Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Google searches for SMBs ignored by Indian IT companies like Infosys, Wipro

Google is eating into the market of Indian IT services providers by aggressively selling its products and technology solutions to small and medium businesses, which are estimated to spend $15 billion (Rs 80,000 crore) on technology by 2015. 

From word processing and email to storage and enterprise search, Google is using every tool in its armoury to get the business of SMBs, some 1,000 of whom are already on its client roster. Operating in India since 2008, Google counts VoltasBSE 0.12 %, Yebhi, Nilkamal, Hiranandani and India InfolineBSE 3.16 %among some of its wins in the space. 
Working with hundreds of local reseller partners, Google is venturing into a multi-billion dollar market neglected by home-grown technology services companies such as InfosysBSE 1.45 %, WiproBSE -3.79 % and Tata Consultancy ServicesBSE -3.02 % who prefer big contracts from large enterprises. 

"Wearing so many hats and often without an IT team, SMB owners don't want the headache of setting up a complex solution they'll have to keep up," said Jeanne DeWitt, head of Google Apps SMB Sales, Japan & APAC. "They just want something that works so they can concentrate on running their business." 

DeWitt declined to share Google's SMB sales in India. 

India is estimated to have around a million SMBs, segmented into micro (1-10 employees), small (10-100 employees) and medium-sized (100-1000 employees). 

"Google's sales and alliances team is aggressively chasing the market, adding customers and building partners," Jaideep Mehta, vice president and country manager at technology market researcher IDC India. "What really differentiates Google from a larger company is their approach. While larger IT services firms behave like B2B players, Google is removing thin line differentiating the B2B and B2C and targeting every possible customer." 

As the SMB market is typically fragmented, it calls for larger sales force or a fine-tuned channel strategy, both of which have been deterring Indian IT away from this market. However, the emergence of cloud as a platform for delivering technology solutions has given companies like Google an edge in tackling this market. 

As part of an international campaign that Google is running, it launched 'India, Get Your Business Online,' which has already got 50,000 registered members till April 2012. Google expects at least 5 lakh to sign up for it by 2014, and is even offering free email addresses and Google $51 coupon (Rs 2500 approximately) for advertising on the Google network. 

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