Six strollers on the stairs of the villa on the outskirts of Johannstadt in Dresden reveal: a fertile home. There are also ingenious ideas born, although a software company is not suspected among the 20-plus names on the doorbell board that is causing a sensation with a new kind of digital presentation medium. With him, 3D Interaction Technologies GmbH hidden is on its way to becoming a true hidden champion. And his bosses, who provide opportunities in the crisis, have good cards as “Entrepreneur of the year from Saxony”. The competition kicks off this Friday in its sixteenth season.
Heads and co-owners Henry Wojcik and Ingolf Seifert prepared a presentation in the 240 square meter office on the first floor. Animated 3D video of a packaging machine runs on the monitor. And Stephen Rahn, director of sales, who moved from the home office, explains the world first. He intervenes in a scene and varies the working speed of the machine. He stops, turns, dismantles, moves individual parts, enlarges, shows his inner workings with an X-ray view. He assembles the parts, the machine keeps running.
Similarly, it demonstrates the complex baggage logistics of an airport, makes the electricity budget of a single-family home understandable, and presents the product range of Dresden Solarwatt customer, a PV system provider. Datasheets and animations showing how individual modules work are stored in buttons that can be displayed. “We can integrate all media, whether it’s a 3,000-year-old calligraphic tablet or 3D video,” says sales manager Rahn. Holographic projections are also possible. Only computing power sets limits.
“It has a scenic presentation with all the advantages of a video and can tell the story of a product without having to be there,” explains the head of the company, Wojcik. “You can put them on the Internet or present them at trade shows. Unlike still-stream videos, interaction opportunities like those offered by computer game technology are also exploited. The reference list now includes 75 users across the world. world, almost exclusively from the machine and machine industry Plant Builder.
“A video alone leaves questions unanswered and is old school,” says Henry Wojcik, who originally came from electrical engineering. The 40-year-old man looks like a teacher in a hand-sewn suit with a tie. In fact, the father of two did his doctorate at the Technical University of Dresden, where their paths crossed with Ingolf Seifert ten years ago. The two founded 3D-IT GmbH in 2013, raised over € 1 million in investor money, and brought Saxon and medium-sized investment firms on board as partners.
The former science journalist with three children is apparently the opposite of his partner in jeans and a wool jacket. The enthusiastic duo complement each other “although there is always friction.” Its 14 full-time employees, including ten programmers, have a background at the Technical University or the Dresden University of Technology and Economics. The team also includes two students and three members of the supervisory board, who also believe in the young company and its portfolio with their own funds.
“The Govie format we developed stands for Game Technology and Movie in One,” explains Seifert. Since you can directly answer a customer’s questions, it is ideal for marketing and sales. “Explaining is so easy without any other means,” he enthuses. Especially in the Corona period, since field workers can barely see customers, it is a profitable replacement. “You can schedule appointments online with little effort, as if you were sitting together with the machine close at hand.”
The revolutionary idea was born in 2013. “A customer wanted an animation of a product,” reports Seifert. The video did well at trade shows, but the sales rep wanted to keep the thread of the conversation in hand without giving up the digital benefits. “We built a 3-D world with interaction for him, the other extreme. But the salesperson was overwhelmed by talking and interacting with customers at the same time.” In the end, a guided mode was the answer: Govie was born. A great moment.
“But the real reinforcement is that we have developed a software with which you can create everything yourself without the need for plugins and very easily with videos, 3-D models, photos and texts at the Powerpoint level”, says Wojcik and explains: “My seven-year-old daughter used it to label a three-dimensional model of a strawberry in first grade and sent it to her classmates and teacher, including a baking recipe at the end. “
A hint of new potential? The medium is affordable and, above all, usable for everyone, said the head of the company. With the editor’s release in 2020, the final piece of the puzzle was added: machine builders could use their own CAD planning data. “We are proud to have managed to write this software in a country without a lot of venture capital and beyond the giants of Silicon Valley,” says Wojcik.
“We work as a service provider in the project business, and we have a software division that the Govie Editor continues to develop,” says Seifert, highlighting the business areas with which the Dresden company has generated around 2.1 million euros in sales since 2018, as well as inputs for necessary research and development. of 830,000 euros generated.
“Thanks to Corona, we didn’t have an easy year either. Like many companies, we had to register short-time work,” admits Wojcik. The sales channels have been broken and the fairs have failed. The workforce is in the home office and meets daily online. Appropriate. The converted sales methodology is slowly paying off. The bosses are optimistic, things are improving, they say and make it clear: “We are no longer a start-up, we are a take-off!” And soon a hidden champion, not just because of the discreet buzzer sign. sz
You can see a cinematographic portrait of the company 3D Interaction Technologies this Friday at 7:00 p.m. in the Sachsenspiegel program of the MDR.
“The dream” for brilliant entrepreneurs
“Saxony Entrepreneur of the Year” is chosen for the sixteenth time.
The three major newspapers in the Free State and the MDR are participating in the competition.
The winner will receive “Die Träumende” by the Dresden sculptor Malgorzata Chodakowska from Poland. An eleven-member jury will decide who will receive the gold-plated bronze statue on May 7, 2021 at the transparent VW factory in Dresden.
The statue weighs 40 kilos, is 1.20 meters tall, has no challenge cup and therefore belongs to the winner.
Entrepreneurs can apply or be suggested until February 5.
Conditions of participation: at least ten employees, € 500,000 annual turnover, five years on the market, own shares of the company, most of which must be privately owned, company headquarters or branch in Saxony.
Award criteria: special business performance in 2020, for example, maintaining or creating jobs, learning, innovations, acquisitions, commitment to the region, successful crisis management.
The special category “FokusX” honors the best opportunity manager in the crown crisis. The prize: an advertising budget of € 60,000 for the “Sächsische Zeitung”, the “Leipziger Volkszeitung” and the “Freie Presse”.
Applicants for the Saxony Year Startup must have founded their company in the period 2016-19 and have a great business idea and a compelling business plan.
Depending on the situation in the corona pandemic, the finalists appear at the awards gala or on the Internet, the public decides. Media services worth € 60,000 are also available to this founding champion. (sir / sz)