salesBeat is a newly launched AI-driven platform that uses micro and macro factors to model consumer buying behaviour and makes predictive recommendations of optimal order volumes for FMCG salespeople to discuss with customers, ensuring 100% availability of brands in store, without overstocking. Currently sales are simply gauged on what was sold last year and do not take into account any important factors influencing consumer decision making (temperature (weather), demographics around store locations, traffic and commuting preferences etc) which can change vastly from day to day, let alone over a year.
Alex, my co-founder and I founded the company in 2019.
salesBeat makes precise predictions for 4 to 6 weeks and is pioneering sales intelligence in the fast-moving consumer goods sector.
This is a great tool for key account managers and distributor managers in the fast-moving consumer goods industry and also for supermarkets and convenience chains. It helps eliminate waste and stock-outs; and therefore will not only save businesses money but also increase revenues by 10% – 30%.
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
I worked for several years within the FMCG industry for companies like PepsiCo and Diageo before we launched salesBeat in 2019, and my co-founder Alex has a history in tech start-ups and extensive experience in creating apps.
We met at Antler (an accelerator) in Sweden. When the pandemic started in early 2020, we realised that availability of brands in retail would be impacted in the long term due to changes in habits during the period and launched the platform to eliminate stock-outs in stores.
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How has the company evolved during the pandemic?
Before the pandemic hit, we had a marketplace that matched FMCG companies and freelancers, suppliers and other service providers as there was no ready ‘directory’ of the FMCG eco-system that the companies could look up, whenever needed. However, when the pandemic hit and products started running out of stock at stores, we knew this would create problems in 2021.
From my experience working in sales in this sector, I knew that salespeople typically use the previous year’s sales volumes as a basis to agree on order volumes with customers in any given year. However, the pandemic would not only result in unreliable data (driven by panic buying) but, due to behaviour and lifestyle changes, would not form a good basis for the next year.
The stockouts we see in the cooking oil and ingredients sector is due to this. More people cook at home now than they did before the pandemic. However, sales teams and supermarkets are still placing orders on the basis of 2019 data (as they cannot use 2020 data)
So we pivoted from a marketplace to an AI-driven platform eliminating out of stocks and overstocking at supermarkets and convenience stores.
What can we hope to see from salesBeat in the future?
Our goal is to eliminate out of stocks in stores, so consumers never have to settle for an alternative or go without. Out of stocks are not just frustrating for consumers, but costs the industry $3tn in lost revenues annually. Overstocking costs the sector another $1.2tn annually.