Offer valid through August 31, 2017
Nucleus is designed to improve family communication. No more texting across the house, or spending time troubleshooting Skype calls between your kids and their grandparents. Nucleus is easy to use for all ages: it's safe, secure, and capable of launching audio and video calls in under 200 milliseconds.
American: So what exactly is Nucleus?
Jonathan: Nucleus is a video intercom that allows you to instantly call from room to room in your house, home to home, or from device to mobile, no matter where you are. This lets you call the kids down for dinner, or check on Grandma from across the country - while you feel like you’re in the same room as her. Also, Nucleus is Alexa-enabled: customers can access the Amazon Voice Services platform to make a hands-free call, play music, answer basic questions, check traffic and more.
American: Tell us about the Nucleus team.
Jonathan: I recruited Isaac, our CTO, because he was one of the top video engineers in the US and I knew we needed the video quality needed to be first-rate. I met Morley, our President, thanks to American Airlines! Both Morley and my father live in NYC and used to commute to Toronto weekly for work using American Airlines. One day they both decided to go standby for an earlier flight and received the last two seats on the plane, right next to each other. They got to talking, and when they landed, my father gave me Morley’s card and told me to give him a call. After a few discussions, we were fortunate to invite Morley to join as co-founder and President.
American: What did you and your team do before co-founding Nucleus?
Jonathan: I was a consultant at Boston Consultant Group, where he created a software tool to help 800+ district managers optimize their pricing strategy for a multi-billion dollar utility; ran a COGS proposal for a national discount chain that netted $8M in negotiated savings on $300M in spend; helped design loyalty program for c-store chain; and built a model to predict worldwide demand for nuclear fuel through 2023.
Morley Ivers was the President and Chief Operating Officer at Maxwell Health, a fast-growing industry leader in health IT, is the first Health as a Service platform.
Isaac Levy was the Co-Founder and Head of R&D at Vidyo, and IT & Services company changing the way people communicate around the world.
American: How did you come up with the concept for Nucleus?
Jonathan: My wife and I were renovating an old house in suburban Philadelphia, and we wanted an intercom system to keep track of our very energetic three little boys. We asked the contractor for a quote, and it came back at almost $5,000 - for the same system my parents had installed twenty years ago! I went online and searched for “Wi-Fi intercoms” and was shocked that it didn’t exist. A few years and a lot of effort later, it now does.
American: What is the advantage for customers to choose Nucleus over similar products?
Jonathan: Nucleus is not your average video chat app. Our custom-designed hardware and software is built specifically for helping families stay close. Whether your family is across the home, or across the world, Nucleus makes them one touch of a button away. With a special wide-angle lens and conference call feature, your entire family can feel like they’re all celebrating a special occasion together. Also, Nucleus is safe and secure for your whole family: we use the same security measures that banks use to keep your money safe. Nucleus is a single-purpose device, there are no apps, no web browser, and no need to be technically savvy. Simply plug it in, connect it to WiFi, and you’re good to go.
American: Where is Nucleus available?
Jonathan: Nucleus works anywhere in the United States and is available for purchase at nucleuslife.com, at over 1000 Lowe’s across the US, and on Amazon.com, at amazon.com/nucleus.
American: Does Nucleus have plans to expand to other markets?
Jonathan: Because Nucleus is meant to help connect families, no matter the distance, we have already seen Nucleus being used in over 10 countries - even though we only sell it domestically. Over time, we will expand to many of those international markets.
Jonathan: Nucleus is marketed through retail channel marketing (support from Amazon and Lowe’s, who both consider this to be a flagship connected home product), as well as through paid search marketing, paid display marketing, and public relations support. There is also a natural word of mouth component - when a family installs Nucleus, they immediately want to add more family members into their Nucleus network.
American: What is one piece of advice would you give someone wanting to start a new business?
Jonathan: Any important meeting should be done in-person. Telephone calls are certainly easier, but if the outcome of the meeting could materially affect your business, make sure you do it in person. We often fly across the country just for a single meeting; sometimes it is a waste, and sometimes it substantially impacts the trajectory of our business.
Jonathan: Finding good talent. Any problem, no matter how daunting, can be faced down with the right people at your side. The turning point of the entire business was early on, when my co-founders Isaac and Morley joined; not only are they experts in their respective domains, but they don’t know how to quit. And similarly, when we hired some other incredibly talented individuals later on, it helped take the business to the next level.