Saturday, August 10, 2019

CII 15th India Innovation Summit from Aug 21-22, 2019 in Bengaluru

Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) will organize the 15th India Innovation Summit on 21st & 22nd August 2019 at Hotel Taj West End, Bengaluru. Themed ‘Innovation Manifesto – Scaling for the next decade’ the annual flagship event by CII will focus on strategic rationale and development plan for innovation in the country. It will focus on creating policies for innovation and help build pathways for its effective implementation. Winners of the 2019 3M-CII Young Innovators Challenge Awards will be felicitated during the summit.

Announcing the 15th India Innovation Summit, Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan, Past President, CII & Chairman, India Innovation Summit said that the theme of the summit ‘Innovation Manifesto – Scaling for the next decade’ is apt as it is a statement of belief and intent. Innovation is a critical component of the future, yet, companies and the country are slow to act. The summit will create a platform for industry captains, academia, technocrats, young innovators and policy makers to deliberate and generate ideas which can be embedded within the economy & ecosystem to build an era of innovation. A dossier of recommendations from a CII standpoint on Industry, future trends, issues & bottleneck impeding the overall ecosystem of innovation will be presented during the summit.

Speaking on the Young Innovators Challenge Awards, Mr. Ramesh Ramadurai, Managing Director,3M India Limited said that 3M India & CII, once again completed a successful cycle of the ‘Young Innovators Challenge Awards’ themed ‘Disruptive Innovations to Create Social Impact’. Congratulating the six most innovative projects selected as winners under three categories i.e. Product Innovation, Service Innovation and Rural Innovation to be awarded at the summit, he said that the 2019 series received over 800 submissions with 31% of projects submitted under the Product and Service Innovation categories. Moreover, 43.5% of the total submissions received this year, were either passed the prototyped stage or have institutionalized their initiative in some form. This year the Challenge introduced two prizes for each category – Idea Prize and Impact Prize – to bring all winners at par when evaluated for innovation.

Mr. Vijaya Kuamr Ivaturi, Co-Founder & CTO, Crayon Data Pte said that concurrent to the two-day conference, CII will also be organizing an exhibition to provide an experiential understanding and a display of technological innovations by various Research and Industry partners. The pavilions would cover the spectrum of innovation, representing the macro and micro level of creativity and entrepreneurial zeal. Some of the key focus areas of the conference include Vocational Skilling, Climate change and Sustainability, living in the 5G world, Impact of digitization in Linguistics, Application of Technology in governance and transparency, New Engines of mobility, technology in fitness, Teens@work and Innovation from basics science.

Mr. Sandeep Singh, Vice Chairman, CII Karnataka said that innovation has really caught on in interior India. We need to align future strategies and growth with innovation. The Innovation Summit for the last fifteen years has been a flagship event of CII Karnataka it focuses on innovation as a process to generate ideas and formulate a plan for execution.

More than 200 Exhibitors from various sectors of business will showcase their Innovative products and Services at this Exhibition. The two-day event will focus on transformative polices based on sustainable, just and a resilient approach. It will facilitate a meeting of the minds from diverse sectors with a unique mix of corporate leaders, entrepreneurs, Govt. representatives, academia and general public making it a great networking event as well as a learning experience.

Subex Releases the State of IoT Security Report India for Q2 2019

Subex, a leading telecom solutions provider released the findings of its State of Internet of Things (IoT) Security Report for the second quarter (April-June 2019) of this calendar year in New Delhi today. The report, based on threat intelligence data gathered from across 15 cities all over India, outlines key sectors being attacked, the methods of attack, malware, and variants deployed, key cities that are being attacked and studied by hackers, malware developers and hacktivist groups.

The report was released by Minister of State for Home, Krishna Reddy at a function in New Delhi.

Key findings of the report include:

Mumbai, New Delhi, and Bengaluru are attracting the maximum number of cyberattacks
Smart cities, financial services, and transportation sectors lead the sectoral rankings in terms of cyberattacks
The number of cyberattacks registered a 22 percent jump in the quarter
There has been a significant rise in reconnaissance attacks 
A range of sophisticated malware is being deployed by hackers to target critical infrastructure projects
IoT projects are being targeted at the proof of concept stages itself and many malware samples isolated showed a tendency to persist and listen to the network traffic
The study identified over 2550 unique malware samples in the country which is the highest reported so far. Modular and military-grade malware is often used by specialist hackers and groups with budgets and access to research and development facilities or online shops that develop and sell such sophisticated malware. Increase in the number of attacks with a geopolitical motivation is also a trend the study has reported.

The high level of malware persistence reported is indicative of a larger trend. Hackers are becoming more patient and willing to wait to attack or steal data. Also, the newer malware variants being detected are stealthier and can evade detection for a longer duration of time than before the study found. Such malware operates by staying silent while keeping their footprint and signature below detection thresholds. They can also streamline their behavior to match network traffic and stay dormant until certain thresholds are breached.       

“By releasing these findings we intend to increase awareness and provide decision makers and other stakeholders sufficient data points to frame appropriate interventions. We hope this report will serve its purpose and help India secure its infrastructure and connected components. Today, our honeypot network is active in 62 cities around the globe. The threat intelligence generated from these cities is crunched in our IoT lab in Bengaluru to generate actionable intelligence on the threat environment surrounding IoT deployments. The threat intelligence compiled points to a high level of hacker interest in projects in India and this is indeed a matter of concern,” said P Vinod Kumar, CEO, Subex.

Emami Limited Posts 47 Percent Profit Growth in Q1FY20

The Board of Directors of Emami Limited met on August 2019 to consider the unaudited financial results of the company for the quarter ended June 30, 2019.

The June quarter witnessed challenges in terms of adverse economic conditions such as channel liquidity issues and muted rural incomes which coupled with a high base in Q1FY19 impacted growth levels in the domestic business. Despite such challenges, the company closed the quarter with Revenues of ₹ 649 cr which grew by 6% over previous year.

During the quarter, both Kesh King and 7 Oils continued to post robust growth, while Navratna grew satisfactorily.  However, muted performance of Pain Management, Male Grooming, BoroPlus and Healthcare range led to lower growth in the domestic business. While, key brands like Navratna, Zandu & Mentho Plus balms, Kesh King and BoroPlus continued to gain market shares, Fair and Handsome maintained its leadership.

International Business grew by 34% during the quarter led by a strong performance in SAARC and MENAP regions. Excluding the new acquisition Creme 21, International Business grew by 10%.

During the quarter, Gross margins at 64.2% declined by 210 bps due to an increase in raw material costs.  Despite this, EBIDTA grew by 11% and EBIDTA margins at 20.7% grew by 110 bps. PAT at ₹ 39 cr grew by 47% and PAT margins increased by 170 bps.

Mr Mohan Goenka, Director, Emami Limited said, “We are happy to report a healthy profit-led growth this quarter with revenues growing by 6% and PAT growing by 47%. Despite continuing input cost pressure, our EBIDTA margins expanded by 110 bps. However, the macroeconomic environment continues to be challenging, with a distinct slowdown in the consumer demand curve particularly for discretionary products. Despite such challenges, we are satisfied with the performance of Kesh King, Navratna, 7 Oils in One and international business this quarter. With the stabilization of raw material prices and the government impetus to put rural growth on the fast track, we expect business to bounce back in the coming quarters”

Mr Harsha V Agarwal, Director, Emami Limited said, “Our power brands reinforced leadership in the respective categories increasing their market shares during the quarter which we believe is credible given a hesitant consumer sentiment.  In the international front, our new acquisition of the German personal care brand Creme 21 received encouraging consumer traction. Our outlook for the balance quarters in FY 20 remains positive based on the business strategy adopted to build a strong foundation for sustainable profitable growth, efficient management of risks /challenges and improvement of operating margins.”

