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AiThority Interview with Manish Sood, CEO at Reltio

AiThority Interview with Manish Sood, CEO at Reltio

Hi Manish, welcome to our interview Series. Please tell us about Reltio’s core offerings.

At Reltio, we have been helping financial services and insurance companies modernize and transform their businesses for several years. We work with large and mid-sized companies like Fulton Bank, helping them achieve a full 360 view of the customer across core banking, compliance, and digital channels, including entity-to-entity relationships and the ability to enrich the data with, among other things, advanced analytics and real-time data collection for sales representatives leading to improved customer satisfaction.

Recently, we expanded our commitment to our financial services and insurance clients – and the industry as a whole – with customized, pre-configured models for both industries: Reltio for Financial Services and Reltio for Insurance. We call these solutions “velocity packs” because they help organizations speed time-to-value for their modern data management (MDM) transformations. The velocity packs come with pre-built configurations, integrations, and other assets specific to the financial services or insurance industries, which significantly slashes implementation time – from potentially years to just weeks. These products make collecting, unifying, and enriching core data much easier. The built-in, intuitive, low-code/no-code integration tools let business leaders begin using real-time data to drive business outcomes far more quickly than traditional MDM solutions.

What can Reltio do for its client business? Please highlight your modern multi-cloud platform.

I launched Reltio, the industry’s first cloud-native SaaS MDM platform, in 2011 when I recognized that companies in every industry need to unify siloed information, data, and applications in a trusted, timely way. I understood then that the cloud was the ultimate opportunity for all to transform their businesses and remain competitive in today’s digital-first world. Most large companies have significant challenges gaining value from their data because it is “siloed” or trapped inside their legacy systems.

Fixing this problem via traditional methods became overly complicated, time-consuming, and expensive and failed to deliver the results needed for these transformations.

Reltio provides clean, connected, high-quality, and actionable data that analysts, data scientists and business users can trust to give them accurate, up-to-date insights. This lets leaders and experts focus on growing revenue, becoming more efficient, and improving risk management rather than finding, merging, and fixing core data. Reltio does everything for them in a user-friendly way and in real-time, which has been a game-changer for our customers.

Our multi-cloud strategy allows businesses to choose the best-of-breed solutions from different providers and minimizes the risk of disruption. An enterprise can protect its systems and ensure business continuity by using multiple cloud providers and building redundancies, which is particularly important for mission-critical systems that must be up 24/7. Reltio’s platform is multi-cloud which simplifies data unification across an organization, allowing great flexibility and helps us meet our customers where they want to be.

You entered into partnership with Google to streamline the consolidation, and data enrichment in real-time through master data management (Google BigQuery).

Could you please explain your strategies behind this?

Reltio’s partnership with Google Cloud addresses the problem of data fragmentation and poor data quality head-on. We are simplifying the process of harnessing, cleansing, and unifying core data sets — like customer data — from various sources and creating a single source of trusted data directly within Google Cloud BigQuery through an integrated and automated experience.

Reltio enables customers to unify their data in BigQuery easily and helps them deliver better outcomes using clean, trusted, real-time data.

How is Artificial Intelligence playing its role for your company?

What more are you expecting out of the tech domain?

We view AI/ML through several lenses, including a capability within our platform and a challenge our customers are trying to solve. As organizations across every industry integrate AI/ML tools in various ways, there is a significant and growing need for clean, connected, and accurate real-time data for feeding those models. The performance of an AI/ML model heavily depends on the quality of the data it is trained on. The model’s predictions or classifications can be wrong if data is inaccurate, biased, or incomplete. “Garbage in, garbage out” is the phrase we commonly use at Reltio to convey the significance of trusted data in the context of AI/ML.

We also integrate ML capabilities into our product to streamline and enhance the process of core data unification.

Our teams have incorporated AI and ML tools into our platform for years.

Most recently, we launched our 2023.2 release upgrades, which include augmented entity resolution capabilities with the industry’s first pre-trained ML models. As application proliferation grows exponentially across organizations, unifying data across siloed sources becomes increasingly challenging. Many organizations deploy teams of data stewards to manage this through manual processes. ML significantly speeds up the process and frees up the time of data stewards to work on more value-added projects.

Reltio’s Connected Data Platform provides trusted, high-quality matching recommendations out of the box and in a fraction of the time and cost previously required.

It’s 2023, and one needs a data management solution that scales with changing regulatory landscapes as regulators create more privacy protection.

How are you dealing with it?

Our philosophy is that Modern Data Management platforms should organically support the key elements of regulatory frameworks in every jurisdiction and in every context around the globe.  One key step is to ensure that data is stored in a location that complies with the relevant laws and regulations. This may involve working with cloud providers or other third-party vendors that can provide appropriate data storage solutions. Another important step is to develop appropriate data management policies and procedures that comply with the relevant data protection laws and regulations.

Our platform ensures that organizations can store and manage their data in compliance with relevant local laws and regulations. This includes coordinating or directly managing local data centers to ensure data is stored in compliance with requirements. These local facilities understand the local policies and update their business continuously according to all local and residency policies, each with robust data management procedures to protect sensitive data from unauthorized access. Reltio can protect sensitive data and comply with data sovereignty regulations, no matter where our customers operate. Not all data sovereignty regulations are the same or limited to data privacy. Many countries restrict where data can reside, and some even restrict the ability to view private data from outside the country.

Regardless of the regulatory environment in which our customers operate, we are committed to helping them achieve and maintain compliance.

What are the key trends that are changing the digital landscape for 2023-24?

