Our Team | Julie Gibb, Chief Technology Officer with Sim Local

Enterprise Tranformed – TechPro, December 2019

“Our advice to others considering reinventing the way they do things to develop a digital product is this — I would strongly advise you pick your partners well.
Also, build out a minimum viable product – this allowed us to fully test and operate the system without the pressure to have to get it to market by a certain deadline,”

Julie Gibb, Sim Local

Julie Gibb is chief technology officer of Sim Local, a Singlepoint customer that engaged in a digital transformation project with the company that ended up being so successful, it was used by Google as a case study at a conference in the US.

“We were primarily a provider of physical SIM cards but last year we saw the arrival of eSIM technology on the horizon and recognised that this new development was going to have a big effect on our business model. Our existing technology allowed customers to top up and activate prepaid sim cards in seconds while standing in a retail store, but we needed to make ourselves ready for this new development,” said Gibb.

“We decided to embrace the change and to become the first integrated online store for digital SIM cards as they’re otherwise known. It’s a brand new technology that’s being built out as an industry standard as we’re getting our business ready to adopt it.”

Sim Local has a network of retail outlets at airports in the UK and Ireland but this new offering needed to be supported online as well as at these stores.

“From the beginning we had a clear management strategy that was underpinned by technical expertise both in house and through Singlepoint, our technology partner. It was able to draw on expertise from all over the world to support us on our journey as well as expertise we sourced ourselves to help us define what the technology looked like and how it all needed to hang together,” said Gibb.

“Because we took the time to strategize and plan what we needed to do, the roll out went broadly speaking as we expected, but there were also lessons learned on the way. I was recently invited to Google’s head office in California to showcase the online platform we built. The product team there were really impressed with the industry leadership we showed in doing this.”

What SimLocal managed to do was to crack the complexity of delivering an eSIM on demand directly to a customer’s device, something Google hadn’t seen done before anywhere else.

“It was all very much conceptual until we showed them it actually working in real time. The consumer can buy an eSIM from a network and download it onto their device. Getting this up and running involve liaising with the networks, the mobile operators and the handset manufacturers all via indirect channels,” she said.

“Our advice to others considering reinventing the way they do things to develop a digital product is this — I would strongly advise you pick your partners well. Also, build out a minimum viable product – this allowed us to fully test and operate the system without the pressure to have to get it to market by a certain deadline.”

To read the full article from TechPro magazine’s December 2019 issue, click here
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