Dvara KGFS Receives Rating Upgrade from ICRA Agency

Credit rating agency ICRA upgraded the long-term rating of Dvara KGFS one notch up from BBB-  to BBB. The rating upgrade is for both the Line of Credit (LOC) and Subordinated Debenture Programme of Dvara KGFS, with the outlook on the long-term rating set at stable.

The rating upgrade comes on the back of a recent equity infusion of 97 crores in April 2019, which allowed the company to diversify its operations into newer geographies, strengthen its presence in existing geographies and solidify its capital base for further growth. The rating upgrade reinforces the strong collection efficiency witnessed across Dvara KGFS operations and is an affirmation of the management team’s ability to execute the company’s growth plans while maintaining its strong financial position.

Commenting on the rating upgrade, Joby C O, Chief Executive Officer, Dvara KGFS, said "This upgrade by ICRA is an endorsement to the credibility that the Company has earned based on its performance in the past many years, and a strong risk framework that has been put in place. This rating upgrade is hugely positive in the current market and an acknowledgement to the management’s clear intent and focus on performance. This helps to reinforce the confidence the banks have put on us. We are hoping that this helps our fund-raising effort in the next quarters. "

Highlighting the importance of the upgrade, Samir Shah, Executive Vice-Chair & Group President of Dvara Trust, said "Dvara KGFS is a key part of the Dvara Group with a mission to be the preferred financial partner to rural households in India. We are delighted to see its progress, excited about its future as a truly unique deep rural holistic customer-centric financial services business model and thankful to all our partners who support KGFS in its journey to help underserved rural households to achieve their aspirations."

McAfee to Acquire NanoSec to Enhance its Market-Leading Capabilities in Cloud Security

McAfee, the device-to-cloud cybersecurity company, has announced the acquisition of NanoSec, a multi-cloud, zero-trust application and security platform. The acquisition will enable organizations to improve governance and compliance and to reduce risk of their cloud and container deployments.

Organizations are increasingly looking to adopt container technologies to help modernize legacy applications and create new cloud-native applications that are scalable and agile. Gartner predicts that “by 2022, more than 75% of global organizations will be running containerized applications in production, which is a significant increase from fewer than 30% today1.” Gartner recommends the following security and governance best practice, “security can’t be an afterthought. It needs to be embedded in the DevOps process, which Gartner refers to as ‘DevSecOps’. Organizations need to plan for securing the containerized environment across the entire life cycle, which includes the build and development process, deployment and run phase of an application.”

The acquisition of NanoSec will strengthen the container security capabilities of McAfee MVISION Cloud and MVISION Server Protection products, giving its customers the ability to speed up application delivery while enhancing governance, compliance and security of their hybrid, multi-cloud deployments. NanoSec’s security capabilities will be applied to applications and workloads deployed in containers and Kubernetes and will be integrated into McAfee MVISION Cloud and MVISION Server Protection offerings. These capabilities include continuous configuration compliance and vulnerability assessment as well as runtime application-level segmentation for detecting and preventing lateral movement of threats.

“McAfee’s focus and innovation have allowed it to deliver industry-leading cloud security capabilities to help our customers securely leverage the cloud to accelerate their business,” said Rajiv Gupta, senior vice president and general manager of the cloud security business unit, McAfee. “NanoSec’s technology is a natural extension for McAfee MVISION Cloud, enhancing our current CASB and CWPP products, and adding to our ‘Shift-Left’ capabilities to deliver on the DevSecOps best practice to improve governance and security. NanoSec’s team brings a wealth of experience to McAfee, and together we are committed to enabling organizations to reach their full cloud potential.”

“Joining forces with McAfee means that our groundbreaking capabilities including our unique application-identity based approach for app-level protection and micro-segmentation will be available on a global scale,” said Vishwas Manral, founder and CEO of NanoSec. “McAfee has demonstrated not only its leadership in cloud security, but its desire to continually innovate and deliver new capabilities that reshape how organizations can operate workloads and applications safely in the cloud. It felt like a natural fit to join McAfee to deliver to application development and security professionals greater visibility and control over detecting, responding and resolving threats to reduce risk.”

McAfee’s acquisition of NanoSec further demonstrates how McAfee is working to integrate security natively into DevSecOps processes and toolsets to discover and address security issues before applications are deployed. 

Join Hands with Emirates to Celebrate and Conserve the Gentle Giants

As the world and India celebrate World Elephant Day on 12 August, Emirates is showcasing its commitment to wildlife conservation and the urgency for protecting these majestic beasts which are a fundamental part of the country’s heritage.

The airline brings this commitment to life in wide-reaching ways across different customer touchpoints and in global forums.

One delectable way is through Amarula, served in all cabin classes inflight. The award-winning cream liqueur is crafted with the fruit of the Marula tree, which is indigenous to the woodlands of Southern Africa and is also called the Elephant Tree because it’s a favorite source of nutritious food among African Bush elephants.

The amount of Vitamin C found in a single marula fruit is eight times that found in an orange, making it an excellent source of the vitamin, not only for elephants but also for Amarula consumers.  The brand has also co-founded the Amarula Elephant Research Programme at the University of Natal, Durban and is devoted to the conservation of these elephants. All this makes it a delicious way to save elephants on-board Emirates – one Amarula sip at a time.

Five Emirates A380s feature a special livery of animals threatened by poaching, including African and Asian elephants. Part of Emirates’ global wildlife conservation efforts, the airline seeks to use its brand power and passion to generate greater awareness of this cause.

According to recent estimates, only 400,000 African elephants and 50,000 Asian elephants remain in the wild today. Ivory trafficking has seen an estimated 20,000 elephants killed every year – that’s a shocking 55 every day. Unlike African elephants, only male Asian elephants have tusks, which means poaching of males skew the sex ratio, limiting its breeding opportunities. Over 5,000 kilos of ivory tusks were seized at airports in 2016 and, since 2009, there have been over 440 seizures of illegal ivory in air transport.

This is why Emirates is a partner of ROUTES (Reducing Opportunities for Unlawful Transport of Endangered Species), and has a zero-tolerance policy on the carrying of ivory tusks or any hunting trophies or products associated with illegal wildlife activities. Emirates is also a signatory to the 2016 Buckingham Palace Declaration and Buenos Aires Declaration on Travel and Tourism and Illegal Wildlife Trade. Both underline the airline’s dedication to the conservation of wildlife and commitment to championing the cause of biodiversity to ensure a sustainable future for the planet.

The airline’s ground handling teams are fully trained according to International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) Live Animal Regulations and its internal policies on carrying wildlife. Frontline employees are trained to recognise and report suspicious cargo. A dedicated reporting channel empower employees and partners to stop illegal trade by flagging confidential information that can protect endangered species.

Poster campaigns across its organisation generate greater awareness as does the regular feature stories about wildlife protection in its inflight magazines, podcast interviews, wildlife programming and feature films on its award-winning ice inflight entertainment system.

Emirates fully funds and sponsors the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR), a desert wildlife reserve. In 2018, the reserve was accepted as a candidate for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Green List for Protected and Conserved Areas – a global standard for protected areas. The reserve practices sustainable tourism and hosted 285,000 visitors last year, making it one of the most popular yet protected areas in the region. Efforts to re-introduce antelopes to the reserve has also resulted in success, inspiring the relocation of Oryx and gazelle to other protected areas within the region. A regional leader in ecological research, DDCR actively collaborates with local and international universities through major research projects on animals, vegetation and the desert ecosystem.

