Digital Matter Q&A

Stuart German, Digital Matter's Business Development Director, answers some questions about Digital Matter:


Who Are You?

Digital Matter !
We have 34 staff across offices in the United States, Australia and South Africa - we ship devices to over 50 countries!
We are the tech folks behind the scenes, and have over 500,000 devices out there with our technology in them!
 

DM Devices around the world
 

What Do You Offer?

Connected Devices and Software.
Mainly GPS tracking devices for vehicles and assets, and IoT "sensors" - and the software platforms that manage them - in a turnkey white-label format.
 

Tell me about your products and equipment?

We have 3 categories of devices:
  1. Traditional GPS tracking devices, mainly for vehicles and equipment with a power source
  2. Battery-powered GPS tracking devices
  3. IoT (Internet of Things) asset location and data logging devices
Our products are designed by our global team, and manufactured in China and South Africa, and exported to over 50 countries around the world.  
Our products are known for their high quality, excellent performance, and competitive pricing.

We have designed our products to be easily deployed into the market by our resellers using our OEM Server Device Management Platform.   This key to our success gives the reseller the ability to configure, debug, and support the devices Over The Air (OTA) without having to refer back to the manufacturer.

Our products can be used "out the box" with our in-house tracking platform called Telematics Guru.   This easy to use SME oriented platform is white label ready for small tracking companies or start-ups looking to provide hardware and software to their customers under the brand without getting involved in designing products and platforms themselves.

Our bread and butter is the GPS tracking side.  The battery powered tracking is all about innovation and bringing down the costs of tracking unpowered assets (bins, containers, equipment, etc..) where the asset may not be of high value or it is difficult to wire up a tracking device to the asset as there is no power supply on the asset.

We believe that we are world leaders in this space, and with our newly updated range of devices are cementing our claim to this title!

The IoT devices are more about low power, low data, asset location devices that can use Sigfox and LoRaWAN, the new IoT cellular networks like LTE CAT-M1 and NB-IoT. It's all changing very quickly!
 

How long have you been in the market?

18 years.  Digital Matter started in South Africa where the security situation required vehicle tracking and asset recovery devices. Digital Matter soon expanded to Australia, New Zealand, and opened an office in Atlanta, USA in 2017.
 

So Why Have I Never Heard of Digital Matter?

Our model is to design and develop innovative Connected Devices and Software, and we sell these through our Reseller Partners and Enterprise customers globally, most of whom brand the devices and software with their own brand and marketing.

Since 2001 over 500,000 Digital Matter designed devices have been manufactured and supplied into global markets, across a variety of industries and solutions.
 

Why is your product different?

We focus on the technology so can innovate and bring new product to market quickly through our partner network.
We pride ourselves in the quality of our products - they are top performing in their classes, we do not scrimp on component quality, and we pre-test all the devices off the production line to minimize failures. 

From a reseller viewpoint, they have been forced in the past to source poor quality devices, with poor quality support, and little to no ability to customize , and also to source a suitable tracking platform that supports those devices.

These 2 facets are integral to the success and scaling of their business.   As a result, they have failed to grow as best as they could, have been scarred with legacy products and platforms, and have not been able to chase after larger clients as their businesses grow.

Digital Matter offers them a one-stop-shop with local conversation and situational understanding, custom development options, a wide enough range of products to keep their clients on one dashboard, and a product quality that is top drawer, requiring less support and saving down the line costs associated with poor quality products and solutions.
 

What are the benefits?

The benefits of our products and platforms in the tracking space are:
  • High quality accurate reporting of vehicle and equipment activities = usable data to improve business systems, work flows, and cost management
  • Asset utilization reporting
  • Driver identification and behaviour management
  • Speed monitoring
  • Tax reporting, risk mitigation, and above all service levels and improved profitability in a business.
For businesses with a range of non-powered assets fitting IoT asset location devices can allow them to:
  • coordinate their inventory better
  • improve service and maintenance scheduling
  • identify asset abuse / theft early and act
  • provide meaningful data to their account managers to better look after clients
  • provide meaningful data to their customers to allow the customer to better manage their resources, costing, and business optimisation
  • provide a mechanism to better manage asset rotation, utilisation and replacement
  • allows them to maintain higher service levels, happy clients
 

Explain the reseller model and how that works?

We have a network of resellers who are either stand-alone tracking companies or service level type companies who have diversified to offer tracking under their own brand as new verticals in their business.  An example would be security companies that also provide now provide our tracking to their clients, under their own brand.

Resellers purchase devices, connectivity and platform access from us, configure the devices to their client’s requirements and on-sell for a profit as well as offering installation services and 1st line of support.
Our OEM Server device management platform allows the Reseller to easily manage devices online.
Our Telematics Guru software platform is fully "white-labelled" allowing Resellers to put their branding on it.

Our business model is flexible and we also engage with companies that have their own software and just want to buy devices without our software platform.

9) Any other comments about the company / products / the market?

We believe that the technology in this space has evolved to allow all sorts of assets to be tracked, managed and monitored - at newly affordable prices.
Our battery-powered devices are now being deployed on assets that historically weren't economical to track - yet now provide a solution at prices that justify installing them and a platform to monitor and report on them.

We are seeing the industry broaden from vehicle fleet management to managing the logistics of the entire supply chain.