HISTORY - from the pest controller
to the IoT pioneer
Trade with pest control professional products in the DACH region. Poisons don’t really work anymore. Environmental impacts still entirely unknown/downplayed. We were looking for more efficient methods.
Instead of poisons, we used traps. Enormous control effort with daily control (animal welfare). The birth of the digital mousetrap prototype. Also the birth of BMS – the digital documentation system from our sister company Biotec. Perhaps a world first, but in any case a pioneering achievement that is now standard in the professional segment. Futura sets the foundation stones and builds the vision for the next 20 years.
Report at Galileo on the digitization of our sector. Set up major customers in Germany with our first digital traps, which auditors and customers loved. We knew this was our future and we were pioneers out of idealism.
We build the largest mousetrap in the world and it is listed in the Guinness Book of Records. Worldwide attention in TV and newspapers. The idea came from Daniel Schröer – then still in high school – the family friend of founder Oliver Klute, who started at Futura in 2013 and has been running the business with Oliver since 2016.
Tunnel traps, boxes, traps, bait – we try to professionalize trapping and buy products worldwide, test them with our partners and realize that the perfect solution does not exist yet. Futura launches first B2C store www.futura-shop.de and generates first sales online.
What is now called IoT (Internet of Things) was then called M2M (Machine to Machine) communication. Futura invested large sums in gateways, research projects and more for “eMitter Pro” – still the bestseller for the large-scale digital trap industry today. The Plague Control industry shakes its head and considers founder Oliver Klute “crazy”. A few years later, the same people are shopping for digital traps and more at Futura.
Nutella in traps? How about a professional solution? The birth of NARA® – today an international bestseller, sold millions of times. Futura again invested in development, tooling and production in Germany. The first NARAs were introduced under the Edialux brand in Benelux at a trade fair and were sold in over 10 countries in the first year.
SWOPBOX – the first hygiene box for traps, digital sensors and synthetic baits from Futura, made for the food industry. Again, the same sequence: first ridiculed, but then quickly sold thousands of times and recommended by IFS and AIB, it represents a new type of Pest Control, an innovation from Futura.
The company is still absorbing high costs for development. Distribution in the USA is being investigated, at the invitation of world market leader Orkin. High hopes for global success, millions of digital pitfalls. But reality teaches us that “good things take time”. Orkin is still 100% analog on the road today. A reflection of our conservative sector.
Full speed ahead. Daniel Schröer joins the company and builds up international sales together with Oliver Klute, and together they continue to develop the digital products.
Launch of own eMitter Cloud in Germany as a mammoth project, after Futura had previously worked with an Israeli partner. The friendship with the Israeli company still exists today. Futura wins Best Product Awards from Pest Magazine and has worldwide attention in magazines and newsletters.
NARA gets growth: meat, fish, chocolate and mango flavor come to the still most popular NARA flavor: vanilla. Furthermore – after many years of research and development – Futura launches a new family member “Gorilla Traps”, the world’s first §18 IfSG certified humane trap for mice and rats.
And, Futura launches eMitter Outdoor. The first fully digital rat trap, after Futura had built many prototypes in recent years. The first solution radioed on Long Range. A technology that many other companies jumped on in 2020 and that Futura first brought to market.
Futura’s products, NARA Spray, Gorilla Traps, eMitter BEEP and Runbox are selling very well, especially in Europe, through leading distributors such as Killgerm, Pelsis and Co – the market is ready for new innovations and is asking for them. Futura doubles again and the team grows to 9 employees.
The year 2017 is also marked by a new venture: Futura sees e-commerce as an important future technology, also in B2B, and is opening the Amazon store as well as new online stores in B2C and B2B. In addition, the two managing directors decide for the future not to go to trade fairs and to invest everything in online marketing. Away from sales to advice and information. Products should sell because they are good, not because of good distribution. Sustainability, therefore, not only in the products, but also in the growth strategy.
GreenHero is born and initially sells repellents and the first pet care product on Amazon. The demand blows Futura away.
eMitter Outdoor is launched as a DIRECT solution with 2G, NB IoT. Sales, even through the trade, are very good and the technology – also thanks to new software and algorithms (artificial intelligence) – has been greatly improved so that there are no more false alarms. Since the DIRECT series does not require repeaters and gateways, sales can be scaled more quickly and Futura is growing strongly, especially in the “long tail” = SME of Pest Control. Futura almost doubles again and now already counts 14 employees plus 2 freelancers.