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Thompson Smart TVs Offer Big Discounts on Flipkart National Shopping Days Sale Aug 8-15, 2019

Thomson announces heavy price drops on all its smart and non smart TV models including the newly launched OFFICIAL ANDROID SERIES during the FLIPKART NATIONAL SHOPPING DAYS SALE from August 8-15, 2019.

The nine day long NATIONAL SHOPPING DAYS SALE on FLIPKART will have THOMSON  smart TV's starting from INR 10,999 and OFFICIAL ANDROID TV's from INR 28,999.

THOMSON had recently launched India’s only make in India OFFICIAL ANDROID series keeping in mind today’s tech savvy Indian consumer who aspires to watch 4k content and high quality videos at a super affordable price. THOMSON always have kept the need of Indian consumer in mind from all sectors of the country. The brand re - launched in India early last year and since then it has introduced umpteen number of SKUs from Non-smart to 4k televisions. This is the last price drop before this year's much awaited, Big Billion Day SALE.

Announcing the offers, Avneet Singh Marwah, CEO SPPL, and Exclusive Brand Licensee of Thomson in India, said: “Our constant effort is to equip Indian consumer with the most evolving technology while keeping the affordability in mind. THOMSON will keep at it and ensure every Indian household is able to bring home a smart TV without burning a hole in their pocket."

Security and Risk Management Leaders Must Leverage the Automation Continuum to Create New Values

Leveraging the automation continuum is security and risk management leaders’ latest imperative in creating and preserving value at their organization, according to Gartner, Inc.

Katell Thielemann, research vice president at Gartner, explains that the automation continuum emerging in the security and risk landscape is one where new mindsets, practices and technologies are converging to unlock new capabilities. Using automation in areas of identity, data, and new products and services development were identified as three critical areas for the security and risk enterprise.

“We are no longer asking the singular question of how we’re managing risk and providing security to our organization. We’re now being asked how we’re helping the enterprise realize more value while assessing and managing risk, security and even safety. The best way to bring value to your organizations today is to leverage automation,” said Ms. Thielemann.

Automation is All Around Us

Automation is already all around us — and it is starting to impact the security and risk world in two ways:

* As an enabler to the security and risk function itself
* As new security frontiers that need to be acknowledged and understood

“Automation follows a continuum of sophistication and complexity, and can use a number of techniques, either stand-alone or in combination,” said David Mahdi, senior research director at Gartner. “For example, robotic process automation currently works best in task-centric environments, but process automation is evolving to increasingly powerful bots, and eventually to autonomous process orchestration.”

By 2021, 17% of the average organization’s revenue will be devoted to digital business initiatives, and by 2022, content creators will produce more than 30% of their digital content with the aid of AI content-generation techniques.

“What this means to security and risk management professionals is that our organizations are likely building solutions and making technology-related choices often without realizing the risk implications of what they are doing,” said Mr. Mahdi.

Balancing Emerging Technologies and People

“Automation is just the beginning. Emerging technologies will change everything and impact security and risk directly,” said Beth Schumaecker, director, advisory at Gartner. “Our reliance on data is ever increasing, yet it poses one of the largest privacy risks to organizations. In the next two years, half of large industrial companies will use some emerging form of digital twins, which will also need to be secured.”

The demands of these emerging technologies and digital transformation introduce new talent challenges for the security function, altering how organizations expect security to be delivered.

“Digital transformation demands that security staff play a wider range of roles, from strategic consultants to threat profilers to product managers, which in turn require new skills and competencies,” said Ms. Schumaecker. “It’s already impossible to fill all our existing vacancies.”

Mission-Critical Areas in Automation

The three mission-critical areas in today’s enterprises are automation in identity, data and new products or services development:

* Identity is the foundation for all other security controls, especially as the business increasingly moves to cloud environments. Identity decisions should always remain within the organization’s control, whether it is about humans or machines.
* Data is what organizations now depend on for virtually every transaction, and it needs to be shared as much as it needs to be protected.
* New products and services developed as emerging technologies gain a stronghold, prompting organizations to adapt and push the envelope.

Fossil Unveils its 4th Standalone Retail Store in Bangalore

FOSSIL announces the launch of its latest retail store in Bangalore at Forum Mall in Koramangala. Following the success of their existing stores in the metro and across the country, this new store will offer an entire range of Fossil merchandise. Fourth in the city, this brand store is scheduled to be inaugurated on Friday, 9th August 2019.

The store reflects the brand’s vintage and authentic personality while offering a unique shopping experience to its customers. The products range from traditional watches to smart watches, from leather bags to wallets, sunglasses, jewelry and more. Through the launch of this new retail store in Bangalore, Fossil expands its presence in the region and key cities across the country.

Announcing the launch, Mr. Johnson Verghese - Managing Director, Fossil India said, “We aim towards offering a seamless and delightful experience to all our customers who visit our stores. It is truly vital to continue engaging with them at a personal level in order to help them find a timepiece that is just perfect for them. The store also offers a wide range of products across categories, all known for their quality and style quotient.

With the launch of this store in Bangalore, our strategy is to bring more potential customers closer to the brand while highlighting the significance that the Southern market holds for Fossil.”

Following the launch of the last store in Chennai, Fossil continues to build their network of stores with the establishment of the brand’s 18th store in the country. The brand’s Fall collection and the much awaited, Generation 5 smartwatches are all set to hit the Fossil Stores later this year!

Trend Micro First to Deliver XDR Across Email, Network, Endpoint, Server and Cloud Workloads

Trend Micro Incorporated, a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, today was first to offer detection and response capabilities integrated across email, network, endpoint, server and cloud workloads. This is designed to give enterprises broader visibility of a risk posture while connecting minor events from different security silos to detect more complex attacks that otherwise remain unnoticed.

ESG research shows that 55% of organizations use more than 25 individual cybersecurity technologies; despite this, attacks are increasing and bypassing existing controls. IT Security teams receive more than 10,000 security alerts daily, according to a 2018 SC Media Survey. The universal level of pain and inefficiency this causes is clear. According to the Verizon 2018 Data Breach Investigations Report, “the mean time to identify a breach increased to 197 days and containing a breach increased to 69 days,” leaving criminals nearly 9 months hiding in an organization and causing damage.

“The threat landscape is unrelenting and the skills gap is nearly unsolvable, so we have done more to help,” said Nilesh Jain, Vice President, Southeast Asia and India, Trend Micro. “Business security cannot rely on endpoints alone. Unlike legacy EDR offerings that ignore certain key threat vectors like email, we scale across more sources for the most complete detections generated as early as possible.”

Connecting detections, telemetry, process data, and network metadata across email, network, endpoint and cloud workloads minimizes manual work and quickly correlates events that humans are unable to process given the onslaught of daily alerts across individual product silos. Trend Micro’s global threat intelligence adds further relevance and context around event data and is enhanced by specific detection rules from the company’s security experts that target the highest priority threats.

In Trend Micro’s XDR solution, the “X” refers to the most extensive sets of data from more protection points, which is critical to find hidden threats. The resulting detections are more accurate, are generated faster and provide better context than ever before. Having one version of the security truth and a standardized schema for interpreting alerts also makes life easier for stretched IT security teams.

According to Gartner, “Threats are becoming more complex, multifaceted and easy to miss if you are only looking at one piece of the investigation puzzle. It takes collaboration from various security technologies, and great use of the data coming from external and internal sources to understand the big picture of which threats are truly a problem for an organization. It takes collaboration, context, system intelligence and visualization to really solve modern security problems.”

The comprehensive XDR solution applies the most effective expert analytics to the deep data sets collected from Trend Micro solutions across the enterprise, making faster connections to identify and stop attacks. In 2019, Trend Micro has identified a high number of attacks that utilized lateral movement, with most bypassing the endpoint altogether which illustrates the need for centralized visibility.

