Thursday, March 2, 2017

Syngene, Herbalife Jointly Open Research and Development Centre in Bengaluru

Herbalife Ltd, a US-based firm that sells weight-loss shakes and nutritional supplements, announced the opening of its first research and development (R&D) centre in India in Bengaluru in partnership with Biocon Ltd’s research services arm Syngene International Ltd. The new centre will house a group of Syngene scientists who will work closely with Herbalife on product development, sensory evaluation and testing among other services.
The 3,000 sq ft facility is located inside Bengaluru-based Syngene’s campus and is Herbalife’s fourth such lab worldwide. Its new lab in the city will house a group of Syngene scientists who will work closely with Herbalife on product development, sensory evaluation and testing and scientific content writing among other services.
The nutrition R&D lab will house a group of Syngene scientists that will work for Herbalife Nutrition on various research and development projects. Herbalife will work closely with Syngene in the areas of R&D in the field of nutrition - including product development, sensory evaluation and testing, scientific content writing pertaining to nutritional products and supplements, project management, formulation development, analytical service, stability study and other related services - and ensure that the right systems and processes are followed to deliver nutrition products for Herbalife India. 

Dr Manoj Nerurkar, chief operating officer, Syngene International Ltd, added, “This is our fifth dedicated centre and second for nutrition research. We see this partnership as an endorsement of Syngene’s scientific capabilities to deliver innovative solutions across a wide industry segment and look forward to working closely with Herbalife Nutrition to support their R&D requirements.”
“At Syngene, we are committed to developing products that enable people to lead healthier lives. We see many synergies in this association and feel it is natural for us to partner with Herbalife Nutrition to help them in their quest of advancing better nutrition,” said Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, managing director and chairperson of Biocon.
Syngene has set up similar exclusive R&D centres for other global biotechnology firms in the past, including Amgen Inc, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Abbott Nutrition and Baxter Inc.
“I think when we look at these we need to basically cater to a prospect of expansion,” Mazumdar-Shaw said when asked why Syngene was partnering with Herbalife to set up an exclusive R&D centre. The partnerships are decided based on understanding where the capabilities and expertise are and not by a bidding process, said Manoj Nerurkar chief operating officer of Syngene.
India is among the top five markets for Herbalife, which has for long been at the heart of a battle between US activist investors Bill Ackman and Carl Icahn, with Ackman saying the company is an illegal pyramid scheme guised as a multi-level marketing firm and Icahn challenging his claim.
When asked on a question on the numerous lawsuits and complaints filed against the parent company in regards to side effects on using some of the Herbalife products, Ajay Khanna, vice president and country head of Herbalife International India Pvt Ltd said, "we have just began our partnership with Syngene and in the next few months bring out products made for the Indian market. The lawsuits and complaints filed were against the parent firm and no such problems have been witnessed in India so far".

The nutraceutical market in India is poised for tremendous growth. Currently the market is about Rs 2.2 billion (Rs 220 crore) and is expected to grow to Rs 6.2 billion by 2020. This is a further commitment to the consumers in India to have the R&D lab so that we can bring products from our global portfolio much faster into the country,” said Khanna.
Khanna  said a substantial amount of investment had gone into setting up the facility in Bengaluru, however did not divulge on the actual amount invested in the facility.

Micromax Introduces New Range of Window and Split Air Conditioners


Reinforcing its vision to be a leading consumer electronics company, Micromax Informatics, India’s leading mobile brand, today introduced a new range of Air conditioners, to strengthen its presence in the AC market. This will be the first year to see a complete line-up of ACs from Micromax, after it successfully introduced ACs as a pilot project last year in June 2016. The range comprises of 07 split ACs and 01 Window AC right at the onset of the peak summer season in India.

To begin with, the focus markets will be the top 10 states (Punjab, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Delhi, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Telangana and Tamil Nadu) where Micromax has established a strong distribution with over 4000 sales touch points and backed it up with 400+ service centres to ensure strong after sales service support. In addition to the traditional retail touch points, the products will also be made available through leading E-commerce websites, in the months to come.

