6 Questions for Amrit Kirpalani
The analytics company CEO talks about his Indian connection.
Chairman and CEO, Denuo Source LLC
Dallas-based Denuo Source (denuo means “anew” in Latin) is a privately held, market-research firm founded in 2006. Kirpalani, born 32 years ago in Suriname in South America to parents from Chennai, India, previously worked as a management consultant with McKinsey & Co. and as a manager at Accenture.
1. What exactly does Denuo Source do?
We’re an analytics company that helps turn data into “actionable insights” for our 15 to 18 clients, some of them from Dallas. With retailers, for example, we optimize their marketing programs for products, mainly. For insurance-company clients, we help minimize fraud and abuse. For consumer-goods companies, we advise them where they should be selling their products, among other things.
2. How do you do it all?
We take the clients’ own data and analyze it and find keys in the data. We’re looking for patterns—when something sticks out, for example, when something doesn’t seem right. Do they have a loyalty program, say? Let’s find more of those programs to target and sell. We consider ourselves researchers.
3. Can you recall a concrete success?
We have one client—a major retailer with 950 stores in the U.S. We helped them with a direct-mail, direct-marketing campaign. We identified the customers they should be making their offers to.
4. How extensive are your operations, and what’s your revenue like?
We have three U.S. offices—in Dallas, Chicago, and Minnesota—and two in India, in [the southern city called] Hyderabad. We don’t talk about our number of employees or our revenue, for competitive reasons. But I can tell you that more than 80 percent of our employees are in India, and that in 2008-2009 we grew 300 percent. In 2010 we’ll grow again two to three times.
5. What’s the advantage of doing this work overseas?
There’s a very significant wage difference. There’s also a benefit to our clients in that we operate on a 24-hour clock. We can consult with our clients in Chicago, say, and then toward the end of the workday give instructions to our team in India, where the workday is just starting. That way we’re working “all night” for our clients, and can have answers for them by the time they open in Chicago again the next morning.
6. Aren’t you taking jobs away from Americans?
No, we’re actually creating jobs in the U.S. We have hired very aggressively here in the past, and we continue to do so. We’re also not replacing U.S. jobs; rather, we work as “extensions” of our clients, providing them with very specialized, technical expertise at highly competitive rates. We can save them from 30 percent to 50 percent on their labor costs, and our Indian workers are all college graduates, many engineers. Most have masters degrees; some have MBAs; others are Ph.Ds in math or statistics.