Making a Foray
Internet came to India in 1995. I got introduced to the Internet in 1996 when I entered college and wanted to send an email to a friend. On deeper exploration and on using tools like Lynx, IRC, and Email; I felt a sense of connectivity with the world. I could make friends worldwide sitting right here in Kolkata, that too in real time. I took an immediate liking to it. I soon ventured into digital business in 1997. I started with domain registration, web hosting, and website design.
Fast forward to 2000, when I returned to India after my post-graduation, the local market for technology services were in doldrums due to the dot-com crash. I again revisited the digital toolbox, and this time for digital marketing, and built a business which was born in India, but grew up in the globally connected Internet world. We were soon working for clients around the world and running our entire operations on the Internet – starting with marketing, sales, development, delivery, billing, and payments.
We have a partnership approach. We become part of our client’s business – in their good and bad time. We work as a team to make the most of the leverages they have and find solutions to the problems they face. We strongly believe in – If our client wins, we win.
We have the intrinsic ability to build scalable, secure and properly functional projects and products from our global clients. At no times, the ability to simply deliver projects as per the promise is a big differentiator, because it is as common as we may think. It is important to understand that the culture inside the company, reflects in the perceived brand outside the company. This has been our biggest differentiator – a humble, grounded, customer focussed, honest, technically sound business, which works behind the scene to make its client win.
Ahead of Competition
We operate out of all major metros of India, thus can provide seamless pan-India servicing to our clients and have the most extensive service range under one roof, making us a full-service provider. Thus, you do not need to coordinate between multiple agencies to get a simple project done. Our major delivery hubs are in Kolkata and Chennai, which helps us rationalize the costs, and hence enable us to pass the benefits to our clients.
Last, but not the least, we are fundamentally a digital company since inception; hence carry the DNA for digital. It is unlike many companies, who jumped into the bandwagon when the buzz of “Digital” became loud.
We are fundamentally a digital company since inception; hence carry the DNA for digital. It is unlike many companies, who jumped into the bandwagon when the buzz of “Digital” became loud.
Digital industry has grown exponentially. It has been phenomenal. However, we are still seeing the tip of the iceberg. Digital is synonymous with the transition at par with the agricultural age, industrial age, for mankind. The markets are maturing. However, we still get very excited at times, without thinking about the practical implications, and hence get into the hype (boom) and depression (bust) cycle. I think it will continue. At one point in time, it was big vs. small, then it became fast vs. slow, and now it will be digital native vs. non-digital.
The industry still needs to educate the talents and businesses in digital in the right way to make the most of this wonderful disruption, else they stand disrupted.
The Indian market has been a follower, but it is picking up. In India, most businesses still consider technology to be an “Expense” in their P&L books. It has to change to “Investment” in their Balance Sheet. However, things are changing for good. The change is visible, albeit slow.
We believe that eastern India is now on a growth curve compared to that of the rest of India. In fact, East India has the most to gain from digital forces, as they are great levelers. It provides the same benefit to all its users, and the onus is on the user to use it effectively. To help businesses and professionals use it in the right way, we have started organizing Digital Success Summit. We organized the first edition of the summit at Hyatt Regency Kolkata on 10th August earlier this year. The next year’s event is planned for 8-9th August.
The two major challenges we face as a global technology service company from Kolkata are :
1. Getting the right talent for strategic roles
2. Trust in a low trust world, in a low-entry-barrier industry, which results in some poor performers to bring a bad name to the entire industry
It is critical that the education system is revamped. If it is not done in time, the demographic dividend will become a demographic disaster. Besides this, we must teach each citizen about their responsibility to represent their country in a globally connected world. No two incidents are independent anymore. Every action by everyone has an impact on the other person – small or big.
Goals to Cherish
My organizational goal is the work on continuous improvement of the Indus Net group of businesses by getting like-minded people together, forging partnerships in new geographies, excel in quality and explore newer horizons as the industry evolves. We are also looking at decouple revenue-manpower growth which is a hallmark of IT service companies. We will do it through moving up the value chain, invest in IPs and Product development and create unique propositions which are business critical in select business verticals. I plan to keep learning, do some trekking and write a few books!
The future is digital. And we will be playing a critical role for ourselves and our clients in shaping the future. The future is also about pluralism and one single organization will not be able to control or shape it. Therefore, we believe in our strategy of partnership, agility and value creation more than ever before. We will continue to expand through shared ownership and strong partnerships with select organizations on a global stage. We will continue to invest in emerging technologies like AI, ML, Analytics, Robotics and Blockchain as they emerge. But we are not going to fly high in the hype. For us, the practical use of technology comes first.
Disclaimer : The following is an excerpt from the interview which was published in a special issue of Economic Times, Growth Makers of The East published 19th September 2019.