WE ARE LIVING IN EXCITING AND UNCERTAIN TIMES, WHERE TRADITIONAL MODELS OF BUSINESSES ARE BEING CHALLENGED AND NEW MODELS ARE STILL EVOLVING. ORGANISATIONS ARE STRUGGLING TO REMAIN RELEVANT IN THIS MARKETPLACE. IN SUCH PRESSING TIMES, CLOUD COMPUTING COME
Shailender Kumar, Regional MD, Oracle India, discusses the financial performance of his organisation in 2018-2019
What is your view of the performance, so far, of the Indian ICT industry in 2019? In 2019, we are witnessing more transformative success stories than ever. Our homes and offices will undergo further changes with smartphones, smart speakers, digital assistants, chatbots etc. Artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), augmented reality, virtual reality, machine learning (ML), big data analytics, robotic process automation, will cease to be emerging or niche technologies. For example, blockchain was associated with financial transactions only, however now, it is being used successfully in agriculture, supply chain management for example to reduce fake drugs distribution like Oracle has piloted a project with NITI Aayog, Apollo Pharmacy and Strides Pharma to address India’s fake drugs problem. Not just that, these technologies are playing the role of an equalizer, they are helping large enterprises and startups alike in developing innovative products and improving efficiency and productivity at the same time.
These changes do present a huge opportunity for companies to innovate and build modern businesses, yet at the same time they set challenges in terms of the need for new skilled workers. Re-skilling and upskilling of the workforce has become a pressing obligation of the ICT industry. Not just the present professionals, our students and fresh graduates also need to have new skillsbecause by the time they enter the workforce it is very likely that the skills requirement would have advanced.
What is your view on FY 19 in terms of business and financial performance? Please share any two key highlights.
Our SaaS business has witnessed exceptional growth in the past few years with double digit growth. We are taking away market share from the incumbents. There continues to be high demand for our vast SaaS portfolio, be it ERP or HCM or CX solutions.
The next big highlight for us has been the introduction of Oracle Autonomous Database. It’s been called out as
Oracle’s most successful product in its 50 year history. Since we launched this product a year back, we’re seeing great market demand locally. In the last 6 months, we’ve spoken with around ~1500 key business decision makers, and ~40% of them have shown interest to try it soon. Of these, ~15% have already started active trials. Most new inquiries are for heavy-duty analytics workloads from the BFSI and Retail industries. Given our market leadership in databases, Oracle Autonomous Database will drive our next big growth leap in India along with our wide SaaS portfolio.
We also launched our new Gen2 Cloud Infrastructure that offers customers a compelling array of advanced technology features including our self-driving database (Autonomous Database0 that automatically encrypts all data, backs itself up, tunes itself, upgrades itself, and patches itself when a security threat is detected. It does all of this autonomously—while running—without the need for any human intervention, and without the need for any downtime. No other cloud infrastructure provides anything close to these autonomous features.
Our past year, we signed up many new customers. Some of them are: Federal Bank, South Indian Bank, Codeinks, CRIF HIGHMARK, Huron Consulting, Save
In the last 6 months, we’ve spoken with around ~1500 key business decision makers, and ~40% of them have shown interest to try it soon. Of these, ~15% have already started active trials. Most new inquiries are for heavy-duty analytics workloads from the BFSI and Retail industries
the Children, Apollo Tyres, Motherson Sumi, Sandhar Technologies, Cactus Communication, Oyo Rooms, Hindalco, IOCL, FabIndia, Karam Industries, Hyber, Servion, TribhuvanDas Bheemji Zaveri Jewelers, DHFL, Aurpbindo Pharmaceuticals, Oriental Insurance Company, Rallis India, HDFC Bank, Hindalco etc.
What is the way ahead in an environment of declining margins, softer IT spending and tighter outsourcing,
and GDPR regime, in the traditional vertical’s segments? We are living in exciting and uncertain times, where traditional models of businesses are being challenged and new models are still evolving. Organisations are struggling to remain relevant in this marketplace. In such pressing times, cloud computing comes across more like a new business model rather than a technology. It is critical for companies to address their key business priorities that usually encompass increase revenue, boost cash flow, decrease spending, and manage risk.
