The Arabia Times: Explain your background and your company in detail.

Padmakumar Nair: I am the Co-Founder and CEO of Ennoventure Inc. An alumnus of MIT Sloan School of Management, I bring with me over 18 years of leadership experience across the globe in devising strategies that bring companies to success. I have managed multi-disciplinary, cross-functional and geographically diverse teams to optimise business value by following a motivational style of leadership and encouraging open communication.

Ennoventure Inc. is a pioneer in covert brand authentication and engagement solutions across multiple industries, including FMCG, agrochemicals and automotive spare parts etc. By imagining a non-disruptive method of determining the authenticity of a product without having to alter the client’s original package design and printing procedure, Ennoventure has developed a way to address problems caused by product counterfeiting in enterprises. In order to give an authentication plus connected packaging experience through smartphones, our anti-counterfeit solution adds an indiscernible digital signature to the package using AI and cryptography. Ennoventure was founded in 2018 with the intention of being an innovative business that creates digital solutions to issues that people encounter on a daily basis. This solution was created to ensure brand authenticity by safeguarding the product packages that can be readily verified by all the stakeholders in the supply chain including the end consumer, with a smartphone scan.

Our flagship product, Enncrypto, is an end-to-end SaaS platform to help brands protect their integrity by providing a secure authentication mechanism by encrypting our invisible signatures on the brand’s artwork. It also provides advanced analytics to track product scan behavior across geographies. Complementing this innovative solution is Vyu, our user-friendly mobile application that simplifies the verification of product genuineness.

Taking it a step further, we have introduced Ennteract, a plug-and-play platform to deliver interactive brand experiences at the point of authentication to engage customers. These unique physical to digital experiences lead to higher engagement, higher brand recall and enhanced loyalty. With Enncrypto, Vyu, and Ennteract combined, brands gain a comprehensive toolkit to safeguard their products, verify purchases, and engage with customers effectively.

With our platform, you can elevate your brand’s integrity, foster customer trust, and build lasting loyalty. We believe in a future where counterfeit products are eliminated, and trust and confidence thrive in the market. Join us in creating a secure and trusted environment for your brand and customers, powered by interactive experiences, state-of-the-art technology, and a user-friendly platform.

The Arabia Times: What are your goals?

Padmakumar Nair: Utilising the financing we have obtained to support our expansion ambitions and further our go-to-market strategy is our current area of focus. We are targeting companies in a range of industry sectors as part of our development goals, with a focus on growing our footprint in the US and European markets in particular. We are dedicated to advancing our technology in the future by extending the scope of our encryption capabilities to include multiple materials and printing technologies as well as exploring new use cases such as traceability, tamper evidence, interactive experiences etc. With this change, we will be able to provide an anti-counterfeiting solution that is even more comprehensive and resilient, helping to protect the authenticity of various items.

We are dedicated to having an excellent global influence in addition to growing our technological products, thus we are putting a lot of effort into sustainability and recycling. By educating customers about product recycling and reuse practices and substituting electronic pamphlets for printed instruction manuals, our solutions are intended to assist in minimizing carbon footprints. In an effort to add value to our clients and promote beneficial social and economic change throughout the world, we are exploring new product verticals and global regions as we develop and broaden our reach.

The Arabia Times: What do you feel is the biggest strength of Ennoventure Inc. right now?

Padmakumar Nair: In the new era shaped by the Covid-19 pandemic, online shopping has become the predominant mode of purchasing for consumers. Recognizing this shift, Ennoventure offers advanced technology to empower brands in building trust and confidence among customers through a robust anti-counterfeit solution seamlessly integrated into digital channels such as a web and a mobile app.

Additionally, Ennoventure addresses the growing need for enhanced security within the digital-first supply chain landscape. By embedding covert signatures throughout the packaging, our solution provides instant product authentication using a smartphone. This enables brands to uphold the integrity of their products, safeguard against counterfeits, and protect their reputation while fostering customer trust.