Commenting on the launch, Rohan Agarwal, Vice President, Consumer Electronics, Micromax Informatics Ltd. said, “We are bullish on the Indian air conditioner market and have invested heavily in building a strong product portfolio, a robust distribution network to ensure wide presence and best-in-class service experience.  Being a dominant consumer electronics player, Micromax enjoys a strong brand equity and our success in these segments has given us the confidence to foray into a new product category. The key differentiators for our ACs is the local innovation that we have built as per consumer feedback (100% copper two-way drainage, turbo cooling etc.), along with the right implementation. We believe that as a brand we are very well entrenched to grow this category.”

He further added, “At Micromax, we realize that service is of utmost importance in order to connect with the last mile. We are introducing the Micromax Home Assist application for our AC and TV consumers to help facilitate, raising any enquiry or complaints with utmost ease and faster redressal. We want to replicate the same success that we have witnessed in the LED TVs segment and achieve a double digit market share over the next 3 years in AC segment as well.”

Capital Float Nominated for Emerging Small Business Lending Platform of the international LendIt Industry Awards

LendIt, the world’s largest Fintech conference-recently announced - that they have selected Capital Float as a finalist in the Emerging Small Business Lending Platform category. Capital Float is India’s leading digital lending platform to SMEs. The Emerging Small Business Lending Platform finalists were chosen on their capability to demonstrate the greatest potential to impact the future of small business lending in the world. Capital Float is the only Asian representative in the category.

Capital Float was nominated as a finalist out of hundreds of applicants worldwide and by more than 30 industry experts who judged finalists representing innovation, emerging talent and top performers. Capital Float will compete for top honors within its award category at The LendIt Awards Ceremony on March 7 at the LendIt conference in New York City.

“Having been on the front lines of emerging and later stage Fintech companies for the past five years, we wanted to unveil our own best of the best industry accolades,” said Jason Jones, Co-Founder, LendIt. “We were positively overwhelmed with the high number and high caliber of entrees. These finalists represent some of the most innovative companies that are radically improving financial services through technology.”

“We are thrilled to be shortlisted for the LendIt Awards. This nomination is another feather in our cap of being the leading digital lending platform in India. LendIt offers a great platform for us to showcase our disruptive products to more than 5000 of our industry peers spanning across 40 countries,” said Gaurav Hinduja, Co-founder and MD, Capital Float. “We are proud to represent India at such a prestigious forum. This further boosts our confidence to continue innovating and serving the SME market,” he adds.

CASHe Disburses 1 Crore Loans Per Day and Aims At 30 Crore Disbursements by March 2017

Aeries Financial Technologies Pvt. Ltd., a fin-tech company promoted by serial entrepreneur and private equity investor V. Raman Kumar, today announced that CASHe, India’s fastest loan giving app for young salaried professionals is now disbursing loans well over 1 Crore per day in less than a year of operations. CASHe now processes an average of 450 loan applications per day for young salaried professionals. CASHe is now India’s leading and most preferred fintech company in the personal lending space.

Launched in April 2016, CASHe offers loans based on a combination of Big Data Analytics and proprietary Artificial Intelligence based algorithm, the Social Loan Quotient, which enables loan disbursal within 8 minutes.

“We have seen a fantastic response to our loan products with a month-on-month 45% growth in customer base and 60% growth in disbursal value in the past few months,” said V. Raman Kumar, Chairman, Aeries Financial Technologies Pvt. Ltd. “Our loan disbursements now stand at 1 crore per day and we have achieved a significant milestone of processing over 450 loan applications on a daily average – all this within a year of setting up our operations. We are now well set to disburse loans worth 30 crores for March 2017. CASHe has embarked on a tremendous growth trajectory to achieve a loan disbursement value of Rs 100 crore for the month of December 2017. We have leveraged innovative technology along with our proprietary Artificial Intelligence based algorithm platform, the Social Loan Quotient, to make loan disbursal hassle free for our customers, leading to over 70 percent of them returning for fresh loans.” he added.

