Friday, December 13, 2019

New Jaguar Lifestyle Collection Inspired by Classic Mark 2 Saloon will Unveil for Christmas


* Exclusive apparel and lifestyle accessories celebrate legendary Mark 2 Saloon on its 60th anniversary
* New range includes heritage art prints, ‘ultimate getaway car’  T-shirt, espresso set and zip-up jacket
* The Mark 2 was launched in 1959 and went on to inspire future generations of Jaguar sport saloons
* New collection is part of a Jaguar lifestyle range perfect for Christmas gifts

Jaguar has channeled the timeless design of its legendary Mark 2 saloon for a new range of clothes and accessories – perfect for Christmas.

The lifestyle collection celebrates the famous model’s 60th anniversary with the exceptional attention to detail Jaguar cars have always been renowned for.

A choice of three heritage art prints capture the spirit of the original sports saloon, while a set of four espresso cups feature graphics inspired by the Mark 2’s distinctive twin headlamps.

The Mark 2's role in popular culture is celebrated on a T-shirt with the ‘Ultimate Getaway Car’ printed on the back. Available in three colours, it also has an instantly recognisable graphic of the car's shape. A zip-up cotton jacket features the same stylised image on the inner lining while a cap showcases a second design.

Joe Sinclair, Jaguar Land Rover Director of Branded Goods and Licensing, said: “We wanted to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the legendary Mark 2 in a way that allowed enthusiasts to show their admiration for the car. It’s such an iconic vehicle that this collection will appeal to anyone interested in enduring design and classic vehicles. They are perfect Christmas gifts.”

The Jaguar Mark 2 was launched in 1959 at the Earls Court Motor Show, London, and became an overnight sensation, embodying all three attributes from William Lyons’ famous advertising slogan: Grace, space and pace. It was available with a choice of powerful XK- derived six-cylinder engines, including the top-of-the-range 3.8 l that delivered 164 kW (223 PS) and a top speed of 201 km/h (125 mph).

Along with its reputation for its exceptional on-road performance, the Mark 2 was also part of Jaguar’s motorsport success story, with Roy Salvadori and Graham Hill among the greats to drive it to victory in saloon car races.

New Tool from the Center for AI in Society at USC Aims to Prevent Suicide Among Youth

According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention), the suicide rate for individuals 10 – 24 years has increased 56% between 2007 and 2017. In comparison to the general population, more than half of people experiencing homelessness have had thoughts of suicide or have attempted suicide, the National Health Care for the Homeless Council reported.

Phebe Vayanos, assistant professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering and Computer Science at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering has been enlisting the help of a powerful ally –artificial intelligence– to help mitigate the risk of suicide.

“In this research, we wanted to find ways to mitigate suicidal ideation and death among youth. Our idea was to leverage real-life social network information to build a support network of strategically positioned individuals that can ‘watch-out’ for their friends and refer them to help as needed,” Vayanos said.

Vayanos, an associate director at USC’s Center for Artificial Intelligence in Society (CAIS), and her team have been working over the last couple of years to design an algorithm capable of identifying who in a given real-life social group would be the best persons to be trained as “gatekeepers” capable of identifying warning signs of suicide and how to respond.

Vayanos and Ph.D. candidate Aida Rahmattalabi, the lead author of the study “Exploring Algorithmic Fairness in Robust Graph Covering Problems,” investigated the potential of social connections such as friends, relatives, and acquaintances to help mitigate the risk of suicide. Their paper will be presented at the Thirty-third Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS) in December 2019.

“We want to ensure that a maximum number of people are being watched out for, taking into account resource limitations and uncertainties of open world deployment. For example, if some of the people in the network are not able to make it to the gatekeeper training, we still want to have a robust support network,” Vayanos said.

For this study, Vayanos and Rahmattalabi looked at the web of social relationships of young people experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles, given that 1 in 2 youth who are homeless have considered suicide.

“Our algorithm can improve the efficiency of suicide prevention trainings for this particularly vulnerable population,” Vayanos said.

