ChrysCapital-backed Infogain Acquires AI & Analytics Pioneer Absolutdata

Los Gatos, Calif. – December 24, 2020 – Infogain, a Silicon Valley-based leader in human-centered digital platform and software engineering services, today announced its acquisition of Absolutdata, a San Francisco Bay Area-based AI and Advanced Analytics company serving Global 500 clients. Absolutdata’s award-winning NAVIK AI platform and 300 world-class data scientists will significantly enhance Infogain’s ability to engineer superior business outcomes for its clients through the use of cutting-edge AI and Analytics.

Absolutdata has been a leader in utilizing AI and Advanced Analytics to create scalable business impact for enterprise clients across the globe. Using a combination of its proprietary NAVIK AI platform and AI & Advanced Analytics services, Absolutdata enables its clients to grow faster, increase profitable revenue and develop deeper relationships with their customers. Absolutdata has been widely recognized for its innovation and cutting-edge AI solutions.

Infogain’s CEO Sunil Bhatia said, “Infogain’s acquisition of Absolutdata completes our three-pronged acquisitions strategy to help customers’ increasing demand for adopting digital platforms by employing strategy and experience, cloud transformation, and advanced analytics and AI services. Absolutdata’s AI & advanced analytics solutions will transform how companies gain insights, make decisions, and drive business growth. I am confident in our teams’ abilities to collaborate, innovate and create significant value for our clients.  We welcome Absolutdata’s clients and employees to our growing Infogain family.  The acquisition will increase Infogain’s presence in additional market segments such as CPG, telecom, and pharma.”

Absolutdata’s CEO Anil Kaul, Ph.D, said, “Companies across the globe are increasingly looking towards a combination of Technology and AI/Analytics to drive scalable, sustained & profitable business growth. The COVID-19 pandemic has further accelerated digital transformation across organizations. We are thrilled to be joining the Infogain team as we share a like-minded commitment to driving business success through disruptive technologies. As a unified team and company, we are very well positioned to service our clients’ requirements comprehensively and innovatively, as well as providing tremendous growth opportunities for Absolutdata employees.”

This acquisition, Infogain’s third in 14 months, follows its acquisitions of Houston-based Silicus Technologies and Seattle-based Revel Consulting. Data, analytics and artificial intelligence are strategic focus areas for Infogain and will account for 15% of its revenue post-acquisition.

Infogain’s COO Ayan Mukerji, said, “NAVIK AI represents our first commercially available SaaS platform and is part of our broader strategy of helping our clients leverage digital platforms combined with our transformational service offerings. We aim to double our analytics customer base over the next two years and are confident that this acquisition will help us significantly toward achieving that goal.” He added, “Infogain in turn will leverage its strategy & experience, data estate and cloud transformation services to expand our footprint across Absolutdata’s customers to help accelerate digital adoption.”

Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich & Rosati is serving as legal counsel to Infogain in the United States, Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co. as legal counsel to Infogain in India, and KPMG as the financial and tax advisor to Infogain.  Ernst & Young is serving as the exclusive selling advisor.

About Infogain

Infogain is a human-centered digital platform and software engineering company based out of Silicon Valley. We engineer business outcomes for Fortune 500 companies and digital natives in the technology, healthcare, insurance, travel, and retail industries using technologies such as cloud, microservices, automation, IoT, and artificial intelligence. We accelerate experience-led transformation in the delivery of digital platforms. Infogain is also a Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) Gold Partner and Azure Expert Managed Services Provider (MSP).

Infogain, a ChrysCapital portfolio company, has offices in California, Washington, Texas, the UK, the UAE and Singapore, with delivery centers in Austin, Kraków, New Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, and Bengaluru. To learn more, visit www.infogain.com.

For more information, contact:

Cathy Chandhok
Cathy.Chandhok@infogain.com
+1 (408) 355-6028
+ 91 98115-02386

IncubateIND: 5 Big Data Analytics Trends for 2019 – Naveen Arigapudi

An authored article by Naveen Arigapudi, that appeared in IncubateIND’s tech forum.

