Timeline of How Global Firm People Shores Landed in Clarksdale

December 19, 2018

By Michael Banks / The Press Register

September 2017

Abhishek Goel, founder and CEO of the tech firm Dasceq in Dallas, visits the People Shores location in San Jose, Calif., and meets with the leadership team out there as they make plans to open the first center in the United States.

Goel is impressed by what he sees and shares his thoughts with his good friend, Parveen Chawla, who is the wife of Dinesh Chawla, CEO of the Chawla Hotel Group, which owns 18 hotels in the Delta, including three in Clarksdale.

January 2018

Dinesh Chawla posts a message on his personal Facebook page on Jan. 20. It reads:

“Headed to California again. This time Silicon Valley. I’m shooting for the stars on this one. I hope to bring a project to the Delta that could provide hundreds of high-paying jobs to our area. Sounds like wistful dreaming. But I don’t want to sell our area short. Remember that we convinced a big-time family and hotel company that we could put a luxury hotel in a 17-acre sorghum field. I’m hoping lightning strikes twice. Good people live in Mississippi and we are very humbled to have this opportunity to pitch and develop.”

Jon Levingston, executive director of the Clarksdale/Coahoma County Chamber of Commerce, remembers reading the post one night just as he was getting into bed.

“I just thought he was full of hot air,” Levingston said. “I just chuckled to myself. The absurdity of a Silicon Valley-based company locating in the Mississippi Delta. I just rolled over, went to sleep and forgot about it.”

On Jan. 23, Chawla follows up with another post that reads, “Great trip to Silicon Valley. Got to make a presentation to a technology group that definitely wants to come to Mississippi and develop a 200- to 300-person high-tech workforce over the next two years. Big names and money are associated with this project. Kudos to Parveen Chawla for connecting everyone and pushing this. (I’m the wingman).”

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