Time for a “Fresh” Start!

Credits to @Aditya Dhotre for the creativity :)

Feels just like yesterday, when I walked out of Zoho, one last time..

Feels just like yesterday, when we started Zarget in that small apartment..

Feels like yesterday, when we were celebrating our VC funding..

Feels like yesterday, when we moved to An IT Park from an Apartment..

And today, we are here.. acquired by FreshWorks.. Wow..it’s been quite a ride alright :)

I’d like to thank Girish for making this transition a smooth one. Nothing has changed.. We will get better, faster — The team that we had built will continue to build the product that has been our brainchild. We will become stronger with more product updates and by joining hands with fresh minds :)

Girish shared the following thoughts about the acquisition -

Acquiring Zarget will enable Freshworks to support customers with the pre-acquisition journey as well and truly transform the way our customers attract and engage with their prospective customers. Also, I have known the Zarget team for many years and I am personally thrilled to have them join the Freshworks family and power our expansion into the marketing software category.

Building a company is not as simple as we thought it would be. Some days you’ll feel like you are at the top of the mountain, but most days you’ll be rolling in mood swings because of uncertainty. During my startup life, I learned a lot — more than what I learnt during my previous 11 years of life at Zoho.

There’s so much I can say about this journey, but I’ll restrict myself to sharing a few tips that I wish others had given me before I started this journey -

  • I listened to different podcasts and TEDTalks to understand what is the right way and what are the mistakes shouldn’t be made in a startup. But the bitter truth is that no one can say which is right and which is wrong — it’s you who knows your position the best. Not others. There are no startup experts. Every startup is reflective of the personalities of it’s founders. Stay true to yourself and do what your gut says.
  • Hiring is hard. Finding the person who fits your requirement to the T takes up a lot of time. So it is better to hire the ones who are willing to learn and adapt. Unless and until it is absolutely necessary, never ever hire just for the sake of hiring. It will add more problems at a later point of time.
  • All wheels should run uniformly to reach the destination. If there is a problem, fix it. It will be really tough, if you don’t. The longer you wait, the more painful it will be.
  • If you are trying to do something new, you’ll definitely get resistance/rejection from others. It’s ok to commit mistakes. You can win or lose. But at the end of the day you are going to learn more in your startup journey than you had ever imagined.
  • It’s easy to get caught up in what you can change and what you can’t. A lot things that aren’t in your control will happen. Getting frustrated won’t fix the problem. It will only affect your health.
  • I’ll stop with this — Travis Kalanick, Ex-CEO of Uber said “Entrepreneurship is a game of chess”. And being a chess player, I can relate to it. Every move that we make will have an impact at some point of time. It’s solving the traps and correctly assessing the position that matters. Be true to yourself and everything will fall in place :)

When you start a company and raise funding, you know there will be an exit (sooner or later) and that’s how everyone measures success. I see this acquisition as a recognition for all that time and hard work that we had put in :)

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank my friends who supported me. my mentors who guided me during tough days..Amma, Appa, Aarthi and Aparna for giving me confidence when I was down and reminding me what I’m capable of and being my morale booster through the years.

Special thanks to Anju for letting me go to office even on weekends :) Thanks to our awesome team for trusting us and be with us right through the journey. This wouldn’t have been possible without you guys.

And this post wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t talk about the one person who changed my life for the better, who showed me what we are capable of, who was with me when most needed — Santa (Zarget’s CTO) When I quit Zoho, I was nervous about the future. I discussed various things with him and the moment he said — “Ethu Nadathaalum paathukkalam da. Naan irukken. Start pannalam” (Whatever happens, I’ll be with you. Let’s start) I knew that we were in this for the long haul. He was/is my biggest confidence and my morale booster — Late night talks, beach walks, office night outs, long drives, phone calls, tea kadai product discussions and what not. I have talked with him a lot more than I had talked with Aparna while courting her ;) This guy is the best thing that has happened to me. Thanks Santa boyy :) Really glad that we will be continuing our bromance in FreshWorks as well :)

As for the next agenda — we will be working on full throttle preparing some big surprises for you!! Many of my friends are working here at FW and I’m really glad to be amongst my old friends again.

Starting my journey with Fresh thoughts :)

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