Freshworks Co-founder and CEO Girish Mathrubootham wrote in a blog post on Thursday that his firm "wasn't supposed to win". Mathrubootham wrote this a day after Freshworks become the first-ever Indian SaaS startup to have been listed on the prestigious New York stock exchange -- Nasdaq.
"Freshworks is the company that wasn't supposed to win. Whether we could differentiate ourselves in crowded markets, or compete with larger players, or build a global SaaS company from India, the doubts were always there. And people were not shy about telling me!" wrote Mathrubootham.
He explained that despite these "doubts", this team kept their heads down and focused on executing. He wrote, "We realised the profound meaning of what Steve Jobs once said, "Stay hungry, stay foolish".
Freshworks had started from a 700-square-foot warehouse in Chennai in 2010. Mathrubootham explained the idea behind his startup was to create a "fresh" helpdesk in response to poor customer service he experienced.
He said Freshworks was "unconventional" from the beginning. "Not for its own sake, but because we saw an opening in the market for a unique approach. We weren't founded in Silicon Valley. We didn't target large enterprises. We didn't have access to a been-there-done-that talent pool". The firm had a simple "mantra"- happy employees create happy customers.
Mathrubootham used the Tamil word "Kudumba" to describe the firm's culture. "It means family in Tamil, the language of Chennai. Kudumba is what binds us together. It celebrates our roots and reminds us of where we started. By creating a sense of family - Kudumba - we've been able to scale and grow".
He said that Freshworks success has been possible because of the dedication and commitment of its employees, customers, partners, and investors. "To all of you I say: thank you. Thank you for believing in us and everything we could accomplish. This is a proud moment for us, and today, I feel really good," the CEO wrote.
Laying out his plans for the future, Mathrubootham said, "...our dream is to be a disruptive player in the CRM market by breaking down the silos of marketing, sales, and customer support with a unified customer cloud. And in the future, we dream of breaking the silos of IT and HR, building a unified employee cloud."
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