A Brampton-based entrepreneur’s tech idea is gathering significant interest in North America and abroad.
It was in December 2018 when Vijay Ranganathapura first approached the Brampton Entrepreneur Centre (BEC) for support with his new business venture, IQRoots Inc. He needed guidance in expanding his Brampton-based business that he registered in April 2018.
The electronics and communications engineer with 17 years of international experience in companies such as Siemens, RBC, Deloitte and Tata needed to leverage BEC’s network to gain funding, establish his business model and create a client base in Canada.
IQRoots’ flagship product is Veue, a voice-enabled mobile application or plug-in that allows people to share their phone screens with one another. This concept may appear basic, but Veue’s feature-rich program can add an exciting support dimension to several digital solutions.
Ranganathapura, who has an MBA from Schulich School of Business, York University, explains: “It began when a colleague and I imagined an app that would allow a mother to call her son half way across the world and share her mobile screen with him to receive step-by-step guidance on how to change her ring-tone or a phone setting.
“Taking that idea a step further, we began developing screen-sharing plug-ins that could be potentially used by online service providers like Amazon. Our product could enable support centre staff to connect securely with customers who may need personal assistance, say, with buying something online. This concept became the rationale for Veue’s initial line of products.”
Developed in Bengaluru, headquartered in Brampton
Ranganathapura decided to develop his business concept in his home-city of Bengaluru, India’s ‘Silicon Valley’.
“Compared to the West, the costs of starting a business in India are much lower. Tech talent, too, is easier and less expensive to find. Our familiarity with Bengaluru, where several global and national tech giants are located, also gave IQRoots the development ecosystem it needed to get going.”
However, Ranganathapura, a Canadian resident, wants IQRoots to be headquartered in Canada, which would allow his company easier access to the North American market. “Having lived in Brampton since 2013, the natural thing to do was to approach BEC for support. They connected me with other key organizations that help young companies in the GTA area such as MaRS Discovery District, the RIC Centre, and the Brampton Angel Network. I am using these connections to accelerate my business!”
The road ahead looks promising. IQRoots has already marketed its solutions to some of India’s leading businesses such as Yamaha, Cipla and iScholar. “IQroots has seen substantial client interest. I now have 10 tech engineers in Bengaluru who are working to enhance our solutions through the innovative use of artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities for better customer experience and service.”
The company is now collaborating with some of the world’s leading artificial intelligence research centres such as the Montreal-based MILA, and the WaterLoo AI Research Centre. Recently, IQRoots launched in the US too and is in conversation with several businesses and venture capitalists.
Ranganathapura is looking forward to being involved with the Ryerson-led pilot incubator space when it opens in downtown Brampton in 2019. “The incubator will help me accelerate towards my goals. I plan to scale up IQRoots in the near term, and have a strong team working with me in Brampton by the end of the year.”