CASHe provides hassle-free loans with its app enabled documentation and loan disbursal/repayment process. Powered by its industry-first algorithm driven credit scoring platform, The Social Loan Quotient (SLQ), CASHe quickly determines a user’s credit worthiness by using multiple unique data points to arrive at a distinct credit profile of the customer. SLQ is transforming the traditional credit rating measurements thereby providing immediate loans to the under-served young professionals who are kept out by traditional credit rating and banking systems. CASHe is completely automated and requires no personal intervention and no physical documentation. The average time taken for a loan to be disbursed is about 8 minutes, subject to proper submission of all documents.

Nearly 1/5th Wallet Transactions on FreeCharge Driven by Online Partners

Amidst increasing digital payments push and awareness amongst consumers, FreeCharge has announced that it is witnessing a major chunk of its transactions coming through online partners. Nearly 20% of the wallet transactions happening on the platform are on either one of the online merchant partners. This is closely followed by offline partnerships wherein Fuel and Food are the top 2 categories driving adoption and transaction.

In the offline space, fuel refilling and dine-out or food orders are driving growth for the firm. On a percentage basis, Fuel right now comprises 39% of the daily offline merchant transactions while the same figure for the food category stands at 29%. This is basis the fact that both these categories drive high repeat usage on the part of the customer and builds the digital transaction habit for the consumers.

FreeCharge had recently announced its plan of on-boarding 1 million merchants in the next 12 months already has a lot of online partners and will increasingly focus on offline space to meet the target. The company has already on boarded nearly 18,000 petrol pumps in the top 20 cities for example and plans to cover petrol pumps associated with HPCL, IOCL and BPCL pan India in a period of 2 months.

With an increasing focus on the less cash economy, FreeCharge is increasingly focusing on both online and offline partnerships to enhance its digital footprint in the payment space. Few of the prominent online merchants for the wallet firm include irctc, foodpanda, swiggy, bookymyshow, redbus, zomato amongst many others. In the offline space the prominent partners include McDonalds (West and South), Pantaloons, Shoppers Stop, Café Coffee day, Barista, Heritage Fresh and many others.

Speaking on the development, Sudeep Tandon, Chief Business Officer - FreeCharge said, “Partnerships with varied offline and online merchants form the bedrock of FreeCharge acceptance in the payments landscape. FreeCharge has witnessed a great response from the tech savvy online consumer base in terms of adoption and repeat usage. With the increased push on digital economy, we have recently seen the same happening in the offline space as well, which is a very promising trend for us. Our teams are working towards the goal of making FreeCharge the default payment app on the consumer's home screen and we wish to achieve this very soon.”

Snapdeal, Truecaller Partner to Make Your Shopping Experience Frictionless

Snapdeal, India’s largest online marketplace, has partnered with Truecaller, one of the leading communication apps in the world to enhance consumer experience by integrating Truecaller Priority in the company’s IVR and order confirmation numbers. Customers with Truecaller app installed on their mobiles will be able to easily identify and filter IVR or delivery verification calls when shopping on Snapdeal.

Any calls received by users who have placed an order on Snapdeal, while be clearly marked as ‘Snapdeal Order Team’ or ‘Snapdeal Delivery Team’, and color coded in purple; thus, assuring the users that the call is important and from a reliable source, not spam.

Jayant Sood, Chief Customer Experience Officer, at Snapdeal said, “We are very pleased to bring the Truecaller Priority feature to our platform. It will help reduce a key friction point in the delivery process; ensuring that our customers don’t miss out on any important calls from Snapdeal, and also increase the daily rate of deliveries for us by increasing the call completion rate.” 

Besides boosting customer satisfaction and ensuring that customers are always in the know about the status of their product, this feature will also reduce the rate of “no response” calls for Snapdeal.

