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Singolar Enters SAP Startup Program

By attending a Canadian government program in Silicon Valley, Wolfville-based Singolar has initiated a relationship with one of the world’s biggest enterprise software companies.

Five weeks ago, we wrote that Singolar was heading to Northern California to attend the Canadian Technology Accelerator, or CTA, a program that the Canadian consular service offers in tech hubs around the U.S. and the world.

As it went through the program, Singolar got to know representatives of SAP, the German multinational that makes enterprise software to manage business operations and customer relationships. The Nova Scotian company has now been accepted into the SAP startup program, which means it will work with SAP for the next year with the goal of rolling out the Singolar product to the German company’s customers.

“This means that we have a great channel for getting our product across to SAP customers in all kinds of verticals, and that includes big retailers, and major airlines,” said Singolar CEO Suman Kalyan in an interview. “It gives us the ability to go across lots of geographies.”

Singolar — which already had two clients — has developed algorithms that can help companies to better understand how to interact with customers. It therefore helps these companies to deepen customer relationships and attract new customers. Singolar can track customer interaction at a range of points, including contacts with the call centre, on social media, through the website or other avenues.

The company was recently accepted into the Silicon Valley CTA, which helps IT companies make inroads in the world’s technology Mecca. Kalyan said one of the first events was a match-making session, at which Singolar met several major companies and investors, some of who arranged second interviews.

One of these was SAP, which is Europe’s largest software company with 20.8 billion euros (C$30.6 billion) in revenue in 2015.

Kalyan said the two parties ended up speaking on several occasions, and they began to examine how Singolar could be adapted for the SAP platform, which means the product could then be introduced to SAP’s blue chip clients all over the world.

As a result of these meetings, SAP admitted Singolar to its 12-month startup program in Silicon Valley.

Kalyan said his company will spend the first 12 weeks getting its program to operate with the SAP systems. “Then we’ll work with them to take it to their customers and see what they think,” he said.

Being in the startup program also allows the company to attend SAP events and interact with its clients, he added.

Kalyan said that within the next two months Singolar should close its first round of funding. It has been trying to raise $1.5 million.

A native of India, Kalyan spent 18 years in a number of technology roles around the world, for blue chip companies and startups, and working as a consultant. In 2013, he and his family moved to Nova Scotia and he eventually became a tenant in Acadia University’s Rural Innovation Centre.

Even before it joined the CTA, Singolar had two clients: one in Malaysia, and Halifax-based Azorus, which helps post-secondary institutions communicate with incoming students and their families. Azorus and Singolar are piloting an enhanced customer relationship management recruitment tool with three universities: Warwick and Leicester in the U.K., and Ryerson in Toronto.