TheONE partner and investor updates
After two years of development and with the great help of you and others we can now say that we are up and running. Maybe not with the speed everyone wishes for, but at least there is a lot of progress and people are joining from all over the world.
We are now active in 72 countries covering, more than 26 languages and over 9.000 different areas of expertise. The number of experts are growing slow but steady, and most importantly, the quality of the profiles of our experts is much higher than ever expected. With only a few thousand users, people already start to call experts for advice. This was promising as this is something we only expected to happen after having at least 20.000 active experts.
We have a proof of concept that people from all over the world have great empathy for our platform and are willing to spend serious time to profile themselves in the best way possible. With this kind of quality profiles, we'll soon become the biggest living and breathing world encyclopedia and therefore a better alternative than Google and WikiPedia.
Although this sounds ambitious, we already know that Google can't give the answers on questions as fast, personalized and in-depth as our experts can. Therefore we believe that it's only a matter of time before we will become the new standard of finding answers on questions that matters.
our ideology is of huge importance for society
Seeing our platform being filled with so many diverse profiles from people all over the world makes us realize how important our role and the underlying message in this world is. Regardless of their education, age, the colour of their skin, their religion or social status, within TheONE everyONE is the same. We connect the rich and the poor, the Muslim and the Christian because we can all benefit from each other. Our ideology is that everyONE can be of value for another. Not because we have to, but because it's our human nature. That is what TheONE stands for.
This ideology does not only reflect to our users, it also reflects to how we work as a team. Based on natural hierarchy and with the deepest respect for our differences, we use each other's knowledge to come up with creative solutions to fulfill our mission. We don't always have to agree with each other on the daily operations, but there is never a doubt that we all share the same dreams. That is: connecting people for the better.
we bring value to people's lives all over the world
While keeping the shareholders value top of mind, we are driven by the power of what our platform can and will mean for so many people all over the world. We dream of the wealth people will gain. Both on income and by gaining knowledge. The deprived widow in Bangladesh can now share her knowledge of leather tanning all over the world while making an income to support her family, the lonely elder can always talk to a listening ear and the schoolboy finally passed his exams by having access to the best homeschooling teacher. These are only a few examples of the value TheONE brings to our society. We call it meaningful profit.
...everyONE can be of value for another.
working without borders
It gives great pleasure and satisfaction to know that people who love their job can keep working and contribute to society even after closing time. It's also amazing to see that experts understand that we don't believe in borders and that they can service people in need of answers all over the world. But these practical benefits we as TheONE have to offer might stand in the shadow of the opportunities we offer to those who live in countries with political or economical problems and who have a lot of experience but no tools to exploit them.
we have a gap to bridge
We strongly believe that keeping focus on enabling people to share and gain knowledge in the end will create investors value. But before we reach that point, we have a huge gap to bridge. Not only do we offer a brand new service, we also offer it in a brand new way. Therefore people not only need to hear from the opportunity we bring them, they also need to get used to it and that will take a lot of time, effort and creativity. Along with substantial investments it also requires patience from you as our co-investors.
we can not do it alone and neither will you be alone
We have proven that our dream is shared by many like you and we are confident that others will follow to support us all. Not only financially, but also with their network, time, knowledge and effort. We know that people are willing to support our journey because they share our values, see the importance and impact of our ideology and know that sharing knowledge is the only way to create a more civilized and equal world.
we facilitate and support our active members to become active ambassadors
We are a platform for the people by the people. At the moment we don't know yet what sort of expertise will be most dominant if any will be and we can only hope that the current diversity remains the same or even expand. Meanwhile we do our utmost best to support the current experts by connecting them with people in search of their knowledge and skills. Our biggest marketing tool is satisfied experts and users. The power of their enthusiasm is far greater than any marketing budget could accomplish. Nevertheless it will take us serious creativity, time, effort and investment to support the current experts and connect them to users in need. Due to lack of fame we need to pull new users into our platform until we've created the critical mass that spreads the word of mouth faster than advertising can accomplish. With the current team we are confident that we can reach our goals and come up with the most satisfying ways to connect people to people.
the users' input will guide our development roadmap
New insights and technologies will always inspire us to improve TheONE and although we have great knowledge and experience ourselves, we can never be solely in charge of the development road map. Being a people to people platform, not the commercial benefit or technological possibilities and our own creativity, but the user input should be our primary guide for improvements. We keep listening to our current and future users and experts to develop the right features and functionalities at the right moment in the benefit of the majority of our platform.