The promising evolution of Big Data and Analytics

Hyperscale data generated by digital connected devices and real-time Customer Experiences are driving a dramatic shift in analytics environments and driving actionable outcomes. Which technology trends should CIOs and CDOs be leveraging to boost their data driven initiatives?

Here are the Top 5 Big Data Analytics Trends in 2019 and beyond:

Augmented Analytics

Augmented analytics, an approach that automates insights using machine learning and natural-language generation, is the next wave of disruption in the data and analytics market. augmented analytics automates as many processes as possible, giving business users access to real insight and act on data quickly and accurately.

Gartner analyst Rita Sallam calls the approach “the next disruption in Analytics and BI”.By 2019, 50% of analytics queries will be generated using search, natural-language query or voice, or will be auto-generated.

Self-Serve Analytics Platforms and Citizen Data Scientists

The prevalence of data science and self-service analytics platforms such as Alteryx and Alpine Data will continue to give rise to citizen data scientists, those business users from cross-functional teams across enterprises who use data for everyday business decisions. These users can perform advanced analytics without having the skill set of a data scientist and with minimal dependency on IT. This frees up trained data scientists to be involved in more critical data analysis.

Edge Computing

Edge Computing, which allows information processing at the device or gateway level rather than within the cloud or a data center, has been a part of the technological space streaming network performance for quite a while now. McKinsey estimates that of the $500 billion in growth expected for IoT through 2020, approximately 25 percent will be directly related to edge technology. Edge computing will continue to help improve data compression and transfer in the connectivity layer of the technology stack, reducing network bandwidth and making a wider range of IoT applications possible.

Emergence of Enterprise Data Catalogs

The Enterprise Data Catalog serves as a single place for an organization to contain its assets. It’s an AI-powered data catalog that provides a machine- learning-based discovery engine to scan and catalog data assets across the enterprise—across cloud and on-premises, and big data anywhere. A recent report from Gartner, Data Catalogs Are the New Black in Data Management and Analytics finds that demand for data catalogs is soaring as organizations struggle to inventory distributed data assets to facilitate data monetization and conform to regulations.

Cognitive Technologies and AI

Cognitive technologies, a product of artificial intelligence (AI), has been evolving over decades, but the technology has improved dramatically in the last few years, especially in the areas of computer vision, natural language processing, speech recognition, and robotics.

According to research by IDC, between 2017 and 2021, global spending on AI-focused systems is expected to grow at a CAGR of 50 percent reflecting $200 billion in cumulative spending across an array of sectors including health care, retail, banking, and manufacturing.

(The author is the AVP – BI and Big Data Analytics at Infogain – a Silicon Valley headquartered company with expertise in software platform engineering and deep domain skills in travel, retail, insurance, automotive, and high technology. Infogain accelerates the delivery of digital customer engagement systems using digital technologies such as cloud, micro-services, robotic process automation, and Artificial Intelligence.)

How to Optimize Price without Marginal Loss for SKU’s with a shorter shelf life

The shelf life of a product is a length of time an SKU can be stored on shelf without becoming unfit for use. Retailers commonly use the strategy of “Stock Rotation and Rationalization” — moving the SKU’s with the earliest sell dates so that shoppers pick them before the expiration date without any loss to the retailer.

Sometimes it becomes necessary to sell the slow-moving SKU’s with a shorter shelf life at a lower price point to increase the velocity of SKU.

When a SKU/Product Line is sold at a lower price point or a discounted price, it results in a Marginal Loss to the retailer. For retailers, coming up with maximum possible discount without incurring a Marginal Loss is a challenge.