For Vayanos, efficiency translates into developing a model and algorithm that can stretch limited resources as far as they can go. In this scenario, the limited resources are the human gatekeepers. This algorithm tries to plan how these individuals can be best positioned and trained in a network to watch out for others.

“If you are strategic,” says Vayanos, “you can cover more people and you can have a more robust network of support.”

“Through this study, we can also help inform policymakers who are making decisions regarding funding on suicide prevention initiatives; for example, by sharing with them the minimum number of people who need to receive the gatekeeper training to ensure that all youth have at least one trained friend who can watch out for them,” Vayanos said.

 “Our aim is to protect as many youths as possible,” said lead author, Rahmattalabi.

An important goal when deploying this A.I. system is to ensure fairness and transparency.

“We often work in environments that have limited resources, and this tends to disproportionately affect historically marginalized and vulnerable populations,” said co-author on the study Anthony Fulginiti, an assistant professor of social work at the University of Denver who received his Ph.D. from USC, having begun his research with Eric Rice, founding director of USC CAIS.

“This algorithm can help us find a subset of people in a social network that gives us the best chance that youth will be connected to someone who has been trained when dealing with resource constraints and other uncertainties,” said Fulginiti.

This work is particularly important for vulnerable populations, say the researchers, particularly for youth who are experiencing homelessness.

“"One of the surprising things we discovered in our experiments based on social networks of homeless youth is that existing A.I. algorithms, if deployed without customization, result in discriminatory outcomes by up to 68% difference in protection rate across races. The goal is to make this algorithm as fair as possible and adjust the algorithm to protect those groups that are worse off,” Rahmattalabi said.

The USC CAIS researchers want to ensure that “gatekeeper” coverage of the more vulnerable groups is as high as possible. Their algorithm reduced the bias in coverage in real-life social networks of homeless youth by as much as 20%.

Said Rahmattalabi: “Not only does our solution advance the field of computer science by addressing a computationally hard problem, but also it pushes the boundaries of social work and risk management science by bringing in computational methods into design and deployment of prevention programs.”

The research is supported by the National Science Foundation and the Army Research Office and involves collaborators: Eric Rice, associate professor at USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work and founding director of the USC Center for Artificial Intelligence in Society; Anthony Fulginiti, an assistant professor at the University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work; Milind Tambe, professor of computer science at Harvard University; Brryian Wilder, Ph.D. student in the Department of Computer Science at Harvard; and Amulya Yadav (’18 Ph.D.), assistant professor of computer science at Penn State University.

Tata Motors Announces the Launch of New Generation Prima and Ultra Trucks in Kuwait

Tata Motors, one of the world’s leading automobile brands today officially launched its new generation range of Prima and Ultra trucks in Kuwait, specially designed to meet the changing customer needs.

The world smart Tata Prima with its power, sustainable speed, safety and reliability, best-in-class, aggregates, cabin features and comfort, is designed for long-distance/ hours of transportation. While, the Tata Ultra offers faster turnaround time and enhanced profitability for any goods carrying business, making it an ideal business utility vehicle  partner for movement of materials across distances.

The launch of the new products come in line with the successful delivery by Tata Motors for orders from Waste Management and Cleaning Companies operating for the Kuwait Municipality. Tata Motors bagged the contracts that includes the use of its new generation Prima and Ultra trucks for municipality cleaning projects for the next 5 years.

Tata Motors emerged as the single largest OEM to supply trucks spanning the heavy, medium and light categories for various applications for usage by the cleaning companies in the Kuwait municipality. The quality of the trucks, and the strong service footprint, makes it the perfect partner to support the Kuwaiti government's drive for modern and efficient civic infrastructure development. It is also the largest single order of Tata Prima trucks and is thereby setting new benchmarks for performance and success in international markets.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Rudrarup Maitra, Head - International Business, Commercial Vehicles, Tata Motors Ltd. said, “Tata Motors is a well-known brand in Kuwait.  With our new range of future ready products, we will continue to play an active role in the commercial vehicles industry and work closely with our customers here to develop and bring world class products and solutions catering to varied needs of the country.

