Kazuki Ohta’s journey to the United States began with an ambition to build a global software company. With no money, minimal English, and a computer science background, Ohta arrived in Silicon Valley determined to make his mark.
Ohta and his co-founders started Treasure Data, a software company that aimed to democratize data by providing an analytics stack in the cloud. When they pitched the idea to investors, they were met with skepticism as few people were interested in “throwing away” data to the cloud.
But Ohta and his team persevered, and their customer-centric approach paid off. In the last ten years, Treasure Data has grown from three people to 700 globally, with annual recurring revenue of more than 100 million. Ohta attributes the success of Treasure Data to their focus on customers and listening to what they want.
In this era of unprecedented economic uncertainty, Ohta advises other tech companies on future-proofing their business. Ohta believes that the strongest companies can adjust to the changing environment. He suggests that companies focus on providing customer value, as this will help them to survive in the current recession.
Companies must be frugal and invest in data and analytics that will provide positive ROI. Consolidating SaaS tools is also key for survival. Ohta also believes that focus matters now more than ever. Companies need to focus on their operations and how they are serving their customers. It’s no longer possible to try various things; the focus is the name of the game.
As a venture-backed company, Ohta has had to think about how to maximize their exit potential. He believes that an IPO is just a milestone and not a goal and that companies should focus on creating a long-term, sustainable growth engine.
As a leader, he is also focused on building a strong team by hiring the best talent and creating an environment where ideas are valued.
Data privacy and data breaches are a major concern for any tech company. Ohta believes that companies need to consider the ethical use of data and get consent from their customers before collecting and using their data. He also believes that companies need sophisticated management of collecting and merging customer data.
Ohta’s journey is a testament to the power of focus and resilience. With the right approach and a focus on customer value, companies can survive and thrive in any economic climate.
As Ohta advises, “It’s not a big data era anymore…you have to get the consent from the users, how the data gets collected and used, and use the data along with it.”
Looking ahead, Ohta sees an exciting future for Treasure Data. He believes that there is an opportunity to serve the remaining 1,950 out of the 2,000 Global 2000 companies and make a positive impact on billions of people. With an ambitious goal and a customer-focused approach, Ohta is set to continue Treasure Data’s legacy of success.
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