Not surprisingly, there have been significant advancements in AI and ML within data management platforms within the last year. I expect to see even more growth and innovation in AI and machine learning technology.

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As seen with our AI product release or others from Salesforce and IBM, AI has already made a mark on the community, and more updates are promised for users.

In addition to AI and ML, I expect to see templatized, and low-code / no-code data solutions become more widely adopted. These easily customizable services are faster to implement and save money for businesses. In the current economic climate, companies, and business leaders are lowering operational costs anywhere possible, including replacing legacy tech solutions and platforms. These legacy solutions transition to new, less expensive products with a fast onboarding process and less long-term maintenance.

Beyond the faster integration, these solutions must also be easily scalable for any sized business. With simple adoption and scalability, business owners and leaders can realize these data points and understand the long-term impacts quickly.

One of the biggest challenges retail businesses have today is delivering a truly omnichannel experience to their customers.

How are you overcoming this issue?

Retailers can dramatically improve customer experience using cloud-based data solutions that unify core customer data in real-time, and transform their business.

With Reltio, our customers can make high-quality recommendations, experience a seamless history of each customer, and truly understand and anticipate what they might need or want.

Across industries, data is partially or completely transitioning from on-premise to cloud storage. While cloud solutions improve the overall customer experience, they also demand better security and must avoid creating low-quality data or data silos.

Large and small retailers use multiple applications and services, and their data is created there, but many applications don’t verify data quality or integrate with other apps. These missteps generate fragmented data, and teams can waste time and money fixing serious problems. That’s why modern data management solutions with AI-fueled entity resolution are so necessary.

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As per recent statistics, there is a hacker attack every 39 seconds, what are your strategies to deal with this situation where security is being compromised?

Similarly, with regulatory standards, data privacy and security are a top priority for any data management company. Our products are consistently updated to protect against attacks, and our security teams work with customers night and day to ensure their data is safe. As we also operate Reltio in the public clouds, our customers can leverage the billions of dollars invested in the security, expertise, and infrastructures of AWS, Azure, and GCP.  As these services are so large and universal, they have set the industry standard for security.

Companies moving and storing data in the cloud can leverage best-in-class and the highest standards in today’s landscape.

What technology have you leveraged to improve models using real-time data?

Could you explain to our readers with an example?

The importance of real-time operations cannot be overstated, especially for B2C companies.

Access to updated customer data across all channels in real time allows businesses to offer a consistent and connected customer experience. This increases customer retention, loyalty, wallet share, and facilitates seamless cross-channel experiences, such as online orders with in-store pickups or returns. Moreover, a unified and mastered product data system means new product data can be input once and instantly made available across all consumer-facing systems, paving the way for synchronized product launches across various channels, including mobile, web, and in-store.

CarMax, a leading retailer in the used auto sector, set out to redefine automotive retail with an unwavering focus on integrity, honesty, and transparency. To support fast-paced and responsive customer interactions across an ever-expanding digital landscape, CarMax aimed to seamlessly integrate a myriad of legacy and cloud-based applications, emphasizing the necessity of real-time operations where data, even 15 minutes old, was considered outdated.

The Reltio Connected Data Platform was implemented to integrate CRM, POS, and other vital systems, enabling CarMax to achieve real-time operational capabilities.

As a result of implementing the MDM solution, CarMax witnessed transformative outcomes. It provided a personalized and interconnected customer experience across all touchpoints, free from data duplicity and inaccuracies. This allowed it to swiftly adapt to shifting consumer needs, as evidenced by its introduction of new services such as curbside pickup during the COVID pandemic.

Furthermore, CarMax could confidently rely on consolidated source data for auditing and set the stage for future data-centric projects.

Summing up the strategic value of the Reltio platform, it was highlighted that Reltio stands central to CarMax’s customer interactions, acting as a linchpin in uniting all user experiences.

Tell us about some of the top tech events that you’ll be participating in (as a speaker or guest) in 2023-2024.

In October, Reltio is co-sponsoring DataDriven24, a Modern Data Management Conference, in Dallas, Texas. I will be speaking on modern data management, the role of AI/ML in the tech landscape. We’re also bringing in luminaries in the data field, including DJ Patil, former U.S. Chief Data Scientist from 2015-2017, Bill Schmarzo, known as the Dean of Big Data, and Inderpal Bhandari, IBM Global Chief Data Officer.

We will also have practitioners and professionals from Liberty Mutual, Fulton Bank, Google, HPE, and Workday as panelists and moderators.

Thank you, Manish! That was fun and we hope to see you back on soon.

[To share your insights with us, please write to]

Manish is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Reltio, the first cloud-native, software-as-a-service (SaaS) data platform. An entrepreneur with a vision of the big-picture ways data can drive business and industry transformations, Manish founded Reltio in 2011 to help organizations accelerate the value of their data and deliver on business outcomes. Since its inception, Manish has led Reltio’s evolution from the concept stage to a high-growth company valued at $1.7 billion with more than $100 million in annual revenue.

Manish previously led product strategy and management for the Master Data Management (MDM) platform at Informatica and Siperian. During his career, Manish has architected some of the largest and most widely used data management solutions used by most Fortune 500 companies today. Manish holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Andhra University College of Engineering.

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Reltio’s cloud-native data management SaaS platform unifies – in real time – core data from multiple sources into a single source of trusted information. Clean, connected, actionable data enables Reltio customers to grow revenue, increase efficiencies, and manage risk. Leading enterprise brands—from more than 140 countries spanning multiple industries—rely on our award-winning solution to turn data into their most valuable asset.

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