The recent order is reflective of our commitment to be an integral participant in the international landscape as well. The vehicles will help boost brand visibility for Tata Motors. Further we hope to continue our long and rewarding partnership with the Waste Management and Cleaning companies operating in the Kuwait Municipality. We also conducted training workshops for the technicians and drivers to familiarize them with the vehicles, to have better drivability and performance.

Having been extensively tested to confirm with global standards, the next-generation range of Tata PRIMA commercial vehicles boasts world renowned aggregates and build quality, higher emission norms, comfort with driving dynamics, optimized drivelines and continues to offer advantages of a Tata Motors commercial vehicle of lowest total cost of ownership.

The Tata ULTRA comes with superior performance, a comfortable walk-through cabin, new generation driveline with optimized aggregates for higher performance and multiple load-body configurations, offering customers the advantage of increased productivity and longer life. It gives value for money and durability with TAT (Turnaround Time) hence ensuring lowest cost of operations.

We are confident that through our trusted partnership with Al Zayani Company, we will be successful in establishing a long-term relationship with our customers.”

Mr. Nail Alzayani, Managing Director, Al Zayani Group said “The new next-generation range of commercial vehicles by Tata Motors, the Tata Prima & Tata Ultra brand are shaped by technology, and is in every sense, giving GCC customers competitive business advantages, with the trusted credentials of the Tata Motors brand. We cherish our partnership with Tata Motors and are geared to deliver a blend of high quality and unique value to our customers in Kuwait”.

L&T and Komatsu Launch Global Hydraulic Excavator at Excon 2019

Komatsu India Pvt Ltd and Larsen & Toubro have put together an impressive show at Excon 2019, South Asia’s largest construction equipment exhibition, showcasing technological strengths and service capabilities.

Komatsu, Scania and L&T have put up a display of 19 machines at Excon 2019 that opened on 10th December. The star of the show is Komatsu PC210-10MO Hydraulic Excavator, the next generation machine, which has been launched at Excon today.

The machine was jointly launched by Mr. Arvind K. Garg, Executive Vice-President, Construction & Mining Machinery, L&T, and Mr. M. Kamizono, Managing Director, KIPL, amidst a large gathering of customers, financiers and dealers who came to witness the launch. 

Komatsu PC210-10MO is expected to revolutionize the 20-ton class excavator segment. This truly efficient and eco-friendly machine is 20 per cent more productive and is 20 per cent more fuel efficient than its predecessor, PC210-8M0.

The new model is the result of Komatsu’s cutting-edge technology and has been specially developed to suit Indian conditions. It promises to give a new dimension to the industry, which has been looking for a highly productive machine to scale new peaks in performance.

Coinciding with the occasion, L&T launched Komatsu G2-LI, a multipurpose grease designed for all components covering majority of the Komatsu range of construction equipment. It is an extreme pressure lithium grease with excellent mechanical stability, which means that this grease maintains its consistency for long hours.

Apart from these, NTG (next truck generation) Scania G440 XT Heavy Tipper is on display in the L&T Pavilion at Excon 2019. With its unique modular system, Scania G440 will deliver higher productivity as well as customized transport solutions. The tipper is integrated with upgraded powertrain resulting in higher load carrying capacity, fuel efficiency, higher uptime, better fuel economy and operator comfort.

Other Komatsu machines on display in the L&T Pavilion include a wide range of hydraulic excavators -- PC71, PC130, PC300-8, PC350-8 and PC450 that are popular in the construction industry and manufactured by Komatsu India Pvt Ltd at its state-of-the-art facility in Oragadam, Chennai.

D85 Crawler Dozer and GD535 Motor Grader, imported from Komatsu Ltd, are also in the bouquet of offerings.

These machines are for multiple applications such as earthwork, land development, irrigation, blue metal quarry and have already set new benchmarks across the industry.

All Komatsu machines are digitalized and equipped with Machine Tracking systems such as KOMTRAX, which enable the users monitor the equipment health and bring in efficiency.

As part of the Make in India, L&T Construction Equipment Ltd offers a wide range of road machinery ~ L&T 9020sx Wheel Loader, L&T 1190 / L&T 990HF/ L&T 491 Vibratory Compactors, L&T 2490 Pneumatic Tyred Roller, Hydraulic Paver and Skid Steer Loader. These equipment incorporate world-class features and are fitted with L&T DigiEye for online tracking.


