Role Model

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

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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.

The be­gin­ning

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 jour­ney

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.

Ver­ti­cal fo­cus

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

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