Exeleon Magazine

Meet Ross James: An IT Veteran Hungry for Excellence

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Information Technology (IT) is considered the field of advanced and future technologies that help mankind lead simpler lives. However, “latest” and “future” may be ironic as IT has been around for a long time; in fact it existed before the invention of computers. Abacus is known to be the first tool ever made in the industry. Ever since then, IT has come a long way. Today, major economies are dependent on the industry and would collapse without them.

It must have been a great challenge for people to grapple with a constantly changing and ever-growing industry, let alone creating a business around it. However, for passionate leaders, great challenges are mere drivers that lead to success.

Ross James, CEO, CTO, and Founder of Accloud, is the perfect example of passionate leadership vs the growing challenges of IT. With over three decades of experience in the field, Ross has grown on to become a veteran of the game.

Founded in 2015, Accloud offers state-of-the-art cloud-based management system tools to Small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs). Under Ross’s supervision, the company aspires to help entrepreneurs “grow at the scale of their ambition.”

Accloud’s journey began when Ross decided to create an end-to-end platform to enable B2B trading along with accessible micro-finance services. The need for the same emerged when the World Bank announced crisis in the SME job creation market. Ross saw this as an opportunity and created the Accloud platform that can help small businesses actively participate in the formal economy by ensuring more employment and social wellbeing.

In 2019, Accloud rolled out a full suite of mobile-first business management and accounting tools, while offering SMEs access to affordable capital and entry to new markets. In addition to this, Ross collaborated with the government of India to help them bring millions of rural citizens online.

From Exporting Computer Parts to Building a Community

Adaptability is one of the most important traits of a true leader. It enables them to identify the shifting dynamics timely, so that they have first-mover advantage against new opportunities and enough time to be ready against new challenges.

Ross’s journey has been similar to a certain extent. In his thirty years of experience, he has observed the IT grow from an industry of the niche to the most profitable.

For Ross, these changes were opportunities to shift gears and find new problems so he can build better solutions for emerging businesses. From exporting computer parts to specializing in LAN integration to creating software solutions that help businesses grow, it has been quite a journey for him and Accloud.

We Walked So You Could Run

One of the greatest challenges for entrepreneurs in today’s business environment is managing a business. In the modern business era where competition is intense, managing a business is a game of margins. Hence, entrepreneurs today require years of expertise and technologically advanced solutions to cover the extra mile.

Having faced similar challenges in his early entrepreneurial days, Ross is aware of these pain points. He has used his experience to build a platform that eases the pressure off business owners. Accloud offers a diverse range of solutions including micro finance, e-commerce, and accounting, which help businesses focus on their products and services.

Additionally, Accloud has grown to become a community among like-minded businesses from the secluded parts of the world. According to Ross, this will create a sense of community among isolated businesses in developing economies.

Finding the Right People

Building a company is a long and complicated process, however, for determined entrepreneurs, it’s an enriching journey. Ross went through his fair share of learnings in the process of building Accloud.

Among which, one that stuck with him over the years is related to people. Ross admits that finding the right set of people for a business is one of the greatest challenges an entrepreneur comes across.

Another major challenge that he has come across is undercapitalization, which can be a sour spot for any enterprise.

Not to mention the COVID-19 period, that can be counted as the era of uncertainties for all businesses across the world. According to Ross, the pandemic and the resultant lockdowns have been specifically harsh on growing businesses.

Speaking about the issue he states “I’ve seen the massive impact felt by so many small and medium businesses who have struggled to survive the lockdowns. And as financial markets have tightened, so have capital markets, which has been a huge challenge for growing businesses.”

The Team Driving the Company

The secret to a successful company lies in its value system. Great companies are driven not on numbers but a specific set of values, which is followed by all their employees. Ross believes that the passion with which he started the company can be seen in his team. According to him, the core values on which the company’s foundation was established, align perfectly with the values that drive his team every day.

Led by Ian Beard, the Head Programmer of Accloud, Ross has a remarkable team of 20 developers in Europe. In addition to that, the company operates through partners in India, who provide constant feedback to help upgrade its solutions. Ross believes that this kind of open communication is one of the key factors in making Accloud a success story.

Ross values his team and feels privileged to work with them. He states “I have been so fortunate to have an amazing team of developers around me for many years now, helping get Accloud off the ground.

Great Idea. Better Advice.

It is said that great ideas can change the world. But great advice can help sustain those ideas till the time of execution. All great companies are excellent ideas that sustained long enough to become great companies.

Similar is the case with Accloud. An idea turned into an epitome of growth, culture, and success.

Ross, who spearheaded this idea, has one such advice to share. He advises new entrepreneurs to find the right mix of people. According to him, it is very important for a leader to be around people who can support, encourage, and mentor them in their entrepreneurial journey.

Ripple Effects of One Good Deed

Giving back to society and the environment is something all businesses talk about, however, it is very difficult to define how the same can be achieved. Ross has made it simple by building a business that impacts the people directly. He has strategically created solutions that will positively impact those “less fortunate, less privileged, but are striving to achieve.”

Ross had always dreamt of doing something for the people in Africa, and now, looking at the response Accloud has received in Australia, it seems like his dream will sooner rather than later turn into a reality. He believes that through Accloud, he will be able to help all those who stood by him in his days of struggle.

A Sustainable Change for Better

Ross is incredibly happy to share that he has big plans for Accloud. The company is even considering getting listed in the London Stock Exchange, which will further enhance its appearance in the UK market.

Moreover, Accloud is anticipated to reach around 2 million users by next year, due to its consistently growing operations in India.

On the other hand, the company is expected to expand its business in Latin America, Nigeria, and South Africa by the end of 2024.

Accloud’s mission is “to make a sustainable change for the better in emerging and high-growth economies.” And with the aforementioned development and expansion strategies, it’s fair to claim that Ross and his team are one step closer.

Visit Accloud Website.

Contact Accloud on LinkedIn.

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