Tender response processes start-up to hire 500 people: CEO

“Our SaaS automation solutions are a blend of AI, analytics, and knowledge management. With functionalities at their core, our solutions enable robust decision-making for both buyers and sellers, while giving them scalability and reliability. We have grown consistently since our inception, sometimes even doubling our revenue in a calendar year,” said Ganesh Shankar, CEO, RFPIO.
Ganesh Shankar, CEO, RFPIO
Ganesh Shankar, CEO, RFPIO

CHENNAI: Within three years of starting a venture to simplify the tender response processes, the US-based RFPIO with roots in Coimbatore, raised $25 million from K1 Capital. It even acquired RFP360, thereby expanding its capabilities of both issuing and responding sides of business, building a platform that caters to diverse needs.

“Our SaaS automation solutions are a blend of AI, analytics, and knowledge management. With functionalities at their core, our solutions enable robust decision-making for both buyers and sellers, while giving them scalability and reliability. We have grown consistently since our inception, sometimes even doubling our revenue in a calendar year,” said Ganesh Shankar, CEO, RFPIO.

Noting that most of the customers were global enterprises, he said “Our products have reached users in over 50 nations, and our user base is continuing to expand at a brisk rate. Our platform is used by over 1,800 companies across industries, and we support over 2.5 lakh users. RFPIO’s proven track record includes 15-plus Fortune 100 companies, besides associations with global giants like Google Cloud, Facebook, LinkedIn and Microsoft. We have grown rapidly, acquiring over 1,800-plus new customers in five years. In July 2018, we received a $25 mn inward investment from K1 Capital, an industry-leading investor,” he said.

On the need for tender process automation, Ganesh said “Research suggests 80 per cent of sales efforts amount to only 20 per cent of revenue. Our co-founders began with the intention of providing a simple, trustworthy solution that will provide companies with a defining, competitive edge in the market. Today, not only do we support a variety of response types for them, but we also create and manage sales proposals, and resolve inefficiencies that are rooted in decentralised, inaccessible content and knowledge.”

A significant percentage of the world’s tender processing personnel are based in India, said the entrepreneur. “But the domain has faced various problems like redundancies and lack of technological adoption. By embracing automation, both responders and issuers can eliminate redundancies and focus on core business objectives. Our usecase studies have shown that clients’ sales teams have witnessed a 35 per cent increase in time optimisation. Our solutions help enterprises embrace efficient collaboration, and modern automation, thus unlocking the true revenue potential of the correct Response Management practices. RFPIO also comes equipped with a crucial, analytics-driven feature: Blind Scoring,” he said.

In fact, by letting companies remain anonymous during the entire tender process, Blind Scoring not only levels the playing field for small and big players alike, but also addresses the issues of data protection, privacy, and transparency, all of which have been perennial impediments in India’s Tender Processing landscape, Ganesh said, adding “also, to provide a platform for MSMEs to participate in major global tenders and scale up, we are aligning our services to suit them and offering them free automation solutions.”

On hiring plans to scale up operations in India, his response was “as one of India’s fastest-growing start-ups, our workforce almost tripled during the pandemic. Recognising India’s untapped potential as a tender response market, we have plans in place to increase our team to 500-plus employees in the coming years.”

Research suggests 80 pc of sales efforts amount to only 20 pc of revenue. Today, we create and manage sales proposals:Within three years of starting a venture to simplify the tender response processes, the US-based RFPIO with roots in Coimbatore, raised $25 million from K1 Capital. It even acquired RFP360, thereby expanding its capabilities of both issuing and responding sides of business, building a platform that caters to diverse needs.

“Our SaaS automation solutions are a blend of AI, analytics, and knowledge management. With functionalities at their core, our solutions enable robust decision-making for both buyers and sellers, while giving them scalability and reliability. We have grown consistently since our inception, sometimes even doubling our revenue in a calendar year,” said Ganesh Shankar, CEO, RFPIO.

Noting that most of the customers were global enterprises, he said “Our products have reached users in over 50 nations, and our user base is continuing to expand at a brisk rate. Our platform is used by over 1,800 companies across industries, and we support over 2.5 lakh users. RFPIO’s proven track record includes 15-plus Fortune 100 companies, besides associations with global giants like Google Cloud, Facebook, LinkedIn and Microsoft. We have grown rapidly, acquiring over 1,800-plus new customers in five years. In July 2018, we received a $25 mn inward investment from K1 Capital, an industry-leading investor,” he said.

On the need for tender process automation, Ganesh said “Research suggests 80 per cent of sales efforts amount to only 20 per cent of revenue. Our co-founders began with the intention of providing a simple, trustworthy solution that will provide companies with a defining, competitive edge in the market. Today, not only do we support a variety of response types for them, but we also create and manage sales proposals, and resolve inefficiencies that are rooted in decentralised, inaccessible content and knowledge.”

A significant percentage of the world’s tender processing personnel are based in India, said the entrepreneur. “But the domain has faced various problems like redundancies and lack of technological adoption. By embracing automation, both responders and issuers can eliminate redundancies and focus on core business objectives. Our usecase studies have shown that clients’ sales teams have witnessed a 35 per cent increase in time optimisation. Our solutions help enterprises embrace efficient collaboration, and modern automation, thus unlocking the true revenue potential of the correct Response Management practices. RFPIO also comes equipped with a crucial, analytics-driven feature: Blind Scoring,” he said.

In fact, by letting companies remain anonymous during the entire tender process, Blind Scoring not only levels the playing field for small and big players alike, but also addresses the issues of data protection, privacy, and transparency, all of which have been perennial impediments in India’s Tender Processing landscape, Ganesh said, adding “also, to provide a platform for MSMEs to participate in major global tenders and scale up, we are aligning our services to suit them and offering them free automation solutions.”

On hiring plans to scale up operations in India, his response was “as one of India’s fastest-growing start-ups, our workforce almost tripled during the pandemic. Recognising India’s untapped potential as a tender response market, we have plans in place to increase our team to 500-plus employees in the coming years.”

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