Interviewer: How did you come up with the idea of The FD Centre Services India P Ltd ? What was the process behind the creation of this company
Mr.Rajarshi Datta: The FD Centre Services India P Ltd (Brand Name: CFO Centre) is part of the CFO Centre Group headquartered in the UK. They did not have a presence in India till 2014. I’ve always liked building from scratch and I also realized many SMEs/Startups in India lack from not having the CFO brain in their system to help them set up systems/ processes and ultimately to help them scale up. With that in mind, I got in touch with the CFO Centre Group. When I went to UK to finalise the deal, the Founder of CFO Centre, Colin Mills liked the ’colour of my eyes’, as he likes to put it, and we started the Indian company, which is a subsidiary of the UK holding company in Feb 2015. Jokes aside, I guess there was an instant connection between me and the founders (Sara & Colin) cemented by our common purpose.
Interviewer: What steps did you take to make your company stand out in this vastly competitive field?
Mr.Rajarshi Datta: The holding company of the CFO Centre Group is Liberti. The word ‘Liberti’ in Latin stands for freedom from slavery. We have a panel of CFOs who have chosen freedom and flexibility over prestigious corporate jobs. In turn what we want to achieve for our clients is to give the business owners that freedom and flexibility, which allows them to pursue whatever they choose to, without having to compromise on a good night’s sleep or family time. And they can afford to do it, peaceful in the knowledge that we, as their business partners, are safeguarding and keeping a hawk eye over their businesses at any given time.
Interviewer: What are your core values? What measures do you take to stick to your core values?
Mr.Rajarshi Datta: Our induction program imbues and nurtures these values from day one with every new joinee. We start with trying to ensure that we get the right kind of people who have these core values, to begin with, when we go through the recruitment process.
As a group, we don’t work as a corporate although we are the world’s no.1 in part time CFO services category. We work as a family and that’s the culture we cultivate.
Interviewer: What are your future plans in order to expand your company further? What new things do you plan to do?
Mr.Rajarshi Datta: Right now in India, we have operations in Mumbai, Bengaluru, NCR, Pune & Hyderabad. In the next 6-8 months we plan to start our operations in Chennai, Kolkata, Coimbatore. In the next Financial Year we plan to start our operations in Sri Lanka.
For us it is very important that we have the right team who will build on our core values and not just take this as a delivery model. So we are being, consciously, very cautious and steady in our growth path.
Primarily, till now we have worked with companies who don’t have or can’t afford a full time CFO. We have been approached by quite a few CFOs who have more than 25-30 years experience with solid corporate exposure at the highest levels and we feel that we can leverage that experience in servicing bigger corporates where their board will appreciate an outside perspective and expertise, which will elevate them to an entirely different level. Sometimes the existing CFOs of corporates don’t have the time to practically do everything if they don’t have a very strong team. We see a huge opportunity here.
Interviewer: What advice would you give to the up and coming entrepreneurs and small business corporations in order to help them grow?
Mr.Rajarshi Datta: Few points come to mind :
1) Speed - Its the essence of any growing business. You need to achieve faster than the best in the business,
2) Culture- It is very important that employees understand the start up culture while they work for a growing company, The founders need to develop/imbibe that culture within the organization.
3) Honesty & Ethics - This is a must and there is no supplement to it.
4) Hard Work – Again there is no alternative to this.
5) Vision & Patience – Every entrepreneur needs to have a vision, a business plan to achieve that vision and the patience to see things falling in place.