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Meet Sivan Sidney Cohen, P.E. of Ayyeka

Today we’d like to introduce you to Sivan Sidney Cohen, P.E.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Sivan. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I am a licensed civil engineer with a BSc. and MSc. in Civil Engineering from UC Berkeley and Stanford University, respectively.

My professional background begins in construction and project management.

My initial years, after graduating, were spent managing large-scale infrastructural projects such as airport construction, courthouses, and office buildings.

I moved to Israel in 2013 and was lucky enough to join an IoT startup called Ayyeka shortly after arriving. At the time, it was a two-man band working out of a garage. Now, we’re an international company with two subsidiaries, 42 employees, and 19 international distributors.

People often ask me why I went from construction management into the startup world — the rough and tumble of a small company seems a world away from the kind of streamlined workflows that need to be in place for major construction builds of the kind I was involved in to succeed.

I tell them that, as a civil engineer, first and foremost, I love construction.

Whether that takes the form of creating business processes or adding stories to a high-rise matter less to me. At Ayyeka, every day is a new challenge. But we’re constantly expanding our horizons and building our presence in the remote monitoring sector.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Of course, not!

Managing construction projects and piloting a startup’s growth are both full-on projects that require long hours, international travel, and managing a lot of stakeholder expectations. This is the same whether you’re managing contractors, customers, or employees. But mapping relationships and getting to know what makes the people I work alongside tick is in my DNA.

Professionally, transitioning across professional cultures, and moving from large corporations to small startups, is also always going to be quite a challenge. But it’s one that I feel I thrive in.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Ayyeka – what should we know?
Ayyeka provides industrial remote monitoring solutions. These use the Internet of Things (IoT), which is communication from unmanned computers to servers, to allow operators to deploy monitoring sensors in their infrastructure. A typical case could be a water network operator that wants to remotely monitor chlorine throughout their system. They used to either have to send engineers to manually take samples or rely on very large communications systems called telemetry systems. Neither was an ideal solution.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I’ve really enjoyed my career so far and was honored to have been named one of Water and Wastes Digest’s top 16 water professionals under the age of 40. I think that my time in construction management and the startup world have given me very different but equally valuable skill-sets. I’ve enjoyed the work I’ve done, the people I’ve worked alongside, and the experiences that both have given me.

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