Infogain’s Analytical Approach

Co-efficient Estimate for price variables

(Co-efficient = Delta Y / Delta X) Step 1: Co-efficient Estimation
Based on the distribution of the data, the appropriate Statistical Equation is applied to the data to estimate the co-efficient of price Variables.:

Y = Velocity of a Product Line of perishable Product Line/List of SKU

  1. X1 = Discounted Price (Percent)
  2. X2 = Relative Regular Price Index (Our price / Competition regular Price) +
  3. X3 = Digital Media+
  4. X4 = Seasonality
  5. X5 = Non-Digital Media
  6. X6 = Competition Media
  7. X7 = Any Other Macro / Micro Factors

Key Factors of the Co-Efficient Price Equation

  • The Non–Price variable data will help in estimating the co-efficient of Price Variables accurately.
    If Non–Price data is not available; the equation will be run with price variables alone.
  • The contribution to revenue other than price will be attributed to Base.
  • In order to accurately simulate a scenario with an optimal discount without any marginal loss, it is critical to measure the influence of all factors (including competition and media). Based on the category and market, seasonality could be removed from the data if it is not provided.

Infogain’s Price Optimization to estimate Optimal Discount

Infogain’s Algorithm uses the co-efficient obtained from the co-efficient estimate for price variables equation, running Optimization to arrive at an optimal discount price point based on Marginal ROI Analysis:

  • Marginal ROI at a time (t2) = Delta Total Value Sales (t2-t1) / Delta Total Cost (t2-t1)
  • Total Revenue at a time (t) = Total Units sold at a time (t) * Selling Price at time (t)
  • Total Cost = Total Units Sold * Marginal Cost.
    Marginal Cost = Cost of producing one additional unit of product
  • Delta value sales = Values sales at 30% discount rate minus value sales at 25% discount rate

Although the Volume Sales will go up with the increased discount, Value Sales won’t necessarily go up as well.

Infogain’s Optimization Approach Illustrated

Optimization: Mathematical Linear Programming and Optimization

Objective Function: Minimize the Delta Value Sales

Variable: Discount Percent

Constraint: Marginal ROI should be equal to 1

Optimal Discount Percent based on Marginal ROI Analysis = Discount percent 15%
Discount Percent Point without incurring Marginal loss = 30%
Any Discount beyond 30% will lead to Marginal loss

Infogain’s Value Addition—Scenario Planning for data driven decision making

  1. BASE SCENARIO:

What is the base /current scenario? Marginal cost and profit evaluation of current Situation

(Are you currently below optimal Discount or above Optimal Discount or incurring loss? Or is there any scope of improvement)

  1. SCENARIO WITH OPTIMAL DISCOUNT RATE:

What is the Optimal Discount Rate? (15 % as seen above)

  1. MAXIMUM DISCOUNT RATE WITHOUT INCURRING MARGINAL LOSS:

What is the highest possible discount rate that can be offered without incurring marginal loss? (Ex. Scope to increase discount rate up to 30% as seen above)

Assumptions and Complexities

  1. According to the Managerial Microeconomic price-demand theory, price and demand always has an inverse relationship. With a decrease in regular price (increase in discount rate) an increase in demand is observed.

This relationship is mostly linear in nature.  Infogain has suggested Linear Programing for optimization based on the Domain experience, managerial economic price demand function theory and APAC Market Knowledge. If we don’t see a linear relationship between price and demand, however, an appropriate non –linear programming will be applied for Optimization and statistical equation based on trend observed in the data.

  1. Seasonality factor can be extrapolated by Infogain if not provided.
  1. Assumption is made that media and competition data will be available to estimate co- efficient of price accurately

Conclusion

The Marginal ROI Model is used for solving many computational financial problems ranging from Option Pricing to investment decisions such as cost minimization and profit maximization. Several Marketing and Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) companies have adopted the Marginal ROI Analysis for best pricing in order to achieve Maximize Profitability.

Linear programming Marginal ROI Model can help retailers select the best possible discount strategy for perishable goods without incurring any marginal loss . The Scenario planner can help them evaluate the marginal cost vs profit of various discount alternatives. The Model can also help retailers forecast profitability for future.

To learn more about the Infogain’s  Linear programming Marginal ROI Model, contact analytics@infogain.com.

