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Destination India: Zoho zooms in on India market

ManageEngine, the firm’s enterprise IT management division, is embarking on an aggressive expansion strategy in the country

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The company will be expanding sales teams across NCR, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Kolkata.

The pandemic has accelerated the rise of new-age digital consumer and tech-savvy entities, positioning India among the fastest growing digital economies. For ManageEngine, the enterprise IT management division of Zoho, India has emerged as one of the top three markets worldwide, after the US and the UK. No wonder, the Chennai-based business software maker is embarking on an aggressive expansion strategy that includes significantly ramping up its local workforce, opening new mini/micro data centres and focussing on IT security and integration of AI in its product offerings.

ManageEngine plans to expand its team by 25%, hiring up to 1,000 employees this year. A majority of these will be for customer-facing roles, followed by development. The company will be expanding sales teams across NCR, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Kolkata. On the products front, there will be a strong focus on AI – security, service management & infra monitoring. At present, the company owns, operates and manages 12 data centres around the world. In India, it has two main data centres in Mumbai and Chennai, and two network points of presence (PoP) to cater to local customers, with plans afoot to set up 10 more PoPs soon.

“We are in IT for the long haul, so customers can trust us to be around,” Sridhar Vembu, CEO and co-founder of Zoho, told FE as ManageEngine marked two decades of operations last week. “The India market is growing rapidly for the company, and there is great potential for future growth. Earlier, there was a lot of dependence on North America, Europe and Japan. But growth, going forward, is going to come from India.”

Maintaining quality in products and services for over 20 years can be challenging. But ManageEngine’s biggest strength has always been its people, according to the Zoho co-founder. Established and emerging enterprises – including 9 of every 10 Fortune 100 organisations – rely on ManageEngine’s real-time IT management tools to ensure optimal performance of their IT infrastructure, including networks, servers, applications, desktops and more. It has offices worldwide, as well as more than 200 global partners to help organisations tightly align their business and IT segments.

Vembu said there are three key pillars driving growth for ManageEngine in India – hybrid work, cloud adoption and the government’s digital push. “We have been quite successful in catering to the needs of the modern workforce environment. We invest heavily in R&D, product design and integration, so that our customers can accelerate their own digital transformation. We also invest heavily in support so that our customers have a reliable partner to navigate a fast-changing landscape.”

Not just the move to digital, India tops digital maturity too, said Rajesh Ganesan, president, ManageEngine. “There is a strong push from the government and enforcement of regulations. Plus, affordable access to technology for businesses of all sizes is driving digital transformation,” he said.

“In India, we registered y-o-y revenue growth of 63.2% in 2021, while our customer count increased by 26.3%, driven primarily by demand from the BFSI and IT services and solutions sectors,” said Shailesh Davey, co-founder & vice-president of engineering at Zoho. There has been a 213% rise in revenue over the last five years, with customer count doubling over the period.

“While we have completed 20 years, we still have a long way to go and expect 10-20x growth in the next 10 years,” Vembu summarised on an optimistic note.

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