Major Prominent Clients: Shell, ABB, TFMC, Henkel and BJ services
Headquarter In: Houston, Texas, USA
Founded in Year: 2012
Employees Headcount: 85
Your Tagline/Quote: Actions! Not just Insights
In Candid Conversation with TBF “Krishnan Raman” Co-founder & CEO, Flutura spoke about her professional journey. Below are highlights of the interview we conducted with Krishnan Raman:
Q. Brief us about Flutura journey of rich experience – origin, inception, early issues, success stories, and major milestones, to name a few.
Three of us—Srikanth Muralidhara, Derick Jose, and Krishnan Raman —were cruising along at our previous employment, doing templated stuff. But one day this question crept in: Are you an order-taker or an order-maker? Suddenly it didn’t seem so cool being order-takers. This idea instigated us to have our own platform to solve market inefficiencies in the underserved industries.
Companies all around were reaching a plateau of efficiency by deploying reliable automation. While they had large scale operations, equipment, and a wide customer base, very few of them had real-time insights into last mile operations across various business processes. This is where Flutura saw the next level of efficiency improvements. Flutura zeroed on providing “asset uptime” reliability and “operational excellence” as these areas were vastly underserved in the Energy, Manufacturing, and Engineering industries.
During the inception, we faced quite similar challenges as any startup would. But our learnings from these challenges were impeccable. The greatest moments of joy were when the customers placed their trust in us. Early in Flutura’s journey, we decided to have unflinching industry focus around Oil & Gas, Process Chemicals, and Heavy machinery. Based on early feedback from the customers we realised that our niche in the Industrial IOT a) Is an Underserved market b) Has a much more tangible ROI. We continued to build surgical solutions for operations, reliability, quality assurance and production optimization by socialising with early adopters. We understood our end users’ mental model, which helped us fine tune Cerebra’s features.
In the early days of the launch of Cerebra, we were gratified when Gartner recognized Flutura in Magic Quadrant for Industrial IoT, Forrester – Among the Top leading IIoT companies, Frost & Sullivan, Deloitte, CIO review, Mirror review many other analysts, media house, and consultant companies. In recent times we have won membership with Synerleap and ABB, recognized as Global leader by Bombardier, Top AI companies to watch in Oil & Gas by Abyss. We were invited by Adipec 2020 to showcase our thought leader led Gathering Systems Solution; the paper was later published by SPE.
Q. Brief us about the CEO/Founder of Flutura.
Krishnan, a pragmatic thought leader in Industry 4.0, has been honored as one of the “Bulls of Technology” in the USA, Germany, Japan, India, and is regularly invited to be the keynote speaker in International forums.
Derick has been in Business Intelligence for close to two decades. He is a thought leader and has an immense grasp of knowledge in Business Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Analytics space. His strong foundations in techno-business principles helps him to deliver the most complex solutions in the simplest forms. He is building an industrial AI consortium to help Indian startups overcome perception hurdles abroad.
Srikanth, for more than two and a half decades, has been a thought leader in the area of Analytics. a. He has incubated business analytics initiatives for large Fortune companies and has been part of building more than 400 transformational analytics solutions in his career.
Q. Kindly talk about the exclusive products or services offered by Flutura, How does it distinguish you from your competitors?
Flutura is a top rated AI company offering industrial IoT solutions with a vision to transform process- and asset-centric industries by assuring them of operational excellence, asset uptime reliability. Cerebra, Flutura’s flagship, provides unique insights into last mile issues in engineering operations for the Oil and Gas, Specialty Chemicals, Heavy Machinery Manufacturing, Automotive, and adjacent sectors.
- Cerebra Digital Assistants has diagnostics and prognostics modules for processes and assets.
- Cerebra Vision Intelligence, based on video analytics, has modules for quality inspection, safety violations, and other event detections.
- Engineer’s WorkBench equips industrial engineers with Operational and Engineering insights using data science without having to code.
Another aspect about Flutura is, we have a world class multi- disciplinary team of petroleum, mechanical, chemical, electrical and Data Science engineers who are shaping Cerebra with over 400+ features making it system centric. The domain-specific digital assistants are making the product comprehensive and reliable in the industry. Cerebra integrated physics, heuristics, and machine learning to drive business outcomes. Customers realize value in 90 days of deployment. The prediction accuracy is about 95-97% owing to the availability of good quality data.
Q. What is the vision and mission of Flutura?
Flutura’s vision is to unlock USD 1 billion of value to our customers and empower 100,000 electromechanical and chemical engineers globally by 2025. Flutura aims at expanding to adjacent industries and geographies while also releasing vertical-specific product suites to mitigate massive inefficiencies in the industries under purview.
