Tech entrepreneurs launch assembly schedule software program – Grand Rapids Business Journal

(Watch for this story Monday morning on WZZM TV 13) Three Grand Rapids know-how entrepreneurs this summer time launched machine-learning-based assembly schedule software program within the midst of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic.

Grand Apps founders Chris Ake and Jon Butler, together with Kairos Digital founder Nathan Jean, launched Sidekick Ai shortly after COVID-19 grew to become a family identify within the United States. Ake mentioned he and his group had been engaged on the software program since early 2019, however mistakenly thought the coronavirus spelled the top for the fledgling platform.

“We launched our 1.0 version shortly after the lockdown, and I thought people wouldn’t use it, because in-person meetings were basically put on pause,” Ake mentioned. “I was wrong. More people are scheduling more meetings virtually, and Sidekick has seen a great adoption rate since our launch.”

As do business from home turns into extra outstanding, the software program has seen a big adoption improve for scheduling digital conferences.

Sidekick Ai is just not a digital assembly room, however reasonably a software program that schedules the conferences and works with platforms like Google Hangouts. Sidekick’s machine studying software program makes use of language processing to schedule conferences.

The software program is constructed to remove the annoyance of scheduling with back-and-forth comply with ups, making an attempt to coordinate schedules and all the things else that comes with the frustration of scheduling.

When customers obtain an e-mail request to satisfy, they will merely ahead the message to Sidekick, and the machine-learning software program then will ship the requestor a hyperlink to guide inside the person’s availability.

The software program at the moment has about 250 customers and has booked over 300 telephone, digital and in-person conferences up to now. Ake attributed the platform’s fast success to its viral nature. If one person books a gathering via Sidekick, then the platform is launched to different members within the conferences.

“You use it for one meeting, and other people in the meeting say, ‘hey, what is this? This looks cool,’” Ake mentioned.

Originally, Ake and Butler tapped into their very own community to get Sidekick off the bottom. The two based Grand Apps in 2011 and already have been nicely established within the native tech area.

“Luckily for us we’ve been in the business community in Grand Rapids for almost a decade now,” Ake mentioned. “Jon and I basically reached out to people we know, and we had a couple thousand people interested over a few weeks.”

The firm then in August closed a deal for Sidekick to be featured on AppSumo, providing a lifetime deal for AppSumo customers.

AppSumo is a worldwide on-line market for brand spanking new startup software program firms. The firm hosts about 1.5 million members consisting of software program firms and particular person customers who’re searching for offers on new software program and need to help startups.

Since the AppSumo launch, Sidekick has obtained suggestions from new customers across the globe, particularly within the U.Ok. the place customers needed compatibility with their very own time zone. The fast international adaptation has compelled the Sidekick group to adapt at a sooner tempo than they anticipated, Ake mentioned.

“We were like, ‘ah, we didn’t think we’d have to move that fast,’” Ake mentioned. “What we’re doing now is talking to a lot of people and find commonality and trends of their requests.”

Ake mentioned Sidekick Ai is among the few software program applications on the earth to at the moment use machine studying and language processing to schedule conferences. The group exported greater than 100,000 messages from Gmail via a bot to ensure that it to establish which emails have been about scheduling a gathering and which weren’t.

Users can go to and check out the app free for 30 days.


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