Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

Meet Radha Vembu, the 'invisible' force behind Zoho Mail's success

Radha Vembu has led Zoho Mail on a growth trajectory with her unwavering focus

Published: Nov 14, 2019 10:49:14 AM IST
Updated: Mar 19, 2021 02:03:30 PM IST

Meet Radha Vembu, the 'invisible' force behind Zoho Mail's successRadha Vembu

As Zoho Mail’s product manager—a designation she hasn’t changed since 2007—Radha Vembu has managed to position the product among the top five business e-mail providers globally, competing with Microsoft and Google. Findings suggest she is among the 10 richest women in the country—reportedly the second richest—but Vembu, 45, cites company policy and declines to comment, neither confirming nor denying the claims.

She prefers to stay “invisible” and let the product do the talking. After graduating in 1997 with a degree in industrial management from IIT-Madras, she joined Zoho Corporation—originally known as AdventInc—founded by her older brother, Sridhar (No 76 on the Forbes India Rich List with a net worth of $1.83 billion), the year before. Since taking charge of Zoho Mail 12 years ago, she has driven its staggering growth. “We’ve doubled the number of customers and revenue compared to last year. I’m constantly thinking about how to improve one of the most technically challenging products in the company. We like delighting and surprising our customers with contextual integration,” she tells Forbes India

Currently, she also looks after Zoho Workplace, manages a team of 250 and is involved in the process of the 45-plus products of Zoho Corporation. “I am involved in creating a bias-free workplace and personally address internal grievances,” she says.

Vembu, who keenly keeps herself out of the public eye both online and offline, says, “The quality of product matters, not the people behind it. Most of the senior management does not want any limelight.”

In her free time, Vembu tries to make time for gardening, her favourite activity outside of work.

(This story appears in the 27 December, 2019 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)