These are unprecedented times.
We have had a few pivotal moments in our company’s history and the economy. Yet, nothing we have experienced thus far comes even remotely close to what we are experiencing today. I wish I could pull out a user manual and share how we are supposed to feel; or gaze at a crystal ball and predict how things are going to pan out in the coming days.
But this isn’t business as usual.
I have been speaking extensively with other CEOs, investors, and economists over the past few weeks. The situation has been worsening at an alarming rate and no one knows how events will unfold in the coming days, let alone weeks and months. In fact, data from the US shows that the percentage of people who feel optimistic about the economy has dropped from 50% to about 33% in two weeks and it continues to dip. The one thing everyone seems to agree to is that the effects of the pandemic will last for a long time to come.
I have been very impressed by how our group companies have stepped up in their own ways during these uncertain times to help humanity across the world fight the pandemic. InMobi Marketing Cloud, in partnership with other companies, has been making public service announcements and directing consumers to credible sources of information including the World Health Organization. TruFactor is providing geo-mobility intelligence to researchers in government and academic organizations across the globe to help estimate disease spread, assess policy changes and measure economic impact. Glance has been working on a contact tracer for assessing the risk of infection for consumers, and also using the lock screen to disseminate trustworthy information on how to deal with the pandemic to almost 100 million people.
I see a similar microcosm within the InMobi Group universe where our various offices have been helping each other during this hour of need. Our offices in Japan and Korea shipped masks and other supplies to our China office when the latter was locked down. Now that China has sprung back resolutely, our China office is now helping other offices globally on how to deal with the pandemic.
It is undeniable that the financial impact of the pandemic is going to be huge. InMobi Group too is feeling the impact, albeit at a much lower scale than most other businesses. Our geographical spread - 50% of our revenue comes from North America, and another 25% from China - and the sequential nature of the outbreak has helped cushion the impact for the InMobi Group. But flat is the new growth today - every business needs to ensure it survives first before it can thrive.
The impact of the pandemic has been hard on everyone - emotionally and financially; personally and professionally. As business leaders, we need to take some very difficult decisions that are tough and compassionate at the same time. At InMobi Group, our guiding principle has been one of shared celebration and shared sacrifice. In order to manage our finances better while minimizing the impact on as many people as possible, we have revised our compensation structure for our employees, effective April 2020. Under this revised structure, employees will receive a portion of their salary in the form of stock, instead of cash. This stock component starts at 10% of an employee’s salary, with the percentage increasing at the leadership levels.
As the pandemic and its impact on our lives and the economy is showing us, we can’t rule out anything as we don’t know what the future holds. However, we will continue to find ways to minimize the impact on as many people as possible.
I am acutely aware that these are stressful times for everyone, as we worry about the well-being of our family, parents, children, friends, and colleagues. I would like to thank each one of you for showing extraordinary resilience, courage and optimism in dealing with the situation, while continuing to bring your whole self to work, albeit remotely.
I am confident that all the steps we are taking, along with our investment in employee wellness, connect and collaboration programs will help us emerge much stronger on the other side of this pandemic.
Take care and keep the faith.
Founder and CEO, InMobi Group