Interview with LightYX Co-Founder and CEO, Guy Benromano

Guy has over 14 years of experience in B2B Sales, Sales management & business development, with a  strong ability to build and drive business engagements, create customer relations on all levels and build engaged teams working toward common goals. He has a proven record in leading sales cycles  at all stages, from end users to C levels  and from small startups to Tier 1 Enterprises .

1. What is LightYX?

In a nutshell:

LightYX is an innovative startup in the construction-tech industry that has recently been chosen as one of the most promising Israeli startup in the construction-tech arena and one of the top 5 global startups in construction for 2019 (“Builtworld”, Germany) and has been recognized as one of the most promising projects in deep tech to date (“Hello tomorrow”, Paris). It was founded by 3 experienced engineers that have previously held senior roles in global technology companies.

LightYX is developing a unique robotic system that projects an Augmented Reality of construction blueprints using a laser onto any surface with an accuracy of millimeters. The system has the ability to highlight quality control issues without being intrusive to the workers on-site.

2. How did you come up with the idea for LightYX?

We were initially busy developing autonomous vehicle technology until we realized we wanted to lead a whole new category so we were looking for a traditional industry that is in the midst of a digital revolution and so we got into the construction industry. From the moment we decided to focus on construction we did market research and interviewed dozens of construction engineers and professionals who told us about the huge amount of mistakes there are on the site. We analyzed with them the factors and the existing solutions and then we thought of our unique idea

3. How did you get to where you are today with your company?

We started by hiring the best people. They make the big difference. We were working very hard and very lean with limited resources utilizing the maximum out of it and engaging very early with global customers and design partners.

But we were also very lucky that Autodesk (an American multinational software corporation that makes software services for the architecture, engineering and construction industries) decided to adopt us and integrate us into their STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM  where they gave us offices including all the facilities at no cost and helped us focus and also connected us to first international clients.

This is also the place to say a huge thank you to Ilai Rotbaein, CEO of Autodesk Israel and Nathanel Guetta, director of the Innovation Lab, for their great giving and ongoing support.

4. How did coronavirus impact your company and what lessons would you take from it?

Corona virus has slightly slowed us down since we froze all hirings that were planned, to extend our budget runway. Also, The airport closure prevented us from piloting overseas. But we decided to focus on what is under our control and focused on our R&D efforts and shifted the pilots to Israel.

The best lesson I learned is to always make sure you, as the CEO, have enough money in the bank, though I know that it is not always under one’s control.

5. What is the future of LightYX?

That you will have to ask god…but as far as things under our control, we still have significant milestones to cross but I can tell you now that if there is something Im sure about, after speaking with dozens of construction companies is that the need for our solution  is huge and any vertical construction site should have our technology. Its my responsibility to make sure that they will have “LightYX BeamerOne” on every single site.

6. What is the startup scene in Israel and how has that helped your company?

Much has been said about the startup scene in Israel. For us it is already quite natural. But when you think about it, it’s very convenient to think about the idea and know that in a few phone calls to friends you can already have meetings with a lot of venture capital funds and maybe even make a company out of it in a few months.

The feeling is that dreams are possible in Israel.

In the case of LightYX, because we invented a very complex and unique technology, we even received an innovation grant of $ 550,000 from the Israeli Innovation Authority, which supports deep-technological startups.
The Israeli Innovation Authority is part of the Israeli ecosystem and I do not think there are many countries that offer such a developed mechanism to entrepreneurs.

7. What advice would you give to young budding entrepreneurs?

Start with choosing the right Co-founders- sometimes it’s all about them. I chose my best friends. I had the privilege to befriend with 2 brilliant guys

Be prepared for a very difficult mental journey. There are more difficult moments than good moments but the good moments are worth all the difficulty in the world.

Talk to customers early on, tell them what you want to do, and if you get good feedback, keep going in full power even if people around you tell you you have no chance.

Meet with lots of investors, learn from their comments and implement them but do not let investment refusals break you as long as the clients want what you have and you believe in what you do.

Sometimes it seems that it is easier for everyone and only for you it is difficult. It just seems.

Read a lot of books on entrepreneurship and management. It will not give you experience but it will teach you from the experience of others. And the more you know, the fewer mistakes you will make

We would like to thank Guy for taking the time to speak with us.

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