#Asia Indian software eating the world: here’s evidence


SaaS startups in India 1

Here’s some more validation for Indian startups targeting global markets with B2B (business-to-business) software products. Mumbai startup Customer360 announced its acquisition yesterday by US-based Interactive Intelligence, a provider of cloud-based customer engagement software, for an undisclosed amount.

Customer360 provides live chat and mobile in-app tools on the cloud for customer support. It has over 1,000 clients. “The team at Customer360 has built an enterprise-grade platform that enables contact center agents to give the kind of personalized, real-time experience they demand,” said Jeff Swartz, vice-president of development for Interactive Intelligence.

Mitul Thakkar, CEO of Customer360, said:

This acquisition is a testimony to B2B startups in India. Our team has worked hard to reinforce the fact that global products can be developed here.

Mitul is a former Yahoo executive with a master’s degree in computer science from the State University of New York. His co-founder Mayuresh Shilotri is a former Cognizant executive with an MBA from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras.

Mitul and Shilotri along with all 30 Customer360 employees will join Interactive Intelligence but remain in their Mumbai office. Interactive Intelligence wants to include Customer360 products into its PureCloud customer engagement services.

Customer360 raised funding two years ago from angel investor Vishwas Patel, CEO of CCAvenue, and subsequently another round from CCAvenue and Milind Mody, CEO of eBrandz Solutions.


The Customer360 team

See: SaaS is the new black – and it has found a place in Chennai

SaaS surge from India

Indian software product think-tank iSPIRT, India’s first software products think-tank, supported the Customer360 acquisition as part of its M&A Connect Program. “The Customer360 team has developed high-quality technology and we are excited to see them continuing their journey as part of Interactive Intelligence,” said Sanat Rao, Partner (M&A) at iSPIRT.

B2B (business-to-business) software emerged as a hot area for funding this year in India, with 83 deals worth US$435 million in the first three quarters, according to data from Tracxn.

Customer support software makers were among the highest funded ones: Freshdesk raised a US$50 million funding round while customer analytics firm Capillary Technologies had a US$45 million round. The south Indian city of Chennai has emerged as a SaaS hub with its SaaSx conference proving to be a big draw in its second year.

India’s transition from the world’s back office for software services to a maker of software products for a global innovation blowback appears to be surging ahead.

See: Why India must fix its obsession with software services and pivot to products

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