“We constantly strive to enhance the user experience through safe and efficient products. With Truecaller Priority, Snapdeal ensures enhanced efficiency in its user communications while users get to know that call is critical and for relevant reasons. We are confident that such seamless experience will add immense value to both sides” said Arun Krishnan, Director, Strategic Partnerships at Truecaller. 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

239 Students from 19 Design Institutes Participate in India Aerospace Design Challenge 2017

Honeywell has announced the winners of the fourth edition of India Aerospace Design Challenge, the annual competition sponsored by Honeywell to attract and develop talent in India for its growing Aerospace industry. The company announced the winners on India’s National Science Day, celebrated each year to mark the discovery of the Raman effect by Indian physicist and Nobel Laureate Sir Chandrashekhara Venkata Raman on February 28, 1930.

The 2017 Honeywell India Aerospace Design Challenge drew the participation of 239 students from 19 design institutes across India. The students were charged with designing a user-friendly, enhanced situational awareness solution for Aerospace communication, navigation and surveillance. Akhil Patel and Harmeet Singh from the Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati, and Harshika Jain and Salil Parekh from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, were announced winners of this year’s contest at the award ceremony held at the Honeywell campus in Bangalore.

“I’m delighted to meet the brilliant design students at the Aerospace Design Challenge 2017. They are India’s future for building human-centered software industrial solutions for our country,” said Dr. Akshay Bellare, vice president and general manager of Honeywell Technology Solutions, India, Honeywell’s technology development and engineering arm. “As Honeywell transforms into a software industrial company with about half of its 23,000 global engineers working on software, we know that digital and physical solutions will become more and more connected to change the way we live and work. Domain knowledge will become very important, and we’re committed to nurturing Indian engineering talent and building Make in India solutions to support rapid growth in the country.”

“I’m very excited about winning the Honeywell’s fourth Aerospace Design Challenge,” Akhil Patel said at the award ceremony.  “Moreover, it is a great opportunity for students like us to showcase our design capability and how our designs can help improve existing processes and create solutions to tackle present-day challenges in India.”

Started in 2014, the Honeywell India Aerospace Design Challenge is an annual contest for college students to design innovative solutions addressing specific needs of the Indian aviation industry. More than 650 students from 20 institutes in both aviation and design fields have participated in the yearly competition.    

Three-Day Mega Science Fair at GMHP School, Jakkur to commemorate National Science Day


To commemorate National Science Day, Agastya International Foundation organized a three-day mega science fair at Government Model Higher Primary (GMHP) School, Jakkur Village in Bengaluru from February 26 – 28, 2017. The students from GMHP School displayed science models to explain complex scientific concepts through simple experiments – learnt as part of the Honeywell Science Experience program at the school.
Through its uniquely scalable, hands-on teaching-learning method, the program aims to foster child and teacher participation in experiential learning, and boost science education. To promote science education among other children, the students from GMHP School demonstrated close to 100 scientific phenomena, including solar and lunar eclipse, seasonal changes, and concepts such as pressure and volume relationship, and the formation of insulin with protein chains, at the mega science fair. More than 3,000 children, including students from nearby schools, attended the science fair and experienced the Honeywell Science Experience center and mobile science lab at the school. 
  “Peer-to-peer learning instills confidence, improves communication, and helps students understand complex scientific methods in a more agile way. As we run one of the largest hands-on science education programs for economically disadvantaged students, it becomes crucial for us to introduce unique ways to nurture creativity and boost confidence. We hope that peer-to-peer teachers will catalyze a movement across India.” said, Ramji Raghavan, Founder and Chairman, Agastya. “Support from partners like Honeywell India will continue to be critical to foster a new generation of science professionals in the country,” he explained.
Munirajappa, school principal, said, “I have seen tremendous change in the way students collaborate and learn at the science center. I think it fills a critical gap in our infrastructure and provides a great platform for students who want to acquire an in-depth understanding of science.”
Vikas Chadha, President, Honeywell India, said, “The Honeywell Science Experience not only enables students to understand complex scientific concepts, but helps them realize their natural potential for learning and prepares them for leadership and proactive community engagement.” He explained, “Being one of the world’s leading technology companies, Honeywell understands the importance of STEM education and its impact on the global economy.”
Launched in August 2016, the Honeywell Science Experience reaches more than 48,000 students and 600 teachers in Gurgaon, Delhi, and Bangalore through 11 unique experiential science centres, 10 mobile labs, and 1,100 student mentors.

