September 23, 2021 7:20:28 pm
Freshworks, which created history by becoming the first Indian SaaS company to get listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange, has seen more than 500 of its employees in India becoming crorepatis in the process.
Freshworks co-founder Girish Mathrubootham described the listing as an “incredibly proud moment” as “Freshworks is the first SaaS company from India to go public in the US.”
“What I am super happy about is what this means for India SaaS. We have a whole next set of entrepreneurs and founders who are building companies that are scaling nicely, and we all want to share this dream of India as a prospect nation, and I’m excited to see the next set of companies go public, and we want to see more global product companies from India,” he said.
He added that the IPO has given him a great sense of fulfilment, given that more than 76 per cent of Freshworks’ employees hold shares in the company.
“Today, we have 76 per cent of our employees who own shares in Freshworks, and that number went down to 76 per cent because we hired a lot of folks in the last few months….more than 500 of our employees in India are crorepatis now and around 70 of them are under the age of 30. They passed out of college a few years ago,” he added.
Mathrubootham said all these employees have contributed and “wealth has to be shared with people who create it”.
“It’s not just for the founders to get rich or the investors to get rich…as we continue our public journey, there is a massive opportunity for us to create a life-changing impact for many employees and people who believe in our mission,” he added.
Mathrubootham noted that the company — which has raised funding from investors like Accel and Sequoia Capital — has a unique strategic advantage with its access to top talent in India across Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad. Globally, the company has 4,300 employees.
Founded in 2010 by Girish Mathrubootham and Shan Krishnasamy in Chennai, the California-headquartered Freshworks has raised over USD 1 billion from the IPO.
The stock made its debut on Wednesday at USD 43.5 per share on the Nasdaq, up 21 per cent from the listing price of USD 36.
Freshworks’ IPO involved issue of 28.5 million shares (Class A stock) at USD 36 per share. Besides, the company has also given underwriters a 30-day option to purchase an additional up to 2.85 million shares of Class A common stock at the IPO price minus underwriting discounts and commissions.
Mathrubootham said the company’s employees are also shareholders.
“This IPO has given me the opportunity as CEO to fulfil my responsibility to all the employees of Freshworks till date, including those who are ex-employees today, who have believed in us over the last 10 years and contributed to Freshworks,” he said.
Mathrubootham, in a tweet, had said the listing is a “dream come true”.
Freshworks’ investor Accel in a note said it had led seed investment in the company in 2011 as its first investor, and participated in or led every subsequent round.
“Today, Freshworks is a global business with more than 50,000 customers, revenues in excess of USD 300 million, and serving a market opportunity of more than USD 120 billion,” it added.
It referred to Freshworks as a “torch-bearer” as it is the first SaaS (software as a service) company of Indian origin to list on a US exchange.
“Up until now, India’s tech exports have largely been associated with offshore outsourcing and IT services.
“However, with an immense pool of engineering and product talent and an aspirational eye to entrepreneurship, India is a region that can also be the founding ground for world-class technology product companies…We are eager to see who will now follow, and from where they may emerge,” it said.
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