Syndrome Technologies has emerged as a leading network integrator in the country in a short span of nine years. The company’s Founder and CEO, Siddharth Mehta shares his journey so far, and the future plans
The networking specialist
Syndrome Technologies’ Founder and CEO, Siddharth Mehta shares his journey so far, and the future plans
In the short span of nine years, Mumbai-based Syndrome Technologies has emerged as a leading network integrator in the country. Started in 2005, the company today has a turnover of ` 76 crore with nearly ` 42 crore of this coming from networking and unified communications. Siddharth Mehta, its Founder and Managing Director, attributes the success of the company to focus on advanced solutions, deepselling, and an emphasis on sales and support excellence.
After obtaining a Masters in Computer Science from Rochester Institute of Technology in 2003, Mehta joined his father’s manufacturing business. However, he found his calling in the IT field, and in 2005 started Syndrome Infotech as a reseller of PCs and servers sourced from local resellers.
Mehta realized that the reselling margins were low, and that he could earn more in solutions and services. With that in mind he started Syndrome Technologies as a provider of networking solutions from Nortel Networks.
While Syndrome bagged small deals for Nortel, its first large deal in 2005 was for Flat Products Equipment India (FPEI), for which it integrated data and voice solutions from Cisco with Panasonic PBX, and connected FPEI’s Taloja plant with its headquarters in Andheri, Mumbai, for ` 25 lakh.
Syndrome got a big boost in 2006 when it migrated a couple of large customers from the competition to Nortel Networks for deals averaging ` 1 crore to ` 3 crore. Recalls Mehta, “During 2006-2008, we migrated about 30-40 competitive accounts to Nortel accounts, including customers such as HCC, 3i Infotech and Saraswat Bank.”
He says that besides investments in training and certifications, fantastic post-sales support from Nortel helped Syndrome to build a persuasive story which enabled its customer migration strategy.
The year 2008 which was an acid test for large SIs,
“UC and VC have been big growth areas. Within the first two years of venturing into this domain, we executed 60 large projects involving 2,000-15,000 users”
turned out to be a high-growth year for Syndrome.
Explains Mehta, “Because of the slowdown CIOs were looking for reliable partners who could maintain their IT infrastructure in a costeffective manner; they were therefore examining options in the tier-2 space. Also, because of the freeze in budgets, enterprises were deploying video conferencing, collaboration and unified communications on IP.”
Syndrome devised a unique strategy and started deploying IP-ready networks (PoE switches) from Nortel and collaboration equipment from Tandberg. “Unified communications and video conferencing have been high growth areas for us. Seeing the scope in the segment, we roped in Amit Khanna from GTL to lead our collaboration unit. We also invested heavily in training and are one of the 15 ATPs post Tandberg’s acquisition by Cisco. Between 2008 and 2010, we executed at least 60 large multi-crore projects involving 2,000-15,000 users,” Mehta says.
The SI saw a very significant development in 2008. “Nortel applied for bankruptcy,” recalls Mehta. “But Cisco took the opportunity and signed us on as a Registered Partner. Over the years we developed expertise in all Cisco technologies, and are now eying the vendor’s Big Bet program.”
By 2010, Syndrome had multiplied its vendor relationships to include HP, F5, Blue Coat, Check Point, EMC, Force10, Polycom and Tyco Electronics, and set its footprint into collaboration.
Informs Mehta, “We signed up with the right vendors, developed strong skill-sets around certain business verticals, then got into the UCS story with Cisco.” By now, for deals starting at $300,000, Syndrome had also deployed complete networking, wireless and UCS solutions for customers of telecom service provider DoCoMo in the hospitality and construction verticals, as well as customers of Internet service provider Ibahn.
By 2011, Syndrome saw cross-selling and up-selling opportunities around networking and therefore decided to expand its solutions portfolio. It reorganized its business into six main verticals: data center build, networking, collaboration, virtualization, compute-storage and managed services. The vertical team leads the respective domain in tandem with the sales team that works across verticals to