Once the second command of Israel’s version of Delta Force, Doran Kempel created and sold the two tech companies for a combined $ 850 million. He now sees financial opportunities in public safety.
HAzel Carrasquillo was riding the bus Late one night in March, he came home from work when a distraught man shouted at him. As she began to close her stop, the man also landed in a suburb of Chicago, leaving her feeling insecure.
Instead of calling the police, she used an app on her phone to video-call a private security service, who lived on the line with her until she went home. If anything happens, the video was being recorded, and the agent could call the police at his place.
“Israeli Special Forces soldier-based tech entrepreneur” Kempel, 57, says, “The authorities, with our tax dollars, cannot afford to set up a platform that allows all of us to reach them when we feel uncomfortable.” ” “We call it a personal safety difference.”
The New York-based company employs call center employees who communicate with users with text, video, or audio. For example, in the event of domestic violence a person may not be able to call the police safely. Instead, they could ask one of Bond’s representatives to recite them carefully.
“Officials, with our tax dollars, cannot afford to set a stage that allows all of us to reach them when we feel uncomfortable.”
At first glance, Bond appears to target a murderer of a niche market. After all, how many people find themselves in unsafe situations so often that they are willing to pay for an app for peace of mind? So far, only 10% of bond users or about 15,000 people are paying about $ 10 per month for the service, generating an estimated $ 1.5 million in revenue.
But there are some reasons to take Bond seriously. First, “public safety” apps such as Citizen, a voyeuristic crime tracking app, and NextDoor, a hyper-local neighborhood social media network, have become quite popular; Citizen has over 6 million users after raising nearly $ 6 billion and NextDoor now operates in 10 countries. Second, the founders of Bond are betting big on their own track record that they can build a successful company.
Kempel’s backstory deserves a screenplay. Kempel, born and raised in Israel, spent 13 years with the Israel Defense Forces, where he moved on to the second-in-command of the Special Forces unit, the Rough counterpart of America’s Delta Force unit. In 1992, he led Operation Bumble Bush, which aimed to assassinate Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein; He said that five people were killed during the operation, who were killed during the last rehearsal. Forbes in 2013.
Rise of neighborhood security apps
Such platforms are causing concern. How to compare bonds:
In 1994, his focus shifted to the corporate world and he was admitted to Harvard Business School, where he led paramilitary leadership to run the business. He became a vice president at Dell EMC before launching two software companies. One of those companies, Diligent Technologies, which makes software to help corporate board meetings, was sold to IBM in 2008 for about $ 200 million. Another firm, SimpleiVity Corporation, which makes cost-saving software for data centers, was sold to Hewewt Packard. Enterprise in 2017 for $ 650 million. Soon after selling SimpVT, Kempel says he began working on the bond. “I don’t need holidays,” Kempel says.
Bond remained in development for nearly two years when it began testing the app in an undisclosed Connecticut city in 2019 before launching nationwide in November. In addition to communication, one of the main features of the platform is an alleged artificial intelligence device, called “Track My Walk”, which can detect whether a user has walked or been in a moving vehicle; Unexpected changes in the movement will prompt a bond representative to check-in with a customer or call police.
Another early concern is the role of Bond, a private security company operating in a stressful environment, usually reserved for 911 dispatchers and emergency employees. As a private company, bonds are not subject to transparency laws that govern the behavior of public officials and government agencies; Calls between its users and representatives cannot be accessed publicly, says Cade Crockford, who heads the American Civil Liberties Union’s Technology for Liberal program. “There are a lot of red flags here.”
As if anticipating concerns over privacy, Bond has established ties to law enforcement, and hires high-ranking former police officers to advise the company to comply with local laws. Ed Davis, who was commissioner of the Boston Police Department from 2006 to 2013, is among those advising Bond. Davis explains that Bond’s call center workers, called “security agents,” receive four weeks of training, including 911 dispatchers. He also dismissed concerns of transparency and said privatization in the policing sector had been going on for decades. “[Bond] Technology takes into the equation, ”says Davis. “This is the next stage of that process.”
For customers like Carrascillo, 30, who were provided by the company, using bonds has become a daily routine; She uses the platform so often that she gets to know some call center workers. As an anxious person, she says, the “Track My Walk” feature removes any worries that she may have for a late home visit from work. She says: “I’m super cautious.”
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