In Conversation with Anuj Kumar – A Data Enthusiast and Entrepreneur with the Vision to Democratize Analytics

Anuj Kumar | Insights Success

He has been active in the data analytics space for over a decade now, but his hunger to contribute is as unstoppable as ever – meet Anuj Kumar, the Co-founder and Chief Architect of FORMCEPT – an innovative data analytics company. Together with his co-founder Suresh Srinivasan, Anuj has built a first-of-its-kind Augmented Data Management Platform ‘MECBot’. Here, Anuj tells us his inspiring story – his love for data, his drive for innovation, his vision to democratize analytics and his personal journey through the roller-coaster ride of entrepreneurship.
A Bend in the Road: Taking the Plunge into Entrepreneurship

Anuj’s adventure in data analytics kickstarted in Bangalore back in 2007 when he joined Oracle R&D as a developer. Early in his career, he got the opportunity to get involved in the end-to-end process of product building and implementation. “This gave me a good understanding of designing and implementing a large scale enterprise application,” says Anuj.
Later, he moved to the Data Quality team of Oracle Data Integration product where he crossed paths with Suresh Srinivasan, who was then leading the Data Integration team at Oracle. Soon, the innovator in Anuj began to ask questions: Why was he solving small-scale problems that had only suboptimal impact on enterprises? He then quit his job to understand the problem at the grass-root level. “It struck me that the need of the hour is to come up with a product that can help not only large corporates but also SMEs. It became my vision to democratize performance-oriented analytics.
Inception of FORMCEPT: The Labour of Love
Anuj co-founded FORMCEPT with Suresh with the objective of empowering 21st-century leaders to take mission-critical decisions. So, how did they get cracking at it? “Our flagship product is MECBot – an Augmented Data Management Platform for Real-Time Analytics. It is an open cognitive platform that structures unstructured data and marries it with structured data. This unified data is stored as an enterprise graph and is transformed into a flattened view for downstream analytics. Finally, our powerful AI algorithms and pre-built ML/DL/NLP models such as Customer Segmentation, Loyalty, etc. deliver real-time actionable insights to our customers.”
Anuj points out how finding a match in Suresh was crucial for FORMCEPT to happen. But even so, did entrepreneurship come easy? “No,” Anuj says pensively, “Not really. The first few years were really challenging – I had worked for only 4 years and had minimal savings.”
From Shared Vision to Joint Leadership
Anuj observes that their association with NASSCOM, IIM Ahmedabad and IIM Bangalore have been pivotal. The co-founders attended various events to create visibility for FORMCEPT. Anuj himself has spoken at TEDx, IN/Clojure Conference and multiple ACM conferences.
Recently, the company was awarded as the “Best AI Company of the Year-2019” at the Global AI Awards organized by AICRAFORMCEPT was also listed as one of the top 10 Indian AI Startups to watch out for in 2018.
Perspectives on Data Analytics Industry
When asked about the pain-points of the industry, Anuj doesn’t skip a beat. “Currently, the industry takes a Data First approach with a very high dependence on the Traditional Data Team. This process requires translating the business-first problem to a data-first problem that the Data Team can understand, who then considers it a technology-first problem. This makes costs spin out of control, even as significant delays creep in.
Anuj shares that in the future; enterprises will move away from dealing with day-to-day technology challenges on-premise and adopt cloud-based analytics services to run them on demand as and when required with pay-as-you-go model.
Staying Rooted: The Pillars of Strength
As the conversation rolls, one question looms – what keeps Anuj motivated? Anuj is unabashedly grateful to his mentors. “During my primary days, I was taught by Ma’am Daya Joshi – I attribute to her my ability to learn. Among my college instructors, Prof. B.D. Chaudhary is my mentor till date. I did my thesis under him and ideas from that thesis are still ingrained within MECBot. Last but not the least, Suresh, my co-founder, is my everyday dose of inspiration. ”
What about relationships and hobbies? “My family and friends empower me with the strength to wake up every day and take up my next challenge. Also, learning keeps me motivated,” he says. “In 2018, I authored a book on Microservices with Clojure. I am keen to contribute more prolifically in this space.”
Future with FORMCEPT
Anuj’s company now seeks to amplify customer traction and are simultaneously focusing on product innovation to stay ahead of the curve. “In the next three years, we see ourselves as a market leader in the Augmented Data Management domain in Indian and U.S. markets,” he says.
Words of Wisdom
If budding entrepreneurs were to take a leaf out of Anuj’s life, what would it be? “Keep learning,” Anuj says, “Building enterprise grade product from India is a challenge and also an opportunity. It is an opportunity because you can harden the product with Indian customers and then go global. It is challenging because getting the right team is difficult. Don’t forget to stay fit. It is a marathon.”
Source :-The 30 Young and Dynamic Entrepreneurs to Watch in 2019

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