For automed, 2016 was an incredible year. From the official launch in February to today, we’ve been working non-stop. We believed that we had a product that would add incredible value to livestock producers. But until you launch and get the system up and running on commercial farms, there’s always some doubt. Thankfully, 2016 removed that doubt. The response, interest and the adoption of the automed platform has been incredible. Our modest expectations for the first year were blown out of the water. As the year draws to a close, we want you to join us in looking back at the special moments that contributed to a successful year.
The USA Division
If you were following automed from the beginning you’d know that our global strategy was split between starting in the USA and the EU, depending on who would jump first. In late 2015 we were initially offered the opportunity to carry out U.S. trials in mid-2016 within the beef industry. However, these discussions fell short, and nothing came out of it.
Our move into the U.S. came thanks to our appearance at the World Pork Expo. Despite having little more than a glorified lemonade stand (a TV, table, some business cards and a couple of automed devices) the response was overwhelming. We met with three-quarters of the top 25 pork producers in the USA, plus some overseas companies from South Korea and China. We also received a positive response from the Pharmaceutical companies who saw massive benefits in the system.
The expo wasn’t just a good success in terms of exposure, it led to us signing up 2 of the top 25 pork producers as customers. This necessitated serious discussion with the industry about how automed needed a U.S. presence as soon as possible. automed CEO, David Edwards, being who is said “yep lets do it.” And so automed USA was born.
Todd Sturdy from Iowa joined automed and headed up the the market development of automed USA. Todd has been instrumental in taking automed USA from strength to strength as the company moved into the beef, pork and dairy industries.
automed USA is a great example of being reactive to market needs. The U.S. automed team has already done great work, and we look forward to doing even better work in 2017.
Speaking of the automed team, with our launch and rapid expansion we needed to make our first staff hires. It’s important to us that we have the right people representing automed, individuals who believe in our mission and have the talent to push the company forward.
In May the company had only two full-time employees (David and Samira) and casual contractors of around ten people. At the end of 2016, we now have five full-time staff, three part-time interns, and just over 15 part-time contractors. This also led to a complete restructure of our financial management team with the introduction of dedicated CFO and accountant manager.
We’ve brought on board people in marketing, sales, and support, both in Australia and the U.S. We are delighted with the performance of the team so far and look forward to growing our family in the years to come. We project to triple our team within the next 12 months across Australia and the USA.
With our 2017 strategy in play, you will see the automed team grow not just within Australia but globally to cover all aspects of the business and further expand the automed product.
Beginning with the Pan Pacific Pork Expo in May, 2016 was our introduction to the world of expos. From World Pork Expo to World Dairy Expo, from Beefex to Lambex here in Australia, we travelled the world to spread the word of automed.
The thrill of meeting people who hadn’t heard of our product, or people who had heard about it but were skeptical, cannot be overstated. Even at the most chaotic of times, we loved the opportunity to talk about problems with livestock medication and the solutions that we offer.
2017 is set to be an even bigger year of expos, with improvements to our booth and presentation materials that should make for an even more enjoyable experience for visitors.
In addition to our Beefex award for innovation in beef, winning two regional iAwards for Industrial & Primary Industries and Mobile Innovation of the Year was an unexpected honour. When we won again on the national stage and also took home the award for Victorian Government Inspiration of the Year – we were genuinely surprised.
To then cap off the year by representing Australia at the Asia Pacific ICT Alliance Awards and winning the gold for Industry Application was just a dream come true and one of the best nights of our lives.
We’ve always seen automed as a solution for the global livestock market. Whether you run a beef feedlot in Iowa or a piggery in Seoul, there is value to be gained by adopting the automed platform.
Our original intention was to build the business primarily in Australia before looking abroad, but the strongest interest came from overseas first. This meant we had no choice but to rack up the air miles in 2016. We went to Netherlands, Denmark, USA, and Taiwan, just to name a few.
2017 is unlikely to be any different, with plans to spend more time in the USA and EU already on the cards. Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with our movements. If we’re coming to your town and are interested in automed, be sure to drop us a line.
Combined with our USA breakthroughs, we also saw our first success within the Australian market. We now have Australian customers in dairy, beef, sheep and pork.
automed is now entering into new markets such as South Korea and we are setting our sights on making an impact in the EU market in 2017.
The Integration Partnerships
For automed to reach its full potential, it needs to offer as much value as possible while also being easy to implement into livestock production operations. To that end, automed was developed with an open API. Not having a closed system means that we can integrate automed into other systems, and vice versa.
Whether automed is adding value to another product, or a farm tool is enhancing automed, we want as much integration as possible. In 2016 we have already made great strides in this regard. We have over 20 integration partnerships, including Tru-Test and Gallagher, which have already announced.
In the new year, we will be detailing more partnerships so stay tuned for some exciting announcements.
Goodbye, automed 2016. Hello, automed 2017.
We want to thank everyone that has been following our journey in 2016. Know that we are committed to out-doing ourselves in 2017 and helping to make the livestock industry even more productive and effective than it already is.
A very merry Christmas and a happy new year to our customers, suppliers, and every company and individual that has supported us along the way.
See you in 2017.