“A narrow focus is credited with many a success, but there’s a broader vision behind it that gives our focus the right direction.”
A vast majority of us take life as it comes. We’re so focused on approaching events and current situations that we often don’t think in the long term. And that’s logical, because the present changes will be affecting us now. But broadening our vision leads to totality of being.
One such leader who’s creating a broader vision to manifest her goals at every step is Alicia Asin, CEO and Co-founder of a Spanish technology company, Libelium. Alicia holds the ability to look at the company from the top and see the whole thing working together. She perceives how different initiatives are moving towards the common strategy. Her esteemed focus has been the key behind Libelium’s success.
Technology that leaves a Mark on the World
Libelium’s technology is present in more than 120 countries worldwide, developing projects to monitor and improving efficiency in agricultural crops, with environmental control systems to prevent climate change, or through e-health control equipment to universalize access to health services in developing countries. Libelium’s wireless sensor platform has been deployed in projects of great economic and social impact to face the great challenges humanity faces in this century. In fact, Libelium sensors are helping prevent pests and improving productivity in agricultural crops, and also reducing pollution and traffic in several smart cities. Alicia, along with her tech team, has also helped universalize access to a health system to populations far from hospitals, and they have deployed sensors in space on board a satellite to study solar storms in collaboration with the NASA. The company has been involved in projects to predict volcanic activity as well.
In near future, the Internet of Things (IoT) will be able to incorporate transparently and seamlessly a large number of different and heterogeneous end systems, while providing open access to selected subsets of data for the development of a plethora of digital services. Libelium designs and manufactures hardware to deploy wireless sensor networks to create fast and reliable solutions for Smart Cities and Internet of Things market.
Alicia’s Vision for a Connected World
Alicia perceived the infinite market potential of IoT and was convinced that the development will be exponential. The Internet of things will affect all markets: cities, logistics, security, agriculture, health, home automation, energy –– these processes can be optimized, if its variables can be measured, analyzed and used in decision-making processes. The opportunities are endless, it takes a whole legion of companies and entrepreneurs that are dedicated to create sensors, install them, and create applications for a smarter world.
With this sense, Alicia developed a strategic plan for Libelium’s growth based on the construction of a solid IoT ecosystem for mutual collaboration, especially with start-ups and big system integrators to develop new smart solutions. She wishes to continue betting on generating an ecosystem of innovative and technological companies around Libelium. To support this ambition, her organization has an international network of more than 100 companies.
An Intuitive Leader & a Meticulous Mom
Alicia is a computer engineer, diligently focused on how IoT can change our world, starting with Smart Cities and Precision Agriculture, among other applications. She co-founded Libelium at the age of 24, and owing to her youthful appearance; her efforts were disdained by fellow executives. She describes an event at the bank as, “I remember the guys at the bank totally ignoring me when I was with David, my co-founder, even when he kept telling them I was the CEO. I also remember that at the very first trade shows we attended some guys thought I was the stewardess of the booth and did not want to talk to me.” And their smiles at the beginning of meetings, “oh, is that you the CEO?”
Alicia has no regrets on those mentions; instead, she uses them to emerge courageous with a thicker skin. She says, “You cannot get distracted with details when you have higher goals, just focus on what you want to get from people you are talking to.”
Alicia hopes that the world sees more women at executive positions in a natural way; not because they are applying for any quota, but because men and women can compete in equal conditions. Above all, Alicia envisions an empowered woman as someone without guilt for her success. Considering a broader prospect of life, pressure on women is higher than men. Alicia mentions, “I really miss my two daughters when I am traveling abroad, but I also think I am showing them the way. We need to empower our kids since they are born. I once received a fun note from the kindergarten-teacher of my elder daughter ‘your girl is so bossy, she organizes the full classroom!’ I sent her a note back ‘Thanks, I see my efforts to make her a leader work’.”
Alicia is a frequent speaker at international conferences on issues related to Smart Cities, the Democracy of the IoT based on big data and the importance of security and privacy in the new IoT era. She has also been awarded with various accolades for her entrepreneurial merits and technological innovation.
Envisioning Evolution with a More Focused Strategy
Alicia’s business vision is based on two keys: horizontal approach and interoperability. Libelium’s sensor platform is open source, horizontal and scalable, allowing other products to be developed based on their platform without having to pay for patents or trademarks.
Under Alicia’s able guidance, Libelium has begun a transformation, expanding from their impressive range of sensing hardware and trying to shift the focus onto their own IoT gateways, Meshlium gateways, and supporting software services. It is a revolutionary transition. Alicia is focused on providing the gateway services using Meshlium hubs, and expanding Libelium’s software services as well – all the while fostering a cloud partner ecosystem that can support the third-party sensing hardware. It’s a significant evolution in the expansion strategy.