Channels should marry customers’ business needs with technology: Ashis Guha

The key focus is augmenting more value to our channels, tech OEMs and customers while building a robust channel ecosystem says Ashis Guha, CEO, RAH Infotech.

Ashis Guha has been the CEO of RAH Infotech since April 01, 2018. An industry expert, Ashis has held senior roles with technology vendors including Sanovi, Perpetuuiti Technosoft, Brocade, Sun Microsystems, NetApp over the past two decades. Delhi headquartered value added distributor (VAD) company RAH Infotech distributes products and solutions for dozen plus enterprise technology global MNCs across channel ecosystem in India. Ashis Guha, CEO,RAH Infotech talks about his key priorities, business operations, channel partner initiatives in his new role at RAH Infotech.

Edited Excerpts. 

What will be your key priorities as CEO of RAH Infotech in 2018?

First and foremost, the focus will be on bringing in more value to our channel partners, technology partners and customers while building a robust channel ecosystem. Cementing the existing relationships, bettering the engagement model and streamlining the processes to give more bang for the buck would also be a top priority. It goes without saying, adding innovative product lines and bringing in new technologies to the market will be on the cards.

In the short-term we will focus on bettering the engagement with OEMs and channel partners and streamlining the processes to generate more revenue for all the stakeholders. We will also introduce Cloud and surveillance solutions, Analytics, Intelligent App solutions to our product line in the near future.

How do you intend to increase the relationship with existing technology OEMs to ensure more business opportunities for your channel partners?

At certain level in value added distribution, it is essential to connect and believe in each other and in the ecosystem. Having come from an OEM industry, I do understand the challenges OEMs face and the gaps they expect the VAD to fill.

Currently we enjoy a fantastic relationship with all our OEMs and we exchange great support from each other. Our management team is constantly in touch with them to understand short-term and long-term business goals and provide every support required to achieve the same.

Channels should focus on what they are best at and build your capabilities around areas like machine learning, Cloud, Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Surveillance and Security, IoT

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Ashis Guha, CEO, RAH Infotech

As a part of our GTM strategy, we will be working more closely with the OEM partners to understand the technology positioning and work as their extended arm on field to help channel partners take benefit of the newer technologies and help them understand the value proposition of OEMs while working closely on ground and stitching deals together.

Many IT VADs in India are exploring non- hardware business models to distribute new technologies like Cloud. How is RAH addressing these new opportunities in India?

Absolutely right. We are on the same boat and are talking to most of our OEMs and exploring what how we can ride this wave successfully. We are on hunt for more such solutions to address the ever changing marketplace and build the complete solution stack to help our partners to increase their play with the customers while building services around these cloud solutions to gain the competitive edge.

With each passing day, new technologies will be added, the way business is done will change and the advent of cloud technologies with change the role of the VAD altogether pushing them to be more innovative in order to sustain.

We have a mechanism of being in touch with our channel partners and on a day-to-day basis through social media channels, e-mailers, newsletters, sales and technical trainings, webinars, blog and videos though which we keep the channels updated on the latest technologies. We are even planning to develop our own app to keep our mobile partners engaged and informed.

Ashis’ leadership mantras for Digital CIOs

1

Keep pace with the technology trends and ensure that you are on top of it.

2

When you build an IT Infrastructure, build a robust security ecosystem as top priority.

3

The humongous data generated should be utilized for competitive edge to business.

4

Strike a fine balance between AI and ML as they are now a reality.

Channel partners have the challenge of moving from hardware to software (or services / cloud) model. Do you still see potential in hardware appliances?

While appliance based solutions continue to co-exist, it is important to prepare for the new era of distribution and we at RAH Infotech are already busy making necessary tweaks to the system to accommodate these changes in future.

With the vast amount of data moving in and out of datacenters, EDGE computing will come into the fore and storage will an imperative necessity. Hence there is still potential for hardware appliances in both enterprises and datacenters.

In India, data cannot go out of the country. Hence there has to be a mix and match of both hardware and software. It’s all about what kind of apps or technologies CIOs want. In short, they will continue to coexist.

Your top management and leadership mantras for CIOs to stay successful in the digital era.

Change is constant. Keep in pace with the technology trends and ensure that you are on top of it. When you build an IT Infrastructure, make sure you don’t compromise on security and build a robust security ecosystem. Security should be your top priority. In other words, marry the business needs with the technology.

With the humongous amount of data generated, there is a huge opportunity for the CIO to how best to utilize the data to give the competitive edge to any business. AI, Machine learning being a reality, you need to get the best from both, your team and the tools that would replace them. It is critical to strike a fine balance.

My tech bets for 2018 & 2019 : Ashis Guha

1

Cyber security

2

Artificial intelligence & Machine learning

3

Predictive analytics & Intelligent apps

4

IoT & Surveillance

5

Edge computing

How do you see IT VAD space change in 2018 and what business plans will keep you ahead of competition VADs in India?

With the advent of so many new technologies and data being at the center of everything, many VADs are looking at newer ways of addressing the markets and challenges. RAH Infotech’s focus will be on strengthening the existing relationships, look for new ones and scout for newer technologies to offer right kind of solutions to the customers and improve revenues.

We are constantly scouting around for new innovations happening to bring them to Indian market from early stage companies to established players where we can add value, expand their base and establish their business here.

What’s your key message to your channel ecosystem on their GTM, focus areas?

There’s too much happening in the market. Focus on what you are best at and build your capabilities around it. I see areas like machine learning, Cloud, Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Surveillance and Security and IoT taking the center stage. At the same time with so much data being generated and more and more devices being connected, security aspects are going to be huge. It is important to keep adding right solutions to add value to customers’ business.

Also, collaborating with OEMs and VADs in the areas of their strengths and leveraging on the same while focusing on a few key technologies and building a solutions around it with Pre and post-sales support should be the way forward.