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Interview Series: Recapping 2022 & What to Look Forward to in 2023
In the third interview of the series, Ben Landen, VP of Business Development, sits down with North Equities to recap 2022 and what's to come in the new year. Here we learn that Cyngn was ahead of schedule in 2022 in terms of deployments, partnerships, and recruiting, discuss our recent collaboration announcement with Jtec Industries, and talk 2023 goals.
Thank you everybody,for joining us back here at Cyngn's Channel in 2023. We're sitting here once again with Vice President of Business Development at Cyngn, Mr. Ben Landen.
Ben, how are you doing? I haven't seen you all year.
I know, I'm doing well. Starting off the new year. I hope you're doing well, too.
Yeah, doing very well. And I'm curious. So let's put a wrap on 2022 now that it's in the rear view. How do you feel year went as a whole? And how do you think it poised, you guys, for 2023?
This is something that practically anytime anybody hears me present over the last few months, I've been emphasizing — we set out goals for 2022, and we were ahead of those goals in multiple dimensions.
Now, those are that we were going to bring one vehicle to commercial readiness, which we did with the stockchaser. We didn't plan to begin working on a second vehicle yet, but we had a great opportunity with a customer on a commercial contract to begin developing our DriveMod tech stack for electric forklifts and repurposing it for electric forklifts, which we announced. So we were ahead in that regard.
We were targeting just running our vehicles at one site in 2022. We ended up at multiple sites, with multiple different beta customers, which is what brought us into this state of readiness now to really scale up the deployments of that commercially ready stockchaser.
And the third piece, which is a little bit more corporate for us, let's say, is that the key to our success is our ability to hire and to hire great talent. And we did a great job in that as well. We grew our team primarily in engineering and the people who are building the solutions that get out in front of our customers and continue to get better.
So we were ahead of goals in all three of those dimensions to make it all in all, a successful 2022
Yeah. Wonderful. And it sounds like based on that, you guys are kicking down the door here. January is not even halfway over and you're already going strong. Walk us through you guys have been so far this year.
Yeah, we just made an announcement about us collaborating with the industrial cart supplier and material handling solutions company, Jtec Industries. That's exciting. They're headquartered in the Midwest, where a lot of the center of math of our customer base is — that's where a ton of U.S. manufacturing happens. It's where we see a lot of opportunity and really a need, especially with the labor shortages that are ongoing.
So I think it's a very natural partnership where our vehicles oftentimes need to tow heavy things behind them. Jtech is a leader in creating great solutions, great carts for that, towing, and supporting systems to help automate other elements of moving those materials around.
And then, you know, the flip side of that is true too. When they're engaging with customers who need to move things and do it with vehicles and engage them for their carts, we now have that opportunity to be plugged in as one who can do that without a person sitting on the vehicle that needs to pull the cargo around. So I think it's a really great partnership, kind of symbiotic relationship that I think is going to help us just reach more and more customers.
For sure, and this is kind of like exactly what you guys were talking about doing. And it does seem like you're well-poised to knock out a lot more of these in the future. And I know you can't share too much about what the plans are for 2023 or what's directly upcoming, but what can you share? What can people expect for the rest of this year?
Our focus is definitely about scale of that stockchaser, which I mentioned is the commercially ready vehicle under our Enterprise Autonomy Suite, our EAS product offering. So within that, that's kind of the big umbrella term that captures the entire soup-to-nut solution that a customer gets by bringing Cyngn in. Which means vehicles that drive themselves, software and interfaces, simple things that let you control these complex vehicles, lets you get data off them. But you don't have to be a trained technician or an engineer. You're getting kind of that Apple feel, like Apple app feel for running these complicated vehicles.
So our focus is now that the stockchaser is ready to get as many of those placed out in the field as possible with customers. So going into sales mode there. And then bringing up that next vehicle. We've been working on the electric forklift, hoping to be able to share some more news on it publicly soon. But that's one that is really exciting because it's such a ubiquitous vehicle in the material handling space. Everybody uses forklifts. It can automate soup to nuts without needing a person in the loop because it's got the forks, it can actually pick things up off the ground, off of shelves, off of conveyor belts. And so that's going to be a really exciting next vehicle that we hope to have commercially ready soon.
Perfect. Yeah, it really sounds like the year has been off to a really strong start and there's a lot more coming. So everybody please stay tuned and let us know if you have any questions.
But Ben, thank you so much again for coming on. It's great seeing you this year. Do you have any closing words before we go?
I think it's a tricky time for all of us with the current market conditions, with the labor situation, we're seeing layoffs across the board, especially at large tech companies. I think we're in a position where we know how large the opportunity is in front of us. A lot of the, let's call it the hardships, that are happening around us in big tech are somewhat of an opportunity to us, for us.
And we're seeing, keep looking out for these the partnership opportunities that we're bringing. We're engaging with more and more OEMs of these different autonomous vehicles to get our software moving their vehicles autonomously, bringing more channels into our go-to-market efforts, and between all of those things, we're hoping for a big 2023.
Perfect. Well, Ben, again, great seeing you, and please enjoy the rest of your day.