Shire’s Rare Count Campaign to Personalize the Global Impact of Rare Diseases

Shire plc has announced the launch of “Rare Count” in honor of Rare Disease Day and the 350 million people worldwide living with rare diseases, which equates to nearly one in 20 global citizens.1 It is estimated that 50% of rare diseases begin in childhood. The campaign, open for all to participate at www.shire.com/RareCount, highlights the under-recognized prevalence of rare diseases.
Speaking on the launch of the campaign on World Rare Disease Day, Vineet Singhal, Country Head, Baxalta Bioscience India Pvt. Ltd (now part of Shire) said, “Awareness about Rare Diseases in India is very minimal and there is a dire need to create awareness on the importance of timely and appropriate diagnosis that can help make difference in the lives of patients suffering from rare diseases. The Rare Count campaign in India and Globally will aim to reach out to such patients through social media platforms. As 66% of the 180 million Internet users in urban India regularly access social media platforms, we strongly feel this campaign will help in reaching out to rare disease patients. At Shire we are committed to these patients and put their wellness first.”
The Rare Count campaign applies the “one in 20” rare disease statistic to calculate the potential number of contacts in a user’s social network who could be living with a rare disease.  The shareable result represents the user’s “Rare Count” and underscores the potential personal impact of rare diseases. Anyone can go to www.shire.com/RareCount to calculate and share their individualized Rare Count through Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn. For every person who participates, Shire will contribute $1, up to $10,000 to each of the following umbrella patient advocacy groups focused on rare diseases: National Organization for Rare Disorders, Global Genes and EURORDIS (Rare Diseases Europe).
“At Shire, we believe that that every patient counts, no matter how rare the condition, and we are focused on championing for people living with rare diseases to ensure their distinct unmet needs are met,” said Philip J. Vickers, Ph.D., Global Head of Research and Development at Shire.  “Correct and timely diagnoses remain key challenges in the rare disease community. Our commitment extends beyond our innovative drug pipeline to our unwavering efforts to increase rare disease awareness with the goal of improving the diagnosis pathway for rare disease patients.”
Today, there are about 7,000 known rare diseases.1 While rare disease communities are small, the overall prevalence of rare diseases may be higher than the public recognizes. Since low awareness can contribute to the ongoing challenges facing people living with rare diseases, public education is critical. Shire is timing The Rare Count campaign to coincide with Rare Disease Day, an annual awareness day focused on educating the public about rare diseases and their associated challenges.
In addition to the Rare Count campaign, Shire employees at sites around the world are honoring people living with rare diseases by leading or participating in awareness-raising activities.
“Rare Count”
Shire’s Rare Count campaign underscores Shire’s commitment to raising awareness of rare diseases. The campaign uses a social media calculator to apply the “one in 20” rare disease statistic to a user’s personal network, thereby estimating the potential number of contacts in their network who could be living with a rare disease. The calculator and results can be shared via Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  The landing page also includes options to customize results by country. The personalized, shareable result represents the user’s “Rare Count.”

Next Three Years Will See Indian Inc Investing More Time, Money and Skills In Cloud

VMware, Inc.,  a global leader in cloud infrastructure and business mobility, today announced key findings from a VMware-commissioned study that identifies key CIO priorities in India for the next three years. Conducted by Kantar IMRB, the study suggests how IT/ Data security is a key challenge organizations face in the mobile cloud era and how most organizations surveyed are keen to adopt cloud computing to enhance business agility and efficiency – hence information security and cloud services will have maximum impact on businesses in the next 3-5 years.

