SILICON VILLAGE

Friday, September 7, 2018

DLF Shopping Malls unveils India’s first Phygital Application ‘Lukout’


DLF Shopping Malls, the country’s biggest and largest physical market place today announced the launch of India’s first ever retail Phygital application ‘Lukout’. The initiative is part of the brand’s New Retail journey to redefine the shopping experience in India. With the launch of Lukout, DLF Shopping Malls will enter a new realm of digitization, thereby strengthen its foothold in new cutting-edge technologies and retail solutions. This will empower DLF’s vision to reengineer the very definition of ‘New Retail’ experience, diminishing the boundaries between online and offline retail world.

The Lukout app is a one stop solution that offers highly personalized proximity based engaging content in terms of latest looks, latest trends, real time location based offers while providing conveniences like One touch Parking payment, one touch valet, one touch concierge along with having its own social network for millions of consumers.  For Retailers, the app provides a disruptive platform to enable channel-based consumer targeting and further allow brands to host their virtual stores fronts on Lukout to enhance discoverability & device proximity campaigns to target consumers via big-data powered analytics dashboards.   

DLF Shopping Malls has been focusing on strategic partnerships and has gravitated this approach to become first movers in the industry to enable seamless integration of the online and offline shopping culture in the country, which is christened as The New Retail Phygital era. Some of these partnerships include – Global e-commerce and technology giant, Alibaba Could for providing big data, artificial intelligence and high-powered computing capabilities and Firefly (a JV of Airtel & Vodafone) for providing ‘We Connect’ – one of country’s best in-mall Wi-Fi experience compliant under the most recent future ready GDPR regulations. In addition to this, the brand has also partnered with the German IOT major Minodes – a Telephonica Next company to deploy big- data powered deep consumer analytics across all the retail properties of DLF Shopping Malls, building data rich analytics for highly granular user behavior, heat maps, dwell times, life time repeats & real time in-store conversions. To realize a unified interconnected ecosystem for retailers & consumers, DLF Shopping Malls has associated with Hogarth WorldWide to develop the first ever Phygital application ‘Lukout’ for providing real time personalized hyper-local experiences for its millions of consumers. 

Pushpa Bector, EVP and Head, DLF Shopping Malls, said, “At DLF Shopping Malls we are constantly innovating to meet and exceed the expectations of the evolved consumer. We have pioneered and embarked upon our ‘New Retail’ journey based on the premise of our Phygital strategy, spearheaded by our endeavors of collaborating with strategic partners. This initiative will be instrumental in creating new benchmarks for Indian retail industry while offering unprecedented experience for our consumers”.

Harshavardhan Chauhan, Head, Central Marketing & Phygital, DLF Shopping Malls said, “We are excited to launch the industry’s first ever Phygital product, leveraging on cutting edge technology across IOT, big-data, real time analytics & proximity personalized marketing to realize our New Retail vision for seamlessly connecting the physical & digital ecosystems. Lukout will empower India’s top brands across DLF Shopping Malls to embark this New Retail journey while enabling us to disrupt experiences for millions of our consumers as part of our phygital strategy”.

Accenture Ranks No. 1 on Thomson Reuters Index of World’s Most Diverse and Inclusive Companies


Accenture has been named the top company on the Thomson Reuters Diversity & Inclusion Index, which recognizes the 100 most diverse and inclusive companies in the world, according to Thomson Reuters ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) data. The Index, established in 2016, is one of the most comprehensive measures of workplace inclusion and diversity practices.

“At Accenture, our commitment starts at the top with our board and extends across every dimension of the company,” said Pierre Nanterme, Accenture’s chairman and CEO. “We embrace our rich diversity as a ‘culture of cultures,’ which is all about our 449,000 people around the world living our shared core values, while bringing our own unique skills and experiences to make the maximum contribution to our clients and our business.”

“Inclusion and diversity are fundamental tenets of our culture, core values and business. We believe that an inclusive environment will make us stronger, smarter and more innovative,” said Rohit Thakur, managing director and lead human resources, Accenture in India. “This award further reaffirms our inclusion leadership, and we are grateful to our people and their rich diverse backgrounds which helps us serve our clients and our communities better.”

Among the actions Accenture has taken to further its progress toward a more inclusive and diverse workplace, which Thomson Reuters considered in the Index, are: 

Creating a diverse board of directors. Accenture’s board of directors is diverse in terms of its geographic and gender representation, with people from six countries across four continents and four women, including its lead director.

Advancing workplace equality. The company set a goal of having women comprise 50 percent of its global workforce by 2025. Today, women comprise 41 percent of the company’s workforce and 45 percent of new hires.  

Developing talent. The company invested US$935 million in learning and professional development last year, including substantial investments in re-skilling to help its people stay relevant in key areas such as cloud, artificial intelligence and robotics.

Committing to transparency. The company provides its workforce data in many countries. For example, Accenture was the first professional services company to voluntarily publish comprehensive workforce demographics – including gender, ethnicity, persons with disabilities and veterans – in the United States.

To compile the Index, Thomson Reuters assessed publicly available data for more than 7,000 publicly traded companies around the world. The companies were measured on 24 separate metrics across four key categories: Diversity, Inclusion, People Development and News Controversies. The Index was then calculated by weighing each metric based on importance in the market and how each company compares with its peers.

The Thomson Reuters ranking is the latest in a series of inclusion and diversity recognitions for Accenture, which is committed to ensuring that all of its people – regardless of age, ability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity and expression, religion or sexual orientation – have the opportunity to succeed. Among the dozens of lists on which the company has been included in the past year are: Corporate Responsibility Magazine’s 100 Best Corporate Citizens globally; the Disability Equality Index in the U.S.; DiversityInc’s Top 50 Companies for Diversity in the U.S.; the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index; Nikkei Top 100 Companies for Women in Japan; The Times Top 50 Employers for Women in the UK; and Working Mother & AVTAR’s 100 Best Companies for Women in India.

“At Thomson Reuters, we understand that focusing on total societal impact is fundamental to driving long-term financial success,” said Patsy Doerr, global head of corporate responsibility and inclusion at Thomson Reuters. “Creating the workforce of the future means building diverse teams which attract the best and brightest from around the world. The Diversity & Inclusion Index helps investors and analysts identify the companies that are getting this right, helping them to make investment decisions that align with their values and the bottom line.”

Audio Longe Opens their Second Luxury Retail Store in B'lore India



Audio Lounge, retailers of the world’s most technically perfect and high-end audio equipment, will open a new store offering pure listening pleasure fordiscerning music lovers in and around Bangalore. The store, located at Taj West End, will range some of the most desirable audio brands available including Avantgarde, Bel Canto, Boulder, Crystal Cable, Nagra, Ortofon, Sennheiser, Siltech, SME, Spendor and YG.