At the root of this business model shift is the ability to free up money and people to innovate—help create new and different digitally driven products, services, and customer experiences within flat IT budgets. This ability becomes particularly important in the current slowgrowth economic environment, in which most companies must grab market to increase revenues.At its core, the cloud simply drives down capital expenditures, reduces labor, creates certainty of outcomes, and reduces the cost of overall maintenance and hence in the end it costs less. The cloud business model accelerates the speed to innovation—and bottom-line results for companies and we are seeing that change happening today.
What is your business outlook for FY 20, and what are the key focus areas?
Oracle has set new standards with the world’s first Autonomous Database. Oracle is revolutionizing how data is managed with the introduction of the world’s first “self-driving” database ( Autonomous Database). This ground-breaking technology automates management to deliver unprecedented availability, performance, and security—at a significantly lower cost.
Built with advanced artificial intelligence (AI) and groundbreaking machine-learning (ML) algorithms,
Oracle Cloud Platform autonomous services offer selfdriving, self-securing, and self-repairing capabilities, enabling organizations to lower cost, reduce risk, accelerate innovation, and get predictive insights. Self-driving services use AI and machine learning to help organizations lower cost, reduce risk, accelerate innovation, and get predictive insights.
Oracle is optimistic about its SaaS growth and is well on its way to becoming the largest business applications cloud company in the world. India has been at the helm of this progress adding double digit growth to revenues last three years in a row, making India the best performing region within JAPAC.
With emerging technologies bringing in a paradigm shift in real time business outcomes, ML is soon to become the new battlefield in SaaS. Additionally, with some of the largest, oldest and most iconic brands as well as business conglomerates embracing digital transformation, it is not surprising that they are choosing Oracle over competition, given Oracle’s unique proposition of an end-to-end complete stack and an unmatched portfolio of enterprise applications on the Cloud.
What is the influence of the emerging technologies? How will it impact the next couple of years?
Artificial Intelligence makes the world’s broadest, most
Oracle is optimistic about its SaaS growth and is well on its way to becoming the largest business applications cloud company in the world. India has been at the helm of this progress adding double digit growth to revenues last three years in a row
innovative, and fastest-growing Cloud Applications portfolio even smarter. Oracle embeds AI across many of its business and technology services. Relying on years of domain expertise, and with a deep understanding of cross-industry and specific industry market trends, Oracle’s data scientists build models that solve key business problems and eliminate the need for customers to build, train, and fine-tune a team to embed AI on their own.
Last year, Oracle announced new artificial intelligencebased apps for finance, human resources, supply chain, manufacturing, commerce, customer service, marketing, and sales professionals. The new Oracle Adaptive Intelligent Apps are built into the existing Oracle Cloud Applications to deliver the industry’s most powerful AIbased modern business applications. Adding machine learning and cognitive interactions to traditional business processes and applications enables greatly improved user experience and productivity. In addition to Oracle AI Platform Cloud Service, which includes high-performance training and operational infrastructure, Oracle embeds ready-to-use AI and machine-learning capabilities across Oracle’s SaaS, PaaS, and IOT services, including cognitive AI, analytics, data services, IT management, and security operations.
Oracle announced general availability of Oracle Blockchain Cloud services across countries too. The service allows organizations to easily build blockchain networks to drive more secure and efficient transactions and to track goods through supply chains on a global scale. Arab Jordan Investment Bank, CargoSmart, Certified Origins, Indian Oil, Intelipost, MTO, Neurosoft, Nigeria Customs, Sofbang, Solar Site Design and TradeFin are among the many global organizations that have already adopted Oracle’s blockchain platform.
We announced our partnership in September 2018 with NITI Aayog, the policy Think tank of the government of India, in alliance with Apollo Hospitals and Strides Pharma Sciences, to reduce fake/counterfeit drug distribution in the country. By piloting a real drug supply chain using blockchain and IoT software, they can support governments and healthcare experts to quickly detect fake drugs and aide authorities to enforce penalties on wrong-doers with easy, proof-based data.