Routing call centres on mobiles through the Tentacle app

Routing call centres on mobiles through the Tentacle app

Startup Showcase

Routing call centres on mobiles through the Tentacle app

If you used to think that Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) companies, known as call centres in popular culture, need premises and capital expenditure, you seriously need to catch up with time.

It’s not a miracle that’s going to happen in the near future, with lakhs of scientists toiling on building a back-end technology for it. You must have heard of a startup named Tentacle. The startup, co-founded by Sumontro Roy, COO, and Rahul Arora, CEO, in 2014, is a cell phone-based call centre.

The startup uses cloud computing to provide call centre solutions. “We provide Software as a Service (SaaS). We provide a cloud software and a mobile app. Our core target is the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) of the country to begin with, and then we start moving outwards in the co-centric circles starting from Asia-Pacific and then Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA),” says Sumontro Roy.

The target audience of the company, as per its co-founders, is any firm that makes an outbound call with a business purpose. “So it is not a Business to Customer (B2C) app, as in, you and me won’t need that application while making regular calls,” says Roy.

In the BPO industry, Banking, Financial Services and Insurance (BFSI), telcos, wellness, spa, education, real estate, and NGOs are very popular verticals.

`“For us, BFSI and telcos are the lead verticles. We also realised that when we started with limited resources, these verticals can give us the access to a large number of users,” adds Roy.

Highlighting the importance of innovation by the company, Roy says, “If you were to ask me what differentiates us from our competitors, I would say that it is our innovation and creating disruption. When you think of a call centre, you think of a large station with many work stations, many layers of employees, team leaders, with elaborate infrastructure. So, essentially you think that call centres need heavy capex. But we have, kind of, blown all that away. With us, all you need is a cellphone to operate your own call centre.”

Talking of the competition — large, establisted, traditional BPO players — Roy states, “One-third of the market is serviced by this type of the players. The remaining two-thirds of the market is characterised by the SME market. Our focus is that two-third of the market. Given that we charge on Rs 1,000 per month per user, SMEs also find it feasible.”

But the SME market in the country is highly scattered and unorganised market in India. So how does Tentacle deal with it? “When you are innovating, you need to educate your client. So barrier to adoption is education. But we do have a first-mover advantage there,” adds Roy.

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