On live demonstration, both unique and elegant,Avantgarde high-end 2-channelhorn loudspeakers will also be unveiled for the first time ever in India.A stunning visual appearance is matched with a convincing sound performance that will radiate effortlessly into a room, handcrafted in the best German tradition.  It is sheer magic to the ears. Purists are invited to come exclusively to Audio Lounge to experience this phenomenon for themselves.

Experienced experts will always be on hand at Audio Lounge to tailor bespoke exquisite audio systems for the home to suit every budget and lifestyle, so music enthusiasts can immerse themselves in the most beautiful sound they have ever heard, in the manner they choose.

www.audiolounge.in

Discover #ChangeFromWithin with Kanthari


Kanthari, established in 2005 provides leadership training programs for visionaries who have overcome adversity and who are keen to drive ethical social change. 

Based out of Trivandrum in Kerala, Kanthari aims to help people overcome their circumstantial situations by fostering their talent. Founders Sabriye Tenberken and Paul Kronenberg are the pioneers who are set out to make a difference in the world. 

In 1998, Sabriye and Paul started the first school for the blind in Tibet. This school formed the foundation of Braille Without Borders, an organization that empowers blind people to take their lives in their own hands. In 2005 they co-founded kanthari in Kerala, South of India.

For its tenth anniversary, kanthari TALKS is coming to Bangalore for the first time. Kanthari TALKS, is the culmination of their intensive social leadership training program in different fields such as environmental protection, alternative education, women empowerment and building an equal and inclusive society.

Kanthari TALKS is a platform where kantharis educate, entertain and humble people with their stories, dreams and action plans for a better society. 23 change makers from 13 countries present their captivating life stories of resilience and hope. They will talk about inspiring solutions for global and local problems. Speakers come from India, Argentina, Kenya, Nigeria, Cameroon, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Tunisia, Tajikistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Thailand.

The Talks are an inspiration for millions who aspire to become change-makers to build a better society.

Kanthari TALKS will take place on November 24-25, 2018 in St John’s Auditorium in Bangalore. 

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Excellon Software’s DMS implementation at Royal Enfield Completes 5 Years Successfully


Excellon Software, earlier in this decade, successfully implemented its Excellon 5 Dealer Management Software Suite for Royal Enfield’s dealership network, which has completed five years milestone.  Excellon Software continues to extend the Support and Solution for Excellon Dealer Management Software Suite to its valued Customer - Royal Enfield and its dealerships across the Globe.  Today Royal Enfield is only Indian Motorcycle which is tagged as Oldest Global motorcycle brand in Continuous production and well accepted globally. It’s large customer following making it the Brand of choice in the premium bike segment across the world Royal Enfield is a Subsidiary of Eicher Motors India limited with excess in revenue of US$ 1.0 Billion.

Excellon Software as a Software product company is renowned for its cutting-edge yet simple-to-use Next Generation sales, distribution, and service management software suite. The company’s product portfolio encompasses an end to end dealer management system including after-market management solutions, sales and distribution management, and service management software, dynamic enough and adaptable to next generation enhancements.

Today, the automotive industry is undergoing a 360-degree paradigm shift from having a product-driven approach to a more customer-centric approach. A lot of emphasis is put forward into seamless customer experience, dealer performance management as well as to provide flawless support and service. The competitive markets and customer demands are pushing the manufacturers to offer the world class product support, service and customer experience.

One of the OEMs to understand the importance of a comprehensive Dealer Management System and utilize its potential to satisfy the needs of the customers, is Royal Enfield.  Royal Enfield deployed a comprehensive Dealer Management system partnering with Excellon Software across India and later expansion to new geographies such as North America and in parts of ASEAN Countries.

Royal Enfield Gear leverages Excellon DMS to increase brand awareness among its consumers by branding the Royal Enfield gears like jackets, headgear etc. sold through its distribution network company outlets, exclusive stores and franchise outlets thereby, increasing the brand recall & awareness among its customers.

Indian Chambers of Commerce Hosts IP500 Protocol Summit in Bengaluru


Indian Chambers of Commerce (ICC) along with IP500 Alliance hosted the “IP500 Protocol Summit” in Bengaluru to explore the usage of IP 500 methodology to enhance the IoT based building automation management and smart city applications. The event was inaugurated by Tapan Chattopadhyay on behalf of  Dr. Rajeev Singh, Director General of ICC, followed by a welcome speech by Helmut Adamski, Chairman, IP500 Alliance. The event saw the presence of some notable names of the industry including officials from Indian SmartCity Missions, Honeywell, Microsens, Wipro, Bosch, Bajaj Electronics Ltd. and many more. Representatives from Govt. bodies, research institutes, OEMs also attended the one-day event.

“Over the past few years, building automation and controls market has been expanding at a significant rate. With the government itself coming up with the concept of smart cities, the new generation of India is driving the next wave of technological innovations. As the world’s fastest growing economy, we are in dire need of a standard solution. IP500 technology is a wireless network platform that simplifies the servicing and maintenance of smart buildings, commercial places as well as smart cities,” said 
Tapan Chattopadhyay.

“The market opportunity in India is endless at this moment. We joined hands with ICC for this event to highlight the potential of IP500 technology. With a diverse scope for application in different sectors, we aim to make as technologically advanced as any other high-tech cities in the world. We are looking to collaborate with the major players to address together the challenges in smart cities, commercial buildings and Indian railways and airports,” commented Helmut Adamski, Chairman, IP500 Protocol, while addressing the audience.


“We couldn’t think of a better venue than Bengaluru as it is the Silicon Valley of India. The city is also home to the major influencers of the building automation market,” he added further.


"Keeping in line with IP500 alliance's commitment to the Indian market, the India Chapter is working closely with the industry to create a sustainable ecosystem of manufacturers, systems integrators and customers. We will provide compete support to all the stakeholders to ensure easy and seamless adaptation of the products on this wireless platform" said Gulshan Aghi, President, IP500 India Chapter.


The Indian building automation market is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 12.5% until the year 2023. The government and private bodies are transforming cities, based on a smart information layer backed by IoT as well as sensors. India is ready for the next step, with making more technology-enabled choices.

eScan Marks 25 Years of Success in the IT Security Industry in India


eScan, one of the leading Total security solution developers, turned 25 this year. To commemorate this milestone event, eScan hosted 'Mega Event' for its PAN India partners in association with KK software Pvt Ltd. They also introduced eScan Anti-Virus Total Protection with 10 Users for the SOHO section. The event was held at Raddison Blu Hotel, New Delhi which witnessed around 100 partners from all over India.

