The Story of Zanthion – Chapter 3 – Zanthion In The Future

Startup Chapter 3 – Zanthion In The Future

 

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Of course, we cannot predict the future.  What we can do is tell you how Zanthion is making a better future, and why.  Before that, it is very important to understand that we here at Zanthion believe that how you treat your old and your young are the key indicators of the quality of life in your society.  In our opinion, the quality of life in American society is dismal and reprehensible. It is not that people don’t work hard or have good intentions, it is that they have been misled by advertising, in all forms, to believe that what is important to them makes for a better world.  Just as the magicians selling snake oil did hundreds of years ago, governments and businesses have done today, distracting us all, while taking our money for entertainment. An illusionist and magician live and die on focusing your attention on the moment and making you ignore the process that is your claim to a better future.

The quality of our lives and the lives of those around us does not depend on entertaining ourselves but on how we treat ourselves and those around us.  We must arm for war but be generous of spirit. We must live in the here and now, but plan for the future. Most of all, we must show appreciation and thanks to those who have given, and those who will sustain, our old and our young.  Zanthion was formed to create a better future by integrating seniors back into our economy and our lives. We believe that seniors bring with them perspective, the quality that knocks the edges off short term thinking societies and polishes the gem of existence for a fruitful future.  This quality can be easily seen in any society that practices filial piety where age and wisdom are respected for what they are, the long term investment of themselves to better the future for all.

In western cultures, accomplishment and success are often equated with money and power.  This is the natural consequence of capitalism and is not necessarily a bad thing. It does come with unintended consequences.  Some of those consequences could not have been foreseen or even if they were foreseen were not avoided. In America, vast swaths of our country have zoning laws that isolate our seniors by placing stores and convenience a fair distance from where our seniors live.  As we age our eyesight diminishes and we eventually lose our ability to drive safely isolating us even with access to crowdsourced transportation services. There is an unintended consequence that comes with a lack of social meeting places and the increased level of difficulty in getting to public places.  The unintended consequences are lack of participation, lack of familiarity, loss of comfort, loneliness, and sometimes abject fear on the part of seniors.

With the advent of social policy changes in the 60s distribution of income from the young to the old shifted to the distribution of income from the young to the old and the troubled.  This realignment of income distribution in conjunction with two working adults per household, the father and the mother, left less money in the coffers for distribution to the old and isolated seniors through the lack of companionship that was available before World War II.  It is, in fact, the perfect storm because not only are seniors isolated, medical science has increased their longevity while diminishing their capabilities with fewer resources available to serve them. Without change, seniors will starve in their homes in the thousands in the years to come.

Of course, seniors will not die of starvation in their homes because companies like Zanthion will deliver just in time services to them.  We have a prioritized list of the current and future needs of seniors aging at home and in care facilities. Our list is all-inclusive taking into account demographic shifts in workers and seniors and includes the impact of science that is extending senior’s lives and augmenting senior capabilities.

Zanthion is an open architected platform as a service designed to measure, predict, and deliver the highest quality, lowest cost service to the people who deserve it the most, seniors. We source sensors of all kinds; motion sensors, light sensors, open sensors, temperature sensors, water sensors, gas sensors, smoke sensors, bed exit sensors, heart rate sensors, oxygen sensors, and a future of joint and protein sensors that determine a person’s internal and environmental health.  

We can provide data to support if a senior may have an infection, is lost or wandering, has cognitive issues, is sleeping well, is frustrated, is lonely, or needs help. We notify the people and services best suited to help resolve whatever needs seniors may have, whether it be family and friends, medical services, or community members willing to work for or assist in helping them with a shower or delivering groceries.

That is not the full extent of what we do. We have sophisticated analytics that look at communities as a whole and measure their performance against each other in terms of response times, arrival times and resolution times. Every answered or automated request can have a comprehensive assessment associated with the event that correlates conditions with the cause. We know the power of the human in the AI confirmation and use human brilliance to confirm and defy expectations.

Zanthion is the future!

 

The Story of Zanthion – Chapter 2 – In The Beginning

Startup Chapter 2 – Chimera IoT In The Beginning

 

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Years ago now, in 2014, a senior engineer at Sun Edison had an idea on how to use high bandwidth messaging for IoT and wanted to start a company called Chimera IoT.  He approached Philip Regenie the current CEO of Zanthion and asked him if he would help him start the business. He had already contacted Ken Foster of Momenta Partners and arranged a meeting in Palo Alto to discuss his idea and the IoT potential of messaging.  Ken Foster told them that there were no legs in messaging. This was before Slack whose valuation currently stands at $7.1 Billion.  The core team dropped its focus on messaging and started focusing on IoT.

Lesson Number 1 – Never listen to investors or know-it-alls.  What they look for is who is already doing it and how.

