Women in Business

Personal Tragedy Never Stopped This Woman in Business

Meet Christina Domecq President of Spinvox

Family tragedy – the death of her mother – at a young age instilled in Christina Domecq the drive to pursue life 100% each and every day. Today Christina is co-founder and CEO of SpinVox and creator of the global Voice-to-Content category recognized as a $10 billion market. Her moment of professional inspiration happened in 2003, when she received 14 voicemails in one morning and asked: “Why can’t I get my voicemails as text?”. With characteristic tenaciousness and a passionate belief in the concept, Christina raised in excess of $200m to create and launch this new category of messaging.

Christina, 32, has driven SpinVox, recognized as the world’s largest privately-held speech technology company, to more than twentyfold growth in the last year –delivering voice-to-content services across five continents. A service that works on any network or handset anywhere in the world, SpinVox delivers and automatically converts any voice message to text to any screen (e.g. mobile phone, PDA, PC, TV), with services developed to appeal to consumers, businesses, carriers, media and Internet-based companies. 

Christina’s business savvy and understanding of the voice-to-content market resulted in the launch of the world’s first Voicemail-to-Text service – and the only voice-to-content service available in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian and Portuguese.

To help build and expand this new category of communications Christina and her business partner Daniel Doulton have worked tirelessly to educate, inspire and enable further innovations in the speech-to-text category – traveling the globe for speaking engagements, partner development, board meetings and high-touch customer events. As a result Christina is on the road at least 260 days a year. 

Long committed to bringing together business innovation and social responsibility, Christina has been instrumental in building SpinVox as a company with a conscience – leading with an innovative marketing approach that strives first to be a good corporate citizen and supporter of local and global community involvement. Through the years SpinVox has supported innumerable individual and global initiatives such as the MTV Staying Alive campaign for safe sex and HIV-AIDS awareness, a father/son South Pole Expedition team climbing to raise monies for Leukemia research, providing Beijing Olympics athlete Anna Hemming a voice blogging platform outside of China Internet restrictions to keep supporters updated, and ultramarathoner Charlie Engle a mobile blog for staying connected to home base and receiving words of encouragement from supporters while he was running across America, to name just a few. 

Also focused on creating a positive local impact. SpinVox UK headquarters is based in a former Brewery in a quiet town 30 miles to the west of London and has rapidly become one of the town’s biggest employers.  Many of those who are employed there choose to walk or cycle to work – a routine actively encouraged by Christina – and for those living further away flexible working and telecommuting further reduces the company’s carbon footprint.

Recognizing continued innovation is the key to business evolution and future success in 2008 Christina diversified SpinVox into the multi-billion dollar Unified Communications (UC) market, partnering with industry heavyweights Avaya and IBM.  And, in February 2009, the company opened up access to its innovative speech platform to the developer community to help speed time-to-market of mobile speech applications that have seen exponential global demand growth in the last six months and are predicted to be the key market driver for new mobile applications for handsets such as Android-and iPhone based platforms and as new VoIP services such as Google Voice roll out worldwide. And furthering the company global telecom partner reach, in June 2009 Christina signed a landmark deal with Telefonica International to bring SpinVox to 12 countries in Latin and South America – a deal some have estimated as worth $100 million.

SpinVox is sold through global carrier, VoIP and unified communications partners, and resellers such as uReach and SkyDeck. And because interest in the company in the UK has grown exponentially without a telecom partner, the company recently made available free voicemail-to-email accounts to anyone in the UK through the end of the year – recognizing in today’s credit crunch many people want to take advantage of the convenient SpinVox messaging service but perhaps just aren’t able to afford it.

In her personal life, Christina also applies her entrepreneurial drive to humanitarian initiatives such as helping build an orphanage in the South African village of Ubombo, an area beset with HIV-AIDS that has left many children without families. To further help the community Christina has started the UbomboJourney.org initiative to help bring fresh water solutions, through a partnership with SaveTheRain.org, and create new revenue streams to help bring financial and health stability to the region. As part of the Ubombo initiative, Christina is helping empower local pottery artisans and bakers to create sustainable businesses that create new jobs in the local community, provide local access to sustenance staples (whereas before residents had to travel miles daily for bread and water needs), and establish reliable revenue streams for the community. In addition, the initiative will help build and fund a local medical dispensary to support basic health needs that if left untreated often lead to serious health complications that many villagers could not afford to address.

Also committed to helping other entrepreneurs succeed, in June 2009 Christina biked across America 3,000 miles with a target to raise $500,000 for ACCION USA’s microloan and business training resources program that helps micro-entrepreneurs in financially underserved communities.

Recognized for her dedication to business innovation and social responsibility, Christina has been named by Wall Street Journal as a ‘Woman to Watch 2008’ and by CNBC as ‘2009 Entrepreneur of the Year’, and SpinVox was recognized by the World Economic Forum as a ‘Technology Pioneer 2009’.  SpinVox is Christina’s third company. She started her first company, an IT services business serving global brands such as Pfizer, Pepsi and Johnson & Johnson, at age 20.

For more information about Chrisitna Domecq and Spinvox visit: www.SpinVox.com and www.SpinVoxAdventurers.com

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