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50 Smartest Companies Of The Year 2018

Making a Difference: Orbit GT nv, a Mind-blowing 3D Mapping Company, Gets Set for New Global Ride

thesiliconreview-peter-bonne-ceo-orbit-gt-nv-2018“Our expertise is not only about great software solutions. It is also about optimizing the customer’s workflow, creating easy access to complex data, democratizing the availability and use of 3D data, making life easier for tens of thousands of users involved”: Peter Bonne

The use of 3D mapping technology has become a standard in many industries. Incorporating the technology into your business model can expand the flexibility of your business and highlight high-tech services.

Everyone from surveyors, to architects are using the technology to effectively monitor progress in real time, saving money, but more importantly saving time.

There are constantly exciting advances in this field. For instance, 3D mapping is beginning to shift toward a merge with virtual reality, giving users the ability to experience an environment in real time from the comfort of their home, office or from any location.

In view of the above mentioned, we are thrilled to present Orbit GT nv – a world leader in solutions for exploiting 3D mapping content in managing, viewing, extracting, publishing, sharing and embedding in workflows, either desktop or cloud-based. The company specializes in 3D mapping solutions for mobile mapping, UAS mapping, indoor mapping and aerial oblique mapping, replacing the big data dilemma with ease of use.

Orbit GT was incorporated in 1972 and is headquartered in Lokeren, Belgium.

Interview Excerpt: Peter Bonne, CEO

Why was the company set up? And how did you expand your company and its offerings over the years?

The company was founded as spin-off of a traditional map making company, with the sole intention to innovate the map making process. Back then, 1972, it incorporated R&D for hardware and early software.

Today, that spirit is still key, where creativity and innovation are the driving forces behind everything we do. The focus nowadays is on software-only for high-end and state-of-the-art solutions for complex and massive 3D mapping data, bringing the challenges down to easy to use software tools.

What challenges did you face in your initial years? What can your peers learn from it?

The company we are today is totally different from when we started. We run now as if we are a 2014 startup – with a strong focus on a global niche of 3D mapping – a niche but so fundamental in everything Smart City related. The IoT people just don’t know it yet. 

Is your company a ‘leader’ or a ‘follower’? Do you formulate your own core values?

We are leading through our innovation and vision on the market and its future evolution. For sure, there are other smart people out there, but the combination of vision, technical knowledge, and many years of experience give us a unique advantage that newcomers will find hard to beat.

Fostering a culture of feedback is crucial to the success of every organization. How is this true with your company?

Over the last years, we have established a global network of 60+ Resellers. They are our first-line in customer feedback. Next to that, our lines are always open for in-depth inquiries, special projects, and any other customer success initiative we need to take. Next to development, our customer support team is the largest team in the company.

A company to be one the SMARTEST, its employees must be open-minded and creative, they need to feel they have a decent outlet for sharing their observations and ideas, is this true with your company?

Our office culture is innovative and energetic, and everyone periodically rolls up their sleeves to help co-workers when needed, regardless of their titles. We are looking for employees who share a similar sense of purpose as it is imperative to surround yourself with great teams. Having teams that you can rely on allows you to maximize your time, your efforts, and your quality output.

How does your company contribute to the competitive global IT platform at large?

Our specific business niche might not be well known or well understood, even amongst your readers.  But when we say that a 3-dimensional map is the foundation of a true Smart City, and this 3D insight is required to operate and manage that Smart City, everyone will understand that our solutions for Smart Cities are essential and fundamental. 

Do you have any new products ready to be launched?

As our traditional portfolio is desktop and server-based, we are migrating to a SaaS platform just like many of our peers.  This platform ‘3D Mapping Cloud’ is being developed at lightning speed and new releases come online almost every month.

As a question on sustainability, where do you see your company a couple of years from now?

Our focus towards core 3D mapping products, platform and solutions, puts us at the fundaments of tomorrows society, especially regarding the management of Smart Cities. There is a lot to do in this domain, and a huge market being created as we speak. We see our role in providing the best platforms on which others can build, and anywhere along that process of raw data collection, processing, modeling, up to sharing and embedding in management workflows. Processes will be empowered by deep learning or AI, and these developments will get their place in our future portfolio.

The Brain Behind The Operation: A Brief Background

Peter Bonne, CEO: Peter Bonne has a huge experience in many domains of spatial applications going from photogrammetry, spatial datastructures, datamodelling and geo heuristics. In Belgium, he is one of the pioneers in GIS technology.

Currently, Mr Bonne serves as Chief Executive Officer of Orbit GT nv.

“3D Mapping Cloud is no doubt the most powerful a versatile online platform for large 3D resources.”