...we believe that it's only a matter of time before we will become the new standard of finding answers on questions that matters.
authority is shifting
Today an expert is not only defined as an authority by the skills and knowledge, but also by his or her background and job. Working for the notable lawyer company makes you an authority and a great lawyer in the eye of the beholder. But what about that consumer who had 5 lawsuits already? Or what about that retired lawyer with over 50 years of experience. They will join our platform and can be of better help than that expensive authority. Based on our review ranking system they can and will even become a higher authority than the person working for that law firm. This and the convenience of our platform will force companies to profile their best experts at TheONE. They want to be ranked and seen by society and already understand that their current business and promotion model is getting out of date. The same as Facebook was years ago perceived as a funny platform for teenagers and later became the fundament of profiling a company, we will win trust and show that everyONE needs to join as being an authority is shifting in the eye of the beholder.
early adopters and innovators
Like with every new platform or product, we are depending now on the willingness and likability of the early adopters and innovators. This specific group is estimated to be 16% of the total society worldwide. We put great effort in doing business development to gain the first B2C customers who will add their employees and thus expertise on our platform. But we are also realistic. Big companies with many employees also only have around 16% employees and managers in average that will actively support the idea to use our platform. We have already contact with many innovators and early adopters in several famous national and international companies all over the world who are willing to join. We also have to be realistic that it takes time for them to convince their colleagues as long as we are not perceived as an authority or have reached the critical mass.
learning by doing
Entering a new market with a new solution is always challenging. Many people tried to compare TheONE with platforms like UBER, Airbnb, Spotify and other great contributions to society, but we don't believe in those comparisons. History has proven that it's very often not wise to look back on the past and try to copy the success of another due to many factors. Change travels fast and especially in our business. Of course we will learn from what others did successfully and where they failed. It would be foolish to not know about your own history. But we strongly believe that every product or solution needs its own approach in time to become successful. The ‘marketing book' of last week is already outdated today and therefore we need to find our own ways to become likable, more useful and create the critical mass. This means we need to be creative, flexible and adaptive to change every single day as the truth of today is bypassed tomorrow. Although it doesn't seem to be the most cost efficient way according to traditional business standards, we believe it's much more cheaper and effective in the long run. Our aim is not to reinvent the wheel, but to develop the jet engine to make us fly to go through space. Only by doing so we will discover opportunities that would have never have exposed itself that will create the value to outsmart any competition and win the hearts of millions.
image and branding are the key
We all know the hard times companies like Facebook and Google had recently when it comes to their advertising and data policy. Although we could gain a substantial amount of revenue by offering experts and other companies to promote their brand and expertise by paid advertisements on TheONE, we won't do it. Neither will we use personal data for any other purpose than to help our users to become more successful and to offer the best knowledge to everyone in need of an answer. More earnings can never be an argument if it potentially can lower the quality of our platform, influence the search results and endanger the honesty of our good intentions. People come to find the best match for their answers and in no way users should be able to think that we manipulate anything in the benefit of advertisement revenue. Our brand stands for transparency and helpfulness. Revenue is a result of that.
goals feed our ambitions
We aim high but set realistic goals to feed our ambitions. We have a long way to go before we gain the critical mass and consumers all over the world will perceive us as the new standard when searching for answers. It will be even a longer and harder way before we have the authority and therefore power to spread our message with substantial impact that we believe that we are all ONE. In order to get there we will achieve the first small steps below in 2019.
> expert growth With the help of our B2C customers, business partners, influencers, affiliate program and our advertising program our community will continue to grow the number of highly qualified experts and users.
> media & pr We will partner with influential bloggers and prominent (tech related) online media that will start writing about the revolution TheONE stands for.
> partners We can't do it all alone and together we know more than we could ever know alone. Therefore we will maintain the focus on the right partners and strategic alliances for our online and offline presence.
> ranking We will keep focus on ranking higher every day in the Google ranking with focus on our most popular expertise categories.
> revenue and company value Hundreds of experts will make a monthly living due to TheONE, but meanwhile TheONE will still make losses, but based on the LUV (live time user value) we expect already by 2020 that our company value will be higher than all investments made until then.
> best of the best Although we are not in a highly competitive market, we expect soon others will jump in and compete with us. Secondly, we need to stay up to speed and need all the talent a company can find to accelerate community growth. Therefore we will expand our team only with the best of the best people we can find that seamlessly fit our culture.
> expert areas of expertise With an eye on the quality we will expand our community to facilitate more areas of expertise to offer more and better answers every day for those with questions.
> usability We will continue to develop our platform in order to create better usability in the best way to serve our experts to get in contact with the people in need of answers.
We have a long road ahead of us with many ups and downs, but with our passion for the contribution TheONE will give to society, we will go ahead with pride. Thank you for sharing your time, effort, resources and mental support in helping us in our journey. Together we are TheONEs who will create a better world for everyONE.
Co-founder of TheONE