Calling all businesses...

By Candice Krieger, January 12, 2012

Iftach Ben Zvi is obsessed with start-up ideas. Unsurprising then that at the age of 70, he has come up with his latest: a video chat application for businesses.

TiviClick enables companies and organisations to offer a video chat option on their website so that visitors can initiate real-time communication with sales and customer support representatives.

Mr Ben Zvi, a former programmer at IBM, says: "I used to do a lot of consulting and found that when it came to meetings I was wasting time. People would often take calls and get distracted, and there was also quite a bit of travelling which took up time."

Consequently, Mr Ben Zvi began conducting meetings over Skype, which he says he found very productive and inspired him to set up TiviClick. Yet unlike with Skype, TiviClick does not require both parties to be registered and there is no software for "callers" to download.

"Only the re-cipient needs to be authorised," he explains. "The caller can even be anonymous if they wish - they don't have to use the video but can just hold an audio or text-based conversation."

TiviClick's Iftach Ben Zvi

TiviClick's Iftach Ben Zvi

Recently brought to market, the concept is proving popular for a variety of potential online applications such as conducting business meetings, offering therapy/coaching sessions, law advice, e-commerce assistance, interviewing job applicants - basically, says Mr Ben Zvi: "It's for anyone who wants to provide a face-to-face service or business meeting.

"We have found a lot of demand for this. I am sure about the potential.

"People don't like call centres. They are very robotic and you end up spending a lot of time on hold. People prefer to do things face-to-face - you can learn a lot about someone this way and provide better support. TiviClick is a catalyst to increasing customer loyalty and sales revenues."

He adds: "We have the technology to do things today that we couldn't do two years ago. It's exciting."

A veteran entrepreneur, Mr Ben Zvi has invested $500,000 into the start-up. He is seeking a further $1 million to enable market penetration.

He has been working in the software sector for more than three decades including stints at the Israeli Ministry of Finance and Technion Computer Centre. More recently he set up Intech Technologies and has been working as a consultant but says he is always thinking of new ventures. "I can't help it. I can't get up in the morning without coming up with some sort of new idea."

Last updated: 11:31am, January 12 2012