Thinking Street Interviews Fractal Analytics CEO Srikanth Velamakanni

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Fractal Analytics CEO, Srikanth Velamakanni interviewed by ThinkingStreet on the company's experience in ca catering to a diverse set of Fortune 100 clients and the future of analytics outsourcing to India

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Thinking Street Interviews Fractal Analytics CEO Srikanth Velamakanni

  1. 1. ThinkingStreet - Business Strategy for the Flat World » Interview With S... http://www.thinkingstreet.com/business/2007/12/08/interview-with-srikan... ThinkingStreet.com Business Strategy for the Flat World Home | News | Insight | Industry Leaders | Companies | Job Board | Subscribe Interview With Srikanth Velamakanni: CEO Fractal Analytics 08 Dec 2007 | Print | Digg IT! | del.icio.us | Permanent Link Fractal is a leading provider of advanced analytics services with more than 40 clients in 15 countries. The company helps retail financial; banking and telecommunication institutions take data based decisions that enhance the effectiveness of their marketing and risk management programs. Every year Fractal builds over 200 customer behavior models that get implemented at businesses across the world. Fractal works with 5 out of the 10 largest banks in Asia and with 3 of the largest Credit card issuers in India and has a global presence with offices in New York, Singapore and Mumbai and a client presence in USA, Japan, Singapore, India, South Korea, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. Srikanth Velamakanni, an MBA from Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Ahmedabad and a BS in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi is the young CEO and Co Founder of Fractal Analytics. He has led several assignments for Fractal Analytics assisting leading banks in carrying out their Retention Programs and Cross Sell Programs. Thinkingstreet got an opportunity to talk to Srikanth on Fractal Analytics is specific and his view on analytics industry is general. Here is the excerpt of our discussions. ThinkingStreet: Business Analytics is increasingly becoming integral to marketing strategy especially for industries like banking, finance, retail, telecom etc. What is the future of business analytics and what are the upcoming sectors that are taking to analytics? Srikanth: Management is moving from Art to Science. Organizations today are relying on data-led decisioning to scale-up and build competitive advantage. Use of analytics is seen as one of the key differentiators to compete in the fierce marketplace today and get the maximum return out of every marketing rupee spent. Financial Services firms have been the first one off the block. It has been partly because of “risk management” being a critical function and analytics is the answer to that. But, they are also now using Analytics to identify their best customers, most profitable customers, most responsive customers, so on and so forth. Now, Telecom companies are now getting into use of Analytics. Retail sector is still in the process of growing square footage in India and managing that process. Though there are few retailers with foresight to include the use of analytics as part of their business model itself. ThinkingStreet: The major prerequisite for superior analysis is quality data. Considering a market like India where most of the transactions are cash in nature and adoption of concepts like credit cards, loyalty cards etc. is still in infancy; do you think we are covering just a small part of the story. How can analytics help in predicting the consumer behavior that is still out of the data loop? Srikanth: Data build-up within a business goes through phases. There are three key drivers helping analytics today - businesses are now becoming more aware about the analytical power. Customer transactions are moving in data-friendly manner (e.g. transactions are moving to credit cards) and advancement in data warehousing technologies One common myth within businesses is that “We cannot do analytics, as we do not have data”. Our experience is that businesses typically have huge data, but they are not in clean shape. Example - customer data or transaction data. Firms like ours are experts in managing dirty data. We convert seemingly unusable data to structured, analyzable shape by using advanced analytics. ThinkingStreet: On the outsourcing front; analytics is a high end service for the global customer. What is Fractal’s experience with their international clients; especially in terms of acceptability of services provided from India? Srikanth: Analytics is a mature industry especially in US. Clients are far more clear about what they are looking for. This makes it far more amenable to outsourcing. We have many Fortune 100 clients that are outsourcing analytics in a big way. Another key driver for outsourcing analytics to India is the presence of mathematical talent in our country. Indians are far more quantitative friendly and is an ideal location to base Analytical engines for top organizations globally. About Fractal 1 of 7 1/4/2008 1:25 PM