As per the research findings, even though organizations are progressively looking for a modern business environment, they are concerned about having a proper security environment in place owing to the open nature of the Internet and increasing cyber threats. 86 percent of organizations see their IT budget increasing over the next 3 years and 80 percent of businesses are willing to invest time, money and skill on cloud services.

The study surveyed IT leaders and decision makers from a number of Indian companies across various verticals, ranging from medium-sized enterprises to very large organizations. Each respondent was interviewed via a structured questionnaire on their business and IT priorities for their organizations in the next three years, including:
·         What they would like to see from IT vendors
·         The role of cloud computing in their businesses
·         Their outlook on their organization’s IT budget spend

Key insights:

·  Companies are willing to invest time, money and skills on cloud services and currently the adoption of the public cloud is high compared to that of private/hybrid cloud. Only basic data such as emails, messaging services, CRM are stored on the public cloud owing to data security concerns
o    Study findings reveal that very large enterprises (80 percent), large enterprises (83 percent) and medium enterprises (82 percent) are likely to invest in private cloud. Likewise, a high majority of them are also keen to invest in public and hybrid cloud.
o     
o    While business and performance is a key priority, the study indicates IT security is now a major concern and has gone up the business priorities list
o    87 percent of respondents in the IT/ ITeS/ Telecom sector; 55 percent of respondents in the manufacturing sector; 64 percent in banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI); 53 percent in government/public sector/defence; and 65 percent from other services agree IT security is amongst the top business priorities.
o     
·  Apart from CIO’s focus on IT operational efficiency and improvement of IT agility, managing security and compliance risk is gaining prominence as a top IT priority for companies
o    61 percent of respondents from BFSI and 57 percent of respondents from IT/ ITeS/ Telecom rank managing security and compliance high owing to the nature of their business.
      Despite increase in IT budgets in very large enterprises, CIOs are unhappy as the budget is either insufficient nor aligned properly
o    Findings also indicate that respondents from the government (70 percent) and BFSI (67 percent) feel that budget for security should increase by 25 percent over the next year.
·  Losing customers’ trust and public disclosure of sensitive data are considered as main concerns by organization
o    87 percent of organizations’ security team want to have business data safe from breaches and secure against cyber-attacks
o    Organizations are extensively looking at new technology trends like anytime, anywhere any device access to business applications, enterprise mobility etc., to provide greater work flexibility to their employees

“With nearly 25 percent of all IT workloads being managed in the cloud today, and the number expected to double by 2021, it is evident that the traditional on-premises IT environment is undergoing a profound change. Today, CIOs play an extremely essential role in their organization’s IT, and it is of utmost importance to have enterprise data available always – anytime and anywhere while tightly secured,” said Arun Parameswaran, managing director, VMware India. “This study brings to light what CIOs should look out for in the next three years where new security approaches are needed as data center infrastructures increasingly move to the cloud.”

The survey was conducted from May to June 2016 across five industry verticals including Manufacturing, Banking and FSI, Government/ PSU / Defense, IT/ ITeS/ Telecom and Other services (Media, Healthcare, Retail & other Professional Services) covering Pan-India locations. Inputs were gathered from over 150 respondents across a variety of companies ranging from medium-sized to very large organizations. All respondents surveyed were IT leaders and decision makers in their respective organizations with designations that included CIO or an IT Head.

Each respondent was interviewed via a structured questionnaire on their business and IT priorities for their organizations in the next three years, including:
·         What they would like to see from IT vendors
·         The role of cloud computing in their businesses

·         Their outlook on their organization’s IT budget spend

Now ACT Internet Speeds Upto 5x in 6 Months at No Extra Costs

ACT Fibernet, India’s largest non-telco ISP and 3rd largest ISP (internet service provider), has announced upgradation of its existing internet plans for customers in the city of Hyderabad.  

At a similar upgrade in October 2016, ACT Fibernet had increased its entry level plan A-Max 410 from 1 Mbps to 2 mbps and is now taking it to a new level of 5 mbps with an exceptional download and upload limits of 60 GB each, making it the only internet package in the market to be offered at such a phenomenal value.

