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By VARINDIA    2018-01-16

Infor eyes on Tier 2 cities for growth 

In a chat with VARINDIA, Ashish Dass, Vice-President & Managing Director, South Asia, Infor upholds that AI is going to change the world and the company is focusing on it. He highlights that the major growth in India is coming from the Tier 2 cities and it has a strategy around it. Dass also mentions that digital transformation is very important for the company and it sees India as a huge opportunity   


Kindly brief about Infor.

Infor is world’s third largest enterprises application software company and we are leaders in cloud applications. Our major differentiation in the market is we develop software which is industry specific with last mile functionality, connects to the last destination of customers and which also is science driven. So if you put all aspects together we are a clear differentiator when we bring our application to the market place and in today’s age if anyone wants to do business with somebody he has to understand customer needs very specifically. Everything is getting consolidated, every aspect of the business is getting more and more complex and customers are demanding simpler services. So if that is what the world is heading to, it is important for the companies like us to focus on the complexities and deliver them simply. And it is the only way we can do that when we have a specific industry focused application and adaptability of these applications.  

What are the solutions you offer? 
We started with providing solutions for manufacturing segment and then we moved on to supply-chain management which is warehouse management. Then we acquired a company called GT Nexus which is into the network side making sure that all constituents of the economy talk to each other seamlessly and then we got into the business intelligent and recently we have announced our AI initiative (Artificial Intelligent) called Coleman and that is the major milestone in Infor in 2017 after we announced our cloud strategy of CloudSuite in 2014. So AI is going to change the world. We say that AI now is the new user interface (UI). So these are the areas that we are specializing in and we want to make sure that all these things that we bring to the table makes the customer’s life easier. The customer’s job is to run business, our job is to make sure that the IT part of that business run effectively.

What are the focused verticals in India for Infor?
So from India standpoint, manufacturing has become an evident growth market. Everybody is talking about how to make in India, the government is incentivizing organizations for that, whether it is aerospace in defence, helping the companies to move from very small business to medium size business to an enterprise level business, techs start-ups. As per McKinsey report of last year, 71% of India’s GDP is contributed by 49 Tier 2 cities like Ludhiana, Tirupur, Chandigarh and if you look at what the government is saying and the data coming in it is making a lot of sense. These are the cities that are boosting the growth of India. So that’s where our strategy is because fortunately we are at the right place at the right time, even though we have been in India for last 20 years. With the new acquisitions and the strategy we have which is very industry specific, these industries are overlapping from where our strategies is. We have clear focus now in going into specific verticals in specific industries which are in Tier 2 cities and I am confident that there will be the next major growth face within India. From last one financial year we have done a triple growth year on year and also on quarter on quarter as compared to last quarter of last financial year. We have just put the right focus in place and it is helping us to ramp up our business.

How innovation is helping Infor to grow?
For us innovation is very important. We are constantly investing into acquiring businesses which augment our technology initiatives. If you look at Infor’s mantra, it is all about industry specific and science driven software for years now. AI is a complementary part now. Business is getting complex and they are consolidating and the customers are demanding a surplus and easier service.  AI is going to help us in that. That is the announcement which we did in a customer forum in 2017 and it is named as Coleman. It is going to take us to the next level.

What is the Digital Transformation strategy for Infor?
Digital transformation strategy for Infor is critical and it’s been there for a pretty long time. And if you look at the digital revolution in India people are talking about, we want digital transformation from two aspects – one, improving efficiency within our process. Second, taking a brand to the next level and the only way to do is digitization. So our strategy is in line with that. We have got our own digital initiative which is called Hook&Loop. So we are doing larger products with companies and we are doing that in India also where larger organizations are talking to us for the digital initiatives and saying that if we can use that digital transformation from an end user perspective and not just from IT perspective, that will create a lot of difference.

How do you see India market as an opportunity?
I am excited with India and it is a place where the action is, so there are two three simple parameters. India as a country is growing and the government is spending right amount of money in transforming India from where it was five-six years back to where it is today. Manufacturing sector is also growing and that is our key area of growth. India’s contribution to the region is very substantial and it is a main focus area for this sub-continent by Infor.