FANTOO: INNOVATIVE INTELLIGENCE, PRIORITISING PRODUCTIVITY
ENVESTORS magazine preview
The average office worker tends to have an idea how their day will pan out (in my case, with the help of post-its and scraps of paper. Not ideal). However, the best laid plans… a call from a client, a complaint or anything that is unexpected, can lead to a confusing myriad of emails, phone calls and suddenly one’s priorities are entirely reversed. Then there are the days that we clear our inboxes and it all runs smoothly, but have we genuinely delivered value to our business? Is all this information actionable and appropriate?
FANTOO CEO Jordan Fantaay understands this. A serial entrepreneur, he started his first business at the age of 18. A self-confessed music devotee – but without the singing or playing skills – he produced high end hi-fis that were able to send music wirelessly to different rooms of a house (quite the innovation in the mid-90’s). These stereos were picked up by Harrods, which led to a chance meeting with the CEO of David Lloyd Leisure, who was looking for a way to wirelessly entertain his members with an audio stream while they exercised. Jordan spent the next 15 years building this new business and eventually became the world’s second largest company in the fitness entertainment space. His third company produced interactive screens, with the help of AI, that got to ‘know’ the individual exercising and tailored their entertainment accordingly. In its first year, Jordan took the company’s earnings from zero to $4m; eventually he sold the business to Google.
‘I’d experienced some IP theft through a company in China’, explains Jordan. ‘Coupled with near constant travelling, I was exhausted and decided to try something completely new. I had long been interested – in particular, with the fact that I was abroad so often and away from my desk – in how to increase my efficiency and workplace. This became the genesis of FANTOO. The workplace productivity space is an emerging sector in technology, but I wanted to take it a step further than the current offerings. We have built a platform that streamlines all information and web-based applications – whether it is WhatsApp, email, Instant Messaging etc - into one place on the desktop. This allows the user to task what is important and saves them having to jump around different tabs or apps. For example, you’re planning a trip to Manchester to meet a client. FANTOO will identify this - from your task list or calendar - and seamlessly offer suggestions to you around your task, such as train tickets, suitable hotels and so on. By leveraging priority messaging into one centre, we silence all the noise and clutter and allow the user to triage the appropriate information into deliverables. This, in turn, then allows them to have a reflection point: for example, have they got the quote back to the customer? FANTOO will identify these committed times and help them achieve the crucial tasks that ultimately serve the individual and the business overall.
Is it spyware? ‘Not at all’, continues Jordan. ‘Management are being provided with a solution. The opt in metrics and analytics are used only as far as how much time is available and how long an employee spends on a certain application. For instance, a company with a workforce of 300 people, spends on average $300k a year on SaaS applications; the industry average is that 20% of that is wasted on virtually unused apps. FANTOO will identify these and, by cancelling the unnecessary subscriptions, the business will naturally save money. Ultimately, this is about empowering a team: by better understanding what is being used and what is not, by saving employees valuable time by determining which information feeds are appropriate to them, the FANTOO software inevitably leads to higher productivity and a vastly augmented sense of wellbeing, control and success’.
The business is now starting to think in global terms. With the mentorship of chairman Andre Boisvert, (a Silicon Valley veteran) with a long and highly successful career that included selling Revolution Analytics to Microsoft for $150m in January 2015. He also co-founded The Pentaho Corporation in October 2004, the world’s most popular commercial open source business intelligence platform, that was subsequently acquired by Hitachi Data Systems for over $500m in February 2015), and the entrepreneurial skills of Jordan, this experienced and connected management team is seeking funding to leapfrog into the US. They have already raised £500,000 and are looking to increase this to £750,000, which will give them enough runway to get to their monthly recurring revenue target of £40,000. Since launching the software in December 2017, they have signed 25+ businesses and have over 1,000 active, paid daily users. The global computer giant Dell is one such partner, so much so that FANTOO were handpicked by Michael Dell himself to be the company’s first ever Global Startup in Residence.
Jordan himself says it best. ‘I believe a vision should be concise and yet broad. FANTOO’s vision is to be the end user communication-collaboration interface for business users globally’.
This post was created on August 31 2018 by Victoria Maby