Are there any lessons learned in terms of the timing, readiness, integration and the price you paid?


Earlier, when the iPhone was launched, people were fine with the fact that charts didn’t work on it, but when the iPad was launched in 2010, and it too did not support Flash, our customers started complaining that your charts are not working. So, in 2010 we went to a competitor and said that we want to do an exclusive deal with you, and you will not give it to any other Flash charting players. We offered them a good amount of money and told them that we would use their product as part of our product, wherein wherever Flash won’t work, JavaScript will work. We will also give them the branding that when the JavaScript version is being used, we will mention that XYZ powers it. We created a huge competitor. Ideally, we should have acquired it back then. At that time, I didn’t have the knowledge that we can acquire too. They were a small company back then, and we should have acquired then; we didn’t realize that it would create trouble later.

On the road map side of a sale, you can create a narrative regarding the long-term direction. But it was the process side where we got grilled a lot, especially later. What is your release cycle? How do you get your customers’ feedback? How are sales and support communications conducted? How do you prioritize? What are the different prioritization frameworks used? We were grilled a lot on all these parameters in two or three deals.


I have no shame in admitting that as entrepreneurs, founders, you have a role to play to lead the company to a certain level of maturity and post that it needs to get into new hands because it has grown, it is like how you are a parent, you need to let the child learn on its own and grow and mature. It’s the same thing with the company—it reaches a certain stage in life where, for it to grow, you can be the bottleneck. And I somehow recognized that and I have set in motion a really, really good plan. It is now a process of repeatability and someone can take over and make it much, much larger.