About Infogain

Infogain is a global business-oriented IT consulting provider of front-end, customer-facing technologies, processes and applications, leading to a more efficient and streamlined customer experience. We want our clients’ interactions with their customers to be fast, efficient, and cost effective.

With close to 4,000 employees in the United States, India, the Middle East, U.K., Singapore and Malaysia, we service 5 of the world’s largest 50 companies, and 24 of the Fortune 500. we have million-dollar engagements with over 25 customers, many of which have been with us for 5 years or more.

Will Mid-Tier Indian IT Companies Sink or Swim in the Era of Digital and Automation?

IT firms that are still not the billion-dollar babies they wanted to be have rebooted to seize the digital opportunity in a choppy sea.

Last Friday, Bengaluru-headquartered Mindtree BSE -4.36 % informed stock markets about independent director VG Siddhartha stepping down from the board to focus on his business, Coffee Day Group.

Siddhartha continues to be invested in the $780-million IT services firm, but it was the end of a tenure spanning 18 years. During this period, he witnessed the abrupt departure of executive chairman and Mindtree’s first chief executive Ashok Soota in 2011 (when the company was less than half its current size).

In 2016, the Mindtree board appointed its third chief executive, Rostow Ravanan, who succeeded Krishnakumar Natarajan. However, for at least a decade, each of these top managers often faced one question — when will Mindtree cross $1 billion in revenue? It hasn’t happened in 19 years.

In its first decade, a couple of investors rued the fact that Mindtree’s annual business was what the larger IT companies did in a couple of months. The IT services providers were competing to expand repeatable outsourcing services, known within industry as ‘application development and maintenance.’ Such deals were typically multi-year contracts, which meant predictability of revenue.

A similar wave — infrastructure management — followed, which HCL Technologies BSE -4.20 % focused on to sneak into the Big IT Club, behind TCS BSE 0.12 %, Cognizant, Infosys BSE -2.16 % and Wipro BSE -2.60 %. The top four had ridden the Y2K wave at the turn of the century.

For companies such as Mindtree, which haven’t touched the $1-billion mark yet, the question now is, how prepared are they to win business in the era of digital and automation? For enterprise clients globally, the new wave involves amortising investments that have been made in the past decade or so, while building for consumers who spend more time online and on smart devices.

For the IT companies that serve them, it is about winning digital IT dollars – which begin as projects – while applying automation to rein in productivity and improve margins. And by the way, it is still intensely competitive. It is also more fragmented. Amit Singh, who heads the IT practice at advisory Avendus, says the IT services outsourcing business is worth around $1 trillion.

“The 25th company in the pecking order is about $1 billion in size and the top 25 corner $350 billion of the market,” he explains. That leaves a considerable $650 billion to fight for between companies that make less than $1 billion in annual revenues. “This is a hugely fragmented market, with a whole lot of small- and midtier companies,” Singh adds. Among these fragmented players are lots of “relics of the past,” says Sanjay Kukreja, partner, ChrysCapital. “In IT services, it is very easy not to change as you make good margins. But these (companies which don’t change) are the ones which will be irrelevant very soon.”

Even as most might perish, large companies will emerge from this fragmented heap. “The death knell for mid-tier has not been rung. But they should not try to be the next labour arbitrage guy. You need the right technology, people and platforms to succeed,” says Kukreja.

DAVID VERSUS GOLIATH
Hexaware is one of the pack that has grown and expanded its senior leadership. The process began after founder Atul Nishar brought in R Srikrishna as chief executive from HCL Technologies in 2014. Hexaware crossed the $600-million mark in financial year ending December 2017. “We are not just going up against somebody our size. But we fancy our chances to beat the Goliaths each time,” Srikrishna says, referring to the importance of culture to run small multi-disciplinary teams. “This is David versus Goliath.”

At a time when digital project sizes are small, that is not a bad analogy. Mid-sized companies aim for projects in the $0.5-5 million range—not the $10-50 million a year deals like before. Liken these to the stones for Davids’ slings. “Earlier, the biggest concern for the market was that mid-sized companies’ revenue were concentrated with one or two clients,” Srikrishna says. “So growing in the middle is a positive long-term win—each of these clients has an opportunity to go upward in deals pipeline.”