While working for Sun Edison Phil had proposed they use used phones for gateways in the field with automatic failover from one phone to another.  He recommended this because you could purchase robust used Android phones for $29.95 with a lot of processing power, built-in cellular, WiFi, and BLE, all functions being designed into the new Sun Edison Gateway selling for $119.95.  With Android Play Store Sun Edison could leverage their provisioning and dispositioning of devices in the field making it less expensive to maintain their systems.

Lesson Number 2 – Look for low-cost open source solutions that leverage a huge ecosystem of R&D with a known distribution channel.

Sun Edison didn’t take this advice but Chimera IoT did and decided it should be a core principle for all their future development.  They went looking for the best Android BLE engineers in the business and acquired as their partner Steven Rudenko who is sometimes CTO and always the Director of Software Development for Zanthion.

While working at Sun Edison, Phil was set with the task of optimizing the relationship between R&D and the enterprise control room.  After a short week of analysis, it became obvious that the first thing that must be done is to measure the performance of the control room and of the service being provided to it in order to support their requirements.  Those measurements were an instant black eye for both the operations center and the R&D team supporting them. The operations center delivered poorly defined specifications for their needs to the R&D team and the R&D team wrote software that was ill-aligned with customer care objectives.  In fact, customer satisfaction relied on a broken paradigm of operation center attendants looking at huge displays of performance, analyzing hierarchical alarms, dissecting problems on remote gateways, and making calls to roll trucks to fix issues in remote solar fields regardless of the cost of the truck roll and what was fixed in the field.

Lesson Number 3 – Understand what are the system problems and measure everything related to them.

Phil suggested that they do economic analysis on the prioritization for the customer based on the total revenue generated for Sun Edison and total expected future revenue and the cost of revenue being lost to the companies with equipment and communication failures.  He also suggested that with this data in hand you could roll trucks automatically with routing software to optimize their utilization.

Lesson Number 4 –  People’s time is your most valuable commodity.  Use it wisely and automate everything for just in time delivery that you can.

These ideas were not adopted by Sun Edison but were built into the product design for Zanthion.  It is, in fact, where the notion of crowdsourcing responses came from. Zanthion made it a priority to automatically notify the nearest stakeholders to a seniors problem who have compassion for that individual.  Phil had learned that for seniors when there were disastrous events such as falls or sickness one of the most negatively impactful causes for future health was the length of time to first touch by someone that is connected to the senior.

Phil has worked in technology for over 35 years and in that time been a part of quality control initiatives for Honeywell, Intel, UBS, AT&T, and medical clinics.  Quality control for all of them required some of the same easily performed basic principles:

  1. Measure the qualities that determine the effectiveness of a system
  2. Have a process for identifying root causes
  3. Identify root causes
  4. Measure the components in the system considered to be a part of the root cause
  5. Prioritize issues by corporate values
  6. Decide on an effective method for fixing the top issue
  7. Implement the method
  8. Measure the components, resource usage, and system
  9. Predict future issues
  10. Go back to step 1
Lesson Number 5 –  Design into every product quality control, root cause analysis, and predictive analytics.

The technical initiatives of collecting data from sensors, ensuring quality data, and transporting the data were achieved in a relatively short time by the team.  It was found out years later that the engineer who had started the company had stolen the messaging code off a web site and although he claimed origination the code was 95% completed when he downloaded it.

Fortunately for Chimera IoT, his wife got involved in the business by intercepting his phone calls and demanded that he leave the company and get 10% of the stock after just 3 months of work.  The team was devastated but saved from an ineffective CTO with integrity issues running a future corporation. Phil doesn’t like to quit on anything when it gets hard so he doubled down and started fishing for employees.

There is a reason Sun Edison went bankrupt, they suffered from financial and technical corruption.  Phil knew about the financial corruption but it took him a year and a half to understand what technical corruption is.  He learned this lesson by hiring person after an ineffective person from Sun Edison for technical staff. To a person, they would take on a task and serve themselves while learning what they wanted to leverage their next job.  Not a single person except for Steven Rudenko in the first hires put the needs of the company in front of their own needs regardless of stock options or salary. In 2 years Chimera IoT went through 14 employees and 9 board members.  Although some of our board members were incredibly valuable like Paul Hoffman and Michael Wi, the majority were coasting on their name and provided no actual value to Chimera IoT. They were more than happy to take stock but unwilling to work for what they were paid.

Lesson Number 6 –  People invest in an idea equal to the amount of skin they have in the game.  Many are more than willing to take something and give nothing.

During the formidable period of Chimera IoT Philip’s mother was dying.  She had been diagnosed with congestive heart failure when she was 89 years old before Phil moved to California and took the job with Sun Edison.  In fact, the reason he moved to California was to take care of his mother. It turned out she took more care of him, but that is another story. Phil’s mom took the path into old age that many will take.  When her eyesight started going she stopped driving. As she aged she fell occasionally which made her walk less frequently. As the cycle continued Phil heard the phrase often, “I feel like a bird on a perch.”  His mother, like so many seniors, was trapped on her couch waiting for input from the world, her remote in hand, the TV blaring, living in the malaise of age. The rest of us go on with our lives but for seniors, they wait for the warm hand to open the cage door and reach in for that moment of care.

