Gopu Nair (GN) got bitten by the entrepreneurial bug very early in life. He was never afraid to take risks. He was all about taking massive and immediate action when he saw something he wanted.
GN is energized by stories of success. He loves reading positive books. When people around him complain that the worst is here, he convinces them the best days are yet to come, as an optimist. People call him a natural born promoter. When GN finds something he believes in (be it a product, service, person or mind set), he does not stop talking about it. He naturally shares it with everyone around him – and he does it with great enthusiasm. Friends call him a “salesman’s salesman”.
GN reasons that his successes and influence is mostly the result of his upbringing. “My parents raised me to believe that you’ve got to take care of yourself and society, and society doesn’t owe you anything. He told me you can do anything if you really want to do it. I am blessed to have a family that instilled in me a belief that anything is possible if I wanted to put my mind to it,” he says, adding, “and Dubai is a fantastic place to do it.”
Born and raised in Mumbai, India, GN moved to Dubai at a young age after completing his Bachelors in Electronics & Telecommunication Engineering. GN speaks about Dubai with reverence. “I love the country. I’m truly passionate about the UAE and I think we’re truly blessed to live in a land with so much going for it.”
GN tried several desk jobs that offered the steady income – but they drove him insane. Long staff meetings, being micro-managed by hyper-analytical people, having to sit in a cubicle while his great ideas got shunned one after the other – was more than he could handle. GN discovered that he enjoyed the freedom of being outside the office. He immensely enjoyed days where he could be out and about, meeting clients, catching a flight to meet the next big customer, closing a deal over lunch/dinner in a hotel.
In 2006, GN decided to start his own business. The idea for the business, Tablix, came to him in a flash. The minute he had the epiphany, he knew it was a million-dollar idea. GN couldn’t sleep. He was so excited about his innovation. He had to tell someone – everyone. Those around him cautioned him to take it slow, get lots of advice and write a business plan. To GN, even though the advice appeared sound, it felt like a lot of work. He started to write a business plan, but got bored 20 minutes into the process. He left the process to the experts, a practice of which he still strongly follows.
10 years later, under the leadership of GN as the CEO, Tablix is now highly reputed as a specialist technology service provider in the areas of Electronic Security, Audio Visuals & Smart Integrated Technologies. The company boasts an impressive list of clients, in virtually every industry.
Tablix has been recognized in the past as one of the country’s best-managed companies. GN says that “the model for the organization was founded on trying to answer a market need as opposed to how this business had traditionally been established”, adding “we were able to create a business model that was not only unique but also able to be profitable and would make a difference in the business of the clients we worked for.” He maintains that his strategy comes from the market not wanting another technology integrator, but something more.
As for the future, GN plans to continue investing in new business ideas, and simply enjoying what it has grown into: a tremendously sustainable business. GN has a vision to migrate the company in the next 3 years to a revenue size of over AED.300 million. “I want to just continue to do what I’m doing, and realize my vision for Tablix, which is to build a technologies service company that’s highly qualified and highly experienced.”
And, not surprisingly, GN doesn’t plan to stop being entrepreneurial anytime soon, saying “that it’s a sign of a good entrepreneur—you never stop. You’re never done.” Tablix Technology LLC currently operates out of offices in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, and currently employs 72 people. GN only believes in “working smarter, not harder”. He has a clear vision of what he wants to accomplish.
Needless to mention, GN also has faced what many entrepreneurs face: the struggle to find work and life balance. But he has managed to come out on top, blessed with the support of those around him. “We all sacrificed where we needed to, but we always ensured that our family was the most important thing. I really believe it takes a village to raise a child, in the same way it takes a family working together to create a business opportunity.” He feels blessed to have a supportive wife and 2 kids. Another important mention is GN’s younger brother, Kartik, the part owner and the epitome of Tablix’s business success.
GN’s advice to new entrepreneurs is simple. “Make sure your vision is clearly understood by the people around you. Ensure that you hire people that are experts in your field, and always hire people that you think are better than you can afford. Make sure you’ve got a good CFO, and that you believe in the vision yourself.”
GN also has advice for new business owners in the tough economy that exists today. “You have to make sure you have a business model that is viable. Make sure you have a strategy in which Sales and Marketing is playing a significant role in the execution of the strategy. Sales is the business driver and Marketing is your business enabler.”