In financial year 2017, Hexaware took its $1-5 million deal tally to 71, from 64 in the previous year. Srikrishna says this tastes just as sweet as the six deals won in the $10-20 million bracket (twice the number of deals in 2016). “‘Land and expand’ is a big thing,” says Sunil Bhatia, chief executive of Infogain, a Silicon Valley headquartered firm, backed by ChrysCapital. Estimated to be less than $200 million in revenue, it employs 4,000 persons, mostly operating in Noida and Bengaluru. “We have 25 of the Fortune 1000 companies as customers.

The first strategy is to land the business and second is to get repeat business and expand. We have to bring high-touch services to the customer.” Arvind Thakur, managing director of NIIT Technologies, agrees, emphasising the need for a culture shift inside the company to provide high-touch services outside. Digital revenue accounts for a quarter of NIIT’s business, up from 11% in the previous year.

The digital business has five paths: first, creating omni-channel experiences for enterprise clients, or designing solutions that use technology to deliver a great physical experience for clients’ end customers. Second, analytics and business intelligence. Third, helping clients migrate applications to cloud. Fourth, digital orchestration and integration.

“Data resides in legacy systems — we are helping by integrating digital with legacy and orchestrating new processes to offer hyper specialisation to customers,” Thakur says. Finally, acquisitions such as Incessant Technologies in 2015 and RuleTek last year. Incessant enables clients to automate and integrate back-end systems with a digital front end, through alliance partnerships with platform providers like Pegasystems and Appian, while RuleTek in the US helped NIIT improve digital integration capabilities and to expand its North America footprint.

CULTURE KEY

Last year, NIIT invited management thinker Ron Kaufman, who runs a company that specialises in customer experience. “Based on interactions with Kaufman, we put in place the building blocks to drive new ideas, behaviour traits and create new role models. We educated everyone on service excellence experience,” Thakur says.

Bhatia says building this culture is a huge opportunity for mid-sized companies while competing against the service providers that generate more than $10 billion revenue per year. “Changing the culture of a 10,000-people company is far easier than trying to change the mindset of 2,00,000 employees,” points out Thakur. Bhatia cites ChrysCapital-backed LiquidHub, which was acquired by Capgemini recently. LiquidHub focused on a few areas and created a position in digital transformation that Capgemini found attractive. “In the new era, you don’t need truckloads of people—you need more brain than brawn,” says Bhatia.

Not everyone is convinced. Sudheer Guntupalli, equity analyst, Ambit Capital, says scale begets scale in IT services. “Clients seek to do business with vendors who have a certain number of client references from the same industry segment and geography,” he explains. They check for adequate number of trained resources and cutting-edge capabilities in relevant service lines. “That’s why they prefer working with vendors who have the highest scale in the relevant geography, vertical (industry) or service lines.”

Prateek Majumdar, partner, Bain & Company, begs to differ. Scale is no longer as important as it used to be. “What matters more are the capabilities and IP the company has. That’s why some digitalfocused mid-tier companies have been doing really well.” According to Sid Pai, managing partner, Tekinroads Consulting, mid-sized companies need to be aware of the ratio of traditional to new business (digital). In his career as an enterprise client advisor, he saw the likes of Infosys and TCS seize the Y2K wave, followed by the infrastructure services wave that HCL pounced upon.

“While absolute size still matters, the ability to harness the current opportunity depends on relative exposure to traditional business,” Pai says. “There is a large-scale transformation underway in the market, which will take 3-5 years to play out. Some organisations will move faster than other organisations. So, it is about being faster and nimbler players.” Mindtree, which started building its digital story in 2011-12, referred to the lessons during its December 2017 analyst earnings call. Digital revenue is realised differently from the traditional multi-year (predictive) revenue model.

