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In an interview with the editorial team of CIO Applications, Co-founders Desai and Bhatt discuss at length how Tntra is committed to delivering successful outcomes to impact the lives of its stakeholders for the better.
What are the factors that led to the inception of Tntra?
Desai: Back in the early 2000s, Bhatt and I worked together to launch a product company that focused on mobile wallets, mobile commerce, and mobile payments. Although we sold this company to MasterCard in 2014, it laid the foundation for our product engineering and software engineering capabilities at large. Subsequently, we worked on multiple companies—one of which was a professional services company with a focus on delivering software product engineering as a service. We focused on building the product for our clients, and in certain cases, we developed a patent portfolio and a captive engineering team. We call this the three Ps—product, patent, and people. Backed by the extensive experience we gained over the years, we decided to launch Tntra to provide software services and product engineering to partners.
Please provide us with a quick overview of Tntra’s capabilities and services.
Desai: Any entity that has mature, wellestablished systems will always need software services. Alongside that, every company, whether small, medium, or large, invariably wants to keep pushing forward in terms of launching new products, services, and in some cases even disrupting themselves, while addressing customer needs. On the other hand, we also see a need for building intellectual property (IP)- led products and services. This implies that there is a requirement for constant digital transformation to be addressed.
Under Tntra engineering, we offer software services, IP-led product engineering or PODs (building products, patents, and people), and bring a unique approach to digital transformation to effectively manage this ongoing evolution from mature services to unique products.
Bhatt: Drawing upon our experience in fintech, the internet of things (IoT), healthtech, supply chain and new economy industries, we are currently in the process of building domain-specific practices. We are supported by marquee mentors around the world with in-depth expertise in all these domains.
What differentiates us is the breadth of services that we offer— engineering services, incubation, and venture funding, all under a single platform with the singular focus of driving sustainable innovation
This helps us offer software services, product engineering, as well as digital transformation but with a domainspecific focus. We work with customers across the U.S., Japan, Singapore, the Middle East, and Europe. We’ve just started with incubation and ventures and plan to scale them up gradually over the next 12 months. What differentiates us is the breadth of services that we offer—engineering services, incubation, and venture funding, all under a single platform with the singular focus of driving sustainable innovation.
Please elaborate more on your client engagement methodology driving the open innovation ecosystem.
Desai: We embrace a customer-centric focus and put customers at the center of everything. We understand what their needs and concerns are and then branch them out to answer multiple questions around their requirements—“Is there an immediate requirement for a mature system and can we effectively provide software services?” “Do they need IP-led products while launching a new product or a service and should we engage on the new product engineering side?” “How do we bring in an overlay to the digital transformation aspect?” Once we ascertain all of these through the discovery process, we internally assign the right capabilities, skills, and people to deliver services accordingly. We have our own academy for training and continuing education – Tntra Gurukula – that enables us to bring the appropriate culture and capabilities to our customers. Some forward-thinking customers look beyond their immediate software services and product engineering needs, leveraging our incubator, ventures and global network of marquee mentors. Our methodology essentially involves five different phases—from discovery on the front end to bringing our partners into the open innovation ecosystem.
Could you shed light on the unique hybrid model that you’re bringing to the table?
Bhatt: Our emerging hybrid model allows us to build an offshore POD and gradually migrate it to a nearshore or an onshore location as per the clients’ convenience. Our recent collaboration with a company in Japan demonstrates the efficacy of this model. Japan has some unique software services and IT requirements. Through the partnership, we are helping the company set up an entire ecosystem or an incubation center wherein we would be sending engineers from our team in India, and they will be working with their engineering team in Japan. In this way, we would gradually enable the Japanese engineers to build the innovation ecosystem.
Could you cite a customer success story?
Bhatt: One of our Europe-based clients engaged with us primarily to address their IP-led product needs and augment their engineering team. As we helped them with their engineering needs, our engagement further strengthened into part incubation and part ventures. Our customer is getting ready to raise their next round of funding, and Tntra ventures will most likely get involved in that round of funding. In this way, the entire Tntra platform supported the client to address their multiple needs.
What does the future hold for Tntra?
Desai: We want to keep scaling our engagements under engineering, whether it’s for mature services, IPled product engineering, or digital transformation. We have a couple of companies in the incubator, and we are planning to expand the incubator as a standalone construct over the next two years. With regards to ventures, we’ve already finalized our first couple of investments. Moving forward, we also envision Tntra ventures becoming a standalone construct alongside engineering and incubation. We intend to partner with like-minded ecosystems around the world that have a similar focus. Tying back to the three legs of Tntra that collectively help us drive innovation, our long-term vision is to turn the company into a unique global open innovation ecosystem.