport companies – was the first and most important partner for us in order to be able to win global corporations as customers at a very early stage. As a result, we have been working closely together for some time. The merger – a acquisition in which Sixfold remains an independent company – will allow us to develop more common and integrated solutions, in line with our strategy set out above. In concrete terms, the partnership now means that we track all 20 million transports that are awarded through Transporeon. Together, we form the world’s most powerful transport network, enabling end-to-end tracking, and will be able to develop a variety of other solutions in the future. Sixfold tracks goods worth 500 million euros in real time every day. What is being driven through the area at the moment? Are there any changes over time?
Since we have customers from different industries, we also track a range of these – whether transports of food, packaging material, insulation materials, chemicals or automotive parts. Our three core industries are consumer goods and retail (with customers such as Coca-Cola, Nestlé or Tesco), building materials and paper and packaging materials. Due to our broad customer base, there are usually no major changes over a certain period of time. After all, it is a cross-section of the entire economy. However, COVID-19-19 and the associated challenges to the supply chain have led to massive changes here– at least in the short term. While consumer goods and commerce carried out 20 to 30 percent more shipments, especially at the beginning of the pandemic, in order to meet the changed demand, there were massive declines in many industries, after the lockdown caused many factories to be temporarily closed, e.g. in the automotive industry. What can be done with this data? What optimizations are possible?
You can roughly divide the whole thing into 3 categories: Creating transparency: Today, most shippers are blind as soon as a truck is on the road. They don’t know where the cargo is and when it arrives at the destination. Often shippers only learn of a delayed delivery when the customer calls to complain. This leads to dissatisfaction and a large number of manual expenses, e.g. “check calls” at the transport service provider. We produce automated, end-to-end transparency, improving customer service and reducing manual effort.
More efficient operations: Many operational processes are directly linked to transport logistics. We help our customers, for example, to reduce waiting and waiting times at the warehouse by determining which goods should be delivered at which ramp and at what time; or in which we enable just-in-time production planning based on predictable goods flows.
Reduction of CO2 and empty kilometres: Our data enables us to ensure better matching of transport supply and demand – e.g. reduction of empty return journeys by brokering suitable orders.
Where do you get this real-time data from, and for whom are you interesting? Who can you offer this data to?
We receive the data from our customers, i.e. the loading industry as well as logistics and transport service providers, or their system providers. Specifically, this is about order data on the one hand and truck movement data on the other. The key is the aggregation of data from hundreds of thousands of sources and intelligent processing using AI and machine learning to generate insights and value from it. Since our service relates to the transports of our customers, we offer our data exclusively to the respective parties involved in the transport: consignors or recipients and transport service providers. After all, this is highly sensitive data. For other stakeholders, we only use our data in highly aggregated form, such as our marginal waiting times, which we make available to the general public as part of the Covid-19 pandemic. The real-time observation of goods flows is certainly also very interesting for cyber criminals. How do they protect the network and data from misuse?
Both data privacy and data security are of course very important topics for us due to the sensitivity of the data. With regard to data privacy, the legislation (GDPR) provides a good and strict framework, in my opinion. We have firmly anchored this in our contractual terms – with partners and customers – as well as in our internal processes (product development, support, etc.). When it comes to security, we only work according to the latest standards and best practices – from our cloud-based infrastructure hosted by Google to the E2E-encrypted transmission of data. They launched Sixfold 2017 with four co-founders in Vienna. The HQ is still in Vienna, but there are several other offices, especially in Estonia. Why there?
My four co-founders are all from Estonia. They had already founded a supply chain tech start-up in the past – and closed it again. After getting to know each other through our network, we saw great potential in creating Sixfold together. And fortunately, we have been right with this. Estonia is the world’s flagship country on e-government and generally very advanced in IT and digitalisation. There is therefore a large pool of talent in the IT sector, despite the size of the country. A big driver for this was also the success of Skype. Two of my co-founders are ex-Skypers, one of whom was Employee Number 7. The success of Skype has given the Estonian tech community a strong drive and is seen as the starting point for a startup boom that has spawned unicorns such as Transferwise, Bolt and Starship in recent years. This includes a strong ecosystem of former Skype employees who founded themselves.

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New OnePlus 9RT: Specs, launch date, colors revealed

OnePlus hasn’t said how much RAM the 9 RT will feature, however Geekbench has shown that it will sport 12GB of RAM. However, an 8GB variant will almost certainly be available.

Shenzhen [China]: The OnePlus 9 RT’s launch date and specifications have been revealed by OnePlus ahead of its official announcement.

According to GSM Arena, the OnePlus 9 RT will go on sale in China on October 13, or next week.
Although the new OnePlus smartphone will be unveiled in China first, it is expected to make its way to India as well. In India, the OnePlus 9 RT has yet to be announced.

The Snapdragon 888 SoC will power the OnePlus 9 RT, which will be paired with LPDDR5 RAM and UFS 3.1 storage. It will have a 120Hz E4 screen and a 4,500mAh battery that will charge at 65W. The primary camera on the 9 RT will be 50 megapixels.

OnePlus hasn’t said how much RAM the 9 RT will feature, however Geekbench has shown that it will sport 12GB of RAM. However, an 8GB variant will almost certainly be available.

The phone maker also revealed that the 9 RT will be available in two colour options: black and grey, and that pre-orders will begin on October 13 in China, with the first sale on October 19.

We’re still four days away from the launch, so expect more information regarding the OnePlus 9 RT in the days leading up to it.

