For Richard Vandy, the past year has been quite extraordinary. When the pandemic hit, most people thought it would be just a few weeks or months. Eighteen months later, we’re still feeling it. It has been a period of challenge but also of opportunity, to reassess and reevaluate things you may not have appreciated beforehand – work, personal life, everything.
When it comes to Richard, he has two sides – work and home. At home, he’s blessed with three children from his former marriage – Katherine (17), William (15) and James (13) – and his wife (who also happens to be BagsID’s own Head of Digital Marketing, Caroline Blacklock-Vandy). They love to travel around the world, exploring and immersing themselves in new cultures. In fact, they’ve visited so many places, he has a tough time picking a favorite.
“I’ve been very fortunate working for airlines and getting to travel so much of the world. Different places provoke different memories. I enjoy the U.S. and all that it has to offer, I also love the Caribbean. Traveling further East as well, Malaysia, Singapore – I really don’t have a favorite,” Richard explained. “I guess it depends on your mood. I grew up with a beach holiday background thanks to my parents. As I’ve matured and become more inquisitive, I enjoy exploring places, seeing the local culture.”
Which brings us to his work side. Richard started in aviation in 1997 and he’s been in it ever since. Fifteen years with British Airways, then with Etihad, and most recently with Amadeus. “Even though that seems like a long time in most industries, in aviation I’m still considered a youngster,” he humored. “The biggest opportunity that happened in the past year was the opportunity to work with BagsID. Before then, I was with Amadeus who was very much impacted by COVID-19 globally. But, of course, every downturn can also be an upturn.”
“Joining BagsID was a no-brainer. It was becoming more apparent to me, looking after baggage systems, that the world of baggage is somewhat outdated, stuck in the mud, built on 1950s-60s technology. I could see exactly what the vision of BagsID was – to almost rip up the rulebook and start again without necessarily changing the processes that take place,” recalls Richard about his decision to work with BagsID. “It’s bringing new technology to an old world. That’s what I particularly liked, something totally new, totally different. The benefit of baggage recognition through AI and computer vision is a gamechanger for lost baggage, processing… the opportunities go beyond that as well, like working with insurance companies, customs, et cetera. It is already beginning to prove that this is the way forward in terms of baggage processing.”
Now, he’s totally engrossed in the BagsID vision and is 100% hands on, focused on taking the company to the next level. When asked to explain his role as V.P. of Systems Integration in ten words, he said it perfectly on the first try: “Ensuring BagsID technology seamlessly integrates with all airport systems worldwide”.
He also shared what excites him most about BagsID and all work in general:
“Doing a job and seeing it done properly. If mistakes are made, you learn along the way. There’s nothing more rewarding than at the end of a project – whether home DIY or work related – to take a step back and say, ‘I did that, and it was done properly.’ It’s not just about the pat on the back, it is challenging yourself and improving things. I also love seeing other people develop as well.”
Richard is thankful for the past year, despite its COVID-19 challenges. “Not just coming out of the coronavirus and lockdown, beginning to see the end in sight, but it ironically has been an opportune time for BagsID. We’ve been able to make the most of this pandemic by continuing to develop our AI computer vision technology. The future is very exciting!”
We agree Richard, it is an exciting time with an exciting company offering an exciting, industry-disrupting solution. We’re glad to have you (and your wife) on the team. Here’s to changing the world, one bag at a time. Stay up to date on future Team Talk interviews and other BagsID news by following us on LinkedIn or visiting www.BagsID.com.