Arun Balasubramaniam, country manager, sales, ShoreTel India, has over 16 years of experience in channel sales, account management, cloud and business development. Prior to joining ShoreTel, he was national channel leader for the IBM Collaboration business in India and South Asia. He was also associated with the IBM Smartcloud business as sales leader for over two years, handling its cloud business for the Indian and South Asian markets.
Balasubramaniam describes his stint as sales lead at IBM as his most memorable assignment so far. He says, “It was a very challenging role as this was a greenfield area for IBM as well. Cloud was a new concept then, partners were not very receptive, customers had issues moving to the cloud because of security concerns and dependency on the vendor. We successfully overcame many such challenges over a period of time.” He has also held various positions at Microsoft, ranging from licensing to strategic management.
At ShoreTel, he is responsible for building relationships and driving sales for the company in the Indian market. His key focus areas include customer acquisition and retention, partner recruitment and management, and overall business growth. ShoreTel has acquired over 130 customers in India in the past two and a half years and, as per Balasubramaniam, it plans to acquire more local customers in the next 12-18 months in order to grow organically.
Balasubramaniam sees the increasing digitisation and growing adoption of cloud services as the key emerging trends in the telecom industry. On digitisation, he says, “While a lot of customers have been moving from traditional analog devices to IP technology, this pace has increased exponentially of late. Many customers are willing to adapt to IP technology and invest in it. We see great potential in this market.” He also feels that there will be intense competition in the telecom industry in the near future, leading to price wars amongst the players.
Balasubramaniam considers his positive approach towards every situation as his biggest strength. Talking about his management style, he says he is a people’s person, who is always open to listening to others’ views. He also believes in a collaborative work culture.
Balasubramaniam has an MBA in marketing management and finance. He is a motorcycling enthusiast and a movie buff. His wife is a banker, who is also an avid traveller like him.