Introducing Paul McKenzie– a seasoned professional with an impressive track record of successfully leading multiple publicly traded companies in the software solutions space.
With a diverse background spanning Founder, Co-founder, CEO, CFO and Director roles, Paul brings a wealth of experience in underground mapping, carbon markets, artificial intelligence, data compression for imaging, strategic minerals, clean energy and battery metal assets.
He has raised a staggering $120 million in working capital for his corporations, and has overseen subsidiaries and projects across North America and Asia.
Notably, Paul co-founded NexOptic Technology Corp. in 2015 with the late G. Arnold Armstrong, and in 2019, was reinstated as the company’s CEO.
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Table of Contents
We are thrilled to have you join us today, welcome to ValiantCEO Magazine’s exclusive interview! Let’s start off with a little introduction. Tell our readers a bit about yourself and your company.
Paul McKenzie: I’m co-founder & CEO of NexOptic, a company headquartered in Canada with operations in South Korea. We’ve developed a suite of AI Computer Vision Software Products led by NexCompress™. We deliver clearer digital video through noise minimization and save 30+ percent on energy streaming costs.
We are an ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) company that reduces the carbon footprint of, while providing cost savings to, our customers.
I was born in Vancouver, Canada, but spent a lot of time growing up in Mexico, as well as attending schools in both Mexico and Canada. I’ve also lived in several European countries, so you could say I’m well-traveled.
If you were in an elevator with Warren Buffet, how would you describe your company, your services or products? What makes your company different from others? What is your company’s biggest strength?
Paul McKenzie: NexOptic wants to make cloud computing a more sustainable practice. Images and videos take up a large portion of cloud storage, not to mention all the storage needed for data to continuously train AI. Our Aliis and NexCompress technologies take the ‘noise’ out of images and videos before they even hit storage.
Lots of companies provide software solutions for compression, but honestly, we’re doing something unique – stripping image noise prior to compressing data at the source, in real-time. That’s our biggest strength. NexOptic is removing the ‘excess’ before it even reaches compression software.
We’re not a commoditized compression technology, but rather, we strip out image noise, which otherwise cannot be compressed. That makes NexCompress™ an effective add-on to existing CODECs.
Our closest competitors would be CODECs (which are devices or programs that encode or decode data streams), but NexCompress is really an additional tool, not a direct competitor.
What advice do you wish you received when you started your business journey and what do you intend on improving in the next quarter?
Paul McKenzie: The best advice I could have gotten is the advice I often find myself giving. For example, ”when there’s money, there’s a company” — meaning if you have the tenacity to attract the capital then you’ve got a shot. And second, “determination overrides self-doubt.”
In other words, if you’re determined, you’ll find a way. And finally, I suggest being very selective of who you share your ideas and plans with — wait at least until you have sufficient traction under them.
I mention the last one because a lot of your otherwise powerful energy gets diffused and can even get blown-up entirely when oversharing good ideas before you’ve given them a chance to properly germinate.
Online business keeps on surging higher than ever, B2B, B2C, online shopping, virtual meetings, remote work, Zoom medical consultations, what are your expectations for the year to come and how are you capitalizing on the tidal wave?
Paul McKenzie: The surge in online business and cloud computing is what’s driving us forward. We see the surge, understand the growing demands on cloud storage, and know that it leads to increased energy usage.
NexOptic is addressing the needs from two angles: one, by stripping away the unnecessary bits of data, the ‘noise’ that comes with images and videos that just takes up critical space in the cloud. And two, by decreasing file sizes to increase efficiency in energy use for the cloud computing industry.
More and more customers look for, and often demand an environmental policy from companies – NexOptic can help organizations position themselves as ESG leaders.
Business is all about overcoming obstacles and creating opportunities for growth. What do you see as THE real challenge right now?
Paul McKenzie: The real challenge right now in business is gaining initial traction. For us, it’s connecting with a major industry player. Either a multinational creator of video content, a global cloud computing service provider, or a major streaming company.
The challenge of raising awareness to the advantages of data compression for energy and cost savings.
For us to dramatically scale up, it’ll primarily take a catalyst event. As we onboard more clients and customers, I anticipate momentum will drive our product forward. We can’t put a timeline on this, and it’ll involve continuous effort on our part to build upon every milestone we hit.
2020, 2021, 2022 threw a lot of curve balls into businesses on a global scale. Based on the experience gleaned in the past years, how can businesses thrive in 2023? What lessons have you learned and what advice would you share?
Paul McKenzie: What the last few years has taught many businesses is that you can’t be prepared enough. So in the new year, my advice for companies would be to adopt a strategy that focuses on risk mitigation through data analytics.
Invest in technology that can analyze your company’s historical performance to guide your business. And make informed decisions driven by that data.
When NexOptic first started, we were an optics hardware company, aimed at creating optical technologies for commercial use. Smartphone lenses, a handheld telescope with built-in digital binoculars.
But in the process of that development, we realized that we needed a software component to really offer a complete package.
And in developing that software, we came to the realization that it could be a standalone product that could not only revolutionize imaging, but could significantly reduce the carbon footprint for our customers. We evolved.
What does “success” in the year to come mean to you? It could be on a personal or business level, please share your vision.
Paul McKenzie: Success in the year to come will center on our ability to build brand awareness. Aliis and NexCompress can potentially disrupt the cloud computing industry on a large scale.
It’s important to note how NexOptic technology will particularly affect the streaming and cloud storage industries. These industries will only continue to grow, which will in turn demand exponential need for energy in order to operate.
We need to take big steps in addressing the energy requirements of these industries to align with other steps companies are taking to improve the environment.
Dealing with power consumption of cloud providers and streaming and storage needs: we want to be at the forefront of addressing the environmental impact of such technological growth.
Jerome Knyszewski, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Paul McKenzie for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Paul McKenzie or his company, you can do it through his – Linkedin Page
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