Here is the exclusive interview of George Marinakis – CEO, MTIS. He shared his insights on upcoming technology trends for 2022 and many more things in this interview.
Q: Please give us a brief background on MTIS and the services it provides.
A: MTIS is a scale-up enterprise, which disrupt and revolutionize the entire maritime industry, embodying ingenuity, innovation, and foresight.
As we all know, starting a start-up enterprise requires a combination of motivation and mindset, including independence, agility, persistence, and drive. Creating a scale-up business like MTIS, as opposed to startups, requires additional elements to materially increase the degree of success: prior corporate experiences, industry know-how and field expertise.
MTIS founders, all have prior corporate experiences & industry background under their belt and its core team is packed with extensive maritime knowledge and technology competences, that qualifies them as true masters of the maritime sector. MTIS development team, with the perfect combination of skills and expertise, uses popular Rapid Application Development (RAD) methodologies for modularized software that promises seamless and fast production of the brand new MTIS i-Platform to meet the ever-growing development requirements of maritime companies around the world. By doing so, MTIS turn its users into ambassadors by over-delivering from the very start, and keeping up that standard along the way, winning the “bet”.
Coming from the industry, with a fresh new outlook, and a business concept that is “designed to scale”, MTIS topple incumbents that have been around all the while, takes off with high growth rate garnering an unprecedented number of clients very fast, thanks to its innovative IoT platform and the attractive “Migration Program”, offering very quickly optimism for its founders and stakeholders.
Q: What I feel for your company is that it has an excellent work culture, provides a good digital platform, and has also gained a trustworthy reputation in the maritime industry relatively quickly. What are the Innovation Principles behind MTIS?
A: There is growing awareness that innovation is a key driver of economic growth, and a key solution to global challenges. However, to have the capacity to innovate and bring innovation successfully to the market, a supportive policy environment is necessary.
Following are the major principles which guide us in creating the innovation-framework, which enables the emergence of productive, resilient, competitive, and sustainable business development.
Customer First: MTIS is a customer-centric company at its core, making the customer's experience the key focus of every interaction and constantly trying to improve it.
Always, our aim is to get to know our customers better and understand what are their biggest issues? How can we improve our product or service based on these findings and deliver unique experiences tailored to each customer needs instead of one-size-fits-all solutions?
Our creative thinking around customers, is rooted in solving customer problems or fill a need for them, delivering a consistently high-quality experience.
Open and collaborative: MTIS team up with a variety of co-active partners, in a wide number of ways, to create solutions of economic value for the market we serve.
In the hyperconnected 21st century when great ideas, product, and services, can sprout from any corner of the world and the available technology has dramatically reduced the time and cost of gain access to them, it’s critical to be open and collaborative.
Moreover -in our days, virtually no companies can't innovate alone. It’s now conventional wisdom that, scarcity-minded, closed business models eventually come to nothing, and open platforms, eventually win.
Think broadly: Our motto is “Think broadly” and this propels us to strive for radically new digital innovations. Actually, innovation is not really happening in the C-Level. It’s not even happening in the ICT department. While the C-Level and ICT are prominent participants in innovation projects, most of the ideas are coming from outside the company. They can come at anytime from anywhere of the world. They can come from our clients, from our partners, from the social media, from a book and from an article, among many-many other sources.
Ideas are everywhere these days, and any idea has the potential to become a catalyst for innovation. So, adopting the “Broad-minded Thinking”, we become cooperative, adaptable, and tolerant. Consequently, we perceive new ideas as an opportunity for innovation rather than waste of time. That’s way, we empower, we innovate, and we have a strong sense of pride in everything we do.
Think Big, Start Small, Scale Fast: The difference between success and failure often comes down to six words…and here is where Jim Carroll's mantra, “Think big, start small, scale fast” comes in.
