In our latest Entrepreneur Spotlight, we sat down with Optibus Founder & CEO, Amos Haggiag, to discuss Optibus’s positive impact on public transportation.
What’s the inspiration behind starting Optibus? What has the company been working on since founding the company?
There is no question that traffic and congestion are running our daily lives, especially if you spend hours driving, every single day. We felt that something must be done. Our vision is for public transportation to be the solution, especially when combined with technological innovation. Technology helps public transportation become more flexible, accessible, and friendly. Our world will benefit from more public vehicles on the roads, and less private cars, so we are doing everything we can to make this happen. Moreover, we are grateful to be playing a leading role doing so.
How are public transportation scheduling and operations being changed for the better by technology?
Optibus is changing the way that public transportation is planned and operated, transforming it from a static annual plan, to real-time day-to-day dynamically adjusted scheduling. The immediate and direct impact is on the transportation operators. With our tools, they can lower the number of vehicles, optimize the driver schedules, improve the electric bus charging, follow regulations better, and ultimately win more tenders. Most importantly, passenger service is improved, creating a better public transit system for all.
What kind of business impact are your customers seeing today by working with Optibus?
Some of the main benefits include:
Substantial OPEX reduction by up to 15%, which results in millions of dollars of annual cost savings. We’ve found that our clients have consistent cost savings; even small operators save over $3M a year for an operation of 100 vehicles.
Enabling strategic decisions such as: timetable changes, location of parking depot and which vehicle type to use for each route, etc.
Improved on-time performance and passenger satisfaction by creating robust schedules, and by adapting to changing demand
Ability to submit winning tender proposals, and securing more business for our clients
Improved working conditions for drivers – better duties, better weekly shifts
In your experience, what’s the best way to work with investors when raising a round of funding as an Israeli company?
Investors are looking for a strong team and innovative technological solution, with a promising future and long-term vision. By communicating results to investors, great solutions, paying customers, financial growth - along with a visionary outlook, we secured interest from international investors. The fact that we are also an Israeli company, also gives us more credit with investors. We are working with our investors closely on strategic decisions, potential partnerships, and recruiting in order to reach our goals.
What’s next for Optibus?
We've got major plans for the future, both short and long term. We are on a mission to transform public transportation from a static, outdated operation into to a dynamic, demand-driven, multi-modal platform. To achieve that, we are continuing to develop the future operating system for city-wide mass transportation, that will plan and operate any vehicle and driver in the city in real-time. We are looking forward to continuing our journey as we continue to impact the world of public transportation.