During the event, eScan showcased and educated the partners about its latest products and new solutions for IT security. They also announced beneficial channel schemes that will benefit eScan's privileged channel partners with good value proposition and profits. Further, channel partners were given awards and recognition to motivate and keep the partners committed to build, develop and sustain long-term and healthy relationships with us.

eScan launched a special offer for the partners in association with KK Software Pvt. Ltd. The offer includes various trips to Switzerland, Pattaya and Goa to be claimed by the partners on purchase of certain number of eScan Anti-Virus with Total Protection and eScan Internet Security Suite box products. eScan values its relationship with the channel partners and with this scheme, rewards their commitment for their contribution to make the company reach the end users.

"On behalf of the entire eScan team, we would like to sincerely thank everyone who helped us reach this milestone. The last 25 years have been filled with challenges, hard work, dedication, innovation and lot of success. All these years as industry leaders, we have always pushed our limits by reinventing and consistently delivering the best of class security solutions. We promise to continue this momentum to stay ahead in the game so that our partners as well as our customers can get the best that the industry has to offer," said Mr Sunil Kripalani, Senior Vice President, Global Sales and Marketing, eScan.

RK Balu, General Manager, eScan, "eScan today boasts of worldwide reach for its solid R&D and customization abilities. Our channel partners play a very significant role in the many milestones we have achieved in the last 25 years. We believe that with the new IT security solutions that have we launched, it will help us immensely to get into a much bigger growth in the coming years."

eScan Anti-Virus Total Protection, designed for home and small office users, is a comprehensive Anti-Virus and Content Security Solution that provides complete protection to your computers against malicious content and security threats, such as Ransomware, Spyware, Adware, Keyloggers, Rootkits, Botnets, Phishing and more. eScan's range of security solutions are certified by Global testing bodies like AV Test, AV Comparatives' Real World Test & Real Protection Test and VB 100 Test and many others.

HGS Announces Opening of First Customer Service Center in Florida


Hinduja Global Solutions (HGS) (listed on NSE and BSE in India), a global leader in business process management, today announced it is opening its first customer experience center in Florida. The center, located in Jacksonville, FL, will bring more than 350 new career opportunities in the first phase of expansion, starting in September, with a total of 500 new job opportunities over time. This expansion is due to continued growth of the company’s domestic business, driven by a combination of providing additional services to existing clients and recent new business wins.

HGS is aggressively growing onshore across industries; growing its North American employee base by more than 40% in the last 12 months. This rapid growth has resulted from both the acquisition of new clients and the expansion of contact volume and lines of business across HGS’s existing customer base – a direct result of HGS’s consistent operational excellence.

“Jacksonville is a vibrant, growing community with an educated and skilled workforce that can add value for our business and our clients,” said Tim Schuh, HGS President, North America. “We are excited to bring economic growth and job opportunities to the region and look forward to welcoming highly talented customer service people to the HGS team.”

The new center will be located at 6680 Southpoint Pky, Jacksonville, FL and will officially open its doors in late November. HGS will start recruiting inbound customer service associates for the new center in September. These positions are ideal for applicants who enjoy problem solving and helping people within a supportive learning environment.

HGS provides professional training, is committed to career path development and commonly promotes from within. HGS also offers health benefits, 401K matching, loyalty programs, celebration awards, and incentive opportunities. Join our team to find out why so many of our leaders have been with HGS for more than 10 years. To learn more and apply for a position, visit: careers.teamhgs.com.

For 40 years, HGS has been providing an intelligent solution approach to meet clients at their stage in the transformation journey. From traditional voice contact center services and web self-service, chat, text, and social customer service to back-office support and robotic process automation, HGS provides a best-in-class experience to help customers drive profitable engagements across a variety of vertical segments including healthcare, financial services, media, and telecommunications.

Inditrade Begins Micro Finance Operations in Karnataka


Inditrade (erstwhile JRG) (BSE: 532745), a leading player in the agri-commodity financing and micro finance business, today launched its Micro Finance operations in the southern state of Karnataka (through its wholly-owned subsidiary Inditrade Microfinance Ltd.).

The announcement was made by Sudip Bandyopadhyay, Group Chairman of Inditrade (JRG) Group of Companies.

“We strongly believe that Karnataka has enormous potential for growth of small women entrepreneurs with its focus on industrialization, which requires ancillary and peripheral services. As a focused micro finance player, we are well equipped to provide service in an effective and efficient manner in Karnataka” said Bandyopadhyay.

Inditrade Microfinance has started operations in Karnataka with its first branch in Bellary district.  It plans to open another 14 branches by the end of this year in two more districts.

Karnataka tops the list of states disbursing micro finance with INR 7,903 crore in fiscal 2018 as per the Inclusix 2018 by Crisil. Karnataka was also the top state in terms of loan amount disbursed at INR 2,219 crore in Q1 FY 2018-19 as per the MFIN Micrometer. 

Supporting the vision of the Government on Digital India, the company has also launched a completely digitized process.  Elaborating further on this, Mr. Bandyopadhyay said, “Easy and quick access are the cornerstones for the success of any micro finance initiative.  With the country already moving towards becoming a digitized economy, we plan to leverage technology in fulfilling our aim of reaching our customers and catering to their requirement for finance in the most effective & convenient manner.”

This is the first time in the industry that a completely digitized loan disbursement and collection process will be implemented including client prospecting, eKYC, tracking GPS locations, credit check, decision to disburse loan, money transfer to bank accounts.

Bandyopadhyay further pointed out that the demand for credit in the unorganized sector in the country is higher compared to the supply. The company plans to create a loan book of approximately INR 500 crore by the end of the current fiscal with approximately INR 80 crore coming from Karnataka.

Business Highlights as on August 31, 2018

* INR 164 crore disbursed
* Over 50,000 registered customers
* Presence in five states – Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Odisha

Persistent Systems Acquires Herald Health, Transforming Healthcare Data Overload into Clear and Actionable Insights


Persistent Systems has announced the acquisition of Herald Health, a start-up created to transform the data overload swamping healthcare professionals into clear and actionable insights. Born out of a hackathon sponsored by the Digital Innovation Hub (iHub) at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in 2015, Herald Health has developed a nationally recognized product bringing intelligent workflows and care delivery processes needed for digital transformation in healthcare. Herald Health has earned multiple awards for its innovative design, including 1st place in the Department of Health and Human Services Provider User-Experience Challenge. 

Rahul Patel, GM Healthcare Solutions at Persistent Systems, “This acquisition further strengthens our IP portfolio in healthcare that includes our co-innovation work with leading university health systems and research organizations, as well as solutions that we’ve built jointly with our partner ecosystem. This kind of innovation by Herald Health is driving change in healthcare. It’s not enough just to collect data, you have to give providers user-friendly tools and actionable insights in real time.  Herald Health has proven that when you do this in even one hospital, hundreds of doctors and thousands of patients can benefit.”

