There is an increase in demand for IoT products as the products are simpler in terms of usage and handling and a multi-fold increase in productivity results – Raj Darji, Aarav Solutions, Full Interview

Raj Darji, Founder & CEO of Aarav Solutions

Raj Darji, Founder & CEO of Aarav Solutions

Aarav Solutions is a global product engineering and IT consulting services provider. Their clientele comes from a broad array of industries – Telecommunications, Banking & Finance, Government, Power and Utilities among various other B2B segments. Founded on 14th September 2012 by Raj Darji, today Aarav Solutions is a multi-million dollar revenue organization, winner of Oracle Specializations and Solutions awards for the year 2019. Aarav Solutions have operational offices and R&D centers in India, the USA, and Canada with sales presence across Asia, Australia and MEA regions. Raj Darji is the Founder & CEO of Aarav Solutions leading the corporate functioning of the company in more than six countries internationally, with over 100 employees under its name. In a recent interaction with Team IT-Voice, he discussed the scope of IoT, digitalization, and the organization in detail. Here is an excerpt from the interaction:

Prateek: Please tell us about the journey of Aarav Solutions.

Raj Darji: I am a techie who drew my entrepreneurial journey taking lessons from farmland. My professional stint started in the USA from 2007-2011 has a lot of bearings in shaping the vision for the company. I faced some highs and lows in my career and noticed the same happening to others. Coming from a humble background I understood the need to give back to society with collective wealth creation. With this idea, I started Aarav Solutions on 14th September 2012 and named the company after my son Aarav.

While setting up a company and growing to a certain level, are considered the easy parts of an entrepreneurial journey, scaling up tests the mettle of the entrepreneur. We as an organization faced issues in 2015-16. However, 2016 was a landmark year for the company as we bagged our first independent clients, Raipur Department Authority (RDA) and Tikona Infinet. Before that, the firm was working with many big clients through big IT services companies such as Capgemini, Wipro, Tech Mahindra, and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) among others. In 2020 we decided to diversify our portfolio and launched our product range of next-generation technology like Adptx Cloud, Adptx Suite, Adptx Comm, and Adptx Utility. Earlier we were helping companies with only consulting services but now we have our own products to service them.

At a time, when the start-up space is replete with stories turning into unicorns through a series of fundraising activities, we still stick to the old-world wisdom of frugality. Despite clocking multimillion-dollar revenue within a span of less than a decade, ‘Aarav Solutions’ has no funding rounds, and remains bootstrapped to date. Despite facing some hardships related to funding, to date, we preferred to grow on our own and remained bootstrapped. Because we always think that whatever funds we have, we will utilize it the best. For Aarav Solutions, clients are the central focus.

Prateek: How can IoT be instrumental for industrial and commercial users?

Raj Darji: Digital Transformation has implemented and enriched the functioning of numerous sectors across. Among these, IoT Ecosystem is a world on its own in the digital transforming era. IoT smart devices which consist of embedded systems with processors and sensors, collate data from the environment and share it via IoT gateways to be stored in the cloud systems or to be analyzed locally. In certain devices, they do provide real-time insights as well, making the workplace and businesses productive sans disruption.

While analyzing the industrial and commercial markets, there is an increase in demand for IoT products as the products are simpler in terms of usage and handling and a multi-fold increase in productivity results. Some of the smart applications usually used in industry firms are Automated and remote equipment management and monitoring, Predictive maintenance, Inspection of Quality control, Supply chain optimization, Plant safety improvement, and various other sections.

These IoT products benefit the industrial hold at various levels, it provides an on track and real-time analysis on every piece of equipment, employers, and all the happenings around the industry at the user’s fingertips thereby paving a secured route to eradicating the problems. The usage of IoT devices acts as a tool to efficiently save energy used in the industry. IoT applications provide real-time data on the energy consumed and this real-time data can deliver interesting insights, such as off-hour consumption, recommendations for optimizing production schedules, and other opportunities for savings.

Adptx Utilities works on similar lines. To minimize the usage of natural resources, we provide a software cum hardware Smart Metering solution that collates information on the usage of water, gas, and electricity in various households and small industries. This metering solution provides real times insights to the user, thereby ensuring that usage is constantly kept under control.

On the other hand, commercial users are flooded with applications and smart gadgets that not just benefit the user but helps them to boom their businesses. Considering a booming commercial industry, namely hospitality, we can see numerous opportunities where IoT can bring in a drastic turnabout. Starting with Automated Check-in and billing procedures, Voice Controlled Customer Services and Smart locks and security surveillance systems, and many more.

Thereby, we can say that the implementation of IoT devices is a greater boon and provides a bigger push to industries and commercial users.

Prateek: How did the pandemic affect global operations? Has it opened doors to new opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises?

Raj Darji: Most of the businesses and companies struggled at the advent of lockdown, we as a company also had our share of highs and lows. In the beginning, when the pandemic was such an unexpected event, we did expect some impact on the business, but the extent of the aftermath is enormous. Global operations of all domains and sectors came to an absolute standstill. Exports and imports were drastically affected, productions of various sectors were frozen. SMEs have suffered from a shortage of workers and production inputs because of distortions that marred supply chains, which negatively affected their sales. Based on certain surveys it has been witnessed that the transformation of SMEs into the digital domain helped in peaking their sales during this desperate situation. Implementation of the digital ideologies in their production and development created a new dimension to boost and bring the firm up from extinction.