Larsen & Toubro is an Indian multinational engaged in technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services with over USD 21 billion in revenue. It operates in over 30 countries worldwide. A strong, customer–focused approach and the constant quest for top-class quality have enabled L&T to attain and sustain leadership in its major lines of business for eight decades.

Sister Bini Mol T Lead Nursing Supervisor – Malathi Manipal Hospitals Awarded Florence Nightingale Award 2019

Ms. Bini Mol T, Lead Nursing Supervisor at Malathi Manipal Hospital was awarded the prestigious Florence Nightingale Award 2019 by the Honourable Chief Minister of Karnataka Shri. B. S. Yediyurappa today.

The Florence Nightingale Medal is the highest international distinction that can be awarded to a nurse. It recognizes exceptional courage and devotion towards caring for victims of a natural disaster, exemplary services, creative and pioneering spirit in the areas of public health or nursing education.

Sharing her happiness on receiving the prestigious Florence Nightingale Award, Sister Bini Mol T Lead Nursing Supervisor, Malathi Manipal Hospitals said, “Iam extremely happy and privileged to receive the prestigious Florence Nightingale award and honoured  for the recognition. I take this opportunity to thank Manipal Hospitals for keeping faith in my work and provided me the opportunity to be part of Manipal family. My heart felt gratitude to the Florence Nightingale committee for being instrumental in recognizing the nurses for their hard work. Without them, it would not have been possible to achieve such a prestigious award. This award inspires me to contribute much more to society.”

Sister Bini Mol T joined Manipal Hospitals in the year 2008 and has been associated with the Hospital for 11 years. She initially joined in the OPD and Emergency department but later moved the ladder as the lead nurse due to her relentless and selfless service.  She also played a crucial role  in evacuating the patients during a fire incident at Carlton Towers, Old Airport Road in the year 2010 and at Malathi Manipal Hospitals in the year 2017.

Sister Bini is the coordinator for all the health camps for old age homes and orphanage. She was also working closely on the Rubella and measles vaccination drive by Government of Karnataka and vaccinated close to 800 children.

Trend Micro Invests in Cloud Security Offerings: Steve Quane

Trend Micro Incorporated, a global leader in cybersecurity solutions provides optimized protection for workloads running on Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, VMware and Docker, allowing customers to automate deployment for streamlined compliance and seamlessly secure DevOps.

In this regard, Trend Micro has received the highest score in the current offering and strategy categories, and among the second highest scores in the market presence category, in The Forrester Wave™: Cloud Workload Security, Q4 2019. Trend Micro believes that this recognition underscores the leadership of its cloud offerings and strategy as the peak of the cloud security market.

“We’ve invested significantly in our cloud security offerings, and I view this report as validation of our vision, continued innovation, and strong execution,” said Steve Quane, executive vice president of network defense and hybrid cloud security at Trend Micro. “We were one of the first security vendors to predict the growing appetite for cloud workload security solutions, and I think we have hit the bullseye on combining technology, partnerships and seamless integration of acquisitions over time.”

In addition to its comprehensiveness, Forrester recognized Trend Micro’s cloud security offering in multiple areas including:

“The solution is ideal for large firms with broad Cloud Workload Security (CWS) needs across workloads, hypervisors and containers.”
“The OS level, agent-based protections are very strong and include malware and memory protection, file integrity monitoring, host-based firewall, intrusion detection/intrusion prevention, log inspection and application binary control,” the report noted.
“Role-based access control (RBAC) is very flexible for administrators. Container runtime and pre-runtime checks are comprehensive, and the solution exposes a broad API for Deep Security policy control.”
Forrester rigorously evaluated 13 competitive security vendors across 30 criterion and in three distinct areas: current offering, strategy and market presence.

Trend Micro believes that this report complements another recently published recognition by another top analyst firm. The company was named the #1 vendor in Software-Defined Compute (SDC) workload protection by IDC in their new independent report: Worldwide Software Defined Compute Workload Security Market Shares, 2018 (DOC #US45638919, NOVEMBER 2019). This report revealed Trend Micro achieved a market share lead of 35.5%, almost triple its nearest competitor in 2018.