XDR is available as a managed service to augment an in-house team with Trend Micro threat experts. Trend Micro’s Managed XDR provides 24x7 full threat analysis, threat hunting, response plans and remediation recommendations.

Anvayaa kin Care Bags the Prestigious HYSEA Award 2019

Anvayaa Kin Care, India’s leading, Artificial-Intelligence (AI) enabled, holistic & personalised, one-stop, senior care provider, added a new title to its credit. The Hyderabad based tech start-up bagged two milestones at the Hyderabad Software Enterprises Association, (HYSEA) Awards by winning the honors of “Best Software Product” in the social impact category and for being recognised as one of the hot 10 start-ups for 2019.

The prestigious HYSEA awards which takes place every year, as part of the Summit, was presided by Mr. Vineet Nayar, Founder Chairman and CEO of Sampark Foundation, with guests of Honour, Mr. S. K. Joshi, IAS, Chief Secretary at Government of Telangana, Mr. Jayesh Ranjan, IAS, Principal Secretary to Government of Telangana at ITE&C DEPARTMENT and Dr. Omkar Rai, Director General of Software Technology Parks of India.

Speaking on this occasion, Mr. Prashanth Reddy, Founder-Director of Anvayaa Kin Care said, “Winning these prestigious awards are a testimony of our commitment and core values. It’s a proud moment for all of us at Anayaa Kin Care especially our team of professionals without whom this would not have been possible. The scarcity of trained caregivers to deal with the health, social and emotional needs of an ageing population continues to be perhaps the most serious gap and draw back faced by many countries. Anvayaa Kin Care bridges this gap and has been providing elder care support to over 800+ families since its inception in 2016.”

Anvayaa Kincare, a personalised and App-based service exclusively designed for the Senior Citizens allows one to not only keep a tab on the well-being of their loved ones past their prime, but also help them with essential services. Anvayaa assists with dedicated support staff who can offer round-the-clock service.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Acer Unveils the Future of Gaming, Debuts Eight New Gaming Laptops and Accessories


• The new gaming laptops have been launched in India, with prices starting from Rs. 59,999 and going all the way up to Rs. 4,49,999. There are 8 gaming laptops distributed across a varied price range

• The new devices feature advanced technologies, innovative new designs features, advanced cooling system, powered by up to 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9 processor, and infused with NVIDIA GeForce

• The Nitro 5 both 15 inch and 17-inch gaming laptops have 80 percent screen-to-body ratio thanks to its 7.18 mm (0.28 inches) narrow-bezel design

• The new Nitro 7 gaming laptop will turn heads with its sleek, mobile metal design measuring 19.9 mm (0.78 inches) thin with a 78 percent screen-to-body ratio and up to 7 hours of battery life

• The redesigned Predator Helios 300 continues to set the bar for midrange gaming notebooks with a bold new look and up to new 9th Gen Intel Core i7 processors, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070, 2060, or the latest GeForce® GTX GPUs.

• Predator Triton 500 is a powerful 15.6-inch Full HD gaming notebook slimmed down to just 17.9 mm (0.70 inches) thin and weighing 2.1 kg (4.6 lbs.)

• Predator Helios 700 arises with a unique design with an army of the latest and greatest technologies. This machine comes with an all-new 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9 processor, an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 or 2070 GPU, up to 64GB of DDR4 memory. It also comes with Dual 4th Gen AeroBlade™ 3D Fans, five copper heat pipes, a vapor chamber and Acer CoolBoost™ Technology.

• Predator Triton 900 features the new NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 GPU

• The Nitro Stream is a dedicated streaming PC for hassle-free, Full HD streaming on PC or console games

• AOPEN has an extensive portfolio of monitors in various segments that deliver cutting edge technology which redefines the entire viewing experience at affordable price

ACER, the leading global PC brands, today unveiled a wide array of gaming laptops aimed at gaming enthusiasts across segments at a grand event in Mumbai. Acer is the first-ever player in the market to debut such a wide range of product portfolio at a time.

Inheriting the advanced spirit of its predecessors, these devices are ready to conquer the gaming arena with the latest processor, integrated Pass-Through Feature, cutting edge 3D Technology, 4th Gen AeroBlade, Waves MaxxAudio Suite + Waves Nx 3D Virtual Sound and much more to give the gamers an immersive gaming experience, more powerful devices that combine technical prowess. These exciting machines include the powerhouse Triton 900, a beast in a slim form the Triton 500, Helios 700, Helios 300- 17 inch, Helios 300- 15 Inch. To tantalize casual gamers and performance enthusiasts, Acer India also launched Nitro 7, Nitro 5 17-inch, Nitro 5 15-inch, and associated accessories.

Mr. Harish Kohli, President & Managing Director, Acer India, stated, “Keeping up with the growing demand for gaming PC’s in India, Acer has always gone the extra mile to ensure that our gaming machines offer the right design and power for the best gaming experience. We are excited to introduce our latest lineup of gaming devices for Indian gaming enthusiasts. The new range is built with an emphasis on strong performance, responsiveness and intelligent design. The innovation and features will please the most discerning gaming aficionados.”

Chandrahas Panigrahi, CMO and Consumer Business Head, Acer India, said, “We are delighted to introduce an array of gaming machines and accessories. The consumer today has discerning taste and gamers in particular are a knowledgeable lot and know exactly what they want. With this launch, we have our gamers covered in every possible segment. Our new machines are fast, powerful and come loaded with features that are bound to excite the gamers and take their gaming experience to a whole new level."

Specifications - The Predator Triton 900 — the Convertible Gaming Notebook Evolved

The Predator Triton 900 is a gaming notebook in a robust futuristic metal chassis convertible gaming laptop with innovative new design features. The new Predator Triton 900 gaming laptop is its gorgeous 17.3-inch 4K IPS display that floats above the chassis. It features a CNC-machined Ezel Aero Hinge that flips, extends, or reclines the 17-inch display. Users can switch between four usage modes: Display mode for sharing the screen with friends during gaming sessions, Ezel mode for playing games on the touch screen, notebook mode for traditional gaming scenarios, and stand mode — effectively turning the Triton 900 into a tablet for gaming or using creator tools. The Triton series 900’s trackpad is placed beside the keyboard, giving users natural hand placement for gaming using both the keyboard and trackpad. It’s also amazingly thin at just 23.75 mm (0.94 inches).

Featuring the new NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 GPU and a 4K IPS touch display, the Predator Triton 900 brings gamers a best-in-class gaming experience. With 9th Gen Intel Core i9 processor, two 512GB 1M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs in Raid 0, and up to 32GB DDR4 memory, gamers can power up the most demanding games and expect smooth, tear-free gameplay with up to 5GHz1Turbo, 8 cores, 16 MB of smart cache, and great battery life. It comes with per-key RGB backlighting, macro keys, and a switchable trackpad/Numpad. Mechanical keyboards will help when it comes to the comfort of typing and offers a better response rate compared to membrane keys. The latter benefits gaming.

Specifications - The Predator Triton 500 — A beast in a slim form

The Predator Triton 500 is a powerful 15.6-inch Full HD gaming notebook sits at a mere 17.9mm in thickness and weighs approximately 2.1 kg, and is aimed for portability. It has a durable, all-metal chassis and narrow bezels measuring just 6.3 mm (0.25 inches) for an impressive 81 percent body-to-screen ratio. The slimmed-down Triton 500 can easily be slipped in a backpack or briefcase, but once taken out and powered on, it becomes a gaming powerhouse. And with up to 8-hours of battery life, users can play their favorite titles on the road or with friends away from home.

