How Can a Global Brand be Made Sitting Out of India?
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An entrepreneur on a mission to modernize traditional industries through innovation in enterprise software and SaaS, Manav Garg started Eka Software 14 years ago.
His passion to bring digital to commodity management; from agri-tech, digital energy digital mining, artificial intelligence and Blockchain, led to the inception of his digital commodity management platform that is driven by cloud, machine learning and analytics.
The platform helps agriculture, energy, metals companies and those mining globally to transition to automated business processes, link to their suppliers and customers and also do analysis of their businesses using software tools and apps. Among his most prominent works is work with startups to help them scale.
How did he do all of this? Entrepreneur India spoke with him to know more.
Garg says his biggest challenge has been to build a global software company in India without being in India at large.
“When I started, at that time, services were very big and nobody would wanted to join a product company. Lot of focus has come to software ecosystem as a product company. The biggest challenge still remains - how do you build a global company sitting out of India especially when your markets are all global and not majority in India,” Garg told Entrepreneur India.
He feels real success is when one establishes their brand globally such that hundreds of large companies can believe and trust your brand to deliver the value and the right quality of software products is there the biggest challenge.
Focus is Key
According to Garg, focus in everything. “I think my focus is more on wanting to deliver because challenge is to establish a global software company in India. So that has been the focus and if you get out of focus it gets really difficult to focus on both sides,” says Garg.
The 39-year old thinks leaders have to focus on so-called pocketing system or the DNA of the company and that is more important. He believes leaders have to focus to ensure that operating system and the value system of the company is built correctly and that sets the base for it to scale.
He counts being focused on the DNA and value system as his company’s biggest strength. Another big challenge is about people management, leadership and ability to build a global team.
“I think that’s the big challenge – if you are able to build a global team then I need to have a global CEO, who will be stationed in Australia. So how do you really deal and build a global team especially when you start young, you don’t have much experience. So I think the key tenant of leadership skills is the ability to build and run the global teams,” says Garg.
Entrepreneurship – The Road Less Taken
Garg believes entrepreneurship is not hierarchical. “That time when I started off, if you failed, people wouldn’t accept you. Fortunately, we have passed that stage. In India if you fail, jobs are there and I think expectations from the start-ups are very high and funding is much more available then it ever was,” says Garg,
So I think from a calling perspective, one basic simple test, is if you have understood and seen the problem then you have a way to solve the problem where you can use technology that is the time when I would start focusing and consider starting on my own he explains.
Second part is you may believe that you want to bring change in the health care segment for it to be disrupted, but for that, smart cities have to be built in India. So, there are a lot of opportunities in India. If you think you have a lot perseverance to live through ups and downs of entrepreneurship and your heart of steel which can face rejection and especially at the start. I think then it is for you.
So both ways you need to know that perseverance is the key for you and you are there to take ups and downs. It is fine to looking something to leave your job. I leave my job and figure out what I am going to start. The other option is when you understand and feel the problem, you can possibly give the solution, which others cannot.
Celebrate Your Success
Garg gave two kinds of perspective on this.
One is purely from product and technology perspective - First thing to understand is why valley companies grow so much because they took a very deep look at a fundamental way to solve a problem. So the approach taken by the technology is to build a platform. It often happens that when the number of problems that we have solved for the company is really exponential and we bring the cost down for the ultimate consumer.
For Eka Software, the fundamental innovation that the company has done is that it has created a platform where it can bring data, understand workflow and therefore can automate business and extension of cost that the client will have stored.
Second obviously, you feel very nice because you are following the core fundamental approach. We are trying to go with the coffee sector in India where we intend to digitize 300 farmers in 3000 acres of plantation. So you feel very nice to solve those fundamental problems because we are working in the core sectors.