Ennoventure takes on a crucial role in shaping the future of product authentication and supply chain security in a post-Covid-19 world.

The Arabia Times: What was the path you took to get to where you are today?

Padmakumar Nair: Coming from a product background, I have always believed that customer experience defines your product. In 2018, while doing an executive programme at MIT, I decided to step out of corporate and get into entrepreneurship. So, when I first learned about the issue of counterfeiting, I was in touch with a lot of brands, manufacturers, and printers. I got to know that there were three reasons why they were hesitant to opt for an anti-counterfeit solution: huge process changes, an easily copied or overt solution, and not having the end consumer as a part of the authentication process made it difficult to win the battle against counterfeiters. So, then I approached my former batchmate and friend, Shalini Nair, and asked her if we could have a solution that is invisible, requires no process change, and is easily scannable by the end consumer using a smartphone. Then we ventured into it together and initially started out with a minimum viable product (MVP), tested it out in the actual market, and conducted a couple of angel and bridge fundraising rounds before raising a Series A round of USD 5 million. Today, Ennoventure is one of the leading covert brand authentication and engagement solution providers, with a presence across multiple industries.

Ennoventure just won the award for Most Secure Anti-Counterfeit Technology 2022 at the EMEA Security Conference and Exhibition. Ennoventure has been designated the brand of 2022 by The CEO Story Magazine. Additionally, it won the Smart Innovations Award 2022 organised by Leap and CXODX. It was chosen to get Google Cloud credits & training, and business and technical support under the Google Startups Cloud Programme.

Ennoventure has also been chosen by Microsoft for Startups. It was ranked as one of the 96 Most Innovative Machine Learning Companies with a Cambridge basis. Additionally, it was listed as one of the 101 Most Innovative Machine Learning Companies with a Massachusetts basis. At the EMEA Security Conference and Exhibition, Ennoventure was also recognised as having the “Most Innovative Brand Protection Technology 2021.” It was furthermore admitted into the Cohort of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Innovation Fund (MBRIF) Accelerator Programme. Ennoventure was chosen as a Member of Area 2071 as well. Ennoventure has also joined the International and Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC) and Authentication Solution Providers’ Association (ASPA) with the goal of bolstering its dedication and technological know-how in order to fight product counterfeiting and provide pertinent solutions globally.

The Arabia Times: Why did you start Ennoventure Inc.?

Padmakumar Nair: One of my MIT classmates informed me that every five minutes, a kid in Africa dies from malaria, a curable disease, only due to counterfeit antimalarial drugs. This served as the catalyst for the product’s development. Shalini Nair was in charge of her own startup at the start of 2017 when I approached her about starting the process of forming Ennoventure with the intention of battling counterfeiting. By August 2018, Shalini had submitted two US patent applications; one of them was accepted in November 2018 and the other in February 2019. One is for utilising smartphones to scan labels that include our invisible cryptographic code to verify the authenticity of items, and the other is for design and how the cryptographic code for a certain design is optimised. The additional patent, which was obtained in February 2019, followed the November 2018 grant of the first.

The Arabia Times: What have been the biggest challenges you’ve had to overcome during the journey of your leadership?

Padmakumar Nair: Despite the accomplishments, Ennoventure has had trouble raising funds from investors and expanding the company during the early years. The global pandemic’s effects on other industries, including Ennoventure’s, have caused extra difficulties with funding. Another issue has been the industry’s lack of understanding of the value of cutting-edge anti-counterfeit technology and the necessity of its adoption. Ennoventure has been making a concerted effort to educate clients about the need for anti-counterfeit solutions and how it can protect and bolster businesses. Ennoventure has also had trouble hiring professionals with extensive knowledge of anti-counterfeiting technologies. In order to close this gap, the organisation employed new graduates and gave them in-depth training. As a member of the International AntiCounterfeiting Coalition (IACC), where it wants to improve its technological know-how and provide pertinent solutions internationally, Ennoventure further demonstrates its dedication to preventing product counterfeiting and defending trademarks. The business’ selection as a Member of Area 2071 and admittance into the Mohammed Bin Rashid Innovation Fund (MBRIF) Accelerator Program’s Cohort both show its expanding visibility and involvement in the innovation ecosystem.

