A person who founded a company that can empower the youth of India. A person who is working on transforming the remotest villages of India into tech hubs. This story is about Sridhar Vembu, founder and CEO of ZOHO corporation who believes that the offices in villages are the future of the world.
From an ordinary employee to one of the biggest social entrepreneurs in India, the whole life of Sridhar Vembu is an inspiration. He built a company that is profitable since day one and that too without any external funding. He stuck to the concept of bootstrapping and recently ZOHO reached a $1 Billion valuation making it a unicorn.
Sridhar Vembu was born in 1968 in Tanjore, Tamil Nadu, India. He is the co-founder and CEO of Zoho Corporation, the company which recently crossed revenue of 1 billion dollars.
He has been awarded India’s fourth-highest civilian award the Padma Shri in 2021. Sridhar comes from a middle-class family. His journey is really remarkable in terms of achieving great heights while strongly holding his roots. He is a true nationalist and a perfect example of how a person can give back to society.
Vembu was a very bright student and he did his primary education in the Tamil language. Later he completed his bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering from IIT Madras in the year 1989. After that, he earned his Ph.D. from Princeton University.
Before founding Zoho, Sridhar Vembu worked at Qualcomm in California. He along with his brothers and a friend started Zoho.
Zoho is basically a software company that focuses on providing SaaS (Software-as-a-service) support to customer relationship management services. It is best known for its online office suite offering Zoho Office Suite and other web-based business tools.
Vembu started Zoho Schools and Zoho University to train the young minds of the nation for the upcoming challenges and the current situation of the growing world. The students will learn irrespective of their educational background and degree. Instead, they will get a stipend while learning.
The main reason behind this initiative was to reach the students residing in the villages who consider themselves away from new skills and technologies. This initiative can bring revolution to the country by providing a helping hand in solving the unemployment crisis in India.
He believes in the policy to hire and train talent from underprivileged backgrounds. According to Sridhar, there are many engineers who are keen to learn the latest skills and the need of the hour is a better opportunity within the nation.
From an ordinary employee to one of the biggest social entrepreneurs in India, the whole life of Sridhar Vembu is an inspiration. He built a company that is profitable since day one and that too without any external funding.
He is committed to rural skill creation and is a man of simplicity with great clarity of thought. All in all a deadly combination. His vision of making enterprise technologies affordable for the world is a profound example of his idea to build a durable company.
According to Sridhar, the new startups should focus on building high-quality products. They should invest in R&D and should make reliable and efficient products. Products are the backbone of a company and an entrepreneur’s first focus should be on his product.
Sridhar Vembu is a very grounded person and even after becoming a billionaire businessman, he lives in a small village in Tamil Nadu named Mathalamparai. He believes in simple living.
According to him, a person will see setbacks and suffering but the pain is real and the suffering is optional. A person can always stand again and as he says shamelessness is the biggest quality of an entrepreneur. He is truly an inspiration for us all and especially the young entrepreneurs.
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