Sharan Oberoi

 Forty Under 40 Winner 2017: Founder, managing partner and CEO, OnActuate Consulting, Age 39

Before launching OnActuate Consulting, Sharan Oberoi spent many years being parachuted into jobs as a consultant to deal with operation systems that were not working correctly.

“There are so many projects that are going sideways,” said Oberoi, OnActuate’s founder, managing partner and CEO. “A lot of people talk a lot and deliver less.”

Experiencing those IT problems first-hand motivated Oberoi to pick his own team, recruit clients and build products that wouldn’t fail.

Oberoi founded OnActuate in 2012. It began “as a service for a commodity trading firm that was on a buying spree,” he said. “They would go and buy out a couple of companies every quarter.”

The parent company wanted its own systems in place but it would struggle to streamline the technology across multiple companies and platforms.

By 2016, the company had a staff of 130 in offices in Toronto, Vancouver, Singapore, Seattle and Delhi, and several major international clients such as Volvo, Nissan and McDonald’s.

OnActuate is what is known as a global systems actuator, providing IT services to companies around the world. Oberoi explains: “We help organizations like McDonald’s and big commodity traders to refocus their attention on their core business and leave the technology to us.”

The company’s systems are designed to manage a company’s inventory and supply chain.

McDonald’s, for example, was struggling with its digital transformation. “We were able to showcase some of the smart solutions to them and were able to talk them into working with us,” Oberoi said. “We started small with McDonald’s but now we’re doing quite a bit of stuff.”

He takes pride in his company’s 100% client retention rate and his ability to attract and keep workers in Vancouver’s competitive tech sector. 

“If you look around in the Vancouver tech community, everyone is struggling to find people,” he said. “We don’t have that problem. To be able to use the scale that we have, to be able to use our strength to deliver the technology solutions is a big strength.”

Birthplace:

New Delhi

Where you live now:

Vancouver

Highest level of education:

Degree in computer science engineering

Currently reading:

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

Currently listening to:

KiSS Radio

When you were a kid, what you wanted to be when you grew up:

Doctor

Profession you would most like to try:

University professor

Toughest business or professional decision:

Moving from being an employee to an independent contractor, to hiring the first employee. I am glad I made the leap

Advice you would give the younger you:

Start early

What’s left to do:

Loads. Have to continue OnActuate’s expansion to Australia, Europe, Middle East and Asia and Latin America. Create OnActuate Foundation as a leading initiative for improving lives, eradicating poverty by providing education and better health care that’s accessible to everyone

Join us to celebrate the 2017 Forty under 40 Awards on January 23, 2018, at the Vancouver Convention Centre. For tickets and event info visit http://www.biv.com/events/40under40 

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