Bangalore startup Aurigo shows new route to revenues – IT Voice | Online IT Media

Bangalore startup Aurigo shows new route to revenues


Here’s a measure of the advances that Indian software product startups are making. Bangalore-based Aurigo Software Technologies has won a seven-year contract from Ontario’s ministry of transportation, a contract for which vendors from around the world were invited and one that is likely to be worth well over $20 million (Rs 120 crore). 

The project evaluation was a three-stage, year-long process, and though the names of the others who bid have not been disclosed, the ones that Aurigo normally sees itself competing against in projects of this nature are those like Oracle, Accenture, IBM and CGI. 

The Ontario project’s objective is to manage the entire lifecycle of an infrastructure contract digitally, and to do it efficiently and transparently. The ministry spends between $2 billion and $3 billion in transportation infrastructure every year, and the plan is to make it a completely paper-less process. 

The project is also unique in the way it has been designed and may set a trend for future government projects. The government itself does not pay anything. Aurigo will set up and manage a cloud-based platform that all contractors to the ministry will be obliged to use. And the contractors pay a small fee each time they use the platform. Ministry personnel too will use it, but at no cost. 

“The ministry of transportation of Ontario (MTO) is revolutionizing contract management,” says a ministry newsletter. 

Aurigo chairman Ravi Gulati says the project design is a new way of doing business. “Infrastructure is falling apart. Governments don’t have money to spend. So let the beneficiaries (the contractors) pay. It also increases project efficiency and brings savings for all,” says Gulati, an IIT-Kharagpur alumnus who worked in Honeywell, Nortel, Lucent and Siemens and founded a software company in the US that made a successful exit. 

Aurigo founder Balaji Sreenivasan likens the model to that of a toll road, where the government does not pay anything and only lays down specifications. “In our case, the government is able to put in place world class software without any expenditure, and contractors are happy to use it because they would not be able to build such systems themselves, and they would get their payments faster,” he says. 

Sreenivasan founded the company in 2003 and today it has 50 large customers, many of them city departments in the US and Canada that use the software to manage their capital programmes. The Ontrario project brings a new level in scale and design. “Some $200 billion worth of capital projects are being managed today with our software,” Sreenivasan said. Microsoft placed Aurigo among the world’s most innovative companies in 2010 and Red Herring put it among the top 100 global tech companies in 2011. 

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