Ashok Hariharan, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, IDfy has eleven years’ experience in the technology industry. He successfully started Gaboli, where he still holds a board position. IDfy is India’s leading ‘integrated people 'decisioning' platform’ providing end-to end HR solutions by leveraging predictive analytics, cloud-based technology and automation within the shortest turnaround time assisting companies to take informed business decisions. Started in 2011, as a background verification company, IDfy has now emerged as a platform managing the whole HR cycle right from talent acquisition to career growth analytics of an individual. Prior to Gaboli, Ashok worked at British Telecom in the strategy team, looking at operations, financial, as well as product development strategies. He has also consulted with many start-ups and large companies on operations and marketing strategies. He has an M.B.A. from ISB Hyderabad and B.E. from University of Pennsylvania. In his free time, Ashok likes to travel and scuba dive. His new-found passion is photography and he hopes to become better at it. In conversation with Dominic Rebello, he explains the greenfield areas of his business which have not been tapped globally and how he plans to get there...
What drives you?
Simply, seeing IDfy evolve everyday. Imagine this: just a year ago we were only 12 people while right now IDfy is about 150 people strong. To see a company through this kind of growth is definitely a huge rush. To have your customers swear by your products, and the rest of the company feel that this is the best company that they have ever worked for is a high that you just can’t replicate.
How big is the potential for a business like yours? Any major customers that you now cater to? What kind of numbers do you expect from a business like yours? Any statistics to compare with international standards?
IDfy is looking at couple of large greenfield areas which have not been tapped globally. We are in the business of people decisions across many different use cases such as Hiring, Dating, Tenancy, Banking, or even online transactions. We would like to be a part of every single decision about an individual. Our vision is to have data on over one billion people of India. As you can imagine, this is a huge opportunity.
We see a potential market of over $2-3 billion in India alone,while the addressed market is just over $500 million. We want to completely disrupt and redefine the way people interact with others. At first we are looking at disrupting the background verification market, which is a $20 billion market globally, and India is one of the fastest growing markets in this space.
How do you plan to scale up; raise funds through seed or venture capital or simply grow the old fashioned way through rising turnovers?
We are already venture funded by NEA, Blume, and Beenos Capital. We will hit break-even within the next two quarters. While we do intend to raise more capital for scale,we also intend to be profitable along the way through each fund raising.
Who would primarily be your consumer audience?
We have both sets–enterprise as well as consumer side of our business. On the enterprise side we look to cater to any company that hires people, across both blue and white-collar employers. On the consumer side, we have a broader applicability and think that IDfy can play a part in addressing transactions between any two people.
Where do you see yourself five years down the road?
Five years from now, I expect IDfy to be the go-to company for people decisions. Additionally we expect to expand operations in other parts of Asia as well.