At each leg of our journey, we try to make sure that we understand the emerging context. Every day we consider, for example, how disruptive forces, like digitalization, decarbonization, and globalization, will transform our customer preferences, enable new markets and how -at the end of day, they can change the world. We are not too satisfied to explore doomsday scenarios, including how disruptive forces might drive us out of business. Thanks to our adaptive capacity, instead of focusing on the problem, we focus on the solution. Rather than focuses on just the "the bottom line" or marginal improvements, we dare to dream big.
Of course, we do not try to change the world right away. What I am used to saying is that great things almost always start small. Most of us know that Richard Branson started the Virgin brand with a student magazine. Most of us know that even historical successes like Microsoft, Apple, or Google, started with a few people in a garage.
Currently, we are a small group of people, but we are operating in line with a clear, long-term mission of what we're trying to achieve, accompanied with passion, hard-work, and dedication. The more we succeed, the more we want to succeed, and the more we find a way to succeed. Therefore, starting small is important because it creates wins that will drive us to move forward to create even more wins.
Now, scale fast is a challenge for any company and involves various “growing pains.” It requires managed risk, planning, some funding and the right systems, personnel, processes, technology, and partners. Ensuring at very beginning that we have all eight, we are able today to handle an increase in sales, development, and support services in a cost-effective and reasonable manner without almost any hindrance. In fact, we have every reason to be satisfied and proud.
Data-driven platform: MTIS’s data-driven culture, encourages our clients to make decisions using reliable data and analytics to get business insights that lead to improve their business decisions, resulting positive business outcomes. For our clients that fully commit to being data-driven, this choice offers significant payoffs that can make the difference between surviving and thriving…and thanks to our intuitive business model, we win when our clients win.
Q: Please describe the operational model of your company from the moment a client walks in, to the final product deployment.
A: We advocate for transparency and trust when it comes to building rapport with our clients. So, we can’t be transparent at the time of sharing our detailed operational model with you, but we can give a bit overview about how it's looks like.
Well, every company has different operational models and different rules and responsibilities that they manage according to their project’s type & size. As I mentioned, our development model is agile in every manner. Our process is modular and as transparent as can be.
The objective behind maintaining this model, is to reduce defects from the product early as possible and gain an excellent customer experience in all aspects of the life cycle. Moreover, it helps us provide on-time, within budget and without sacrificing quality product and services to our customers and keep them ahead of the competition.
Q: What business engagement model do you offer to approach your ongoing relationship with your customers?
A: When the time comes to offering our product & services to our clients, the mission is clear: To deliver the very best we can do according to their budget, business practices and business model. Moreover, the times we live in, the growing trend of customization is gaining momentum and we, as digital service providers and software designers, need to be ready to meet these requirements. So, our engagement models are flexible enough to accommodate all the shipping market segments we are involved, in an interactive way throughout their entire buying journey. More to the point, the approach that MTIS take to engaging and building relationships with its customers locally and internationally, can be divided into two major parts:
Client-Touch model: Wherein we analyzed the customers’ requirements, document the scope of work, and deliver them in one go or in iterations as the circumstances demand. The delivery model is mostly fueled by our skillful and agile personnel, our attractive price ranges, and the feedback of our customer.
Partner-Touch model: Wherein we look to cooperate with another party along common gools to advance our interests across boarders’ geographies and into additional market segments. This delivery model is mostly fueled by our partner’s well-trained team and always according MTIS standards & principles of business.
Q: What is your outlook for 2022?
A: In my opinion, three main topics appear set to take precedence in the maritime industry in 2022. These topics will define the broad contours of the market outlook for next year, so the understanding of them is critical for making business moves in the months ahead.
The three topics
. Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to meet the global goal.
. Sustainability and resilience in operations to remain competitive.
. Greater technology uptake and digitalization for monitoring and policy responses.
The journey to complying with the above doesn’t have to be dark and stormy for our clients. We have successfully concluded a series of new products, designed to promote inclusive innovation, helping our clients and the industry we serve to get ready for the most pressing topics and biggest market opportunities in 2022.
Apart from the launch of new technologies, we are planning to expand our overseas business and take it to another plus level while growing our professional team.
So, looking at how things stand at the moment, I feel entirely positive about 2022.