May 24, 2022
The mind-boggling startup explosion in India is only recent, and many of them are high-tech (and high-stake) startups dealing with AI, machine learning, and other deep-tech innovation. But when it comes to a more stable and bankable horizontal SaaS business, only a handful of Indian companies are running the show successfully.
Pickcel is one such Indian B2B brand that has established market dominance with its horizontal SaaS platform. The Bangalore-based company provides digital signage software for retail, healthcare, corporate, foodservice & hospitality, education, manufacturing, and smart cities. 40% of Pickcel clients are corporates like Embassy, Hindustan Unilever, and Etisalat. These corporate offices are using Pickcel’s software for multiple goals, from optimizing internal communication to training & employee onboarding.The second-largest sector in the company’s customer share is retail (30%), with top global names like Amazon, Asian Paints, and Decathlon. Pickcel believes it has huge opportunities to cater to the needs of QSRs and fine dining restaurant chains, especially with the growing demand for digital menu boards and touchless ordering systems. The digital signage market size combining the restaurant and the hospitality industries is significantly large. Currently, the brand serves some of the most renowned hospitality brands like JW Marriott, The Radisson, and The Leela Palaces.
About the product
The primary product of Pickcel is cloud-based digital signage software for managing signage screens and publishing content on those screens. At its core, digital signage software is a truly multipurpose product; it allows everything from driving commercial content on retail displays to broadcasting live flight details in airports.The brand has also included a long line of business applications within the digital signage framework to drive operational efficiency and auto-populate screens with real-time content. Some of the apps wrapped within their core product are queue management, visitor management, social wall, digital discount solution, digital product catalog, kiosk solutions, and transport Passenger Information System (PIS).Pickcel believes that it has introduced a premium product in the market, and the software features are where they beat many of their competitors. “As a B2B brand, you have to make your product strong; there is no alternative to this; there is no cheat code,” said Co-Founder Rajesh Bhattacharjee. “We focus on strengthening our software, and the rest of the efforts are always ongoing.”
It’s expansion in Global Market is phenomenal
Pickcel believes that it has introduced a premium product in the market, and the software features are where they beat many of their competitors. “As a B2B brand, you have to make your product strong; there is no alternative to this; there is no cheat code,” said Co-Founder Rajesh Bhattacharjee. “We focus on strengthening our software, and the rest of the efforts are always ongoing.”The digital signage software business is highly scalable. From education to health tech, there is hardly any industry left that does not utilize screens on a regular basis. According to the 2022 market research, digital signage will be a $35.4 Billion market by 2027. And the epicenter of this boom will be the North American region.Outside the Indian subcontinent, Pickcel has already witnessed prolific growth in the MENA (the Middle East and North Africa) region & Europe. The home-grown startup’s biggest client in the Middle East is the telecom giant Etisalat. Pickcel products are bundled with Etisalat services and are enjoyed by 12,000+ Etisalat SMB customers.”When we started our journey back in 2014, the digital signage software market in India was being dominated by foreign players. Somehow that gave us a determination to break the status quo. We thought, why not an Indian brand in the saddle?” said Basudev Saha, Co-founder of Pickcel.
After seven years, both Rajesh & Basudev find it safe to say that Pickcel has, to quite an extent, “turned the tables.”In Europe, the brand has visibility in the UK, Denmark, Ireland, Spain, Greece, France, and Germany. Pickcel has recently entered the North American market, and it is already seeing promising results with conversations budding with businesses from leading regions like Canada, Mexico, and the United States. Several regional partners in Australia, India, the Middle East & Africa. The channel partners bring a bounty of market knowledge and client base. The SaaS startup also has tied up with leading hardware vendors like LG, Samsung, Phillips, & Sharp Electronics for a hardware-agnostic product.Pickcel also upped its game in the area of marketing. The firm has exciting data to share: 96% of its business is generated through inbound sales, courtesy of a consistent digital marketing strategy. “It would have been impossible to penetrate the North American market without aggressive digital marketing,” both the founders agree.The company is becoming increasingly profitable and bankable; between 2019-2021, Pickcel witnessed a triple-digit climb in revenue, despite the pandemic roadblocks. India’s very own SaaS brand is now eyeing to establish dominion in the North American market, where the digital signage adoption rate is significantly higher than anywhere in the world. The company is looking for sustainable collaborations with channel partners in the region. Pickcel ‘s 2022 aim is to gain momentum against the old stagers in the race to become one of the top global names in digital signage software.
By Subhechcha Ganguly
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