Everybody, including his family, thought that he is going mad when one day he woke up and decided to quit his job. This is the story of a Christian Pakistani man, Mr. Rodrigues who decided to quit working for other people and retire to his basement to develop a computer product which was, later on, declared a bets seller.
People thought I was going mad, he said and thought he was having a ‘hippy’ moment, but he was bothered by this.
So in 2001, he took his dreams with him to the basement of his house in Mississauga, Canada and started to make something out of them.
He said, “My goal was that I wanted to see what I could produce if I did something I really liked.” He also mentioned that he had no ideas at that time but wanted to give this a shot.
After working endless hours for a month, he came up with his first software system which enables people to control their mobile phones from their laptop.
His software didn’t pick heat very fast and fitting on his company name’s ‘Soti’, its sales grew very slowly. After 12 months of releasing the software, he was contacted by one of the UK’s largest supermarket group. They didn’t to sell the software, they wanted to incorporate it in its operations, so the staff could communicate with each other in a better way.
Today’s Billionaire and founder of Soti said,‘ I was still in my basement when they called me to place an order,’
“I don’t think they realized that they were talking to just one guy in a basement, so when the person asked to speak to someone in sales I came back on the phone with a slightly different tone.”
This trick worked and they place a huge order of 20,000 units and after that, he didn’t look back.
Most people have never heard of this company because it sells it’s software to the companies instead of the consumers but today it has annual revenue generation of 80 million.
He turned down numerous takeover bids, including an undisclosed offer from Mircosoft in 2006, saying that he wants Soti to ‘become as big as they get’ in the computer world.
He was born in Pakistan to a Roman Catholic family ho later emigrated to Canada because they wanted their kids to have a safe place grow up in and have a good education.
Mr. Rodrigues did his degree in computer science and mathematics at the University of Toronto and worked many years as a consultant before launching Soti.
Today the company is valued at more than $1bn (£770m) and has 17,000 business customers around the world, and 700 employees across 22 countries and instead of still being limited to Mr. Rodrigues’ basement, the company has expanded having its headquarters split across two buildings in Mississauga.
A technology journalist who has researched on Mr. Rodrigues said that Soti has been such a success because it’s unique approach
He also said that “I think Soti is an example of a company that has succeeded by being focused on a business niche,”
“A lot of its rivals are huge vendors that play in virtually every aspect of IT. That’s fine for those customers that like ‘one throat to choke’, but for others a company that is a specialist represents a better fit.’