Zoho will remain private: Co-founder Sridhar Vembu

Zoho’s Co-founder and CEO Sridhar Vembu emphasised that the company will stay private as long as he is there.

“We are going to stay private as long as I am there,” he said. “We are profitable and chosen to stay private,” he said at Zoholics24, the company’s annual conference held at Austin, US.

“We have zero debt in the balance sheet. We chose to stay private because we will have the freedom to investing in R&D and take care of our employees,” he added.

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“I live in a rural area where we run a school. We will also start manufacturing. It is about rural development combined with R&D,” he said. In 2019, Vembu moved to a remove village in Tenkasi in Tamil Nadu from the US. “I am an unusual CEO who lives in a remote village in India to find solutions to the problems of rural poverty,” he said.

Vembu emphasised on the need to keep employees happy. “If we keep employees happy, they will keep the customers happy. To avoid customer attrition, it is important to keep the employees happy. Investing in building skills and capabilities in people is as crucial as investment in products,” he said.

“Invest in locations where employees can afford a home. Expensive real estate if a cruel regressive tax on employees and a prestige tax on the company. If the location is expensive, we wont’ invest there,” he said.

(The writer is in Austin at the invitation of Zoho)

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