Brad Diephuis, MD, Co-founder Herald Health, “When I began my clinical training, I was both impressed at how much data modern medicine can generate on patients and shocked at how few tools physicians were given to effectively process all of that data.  At Herald, we're continually discovering how pervasive this problem is – not just for doctors, but for care coordinators, operations personnel, and hospital leadership - and building innovative solutions to make use of data in real time on the frontlines. With Persistent’s resources and technical expertise, we're looking forward to scaling these solutions to more hospitals and patients.” 

Adam Landman, MD, CIO Brigham and Women’s Hospital, “There is an immense opportunity to dramatically improve our patients’ and providers experiences by leveraging digital health technologies. The Brigham Digital Innovation Hub is thrilled to be able to support early-stage ideas, like Herald Health, that have the potential to positively impact patient care not only at our own hospital, but across the country and around the world.”

The transaction takes place through the company’s US subsidiary Persistent Systems, Inc.

Dream11 Partners with CleverTap to Power the Next Wave of Fan Loyalty in the Fantasy Sports Industry



CleverTap, the cutting-edge mobile marketing automation solution provider, today announced that Dream11, India’s biggest sports gaming platform, is extensively using its comprehensive data-driven user engagement suite to further consolidate its position in the competitive fantasy sports market.

Ever since its inception in 2012, Dream11 has scaled rapidly to become the fantasy sports platform of choice for over 40 million users in India. Catering to a diverse target of sports fans with evolving sensibilities and sacrosanct loyalties, Dream11 aims to complement the entire sports consumption experience across both web and mobile channels. CleverTap’s AI/ML-powered platform is helping Dream11 craft personalized, contextual, and timely engagement campaigns to drive higher app monetization and retention.

To create personalized campaigns, Dream11 leverages CleverTap’s automated segmentation capability that uses RFM (recency, frequency and monetary) analysis to segment its user base into 10 distinct segments. With RFM, Dream11 is able to discover its champions, loyal users, and those that are at-risk or hibernating. By keeping track of user activity and their monetary values, they are able to run targeted campaigns to reduce at-risk and hibernating users over time while also running loyalty programs to keep their champions and loyal users  coming back. 

Using CleverTap Journeys, Dream11 can now visually build highly effective push notification campaigns based on specific historical and real-time in-app user actions or inactions. Dream11 is also leveraging the power of rich push notifications by embedding their “Dimaag Se Dhoni” campaign slogan as an accompanied sound in their notification. Not only does this help their notifications stand out, but also adds an interesting dimension to the entire user experience.

Rahul Mirchandani, VP of Customer Retention at Dream11 said, “We are fast changing the way a sports fan consumes sports by providing them a highly immersive second screen experience. Playing on Dream11 requires the application of both creative imagination and rational thinking. In such a scenario, converting infrequent users into repeat customers through effective and timely mobile marketing campaigns is of utmost importance.” He further elaborated, “CleverTap’s automated segmentation engine helps us harness user-level behavioral insights to craft engagement strategies that drive higher monetization and retention. Using their advanced marketing automation platform, we believe we can extensively tap into the sporting interests and loyalties of sports fans and provide a great product experience.” 

Sunil Thomas, CEO of​ CleverTap said, “The rapid evolution of fantasy sports as an engagement and monetization opportunity has been remarkable. Dream11’s rise in terms of scale as the go-to fantasy sports platform in India has been noteworthy.” He further elaborated, “Our advanced automated segmentation engine helps Dream11 identify different user segments that need to be engaged with across devices through personalized and contextual notifications. Also, these have to be delivered at the right time to maximize chances of users coming back to the platform to strategically make their teams. We are thrilled to be powering the growth of India’s largest and most loved fantasy sports platform and are excited to see what lies in store next.”

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

SBI and its Employees Donate Rs 10 Crore to Kerala Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund


State Bank of India Managing Director (Retail and Digital Banking) Parveen Kumar Gupta today handed over a cheque of Rs.8 Crore to E P Jayarajan, Minister in-charge of Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF). This includes Rs.5 crore raised by the employees of State Bank of India (SBI) collectively and a further contribution of Rs.3 crores by the Bank, to make the total contribution amount to Rs. 10 crore in the Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF), including the initial contribution of Rs 2 crore to CMDRF.

On handing over the cheque to E. P. Jayarajan, Minister in-charge of CMDRF, P. K. Gupta, MD – Retail & Digital Banking, SBI said, “We are grateful to our employees for their overwhelming response and appreciate their contribution for coming forward in large numbers to help the citizens of Kerala in restoring their lives. The bank stands by the people of the state in this critical situation.”

The Bank has 1245 branches and 3243 ATMs in the state. Over 15000 employees of the Bank across the state voluntarily undertook on-the-ground relief measures by providing basic supplies like food & grain, medicines, drinking water, clothes, to the distressed citizens of the state. The Bank managed to normalize services for its customers by making all Branches and most of the ATMs operational immediately. To meet immediate cash requirements of the flood affected people, over 2800 Cash@POS machines were also deployed by the Bank.

SBI also announced special term loan for repair and renovation of homes destroyed by the flood to help the home loan borrowers of the bank to restore their lives. With zero processing fees, the loan will be offered to the applicants at 1year MCLR rate of 8.45% per annum.

The bank has also announced waiver of various charges and fee on banking transactions in Kerala state for a period of time on the following:

1.   No processing fee for any loan relating to flood relief measure.

2.   No charges for issuing duplicate passbook, ATM card, Cheque books

3.   No late payment fee on EMI

4.   Waiver of all charges on remittance to CMDRF (including NEFT / RTGS remittance from other banks)

5.   No charges on non-maintenance of minimum balance from proceeds of relief fund provided by Govt. and agencies to be put on hold. If any such charge is recovered, the same would be refunded.

Apart from the above, bank has also taken below relief measures to support the flood affected people:

1.   Xpress Credit to the existing account holders with relaxed norms (for one month’s consumption)

2.   Individuals who have displaced and lost personal documents can open small accounts with only photograph and signature / thumb impression.

3. The Bank has opened a dedicated “Help Line” desk at its Local Head Office to assist clarify queries by flood affected customers.

4. The Bank has already taken necessary steps for implementation of SLBC directives for providing various reliefs by restructuring/rescheduling existing loans of flood affected customers under Agri, SME segments and also Housing Loans etc.

Lenovo Strengthens its Focus on the SMB Segment in India

Lenovo, the leading global PC and Smart devices brand, today unveiled the new ThinkPad E480 laptop for Small and Medium Businesses (SMBs) and start-ups. The product boosts of 11 grade military specifications and aims to enhance the workforce functionality.

