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Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries — the show that explores GTM stories from tech’s most innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Saket Saurabh, co-founder and CEO of Nexla, a data operations platform that has raised over $15 million in funding. Here are the most interesting points from our conversation:

  • Saket’s Journey to Silicon Valley: Fueled by a passion for innovation and entrepreneurship, Saket moved to the US in 1999, drawn by the allure of Silicon Valley and its vibrant startup ecosystem.
  • Nexla’s Origin and Mission: Motivated by the challenges in data processing he observed in his previous ventures, Saket founded Nexla to empower anyone to work with data through automation in data engineering.
  • The Challenge of Messaging in the Data Space: Saket discusses the difficulty of cutting through the clutter of existing data technologies and terminologies to present Nexla’s innovative solution to potential customers.
  • Customer Traction and Success Stories: Nexla’s strategy of solving complex problems for large enterprises has attracted major clients like JPMorgan Chase, JNJ, DoorDash, and Instacart, showcasing the platform’s versatility and power.
  • The Role of Gartner and Analysts in Enterprise Buying: Saket emphasizes the importance of building relationships with analyst firms like Gartner to gain credibility and trust in the enterprise market.
  • Future Vision for Nexla: Looking ahead, Saket outlines Nexla’s ambition to simplify data work further, envisioning a future where integrating and manipulating data in applications is as straightforward as using APIs from providers like Stripe or Twilio.


The Power of a Clear Mission in Technology Development:

Nexla's focus on empowering anyone to work with data by automating data engineering tasks underscores the value of a mission-driven approach to technology development. This focus helps in addressing core problems and delivering solutions that resonate with a wide range of users and industries.

Leveraging Personal Experiences and Industry Gaps for Innovation:

Saket's transition from the mobile advertising space to founding Nexla was driven by his desire to work on more meaningful problems and his observation of the data processing challenges in his previous ventures. This move demonstrates the importance of leveraging personal experiences and industry observations to identify gaps and innovate solutions that address complex challenges.

Building Relationships with Industry Analysts to Gain Market Credibility:

Nexla's engagement with Gartner and other analyst firms illustrates the strategic value of building relationships with industry analysts to gain credibility and trust in the enterprise market. This approach can be crucial for startups looking to break into competitive and complex markets.

Prioritizing Product Development for Enterprise-Grade Solutions:

Nexla's decision to target large enterprises from the outset and build an enterprise-grade product showcases the importance of aiming for high standards in product development. This approach ensures that the product is capable of solving some of the most complex problems for large clients, setting a strong foundation for scalability and broader market adoption.

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