With 2017 already behind our back, we’ve decided to take a minute and reflect on what an amazing year it has been! Sure, 2017 brought a lot of challenges, but at the end of the day, we’ve managed to achieve some pretty great things that we are more than happy about. Here are the five bee-utiful things that happened to Bee Smart Technologies in 2017 and that we’re very proud of.
- We’ve launched our products on the market
After more than 3 years of research, prototyping and iterations, we were finally able to start selling our Beebot and our HiHive to clients and beta testers. In April, we sold our first units in Bulgaria and in June we made our first international sale – a Beebot went all the way to Israel. Today, we have clients on 4 continents and we are planning on further expanding our markets.
- We’ve partnered with the University of Western Australia
In August, we announced our partnership with the University of Western Australia and its Cooperative Research Centre for Honey Bee Products. The research project aims at increasing the value of the Australian honey bee products and at promoting the industry by inviting and training new professionals. Starting January 2018, the CRC will be using Bee Smart Technologies’ proprietary remote honey bee monitoring solutions to help evaluate beehive sites for quality of the surrounding cultures and impact on the health of the bees. We honestly can’t wait to see the first results!
- We’ve helped preventing the spreading of American foulbrood in Australia
American foulbrood is one of the most widespread and the most destructive of the honey bee brood diseases. It can infect the strongest to the weakest colony in an apiary and it’s deadly for the brood. One of our Australian customers noticed abnormalities in the reports he was receiving from his Beebot and when he went to check his hive out, he detected the presence of ABF. Being a remote land, Australia is the last safe haven where the disease hasn’t spread yet, so beekeepers are required by law to burn down the infected hives. This resulted in the first ever destroyed Beebot and as oddly as this may sound, we couldn’t be happier about it – after all we stopped a nasty disease from spreading!
- We’ve got international recognition
What a great award season it has been! In September, we were awarded Best IoT Startup in the National Round of the Central European Startup Awards – the biggest no-pitch competition for startups from Central and Eastern Europe. The competition happens in four phases – from nominations throughout voting for both national and regional winners to ultimately joining the Global Startup Awards. Winning the national round qualified us for the big Regional Finale in November, where we met great competitors from 9 other countries and ultimately, went home with the Best IoT Startup Award.
In October, we were selected as finalist of the Global Startup Challenge of the Hello Tomorrow Summit in Paris, where we had the opportunity to pitch in the Food & Agriculture track along with 6 other great projects from all around the world. We took part in another competition during the Summit – the IEEE N3XT Stars. The IEEE N3XT™ program is dedicated to the startup and investment community where technology entrepreneurs come together for in-person networking, inspiration, and learning how to turn ideas into opportunities. After a series of interviews with the expert jury, we were awarded the N3XT Star Title, which is a great recognition for us and an awesome opportunity to expand our networks and learn from the best.
- We’ve expanded our hive
Our team grew in 2017 and we’re so happy to have such great individuals and professionals on board! In March, Radostin joined the hive and took over the sales. In August, we welcomed Stephanie as our new Marketing and Community Manager. Our newest bee is Richard – an Australian customer who we’ve managed to convert into a valuable team member responsible for the growth of the company. We’re looking forward to an even more dynamic 2018 – we will be further extending our colony and project with about 15 new worker bees added to our hive.
With such a great year behind our back, we could only wish for even more adventures and happy occasions during the year ahead. Here’s to an awesome and productive 2018!