The Predator Triton 500 infused with NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 GPUs with Max-Q design, up to 8th Gen Intel Core i7 processors, NVMe PCIe RAID 0 SSDs, and up to 32GB DDR4 memory. Its GPU is overclockable and VR-Ready, letting gamers enjoy the latest cutting-edge gaming and VR experiences. The 15.6-inch 300 nits IPS display brings games to life with 144Hz refresh rates in overdrive at 3ms. NVIDIA G-SYNC technology creates fluid images as they zip across the screen while gaming or watching movies.

Both Predator Triton 900 and 500 receive their gaming cred with Acer’s advanced cooling system that includes 4th Gen AeroBlade™ 3D metal fans that increase airflow by 45 percent, and Coolboost™ technology that keeps the notebooks cool during extended gaming sessions and while playing demanding AAA titles. To round out the package, both Triton 900 and Triton 500 features audio by Waves. Waves Maxx™ delivers superior sound quality made immersive with Waves Nx™ with head tracking for a 3D audio experience.

Price and Availability:
Price – INR 1,65,999 onwards
Available at E-Store and Acer Malls.

Predator Helios 300 (15 inch and 17inch)— Creating the Bar for Midrange Gaming Notebooks Specifications

The Predator Helios 300 gaming notebook comes with a new sophisticated design that just got better with the addition of powerful technologies and killer features. Praised for being one of the first notebooks and it comes in two displays sizes -15 inch and 17 inch Full HD IPS display. Both the display features 144Hz refresh rate and 3m response time or a tear-free, seamless gaming experience. Powered by the newest 9th Gen Intel Core i7 processors for premium performance with the addition of the latest of the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 GPU with Max-Q Design supported by a Turbo key for one-punch overclocking and Killer DoubleShot™ Pro for fast and lag-free networking. With up to 32GB of DDR4 2666MHz memory and up to two PCIe NVMe SSDs in RAID 0 plus a hard drive, it’s the powerhouse gamers crave for playing today’s AAA games.

Cooling Technology Inspired by Nature

The most noticeable is the notebook’s cooling solution. Keeping the notebook running cool and at peak performance is an advanced and efficient thermal design that unlocks the true potential of the Helios’s powerful hardware. Most critical at keeping the temperature low is a dual-fan cooling system that includes one of Acer’s 4th Gen AeroBlade 3D Fans. This latest generation fan design was inspired by bionic silent owl flight mechanics that maximize airflow and minimize noise. The new 0.1mm-thin fan blades include a serrated edge, winglets along the top and bottom, as well as a curved fin along the inner portion of each blade. This results in up to a 45 percent improvement in airflow. Coupled with strategically placed intake and exhaust vents and Acer CoolBoost™ technology, the Helios 300 stays calm under pressure and handles intense overclocked gaming sessions with ease.

Also, the metal chassis now rocks the stylish teal blue accents and keyboard backlighting found on other Predator notebooks. A narrow bezel around the display and a redesigned keyboard with contemporary looking Predator fonts give it a hip and edgy look.

Last but not least is a completely new keyboard featuring distinctive Predator fonts and 4-zone RGB lighting. Usability and functionality are improved with new PredatorSense and Turbo hotkeys, an enlarged spacebar, and concave shaped, highlighted WASD keys, arrow keys, and hotkeys.

Price and Availability:

Helios 300 15’’
Price – INR 99,999 onwards
Available at E-Store and Acer Malls.

Helios 300 17’’
Price – INR 1,14,999 onwards
Available at E-Store and Acer Malls.
Predator Helios 700 – a desktop in a laptop disguise Specifications

Powering the uniquely designed Predator Helios 700 notebook is an army of the latest and greatest technologies ready to battle. This machine was built with a high-octane purpose. With an including up to an all-new 9th Gen Intel Core i9 processor for the top of the line overclockable performance, an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 or 2070 GPU, up to 64GB of DDR4 memory. In terms of connectivity options, the laptop gets a Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX 1650 and E3000 adaptors delivering up to four times more network capacity in dense environments than previous-generation wireless AC networks. All that power makes games roar to life on the notebook’s 17-inch 144Hz FHD IPS display with 3ms response time and NVIDIA G-SYNC technology. The laptop also comes with five speakers and a subwoofer to keep the games immersive and engage with full and realistic audio.

Introducing HyperDrift for Enhanced Cooling

The all-new Predator Helios 700 features a unique HyperDrift forward-sliding keyboard that helps maximize airflow to keep the system running cool and enable gamers to push the powerful components to their highest potential. By simply sliding the keyboard forward, two additional air intakes are uncovered above the keyboard and below the display, giving the powerful heat-generating components extra airflow for maximum cooling and unleashed overclocking. The glass panel also provides a view of the notebook’s heat pipes. The new Predator Helios 700 consists of two of Acer’s custom-engineered Dual 4th Gen AeroBlade 3D Fans, five copper heat pipes, a vapor chamber, and Acer CoolBoost Technology.

Price and Availability:

Predator Helios 700 17’’
Price – INR 2,49,999 onwards
Available mid-September
Nitro 7 – A Striking New Metal Chassis specifications

New Nitro7 gaming notebook is for casual gamers looking to boost their gaming performance as they connect with friends online and equip with the tools to dominate the battlefield for the ultimate gaming experience. The new Nitro 7 gaming laptop will turn heads with its sleek, mobile metal design measuring 19.9 mm (0.78 inches) thin with a 78 percent screen-to-body ratio and up to 8 hours of battery life. Its high-resolution 15.6-inch display reproduces lifelike colors at a 144Hz1 refresh rate with a 3ms response time for a tear-free gaming experience — crucial while in the throes of battle. The all-new Nitro 7 packs with Next-Gen Intel® Core™ processor and the latest NVIDIA GeForce® Graphics to ensure a seamless gaming experience. It also has ample storage, with two slots available for M.2 Gen 3x4 PCIe SSDs using NVMe technology in RAID 0, and up to 32GB of DDR4 RAM with up to 2TB of HDD storage.

Nitro 5: Designed for Domination Specifications

Acer’s updated Nitro 5 laptop allows users to enjoy their favorite games in exceptional detail with a Full HD IPS display in either a 17.3-inch narrow bezel display or 15.6-inch with an impressive 80 percent screen-to-body ratio.

The Nitro 5 combines a 9th Gen Intel Core processor, the latest NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX graphics, two M.2 Gen 3 x4 PCIe SSDs using NVMe technology in RAID 0, and up to 32GB of DDR4 RAM for superior gaming performance at a value. It effortlessly streams gameplay with Gigabit Wi-Fi 5 with 2x2 MU-MIMO technology. Users can also connect supporting gadgets with an array of ports such as HDMI 2.0, USB Type-C 3.2 Gen 1, and more.

Aggressive cooling with NitroSense

Users can monitor and manage the Nitro 7 and Nitro 5 with NitroSense, accessible with one touch of the NitroSense hot key. Its twin fans push air out of the back-right edge of the chassis, covering temperatures, fan speeds and more. It also allows for fan speed monitoring and adjusting in real-time, so gamers can customize their speed or set fans to the max when the heat is on. Additionally, users can set up a power plan to achieve optimal power usage in different scenarios, or access Acer TrueHarmony’s six sound modes, turn sticky keys on or off and activate the LCD overdrive to bring the display response time down to 3ms3.

Highlight Gameplay with Supercharged Connectivity:

Nitro 7 and Nitro 5 controls network with Killer™ Ethernet E25002 and effortlessly stream with Gigabit Wi-Fi 5 (aka 802.11ac) with 2x2 MU-MIMO technology. The Ethernet controller automatically detects game, video and chat streams to deliver prioritized bandwidth for virtually lag-free user experience.

Price and Availability:

Nitro 7

Price – INR 84,999 onwards
Available at E-Store and Acer Malls.
Nitro 5 15’’
Price – INR 59,999 onwards
Available at E-Store and Acer Malls.

