InTech50: Innovative companies that made the cut
The InTech50 2015 is an annual listing undertaken by Bengaluru-based software product lobby iSpirt which gives 50 software product companies an opportunity to interact with a panel of chief information officers, product heads and venture capitalists across two days. This year’s event ends on 16 April. iSpirt received over 228 applications this year. The firms are then mentored and even given marketing support and, in some cases, funding to scale their operations. Mint profiles four companies in no particular order.
Helping small firms go online
ENTREPRENEURS: Jasminder Singh Gulati, Nitin Jain, Ronak Kumar Samantray, Neeraj Sabharwal
FIRM: NowFloats Pvt. Ltd
SET UP IN: 2012
EDUCATION: Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania; Indian School of Business; College of Engineering and Technology, Bhubaneswar; Schiller International University
The company started out making a mobile app that aggregated information on local events, restaurants and services providers. Six months later, the founders decided to change the business model. “To provide consumers with information, there had to be existing data. We realized that most of the small companies, retailers and services providers did not create their content and data,” said Gulati. NowFloats helps small businesses create and manage a website.
A company that wants a website to be created has to send a text (SMS) message. The first SMS asks for the name of the business, the second for its address and the third SMS prompts you for a URL. By the third SMS, a website is created for that company. The fourth SMS gives out details of the content that is to be put up on the website.
“We help companies create an online presence. The website has all information on products, price, toll-free number and other things,” added Gulati. The company charges an annual fee of Rs.20,000 and works with over 50,000 small businesses.
“Retailers, pickle shops, mechanics, these services providers are across various sectors,” he added.
The company raised a series A round of funding in February from Omidyar Network. It is looking to raise a series B funding by the end of this year. Gulati said that India has 15 billion small businesses, out of which 10 million need to have an online presence. However, only 5% of these actually have a Web presence.
ENTREPRENEURS: Shirish Deodhar, Hemant Joshi, Madhukar Bhatia, Swati Deodhar
FIRM: Sapience Analytics Pvt. Ltd
SET UP IN: 2011
EDUCATION: IIT Bombay, College of Engineering, Pune, IIT Bombay, Boston University
Shirish Deodhar is a serial entrepreneur. He founded and sold two companies, and the idea for his third venture came when his co-founders told him how difficult it was for them to assess and evaluate employee productivity.
“It is never difficult to know what’s happening in a 50-member team, but when the same team comprises of 500 people, managers lose track,” said Deodhar.
The company provides a software which is integrated with the systems of an organization. Basic details of the industry served, core functions, job nature and information requirements for the job are fed into the software, after which every minute is tracked.
“Our systems know that Facebook used by a media professional is for work and that by an investment banker would be for leisure,” he added. After the data is collated, it can be compiled to give weekly or monthly reports. “The data won’t say that an employee spent X hours on a social site or X hours on email. Instead, it will give a percentage break of work, leisure and other activities,” said Deodhar. The software is priced at $150 per person per year.
Sapience sells software to improve employee productivity to more than 60 clients and has over 100,000 users across seven countries. In India, customers include Zensar Technologies Ltd, KPIT Technologies Ltd and Clarion Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
In October 2014, it raised Rs.45 crore from Orios Venture Partners to expand its product portfolio and marketing initiatives. The Pune-based start-up had earlier raised an undisclosed sum from Indian Angel Network and SEED Enterprises in 2011.
ENTREPRENEURS: Vinay Nathan, Ranjit Nair, Yogesh Kulkarni
FIRM: Altizon Systems Pvt. Ltd
SET UP IN: 2013
EDUCATION: MIT Sloan School of Management; University of Pune; University of Pune
The founders are well-versed with sensors, cloud (term used for services that run on a network like the Internet) applications and Big Data (the trend of making business sense from the humongous amounts of data generated by individuals and companies), saw an opportunity in the industrial Internet of Things space, and this prompted them to start their own venture.
