Local to Global
As I rose to speak in a Bangkok conference room in front of the 60 Netcorians gathered from all over the world for our international sales conference, I was overwhelmed. My memory went back to the early days of Netcore more than 25 years ago – all of us working out of a small office in Mumbai’s Fort area. And here we were, people from 15 countries all gathered to celebrate a wonderful year gone by and look ahead to the future. Netcore has come a long way in the five years since we began our international expansion in earnest. After multiple failed attempts, we finally got our playbook right and tasted success. Each year we added a few new countries to the mix. Now, as I prepared to speak, seeing the entire international team (except North America which we treat as a separate geo), I realised that what we were really building was a B2B SaaS multinational – with roots in India and customers everywhere in the world. It was a proud moment for me. I was happy to be in the presence of my colleagues who lived by the motto of “think global, act local.”
For the past day, I had heard many of them speak about their regions and how they had done. Southeast Asia and Nigeria were where we had begun, and then had expanded to the Middle East, and most recently to Europe, Latin America, and Australia. It was exhilarating to listen to how they improvised in their markets to fight off competitors and win the trust of customers. Many spoke about the culture of Netcore which gave them the freedom to be “entrepreneurs with a safety net.” While we do send people from India to the international markets, most of the team are local hires with a very good understanding of the language and nuances of doing business in their country. For decades, we have read about how the likes of Unilever, P&G, Coke, Pepsi, Nestle, and other MNCs have expanded from their home markets to conquer global markets. India’s IT services company showed the way in the past three decades in winning business globally. But there have not been many Indian product companies who have made a mark globally. SaaS (cloud software) offers Indian companies one such opportunity. In Netcore, we have been doing just that – having found success in India but also limited by its size, we have been working to expand globally.
In that room, seeing the enthusiasm, excitement, and energy in the global Netcorians, for the first time, I felt that we could truly build an Indian MNC. We have the product factory in India, and now we had the talent machine in Netcorians winning deals outside India and building their own mini “proficorns”. I savoured the moment, and then began my talk.