Today we travel to Israel to feature one of our newest startups built on Azure.
Mobeye is a SaaS live video production company that helps media agencies and e-commerce sites create & monetize feature-rich, live broadcast events (with or without celebrities) & TV Shows at a fraction of what it costs today.
R&D Manager and Cofounder Igor Rabinovich says the company started out as a social network where users post live streams instead of text, images or archived video. But they had a big "ah-ha" moment when they realized that people with phones and tablets were utilizing social streams as a second screen augmentation. When they considered that they could wrap e-commerce into this, they knew they knew they were on to something.
We sat down with Igor to ask him how he got the company started, and to ask him for advice that he could give to other aspiring entrepreneurs.
Tell us about your funding history. Are you currently looking for funding?
We are after seed investment and looking for Round A investments this days.
How many employees do you have? 5 How many of them are developers?
We have 5 employees : Me and my 2 developers maintenance platform that ~10 developers developed for 4 months. In addition we have BD and Sales woman for part time job.
What MSFT technologies are you using in conjunction with the development of your application?
Microsoft Azure Web Roles / Worker Roles , CDN , Table Strorage Azure SQL , Signal R
How is Azure implemented in your solution?
Widget , Event Management System , BO – Web Roles , Message Server (used for SignalR messaging and Push Messages to MobEye Mobile Apps) – Worker Role , Cache , Azure MSSQL , Azure CDN , Signal R , Scheduler (task management system using TPL)– Worker role
How did you get excited about Azure?
It took ~1 month for 2 developers with my minor help to migrate pretty big system to Azure from VMs we had. It’s amazing.
What were the Azure features that prompted you to decide to build on Azure?
Easy scaling out / in of the system on demand without necessarily to add/remove VMs
What advice do you have for companies that are thinking about building in the cloud?
Do not stat development if u do not understand how u should scale out your system.
Do you build for scale first, or for revenue? How are those things related in your mind? Revenue is more important for us right now because it show to potential investor that industry needs our service.
Do you make reasonable predictions about how you are going to achieve revenue and then test them out, or do you start with a business model and deploy it, to see if it brings in revenue?
Obviously we make predictions and we really believe that they are reasonable.
What questions do you think a startup non-technical founder needs to answer when considering a cloud architecture for his or her startup, specifically during the business model generation period?
One of first questions that founder should ask his self where the system will deployed, if the answer is Enterprise Server farm, than he should not think about cloud. In all other cases – he must think cloud.
What questions do you and your technical co-founder / engineering team feel are the most important to solve about the business aspects of your company?
Make UI responsiveness, infrastructure be scalable and architecture as SOA as possible.
Where do you include technical members of your team during the building of your business plan?
How much of what you are building is based on leaving a legacy and how much of it is based on technical challenges, or the ability to make something just for fun? In other words, where do you fall on the seriousness scale? For fun, for profit, for life?
Our customers (Media agencies, enterprises) using our platform for profit but for target audience of their campaigns using our platform must be fun.
When did you decide that you were “startup material”? After 10 years working as employee I understood that I have 1 life to live and I must try to create something from scratch.
What characteristics do you possess that make you an entrepreneur? What makes your startup a startup?
I think the most important characteristic for entrepreneur is business think flexibility. What I mean is that I do not familiar with startup that started with specific idea and have finished with it so – improvise do not hesitate to fail!
Do you have any advice for young startups?
Just do it, you have one life to live.
Can you describe the relationship that you have had with Microsoft in building your startup?
Microsoft have added me to BizSpark+ plan and linked me to local partners that helped me with some technical problems we have stuck with.
What do you think of the BizSpark Program? It’s very useful program that caused to me to work with Microsoft technologies instead of using alternative solutions.
Why would an entrepreneur turn to Microsoft for help in building scale, a team, or using software?
Igor Rabinovich, R&D Manager and Co-Founder