RAKSUL has been one of Japan’s most successful startups. It started its journey in 2009 by offering a listing and facilitating a web service that allowed users to look up and compare the prices of various printing services. Later, the company ventured into the logistics space and then disrupted the market by democratizing TV commercials.
In October 2020, the company entered into another line of business in India by setting up an R&D Center of Excellence (CoE) in Bengaluru with a focus on data science, AI, mobile, cloud, and web technologies. The aim is to create enterprise solutions for the globe.
For one, RAKSUL is not sticking to the tried and tested ideas but trying to do things differently. In this interview, Yasukane Matsumoto, Founder and CEO of RAKSUL shares his views on how the company is looking to reimagine and transform large conventional industries by leveraging digital technologies. Excerpts:
Q. RAKSUL Has been a disruptive player in the industry. You disrupted a complex and traditional industry like printing, ventured into logistics by launching Hacobell B2B e-commerce platform in 2015 and followed that with the launch of technology Novasell – a digital marketplace for TV commercials in April 2020. And now you have ventured into the IT space.
Streamlining corporate IT by increasing efficiencies, reducing costs, and enhancing security is an ongoing challenge for IT leaders. How are you taking these challenges head-on by creating new solutions for business users?
Our intent is to help companies innovate, transform and become more efficient.
Enterprise users today use several SaaS apps on their official IT devices. All of these need to be managed and facilitated, and this poses a significant overhead in terms of management, monitoring, and security.
We created JOSYS to redefine corporate IT with an integrated cloud solution that abstracts, simplifies, and automates IT operations for employee lifecycle management. You can label it as a one-stop solution for businesses to achieve increased productivity, cost optimization, and enhanced security.
Q. JOSYS was built from the ground up by RAKSUL’s India Center of Excellence. What led you to choose India and create a Center of Excellence (CoE) in Bengaluru? Also, what kind of industries/sectors and geographies are you looking to target?
Our choice to enter India was certainly not outsourcing. The main purpose for setting up our operations here was to recruit world-class talent. We want to acquire and build strong leadership in technology, product, and business development in India. Our vision is to create solutions in the country and take them to the rest of the world.
We will be targeting traditional industries and businesses that don’t have a lot of technology-infused in them. That’s our target zone. We will bring in new solutions and technology to help these industries transform digitally and become agile.
JOSYS has been created as a global platform. The launchpad for JOSYS will be Japan. However, once we hit certain business success metrics in Japan, we roll it out globally. That’s the plan we have.
Q. How different is the market in Japan vis-à-vis India. Also, being a new entrant in India, how are you trying to make space for your offerings?
The number of startups in Japan is limited as compared to India. However, the market is huge. The other factor is a slow-paced adoption from users in terms of new-age technologies. This is especially the case in some of the traditional industries
From RAKSUL India’s standpoint, the biggest challenge for us is to understand the Indian market. We need to understand customers, their sentiments, preferences, and their limitations. The whole market dynamics here are very different from the other SaaS markets that we are normally used to.
We need to understand what customers value, what they are willing to adopt, why certain things will not work here, and so on. This knowledge is not easy to gain and it will take time.
Q. How would you rate your journey so far and what are some of the things that you are cautious about moving ahead?
We have merely scratched the surface. The start has been really good. We have been able to create a symphony using the business acumen of our Japanese team and the tech expertise of the Indian team. However, we are cautiously optimistic as we go ahead as the complexity is only going to increase with more teams, and with a greater amount of work happening via increased delivery streams.