The device is built to last and tested for durability. A comfortable backlit keyboard and the latest generation of touch fingerprint sensor makes for a smooth functioning laptop. With a 14-inch form factor and 1.75 kg (3.9 lbs) weight, the device is designed for the mobile workforce. It also comes with a slew of security features, sleek design, and standardized connectivity to enable a business what it needs to get ahead.

Commenting on the launch, Ashish Sikka, Director SMB, Lenovo India said, “The small and medium enterprises today have to embrace the latest technological trends with rugged and stylish laptops. With the launch of ThinkPad E480, we believe the SMB market will be able to keep their employees happy as well enhance their work productivity. At Lenovo, our objective is to increase productivity & reduce downtime for SMBs to focus on their core business objectives. With the launch of the ThinkPad E480 series, we have addressed their need for reliable, durable and secure laptops with easy maintenance.”

Highlights of the ThinkPad E480:

ThinkPad E480 (Prices starting from INR 32,999)– The powerful and aesthetically pleasing E480 is the thinnest laptop in its category. It provides up to 13 hours of battery backup with Quick charge technology and Dolby Advanced speakers. The new ThinkPad E480 also offers dual drive capabilities with SSD for performance hungry users.

It's reliable—as shown by the certificate of Military Grade Specification which includes series of rigorous tests it undergoes against shocks, drops, and other extremes —and secure, thanks to its optional Touch Type fingerprint reader and dTPM 2.0 chip. Additionally, the users and IT Managers can rest easy with the Lenovo sealed battery warranty, offering three-year coverage for non-CRU batteries.

08_Thinkpad_E480_Hero_180_degree_laying_flat_GS_Black_Metal02_Thinkpad_E480_Hero_Front_facing_right_GS_Black_Metal

·         Rich visuals - 14" HD (1366 x 768) with antiglare display and optional FHD IPS Display

·         Weight starting at 3.85 lbs (1.75 kg)

·         Warranty -  Up to 5 year on-site warranty

·         MIL spec tested

*The above prices vary basis the configuration. Prices are exclusive of taxes but do not include shipping or options and are subject to change without notice; additional terms and conditions apply. Reseller prices may vary. On-shelf rates may vary by geography and products may only be available in select markets. All offers are subject to availability. Lenovo reserves the right to alter product offerings, features and specifications at any time without notice. 

Four Out of Five Bangaloreans Have a Game Changing Business Idea, But Many Do Not Know Where to Network and Nurture Them


A majority of residents (81%) of the Silicon Valley of India, Bengaluru, said they have had at least one ‘game changer’ idea or invention, which could transform India’s work or leisure life, but one out of three does not know of a place in the city where they can network with like-minded people and mentors, and nurture their ideas.

The survey, conducted across Bengaluru with over 1,600 respondents, was commissioned by Samsung Electronics to gauge the issues faced by young budding entrepreneurs in shaping their ideas.

When asked what they thought defines the character and nature of Bengaluru, respondents pointed out to the city’s startup culture, innovation and R&D, technology business as well as its art and culture and heritage buildings, highlighting the diversity of the city, especially its millennials who are looking for interesting experiences in the city.

While a third felt the city’s heritage buildings and architecture, which is a mix of colonial and art deco buildings spread across the city, defined its character, almost four in five of the millennials said they rarely ever notice heritage buildings in the city when travelling within the city.

A sizeable 77% of millennials and 63% of non-millennials say they would want to restore heritage buildings and see them being converted into public spaces for art, culture and other events around technology and startups to hone the dreams of its residents. Most respondents felt the city currently has a shortage of such spaces.

These millennials and non-millennials alike want heritage buildings across the city to be restored, development of more art and culture venues in the city and greater number of parks and outdoor spaces to be created for recreation, again highlighting the fact that people of the city crave public spaces and care for its culture and heritage. These aspects are something that the rapid growth of the city as the technology centre of India may have ignored over the years.

“Bengaluru is India’s undisputed tech hub. As the information technology business has grown over the years, it’s also acquired the moniker of India’s startup capital. No wonder 81% of Bangaloreans say they have at least one game changing idea in our survey. But we found that while technology might be centre stage, the city has a heart. The city loves its art, culture, which is why they want to save heritage buildings and turn them into beautiful venues for concerts, museums and public spaces for art and culture. They also seek more venues for networking creative and business ideas they have,” said Mohandeep Singh, Senior Vice President, Mobile Business, Samsung India.

NXP Acquires OmniPHY, Paves the Way for Securely Connected, Self-Driving Cars

NXP Semiconductors N.V., the world’s largest supplier of automotive semiconductors1, has acquired OmniPHY, a provider of automotive Ethernet subsystem technology. The company’s expertise includes automotive Ethernet, a technology that enables the rapid data transfer required for autonomous driving. OmniPHY’s advanced high-speed technology, combined with NXP’s leading portfolio and heritage in vehicle networks, uniquely positions NXP to deliver the next-generation of data transfer solutions to carmakers. Financial terms of the transaction are not disclosed.

An automotive networking revolution is underway, driven by the need for higher data capacity and speed to meet the requirements of increasingly autonomous and connected vehicles. New advanced autonomous driving systems will require gigabit data speeds and beyond. Current plans for next-generation vehicles call for eight or more cameras, high definition radar, lidar and V2X capability, all of which generate steep data challenges for current car networks. These requirements, combined with the modern vehicle’s need to offload data to enable the new business opportunities of the connected car, will soon make terabyte levels of data processing commonplace.

“One of the vexing questions of the Autonomous Age is how to move data around the car as fast as possible,” said Ian Riches, Executive Director for Global Automotive Practice at Strategy Analytics. He further added, “Cameras and displays will ramp the number of high-speed links in the car to 150 million by 2020 and by 2030 autonomous car systems will aggressively drive that number to 1.1 billion high-speed links.” 

As the self-driving ecosystem works to deliver on emerging automotive data requirements, many have turned to enterprise networking solutions as a stopgap measure for testing. Yet long-term solutions will need to be automotive grade and of a size and weight that make their implementation feasible. NXP’s acquisition of OmniPHY, which has already begun to translate 1000BASE-T1 Ethernet for the automotive space, will give NXP a significant position in this rapidly evolving area.

“Our heritage in vehicle networks is rich and with our leadership positions in CAN, LIN, and FlexRay, we hold a unique viewpoint on automotive networks,” said Alexander E. Tan, Vice President and General Manager of Automotive Ethernet Solutions, NXP. “The team and technology from OmniPHY give us the missing piece in an extensive high-bandwidth networking portfolio.”

