Company Profile: Sofistofish
Kirk Arsenault and Ken Driscoll are making waves with a new and innovative technology called Lobtrak.
Not too long ago, Kirk Arsenault was looking back on his longtime experience in lobster fishing and it didn’t sit right with him that a 2 million dollar operation was tracked with pen and paper. One day on the water, he came up with the idea to replace his old scribbler with a digital option.
After researching and creating a digitized prototype, he ran with it and eventually sought help to spread the word, where he met Ken Driscoll. Ken is a media consultant and content creator for Higher Design in Summerside, PEI, specializing in video and web content. The two came together to form Sofistofish.
While working with Kirk throughout the pandemic he became a believer in his idea and decided to invest and partner with Kirk. Together they are bridging the lobster industry with modern digital solutions with their new lobster tracking technology, Lobtrak.
Lobtrak is a lobster tracking technology that fishermen can use to record fishing efforts, catches, and locations while analyzing external environmental factors such as weather and more. Using real-time data, it will help capitalize on marginal gains, accomplishing more in less time as fishermen are able to maximize their time and resources while minimizing time on the ocean.
This breakthrough will enable fishermen to save time, have more efficient data at their fingertips and no longer have to run numbers through their head.
Kirk Arsenault (owner/founder): Sofistofish
If you know your product and your customer base. There’s nothing to feel nervous about. Know your stuff! – Kirk Arsenault on his advice for applying to the Ignition Fund.
Getting started, they just needed to find the right people and they now have an excellent team of subcontractors with a team of eight people employed in everything from design through to marketing and app development. Their development team is currently based out of Brazil, but they plan to eventually have their own in-house team on the island.
Regarding safety and efficiency, they want to “tool up these fishers” with current technology so they opted for hardware provided by Samsung as opposed using an app from the App Store. The biggest obstacle they faced was financial. With the design in their head, they needed funding to get it to their end users.
With just days away from their first shipment, Sofistofish have 100 units to be deployed and tested at an initial user discount until they can refine their product further. They will be hiring two to three students for market research to collect the data.
Sofistofish was one of last year’s round of successful Ignition Fund winners. We asked Kirk and Ken about their experience when applying for the Ignition Fund and both agreed the application process was smooth and easy. Having watched every season of Dragon’s Den, Ken said the highlight of the whole experience was the pitch. His advice for future applicants was to “know your product and your customer base. There’s nothing to be nervous about. Know your stuff!”