Could you provide us with a brief about your responsibilities at Unicel Technologies?
Heading Unicel Technologies is a very exciting opportunity as it provides a bird’s eye view of the growth of markets in India hence allowing me to steer the company in the correct direction. The role itself is to take care of every aspect of business, be it operations, sales and marketing, strategy, finance, creation of company culture, human resources, hiring, regulatory compliance, etc. — it all falls under my purview at the end of the day.
Which has been your most memorable assignment till date?
Heading Unicel has been my most memorable assignment. It has been a great combination of excitement and challenge in trying to steer the company through 5 continuous years of growth and innovation while riding out the ups and downs of the Indian market.
Which industry verticals are fastest and slowest adopters of Cloud Communications?
BFSI & E-commerce are the fastest growing verticals. E-commerce in particular has seen amazing growth as recently we have seen huge rounds of funding for various players in the e-commerce domain, which has led to significant investment in customer acquisition and expansion, and cloud communications are an important enabler of such activities. The government sector has been a slow adopter, though lately there has been a huge spike in how the government is using Cloud Communications to reach out to the people. For example Unicel recently launched a program along with Tamil Nadu Electricity Board to provide SMS alerts to its customers. We have also seen the new Modi government make extensive use of SMS campaigns as a key communication tool.
Which industries have the highest potential to adopt Cloud Communications solutions? Which areas can be looked upon to start implementing Cloud Communications?
The need of Enterprise mobility is omnipresent. Government is a key sector where adoption will only increase. Other areas such as retail, pharma, and manufacturing also have high potential to grow and leverage on Enterprise mobility platform. Though this mainly depends on the level of integration of these services at their end.
Why Unicel Technologies have entered tier 2 cities?
We received a lot of traction from smaller cities where enterprises have set up their regional offices and for local SMEs where there is a need for our services on a daily basis. As we have built our technology platform to be highly scalable and easy to use, we felt we were well positioned to be a first mover in this domain.
What is the response in SME sector?
SME sector is still warming up to enterprise mobility, as the companies and individuals have realized the potential of these services for their both personal and entrepreneurial needs we have seen a lot of activity happening on the SME front. Having success in the SME sector requires being able to profitability serve a large number of relatively low volume customers, and we feel our technology platform has positioned us well to be able to do just that.
How can the technology of cloud communications can be leveraged for the benefit of individual mobile consumers and how are they responding currently to these services ?
There are 2 aspects of using Enterprise mobility for the individuals. First, they can use it for their personal consumption to send voice recorded messages, text smses or bulk emailers for events such as wedding invites, birthday invite, thank you messages etc. And the second is for entrepreneurial ventures or businesses where one can help service the SME sector as a channel partner. We have seen a lot of traction on both fronts.
How are the challenges/demand different in Tier 2 markets as compared to Tier 1 markets?
The Tier 1 markets are well educated about our services and they know what we are offering so it is easy to approach customers in such locations. However, competition in Tier 1 markets is getting stiffer. In Tier 2 markets, the awareness is much lower though accordingly the competition is also less. Also, servicing Tier 2 markets requires the ability to service huge numbers of customers on a personal basis, even though the usage may be relatively low. To help do that effectively, we have built or technology platform to be readily scalable to huge numbers of clients, and we also work with preferred Channel partners in each market to help educate the customer on the utility of cloud communications and also to provide the person service levels that customers in these markets require.
Your message to Channel Partners….
There is a great opportunity to provide cloud communications services in the market as the adoption will only increase. However, it is important to choose a reliable long term partner that can not only provide the highest service levels, but can also scale to meet your own growth aspirations. As an entrepreneurial endeavor, we have seen many of our channel partners build very attractive business based on servicing their local communities with cloud communications services.