“The objective was to make existing products smart so that they give adequate information and data to the manufacturers or users to improve efficiency,” said Vinay Nathan.
A device is attached to the products made by a particular company, and it collects data and information, which gets synced through a cloud application.
“This application is mostly used by pump, auto component and motor manufacturers, as it gives out information on the workings under certain temperature and pressure conditions,” added Nathan.
Altizon has another application meant for assembly-line production companies. It is a cloud application that is integrated with operating systems.
The company charges anywhere between $2 and $6 per month per data extracted for the on-premise (along with device) solution.
Altizon currently works with 12 customers and is looking to raise a series A round of funding by the end of the year. The company raised its pre-series A round of funding from Hive India, Infuse Ventures and Persistent Systems Ltd in 2014.
ENTREPRENEURS: Rajesh Muppalla, Sanjay Parthasarathy, Satya Kaliki, Sridhar Venkatesh
FIRM: Indix Corp.
SET UP IN: 2010
EDUCATION: University of Pune; Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); RMIT University, Melbourne; MIT
Price index data, product awareness and commerce-related information was what the founders thought of providing. After conducting surveys and taking customer feedback, Indix was launched as a product catalogue firm.
“We list and provide information on all kinds of products that consumers use. Be it toothpaste, medicines, computers or telephones,” said Sridhar Venkatesh. The company provides its technology solution over the cloud by which any business or firm can view information related to specific products. All information relating to each product is in a proper format so that it can be used easily. “A Fortune 500 retailer uses our solution to know what are the products other competitors are providing, the price, number of sales and other kinds of relevant information,” added Venkatesh.
Indix provides detailed information on more than 700 million products across various consumer categories. Currently, the firm provides its services in the US and India. It is looking to expand to other countries as well.
The company raised $8.5 million in a series A round of funding from Nexus Venture Partners and Avalon Partners in March last year. It is looking to raise a series B round by the end of this year to fund its expansion plans.
THE OTHERS IN THE INTECH50 LIST
4Accelpro Technologies India Pvt. Ltd
The company provides a mobile virtual private network solution that offers firms secure remote access.
Akrantha Software Pvt. Ltd
The company provides a software solution that allows the testing and automation of mobile applications across devices. The software also allows in the preparation of projects and fixing of bugs.
The company has a proprietary analytics engine that integrates with multiple statistical packages such as R and SAS, allowing point and click user operations instead of coding.
Anunta Technology Management Services Ltd
Has developed an Application Delivery as a Service solution on its own proprietary platform.
Aujas Networks Pvt. Ltd
Aujas has a solution that helps companies manage information security risks by protecting data, software, people and identities in alignment with best practices and compliance requirements.
Cnergyis Infotech India Pvt. Ltd
The company’s product ZingHR is a management cloud solution. It is also working on a human resources payroll processing engine called Payroll-Cockpit.
It scours review sites and social networks to analyse sentiment and context from public data and location-based data, and understand behaviour from data that belongs to companies to build a cross-category graph.
CustomerXPs Software Pvt. Ltd
The company has a fraud management solution for banks in India that has the ability to interpret in real time each of the millions of transactions happening in a bank.
The solution delivers real-time retail insights.
Has a solution called ICareU that is a usage-based insurance solution, aimed at Indian motor insurance companies.
Drishti Soft Solutions Pvt. Ltd
Ameyo is a communications suite from Drishti that can be integrated in contact centres, and aims at improving efficiency and productivity.
Has a solution called Druva inSync that provides firms with a single view of all data in the company, regardless of where it was created or used within the organization.
The company’s solution shows firms where each application service is running, pinpoints traps and blind spots, and provides the baseline for more advanced infrastructure optimization, performance monitoring and machine-learning capabilities, all in real time.
42Gears Mobility Systems Pvt. Ltd
Its products aim to increase mobile workforce productivity and reduce costs in retail, manufacturing, healthcare, logistics and education.
The solution can help users view, annotate, discuss and collaborate over any file online—be it a presentation, a high-resolution image or even a video.
