Through AI-based route optimisation, Plotwise allows logistics operators to solve these complex mobility challenges, improving performance and ultimately creating a better customer experience.
“For me, the urban space, just looking outside, seeing people move, seeing goods being transported, all of that was just a fascinating subject. I realised there was huge potential in applying modern technology within that urban space.“I have an engineering and product background. I love technology but I also realised there’s a big gap between technology and actually applying it in society – crossing that gap, that’s what drives me and that’s something I really love to do.
Michel also wanted to ensure the Plotwise business model did its part ethically, from both a personnel and environmental perspective.
“There are big problems that need to be solved on the economic side, but also on the environmental and the modern societal side, for example labour conditions. “That topic became really apparent in my thoughts. Thinking about technology, thinking about tools, building proof concepts, building a small team and trying to find the sweet spot where we can say ‘hey, here we can really impact society in a positive way’, and building a viable and sustainable business on top of that.”
Michel’s journey to Plotwise is by no means a ‘standard’ one. Prior to this scaleup he had spent time in South Africa spearheading Plakkies, a successful flip-flop brand which offered jobs to local townships and sparked economic impulse within the region. After just one year, Plakkies went on to achieve the biggest launch of a shoe brand on the Dutch market. He credits this experience with what truly ignited his passion for entrepreneurship, and one that prepared him for the highs and lows that came with founding a company.
“The experience of doing business in South Africa, all the complexity of the rollercoaster of building a company was basically condensed into one year. So that was extremely exciting and a huge learning curve. It also got me hooked for life on entrepreneurism.
Following that, Michel opted to return education with the goal of pursuing a career in an industry that was more aligned to his passions.
“I went back to university to finish my degree because I really wanted to focus on something closer to my heart, because the flip-flops, that’s not something I had dreamt about every day. It was a great product but I’m really intrigued by the whole concept of the digital space and how it makes the world turn round.”