India Inc is excited about generative AI, says Salesforce India CEO

Salesforce India Chairman and CEO Arundhati Bhattacharya said on Tuesday that India Inc is excited about generative artificial intelligence (Gen AI), but the actual deployment of the new-age technology will take a long time.

“We are still quite far away from actually deploying generative AI in Inc. India, even if you look at the use of Cloud in India Inc, it’s still very uncommon,” she said while speaking to the media.

“To access a huge amount of data, one needs a cloud system. So, until we see more adoption of the cloud itself, it will be very difficult for India Inc to innovate and embrace AI and general generation AI.”

Bhattacharya also sought to allay public fears about artificial intelligence leading to a large number of job losses, but added that the nature of jobs may change, requiring upskilling and reshaping of talent pools.

“So, India has the opportunity to jump into AI and generative AI. Now, how far and how long it will take, it’s anyone’s guess… Generative AI is something that is maturing… It’s not quite a mature thing…” She said.

India’s overall environment is “very supportive,” Bhattacharya said, stressing India’s advantage in its large pool of talent as well as its general digital infrastructure.

“India’s stack… Aadhaar, UPI, healthcare platforms… is not something that is available in most countries. The Indian public goods space is a huge enabler and most other countries don’t have that, so we have a huge advantage,” she said.

The ex-president of State Bank of India, the former public lender, said that information technology is evolving rapidly and companies that do not keep up will be left behind.

With so many ‘enablers’ in the country, Bhattacharya has shown confidence that the industry and institutions will rise to the challenge and make full use of digital technology to gain an advantage. Salesforce, a leading customer relationship management (CRM) company, on Tuesday announced the launch of Salesforce ‘Starter’ for Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (MSME) in India.

Starter is a CRM that includes sales, service, and email communication tools in one suite, the company said, helping businesses get started so they have the tools to improve customer experiences, reduce costs, and increase revenue.