Create the Future. Today

Wise Words with Peter Knudsen

Telecommunications

We talk to Peter Knudsen, CEO of BLIP Systems.

Regular readers will know that we have written about BLIP Systems’ Bluetooth and wifi-enabled beacon technology and its many applications. First, it was an airport sensor system that tracks mobile phones to provide accurate queue times. Then, we saw the tech being used in Christmas markets to monitor shopper behavior and optimize retail operations. Lastly, the device sensor system helped New Zealand Transport Agency create live-streamed traffic data for road works and motorists.

CEO of the company, Peter Knudsen, worked in project management, then R&D management for multinational telecommunications corporation L.M. Ericsson, before continuing on the company’s idea of using Bluetooth access points to provide location-based services in the new venture BLIP Systems. We talk to him to find out about his journey as an entrepreneur.


Thanks Peter.
14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

We should have believed more in our own knowledge of our specific market, rather than that of an external investor. The investor we brought on board have added many good things to BLIP Systems. But if we had more confidence in ourselves early on, we might have been at a different place today. No one knows more about your business than you do. Receive all the guidance you can, but remember to be critical when applying it.

8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
6. What motivates you to keep going? What do you do when you hit a block?

Reaching targets and closing deals. There’s never only one way, hitting a block makes me want to find a way around it.

7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

We should have believed more in our own knowledge of our specific market, rather than that of an external investor. The investor we brought on board have added many good things to BLIP Systems. But if we had more confidence in ourselves early on, we might have been at a different place today. No one knows more about your business than you do. Receive all the guidance you can, but remember to be critical when applying it.

8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
5. What drove you crazy when building your business?

Mostly the setbacks and the time it takes. We have not progressed in a straight line, there has been a few dead ends to visit on the way. We could have progressed faster in a straight line, but there were lessons to be learned in the dead ends.

6. What motivates you to keep going? What do you do when you hit a block?

Reaching targets and closing deals. There’s never only one way, hitting a block makes me want to find a way around it.

7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

We should have believed more in our own knowledge of our specific market, rather than that of an external investor. The investor we brought on board have added many good things to BLIP Systems. But if we had more confidence in ourselves early on, we might have been at a different place today. No one knows more about your business than you do. Receive all the guidance you can, but remember to be critical when applying it.

8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
4. What’s the most important characteristic for being an entrepreneur?

I think it’s the will and ability to reach a target. The business idea has to be valid and sustainable. But I think many good ideas get a faith less than what they deserve, and some bad ones the opposite — at least on short term. This leads me to believe the ability to plan and execute is the most important ability.

5. What drove you crazy when building your business?

Mostly the setbacks and the time it takes. We have not progressed in a straight line, there has been a few dead ends to visit on the way. We could have progressed faster in a straight line, but there were lessons to be learned in the dead ends.

6. What motivates you to keep going? What do you do when you hit a block?

Reaching targets and closing deals. There’s never only one way, hitting a block makes me want to find a way around it.

7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

We should have believed more in our own knowledge of our specific market, rather than that of an external investor. The investor we brought on board have added many good things to BLIP Systems. But if we had more confidence in ourselves early on, we might have been at a different place today. No one knows more about your business than you do. Receive all the guidance you can, but remember to be critical when applying it.

8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
3. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on BLIP Systems?

When home I want to spend time with my family. As I’m often away on business, spending time with my family is a priority when in Denmark. I enjoy fiddling with mechanics, because it is completely different to what I do at work and I own an old motorcycle and car that I can mess with when I have time.

4. What’s the most important characteristic for being an entrepreneur?

I think it’s the will and ability to reach a target. The business idea has to be valid and sustainable. But I think many good ideas get a faith less than what they deserve, and some bad ones the opposite — at least on short term. This leads me to believe the ability to plan and execute is the most important ability.

5. What drove you crazy when building your business?

Mostly the setbacks and the time it takes. We have not progressed in a straight line, there has been a few dead ends to visit on the way. We could have progressed faster in a straight line, but there were lessons to be learned in the dead ends.

6. What motivates you to keep going? What do you do when you hit a block?

Reaching targets and closing deals. There’s never only one way, hitting a block makes me want to find a way around it.

7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

We should have believed more in our own knowledge of our specific market, rather than that of an external investor. The investor we brought on board have added many good things to BLIP Systems. But if we had more confidence in ourselves early on, we might have been at a different place today. No one knows more about your business than you do. Receive all the guidance you can, but remember to be critical when applying it.

8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
2. Can you describe a typical working day?

