Volume 18, July 2009

 

imageS. Madhavan, CEO and Co-founder of Green Quotient Systems (GQuotient) in conversation with Sudha Kumar about the journey that culminated in the formation of GQuotient, the importance of Green ICT, and market receptivity towards a new idea, - in this issue of Focal Point.





GQuotient is a consulting-led services and product organization focused on the Green Information & Communication Technology (ICT). Could you please tell us how it all started?

treeGQuotient started owing to the passion of the founding team to address the environmental impact of the technology industry. Small as it may seem, at nearly 2% of the Green House Gas(GHG) emissions, Data Centers have the same impact as the Airlines industry on the environment. The Carbon footprint of ICT resources such as infrastructure, business processes and consumers is much larger than the 2% impact and could grow further in an increasingly digital society.

   
   
“Over time, enterprises need to evolve benchmarks for Green Maturity and this would require measurement, monitoring and management”.
 


Like-minded professionals encouraged us to convert this passion into the pursuit of a Green ICT agenda and our initial thoughts found the support of the CXO community. After six to nine months of discovery and market validation, the time was just right for a holistic, vendor-agnostic Green ICT player. Having been entrepreneurs before, it was natural for us to build a business case with a social cause and hence GQuotient was born.



Can you elaborate more on ‘Green ICT’ and its advantages? How can a company harness its benefits?

In our analysis, ICT plays three crucial roles in Green initiatives, extending the impact beyond the often seen and much talked about DC energy reduction.

First, ICT equipment and their power/space requirements can function as “Contributors” to Green House Gas reduction by
  • Use of energy efficient products
  • Optimization of cooling and space requirements in DCs
  • Optimization of ICT assets for lower power consumption
Second, popularize ICT-led green initiatives through business process automation as an “Enabler” of Green Supply Chain Management, such as:
  • eWaste Management
  • Green Buildings with energy management systems
  • Green Procurement Policies
  • Collaboration through Unified Communication applications
Third, Green Practices of ICT industry as “Influencers” will create heightened awareness among the individuals in an enterprise or outside of it, resulting in social transformation
  • Green Catalysts
  • Green Champions
  • Eco-sensitive enterprises


Tell us something more about your Products & Services.

GQuotient’s vision is to “enable sustainable monetization through Green ICT.” We firmly believe that Green and Cost Optimization are two sides of the same coin. Over time, enterprises need to evolve benchmarks for Green Maturity and this would require measurement, monitoring and management.



GQuotient seeks to be a holistic player with products and services that can make it a Contributor, Enabler and Influencer in the realm of Green ICT. As a startup, GQuotient will focus on creating intellectual capital around “Metrics and Management” for the enterprise ICT footprint, anchoring business application-led Greening. GQuotient is designing a SaaS platform for the delivery of its products, building a unique outcome-based pricing model for the Green ICT ecosystem. This is being developed with open source tools and will be offered to adapters on a subscription basis, with incumbent products/tools for inter-operability.

   
   
“GQuotient will use a client engagement model that blends a Consultative discovery process into a “Lean” delivery methodology, linking Green initiatives to economic benefits.”
 


GQuotient will use a client engagement model that blends a consultative discovery process with a “lean” delivery methodology, linking Green initiatives to economic benefits. The focus of every customer will be engagement driven by metrics and our dashboard would present the before and after picture. These are early days for the products and the engagement model and we will be able to share case studies in times to come.

What kind of framework do you propose to use to measure the outcomes of your programs? What have been the expected outcomes of such initiatives in terms of revenue growth and/or improved profitability for the enterprises?

As I had said, the company is in the formative years and customer adoption of the products is still at an early stage.

GQuotient is devising a metric “GQ” that is a function of: Application footprint, ICT Asset utilization, Operating Costs, Carbon Reductions and RoEi (Return on Eco initiatives). We are in the process of creating a marketplace for monetizing Green Initiatives, through an eco-system approach.

Enterprises that are an integral part of the GQuotient community would be able to measure, monitor and monetize their green initiatives, on a sustainable basis. We would leverage technologies such as Cloud Computing, Virtualization, Video Collaboration etc., extensively, for the benefit of emerging companies.

   
   
“GQuotient is devising a metric “GQ” that is a function of: Application footprint, ICT Asset utilization, Operating Costs, Carbon Reductions and RoEi (Return on Eco initiatives).”
 


How receptive are organizations to this idea? What have been your initial market experiences?

We have had tremendous interest generated in the initial meetings with the CXO community. The expectations are around metrics, program management and ROI. Our pitch that we will help enterprises to “do more with the same and more with less,” is nonthreatening as well as pragmatic as voiced by the customers. We have to simply improve the “Signal to Noise” ratio in the market to be credible.

 

 


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