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Last Update: Saturday June 12, 2021

Key Idea: Go for the Impossible

Shiv Krishnan always dreamed big and today he has what most of us consider a big company.  It didn't happen overnight and he prepared with education and by doing things very small when he started on his own.  Now he has over 500 employees and  the biggest customer in the world.   More...

Key Question:


From the very beginning, Shiv thought BIG. Big contracts with big customers!

Yes, INDUS was certainly helped by attaining 8A certification, particularly in obtaining contracts with the U.S. government. But had he not been eligible for such status, we have no doubt he would have succeeded anyway.

Q: How does a small business owner think big?

A: Any sales person will tell you that it can take as much effort to close a small sale as it does to close a big one. The length of the suspect-prospect-customer pipeline does not vary by size of order. You have to identify the potential customer (suspect), make contact (prospect) and make the sale (customer). As business owners we should identify suspects among the largest companies and governments who would benefit from our service. Why? First, larger companies have bigger needs which translate to bigger orders. Large companies often are more stable and more likely to continue in business, meaning recurring orders. Also, many large companies actively look for ways to buy more products and services from small businesses in their communities. Often, their biggest problem is finding you!

Community involvement is a great way to meet people from large organizations. Get involved with your local Chamber of Commerce and your city’s office of economic development. Small Business Development Corporations, available, throughout the country, are another great conduit to large companies. Watch the local newspaper for procurement fairs, where large companies set up booths to meet with small suppliers. Join trade organizations and attend national conferences. Trade organizations exert a lot of effort in increasing members’ revenue and much of that effort is targeted at larger organizations.

Think about it

Are you selling your product or service to large companies and governments?

Clip from: INDUS - Diversity & Mentoring

From Just a Job to Being an Owner

Washington, DC: In 1979 Shiv Krishnan arrived here from Madras, India to go to college. He got a job and was doing well.  But in 1991 he risked everything to start his own business.  INDUS would be a technology innovator.  He did well. Today this company has 500+ employees and major clients including the US government.  They do Geographic Information Systems (GIS), database management, data warehousing and  mining, and more.

This story is about an immigrant to America. Like so many, he came with nothing, got a job to save money to start a business. When he put it all at risk,  he knew his safety net was to go get another job.  It wasn't easy... but that's the USA. This country is a beacon and inspiration to the entrepreneurial spirit within all of humanity.  When freedom rings,  new songs are written!

Shiv is a person who is open to learning from everyone. He empowers that  attitude among his employees, his suppliers, and his customers. He mentors people and he is always open to being mentored.  INDUS is part of SAIC's Mentor-Protégé program which has helped this business to grow. 

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INDUS Corporation

Shiv Krishnan, Founder

1951 Kidwell Drive, Eighth Floor
Vienna, VA 22182

Visit our web site:

Office: 7035066700

Business Classification:
Information Services

Year Founded: 1991

Go for the Impossible

HATTIE: Hi, I'm Hattie Bryant. What happens when we genuinely celebrate the success of others and we open ourselves to learn from them? What is our path to wisdom? To a fulfilled life? In this week's episode you meet a person who is open to learning from everyone and he encourages that same attitude among his employees, his suppliers, and his customers. He mentors people and he is always open to being mentored by others.

Monuments to great thinkers are Washington, DC trademarks. We discovered a few miles a way in Vienna, Virginia great thinking in the work of this man and his award winning information technology company, INDUS Corporation.

Shiv Krishnan came to this country in 1979 with virtually nothing, and today he has 500 employees and 80 million in annual sales.
  SHIV: (Voiceover) You do not build a business to be a small business. You don't build a business to be this or that. You build a business to be a sustainable business entity that can keep going on and on and on. That doesn't happen automatically.

HATTIE: (Voiceover) Shiv Krishnan, a soulful person from India became a classic American entrepreneur. He launched INDUS in 1993, quickly focused on web enabling static information, then grew and grew and grew - over 1,000% in three years.
There is a special joy of life in this business.
His customers now include SAIC, the General Services Administration, the Departments of Commerce, Justice, Transportation (and) his first homerun, MapQuest.

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