Our vision: Track everything anywhere
Our first product is iTraq+ its the smallest global location tracking device with hybrid technology. It can report its location from both indoors and outdoors (by using combination of Cell-ID and GPS).
This product helps people peace of mind, knowing where there loved ones are and keep track of their valuables
We also have product for businesses (shipment and asset tracking).
We expect that smart tracking devices and smart labels will become affordable and available. People and valuables will never be lost. Hundreds of millions of tracking devices and labels will report Billions of locations every day. Savings will be huge, people will be safer and businesses smarter.
Tell us a bit about yourself. Who are you and what do you do?
I am Ilya Billig and like our technology, I am a hybrid product myself.
– Have Computer Science background and Business/Marketing experience,
– Corporate scale (10 years at Microsoft) and startup vibe (this is my 3rd startup)
– Hardware and software development experiencein iTraq I am in charge of Business Development
This is my third startup
What does a typical day in your life look like?
Respond to customer questions that come from our current Indiegogo campaign
Quick daily planning with my colleagues
Calls with existing and future partners
More Emails – this time follow up with partners
Respond to customer questions that came during a day – I like to have zero unanswered requests before calling it a day
Tell us something that most people don’t know about you
I did 7 years of figure skating when I was a kid and spent 10 seasons in Archaeological expeditions
How did you come up with the idea for your product and what made you “go for it”
At the time of idea inception, the core members of future iTraq worked at the First Line Software. Their client asked them to help develop a small module that can be used for cellular location tracking. The team so the opportunity to disrupt the market with small tracking devices with long battery life and formed the new company- iTraq with the idea of building consumer and business products for location tracking
What made you decide to go with crowdfunding (or venture capital)?
We chose to go to Indiegogo, because it gives instant justification for the idea. If people like your product, if there is a need on the market – you see it immediately. It is the path of ultimate truth. In our case during two Indiegogo campaigns people voted with their wallets and we raised $400,000 and our second campaign is still running. This proves the demand and puts us in touch with real customers, their pains, problems, and ideas.
What is the best decision you’ve ever made with your product (financial, emotional, educational) that led to the product we’re experiencing today?
The best and most difficult decision was to delay the product we promised to our customers during our first campaign. This sounds completely strange, but at the end of our first campaign it became clear that no matter how many times we say that we are making non-rechargeable device, people we still asking us how they will be able to recharge the device. Another area of confusion was – accuracy of the location reports. So, we decided to delay the shipping and upgrade all customers from our first campaign from non-rechargeable Cell-ID only device to rechargeable device with hybrid technologies (Cell-ID and GPS).
Where do you see your company or your company’s focus in 1-2 years?
We are hard at work, building iTraq platform that will be supporting hundreds of millions devices that will report their location from all over the globe.
We foresee that our platform will be getting not just location reports, but the information about the state of objects that has iTraq tags connected to them – their temperature, pressure, humidity etc…
If you could time travel back to day one of your startup and have 15min with your former self to communicate any lessons you’ve acquired with the intention of saving yourself mistakes and heartache, what would you tell yourself?
Mistakes and heartache are all part of the journey. Without them we wouldn’t have learned. They made us what we are today and helped us make the product better. So, no “cheating advice” to our past selves -just a bit of encouragement – Try harder and you will succeed.
Mistakes and heartache are all part of the journey. Without them we wouldn’t have learned.
Who has been the biggest influence on your life and work and why?
Vyacheslav Vorobiev – my first leader in archaeology expeditions – the person of encyclopedic knowledge and endless kindness
Bob Clough – my first manager at Microsoft – who showed my the art of asking questions
Steve Ballmer – Microsoft President – the man of tremendous energy and passion, who keeps going strong through wins and failures.
Any tips for aspiring entrepreneurs on how to facilitate a successful financing campaign?
Do not compromise on simplicity and aesthetics – make it simple, make it beautiful, make sure people love it.
What do you see as the biggest advancement in your technology sector over the next 5-10 years?
Internet connection will be available everywhere. This will enable global connectivity at low cost.
What do you see as the biggest risk in your technology sector over the next 5-10 years?
The risk is that the companies that are working on this solution today will fail to cooperate and global internet will remain fragmented and overpriced.