Lighting Major Signify Achieves Carbon Neutral Operations in India

Signify, the world leader in lighting, has achieved carbon neutrality in India, which is a part of its growth markets. The achievement is part of a total of five more markets – specifically ASEAN, Far East, India, Indonesia and Pacific – achieving carbon neutrality, boosting Signify’s number of markets with carbon-neutral operations to 15 out of a total of 19. This brings Signify a big step closer towards achieving 100% carbon-neutral operations in 2020, one of the goals of its “Brighter Lives, Better World” sustainability program.

By focusing on energy efficiency, renewable energy consumption and office space optimization, the five markets have reduced their overall carbon emissions by 19% in 2019. This includes a reduction of 33% from non-industrial sites, 17% from industrial sites, 32% from business travel and 18% from logistics. Signify offsets its remaining emissions through contributions to projects that have a positive environmental and social impact, including small- to medium-sized wind farms in India and a hydro plant in Vietnam that operates without using a dam.

“I’m extremely proud of the relentless commitment of all our employees that resulted in this great milestone, showing that carbon neutrality is possible and that it is possible today,” said Sumit Padmakar Joshi, Market Leader – India at Signify. “We hope that our achievements inspire other companies around us and we call upon them to join initiatives that will result in global carbon neutrality by 2050.”

‘Brighter Lives, Better World’

Signify introduced its “Brighter Lives, Better World” sustainability program in 2016, setting ambitious sustainability goals for 2020, consisting of two pillars:

1. Sustainable revenues:

80% of revenues will come from sustainable products, systems and services by 2020
More than 2 billion LED lamps and luminaires delivered by 2020

2. Sustainable operations:

100% carbon neutral for operations
100% use of renewable electricity
Zero waste to landfill in manufacturing
Strive for a safe and healthy workplace with a total recordable case rate of less than 0.35
Ensuring a sustainable supply chain with a minimum supplier performance rate of 90%

As part of the company’s leadership in energy efficiency measures Signify is committed to the World Green Building Council’s initiative to have all of its buildings be carbon neutral by 2030. In addition, Signify supports The Climate Group’s EV100 initiative to operate a 100% electric and hybrid lease fleet by 2030 and its RE100 initiative to scale up the use of renewable electricity. To further support these initiatives, during Climate Week New York 2019, Signify called on companies and countries to join the Three Percent Club, so carbon neutrality can be achieved by 2050.

Signify was named Industry Leader in the Electrical Components and Equipment category of the 2019 Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), receiving recognition for all its sustainability improvements for the third consecutive year.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

NuTy Now Offers Nutritious, Tasty, Hygienic HomeStyle Foods for Bangaloreans at Affordable Prices

Tulita Ahara Private Limited (Sanskrit for Balanced-Diet), the company behind India’s first Food-as-a-Service brand, NuTy, offers authentic HomeStyle ready-meals through its omni-channel outlets across the city. Today, the company announced their target full coverage of Bangalore with 500 omni retail outlets by March 2020. Its brand, NuTy (abbreviated from ‘Nutritious and Tasty’) currently has presence in 163 outlets in Bangalore and has served over 225,000 meals since its expansion few months ago.

NuTy creates micro food-entrepreneurs and tech-enables them to serve customers through their proprietary WhatsApp based ecommerce platform and food-delivery partners like Swiggy, Zomato and UberEats. NuTy has developed and tested about 100 regional recipe based heat-and-eat meals that are kept fresh through proprietary HPP chilling technology that helps long-term preservation of the food without using artificial ingredients, while retaining its nutrition and taste.

Announcing the quick climb in numbers for NuTy outlets, Ray Nathan co-founder of NuTy, excitedly says, "NuTy’s authentic, affordable, nutritious, tasty, hygienic food with a long shelf-life helps satiate appetite, reduce waste and create livelihoods all the while meeting the basic needs of a common person. NuTy blends the ‘art of food’ creation with latest in food science to curate authentic ready-meals that can be delivered through next-gen technology. This we believe is the future of affordable and nutritious food."

