Exclusive interview for SPINOFF.COM with Mr. Seven Wei, the Co-founder of Mesay, about an innovative and ultimate two-way AI translator Mesay 2.0 that provides the translation into 16 languages just in 2 seconds. This portable machine provides the translation that can be performed offline. The usage of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in translating can guarantee that 97% of the translations are accurate. It is a very light device, 0.1 pounds, that user can bring everywhere. Mesay 2.0 is a must-have for anyone who wants to travel to any country and be able to connect. The device helps with easier communication with a 'Make Friends' feature that allows users to communicate with another Mesay user. Furthermore, it also has loudspeakers that provide a good communication even in public places with extra noise. The main goal of this invention is to provide the ability to communicate without language borders in different socio-cultural environments.
SOC: Dear Mr. Wei, we are so grateful for your generosity this day in spending time speaking with us and sharing your insights about Mesay. We wоuld likе to learn morе abоut a vast expеrience of your acаdemic endeavours and your professional background.
Mr. Wei: Thank you. Mesay 2.0 provides communication much faster and easy way. Mesay supports offline operation, therefore, it’s capable to run normally even if there are no signals, which is totally different from any other translating APPs; for most of them are completely dependent on data traffic. Furthermore, it operates with 97% accuracy.
My specialization is a computer application. Also, I am good at intelligent speech recognition, speech translation, speech synthesis, etc.
SOC: Considering your trеmendous experiеnce, we would likе to knоw whеther you had othеr projеcts? Could you please share the story of their creation and success.
Mr. Wei: Once, I founded Culture Media, a 12-person team that has done a lot of successful cases; such as the very cool 3D projection show, the NBA superstar McGrady's visit to China, etc. I chose another industry 2 years ago. Smart; This is a new trend in the development of the world. My uncle, who is engaged in smart speaker products, told me that in order to do business, I should focus on this industry to be a leader in this field. He is a great leader and successful person. In 2010, his company's sales exceeded RMB 200 million and the product brand sales worldwide. It really encouraged me to build my career.
SOC: It is so interеsting to knоw mоre about the prоcess of your technology creation. Please tell on which stage of commercialization your technology currently is? Was your project funded by any state financing or grants? Has it already received any honors or awards?
Mr. Wei: R&D M1 and F1 products are 1.0 and 2.0 hardware products respectively, which are recognized and supported by consumers. The product was successfully launched on Kickstarter and Indiegogo crowdfunding platforms. We are an entrepreneurial technology company that needs funds, but we do not want to be controlled by capital because we have a very big vision: to break language barriers and make cross-language communication enjoyable.
SOC: In the formation of every scientific spinoff, one of the most important keys to success is the team. For many potential investors, the management team is the most important element in deciding whether to invest in it or not. Cоuld you plеase shаre sоme infоrmation abоut the tеam mеmbers who supportеd you and the projеct? What are the key additions to the team needed in the short term?
Mr. Wei: Other founders of Mesay are Ms. Landy Chen, Mr. Lin gong Yi, Mr. Aron Chen.
SOC: It is not a secret that the development of a new technology and its subsequent commercialization presupposes some problem and addresses unmet needs. Respectively, what problem did you intend to solve by creating your technology? What results did you plan to achieve?
Mr. Wei: We would like to break the language barrier. The device can be used not only during the traveling or business trips. Let the world become a real global village, where you can share and exchange local culture in your native language and experience local life. If people all over the world speak the same language, the world will be different. Misunderstanding, suspicion, conflict, aggression, and war will be much less if people will understand each other.
SOC: The problem which you targeted to solve was actual before. Probably someone has already tried to solve it. Is it right? Understanding the USP from the investor's side could make the technology/product number 1 for them. What are the USP of your technology/product and fundamental difference from other technologies/products that tried to solve this problem before you?
Mr. Wei: We have the core technology. This is not the same as Mesay translator supports offline operation. The device can work if there is no signal. In addition, Mesay 2.0 features translation of 16 languages including Chinese, English, Cantonese, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Arabic, Russian, Spanish, Vietnamese, French, German, Portuguese, Dutch, Italian, and Greek.