Coolpad to Introduce its First 5G Smartphones in the Indian Market

Coolpad, a leading global smartphone brand established by Yulong Group, is set to revolutionize the Indian smartphone industry by launching the country’s first 5G ready smartphones. The brand, which has established itself as a synonym for innovation and progress, has been investing significantly in 5G technology since 2012. As a result, it is ready to disrupt the market with future-ready devices as soon as the 5G network is set-up for use in the country.

On the back of its continued innovation, Coolpad India has already filed over 800 patents in the name of 5G. It has also been granted 120 device-to-device 5G patents which put the brand in the position to gain an early-mover’s advantage as far as 5G technology is concerned. The brand is in discussions with Qualcomm and Mediatek on the integration of 5G technology in its smartphones.

Speaking on the development, Mr Fisher Yuan, CEO, Coolpad India, said, “Since its inception, Coolpad India has aimed to satiate the needs of the value-conscious Indian consumers who expect remarkable specifications at budget-friendly prices. In line with our constant endeavour to exceed customer expectations that we have accelerated the development and launch of our 5G ready devices in the country. Depending on the readiness of the 5G network in India, we are aiming to launch these devices early next year.”

Commenting on the same, Pankaj Upadhyay, Online Business  Head, Coolpad India, said, “With the rapid growth of the Indian smartphone industry in the recent years, we too have started to change its era after the launch of Cool 3 Plus. Consumer-oriented R&D is our top priority at Coolpad, therefore, we are working to expedite the launch of the 5G enabled smartphones and aiming for a higher share in its development. As soon as the Indian smartphone network is ready, we will launch our first 5G smartphones.

Coolpad has been making significant waves in the Indian smartphone market thanks to its innovative and value-driven offerings. Recently, it successfully launched the Coolpad Cool 3 Plus smartphone that features an MT6761 (Helio A22), Quad Core 2.0 GHz Clock Speed coupled with 3 GB RAM, and a stunning 5.7” Dewdrop screen. Now, with this announcement, Coolpad has further positioned itself for exceptional growth in the country, and is well on its way to achieving its goal of becoming the most loved smartphone brand in India.

Coolpad has been operating in India since 2007, having starting operations as a vendor of CDMA handsets to Reliance. It became an original device maker (ODM) for some local brands before entering the Indian market as a standalone brand during 3G to 4G transition. The brand further aims to invest $500 million in India in the next five years to strengthen its presence and to take on its rivals in the 5G landscape.

What you need to know about us:

·         First to Introduce most affordable fingerprint enabled smartphone in India
·         Launched the world’s first CDMA/GSM dual-mode, dual-standby smartphone
·         Consumer oriented R&D is our top priority
·         One of the companies who invested in R&D for 5G develpoment in the earlier 2012
·         Coolpad has more than 800+ patents under the name of 5G
·         400+ service centers across India.

Racold Redefines the Water Heater Category with ‘Omnis’ & ‘Aures’

India is witnessing the monsoon and with the drop in mercury levels, taking hot shower becomes an essential part of life. Ahead of the coming winter season, Racold brand, India’s largest provider of water heating solutions today, announced the launch of its two most stylish and technologically upbeat products – ‘Omnis’ and ‘Aures’ in India. This new range from Racold redefines the water heater category which is rapidly moving from low to high penetration, with disposable income in Indian households going up.

Currently the water heater industry in India is valued at Rs. 2700-2800 crores and is growing at a CAGR of ~8% percent driven mainly by low penetration which is ~less than 5%, due to increasing disposable income and growth in construction sector.

Speaking on the launch, Mr. Mohit Narula, Managing Director, Ariston Thermo India Pvt. Ltd. ­­­­­­­­­­said, “Ever since its inception, Racold, has been setting unprecedented benchmarks for the industry by bringing in new technology, enhancing the aesthetics, quality, durability and performance of the product. Backed by a deep understanding of evolving consumer needs and our strong global expertise, Racold has been the frontrunner of technology in water heating. We are pleased to announce the launch of Omnis, our topline range, with India’s first Smart Control technology which is set to redefine the water heating category In India. To add to it, we are launching our new range of online instantaneous water heaters range, Aures. Both these products are a reconfirmation of our ability to constantly innovate and provide value to our consumers.”

Today, bathrooms are transforming in response to the ever-changing nature of the consumer. They are becoming an extension of people's living spaces and personalities and have undergone a sea change. The need is all the more pronounced for luxury bathing applications like range showers, shower panels and Jacuzzis where quantum of hot water required is high. The newly launched ‘Omnis’ and ‘Aures’ range of water heaters that are high on aesthetics, high on performance and compact in size are targeted at the modern and young discerning customers. 

The Products:

Omnis: Omnis is top of the line storage water heater from Racold, a combination of highly advanced technology and energy savings features to deliver personalized hot shower. The flagship model of Omnis range comes with the following next generation features

·         Wi-Fi which is operated by Racold NET app, providing ease of control – anytime, any place
·         The Smart Bath Logic, an intelligent function allows the user to set and control the water temperature as per their bathing requirement and save up to 30% of electricity.
·         Auto diagnosis feature offer the best protection against electric shocks as the inbuilt microprocessor continuously checks all product parameters and cuts the power in case of any malfunction. It also protects from overheating.
·         The intelligent Eco Function reads the bathing pattern of the user and customizes the hot water output, thus further saving electricity

The Omnis Range will be available in 10, 15 and 25 liters. The price range, MRP for a 15 liters capacity varies from INR 14,199- 18,459, depending upon the range and is available in residential as well as small and midsized commercial spaces across India.


Aures, The No Wait Water Heater, an electric instantaneous water heater is the fastest way to provide unlimited hot water on demand.  This one of its kind sleek and super compact geyser comes with a wide range of power options from 5.5kW to 24kW. The product delivers

·         Hyper speed ensuring no waiting time for your hot water
·         Maintains constant temperature for a comfortable bath to deliver consistent thermic comfort.
·         Limitless luxury bathing applications, be it endless rain-showers, relaxing in bath tubs or Jacuzzi, there is no need to wait any more for hot water.

The Aures range is available at MRP- INR 6,999 for 5.5 KW, INR 19,999 for 9 KW, 24,999 for 12 KW and 42,999 for 24KW product. Aures range is currently available in Delhi, Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore. It will be extended soon to the other parts of the market.

NIIT Launches ‘Future Ready Talent’– an Initiative to Skill the Youth of Bangalore for the Jobs of the Future

NIIT Limited, a global leader in Skills and Talent Development, announced ‘Future Ready Talent’ an initiative to encourage youth to enhance their knowledge through future ready programs, together with their regular academic curriculum.

As part of the initiative, Ankit Vengurlekar, a popular anchor and gadget reviewer recently addressed the youth at NIIT centre, Bangalore, on ‘Leading the way from average to unique through data and IT skills’. Speaking about future ready skills, he said, “The NIIT #FutureReadyTalent event was an exciting opportunity to connect and engage with Bangalore's IT professionals. Upskilling is the greatest requirement for the dynamic IT environment of India. Courses from NIIT ensure that the students are workplace ready and can make a positive contribution towards the organisation they join”.

Ankit also shared his experience and journey while becoming an anchor and gadget reviewer to inspire and motivate students. Ankit’s expertise lies in understanding complex technologies and making them simple to understand for the viewers.

NIIT will conduct seminars nationally across 26 centres in India, in the month of July, wherein successful leaders from diverse fields will share their experiences with the youth, building awareness about the importance of new-age future ready careers.