Naveen Chander, co-founder, NuTy also added "Our company was formed with a vision to provide nutritious and tasty meals for everyone, one that is a balanced-diet and yet at an affordable rate. Such a combination has never been thought possible before. Our model is possible because we source all the raw material and ingredients directly from the source and which turn into curated authentic regional meals. An essential part of the NuTy model is that of creating food micro-entrepreneurs who will be the delivery points to the consumers of NuTy meals. Apart from meals, NuTY is a livelihood platform and we hope to create 200,000 food micro-entrepreneurs by 2023.”

NuTy also has larger volume packs for HoReCa (Hotels, Restaurants and Cafes) wherein a small to mid-sized food outlet can increase its food offerings by reducing their overheads.

About NuTy:

NuTy is India’s first Food-as-a-service brand offering HomeStyle ready-meals based on regional recipes. Founded by Ray Nathan and Naveen Chander, NuTy is the one of the first food brands in Asia to use HPP technology in fresh curries resulting in superior taste, quality and nutrition at the same time. NuTy Ready-Meals are available as take-away at hundreds of retail stores and on food-delivery platforms like Swiggy, Zomato and UberEats.

LTI Wins Multiyear Engagement with Hoist Finance AB for the Swedish Financial Services Company

Larsen & Toubro Infotech Ltd., a global technology consulting and digital solutions company has won a multiyear engagement with Swedish financial services company, Hoist Finance AB to manage its IT Operations. With presence in 11 European countries, Hoist Finance is headquartered in Sweden and is listed on Nasdaq OMX Stockholm exchange.

LTI will leverage its operate to transform approach to enhance stability, security and efficiency of Hoist Finance’s IT environment.

Klaus-Anders Nysteen, CEO, Hoist Finance, said “To execute on our strategy and become the digital leader in our industry, requires a multitude of thought leadership and professionalism as well as extensive technological experience and capabilities. With a strong delivery record and focus on increased stability, security and automation, LTI is the perfect fit for us to enhance the user experience for both our customers and employees and to accelerate our digital developments. We are looking forward to continuing on our digital journey through our multiyear partnership with LTI.”

Sudhir Chaturvedi, President & Executive Board Member, LTI, said “To be the breakaway leader in their domain, banking and financial services enterprises need to offer superior customer experience, and operate with extreme efficiency. We look forward to partnering with Hoist Finance to fulfill these objectives with our robust offerings that enable companies to use superior operations as a lever of transformation.”

LTI has a strong presence in the Nordic region and partners with leading companies across industries. Company has recently setup a proximity center in Poland to support clients in the region.

ACT Fibernet Ties Up with EVAM to Launch Chennai’s First Dedicated Comedy Club - South of Comedy (SOCO)

ACT Fibernet, India’s largest fiber-focused wired broadband ISP (Internet Service Provider), today announced its partnership with EVAM to launch Chennai’s first dedicated comedy club – ACT Fibernet SOCO (South of Comedy) at Bamboo Bar, Savera Hotel, Chennai.

The stand-up comedy art is increasingly gaining popularity in Chennai. Having produced home-grown talents like Karthik Kumar, Arvind SA, Alexander Babu with global recognition from Indian diaspora, Chennai is transitioning into one of the preferred destinations for high-quality stand-up comedy. EVAM, Chennai’s biggest theatre and arts platform has been driving the standup comedy movement in South India for the last 9 years enabling people to discover their calling.  South of Comedy (SOCO) is a one of a kind initiative by the group aiming to provide a dedicated platform to stand-up comedians and further cultivate the comedy culture in the city.

South of Comedy (SOCO) aspires to be a one stop source for audience to catch all their favorite stars and enjoy fun curated events all seven days a week. It will also act as a stage for upcoming comedians to showcase their skills and entertain the local audience.

ACT Fibernet, through this partnership intends to promote the comedy circuit in Chennai and will provide an exclusive “ACT Fibernet SOCO” branded venue for continued entertainment and engagement. Further, as the company’s new brand promise #Advantage Entertainment, ACT Fibernet and EVAM together will host dedicated nights once in a month exclusively for ACT customers giving them a better dose of comedy.