GreenHero makes almost 600.000€ turnover after such a short time and has almost 100.000 satisfied customers with over 30 products. A new pillar of Futura is e-commerce, as the strongest growth business. Facebook, Google and inbound marketing is introduced. Hired and built a marketing and online team.
Oliver Klute takes over the operative business at the sister company Biotec again and works out the strategy for the group of companies together with Daniel Schröer. Everything is under the sign of digitalization and the two companies are developing very well. 20 employees and 6 freelancers work like entrepreneurs in the company and drive the growth. Futura joins with the Federal Environmental Agency and other international industry stakeholders to establish the “NoCheRo” advocacy group to establish and strengthen chemical-free pest control alternatives.
Schröer and Klute regularly visit Brussels to exchange ideas on how to avoid the use of hazardous chemicals; the green and digital wave is welcomed with open arms.
Futura has invested heavily in development in recent years and is about to introduce important new products digitally. The website is relaunched with many online marketing tools. Futura is breaking new ground in communication in its sector, making a successful podcast, video series and blogs with leading CEOs, CTOs and innovators from the industry with “Talking Pest Management” and gaining the attention of the international press.
Corona is coming. E-commerce grows over 100%. B2B is growing steadily, as before. The two managing directors repeatedly tested resilience and questioned business models early on – with success. Futura continues to grow undeterred. The shift from traditional work to “new work” and “remote work”, as well as the digital tools that were introduced years ago, also ensure that Futura can continue to push forward without restrictions. Efficiency increases, despite the fact that 90% of employees are now in the home office. Futura introduces “home office forever” and allows its employees to work independently from home. With very good success: Futura continues to grow and hires 4 new employees “remotely”.
Products like “RatCap” are born and all product lines are revised. NARA gets eco-friendly packaging, eMitter gets a new app, Gorilla Traps gets fiberglass and soon a new family member.
News from Borchen
Futura is off to a good start this year with a rapidly growing team and more than doubling its headcount from 2020.
We are completing the construction of our 6 EV charging stations, powered by solar energy from our roof, and replacing our internal combustion parking lot with 2 all-electric vehicles and 5 hybrid cars, which we all love and fit very well with our philosophy.
With the 3G strategy (tested, recovered or vaccinated), we can finally have a small outdoor company party at a water ski lake. It was one of the most positive days we’ve all had this year, and our team became a group of friends, buddies, and partners who strive for the same things in their careers and personal lives.
We are proud that with Futura we are not only fulfilling great missions in the B2B and B2B world, but also empowering young people, giving them a home, security and a job that becomes their passion.
The best comment we’ve received is this anonymous quote, “My friend told me that I’m super happy since I’ve been working at Futura and that I should tell my boss so he knows they’re doing the right thing.”
GreenHero continues to double sales in the greenhero.de webshop and on Amazon thanks to great fans and influencers who stand up for animals that would otherwise have been treated with bad or toxic biocides or other products, e.g. against ticks or fleas. We are very proud of this and see GreenHero on its way to becoming THE health brand for pets.
The Futura Shop has doubled in size again, and with the new product team, not only are the existing products selling much better, but we are also introducing over 50 new products from our own brand and quality friendly brands.
Futura Shop will be THE address and platform for pest problems in your home with the best possible and most environmentally friendly products available worldwide, thanks to our over 25 years of B2B industry knowledge.
Both GreenHero and the Futura Shop received a new webshop design and new photos and videos for the products. After the “relaunch” our sales went up like crazy.
With our senior sales team consisting of Judith, Sebastian, Guillaume and Thore, we see a healthy growth in our B2B business and a further transition to agile and digital processes with our international customers and partners.
Futura magazine is born. It’s not a catalog, but it features our key products, case studies, interviews, new products and much more you didn’t know about Futura.
Futura B2B continues to build the present and future of our industry with solutions like NARA® that replace over 20,000 tons of rodenticides (poison) in Italy alone.
We are very proud to be the beacon and trendsetter that our industry likes to follow when it comes to more efficient pest control and greener solutions.
Our patented new IoT solutions have been undergoing intensive testing since 2019 and will soon be launched… Stay tuned and subscribe to our newsletters…