SOC: We wonder what is the actual addressable market currently for your invention and what are the current competitors there? Could you please share with us the results of the market studies, if there are any? What might be the barriers to entry?
Mr. Wei: We will investigate and test all similar products on the market every day to ensure that our products are differentiated and unique. Furthermore, the team is committed to continuously improve the quality of the product, optimize the experience, and upgrading the product features, specifications or design.
SOC: Why in your opinion should your company have a high growth potential? Could you tell us all current industries and fields of your technology/product application and where do you think it could be successfully applied in the future?
Mr. Wei: The group of outbound tourists with 1.3 billion people worldwide is the consumer market. It is a very huge market as the device provides cross-cultural communication more convenient in a fast way. Mesay translator is very useful.
SOC: The potential investors will be curious whether you already have the first clients and signed contracts? What was the feedback from your partner's markers and customers?
Mr. Wei: Our first batch of customer feedback was about Mesay 1 (M1). They told that the sound is quiet, the screen is small, but the appearance is not bad. Therefore, we have developed a 2.0 translator with improved function and higher translation accuracy. Consumers really approved the second translator buying it.
SOC: We both know that for you and the investor it is crucial to reach positive cash flow as soon as possible. Certainly, the market scaling cannot be achieved without proper distributors network and clients. Please tell us about your criteria for partners selection and which markets are open for spinoff activity.
Mr. Wei: Money, resources, and networks help the company grow. These are my favorite partners.
SOC: It is very important to understand your particular vision about unique features of your company. Why do you consider the major market players might be interested in investing in a promotion of your technology/product on the addressable market?
Mr. Wei: Smart voice translation, which is part of the artificial intelligence world, is one of the most innovative fields. Therefore, investors will take the best opportunity to invest in the most passionate and energetic companies. Mesay 2.0, a portable and upgraded AI two-way translator device, allows simultaneous translation between 16 languages, taking just 2 seconds.
SOC: Now we would like to refer to the next very crucial and we would even say essential aspect for spinoff companies’ as the strategy of R&D, production, distribution, and marketing processes. Do you have your own unique strategy?
Mr. Wei: To occupy the global market share, this is the company's secret.
SOC: How do you determine the market for your product/technology and estimate its volume and dynamics? What is your potential share of the market? What is the market cap that your company can reach its peak development and why? How long might this process take?
Mr. Wei: The global translation market has a share of $53 billion. I think our goal is at least 10%. This process can take about 10 years. I think we are able to achieve it.
SOC: For spinoff companies, their intellectual property is a key to success. The investors pay particular attention to it. What key intellectual property does your company have (patents, patents pending, copyrights, trade secrets, trademarks, domain names)?
Mr. Wei: Yes, it is. As we have the core technology, we need to protect it. We have MESAY trademark, appearance patent, and software copyright.
SOC: The investors will want to get a clear picture of how many rounds of investments have you completed? Are you seeking for the investments at the moment? What is the volume and time limits? What milestones will the financing get you to? What did you plan to use the invested funds for?
Mr. Wei: We are looking for 5 million US dollars, which will mainly devote to the research and development of company technology.
SOC: Could you please describe your ideal investor or partner? What aspects are important for you, for instance, is it experience, country, the amount of own private capital or maybe some personal qualities?
Mr. Wei: Consistent with our company's values. Currently, we also select the general agent of each country as a partner. MESAY will fully support it. With absolute advantages in price and protection in the market, it will also provide comprehensive marketing videos and marketing materials.
SOC: And the last question, could you specify the most convenient way you would like to receive inquiries from potential investors? Should it be by e-mail or personal phone call?
We would like to express gratitude for the time you have dedicated to this interview. SPINOFF.COM will observe the development of your spinoff with great pleasure and interest. Also, we are thankful for providing all the necessary materials and we are pleased to forward the information on Mesay to all potential investors.