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We see public listing as the next logical step in our growth as an organization: CEO of Aeries

In an email conversation with AlphaStreet, Aeries Technology’s founder and chief executive officer Sudhir Panikassery spoke about the company and its operations

Aeries Technology is a global services company providing technology, business process management and transformation services to some of the leading global organizations. The company, which was founded in 2012, currently has over 1,600 professionals on staff.

Earlier this year, Aark Singapore Pte Ltd. and its subsidiary Aeries Technology entered into a definitive agreement with Worldwide Webb Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ: WWAC), under which Aeries Technology would become a publicly listed company. In an interview with AlphaStreet, Sudhir Panikassery, the company’s founder and chief executive officer, gave insights into the various aspects of the business.

Can you provide an overview of Aeries Technology and its operations?

Aeries Technology is a global professional services and consulting partner for organizations in transformation mode and their stakeholders – including Private Equity sponsors and their portfolio companies. With a deep pool of over 1,600 global professionals specializing in technology services, business process management (BPM), and AI-driven digital transformation, we utilize engagement models designed to provide the right mix of deep vertical specialty, functional expertise, and the right systems, software, and solutions needed to scale, optimize and transform our client’s business operations.

The Aeries Way is purpose-built and future-ready, and the professionals we hire for our clients are deeply integrated and treated as if they are part of the client team. These teams are built to be agile and help transform the cost structure of portfolio companies – leading to a 65% annualized customer savings, on average. Founded in 2012, we’ve been cash flow positive since 2013 and our business model has led to a customer lifetime value (LTV) of $2.3M in 2022, up from $1.7M in 2021.

How significant is the public listing, and where do you see Aeries Technology five years from now?

At the current state of our business evolution, the benefits of accessing the public markets are significant. Going public, and partnering with Daniel Webb and his team at Worldwide Webb Acquisition Corp., will enable Aeries to accelerate our innovation capabilities for our clients and capitalize on the momentum we’ve built. Unlike many of the companies that have experienced difficulty taking the SPAC route for a listing, Aeries has the established revenue, momentum, profitability, and growth needed to succeed as a public company. We believe our ability to be disruptive in our space will lead to 54% revenue growth and a 21% EBITDA margin for CY23E.

In the next five years, I hope to see Aeries continue to disrupt our industry and continue our momentum within the public markets. We see a public listing as the next logical step in our growth as an organization and that it will help us to achieve our goal of becoming a significant player in the outsourcing industry over the next five to ten years disrupting the established paths to outsourcing. The additional capital, resources, and opportunities made possible by the public markets should help to fuel our organic growth and expansion, as well as enable acquisitions and business collaborations in an accelerated manner.

Can you talk about your expansion plans; are there any M&A deals in the cards currently?

While I can’t share any specifics with respect to our strategic plans – M&A or otherwise – I can say that Aeries will consider and vet all avenues toward expansion and growth in the coming years. Towards this end we are actively evaluating acquisition opportunities that fit into our growth strategy augmenting our service offerings, technological capabilities, customer base, and leadership and talent pools. We anticipate that every step we plan and execute will drive value and returns for our shareholders.

What are the emerging trends in the business services market, and what are your expectations for the company?

Along with digital transformation, the trends we’re seeing within the industry are the rise and importance of automation, the hybrid work environment, importance of cybersecurity, need for cost-effective tech skills from top to bottom within an organization, acceleration in the adoption of AI (including generative AI) based tools and solutions and the continued emphasis on profit margins and revenue growth.

Aeries anticipated these trends within the market and we have been preparing our local and global teams, as well as our customers, for each of the eventualities. This is evident by the recent launch of our cyber security managed services offering in April. Given the preparation we’ve undertaken and the team we’ve put in place, I expect Aeries to continue to be a disruptive force within the industry and lead the evolution of the business services market. Our engagement model puts us in a unique position to capture and ride the emerging trends in the industry. 

How do you look at the ongoing economic uncertainty, in terms of its potential effect on the business?

We are aware that we will be going public at an uncertain and volatile time for the market overall due to geopolitical events and post-pandemic supply chain disruption. We, of course, keep a close watch over the market conditions and these market conditions were considered when we made the decision to enter into the merger with Worldwide Webb. We feel that, for a sound fundamental business like ours, there are additional opportunities to help organizations become future-ready by entering the market at this time.

Even during these times, we were able to drive $50MM in revenue for CY22 and are projecting a 60% revenue CAGR for CY22E – CY24E. While there could be delayed decision-making within organizations, the need for sustained cost savings and operational efficiencies with a collaborative partnership will drive businesses to consider our capabilities and engagement model to help drive their organizations’ growth in a sustained manner. We also provide the talent and expertise to assist with a general technological upgrade of an organization to help gear itself up for effectively meeting the challenges of short business cycles and competition within their industry.

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