  2. 2. ThinkingStreet - Business Strategy for the Flat World » Interview With S... http://www.thinkingstreet.com/business/2007/12/08/interview-with-srikan... Fractal works with more than 40 clients in 15 countries Every year Fractal builds over 200 customer behavior models that get implemented at businesses across the world Fractal works with 5 out of the 10 largest banks in Asia Fractal works with 3 of the largest Credit card issuers in India Fractal has grown at over 100% per annum for the last 2 years Fractal has consistently provided at least 20% reduction in delivery timelines through the usage of our data models, tools and processes Pioneered the development of Debit Scorecards, which is a scoring product for customers without adequate credit history Fractal has a global presence with offices in New York, Singapore and Mumbai Fractal has client presence in USA, Japan, Singapore, India, South Korea, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, UAE ThinkingStreet: To provide valuable insights to the client any team will need deep domain experience. In catering to international clients, do you see this requirement as a constraint for Fractal; especially for the industry where developed markets work in a very different way than India, when it comes to Analytics? Srikanth: Domain expertise is critical for solving the kind of problems that we face. Fractal has been working in this area for more than 7 years now. We have a robust mechanism of synthesizing all our learning from hundreds of projects that we have executed in Financial Services, Retail, Telecom & CPG domains. We have our proprietary “Country specific data models” that help us in pulling together all our learning for solving that business problem in that country. Organizations are becoming global today. The fact that we are working for banks in Asia, US & India actually helps us in transferring learning from one region to another. ThinkingStreet: From the global sourcing perspective, in analytics, what kind of work can be easily off-shored and which ones are the most challenging? Srikanth: Analytics straddle across Data Management, MIS reporting, predictive models development, through Business Consulting. Generally, except for pure Business Consulting, we have been successfully executing analytical projects across the spectrum for our clients. ThinkingStreet: How are the billing rates and margins in your industry, say in comparison to other outsourcing industry like IT services or equity research? Srikanth: Analytics is considered a specialized service and is not commoditized as much say IT services. Specialized analytics consulting can command very good rates. ThinkingStreet: What are the challenges your industry is facing; especially in global sourcing context? Srikanth: Some of the challenges we face are the outsourcing mindset within US businesses and the talent shortage in the country. ThinkingStreet: With Cognizant paying 135mn USD for MarketRx which is in a similar space as yours, how does the industry’s future look to you? Srikanth: Very bright! ThinkingStreet: What are Fractal Analytics business growth plans? Srikanth: We have very aggressive plans to consolidate our strong position. We have opened two new delivery centers in India - one in Delhi, one in Kolkata. Our business plans is to grow more than 100% for next 2 years. Leave a Reply Name (required) Mail (hidden) (required) Website 2 of 7 1/4/2008 1:25 PM
  3. 3. ThinkingStreet - Business Strategy for the Flat World » Interview With S... http://www.thinkingstreet.com/business/2007/12/08/interview-with-srikan... Enter the code shown in the image: Submit Comment Trackback URI | Comments RSS Go Insight Interview With Srikanth Velamakanni: CEO Fractal Analytics Fractal is a leading provider of advanced analytics services with more than 40 clients in 15 countries. The company helps retail financial; banking and telecommunication institutions take data based decisions that enhance the effectiveness of their marketing and risk management programs. The Knowledge Challenge. Peter-Anthony Glick For Indian outsourcing providers, their business is evolving towards securing partnerships for innovation with their customers. It is therefore no longer only about cost-savings and taking on non-core activities. Now here is a challenge for them TECH TALK : CITY WI-FI NETWORKS : UNWIRING INDIA One of the challenges facing India for last mile connectivity to homes and offices is the stranglehold that the government owned telcos (BSNL and MTNL) have. While both are now pushing DSL to the home, the pace of deployment is not as rapid as India needs. In this context, what is interesting are the plans by many cities in the US to deploy wireless networks to provide a blanket of connectivity. This has two implications for India: first, we should be looking at similar technologies and plans; What Next In Offshoring? Offshoring For Growth & Innovation What next in offshoring? Different folks will give different responses - Analytics, KPO, CRO, Moving up value chain, Product Development, Engineering Services, Consulting, Higher domain knowledge, Channel Development etc . This is like few blind men trying to describe an elephant. All are probably right in their own way but all are missing the big picture. This big picture in my opinion is offshoring for growth and innovation… Outsourcing Models For Software Development Scott Why Consider Outsourcing? All software companies and corporate IT departments are faced with the challenge of increased demands to produce quality software faster. At the same time, they are pressured to reduce costs, either to become more competitive, or because of budget reductions. In short, everyone wants to do more with less. And most of these organizations consider outsourcing as a means to increase their capacity while reducing overall costs. 3 of 7 1/4/2008 1:25 PM
