Digitalisation not only gave a makeover to businesses and governments but also to the habits of a common man. From ordering food and groceries online to buying and selling stuff on e-commerce platforms, our lifestyle has evolved dramatically due to adoption of new-gen technologies. To share insights on the B2B e-commerce market dynamics and the growth story of Peer Connexions, Jaishankar Krishnan, Co-Founder at Peer Connexions spoke with CRN India in an exclusive interview.
Can you tell us more about the background and inspiration behind the founding of Peer Connexions and the team behind it?
Peer Connexions was founded in 2019. It is registered in Singapore and has operations in the Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and India. The vision behind the company is to enable the digital transformation of the distribution channels ecosystem through a comprehensive platform for brand owners, distributors, and resellers. The company was founded by three IT industry veterans – Shailendra Gupta, Ramesh Nair, and Jaishankar Krishnan. They have held various leadership positions in the IT distribution industry globally and domestically for a very long time. We are now keen to address the problems faced in legacy distribution models and transform the industry using our technology.
In what ways do you think Peer Connexions fills a gap in the B2B e-commerce market in India? What unique solutions does it offer to its customers?
The significant problem we have with current brand owners’ go-to-market channel models, in the IT industry and in many others, is that they continue to follow archaic, costly and inefficient, multi-tier mode, still relying on direct touch with key players. IT vendors provide technology for transforming various industries; ironically though, technology is little used in getting their own products to market. In this age of easy connectivity with the wide acceptance of real-time sharing, transparency, and collaboration culture, rules for viability and success are being rewritten in many industries. Those who do not adopt may find survival at risk in the coming years.
Peer Connexions is a shared digital ecosystem that provides resellers with comprehensive information from multiple brands and distributors on a single screen. Our platform has a clear line of sight up/downstream with rightful data ownership for all tiers, real-time analytics, etc. This will address legacy model problems and will force an optimised GTM model to remove redundancies and reduce costs and inefficiencies.
Can you highlight some of the key benefits that Peer Connexions offers its consumers, particularly in terms of ease of use and cost savings?
Peer Connexions offers several key benefits to its users. It provides access to a vast channel network, allowing businesses to expand their customer base and reach a broader audience. The platform offers automation capabilities, which help streamline processes and reduce manual effort. Peer Connexions also enable businesses to grow revenue and profits by providing a platform for showcasing products or services, connecting with customers, and facilitating transactions. This can lead to increased sales and improved profitability.
In terms of ease of use, our platform prioritises user-friendly interfaces and intuitive design, making it easy for consumers to navigate and utilise the platform. This can include features like simple registration processes, clear communication channels, and many promotions and rewards programs. We have recently launched our mobile app to provide a better mobile-friendly experience to our users.
What were some of the key highlights for Peer Connexions in the past two years? How did the company adapt to the challenges posed by the pandemic?
We launched our platform in the year 2020 after a year and a half of development. We got quick adoption with some brands in the Southeast Asian region. The first country we launched was the Philippines and now we are present in six countries with our recent launch in Australia. After testing our solution in different markets, we launched our platform in India in May last year as it is one of the biggest and most complex markets. In this short period of time, we have six distributors on our platform including some very well-known names like Techdata and Galtech. Some prominent brands whose products are available on the platform include Dell, Toshiba, Infocus, etc.
Can you share with us your future plans for the Indian market and Peer Connexions’ Go-To-Market strategy? Are there any specific goals or milestones you hope to achieve in the coming years?
India is a very complex market, and it has tremendous potential. We have currently about six sellers and distributors offering their products on the platform and we are in discussion with a few more. And we are quite hopeful we will expand that in the near future. But there is still a lot of scope for us to present our solution and our value proposition to a lot more, distributors and brands in the country.
The size and breadth of the Indian market mean that the traditional way of distribution through direct touch is very inefficient as well as expensive. This leads to multiple layers of distribution with National, Regional, and city distributors accessing the final tier channels and retailers.
However, each of these distribution layers adds cost to the supply chain and thereby increases the cost of the product or service to the end consumer.
This makes India an ideal market for the digital transformation of distribution channels where a platform such as Peer Connexions can help Brands and Distributors reach a large base of reseller partners across the length and breadth of the country in a very efficient and cost-effective manner.
Given our recent entry into the Indian market and the positive response we have received so far, we believe that there is tremendous scope for us to grow our business in India. With this objective, we will be focusing on communicating our value proposition to a maximum number of brands/distributors and reseller partners across various industries and encourage them to adopt the Peer Connexions platform as one of their go-to-market channels.
Simultaneously, we will be focused on helping our participating partners transform at least 25 percent of their business on the platform so that they can realise the benefits of this digital transformation in their businesses.