“Price realisation increased mainly due to additional revenue generated with some projects moving from transition to steady state,” said chief financial officer Jagannathan CN. During the transition phase, the client is paying multiple vendors, so transition pricing tends to be lower than “steady-state” pricing. “As (more) work gets picked up and it moves into steady state, revenues are higher.” Equally, there is a danger for the middle rung. With vendor consolidation, midsized companies get pushed out. “Clients can re-evaluate outsourcing partners at any time and if they want to reduce the number of vendors, it’s usually the small, mid-tier ones,” says Milan Sheth, technology leader at advisory EY India.

Remember, mid-sized firms lack pricing power as they don’t have the economies of scale of larger IT firms. “It puts pressure on margins as they offer services at costs lower than their larger peers,” Sheth explains. “For a long time, their business grew because they were cheaper than larger players, not because they differentiated.” So, how will the Davids fight the Goliaths? The big IT companies are organised— to be harsh, even siloed. Pai says, “What is going to make a difference in the market for mid-sized companies is to go after deals with smaller teams of highly capable people who can go all the way, from assessing customer need to design needs to actually building technically, and then managing and delivering it right across the stack.” Picture a rugby scrum.

Srikrishna is confident his teams at Hexaware are already making an impact. “Team and solutions go hand in hand. Its strategy is focused on “bringing together man and machine” to deliver for clients. “It’s very hard for a legacy player to execute that way. Digital is not the only thing we will do. We will focus on traditional outsourcing but deliver it in differently.” The $1 billion milestone isn’t the vanity metric anymore, as execution on a projectby-project basis has taken precedence, especially for an industry which trade body Nasscom estimates will grow 7-9% over the next fiscal. “Growth has slowed down in the industry overall, for large and midtier players. But, we should see at least a couple of players hit the $1-billion mark relatively soon,” says Majumdar of Bain.

Mphasis has breached the billion-dollar mark and Larsen & Toubro Infotech (LTI) is not far behind. The latter is spearheaded by Sanjay Jalona, who ChrysCapital’s Kukreja describes as “among the brightest talent in IT services business.” Jalona came from Infosys and has, in turn, hired 30 others in the last 12 months from across companies to beef up digital services. “The changing technology landscape is resulting in shrinking of deal sizes, bringing mid-sized and large sized players onto a level playing field,” Guntupalli says. “In that context, high quality mid-sized companies can overcome the scale disadvantage that they earlier had.”

News Originally Posted on: TheEconomicTimes

Business Analytics Practice

  • Application of big data technology on unstructured data to perform sentiment analytics
  • Optimized cost of analytics infrastructure by deploying low cost distributed machines
  • Generating New Revenue Streams for the clients by creating analytical products
  • Keeping the tool-set in line with technology to achieve increased benefits at lower cost

Data Analytics – Reshaping the Future of Travel & Hospitality Sector

John Owens, VP – Travel & Hospitality, Infogain

Headquartered in California, Infogain is a global leader in providing IT services like Knowledge Management, CRM, Integration, Mobility, Software Engineering and Application Management solutions to organizations worldwide.

Travel and hospitality sector is a growing sector and the incessant development of travel and hospitality industry has been motivating the key industry players to embrace exceptional measures for enhancing business efficiency by improving overall customer experience. A lot of travel industry tycoons are eyeing the science of consumerism to take the pulse of the consumers. The industry giants are concentrating more on the dynamic behavior of consumers so that they can forecast business profitability generated by enhancing sales.

Consumers of the 21st century are more tech-savvy; thanks to smartphones that enable the Gen Y consumers to go for mobile bookings in the comfort of their home. In such a state of affairs, it becomes highly imperative to keep an eye on changing consumer behavior and make the most of the digitalized trends in travel and hospitality sector. Unfortunately, the truth is that more and more hotels adhere to the age-old norms instead of adapting to the modern trends. Being a data-rich industry, hotels and travel service providers should employ analytics to take advantage of the data to make huge profits.

Why Should Travel & Hospitality Sector Utilize Data Analytics?

Travel and hospitality sector underwent a radical revolution over the last decade owing to –
– Ever-growing technological innovation and digitization.