Likewise, A-Max 650 has been upgraded to 25Mbps versus its previous offerings of 10Mbps with new upload and download FUP of 100 GB at no extra costs. A-Max 1050 is being upgraded to 60 Mbps from speeds of 40Mbps with new upload and download FUP of 200 GB again at no extra costs.

With over 70 per cent market share in Hyderabad, ACT Fibernet is Hyderabad’s largest and favoured internet service provider that bring the best internet plans coupled with incredible speed and reliability to its customers. The new offerings will enable access to high speed and uninterrupted internet services to meet entertainment, business and utility services requirements.

Speaking on the newly introduced plans,  Bala Malladi, CEO, Atria Convergence Technologies Pvt Ltd commented, “In Line with our philosophy of offering exceptional speeds and download limits that empower our customers – we are upgrading our plans to offer the best speeds and FUP limits at exceptional value to our customers. With the ultimate objective of liberating our customers from speed and data inhibitions, our new plans will open a whole new world of possibilities such as HD and 4K movie downloads.“

Ducati Corse Races Ahead of the Pack with Accenture and Machine Learning

Ducati Corse, the racing department of Ducati Motor Holding, a world leader in sports motorcycle manufacturing, is working with Accenture to integrate Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence technologies into the testing of its MotoGP racing bikes.

Ducati Corse wants to make testing its race bikes faster, cheaper and more effective. Accenture Analytics, already Official Digital Partner to the Ducati Team racing in the MotoGP World Championship, has lately been working with them to create an intelligent testing approach with a bespoke analytics engine. Integrated Machine Learning technologies mean that the more data that enters the system, the more configurations are available for testing with increasingly accurate performance predictions. Data visualization tools designed for an intuitive user experience will allow testing engineers to interact with insights, tweaking them at any point to create a new perspective on configurations and race times. This will provide more results from fewer on-track testing sessions, saving the time, money and effort previously required for testing, and creating bikes that become smarter with every test run.

“There are 18 MotoGP tracks, and to make sure our bikes perform to their limit, we need to test as many configurations and scenarios as possible,” said Luigi Dall’Igna, Ducati Corse General Manager. “So far, we’ve seen excellent results in the lab with the Accenture solution. The ability to use existing and new testing data will help us choose the optimal configuration for our bikes. This innovative tool will make our testing a more intelligent process, helping us get the best performance from our bikes, whatever the weather or the track.”

Using data from up to 100 IoT sensors on the bikes and existing testing data, the Accenture solution will allow team engineers to create new perspectives by simulating and assessing bike performance under a range of conditions. By applying advanced analytics and machine learning techniques, simulated results based on data from previous tests run on real-world tracks will allow engineers to learn from and act on the data to optimize bike configurations for any MotoGP race. All of this intelligence is delivered at new speeds through an intuitive dashboard, enabling new dialogues and collaboration across the team. More potential configurations than ever before can then be tested, maximizing the benefits of on-track testing and gaining competitive advantage for race day.

“With this solution, Ducati Corse can operate an intelligent testing program to help deliver better race results,” said Marco Vernocchi, EALA Lead of Accenture Analytics, part of Accenture Digital. “By simulating and monitoring a motorbike’s performance under a vast array of track and weather conditions, we’ve been able to apply machine learning integrated with IoT sensor data, to help minimize the time, expense and effort of traditional on-track testing. Ultimately, we hope this innovative solution will help the Ducati Team stay ahead in every race they compete in.”

To date, around 4,000 sectors of race tracks and more than 30 different racing scenarios have been analysed, with a wider roll-out of the solution expected. In testing, data such as engine running parameters, speed, revs and tyre and brake temperatures are collected, and the Ducati Team will use this to plan, prepare and test for MotoGP races.

