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Last Updated : Aug 22, 2016 10:15 PM IST | Source: CNBC-TV18

Bootstrapped startup? This co will give you free IT tools

If you decided to start a company of your own, a significant part of your investment would be directed towards getting the tech interface up and running.


If you decided to start a company of your own, a significant part of your investment would be directed towards getting the tech interface up and running.


But that could change thanks to Chennai-based technology company Zoho Corp, which is developing free IT tools for bootstrapped start-ups, reports CNBC-TV18's Jude Sannith.


From analytical tools and network monitors, to website infrastructure - it tools end up being among the first investments a start-up makes and they come at quite a price. But software licensing major, Zoho Corporation wants to change that. Its product division, Manage Engine, is busy creating such tools and releasing them to startups for free.

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Here's why.


"At some point, we realize we don't need to charge for a product," says Sridhar Iyengar, Vice President, Manage Engine. "It would probably be more useful for us to get some marketing visibility if we were to offer it for free, and that also lends us an edge in terms of competitiveness."


These free tools from Manage Engine's stables have helped start-ups save an estimated Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh per company, per month. This money saved now helps bootstrapped companies invest in areas like marketing or HR.


In the last decade, Manage Engine has built nearly a hundred IT tools, 50 of which are free, full-versions, clocking over 2000 downloads everyday.


The company is now planning to remove price tags off some of its other commercial offerings as well.  It hopes the move will help it build a solid customer base.


"This would be an ideal starting point for them, to get started. And when they come to a certain size, where they say 'ok we've got the size to manage it professionally, we can invest in tools'. At that point they would upgrade to a paid edition," says Iyengar.


So, while the company is doling out the freebies for now, it is hoping to bank on its already-successful commercial products to sustain margins.



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First Published on Aug 22, 2016 10:10 pm
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