Elastic to expand in India after global layoffs, says CEO Ashutosh Kulkarni
American-Dutch software company Elastic NV is in expansion mode in India and is planning to increase its workforce and acquire smaller companies in the country, its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Ashutosh Kulkarni, told Business Standard, days after announcing global layoffs.
The search-powered solutions provider announced a reduction of its global workforce by 13 per cent while announcing the results for Q2FY23 on November 30. The company reduced its headcount from 3,200 to 2,800, in order to align its investments more closely with its strategic priorities.
Founded in 2012, the $5 billion company provides enterprise search, observability, and security through its flagship offering ELK Stack. It serves global system integrators including customers like Uber, Booking.com, and various government agencies.
Kulkarni said a shift in the profile of the company’s investments led to the job cuts and the layoffs were mostly limited to the small and medium business (SMB) division of the company.
“We still have a large number of SMB customers, but we now reach them primarily through digital demand generation. We felt that we could do it much more efficiently through a low-cost digital mechanism instead of sales-led motions,” he said.
The Mountain View-headquartered SaaS provider plans to grow the size of its engineering, customer engagement, sales, and partner teams in India. The company currently employs some 120 people at three offices located in Gurgaon, Mumbai, and Bangalore.
“We are looking for a diverse set of talent and it is not just about the outsourcing strategy. India represents a tremendous talent pool, rapidly digitising businesses, and government policies in favour of digitization. This makes it a very exciting place to be,” Kulkarni said.
Elastic, which acquired three companies last year, is open to new partnerships globally, including in India according to Kulkarni. The company typically focuses on small technology acquisitions for technical functionalities that match its product strategy.
“We have a very strong balance sheet with over $800 million in cash. This strength can be used to do these kinds of acquisitions as we see appropriate. I am always looking for interesting ideas and the Indian market is extremely vibrant,” he said.
The macroeconomic uncertainties have prompted global tech giants including Meta, Amazon, Twitter, and Google to go through organizational restructuring and scale down their businesses to focus more on core offerings.
“Our products tend to be pretty resilient in terms of usage, as we are often used for observability, monitoring, and cyber security. The macroeconomic environment is something that everybody has to deal with and it makes things harder. But in the context of India, historically every time there has been macroeconomic stress, things have moved to India,” said Kulkarni.
He added that the country has reliable access to talent, infrastructure, demographics, and stable governmental policies needed during difficult times.
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