Q. What is the present scenario of the AI sector? How are you contributing to making it better?
The race to become fully autonomous has sped up. Oil and Gas, Manufacturing, Automotive, and Engineering sectors are adopting AI solutions faster to accelerate the speed of daily operations, make informed decisions more consistent and reliable. Critical operations are being driven by new technology. All aspects such as health and safety, optimization of the complete value chain using premade AI platforms is getting picked up.
In the near future, field engineers will be able to take complex real time data and process it for taking decisions independently, in minutes. Flutura has already launched a product – Engineers’ WorkBench, like this and the revolution is closer than people think. Flutura is also making use of visual data for automated quality inspection, HSE compliance, and to avoid other inefficiencies detected by video/image sensors.
Q. What are the marketing strategies adopted by Flutura?
Flutura is dedicated to accelerating business with the advanced capabilities of the product suite. Partnering with companies that complement us, takes us to the right market. Flutura adopts a product led approach than a sale led. Customer centric approach and their trust in our product has certainly helped us land multiple fortune 500 companies. Flutura is building a community for industrial engineers to help them upskill in the data science field to become self-sufficient in their decision-making process for daily operations. Strategic initiative -expanding geography through partnerships, thought leader content creation, interest-specific lead nurturing campaigns, being a part of prestigious panel discussion, incubating futuristic ideas, community building, expanding into adjacent sectors – are addressing key challenges created by the divergence of physical, digital, and human worlds. The impact of the path we have taken is seen in Gartner Peer Insights Voice of Customer report where Flutura is ranked no.1 and the company is recognized by Gartner in the Magic Quadrant for the third consecutive year.
Q. How do you portray the future of Flutura in the next decade?
The pandemic has disrupted the plans of Flutura in a good way. The pandemic has expedited the planned events and has made Flutura achieve within this year, what was initially a long-term plan. This has helped the company thrive during these unprecedented times. Flutura has curated deep insights into critical trends in the industrial sector which will chart our future product investments and some exciting product launches over the next 5 years, which in turn will provide disproportionate competitive advantage to our customers.
Some of the critical trends we intend to intercept and disrupt are
- System level optimization to yield larger returns
- Accelerated investments into AI-driven autonomous operations at controlled costs
- Self-service tools to upskill the users & reducing latency in decision-making process
- Delivering technology with advanced safety features to attain Goal Zero
Q. With respect to your distinctive products and services, how have you helped bring positive developments in the AI sector?
Flutura has recently launched two new products –Engineer’s WorkBench and Vision Intelligence. In our experience, domain engineers’ hurdle was to analyze complex data, while data scientists could not draw domain-specific conclusions based on their analysis. Engineers’ Workbench helps domain engineers to analyze complex data by not having to code. It is a tool with a prebuilt comprehensive library that users may “drag and drop” while analyzing real-time field data. The product upskills the engineers and avoids their dependency on data scientists thus shortens the latency in the decision making process.
We have been relying on sensor data for more than half a decade. We now club the sensor data analysis with the insights drawn from visual data. Cerebra Vision uses video analytics for industrial operations for quality enhancement, productivity, efficiency, and safety. The technology is deployed to alert on identifying dubious events – safety non-compliance, oil spill, process anomalies, emotion detection, security breach, and more.
Cerebra Digital Assistants have been deployed across 200+ manufacturing lines, 500+ Oil and Gas wells, 200+ live rigs, 600+ frac pumps, 17+ compressors, mining plants and has created an overall value of USD 300mn+. We have specific use cases such as
- Automating root cause analysis
- Enabling dynamic operating environments for the field operators
- Predicting output quality, potential equipment downtime and performance degradations
- Predicting potential safety threats with the goal of avoiding events risking humans, and the environment (oil leakage, blow out, …)
Q. What advice would you give to the upcoming entrepreneurs and professionals?
In an era when technology trumps tradition, today’s entrepreneurs must develop skills that were unheard of in the past. Their flair for knowing technology must be as much as they do about business. Even if the ventures/start-ups are product-centric, at the nascent stages, the start-up should responsively build the product catering to the requests of the clients. The requirements of the client can become additional features of the product and thus a fool-proof technology that serves the particular sector in a comprehensive way. This will help strengthen the relationship as well as better the product helping them advance in the product roadmap. A balanced act is the key to success.
Q. What is the current industry scenario from your perspective?
The demand for AI is seen in every industry. The adoption rate of different industries is at a varying rate. There might be a tad delay in the adoption rate this year, 2020, but companies are seeing value accrual from AI at the enterprise level, and many are generating revenue and cost reductions at least at the function level.