Mr SMS – Pieter de Villiers of Clickatell

Posted by on Apr 30, 2008 in Business, Entrepreneurship, South Africa, Technology

Seems like Pieter de Villiers is a good name for South African success stories. There’s the rugby player, the hurdler, the business consultant, and the IT whiz. De Villiers (the whiz) is the CEO of Clickatell, the first (and leading) global high-speed service provider of bulk SMS messages. Its 8,000 customers can connect in over 200 countries. (Company motto: “Any Message, Anywhere”) Clickatell allows a business to communicate with its customers, suppliers and staff using a variety of formats (fax, land-line phone, pager, IP connected devices, and of course, cell phone) through a technology that is easy to use. Pieter and three other businessmen founded the company in 2000 in South Africa. Since 2006 Clickatell’s headquarters have been in Redwood Shores, Calif., but it has an office in Cape Town and in the United Kingdom. Clickatell just announced that it was selected by several leading health care organizations to improve communication with their patients. The organizations are using Clickatell to deliver critical information by cell phone. For example, in the United Kingdom a user can text “stop smoking” into their cell phone, then receive relevant information on kicking the habit. In the United States, a Georgia-based health care company is using Clickatell to help doctors and patients interact. Hospital discharge instructions, delivered by cell phone, can be more readily complied with. Other doctor’s orders can also be delivered by cell phone. Pieter started his career in 1997 in the optometry field and has sales, new business management and product development experience. In 1999 he was hired by Micrologix to identify Internet opportunities and to manage the organization’s ecommerce. Pieter also participates in several forums including Wireless Internet Caucus, GSM Association, and Open Mobile Alliance. Information on Pieter’s personal life isn’t readily available but you may get a chance to meet Pieter and the Clickatell group if you are attending the African Banking Technology Conference in Lagos, Nigeria May 7&8, or the NACHA Payments 2008, being held in Las Vegas May 18-21. Clickatell is participating in both events. Clickatell also powers the messaging for the world assembly of 140 parliaments.

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