From the company’s early years to its Series A fundraising round, Ennoventure saw both successes and challenges. The firm has demonstrated its drive to development and innovation in the realm of brand protection by investing in personnel and training, creating cutting-edge anti-counterfeit technology, and increasing industry awareness.

The Arabia Times: Give us one word that describes you the best.

Padmakumar Nair: Resolute

The Arabia Times: What do you value the most about Ennoventure’s vision?

Padmakumar Nair: Our technology is continuously changing, and we keep a close eye on advancements in AI, camera, mobile, and wearable technologies. We have a broader vision for our product that depends on these technological innovations, so keeping track of them and incorporating them into our solutions is a crucial component of our strategy. We aim at driving a global change through futuristic technology to deliver experiences that empower humans and improve access to information.

The Arabia Times: What are the key values which helped you to overcome the challenges in your path? Tell us something about your memorable incident in your leadership?

Padmakumar Nair: COVID-19 struck us just as we were about to ascend with our first client, putting us in serious financial straits. We were left with no decision except for to begin from ground-up once more. We combatted despite everything, with tirelessness and a “never say pass on” disposition. Fortunately, we were rescued in one way or another whenever we encountered a roadblock. We conducted a series of bridge rounds, which resulted in our raising close to 1 MN USD and the participation of more people in support of our cause. Additionally, we were blessed with an incredible core team that supported us through thick and thin and assisted us in achieving our goals.

The Arabia Times: How do you see the company changing in two years, and how do you see yourself creating that change?

Padmakumar Nair: The money raised in the Series A round is being used to grow the team and improve the go-to-market plan for foreign markets in the near future. The fund is being used to strengthen our presence in the European and US markets. The company’s infrastructure and scale will need to alter to accommodate the additional target markets. Ennoventure is also extending its capabilities to enable a range of services such as warranty management, registration, traceability etc. in addition to product authentication & engagement. Additionally, we are focusing on sustainability and recycling initiatives- reducing carbon footprint by replacing paper instruction booklets with electronic leaflets and educating consumers on effective product recycling and reuse actions.

The Arabia Times: What benefits are your clients getting from Ennoventure Inc. in this competitive world?

Padmakumar Nair: Ennoventure seeks to build technology-powered experiences that enable a brighter future for all life, every day. By utilising cutting-edge technological solutions there are a lot of benefits for our clients. Its most current anti-counterfeit products include the following distinguishing features:

  • Invisible signatures that can be embedded throughout the product package,
  • Require no process change or CAPEX,
  • Easy to use at consumers’ end i.e., scannable using a smartphone.

The Arabia Times: Would you like to say anything else to our viewers?

Padmakumar Nair: “True success is measured not only by a person’s abilities or circumstances, but also by their unwavering spirit of grit and determination. Notwithstanding difficulties and mishaps, the steady quest for our objectives separates us. At Ennoventure Inc., we are of the opinion that the indomitable human spirit is the source of greatness. It is only through unwavering perseverance that we are able to turn dreams into reality.

Grit is the fire that ignites our passion and gives us the strength to overcome challenges. Our unwavering commitment is fueled by determination, which gives us the strength to overcome obstacles. Even when the path appears to be unsure, it is this combination of resilience and unwavering focus that propels us forward.

We recognize the power of grit and determination in the pursuit of excellence and innovation. We are aware that failures are stepping stones to success and that every obstacle is an opportunity for development. We forge new paths, triumph over adversity, and redefine what is possible collectively with unwavering resolve. There is no limit to what we can accomplish if we remain persistent and have unwavering faith in ourselves.”

Connect with Padmakumar Nair on LinkedIn