Most of my day will be spent speaking to existing and potential customers. We have a very experienced and competent technical team, which allows me to focus on sales activities primarily. That involves a lot of travel activity, as most of our clients are international.

3. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on BLIP Systems?

When home I want to spend time with my family. As I’m often away on business, spending time with my family is a priority when in Denmark. I enjoy fiddling with mechanics, because it is completely different to what I do at work and I own an old motorcycle and car that I can mess with when I have time.

4. What’s the most important characteristic for being an entrepreneur?

I think it’s the will and ability to reach a target. The business idea has to be valid and sustainable. But I think many good ideas get a faith less than what they deserve, and some bad ones the opposite — at least on short term. This leads me to believe the ability to plan and execute is the most important ability.

5. What drove you crazy when building your business?

Mostly the setbacks and the time it takes. We have not progressed in a straight line, there has been a few dead ends to visit on the way. We could have progressed faster in a straight line, but there were lessons to be learned in the dead ends.

6. What motivates you to keep going? What do you do when you hit a block?

Reaching targets and closing deals. There’s never only one way, hitting a block makes me want to find a way around it.

7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

We should have believed more in our own knowledge of our specific market, rather than that of an external investor. The investor we brought on board have added many good things to BLIP Systems. But if we had more confidence in ourselves early on, we might have been at a different place today. No one knows more about your business than you do. Receive all the guidance you can, but remember to be critical when applying it.

8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.
1. Where did the idea for BLIP Systems come from?

BLIP Systems was founded as a management buy out from L.M. Ericsson, continuing on ericssons idea to use Bluetooth access point to provide location-based services. Early on we were quite successful building partnerships with content providers, and creating creating content delivery networks within commercial areas such as shopping centres and cinemas. Providing statistics on how many people there are in an area, for how long, and how often, were always an important part of the platform. As the number of telephones with Bluetooth grew, the value of data outgrew the value of the content distributed via Bluetooth. From then BLIP Systems were focused on collecting and analyzing data.

2. Can you describe a typical working day?

Most of my day will be spent speaking to existing and potential customers. We have a very experienced and competent technical team, which allows me to focus on sales activities primarily. That involves a lot of travel activity, as most of our clients are international.

3. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on BLIP Systems?

When home I want to spend time with my family. As I’m often away on business, spending time with my family is a priority when in Denmark. I enjoy fiddling with mechanics, because it is completely different to what I do at work and I own an old motorcycle and car that I can mess with when I have time.

4. What’s the most important characteristic for being an entrepreneur?

I think it’s the will and ability to reach a target. The business idea has to be valid and sustainable. But I think many good ideas get a faith less than what they deserve, and some bad ones the opposite — at least on short term. This leads me to believe the ability to plan and execute is the most important ability.

5. What drove you crazy when building your business?

Mostly the setbacks and the time it takes. We have not progressed in a straight line, there has been a few dead ends to visit on the way. We could have progressed faster in a straight line, but there were lessons to be learned in the dead ends.

6. What motivates you to keep going? What do you do when you hit a block?

Reaching targets and closing deals. There’s never only one way, hitting a block makes me want to find a way around it.

7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

We should have believed more in our own knowledge of our specific market, rather than that of an external investor. The investor we brought on board have added many good things to BLIP Systems. But if we had more confidence in ourselves early on, we might have been at a different place today. No one knows more about your business than you do. Receive all the guidance you can, but remember to be critical when applying it.

8. Do you have any habits or routines, which help you in your working life?

Not really. But I do prioritize to be off when it’s possible, I need to recharge my batteries.

9. What book are you reading, or writing now?

Unfortunately I don’t have much time to read, but I listen to audio books when traveling. Mostly fiction.

10. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?

We will continue our growth and development of our current product. Not much revolution, but we are following a plan towards providing the best platform on the market for analysis and presentation of data regarding flows and processes.

11. If you weren’t working on BLIP Systems, what would you be doing?

Designing race cars, or owning a small hotel.

12. Tell Springwise a secret…

Haven’t really got that many secrets, most information is available if you have a reason to ask.

13. How did you get your initial round of funding to get your company off the ground?

When we initially started we wanted to keep some key competences together, and Ericsson made that possible by allowing us to perform the management buy out at a time where they still needed our resources. In the beginning we financed our growth with consultancy income from Ericsson. Later on we took on more traditional private equity to further accelerate our growth, but at that time we could already finance our own costs.

14. How do you feel about your journey ahead and do you have any wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Believe in yourself, nobody knows your business better than you do. But do get help where you need it. You will not be the best at making the plans, executing them, product management and sales, so find out where you’re strongest.

Thanks Peter.