‘UST Global has established a robust start-up ecosystem with eye on innovation’

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM | Updated on June 22, 2018 Published on June 22, 2018

Sunil Kanch, CIO and Senior V-P, UST Global

Partnerships with industry titans such as Microsoft, Oracle, SAP and CA Technologies has not prevented digital technology services provider UST Global from reaching out to the start-up community. "We have set up a huge start-up ecosystem by roping in as many as 300 start-ups last year alone, to bring new innovations and technology to our customers," said Sunil Kanchi, CIO, and Senior V-P.


Attending the Microsoft 'Future Decoded' event at the UST Global campus here recently, Kanchi said the company had partnered both Microsoft and Google to train its employees. "But with start-ups, we have a unique model," he told BusinessLine, adding that the company is constantly looking out for the best partners to make employees future-ready. "The important thing is to identify individuals within, who have the ability and passion to constantly learn and be ready for whatever the future holds for them."

Kanchi joined UST Global in 2014 after his US-based start-up, Kanchi Technologies, which was into product development and engineering services, was acquired. He said UST Global’s strategy is to invest in the start-ups either with cash or by feeding ideas so it can work on them jointly.


The 300 start-ups roped in are spread across the globe, including Silicon Valley, the UK, Spain, Israel, Singapore, Asia-Pacific China, and even back home in Kerala. "Our CEO is very passionate about start-ups. We're putting together a fund of $50 million to grow the ecosystem even further. We've made some significant investments recently in a few start-ups."

The company has also completed some key acquisitions in this space in the last few years. It believes that this ecosystem is a significant space for inorganic growth going forward. "We invest so that individual companies grow by themselves and, eventually, we might look at acquiring some. Even if we don't, we ensure that we grow together.."

'Future Decoded' is a unique partnership with Microsoft aimed at bringing in leading technologies in the digital transformation space. Similar events are being held at the UST Global development centres in Kochi, Bengaluru, Chennai , Manila and Mexico.


The level of participation in Thiruvananthapuram exceeded expectations. It was mainly addressed at those working in the relevant technologies or who wanted to expand in those. "A significant part of our revenue comes through Microsoft technologies or by developing solutions based on those. So those were the first candidates, though we did not restrict anyone."

Asked how e-secure UST Global was as a work place, Kanchi said employees have access to podcasts, videocasts, and self-learning portals to receive tips. "At the end of it, we take a test to find their level of readiness. That's the basic thing we do as part of our information security management services."

From a system perspective, the company has hardened its systems, backed up by fail-safe mechanism. It didn't face any major issues during the recent wave of cyber attacks. "We've created a seven-layer security wall. Even if there's a human error, the systems are robust enough to take action," Kanchi said.

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Published on June 22, 2018
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