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Sridhar Vembu *94

Sridhar Vembu
Electrical Engineering
AdventNet Inc.
5200 Franklin Dr
Pleasanton, CA 94588, USA

Ph.D: Electrical Engineering, 1994

Thesis: Information Theory Without Ergodicity Assumptions: Some New Results

Advisor: Sergio Verdu

Biography

Sridhar Vembu obtained his B.Tech in Electrical Engineering from IIT, Madras, and PhD in Electrical Engineering in 1994. He served as a systems design engineer in Qualcomm from 1994-96, focusing on CDMA for satellite communications, where he had the privilege of working with some of the leading minds in wireless communications.

In 1996, driven by a passion to play a role in the emerging technology industry in India, he reinvented himself as a software entrepreneur. Along with friends and his brothers, he co-founded what became AdventNet where he has served as CEO since 2000. Privately held AdventNet has grown to over 600 employees, with all the growth funded internally, without requiring outside investment. AdventNet is a diversified software company, with a portfolio of successful products. In 2005, AdventNet introduced the Zoho.com suite of online office productivity applications, and has emerged as an early leader in this nascent market. Driven by the learning needs of his son diagonsed with autism, AdventNet has created Jambav.com, an interactive learning and entertainment site for kids.

AdventNet is pioneering a new approach to higher education in India, combining class room instruction with hands-on experience. This is helping under-privileged students in India enter the world of technology. AdventNet's approach fits Peter Drucker's thesis that a fundamental reinvention of higher education is needed, one led by employers, even in the American context, where college costs are rising inexorably. Sridhar believes AdventNet's experiments in this respect offer a market-based alternative to the increasingly costly higher education system.