In our latest real estate tech entrepreneur interview, we’re speaking with James Segil from Openpath.
Who are you and what do you do?
I’m James Segil, and I am the president and co-founder of Openpath, an LA-based startup which creates smart, secure physical access systems for the modern office. I’m an entrepreneur with proven experience having built and sold three successful technology companies.
I run day-to-day operations and business development at Openpath, where we are helping companies reduce common touch points and make a contactless user experience as part of a new, healthy post-pandemic environment.
What problem does your product/service solve?
My fellow co-founders Alex Kazerani, Samy Kamkar, Rob Peters and I had the idea for Openpath when we grew tired of forgetting our office keys at home and were frustrated with having to carry multiple badges to get into buildings. We were also worried about security at work given the state of the world today. We started Openpath in 2016 because saw an opportunity to really improve the office access and the keyless-entry experience by making it more frictionless and secure. We saw that we could use our phone to open the doors instead of having to carry a keycard.
Our solution combines hardware and enterprise, cloud-based software to improve the experience for people accessing buildings with hands-free access and mobile credentials, all through a beautifully designed product. Openpath’s access control platform helps companies across a range of sectors including commercial real estate, manufacturing/industrial, offices, retail, schools, gyms and places of worship, and supported over 5 million unlocks a month.
What are you most excited about right now?
Getting America back to work safely with Germ-Free access to your building and office. We are currently laser-focused on helping building owners, managers and tenants to provide employees and visitors secured access without touching any physical surfaces.
We just announced our “Wave to Unlock” feature, through which users can wave their hand in-front of a reader from a safe distance in order to unlock an entry, removing all surface contact. The patented Triple-Unlock technology works over WiFi, LTE, and Bluetooth, and guarantees a fast and reliable connection, which is critical for efficient and safe access. This is part of our offerings to help companies facing demands to update workspaces for returning employees to work.
We’re hearing from building owners, tenants, city planners, architects, and security consultants that this touchless solution is calming some employee concerns about returning to the workplace as a touchless, hands-free, germ-free experience.
What’s next for you?
Beyond the COVID-19 response, we are looking for new ways to improve the day-to-day work experience of every worker in the world through frictionless access. Our obsession on user experience drives us as we want people to experience the built world in a more personalized and secure way.
What’s a cause you’re passionate about and why?
I’m passionate about reducing homelessness, which is how I became very involved with The Giving Spirit, a grassroots charity that assembles survival kits for the homeless here in Los Angeles. We have helped over 40,000 homeless since we started and continue to focus on helping those who are the most in need during this difficult time.
Thanks to James for sharing his story. If you’d like to connect, find him on LinkedIn here.
We’re constantly looking for great real estate tech entrepreneurs to feature. If that’s you, please read this post — then drop me a line (drew @ geekestatelabs dot com).