  4. 4. ThinkingStreet - Business Strategy for the Flat World » Interview With S... http://www.thinkingstreet.com/business/2007/12/08/interview-with-srikan... Cost Competency: No Longer A Competitive Advantage For IT Industry The recent appreciation of rupees against the dollar has created a lot of panic in the Indian exporters of textiles and other manufactured goods, besides services. Software services have, particularly, seen their competitiveness suffer. The whole concepts of outsourcing in India are developed because of the cost benefits that foreign companies get in comparison to other countries in the world. India’s Digital Infrastructure The Internet is back! There’s a buzz among entrepreneurs as venture capital companies are putting money into companies focused on the Indian market. Online advertising (display, search and classifieds) is growing. Users are starting to spend on transactions going beyond ticketing. All in all, the long-promised boom of the Indian Internet is underway… Ideas For I.T. SME’s To Ride The Rupee Appreciation Wave Mahendra Penumathsa For those who have seen the raise of the rupee against the greenback a last couple of quarters, the question mark stays - “Will it continue to raise or will it reverse back to the Rs. 45 to 1 USD levels ?” Mainstream analysts concentrate on big ideas “Go ahead and build assets in U.S., make that acquisition now, etc.,”. Sure, all valid points for the big ones… Featured Article The Cultural Challenge. Peter-Anthony Glick After their successes with outsourcing services, Indian IT Services firms are growing their consulting business.In Europe, and in particular mainland western countries like Germany and France, one of their key challenges is to convince European executives that they have acquired internally enough “local” culture to provide adapted services. Industry Leaders Kishan Ananthram - IonIdea Kishan serves as Chief Executive Officer of IonIdea. As one of the founding members, Kishan has helped IonIdea move toward becoming an innovative information technology (IT) solutions company. Newswire » Convergys Opening New Call Center In New Mexico » Blog Analytics Outsourcing The New Buzzword » Planet Satyam To Help Staff Connect » IT Spend By Banks In N America Europe To Fall » Shell Plans To Outsource 3,200 IT Jobs » CSC Renews TrygVesta Deal » Wipro Q3 Results On Jan 18 » Infosys Technologies To Announce Third Quarter Results » Promotion For Juniors Is Strtegy To Check Attrition At BPOs » BPOs Servicing Retailers Suffered Due To Low Holiday Season Sales 4 of 7 1/4/2008 1:25 PM
  5. 5. ThinkingStreet - Business Strategy for the Flat World » Interview With S... http://www.thinkingstreet.com/business/2007/12/08/interview-with-srikan... » We Need Image Makeover For IT BPO Industries » Patni Computer Systems Lnks $200-Million Deal With And Carphone Warehouse Company This Week MeritTrac MeritTrac™ is India’s Largest Skills Assessment CompanyMeritTrac designs and delivers assessments to evaluate abilities, skills and knowledge for both corporate & individual customers. Editors Choice Marketing Myopia- ITES Sector Pareekh Jain How new technology developments can alter the ITES sector landscape?Are Indian Companies prepared? Marketing management, second lecture at IIM Bangalore, professor asked me, “What is Marketing Myopia?” I was clueless. I forgot to read the Kotler last night… Latest Jobs 5 of 7 1/4/2008 1:25 PM
  6. 6. ThinkingStreet - Business Strategy for the Flat World » Interview With S... http://www.thinkingstreet.com/business/2007/12/08/interview-with-srikan... » November 28, 2007 l Data Warehousing Manager - Wipro BPO » November 28, 2007 l Config/Release Manager - Wipro BPO » November 28, 2007 l Test Lead - Wipro BPO » November 28, 2007 l Project Manager - Integration - Wipro BPO » November 08, 2007 l Research Analyst - Global Telecom Research - A Leading Client Of Pylon Manage... » November 08, 2007 l Manager/Sr.Manager - Audit & Enterprise Risk Services - A Leading Client Of P... » November 2, 2007 l GM Operation - HR - A Leading IT Client Of Gilbert Tweed Associates Pvt.Ltd. » October 31, 2007 l Manager/Sr.Manager - Audit & Enterprise Risk Services - A Leading Client Of Py... » October 11, 2007 l Practice Specialist - Risk Management - A Leading client of Pylon Management » October 11, 2007 l Counterparty Credit Rating/Research Analyst - A Leading client of Pylon Manage... Home Job Board About ThinkingStreet Contact Subscribe Feedback Tools Font Size: Download:PDF Reader Add to Favorites Recent Comments » Priyanka - KPO professional on New Players Eye Architecture KPO Business » Nike on Fractal - A Leading Provider Of Advanced Analytics Services » Sanjay on Cap Gemini Shares Fall After Denying Wipro Talks » Unknown Indian on TCS, Wipro Bypass AICTE For Faster Intake » Pareekh Jain on The Knowledge Challenge. 6 of 7 1/4/2008 1:25 PM
  7. 7. ThinkingStreet - Business Strategy for the Flat World » Interview With S... http://www.thinkingstreet.com/business/2007/12/08/interview-with-srikan... » Arun on Is The Industry Mature Enough To Embrace Service Oriented Architectures » Amit Roy on What Next In Offshoring? Offshoring For Growth & Innovation Job Board The Job Board with a Difference. INR 600K+ opportunities: ThinkingStreet JobBoard focuses on premium jobs for its readers - a niche segment of middle and senior management comprising business analysts, technology professionals, consultants and the corporate decision makers. Read.. Entries RSS Comments RSS © 2008 ThinkingStreet.com all rights reserved | Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact us | Powered by Yahoo Hosting 7 of 7 1/4/2008 1:25 PM

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