“Together with OmniPHY’s know-how, expertise and enthusiasm, we can accelerate the time-to-market for our 10-port Ethernet switch and PHY - SJA1110 and TJA1110, as well as drive standardization and innovation for the multi-Gbps solutions. This is an important achievement to position NXP Automotive as the leader in the autonomous drive market of the future,” shared Sanjay Gupta, Vice President & India Country Manager, NXP. “We are enthusiastic for the contributions to innovation and leadership in standardization for automotive networking technologies, that the Automotive Ethernet Solutions teams based in Hyderabad and Bangalore bring to the table,” he added.

OmniPHY is a pioneer in high-speed automotive Ethernet IP and automotive qualified IP for 100BASE-T1 and 1000BASE-T1 standards. Over its six-year history, it has worked with some of the largest consumer companies in the world and has developed competitive 1st-silicon-right solutions for emerging markets like automotive and industrial Ethernet. OmniPHY interface IP and communication technology along with NXP’s automotive portfolio will form a “one-stop shop” for automotive Ethernet. The companies’ technology synergies will center on 1.25-28Gbps PHY designs and 10-, 100- and 1000BASE-T1 Ethernet in advanced processes.

“We are very excited to join NXP – a leader in automotive electronics, for a front-row seat to the autonomous driving revolution, one that will deliver profound change to the way people live,” said Ritesh Saraf, CEO of OmniPHY. “The combination of our teams and technology will accelerate and advance the delivery of automotive Ethernet solutions providing our customers with high quality and world-class automotive Ethernet innovation.”

Juniper Networks Expands Partnership with Ericsson to Accelerate 5G Transformation


Juniper Networks, an industry leader in automated, scalable and secure networks, today announced it has expanded its 18-year partnership with Ericsson, a global leader in mobile networks, to deliver a comprehensive end-to-end 5G solution leveraging each company’s complementary portfolios. Together, the companies are now offering service providers a complete 5G transport network solution with single pane of glass visibility to manage the new requirements of next-generation mobile service delivery.

This deepened partnership aims to offer service providers a complete solution from radio to core for new-service delivery while managing mounting complexity. 5G is expected to be a game changer for the next generation of business and consumer services, but the increase in connectivity, network traffic and customer expectations will likely create new challenges for managing the mobile transport network in a cost-effective way. Evolving 5G use cases, including connected cars, AR/VR and 8K video streaming, and the associated 5G radio requirements needed to support these diverse applications can place additional demands across the network. Capacity, connectivity, latency, synchronization, reliability and security needs will all require tighter integration between the 5G radio, core and transport layers of an end-to-end mobile network.

To alleviate these challenges, Juniper’s expanded partnership with Ericsson greatly simplifies service providers’ 5G transformation by creating a tightly integrated solution that combines Juniper’s routing for next generation WAN services and IP transport, and Ericsson’s Router 6000 and MINI-LINK microwave portfolio for distributed, centralized and virtualized radio access. In addition, the solution leverages Juniper’s Unified Cybersecurity Platform to secure the entire 5G mobile infrastructure against ever-expanding and sophisticated threats. This comprehensive solution provides seamless connectivity from the radio cell site to the mobile core all unified under Ericsson’s management and orchestration solution, improving the performance, quality and ease-of-use of the entire 5G solution. The joint end-to-end 5G transport solution will be designed and built from day one with the intent of supporting exceptional 5G radio performance in a cost-effective way.

As part of this deepened partnership, Juniper will utilize Ericsson’s go-to-market for mobile opportunities and Ericsson will include Juniper’s solutions for edge, core and security as part of its end-to-end 5G transport portfolio.

Customers Using High-End Mobile Phones Ready to Pay More Rent in India; Suggests Data Study by Housing.com and Makaan.com


On an average, customers using a phone brand that costs anywhere above Rs 50,000 would be willing to pay 20% higher rent and the average budget is Rs 25,000 per month

How much money a person is ready to part with for rent is indicative of the lifestyle the person wants to maintain. The brand of the mobile phone a customer carries may reveal the amount of house rent they might be willing to pay. A recent study conducted by Housing.com and Makaan.com, indicates that customers using a phone that costs more than Rs 50,000 would be willing to pay 20% higher rent with an average budget of Rs 25,000 per month.

Data from the study suggest that on average, a user with a phone price bucket (PPB) of less than Rs 10,000 would be ready to pay anywhere between Rs 10,000 to Rs 17,000 per month depending on the city with an average budget of Rs 14,000 per month. The study indicates that customers who own a phone between Rs 10,000 - 20,000 would likely be willing to spend an average of Rs 16,300 per month on a rental home. Customers who spend between Rs 20,000 to Rs 50,000 on their phone would be willing to pay 27% higher than the previous category and their average budget would likely be Rs 20,700 per month.
  
Rental cost trends in key cities

Mumbai has the maximum average rental at Rs 23,000 per month which is 30% higher than Chennai that offers home at an average rent of Rs 17,600 per month.

New Delhi’s average rent closely follows Chennai’s and is at Rs 17,300 per month followed by Hyderabad at Rs 16,400 per month.

Kolkata, where average rental rates stand at Rs 11,400 per month is the most inexpensive location when it comes to rent among the major metros. Pune at Rs 13,200 per month is the next pocket-friendly rental hotspot.

45 - 47% of property seekers in Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad use a phone that is in the range of Rs 10,000-20,000 to search for homes on rent.  However, rental home seekers in New Delhi used a phone in the range of Rs 20,000-50,000 category.

About 49% of rental home seekers in Kolkata searched properties for rent with a phone that falls in the bracket of Rs 10,000-20,000. However, the next big bracket is of users who use a phone within Rs 10,000. 

Commenting on these trends Ravi Bhushan, Group Chief Product and Technology Officer, Housing.com, PropTiger.com, Makaan.com said, “High-end mobile phones are predictive of a person’s economic status. The choice of brand of phone and housing is indicative of the lifestyle one wants to maintain and a correlation between the two is intuitive. The study confirms that customers who spend higher on their gadgets will naturally do so for their homes as well but quantifies it for the first time.”

Tracking the trends and demand

About 85% of the demand lies within Rs 20,000 per month category. Statistics also show that maximum phone users searching for rental homes own a phone priced between Rs 10,000 to 20,000. The next big category is that of consumers who own phones worth Rs 20,000-50,000 followed by those who own phones priced less than Rs 10,000.

The average national rental budget is Rs 14,000 per month and the majority of Indians are looking for affordable rental properties.

Following the trend, about 47% of prospective tenants in tier II cities were looking for properties priced between Rs 10,000-20,000 per month. Just like other major metros barring Kolkata, most users have phones in the range of Rs 10,000 to 20,000.

