Freshworks Strengthens Technology Leadership with CIO and CISO

Customer engagement software provider appoints industry veterans Prasad Ramakrishnan and Shivanath Somanathan to key management positions

Freshworks, a global provider in customer engagement software, has bolstered its top management with the appointments of Prasad Ramakrishnan as chief information officer and Shivanath Somanathan as chief information security officer. These appointments are the latest of several top leadership hires by the SaaS leader.

Ramakrishnan will be responsible for scaling the technology infrastructure within Freshworks to adapt to the company’s rapid growth. He will drive the implementation and management of internal business systems, business intelligence, analytics, and IT infrastructure. Previously, he served as CIO at HotChalk and Veeva. Both enterprises were early adopters of Freshservice, Freshworks’ IT Service Management offering.

“Prasad brings a unique perspective from the customer's angle, having used our product through its stages of maturity. He offers an invaluable customer perspective when making impactful technology decisions,” said Girish Mathrubootham, CEO, Freshworks. “Shivanath’s vast experience in the ever-evolving security domain will hold us in good stead as we move on to the next phase of growth at Freshworks.”

Ramakrishnan holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a diploma in business administration (marketing) from Madras University (Chennai, India), a master’s in computer applications from Anna University (Chennai) and an MBA in global management from the University of Phoenix.

“Freshworks is a pioneer in the new generation of SaaS companies that is redefining the way SMBs and enterprises look at SaaS. The ease and agility of deploying and maintaining the suite of Freshworks products represent a compelling value proposition and demonstrate Freshworks’ IT leadership,” Ramakrishnan said. “Having been associated with Freshworks products and having seen the power of the engagement platform, I am excited to be a part of the Freshworks family and look forward to delivering ‘wow’ moments to all of our users.”

Somanathan, who brings more than two decades of industry experience spanning the information assurance, business security, and cyber resilience sectors, most recently served as CISO for India operations with Tata Communications. He will be responsible for information security, governance, risk and compliance related to product development and production infrastructure.

Somanathan holds a master’s in cyber law and security from National Law University in Jodhpur, India, and a degree in B. Tech-Electrical & Electronics Engineering from the University of Calicut. He also earned postgraduate diplomas in international business from Pondicherry University and digital business from Columbia University (New York).

“As a unicorn and a next-gen SaaS firm in the making, Freshworks is best-positioned to create a value differentiator in the market through its adaptive security posture. It not only caters to the data protection and privacy requirements of our clients but also meets the regulatory and statutory obligations for the markets they serve. I’m excited to create and sustain a model where security is forged at the speed of business,” Somanathan said.

Earlier, Freshworks hired David Thompson as Chief Marketing Officer, Suresh Seshadri as Chief Financial Officer and Suman Gopalan as Chief Human Resources Officer.

The company recently closed a $100-million funding round led by Sequoia and Accel with participation from CapitalG.

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