Kshitij Jain, Vice President, Career Education Business, NIIT Ltd., said, “There are multiple career options available in today's digital economy, but the aspiring professional is  often confused due to non-availability of proper information and right guidance. Through this initiative, we aim to build awareness about new career possibilities and provide them with an opportunity to develop and grow in the field of their choice through our new-age career programs.”

According to the Future of Jobs Report (World Economic Forum), jobs in digital technology will grow from 17 % in 2018 to 33 % in 2022. Estimates have indicated that 75 million jobs may be displaced by a shift in the division of labour between humans and machines, while 133 million new roles may emerge that are more adapted to this model. This demonstrates a huge requirement of skilled employees for futuristic industry 4.0 job roles.

Towards this, NIIT offers new age programs in Digital Marketing and Branding, Data Analytics and Predictive Modelling, Full Stack Product Engineering, Banking and Finance and Accounting & Business Analytics.

Infrastructure Around Schools Needs to Improve Reveals NIMHANS-UL Report on Child Safety

Children are susceptible to injuries owing to their difficulty in risk perceptions, curiosity, impulsivity and risk-taking behaviour. A national report titled, Advancing Child Safety in India: Implementation is the Key, was released today by National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), an institute of national importance and Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a global safety science company. The report emphasizes the need to prevent child injuries and increase awareness about safety standards in schools amongst the key stakeholders. A safe environment for children is an absolute necessity for their growth and development.

Apart from the secondary research from key data sources, the report also includes the insights from safety appraisals conducted across 131 schools (public and private) in Bengaluru and Kolar districts. These schools were assessed and scored on physical infrastructure, road and fire safety and first-aid facilities. The research team developed a digital safety appraisal tool based on various existing national-level guidelines and quantified safety level percentage) in every school at a macro-level.

“Over the years, we have built long-standing partnerships with various government bodies, research organisations and leading academic institutions to conduct independent data and science-based researches. We share knowledge built over 125 years of our existence through safety education, public outreach initiatives and development of standards to ensure safer environments across domains. In India, we have been conducting National Safety Science Campaign, which focusses on educating and influencing children’s behaviour towards safety. The research study with NIMHANS looks at the infrastructure and ecosystem that exists around children that can influence safety outcomes. Policy makers, law enforcement, governments, school managements and parents have a role to play in making India safer for our children,” said Mr. Suresh Sugavanam, vice president and managing director in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa for UL.

Commenting on the significance of the report, Dr. Gururaj G, dean of neuro sciences and senior professor in the department of epidemiology for NIMHANS said, “Death, hospitalization and disabilities due to injuries is a neglected and hidden problem in India among children. There is a need for evidence-based policies and programs that require implementation on the ground. No child should die or suffer disability because of lack of implementation of preventable and workable solutions.”

 Child injury situation in India:

·         Child injuries are a growing public health problem with nearly 5,00,000 child deaths in the last decade
·         Of the total injury fatalities due to intentional and unintentional causes, child deaths account for 15%
·         60% of all child injury deaths occur among those aged between 15-18 years
·         Proportion of child injury deaths at the site of injury in rural areas (58%) was higher than urban areas (33%)
·         Nearly 41% of all fatal injuries occurred on roads followed by 31% at home
·         Road crashes / accidents are the most common cause of child injury deaths. Road traffic injuries (RTIs) accounted for 37-38% of deaths among 0-14 year-old and 62-64% among 14-18 year-old children
·         Burns and drowning accounted for 10-11% and 13-19% of all deaths respectively
·         Falls and poisoning injuries account for 5-6% of all deaths among children
·         Half the child injury deaths can be averted with efficient trauma care systems
·         10% of injured children experience temporary functional limitation varying from one week to several months. 2% of children are left with permanent disability and 12% live with long term (>6 weeks) temporary disability
Some key findings from the safety appraisals of schools in Bengaluru and Kolar:
·         Overall safety in schools was observed to be 50.8% of expected levels
·         Physical infrastructure in schools with respect to safety components (flooring, staircases, corridors, balconies, windows and railings in buildings and classrooms) was acceptable in majority of schools with anti-skid floor being present in 54.2% of the schools
·         Safety of roads adjoining the schools (in terms of school zone signage, speed limit display, presence of speed breakers, pot-hole free roads, footpaths, zebra crossings, supervised lane crossing and designated drop and pick up zones) was scored at 20.8% of expected levels. Only 17% of schools had roads which showed school zone signage and 11.5% had displayed speed limits
·         43% of school buses had closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras and 58% had global positioning system (GPS) tracking system
·         Fire safety in most schools was compromised, as it was 20% of expected levels. Most schools did not have a fire safety certificate. Evacuation plans, fire logbooks, detectors and alarms were present in less than 8% of the schools. However, 94% had extinguishers
·         90% of the schools did not maintain any injury related health record

The study revealed that while various policies and legislations like the National School Safety Guidelines, the National Disaster Management Authority’s School Safety Policy guidelines, the National Building Code, etc. are in place to promote safety and prevent injuries to children, there are several implementation challenges. The existing guidelines, legislations and standards need to be strictly rolled out by strengthening mechanisms at the local-level including funding to specifically carry out certain recommendations. Child safety is the joint responsibility of governments, ministries, departments, industries, school managements and parents. Children need to be safe in all places. Proper implementation of existing policies, programs and legislations is the first step and key to reduce child injuries in India, the report concluded.

Leaders Meditate Together at an Event Organised by Heartfulness Institute and IIM Bangalore

Over 350 thought leaders from Bangalore and further afield, including leaders from the corporate world, business, government, and research institutes, were witness to an evening of reflection, shared insights, interactive learning and an experience of the life-enhancing Heartfulness Meditation at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore. This corporate event was a precursor to the 3-day international conference on 'Elevating Consciousness Through Meditation for Global Harmony'. The conference was co-hosted by the Heartfulness Institute ( and the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, (

Guests were guided through the experience of relaxation and meditation by Daaji, the Heartfulness Guide. In his opening remarks, he said, “In Heartfulness, the thought we maintain in our heart is a divine thought. In this way of meditation we don’t have to do anything. A lot is done by the Master or Guru and we witness the impact of the Transmission in our hearts. At each chakra there is a different level of consciousness and there can be a galactic shift from one to the next. One has to be receptive, open and sensitive. Interest is important.”

The experience introduced the audience to pranahuti or Transmission, the specialty of Heartfulness Meditation. The effect of Heartfulness Meditation with pranahuti on brainwave patterns, heart rate and blood pressure, vagus nerve activity and telomere length on chromosomes, amongst other things, has been supported by research. Many feel the effects of Transmission in their first meditation session and are often surprised at their own ability to plunge into an absorbed meditative state.

After meditation, the rejuvenated audience had an interactive session with Daaji that include a talk and a Q & A session. “Meditation is about becoming one with the Self. The idea of meditation is to move from thinking to feeling. All great leaders are good followers, following their heart and listening. They are empathetic. In general women are better leaders, as they have a higher level of empathy. Meditation is all-encompassing and if practised diligently it can create transformation in our lives. It helps in leading more meaningfully, be it for managing the self, managing relationships, managing people or managing situations,” said Daaji.

Some of the questions from the audience were about the purpose, goal and benefits of meditation: how meditation can make one a better leader; the need for prayer; the difference between idol worship and spirituality; the ultimate goal of meditation; how to understand the chakras; and various states of consciousness, among others. Daaji’s simple, deeply insightful and relatable responses allowed the audience to delve deeper into the subject.

