A Cosmopolitan Journey

by Klay Ketelle

Shilpa has the prowess of someone you want to listen to. Her demeanor is welcoming, advice is insightful, and has had a career that is ever expansive. Shilpa’s path has taken her from India to France, France to Japan, Japan to Canada and just about everywhere in between. After graduating from IIT (a massive accomplishment in and of itself), Shilpa’s first role was as a Trading Technologies Lead for J.P. Morgan India. With experience studying Physics/Mathematics while at IIT, it was a natural next step for Shilpa, as she oversaw statistical modeling of stock data and portfolios. Shilpa learned here the first step into her founding role; as human trading turned into computer trading, the incessant need to know the product roadmap in its entirety, a duality for both tech and business acumen, was essential for someone starting their own company. 

All Roads Lead to Tech

After Shilpa left J.P. Morgan to pursue work at Intel Corp. she immediately reflected on the change of pace, remarking how J.P. was inherently a “fast, dynamic environment,” whereas Intel focused on long-term projects. Transitioning from immediate results to ones crafted over months with oodles of monetary backing was certainly a step Shilpa had to take cautiously, but did so successfully. Strategies Shilpa worked on were for processes 3-5 years down the road, working on material that required an understanding of the entire supply-chain. Chip development is a full time, all-intensive project. Shilpa was Project Lead for Enterprise Datacenter, Storage NVM and Internet-of-Things Businesses, actively working on optimizing and improving chips. Her results concluded with a driving strategy that won Intel $1B revenue pipeline over 3 years.

Shilpa as CEO - Flyte Flies High

After spending time with Bell acting as the Senior Manager for Corporate Strategy, to being a Startup Advisor at Holt Ventures, Shilpa was ready to begin her pursuits as a CEO. Working alongside her life partner, Flyte became an idea and eventually a reality. Flyte’s goal was to automate the note taking process during conference calls, interteam projects, and everything in between. Shilpa learned, throughout her many roles, that note taking can jeopardize the actual learning process while in meetings. The average individual takes notes 40% of the time during discussion. Why not use that time actually discussing and save the note taking for someone else? 

Pandemic’s Oddly Advantageous Timing

The Pandemic proved to be an oddly advantageous time for Flyte, as around the exact time they were looking to begin training their model on data sets. What better data sets than the daily, multiple zoom calls Shilpa was making about Flyte? The model was run on these exact conversations, along with other independent meetings, over the course of months. While a beta is available, Flyte is still taking in data points to further improve accuracy. 

Flyte’s model works by first establishing topics/categories it will implement while it learns from raw input data. From here, the model sorts through what it deems to be substantial, or useful “chitchat” and turns this into an archive of information-rich data. Flyte then summarizes the tangible information, creating reports that are concise, packing a meaningful punch with its useful information. It picks up action items in text, converting them into information, such as Calendly Links or a Google Sheet, and will even be compatible with other UI/Agenda-based platforms.

What Flyte Does Next 

Shilpa reminded us that Flyte is very much a “customer-oriented company,” building Flyte entirely based on user feedback sessions. Though finding these moments for one-on-one feedback can be tricky, it has been a rewarding experience, and a successful endeavor all in all. Shortly after we finished Shilpa’s episode, she took to her LinkedIn to announce Flyte’s next partnership with TechStars, officially becoming one of their portfolio companies!

Shilpa saw the present as the right time to make her dreams a reality. With her previous track record, we will be seeing much more of her in the near future. 

About the Metabob Podcast series: 

This new, weekly series will take a deep dive into the tech ecosystem, putting real people and explanations behind some of the common household ideas and misconceptions about the tech industry.

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Guest(s) Featured in this Episode

  • Shilpa Sharma, CEO of Flyte
  • Episode Resources