Oveit COO Mihai Drăgan: Romania has growth potential on Live Stream Shopping

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Oveit, a company originating from Romania, founded in 2015 and established in 2019 in the United States of America, respectively in Austin, Texas, provides software solutions for live experiences (access control, ticketing or data analysis), such as conferences or live festivals, to allow access to a wider audience.

Mihai Dragan

In 2017, the two founders of Oveit, Mihai Drăgan and Andrei Ștefan developed the concept of cashless payments for events and leisure locations and loyalty solutions, as well as access control and registration solutions for virtual and physical events, being in the top 4 companies in the world in this segment.

Mihai Drăgan has been helping companies for 17 years to improve their online presence and better market their products, and had founded his first company at the age of 25. Andrei Ștefan has over 15 years of experience in leading technology driven companies in several industries, working with both startups and large corporations.

They began to expand their operations internationally and in 2019, the company moved its headquarters to Austin, Texas, operating its event management platform, cashless payments and digital wallets for events and locations. So far, they have managed to raise more than $850,000 in funding, and in 2019, Oveit was voted the most promising start-up of 2019 at the NO CASH Gala, and the WTO, part of the United Nations, awarded them the title of “disruptive technology innovator.”

The company now aims at improving access to marketing solutions and experiential commerce, choosing Romania as the place to launch Live Stream Shopping Launch, a solution for retailers and brands that sell directly to the consumer. Oveit has just announced the other days that it had opened a round of SAFE financing on SeedBlink, the equity crowdfunding platform. The company plans to attract 400,000 euros from private investors interested in technology, but also from individuals who seek to invest their capital in technology startups with great potential for growth and scaling.

We talked to Mihai Drăgan, the COO of the company, about their plans and about how the Live Stream Shopping is accommodating on the local market.

 

What are the plans for Oveit in 2021?

Oveit’s plans for the next 5 years are to make Streams.live the leading platform in technology and the top choice for retailers who want to offer an innovative and interactive experience for consumers.

In 2021 we will actively start working on this goal and we expect to establish more partnerships with retailers on both local and international markets.

We will continue our strategic partnerships with some of the most important brands globally, in the media, telecommunications, beauty, and fashion, automotive and other industries, to help them connect with their audiences through live e-commerce experiences. The financing from SeedBlink will help us further expand on the global market and continue working on defining the new experiential era in online commerce. As our company has been located in the United States since 2019, we are planning to launch Streams.live in Austin, Texas as well.

 

Is Romania a proper market for Live Stream Shopping?

We chose Romania as the first country for the Live Stream Shopping Launch because we see it as an e-commerce leader in the Eastern European market. The country is becoming more and more appealing for top international brands and we saw a great growth potential here with the evolution of online retail and Social Media platforms.

Even though Romania is far from the size of markets in Asia, North-America, or other European countries, where the concept of Live Stream Shopping is already known, the e-commerce market is constantly rising and this gives us high hopes for exploring the opportunities.

 

How do you see the evolution of the Romanian e-commerce market in the next few years?

On a global level, the Live Stream Shopping market has a huge potential and is projected to reach $ 1 billion in 2019 to $ 320 billion in 2023 in the United States alone, and $ 474 billion in China. This is the biggest change in trade from the last 70 years. Amazon has 15 years of activity, someone will be the leader in Live Stream Shopping, and we will be among them, with the Streams.Live product.

As I have mentioned before, the Romanian e-commerce market is in continuous development and expansion and we believe that this will force local retailers to consider more digital solutions and to consolidate their online presence more than they did before.

 

How will Live Stream Shopping be integrated into the marketing mix?

Online and offline are meant to coexist and complement each other. Live Stream Shopping is a solution for retailers and brands that sell directly to the consumer. At the beginning, we wanted to adapt to the new economic context, in which traffic in physical stores and sales generated by this channel was decreasing. The pandemic was a favorable context for the growth of interactive live shopping and the demand came mainly from the younger generations – Gen Z and Millennials who prefer a direct, personal, and interactive interaction with the brand when shopping online, enjoying experiences almost as much as the products they buy. It is a change in global consumer behavior.

Streams.Live is a tool that integrates easily into the sales cycle, is installed by a few clicks on the seller’s website, and if he does not have his own website, the whole experience can take place on an automatically generated page system, completely customizable.

 

What are the main industries to benefit from the live stream technology?

The technology is very versatile and Streams.Live solution is very suitable for the Fashion & Beauty industry, but we also consider Food & Beverage, Automotive, Electronics, Home & Leisure, and also media companies.

 

 Who are the companies that implemented the Streams.Live technology in Romania?

Following the launch in October, major brands such as Renault Group, L’Oreal, Vodafone, and Medlife have already begun adopting Streams.live technology, developed by Oveit. An eloquent example is the launch of the new Dacia model in December, the first global digital sales initiative of its kind, which managed to generate an extraordinary increase in car sales through live streams.

 

What are the key differentiators that will make Oveit an international leader in the live streaming technology market?

Oveit is a very strong team and we have solid experience and international results on global tech cashless payments and distribution points in all strategic markets – the USA, Asia through Japan and Europe through the UK and Ireland, and in Africa with South Africa. We are on the B2B segment, on a global market of 250 billion dollars in 2020, with an estimated growth of up to 1 trillion dollars in 2023.

We founded Oveit in 2015 and our main product was a software solution for live experiences (access control, ticketing, or data analysis) when we decided to take the idea to the next level and create experiences such as conferences or live festivals, to allow access to a wider audience. In 2017 we developed the concept of cashless payments for events and locations, being in the top 4 companies in the world in this segment from the very beginning.

Along with my partner, Andrei Ștefan, we gathered all the necessary market insights from the previous business, an omnichannel retail platform, which we sold to a German corporation, but also from previous experiences and that led to the shaping of the Streams.live solution.

I have been helping companies for 17 years to improve their online presence and better market their products, and I founded my first company at the age of 25. Andrei has over 15 years of experience in leading technology-driven companies in several industries, working with both startups and large corporations.

The main strength we foresee is that the online shopping experience can become much more engaging than we are accustomed to. If we think about it, e-commerce stores used to mean photos, text, prices, and a shopping cart at a very basic level. Meanwhile, the best digital experiences are provided by Social Media giants, with live shows, videos, and even augmented reality. We want to take advantage of this context and we also have all the necessary know-how to become a market leader in this segment.

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