The company provides a software for customer care services that allows organizations to track consumer-related questions and respond to them.
Germinait Solutions Pvt. Ltd
The company’s product collects and analyses conversations in real time from public and private sources and converts them into industry-specific actionable insights and leads.
Godb Tech Pvt. Ltd
The company’s solution XLapp is a cloud-based service to develop and deploy mobile apps. Using Excel functions, users can develop and deploy a mobile app without any coding.
Ideal Analytics Solutions Pvt. Ltd
The company provides a self-service, self-deployable application tool for business analysis that enables business users to explore huge amount of data and produce personalized analysis, dashboards, reports and make informed decisions.
I-exceed Technology Solutions Pvt. Ltd
i-exceed has a product called Appzillon, which is a cross-platform suite to build apps for smartphones, tablets and browsers. It also offers consulting services.
The company’s product IDaaS Express is cloud-based identity and access management tool that helps address user provisioning, access governance and password management, among others.
Indusface Pvt. Ltd
Indusface provides security solutions to banks, financial institutions and retail companies to protect Web and mobile applications from online attacks and meet compliance standards.
The company’s solution uses behavioural science and gamification techniques to encourage participants to apply the tools and techniques they learn in workshops, once they are back to their daily grind.
Interview Master Technology Solutions Pvt. Ltd
It partners companies that use its technology solution to conduct video interviews and other hiring processes.
Julia is an open-source language under development for over five years and is anchored at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Its product Xploree helps users discover relevant deals, promotions, services and information on their mobile devices.
Built as a self-service cloud workflow software, KiSSFLOW is a ready-to-use business process management solution.
KPoint offers a cloud-based enterprise video platform that makes video content discoverable, mobile and social.
Nanobi Data and Analytics Pvt. Ltd
Nanobi provides data analytics services in healthcare, banking, start-ups and social media.
Olivo India Pvt. Ltd
Its integrated patient-centric care solution connects hospitals, labs, pharmacies and doctors to patients.
The cloud solution helps product teams develop interactive guides and websites.
Quintype is an editorial management and digital publishing service that runs on the cloud.
Qubole Data Service
The company provides a Big Data solution centred around Hadoop and its ecosystem that runs on the public cloud.
RateGain is a price recommendation engine for hotels. It continuously tracks over 11 Big Data elements to tell hotels how much they should price their rooms at.
Reverie Language Technologies Pvt. Ltd
Companies can integrate Reverie’s solutions into their existing services and create content in 11 local languages. For consumers, the services include providing the mobile keypad and converting the contact list in various languages through the app.
Seclore Technology Pvt. Ltd
Its software gives companies the ability to audit who can view, edit, copy content, and screen capture files for external use, file sharing, and the use of mobile devices.
Its software automates invoice validation, thus enabling real time analytics and transparency in all aspects of supplier governance and revenue assurance.
Storefront Display Technologies (India) Pvt. Ltd
Its solution Nifty Window uses content marketing and distribution to help offline businesses drive in-store sales across search, social media and mobile stores.
The company has developed a solution that allows easy and secure payments using sound and near field communication.
Trampoline Tech Pvt. Ltd
Its product RippleHire gamifies employee referrals and enables social recruiting.
Tydy is a mobile document format that harnesses the interactivity and sensors of mobile devices for a different document consumption experience.
The company provides a security solution that allows businesses to establish balance between increased security controls and rapid digital growth by creating an ecosystem of only authorized users, apps and devices.
Its mobile-first lead management system uses analytics to help companies prioritize leads and create better pitches to help quicker conversions and increase productivity.
Its enterprise-messaging app called TeamChat enables messaging for teams of any size. The app is available on all mobile and Web platforms.
Xurmo’s data analytics determines the natural structure of raw data and stores it in a patented format.
Zenatix Solutions Pvt. Ltd
The company’s solutions help monitor energy consumption patterns in various systems and appliances, and take actions based on its recommendations.