He offered his 1st challenge for R$ 350,000 on the age of 19. Right now, he makes hundreds of thousands serving to corporations with knowledge evaluation.
- November 28, 2022
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From a very young age, Bruno Ramos began to undertake out of necessity, to help supplement the family income. At age 15, he had his first contact with computing through a technical course. Soon after, he started to develop products and sell them to companies. With the experience gained, the entrepreneur founded HartB, an artificial intelligence and data science startup.
“I started entrepreneurship very early, but because of the family economic issue. My mother was a maid and my father worked in construction. The legacy they wanted to leave me was education, which in fact transformed my life and that of my siblings”, says Ramos.
At the technical school, he had the opportunity to learn computing concepts, which would later be the basis for the development of his projects. “At 19, I started to develop my first product in the area of artificial intelligence and sold this product to a large Brazilian company. At the time, I managed to sell it for R$ 350 thousand. It was a lot of money, a kid from the outskirts of the Rio de Janeiro who made a sale of 350,000 ”, he recalls.
In 2016, Ramos designed an algorithm for optimizing agricultural production and presented it on the Shark Tank program. “I sold 30% of this solution to João Appolinário, owner of Polishop, and we are partners until today”, he says. Inside Polishop, the entrepreneur met Pedro Ica. “He was Appolinário’s new business director. At that time, I had identified some market problems and tried to find out how to solve them, so I formulated what HartB would be. I presented the idea to Pedro and he found it interesting.”
The idea of the business was to help major players in the market to deal with data, an increasingly important differentiator. The goal was to work with artificial intelligence in a general way, not just focused on a specific niche. With this premise, in 2019, Ramos founded HartB. Ica became a partner in the venture.
In the first year of operation, the startup earned BRL 1.2 million. According to Ramos, the growth was all bootstrap – that is, with its own resources. “As an entrepreneur from the periphery, what was always difficult was access to capital. I was called a genius several times, but even though I was chancellor, access to capital was always limited.” However, bringing more people into the operation, HartB attracted support from Endeavor and Google, integrating the Black Founders Fund, a big tech project that supports black entrepreneurs.
Currently, the startup operates on two fronts. “We have a tool that collects data through public websites, which are distributed on the internet, about a specific person or group of people for behavior analysis. The other product optimizes the customer’s journey within a company, helping in the recovery of those who left the operation and in the activation of new ones”, explains Ramos. The platform works in the SaaS model (software as a service), and the solutions can be connected to any CRM.
The company also provides consulting services in order to structure data platforms for clients and manufacture exclusive software. The average ticket for products is BRL 247.5 thousand and, for services, about BRL 577.5 thousand. “Today we are billing with 70% services and 30% products, but working to be 80% products and 20% services”, says Ramos. The business model is aimed at B2C operations, focusing on medium and large companies, but there are already plans to model a product to serve small companies at a relatively low cost.
With some clients abroad, the startup intends to focus on international expansion next year. “We have an address in Florida, we opened an office in Portugal and we created a development center in London to run a technological product movement operation”, says Ramos.
For 2023, the expectation is to double the team of employees, opening 138 vacancies. Today, there are 100 employees. “We are focusing on diversity, we have some training programs for low-income people, mainly from communities on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. We are working with Google to bring in people who are graduating from the programs they support.”
With the consolidation of its structure and client portfolio, the startup also intends to open a more robust round of investment. HartB plans to close 2022 with revenues of BRL 30 million and triple the number next year.
Source: PEGN Magazine