On the other hand, this pandemic created an open world to create something out of the box. The entire world went through and is still going through a digital transformational phase including the SMEs. Without much physical movement, the entire world had to depend on their devices and applications for their essentials. IT solutions providers are now increasingly looking at providing end-to-end digital transformation solutions. With the implementation of ‘Adptx Cloud’, customized build-to-suit solutions are now being adopted, taking care of our whole gamut of IT infrastructure right from smoother and faster subscriber management, simplified monetization to smarter billing solutions all in one comprehensive suite. Many applications such as Zoom, Zomato, and various others struck the right chord among the general people. Tele Consulting became the utmost important portfolio for the majority of the healthcare and education sector. Due to the rise in various applications, the investment grew multi-fold. Thereby, the SME’s doors to success were opened wide.

Being a bootstrapped company, we have always thrived to grow and did the same in the year 2020 as well. We have seen growth in 2020 with the launch of our own product range of next-generation technology like Adptx Cloud, Adptx Suite, Adptx Comm, and Adptx Utility. Earlier we were helping companies with only consulting services but now we have our own products to service them.

Prateek: What trends will dominate the IT sector in FY22?

Raj Darji: The impact that will be created in FY22 has already been initiated. New technological innovations, applications, and upgrading the existing tech a notch higher than the present innovation is the key goal of all the existing innovators. Some of the key trends would be:

  1. Development in the storage systems aka Cloud System – Secondary storage devices has been permanently replaced by the cloud. An integrated advancement that changed the revolution of storage in the most simple and secure way. It is also the go-to solution for brands who want to improve their work and make it more efficient in a digital space.
  2. Vision Intelligence and Technology – Vision intelligence is on the rise in the majority of industries. Cameras and equipment which are enabled with AI customized software show an accurate detail on what the camera witnesses. It is predominately used in construction sites and other public places for easy analysis of the entire atmosphere and to provide real – times insights.
  3. The emergence of smart cities, homes, and workspaces. – Digitalization of smart cities is the talk of the town. All the countries are keeping up an open head to acquire and implement the concept of smart cities across. Also, the current rise in smart homes and smart workplaces is also an observable trend in recent days. Smart Homes are equipped with all the integrated IoT products which not just makes the homes digitally smart functioning but also makes them safe and secure.
  4. Automation and Artificial Intelligence – Artificial intelligence embedded or automated smart machines and tools are on the rise, even in small-scale units and smaller implementations. Industrial automation can be provided by placing some sensors and receiving updates through the sensor reading into a portfolio as per users’ needs. The practice of automation evolved into, production with automatic testing and control systems, mechanical labor, operating equipment, and of course computers.
  5. Machine Learning – An AI-enabled software that accurately predicts the outcomes of the explicit program, will dominate the system. The machine learning applications such as CRM software, Virtual Assistants, HR Informative Systems are already prominent in this generation, and in the year 2022, there will be a new dimension that upgrades this software into something beyond the box of usual.

Prateek: What is the scope of digital transformation in the government sectors?

Raj Darji: As we see, in today’s world, everything revolves around technology. All the sectors have implemented respective technological equipment or gadgets for the efficient functioning of the organization. The initialization of this new technological era has been thrust into the minds of millions thru various initiatives such as digital payments, E-forms for various governmental entries, and many more.

Government is the only sector that is lacking behind in the digital transformation and we do see a predominant increase in the implementation of tech in this sector. For obtaining an efficient and faster pace of functioning, the digital transformation would pave a path for this rise. The digital transformation needs to take place from the grassroots level of the government. Considering every citizen, irrespective of the place they dwell in or their standard of living needs to get a taste of this transformation, as they are also considered to be an active participant in the governmental deeds.

Smart cities are another path that was unexplored. This idea not just powered the people towards digital transformation but also made governmental tasks easier. With all the houses or entities brought under a single even page of a server, the problems of the public can be figured out and rectified much effectively than usual. Billing and other important verifications can spark with the entity’s fingertips, not just benefitting the administrator’s power but also establishing clarity in the system. The scope of digital transformation is wide open, and it is just when and how the government opts to utilize it.

Prateek: How will the IT world transform with the growing demand for products involving AI, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning?

Raj Darji: With huge competition among the budding techpreneurs, there is a significant transformation building up among the applications and products involving AI, Machine Learning, and various new trends, that have huge upside potential and very few downside risks. These applications and products are the essential keys in transforming the IT World. These innovations guide to establishing the next generation equipped with solutions which were decided as an impossible task in the past.

This pandemic gave rise to many new inventions that changed the game completely. Executives and officials have become more trusting of what technology can do, and they are pushing ahead with digital transformation. They indicate they are planning for COVID-19 recovery to include investment in technologies such as AI, IoT, blockchain, and cloud. The next era will be onto the trail of complete automation, which would involve very little human interaction for daily mundane as well as technical tasks as well. As we see a change in the storage system from various secondary devices to Cloud, we would notice the same change in all the other important portfolios at a very faster rate in the upcoming days and this would completely transform the outlook of the IT World.

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