Some call him tech visionary, we call him Tobi. No matter the name, CEO Tobias Meister is steering the automotive industry’s first connected ecosystem… and he has a story to tell.
After years of management experience across BMW, Audi and Porsche, Tobias Meister knew something within the automotive industry had to change. Fundamental elements were missing from the systems he was required to use: the ability to manage operations in real-time, digitisation & modern technology across the entire industry, and essential data connections between the customers he was serving, the retail chain he was managing, and the manufacturer he reported to.
In 2014, he left Porsche with the vision to build the industry’s first fully-connected solution to answer the challenges he had been facing for years. Today, Tobias Meister answers a few questions for us.
1. What were you doing before aureso?
Working as a Regional Manager for Porsche Asia Pacific in charge of the aftersales operation, with a focus on dealer management system (DMS) and data management projects.
2. What made you decide to found aureso in 2013?
The pain/limitation I experienced in my job day in and day out, of not being able to implement or utilise the latest technologies, respond to demands for digitalisation, or enable the opportunities we needed in order to drive change. I’ve been involved in the tech and startup ecosystem through close friends for quite awhile, and was fortunate enough to observe and follow how digitalisation can change the way industries operate, and drive these opportunities. Since automotive retail is one of the last industries to be disrupted, and my professional home for the last decade, it was just a matter of time to take on the challenge.
3. Explain aureso. What does it bring to the automotive retail industry?
aureso provides an industry-first solution to empower OEMs to cope with the massive disruption that is driven through digitalisation. The aureso ecosystem provides OEMs with the technology infrastructure they need to accelerate digitalisation, by connecting and integrating their entire retail chain (customer, dealer, OEM, car). As a result, OEMs have a single retail technology platform that empowers
- Live and uniform global retail performance management; to achieve a new level of operational efficiency & productivity
- Dealer network and customer connectivity; to deliver a seamless brand experience in order to drive customer retention
- Integrated vehicle data into the dealer network; to predict and influence purchase decisions
4. What makes it different from competitor products?
The ability to provide connectivity to the entire retail chain and maximise the utilisation of data in order to generate new business opportunities
5. Who do you see as your target audience?
The OEMs, as the solution is implemented and scaled from their hands.
5. What is the biggest hurdle you have faced or are still facing?
Right now it’s trust and resources. We need more resources to finish the product, and we need trust from an innovative automotive brand to pilot our solution. It’s much easier for them to rely on the usual industry players, as the risk is much lower.
6. What are you most excited about at the moment?
The Infiniti LAB 2.0 Accelerator in Hong Kong, powered by Nest. We are one of the 9 startups, out of 150, chosen from around the world to participate in their rigorous 3-month program. With a focus on connectivity, mobility & smart cities, the Accelerator is designed to help start-ups like us grow and scale rapidly.