Vernon Tjon-Soei-Len of Bezos.ai.
Tell us about yourself?
I’m the CEO and Founder of Bezos.ai, a Fulfilment-as-a-Service platform that automates fulfilment and delivery for e-commerce sellers. Before Bezos.ai, I was the Director of Amazon Flex UK and part of the Senior Leadership Team of Amazon Logistics in the UK
What lessons has being an entrepreneur taught you?
Running your own business is like surfing. You have to find the waves, go to the waves and keep trying. Never give up, have perseverance, try things out and try again and again
If you could go back in time to when you first started your business, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Start earlier, try out new things quicker, don’t be afraid to fail. Things don’t have to be perfect, just course correct along the way
A lot of entrepreneurs find it difficult to balance their work and personal lives. How have you found that?
Yes, this has also been difficult for me. You have to know when you say “for today, it is enough”, which is very difficult as a founder and owner
Give us a bit of an insight into the influences behind the company?
E-commerce was growing very fast, but I realised how inefficient e-commerce logistics was and recognised the gap between what e-commerce sellers needed and what was available to them to solve their logistics problems.
What do you think is your magic sauce? What sets you apart from the competitors?
The team. Hire the best people out there. The people will make the difference. You need to hire smart people that have grit, that don’t give up. There are 3 categories of people: talkers, doers and thinkers. Make sure you hire the doers and thinkers.
How have you found sales so far? Do you have any lessons you could pass on to other founders in the same market as you just starting out?
We started out at events, networking our way to potential customers. From there on we tried many different channels
What is the biggest challenge you have faced so far in your business, and how did you overcome it?
Finding and hiring the right people. It is very easy to get exhausted interviewing candidates and just accept the best you met so far, instead of keeping absolute criteria, and hiring the right person for the job
What do you find are the advantages of operating your business in London?
Great location for talent, one of the best in the world with a high “talent density”
Are there any issues with having a London based business? Have you experienced these?
Cost of living is very high and as a result people are asking for high compensation
How has the higher than UK average cost of living impacted your ability to work and live in London and how has this also impacted your ability as an employer?
It has impacted us in terms of hiring. But we have a distributed team that can live anywhere in the UK or other parts of the world as long as they are OK to working UK hours
If you had to relocate your business to another city in the UK, which one would it be and why?
Difficult to say as we are hybrid. But I’m a big fan of coastal cities that have a high talent density and are a train ride from London. So maybe Brighton?
How has BREXIT impacted your business (if at all)?
Yes, it had a negative impact on our business
What is your vision for your company in the next 5 years?
Delivery happiness to small and medium e-commerce sellers, by enabling them to save time and money
And finally, if people want to get involved and learn more about your business, how should they do that?
Go to www.bezos.ai and complete the form, you can find a lot of info on our website. Or email [email protected] to get more information
Follow Bezos.ai on Twitter or Linkedin.