Marcello Tamietti, Connected Transport lead in Accenture Digital’s IoT practice, noted: “Early results of this solution are extremely promising. The power of collating data from the bikes and earlier races allows us to compute several potential outcomes per setting, starting a new dialogue about how to get the smartest, fastest bike on the track. Test engineers can use real insight to alter bike configurations according to conditions, which could transform the way the Ducati Team operates its entire testing apparatus, adding new value to on-track, intelligent testing.”

Seclore’s New ERM Solution Release Adds Data-Centric Security Solutions

Seclore, the leader in Enterprise Rights Management (ERM), has announced the latest release of its flagship data-centric security solution. New capabilities offered provide a more seamless experience for both the sender andrecipient.

The most impactful update in the new release is the ability to edit protected documents natively in Mac. Seclore for Mac 2.0 packs in powerful new features which make the enterprise even more secure and compliant – while reducing the burden on both IT and end users. The skyrocketing number of enterprise Mac users are now empowered with the same level of data-centric security as their Windows counterparts.

“Existing Seclore users that use the Mac platform will now be empowered to do much more than just apply rights and view protected files. They can now open, edit, save, and print protected Office documents in their native Office 2016 apps running on Mac,” statedAbhijit Tannu, CTO at Seclore. “Our goal with this release is to decrease end user friction and increase adoption by enabling users to leverage the entire universe of features provided by Office when working with their protected files on Mac devices.
Additional features in the latest version of Seclore Enterprise Rights Management, include:

·         Enhanced user on-boarding - With innovative password free file access, Seclore’s pioneering user on-boarding process isnow even faster and easier. Users can open protected files immediately after a one-step email verification – no password required.
·         Upgraded user interface - Seclore’s award-winning secure browser-based viewer now allows viewing of multiple files simultaneously. Combined with additional enhanced viewing options, agentless access is an effortless process.
·         Gain access through Google account - Further expanding on Seclore’s identity federation, users can now login into Seclore automatically through their Google account making access to protected documents even faster
·         Auto-discovery of permissions - Email auto-forwarding capabilities enable the ‘auto- discovery’ of those who need access to protected content, eliminating the need to manually grant permissions to users. Forwarding a protected email automatically transfers access permissions to all new recipients, making ad hoc use of rights management while emailing a breeze. Through this feature, unregistered recipients are registered automatically, eliminating the need for manual registration.

“Our newest features form an integral part of Seclore’s vision of providing easily adoptable data-centric security solutions to organizations,” said Vishal Gupta, CEO at Seclore. “With a relentless focus on reducing friction at both the sender and receipt stages of the rights management process, Seclore is leading the way in closing the remaining security gaps in organizations’ IT ecosystems.”

Persistent Systems Granted Development Rights by USAA Services


Persistent Systems has announced an agreement with USAA for development rights to a number of patented innovations currently in use by USAA related to security in financial services.

 USAA, a FORTUNE 500 financial services provider that serves members of the military and their families, has been an innovator in securing authentication and financial transactions through a process that extends beyond user passwords and security questions. The development and intellectual property rights granted to Persistent stem from innovations that USAA uses to identify and verify members, while also protecting their privacy. 

Through this agreement, Persistent will extend these technologies and address a growing market opportunity for digital security products and solutions in the financial services industry. Persistent will focus on authentication and security solutions based on concepts such as micro-trust, risk-aware, contextual, and personalization in conjunction with technologies related to biometrics, risk modeling, and dynamic proofing.

Sudhir Kulkarni, President Digital at Persistent Systems says, “Digital transactions in financial services are growing at a rapid pace. This agreement is at the intersection of security and digital transformation in financial services, and it brings together USAA’s patented security technologies with our product engineering DNA to strengthen our focus on the how of digital.”

Gary McAlum, USAA’s Chief Security Officer says, “The financial services industry is highly connected, and we want every link in the chain to be strong from a security perspective. That’s why we’re excited to work with Persistent Systems to see patented innovations we use today developed into products that can benefit others in the financial sector. Just like we say to our members, we are stronger together than we are apart.”