About 22% of property seekers, nationally, are looking for homes priced within Rs 10,000 per month. Among major cities, Kolkata has maximum seekers within this range at 26% followed by Chennai at 25%, Pune at 23% and Tier II cities at 22%.

In almost all the cities, affordable to mid-priced rental homes are majorly in demand, and less than 2% rental home seekers are likely to want homes priced above Rs 50,000 per month. 

Within this category, Mumbai (2.44%), Hyderabad (2.42%) and Noida (2.19%) witness the most number of buyers in the premium category of rental homes. Data suggest that these property seekers are either iPhone users or Samsung Galaxy Premium users.

Common phones used for property searches include iPhone and Android phones such as Moto G4, Galaxy J Series, Acer Iconia, Lenovo Vibe, Honor, HTC Desire and other brands including Redmi, Oppo, and Vivo. The cities included in the study are Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Noida, Gurugram, Greater Noida, Pune.

India To Construct 100 Airports Worth USD 60 Billion: Prabhu


Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu said that India's aviation sector is one of the fastest growing in the world and would need as many as 100 airports in the next 10-15 years

India plans to construct 100 airports at an estimated cost of USD 60 billion (about Rs 4.2 lakh crore) in the next 10 to 15 years, Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu said Today. The country's aviation sector is one of the fastest-growing in the world and has recorded 50 months of double-digit traffic growth.

As many as 100 new airports would be built in the next 10 to 15 years for about USD 60 billion. These airports are to be constructed through public private partnership, Prabhu said. He said the government is also working on a cargo policy.

According to global airlines' grouping IATA, India is expected to overtake Germany, Japan, Spain and the UK within the next ten years to become the world's third largest air passenger market. 

Lockheed Martin Enters into Agreement with Tata to Produce F-16 Fighter Jet Wings in India


The wings of Lockheed Martin’s F-16 fighter jets will be produced in India, the American security and aerospace giant announced on Tuesday, in a major boost to the ‘Make in India’ initiative.

Maryland-based Lockheed Martin has entered into an agreement with Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) for the production of the wings. Lockheed officials insisted that the planned F-16 wing production to India is not contingent on India selecting the F-16 for the Indian Air Force. Lockheed has offered to move its entire F-16 manufacturing base to India. India is yet to make a decision on it.

Producing F-16 wings in India will strengthen Lockheed Martin’s strategic partnership with Tata Advanced Systems Limited and support the ‘Make in India’ initiative of the government, officials of the company said. “Building F-16 wings in India is a natural next step that builds on our successful partnerships with Tata on the C-130J [Super Hercules airlifter] and S-92 [helicopter],” said Vivek Lall, VP of Strategy and Business Development for Lockheed Martin Aeronautics. “This is a strategic business decision that reflects the value of our partnerships with India and the confidence we have in Tata to perform advanced defence manufacturing work,” Lall said.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

HDFC ERGO Partners with Manipal Global Education Services for the Talent Development Program


HDFC ERGO, General Insurance Company, India’s third largest non-life insurance provider in the private sector, announced the Talent Development Program, a one-year General Insurance training program for graduates, in partnership with Manipal Global Education Services (MaGE). The customised training program will involve on campus training, internship; which will be delivered at the Manipal Global Academy of BFSI Campus in Bangalore and on-the-job training at HDFC ERGO’s branches.

The course has been designed in association with Manipal Global Education Services to bring quality education, training and skills to aspirants looking for a rewarding career in the general insurance sector. This one-year full time training program will comprise of four months of training on-campus and two months of internship followed by six months of on-the job training at the branch offices of HDFC ERGO. Designed to up-skill prospective employees with the right domain knowledge in general Insurance, the course aims at enhancing the student’s business development skills enabling them to implement growth opportunities for HDFC ERGO. The first part of the HDFC ERGO General Insurance Training Program commenced on September 3rd, 2018.

Speaking about the launch, Parthanil Ghosh, Member of Executive Management & Group Head - Retail Business, HDFC ERGO General said, “As a company, we strongly believe in nurturing talent and providing growth opportunities. Our partnership with Manipal Global Education Services is a step in this direction and to build a talent pool in the insurance sector. Our Graduate Training Program is aimed at attracting aspirant graduates and training them for an excellent opportunity for a successful career with HDFC ERGO.”

Bimaljeet Bhasin, Vice President, Enterprise Business, Manipal Global Education Services (MaGE) said, “We are happy to partner with HDFC ERGO and glad that the company has the vision to continue investing in talent. Over the years, we have been supporting large number of organizations in the BFSI space helping them on-board highly skilled workforce. This engagement with HDFC ERGO extends our footprint in the insurance industry.”

On the successful completion of the program, students will be awarded a Post-Graduate Diploma in General Insurance and will be offered employment with HDFC ERGO. The aim of the General Insurance Training Program is to build sales officers of high calibre and create a workforce that matches the Company’s expectations and culture. 

AISATS Introduces Advanced RFID Based Real-Time Cargo Tracking System at Kempegowda International Airport


Air India SATS Airport Services Pvt. Ltd. (AISATS), India’s premier airport services company, has launched a new shipment tracking platform that uses Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology for its cargo handling operations at the Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru. AISATS will now be the first and only air cargo terminal operator in India to bring this RFID technology to the country for real-time and improved cargo tracking. This technological initiative is a collaboration between AISATS and its Singapore-listed joint venture stakeholder, SATS Ltd., which operates an unrivalled network of Gateway Services and Food Solutions in over 60 cities across Asia.

AISATS’ air cargo operations at Kempegowda International Airport have increased substantially, with a new peak of 97,486 tones being reached in the 1st quarter of the current financial year. This is a growth of 16.6% over the same period in the previous financial year. As more airlines commence operations and increase their flight frequencies at Bengaluru, air cargo volumes and movement at Kempegowda International Airport are expected to surge significantly in the near future.

With AISATS being the biggest ground handler at Kempegowda International Airport and managing two dedicated cargo handling centers, namely the AISATS Air Freight Terminal and the AISATS COOLPORT, the introduction of RFID technology will enable AISATS to undertake real-time cargo tracking for end-to-end visibility and faster turnaround. The RFID tracking system, capable of processing large quantities of cargo, will further bolster speed and accuracy, thereby making the cargo handling process more secure.

The RFID technology uses radio waves to transfer data from an electronic reader to an RFID tag and vice-versa. The ground handling staff can use a hand held RFID scanner to scan the shipment pieces at various stages of the cargo handling process. Once the RFID-tagged shipment is scanned, the RFID-enabled device will send Airway Bill (AWB)-related information to a tracking platform, enabling all stakeholders to undertake real-time, end-to-end cargo tracking. The platform is capable of tracking shipments at two levels- the shipment piece level and the ULD/container level. Furthermore, this technology can be leveraged for a gamut of cargo services such as express cargo, valuables and perishables amongst others.