Among those who had enriching and profound experiences at the session were Basavaraju, IAS - Chief Election Commissioner, Karnataka; Rajiv Raghunandan, Managing Partner, SeedX; Padmashri Dr Bhagavatula Dattaguru; Sri Dr V K Aathre, former scientific advisor, Ministry of Defence, Govt. of India; Sri Shekhar Ramamurthy, Managing Director United Brewries Ltd; Dr A.R. Upadhya, former Director National Aeronautics Limited; Atul Satija, Founder & CEO, The Nudge; Lakshmi C, Managing Director, Accenture; Usha Jamadagni, Managing Director, Accenture; Ramesh Halagali, Lt. General, PVSM (Param Vishist Seva Medal), Indian Army; Unmesh Pawar, Partner and Head, People, Performance and Culture, KPMG India; Dipesh Sutariya, CoFounder and CEO at EnAble India, and President, Disability NGOs Alliance; Dr. Naresh Shetty, President, M S Ramaiah Memorial Hospital; Vaani. N., Jt. Controller, Commissioner of Transport; Prof. S. Settar, Emeritus Professor, National Institute of Advanced Studies, IISc. Campus and Dr. Sisir Roy, Visiting Professor, National Institute of Advanced Studies.

Professor Ramnath Narayanswamy, Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore said, “IIMB is delighted to bring Daaji and Heartfulness to this august audience. In this very fast-paced world we are in dire need of a path that helps us to experience a life with purpose in a fulfilled way. Meditation has been known to create a positive impact and there are numerous examples of it changing the lives of renowned leaders across the world.”  

METZ 40inch Android 8.0 Smart TV Available in Rs. 2000 Discounted Price at Amazon Freedom Sale Starting August 7

Premium German television brand METZ announced heavy discount of Rs. 2000 under its partner Amazon India’s Freedom Sale for its M40E6 Smart TV. The 40inch Android 8.0 that is regularly priced at Rs. 19,999 will be available at just Rs. 17,999 during the sale.  Amazon’s Freedom Sale will open first for its Prime members on August 7 at 12 noon and then for regular users at midnight on August 8 till August 11 midnight.

METZ 40inch smart Android television M40E6 offers its viewers the full HD experience.  The LED TV is Certified by Google and support bundles of apps from the Google Play store, YouTube, Hotstar and Netflix.

Speaking about the price cut Mr. Victor Wan, MD, METZ India said, "We are very pleased with the customer response for our latest range of Google Android 8.0 Smart TVs. The 40 inch segment is a highly competitive segment and to reach more and more customers we have decided to further slash our prices by Rs. 2000 as part of the Amazon Freedom Sale which is a very popular time for buyers buying electronic products online. This will make our 40-inch smart Android television one of the most value for money proposition in this segment due to our superior German technology products."

This advanced technology LED TV by METZ has a Google Assistant access through the voice remote, a quad-core processor and HDR support on the 4K variants. With the amazing picture as well as sound quality this TV also has an in-built Wi-Fi feature.

Blue Dart Brings Siblings Together for Raksha Bandhan with ‘Rakhi Express’

Blue Dart, India’s leading logistics service provider and part of Deutsche Post DHL Group (DPDHL), announces the launch of its annual ‘Rakhi Express’ on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan this August. Keeping with tradition, Blue Dart will once again give sisters across India the opportunity to ship rakhis to their brothers within India and internationally with the promise of secure and timely delivery.

Blue Dart’s ‘Rakhi Express’ is a unique opportunity that has been loved by customers for years. Through its widespread Indian domestic network, Blue Dart will deliver rakhis to over 35,000 locations across India and to 220 countries and territories across the globe through DHL’s ‘Express Easy Rakhi’. Customers can avail of a special rate of ₹ 250/- for up to 500gms for domestic shipments (anywhere within India). These offers can be availed at any of the 637 Blue Dart – DHL retail stores across India or by calling 1860 233 1234. Customers can send their rakhis through a specially designed ‘Rakhi Envelope’ and a greeting card for their personalized messages.

Speaking about the initiative, Ketan Kulkarni, CMO & Head - Business Development, Blue Dart said, “Blue Dart’s Rakhi Express has long been our most endearing offer for siblings in Blue Dart country. We want to give families that live apart, the opportunity of experiencing Raksha Bandhan to the fullest by staying connected across the country and globe. In a world of instant messaging, a carefully packed rakhi and personal note from a sister delivered with care, holds a very special place. At Blue Dart our goal is to help people that have moved away from their families in the pursuit of education or bigger opportunities a simple and quick way to stay connected.”

He further added, “We strive to provide a hassle-free, accurate and timely delivery so that people may enjoy their Raksha Bandhan without any worries.”

While customers register for the Rakhi Service on any of Blue Dart’s conveniently located stores nationwide, they also stand a chance to win exciting prizes by simply filling up a contest slogan form. Forms to participate in the slogan contest are present at the store kiosks and customers can submit them on the spot along with their shipment. The top 5 slogans will win smart phones while the next 10 best will win Titan watches!

IIFL Finance to Raise Upto Rs. 1,000 Crore via Bonds, Offers Upto 10.5% Yield

IIFL Finance, one of India’s largest Non-Banking Financial Companies, will open a public issue of bonds on August 06, 2019, to raise up to Rs. 1,000 crore, for the purpose of business growth and expansion. The bonds offer up to 10.5% yield and high degree of safety.

The UK-based CDC Group backed IIFL Finance will issue secured and unsecured redeemable non-convertible debentures (NCDs), aggregating to Rs 100 crore, with a green-shoe option to retain over-subscription up to Rs 900 crore (aggregating to a total of Rs 1,000 crore).

The IIFL Bonds offer highest yield of 10.50% p.a. for tenor of 69 months. It also offers 10.00% p.a. for short tenor of 15 months for the secured category. The bonds have monthly, quarterly and annual payment frequency along with zero coupon bonds. The other tenor offered is 39 months for secured category.

Corporates and Trusts, which are paying only MAT, can also invest in the bonds, especially 15 month tenor, where the rate is very attractive. Given the short term liquidity tightening, the 15 month bonds are well priced.10% yield for such entities becomes very attractive on a tax adjusted basis. No other similar instrument gives such returns.

CRISIL has rated the instrument as AA/Stable, which indicates that the instruments are considered to have a high degree of safety for timely servicing of financial obligations and carry very low credit risk.

Aditya Prabhu, Director, IIFL, said, “Through our strong physical presence of 1,947 branches across India and a well-diversified portfolio, we are able to meet the credit requirement of various segments of underserved population. The funds raised will help us in expanding our operation in more such areas.”

IIFL Finance is a part of the IIFL Group, which has emerged as one of India’s largest retail-focused financial services companies. IIFL Finance’s Loan Assets under Management is about Rs 35,000 Crores. Most importantly, 85% of the book is retail - which is focused on small ticket loans.

IIFL Finance had a gross NPA of 1.9% and Net NPA of 0.6%.  Total Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) stood at 19.2% at the end of March, 2019, including Tier I capital of 16.0%, as against the statutory requirement of 15% and 10% respectively. In FY19, IIFL Finance reported a profit after tax of Rs 717.4 crore, up 55% on year with a robust return on equity of 18.3%. It has strong relationship with multiple banks and financial institutions. Dependency on short-term borrowing sources which is typically Commercial Paper (CP) is quite less and the company has successfully navigated the dry down on the CP market since 2018 IL&FS crisis. CP as source of funds has reduced it from 24% at end of September 2018 to 12 % at the end of March 2019.

The lead managers to the issue are Edelweiss Financial Services Ltd, IIFL Securities Limited, ICICI Securities, and Trust Investment Advisors Private Ltd. The NCDs will be listed on the BSE Limited and National Stock Exchange of India Limited (NSE), to provide liquidity to investors. The IIFL Bonds would be issued at face value of Rs 1,000 and the minimum application size is Rs 10,000 across all categories. The public issue opens on August 06, 2019 and closes on August 30, 2019, with an option of early closure. The allotment will be made on first come first served basis.

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