Our Story

It all began with Samer El Gharib, who tried every possible way to save himself and stop smoking after being a smoker for over 20 years.

Several years ago, he was reading a book that encouraged the smoker to stop smoking cold turkey called, “The Easy Way to Stop Smoking” by Allen Carr. While reading, he thought that it would be impossible for him to stop in such a harsh and abrupt way, having tried it before and finding the withdrawal symptoms too tough to overcome.

He soon realized that no one starts smoking a whole pack; everyone starts smoking one cigarette and gradually increases their intake.

The Need for a New Device

Samer later came across B.F. Skinner and the Behaviorism theory where he learned that anyone can teach anything by a carefully designed program of step-by-step reinforcement. From this, Samer came up with the concept of a device that would lead the way in helping smokers quit smoking by utilizing an algorithm that coaches the smoker to gradually reduce smoking. Slighter was born.

After thoroughly brainstorming his amazing idea, Samer was convinced that the device should be a companion for the smoker, and since the lighter is a mandatory tool for all smokers, it became clear that a new kind of lighter would be the device Samer envisioned.

The next morning, Samer started searching for lawyers to have a patent as soon as possible. On the 31st of October 2015, the company was founded, and the dream is becoming a reality.

The First Prototype and the
Move to London

Along the way, Samer met a talented engineer, Mo, who helped him develop the algorithm and create a rough prototype that actually worked surprisingly well.

Together, Samer and Mo went to London in early 2016 with the UK-Lebanon tech-hub where they lived for 6 months taking intensive courses with UCL.

Dr. Sam Bakri was a mentor for Slighter during that period, and he helped the company with many connections, like introducing Slighter to the “Department of International Trade” (DIT) where Slighter was considered as part of the UK Ecosystem of Startups.

There, Samer thought to introduce Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) methods to his solution and met Christina, the young skilled psychologist who came on board to introduce CBT to the program to enhance the experience of the user.

The Slighter Family Grows

During this time, Samer also flew to Boston and won the prize of Harvard Arab Week after pitching in front of an esteemed jury at Harvard University.

Samer and Mo had to struggle with keeping Slighter very small in size while having so many components, but in the end, and with the help of our designers, they made it to be as slick and trendy as possible.

After London, Samer started working with Mo full time on Slighter, though he needed an advisor to support him in the strategic part of the project. It was then he met Ray, who quickly became a member of the Slighter family, and Katya, who took the position of COO as well as overseeing business development.

Slighter next needed a proof of concept, so they started working on the testing by producing 300 prototypes in-house for the testers, which successfully resulted in a crossboard reduction average of 35% of their smoking habit over a period of 3 months.

The Slighter Effect Begins to Take Hold

Then came Bigbooster, where the Slighter team won to be among the finalists in Lyon, France.
There, Samer and the team discovered CLARA, the cancer center of Lyon, which led them to meeting Pr. Couraud, who nominated Slighter to run a clinical testing with lung-cancer patients in collaboration with the French National Cancer Institute (INCa), Hygée Center of Cancer Prevention, and the Institute of Cancer in Lyon, France.

During this time, Samer also met Wissam, the data mining expert who quickly became part of the Slighter family.

In September 2018, Slighter’s company was selected as TechCrunch Top Picks for TC Disrupt SF 2018 that will be held in San Francisco. Afterwards, in November, the team will be representing Slighter at the Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal.

Samer believes that a bright and motivated team can reach the stars. The dream of Slighter is becoming more and more tangible, thanks to everyone in the family who is working so hard to make it happen.
info@slighter.com

Slighter LLC

10319 WestLake Drive, Suite 150
Bethesda, MD 20817