- Zoho builds on the technology it has created over the past 25 years, which has enabled it to launch products faster. s.
- Other companies are acquiring technology, which is a big deal these days, Zoho says.
- Zoho entered edtech with TrainerCentral, which is seen as a rival to “Coursera” and “Udemy”.
- The company now has more than 50 applications in all major categories of activity: sales, marketing, customer support, accounting, etc.
Zoho, a software as a service (SaaS) company led by Sridhar Vembu, has launched more than ten new products and services in the past eleven months.
They promise not only to serve their regular business customers, but also to branch out into new verticals to serve a whole new set of customers – from teachers to carpenters to small store owners and more.
But if you dig below the surface, Zoho has already done most of its work.
The company is leveraging technology and adding functionality to the products it has created over the past 25 years of its existence, which has enabled Zoho to enter new verticals at lightning speed.
“Zoho has spent the past two decades building a strong technology stack that spans the infrastructure layer to the experience layer. All of Zoho’s 50+ business applications are built on this stack, along with a common data model, Praval Singh, vice president of marketing and customer experience at Zoho Corp, told Business Insider.
He noted that by working on products for almost any business need, Zoho has acquired the skills and know-how to work on adjacent areas as well. The company started working on an audio-video (AV) framework ten years ago and the same framework is used for several Zoho products and offerings.
|Product / Service||What does it do?||Core technology|
|Zoho meeting||Ease of video calling||Audio-visual technology|
|Central trainer||An educational infrastructure to enable teachers to teach online||Audio-visual technology|
|Zoho lens||Smart remote assistant app, which allows technicians to set up online stores||Audio-visual technology|
|Zoho BackToWork||Work preparation solution||Zoho Creator low-code platform|
Zoho’s argument is that they’ve built their own tech stack and while most other startups and tech companies have built their offering through acquisition, this is a “growing problem in the industry.”
These already developed AV, AI and machine learning technologies make it easier for Zoho to create new products and enter new segments much faster. For example, adding a layer of augmented reality and analysis to these allows it to offer remote assistance.
“The common framework also makes us agile. A new product that we start working on can immediately use our existing micro-services (such as single sign-on) instead of having to reinvent the wheel, ”Singh said, adding that Zoho management was with the company for over a decade. .
The company now has more than 50 applications in all major categories of activity: sales, marketing, customer support, accounting, etc. The company claims to have 70 million users in 500,000 businesses.
Singh also mentioned that Zoho’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology such as Natural Language Processing (NPL) is adopted in all of the products of these various Zoho brands.
Zoho also launched Zoho Commerce in 2019 to allow retailers to set up their online stores and provide them with tools to build websites, accept orders, track inventory and more. This offer will allow 100 product companies to set up online stores in three weeks. The offering also features similar features like Zoho Lens and TrainerCentral.
Zoho’s latest offer is an attempt to take on Coursera and Udemy
Zoho entered the online learning space with the launch of its latest vertical business TrainerCentral last week. It offers digital platforms to enable individual teachers, solopreneurs and experts in a particular field to offer online training.
TrainerCentral – which will be a sister of Zoho’s other brands, ManageEngine, Zoho and Qntrl – offers tools such as website builder, business admin console, learner portal, payment gateway, online conferencing line and analysis for trainers.
Aarthi Elizabeth, chief brand evangelist TrainerCentral at Zoho, told Business Insider US that Trainer Central is seen as a rival to “Coursera and Udemy,” which allows individuals and universities to offer their courses online.
Coursera and Udemy offer a comprehensive catalog of online courses. Meanwhile, Zoho’s TrainerCentral provides a link to trainers who want to run live online sessions or courses with their students or clients.
Zoho has no ownership rights in the content, nor any control over the courses offered to customers. It simply rents its software to allow trainers to train online, with a subscription fee of up to 3,000 per month.
|Companies||Market capitalization, as of December 7||User base|
|Udemy||$ 2.83 billion||Over 35 million|
|Coursera||$ 3.85 billion||Over 77 million|
Source: NASDAQ, media reports
The platform plans to integrate with Zoho CRM (customer relationship management) soon to help trainers interact with prospects better and convert customers faster.
“Zoho was already in the learning infrastructure space with ShowTime, which was a platform to host live virtual training sessions, webinars, and web conferences, thus already having an established community of trainers. and learners, which is a benefit as they don’t have to develop a user base from scratch. They provide this same community with a more advanced platform to grow their businesses and learn better, ”Founder and CEO of investment firm Blacksoil, Ankur Bansal, told Business Insider.
Correction: A previous version of the story has been corrected to reflect Zoho’s perspective. Zoho Commerce’s launch date has been corrected in 2019 and changes have been made to show that TrainerCentral is not just a B2B product.
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