“With cargo volumes burgeoning in Bengaluru, it is imperative that we embrace innovation and technological advancements to create an efficient cargo handling environment. The RFID technology has a unique advantage of tracking shipments at piece level, which brings transparency to the supply chain and helps AISATS manage large volumes of cargo seamlessly. We are excited to be the first air cargo terminal operator company to implement this technology in India at Kempegowda International Airport. The new system will help reduce cargo turnaround time and improve handling efficiency, thus promising a hassle-free experience for all stakeholders. AISATS will continue to collaborate with SATS to harness its technological and operational expertise in developing new capabilities that will add value to cargo and ground handling operations at the airports we operate in India.” said Mike Chew, CEO, AISATS.

Apart from this latest RFID tracking system, AISATS has previously introduced many other firsts to the cargo handling system at Kempegowda International Airport such as the Automated Storage & Retrieval System (ASRS), the Very Narrow Aisle (VNA) and High Rise Racking System at its Air Freighter Terminal. AISATS has also developed India’s 1st integrated on-airport perishable cargo handling center, the AISATS COOLPORT. AISATS is also the first air cargo operator in Bengaluru to launch its very own ‘AISATS Cargo App’, which furnishes its customers with comprehensive cargo tracking solutions. In addition, AISATS has also became the first Indian air cargo terminal operator to achieve TAPA ( Transport Asset Protection Association) FSR 2017 Class A certification which ensures highest security standards at the cargo facility.

Tom Hricik joins HGS as President and Head of Business Development, North America

Hinduja Global Solutions (HGS), (listed in BSE & NSE), a global leader in business process management, has announced the hiring of Tom Hricik, a new member of its executive leadership team, to focus on the topline growth of the business.

Tom brings with him more than 30 years of experience in sales, client management, P&L management, operations and consulting. He will join the North American team in helping to meet growth objectives, working with both existing accounts as well as with the new logo team to build a healthy pipeline and win new business that is profitable and sustainable.

“With a healthy P&L, HGS is able to make the essential investments in technology and our people to help our clients be more competitive by solving their industry business problems,” Hricik said.  “As a growing global company we have remarkable client retention resulting from being brilliant at providing core services while helping customers adopt automation and analytics-based innovation to meet their present and future needs.  HGS is a formidable Business Process Services player with our current and expanding portfolio of offerings.”

For the past 17 years, Tom has served in a variety of business and sales leadership roles at Conduent, a business process services companies, where he drove collaboration with internal and external partners to maximize the value of the BPO, consulting and technology services for clients. Tom is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University with undergraduate and graduate degrees focused in in information systems and industrial relations.

“We are excited that leaders the caliber of Tom are seeing the value in the vision, capability and client portfolio of HGS and investing their careers in helping to grow the business,” said Partha DeSarkar, Global Chief Executive Officer, HGS. “Tom will play a critical role in raising client, employee and shareholder value by consistently delivering innovation and deep domain expertise to grow traditional and transformational business.”

Aeris & Hello Tractor Collaborate to Offer 'Tractors-as-a-Service’ in India & ASEAN Region


Aeris, a technology leader in the Internet of Things (IoT), announced today its partnership with Hello Tractor in Africa to launch “Tractors-as-a-Service” in India and the ASEAN region in the session “India - Africa – ASEAN: Internet of Things (IoT) in Agriculture” organized in association with The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) in New Delhi. Industry leaders and diplomats from Indian, ASEAN and African embassies in New Delhi were part of this event.

With the Aeris IoT platform, called Aeris Mobility Platform, (also known as AMP), tractor tracking, utilization time and billing is simplified, based on time in the field and area covered. Our partnership enables the pay-as-you-use model for small holding farmers to use tractors with innovative commercial models. Hello Tractor's innovative use of IoT simplifies complex data to ensure transparency, profitability, and accountability across the ecosystem of farmers, tractor owners, tractor dealers, original equipment manufacturers, banks, and governments. The Tractor Owner App includes tools such as, service request management, tractor and fleet management, operator performance, and activity tracking. Using the technology to their advantage, the farmers are able to plant 40 times faster at one-third the cost. The digital IoT platform is making it easy and profitable for tractor owners to monetize their machines as business assets whilst improving the livelihood of rural farmers.

The session was presided over by Ambrish Bakaya, Co-Chair of FICCI ICT and Digital Economy Initiative. Tractors form an integral part of farm mechanization and have a crucial role to play in increasing agricultural productivity. In ASEAN, per capita arable land area is 0.12 hectare, among the smallest in the world. Across the regions, the small landholdings make it unviable for farmers to own agri-machinery and implements like tractors, rotary and power tillers, rotators, seed drillers and other efficient farm equipment. In India less than 30 percent of farmers use the necessary equipment that facilitates productive and profitable work. Farmers can barely afford high-cap equipment and often take loans to buy them. This often adds onto the financial burden in a bad crop yield season. Also, small farmers often lack knowledge about modern farming practices or struggle to finance farm operations.

India, Africa and ASEAN has its roots in agrarian societies and agriculture occupies a special role in the socioeconomic development. It is an important driver for social, inclusive growth; an essential source of export earnings; a guarantor of food availability to its citizens; and a source of employment directly and through agriculture-related, value adding activities. Leveraging the partnership with Hello Tractor in the African region, Aeris India brings on-demand farming capabilities to the predominantly agrarian economies of India and ASEAN.

Jehiel Oliver, Founder & CEO, Hello Tractor says, "There is no doubt agricultural mechanization is having an impact on Indian, African and ASEAN farmers' efficiency, resource management, and productivity. The magnitude of that impact moving forward will largely depend on the private sector, government, and the public working together. Hello Tractor and Aeris have partnered to make a significant step toward amplifying this positive impact in India, Africa and the APAC region. This alliance will help farmers access more affordable, dependable, and transparent tractor services that can make a real difference in shaping the future of agriculture.”

Dr. Rishi Mohan Bhatnagar, President, Aeris India said, "Our world has many challenges to solve and we at Aeris are committed to delivering innovative technology solutions to serve the unserved. Majority of the farmers in the predominantly agrarian societies, such as India and ASEAN countries, have less than five acres of land and can barely afford high-cap equipment. We wanted to help the farmer by offering accessible and affordable farm mechanized equipment service and enable economic advancement. After successful alliance with Hello Tractor to enable “Tractor-as-a-Service” in Africa, we are now launching this in India and the ASEAN region. The service eliminates the need to invest upfront and brings down the operational costs with the pay-as-you-use model for small holding farmers.”

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