Hari Krishnan Puravankara is the Founder & CEO of BlackPepper Technologies – a trusted design partner for a dozen Tier-1 semiconductor companies that continues to aggressively expand its global footprint, leveraging their two core assets – LTE and EYWA. Hari’s responsibilities start with building a robust vision and assembling the right team to own his vision. As a dynamic entrepreneur, he believes in collective entrepreneurship, and his ability to keep his team highly motivated drives him closer to his vision. He calls himself ‘An Avid Dreamer’ with a firm footing to realize the dream in the best possible way.
Building Black Pepper
Hari has worked with large corporations like Wipro, Magma Design Automation and the roles that he played enriched him with much-needed experience. He realized that the real challenge was to build a company that will accelerate the ideation to product realization journey in niche technology segments such as semiconductor chip design and allied products. He wanted to create an innovation marketplace that gives freedom to anyone to think freely and then transform the ideas into reality.
BlackPepper truly believes in a flat organization, in the philosophy of collective entrepreneurship and encourages an environment where every single ‘Pepperite’ is encouraged to think freely, innovate tirelessly, question fearlessly and be deeply involved in every facet of the BlackPepper story.
Hari’s vision is to build a company that would become India’s top-most end-to-end hardware design solutions provider building high-value engineering capabilities that are a cut above the capabilities of the global design service provider space. Today, BlackPepper is a trusted design partner for the top 15 global semiconductor companies. The company continues to aggressively expand its global footprint, leveraging two core assets – Lean Tall Engineering (LTE) and EYWA. LTE or Lean Tall Engineering is a focused return to first principle engineering tenets of yesteryears where a single engineer was massively multi-skilled rather than skills and capabilities being sliced and diced across a slew of less experienced engineers. EYWA is Black Pepper’s home grown, a unique technology framework that allows optimization of human and computing resources enabling complex designs to converge to closure predictably.
One of the core purposes of the company is to create an enduring impact on society by building an innovative hardware-specific organization in emerging technology sectors like the Internet of Things. BlackPepper aims to democratize innovation by transforming ideas into tangible products and inculcate the spirit of innovation among all.
A Company with Family Values
BlackPepper is built on family values rather than conventional corporate priorities. It is a forward-looking organization with an inclination towards employee engagement around credibility, pride, fairness, learning, recognition, and camaraderie. To help employees identify with the company’s values and goals, Black Pepper developed an efficient employee engagement plan based on the extensively researched Great Place to Work (GPTW) framework.
Hari says, “To us, titles and designations are irrelevant extensions. We are keen on creating and nurturing a culture of professional and personal excellence that goes far beyond the regular call of duty. We are ever ready to lend a helping hand, whether it is for a social cause or for a colleague who is tackling a challenge at work.”
A Role Model
Hari believes that a leader should embrace everyone equally, but allow them to explore their individual capacities by giving them freedom and flexibility. Hari has always leaned on books to learn, and of course, advisors from various backgrounds also helped him maneuver the course of his company during crisis situations or road blocks. The three books that had a significant impact on his thinking were, ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad,’ ‘How to get Rich’ and ‘The Alchemist’. Through these books he learned the lessons of money and entrepreneurship, to build the framework for a great company, and to make things happen if you believe it. Some of the biggest lessons that he has learned have been related to the mechanisms of raising capital for the company. It was easy for him to liquidate equity, but he knew the value would be far more sustainable a few years later.
An Ideal Decision Maker with Future Preparations
Everyone has capabilities that can make an impact in the business and it’s important for a leader to tap that by nurturing an ideal environment. Hari is a simple man and believes in simple principles. He always connects all the dots to visualize the final picture, so that it enables him to take the right decision. He says, “My growth comes from enabling my team, so I aspire to bring in the right team with the values that are aligned and core to BlackPepper and let them loose to grow the company to the next level.”
BlackPepper is enabling companies to walk in with an idea, and they can do the end to end system design realization. They have made significant investments in enabling comprehensive system design capabilities and continue to prepare the company for future requirements. Besides having the desired passion, commitment and a never-say-die attitude, what’s more, important to Hari is to enable everyone who fundamentally believes in ‘Our Story’ to be successful.