Like so many others with aging parents, Phil found his mom on the floor, with her emergency pendant pinned beneath her body when he got up in the morning to get ready for work.  She had been in her bedroom on the floor for over 8 hours. Phil had gone to bed after kissing her goodnight and watched TV and falling asleep.  He never heard her call for help.  These incidents, the incidents that happen in senior’s lives that steal their faith in themselves and strip them of dignity, can be overcome with technology and social process.

That is the goal of Zanthion, to put dignity in the lives of senior’s and their family till the day they die.

Lesson Number 7 –  We will all grow old and die someday.  Let’s make the trip enjoyable.

 

Philip Regenie – Founder and CEO – May 28, 2019

https://www.zanthion.com/products/

 

Chapter 3 – coming June 4th…

Chapter 1 – Zanthion Today

 

The Story of Zanthion – Chapter 1 – Today

Startup Chapter 1 – Zanthion Today

 

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We have decided to chronicle our journey as a startup so that others can benefit from the lessons we have learned.  Our journey has been filled with joy and some disappointment. This is our story. Chapter 1 is about where we are today and why.

Today, Zanthion is poised for launch within the next 30 days to enter the senior quality of life predictive analytics market with healthcare predictive analytics having a CAGR of 29.3% and a total market value of 1.48 billion.  Zanthion’s main emphasis for the first year is to limit falls and sepsis through predictive analytics with a combined market value of 14.39 billion by 2025.

Our recent validation as a company has come in many forms the first of which was the acquisition of a new incredibly gifted COO (J), with 25 years experience in medical technology and senior care.  He inquired about the company 3 months ago and joined the next day. His input has congealed 4 ½ years of effort and the technical foundation into a machine ready for market.

Shortly after J joined, inquiries started coming in from companies seeking to pivot home alarm companies into senior citizen-oriented quality of life companies, staffing agencies for senior care facilities, and international companies asking for platforms to support their home health agency just in time delivery of service.  We even had television personalities calling us for a home shopping network.

Some of those calls were calls from people and companies seeking to leverage our hard work with what they believed was a differentiator in the marketplace.  One such company felt that we should allocate significant Zanthion stock and strike a partnership because they had established baseline measurements for the health signs that indicate frailty and [soon to be] falls.  Of course, that data is easily available through academic and industry research papers and a portion of your company does not need to be relinquished to acquire it. Furthermore, sensor-based and habit-based artificial intelligence is not reliant on a baseline.  Those same companies pitched us on their existing call center as a deal breaker. Those, too, are easily purchased and set up in our modern world.

An alarm company called us and asked us if we could provide support for their already existing pendant and home alarm sensors which used GPRS, phone technology, to handle all alarms.  We indicated that we could do that but it would require at least a half of work or 3 people 2 months at $125k. For that price he wanted us to provide our backbone provisioning, maintenance, analytics, and responder products for $1 a month per subscription and tried to negotiate the $125k down to $36k.  This kind of bartering is counterproductive for a small company.

Because we suddenly were exhibiting high demand for our platform J and I decided we needed to augment our 5 man team with a new CTO.  We placed a job posting on Indeed.com outlining our exact needs, our current ability to pay, and the company status. We received 63 applicants many from mainstream corporate America with prior CTO and business owner titles.  We asked CTO applicants to take the indeed Logic and Critical Thinking exam and received expert qualifications on 2 of 63 applicants. This was extremely disappointing as we expected a much better showing logically from CTO candidates.

These cases are examples of growing pains and the disappointments that are part of a growing company.  What we learned from them was how to quickly differentiate the real from the unreal. Being able to differentiate the real from the unreal, the opportunity from the misdirection, reasonable funding vs unreasonable funding, valid functions vs invalid functions, and on and on is what ends up being the most important part of what startup leaders to.  We avoid spinning our wheels as much as possible.

We are extremely confident in our products ability to provide value to a tremendous community of seniors and their families with watches that detect falls and notify others of wandering and a complete fixed BLE sensor line integrated with our wearable technology.  Today, we applied for loans for $250,000 in order to purchase inventory to package and sell into the marketplace. Every company worth their salt reaches the point where they need revenue to get loans and loans to get revenue. This is where most startups take venture capital.  They seek venture capital because they have been churning in the chicken and the egg scenario long enough where they are losing the market opportunity and they know that if they do not act they will lose their market. We are fortunate. Our market is considerable and there are still lenders who understand the value of our market and it’s potential.  When finance companies take the chance on companies like Zanthion they are leveraging a small loan into hundreds of millions of dollars of future financing. It is a smart move. Soon we will launch the most comprehensive senior quality of life product in the market today enhancing the quality of life for millions of families in the years to come.  We are thankful to everyone that has helped us make this happen.

Philip Regenie – Founder and CEO – May 20, 2019

https://www.zanthion.com/products/

 

Chapter 2 – coming May 27th