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Meaning of CEO, COO, CFO, CIO, CTO and CMO: Calling each executive by name

The adoption of business terms and technicalities from English-speaking organizations is increasingly widespread, and acronyms that describe executive positions are often favorites when used by those responsible for the areas of the company. The use of acronyms such as CEO, COO, CIO, CTO and CMO has become widespread, both in more traditional organizations such as startups and other technology-based companies.

But what is the meaning of these acronyms?

If we pay careful attention to its definition, we will see that the meaning of CEO and the rest of the management figures of companies are much simpler than you thought.

What is the CEO of a company?

The CEO of a company is the acronym corresponding to the acronym for Chief Executive Officer, which in Spain we usually know as CEO or Executive Director. He is the head of administrative management and direction in the company.

Who is the COO?

It comes from the Chief Operating Officer and can be translated as Director of Operations or Chief of Operations, responsible for the daily operations of the company such as production, logistics, etc.

What does CFO stand for in English?

CFO is the abbreviation for Ch IEF Financial Officer. In our business culture it corresponds to the Chief Financial Officer and his responsibility is the economic and financial planning of the company based on the objectives established by the board of directors, generally made up of those responsible for each area that we are analyzing in this post.

What is the CIO of a company?

It comes from the acronym for Chief Information Officer. Their role is attributed to the person responsible for the company’s information technology systems and usually falls into different professional profiles depending on the organization’s structure. Thus, the position of CIO may be the counterpart of the systems manager, although there is ambiguity in its implementation and it is often confused with the CTO, which we explain below.

What does the acronym CTO stand for?

It is the abbreviation of Chief Technology Officer and it is usual to give it the same treatment as the system manager in an erroneous way by many companies. The main difference is that while the CIO is responsible for the company’s information services at the process level and from the planning point of view, the CTO is the technical person in charge of the development and correct operation of the information systems from the point of view of execution.

What is a CMO in a company?

It corresponds to the acronym of Chief Marketing Officer and its translation in our business language is that of Marketing Director as the head of sales and product development, among other functions.

Its application in practice is different according to the structure of each organization, and there may be various combinations in the hierarchy of these executive positions. In general, the meaning of CEO of the company falls on the highest part of the organization and has as subordinates the executives responsible for each area, who report directly to this CEO to make his decisions. However, in other organizational models, the position of CEO held by its president as the visible image in communication and public relations of the company, delegating the highest decision-making authority to the COO.

The meaning of CEO extends

This definition nomenclature of executive positions in companies does not end here. Many of these terms did not exist a few years ago, and the increasing specialization of departments in large organizations gives rise to new positions, which after the meaning of CEO and the other positions that we have seen evolve into new figures such as the CSO (Chief Science Officer), CCO (Chief Commercial Officer), CLO (Chief Legal Officer) among many other definitions of executive positions.

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Coworking: Need or Opportunity?

Many times when it comes to undertaking we see that there are a great multitude of impediments that stop our initiative.

One of the most obvious, especially in times of crisis, is financing. That is why a work modality called coworking has proliferated in Spain for a few years. But what is coworking?

The foundation of coworking is to bring together professionals from different fields in the same space where they can develop their activity, which means significant cost savings. In other words, it’s like having roommates with whom you share expenses.

Surely, you have heard a friend talk about a coworking space, collaborative work, cost savings, … So far great, but the philosophy that underlies this type of work is even broader. The work tends to be increasingly multidisciplinary and many times, as entrepreneurs , we cannot cover the requests of a potential client.

We are going to put an example. Let’s imagine that we are a freelance professional specialized in Online Marketing and we have several accounts as a Community Manager.

As you are self-employed, but you are not motivated either by being in your pajamas all day locked at home listening to music, or worse, some gossip program that they give in the morning on TV – not to mention going to work in a library where the WIFI is slower than on your first Smartphone – you decide to try a coworking space where you have all the comforts for a small price and from which you can always “run away” if things don’t go well for you.

One fine day comes the opportunity to create a Social Media plan for a company. Within this Plan the creation of a corporate blog, the creation of videos,… to which you obviously answer: “no problem!” Is contemplated, since it is an opportunity that you cannot miss.

Once you dismiss the client, you sit in your chair and a cold sweat starts to run down your forehead thinking “now how do I do all this?”

From its programming, database creation, corporate identity creation … to the creation of promotional videos and a long etcetera.

Suddenly you raise your head like a meerkat in the African savannah and you see Nika, that nice girl who is a web designer and a little further on you see Alfon, that “compi” with whom you go out for beer on Fridays when you finish ” currar ”and it turns out that in addition to working as an illustrator, he has a hobby which is making videos, especially for his friends, and on top of that, it’s really good!

Et voilá! You already have a fully qualified team to carry out your project… and who knows if a future company. This idea is what underlies the coworking philosophy : Being able to create flexible collaborative environments that adapt to the needs of projects or clients.

Obviously, cooperative work has its advantages and disadvantages. Creating a multidisciplinary team for a project can be complicated, since managing the team is not an easy task when the participants do not share a mutual philosophy or common goals. Therefore, it is important to create a team that complements each other both on a human and professional level, and above all that wants to move the project forward.

From my own experience, if you want to develop your own project and do not have funding , it is better to make it very clear to the participants the delivery times and what their role in the team is. Otherwise, you will end up spending more time trying to coordinate people than working directly on your project.
“Luck is what happens when preparation and opportunity meet and merge.” Voltaire

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