Friday, September 19, 2008

Interview with entrepreneur - Vish Vishwanathan - Znode

What is Znode?

is a Flexible Storefront Platform – Revolutionary technology that allows online retailers to launch world-class online storefronts and increase profitability within weeks instead of months. Extensive research and analysis shows that no other competing platform has the Ultimate Flexibility that Znode Storefront includes in its framework, which allows it to be custom-tailored to virtually any business requirement. Moreover, Znode is extremely user-friendly, can handle millions of SKUs and can be easily integrated with virtually any back-office system or third party application. Znode allows retailers to rapidly market their products, manage inventory and connect seamlessly with trading partners.

What problem does it solve?

Znode's primary goal is to address the biggest challenge in e-commerce today which is the lack of flexibility in commercially available solutions. We are continuously working to make the Znode Storefront platform provide the ultimate flexibility to enable our customers to create rich, custom-tailored solutions for virtually any real-world requirement. Our extensive expertise with building user friendly web applications and adherence to a standards based development approach has clearly differentiated us from other competitors in the market.

Where is the company at its maturity?

Our licensed product – Znode Storefront was launched in the first quarter of 2007 after 30,000 man-hours of development over a period of 3 years. Since its launch, several major retail brands such as LoJack have successfully implemented world-class solutions using the Znode platform. The platform is currently in version 5.1 and is very mature. We have also established streamlined development and support processes in place to provide world-class support to our customer base. Znode is currently in the process of enhancing its enterprise service offerings such as the “Storefront-On-Demand” product which would allow rapid implementation of complex enterprise storefronts through a middle-ware service model.

Why did you start Znode?

We were doing a number of e-commerce projects for different clients – we realized that all of these projects had a “common thread” – we felt that it could benefit us if we were to create a solid e-commerce base framework that we could base all our projects on. When we started building this framework, we were careful enough to ensure that it is based on industry standard best practices. Once the framework was built, it was obvious to us that it would be beneficial to license it to other developers and agencies as well.

Tell us a little bit about your background

Currently the CEO of Znode – I have been with Znode since its inception. I have consulted as an architect for several companies over the last 15 years including BMW Financial Services, Qwest Communications, Wendy’s International, Borden Foods and Information Control Corporation. I have a bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering and have a number of patents and publications in the electronic firmware area.

About yourself

I have 2 cats that keep me busy, I like riding my bike, love the TV series : Entourage, not much of a writer, favorite travel destination:Santa Monica, I am a big movie buff, musicals tickle my fancy, Favorite drink: Chai Tea Latte with Soy and a shot of Espresso (only at Starbucks!)

What are your aspirations for Znode?

Our goal for Znode is to achieve global leadership status in the e-commerce domain. There are several players In this domain but we have been able to cut through the competition easily because of our unique product strategy. We strongly believe that we can achieve our leadership goal in the next few years based on our roadmap and current momentum.

What would you like to tell our readers?

First of all, we would like to thank everyone in Columbus who have been instrumental in Znode’s success. We have received invaluable help and support from industry leaders in this region that has helped shape our company to what we are today. We are proud to be located here in Central Ohio!

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