A conversation with Christian Waizenegger, Vice President Sales and Business Development
Christian Waizenegger joined the Blickfeld management team as VP of Sales and Business Development in February. In this chat, he tells us what fascinates him about the Blickfeld technology, what a typical day at Blickfeld looks like, and what he plans for his team.
1. Can you tell us about yourself and your career so far in a few sentences?
My entire career path has been characterized by entrepreneurship and high-tech. From an early age, I learned a lot about a company’s entrepreneurial side through the family business. Still, I have always been interested in technology as well. This split can be seen in my studies as well since I studied business administration and physics at the EPF Lausanne. Afterwards, I ventured into entrepreneurial tasks in the fields optical sensor technology and 3D printing of metal. MESA Imaging is also worth mentioning here, which produced 3D Time of Flight sensors. Here I built up industrial applications and acquired and supported large customers.
2. What motivated you to join Blickfeld?
I was impressed by the Blickfeld technology. On the one hand, it offers features and advantages that I had previously missed in similar sensor products. On the other hand, I have been fascinated by MEMS technology ever since I first learned about them during my studies.
Besides, the founding team, their experience as successful entrepreneurs, and their vision were highly compelling. Therefore, I couldn’t let this opportunity pass and wanted to be a part of the team and play an active role in shaping the company.
3. What is your role at Blickfeld?
I am the Vice President of Sales and Business Development and responsible for all sales activities in the Industrial Sales division. My role is to ensure that the team is functioning well and has all the skills, tools, and resources required to successfully implement projects with our customers.
4. What was your first impression of Blickfeld? What has been confirmed in the last weeks?
I was received warmly and felt very welcome right from the start. I also learned about the helpful nature of the team during my first days. In general, I can say that Blickfeld has a lot of talented people working towards a common goal; building a powerful LiDAR with smart perception software!
5. What does a typical day look like for you at Blickfeld?
Most of my day is spent in meetings with customers, with my team, and in coordination with other departments. Of course, all of this currently takes place via video and telephone conferences. The largest share of the discussions is clearly with the customers since building a close relationship with them is key: How can our LiDAR sensors optimize their applications, what added value can we bring to their day-to-day work, and how can they draw insights from the data?
6. What aspect of LiDAR do you find particularly interesting?
Anyone who sees a 3D point cloud generated by a LiDAR for the first time is very impressed. I find it fascinating that moving MEMS mirrors can capture such precise data. But the versatility in applications is just as much exciting.
7. What impact do you think the technology will have in the next few years? Which industry holds the most significant potential for disruption from LiDAR?
The field of autonomous driving is undoubtedly one of the most critical application areas for LiDAR sensors. However, I am convinced that it is not the only one. Combining it with intelligent software is vital in industrial applications. It creates the possibility to analyze the point cloud in many ways and generate a valuable database for different applications.
8. What are your plans for business development and sales?
I am lucky to have joined an experienced and motivated team, which I would like to expand and support first and foremost. An important topic that will be on our agenda in the coming months is the internationalization of Blickfeld and the development of a distribution network. Furthermore, I see it as an essential task for our team to dive even deeper into different application areas and fully understand customer needs.
9. What is your favorite place (in the world)?
There are so many beautiful places in the world – this is a tricky question!
I grew up in French Switzerland, so I would choose Val Ferret on the Mont Blanc massif’s Swiss side. It’s where I’ve been coming to climb mountains and ski since I was a kid. Meanwhile, it has also become an important place for my children to experience French Switzerland’s culture. I highly recommend everyone to plan a vacation there as soon as it is possible again!