Speaking on the partnership, Sandeep Gupta, COO, ACT Fibernet said, “Stand-up comedy is extremely becoming popular in Chennai especially among the millennials. EVAM has been driving the movement for last 9 years and we are excited to partner with them for their new venture. Together, we aim to deliver top class entertainment and generate opportunities for new talents”.

Commenting on the partnership, Sunil Vishnu K, Director, EVAM said, “ACT Fibernet is one of the most reputed broadband service providers in Chennai, and we are delighted to have them on board as our partner. ACT Fibernet will play a critical role in providing our customers world-class experiences and we hope together we will revitalise the comedy culture in the city.”

Drip Aims to Develop a Global Platform to Simplify Trade for SMEs by Leveraging Data and Technology

Drip Capital, a US-based fintech company, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Buying Agents Association (BAA), a non-profit organization representing Buying Agents/houses and Liaison offices from all sectors including Accessories, Apparel, Carpets, Handicrafts, Jewellery, Leather, Processed Foods, Textiles & Furnishings, and other labour-intensive sectors.

The two organisations will partner to provide stakeholders from India’s export ecosystem with training in technology and invoice factoring. The partnership will give small-and-medium-sized exporters exposure to fintech solutions, widely considered to be one of the biggest disruptors in cross-border trade. Small exporters, who are often overlooked by banks or are otherwise unable to access the traditional banking system, can leverage these solutions to their benefit. The Drip-BAA partnership aims to help exporters and buying agents understand these opportunities better.

The existing paper-based trade finance system is inefficient and biased against smaller exporters. These exporters spend time in battling bureaucracy, slow processing times and demands for collateral – time they cannot afford to waste. This is what Drip Capital aims to fix, with its focus on collateral-free, technology-enabled finance. “Our idea is to create an automated platform that would address the working capital needs of SMEs, not just in India, but across the world. What we want is to level the playing field for SMEs everywhere and give them easy access to trade finance,” said Mr. Pushkar Mukewar, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Drip Capital.

Helping SME exporters with simplified trade finance also feeds into a larger goal of giving the country’s overall economy and GDP growth a boost. Multilateral agencies like the World Bank have found that economies gain immensely when trade increases, especially in the MSME sector.

However, trade-related challenges cannot be tackled by private companies alone. BAA is a central body that brings together Buying Agents, the exporting community, and customers on a common platform. “As an association, BAA is committed to spreading awareness and disseminating usable insights to the export fraternity in India. Despite rapid growth seen in recent times, the export industry in India is highly unorganized & is marred by an acute knowledge gap, which adversely impacts the productivity & margins of the exporters,” said Mr. Manoj Rana, Governing Body Member, BAA.

Ms. Anchal Kansal, General Secretary, BAA, added, “As an organization, BAA endeavours to take prudent steps towards bridging the existing knowledge gap and encouraging best practices in the industry. In this regard, the Knowledge Sessions with Drip Capital on collateral-free export finance are a collaborative step that will help exporters learn how they can increase their revenue and cash flow along with mitigating risk by availing a ‘factoring agency’.”

Under the provisions of the memorandum, BAA, in partnership with Drip Capital, will conduct a series of awareness raising events with the export community across the country. The memorandum was signed by Ms. Anchal Kansal, General Secretary, BAA and Mr. Pushkar Mukewar, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Drip Capital.

Drip Capital has financed over $500 million of international trade originating from India so far, helping exporters in 60+ cities across the country ship products to buyers in more than 50 countries around the world. The partnership with BAA will help Drip reach out to even more SME exporters in need of working capital and help them create economic development and growth across their businesses.

AI Company Haptik Develops Virtual Assistant for Tata Mutual Fund

Haptik, one of the world’s leading Conversational AI companies and a subsidiary of Reliance Industries, recently developed an Intelligent Virtual Assistant (IVA) for Tata Mutual Fund, with a scope of managing 70% of query inflow for its customer support team. The virtual assistant, named Professor Simply Simple, makes understanding mutual funds and other intricacies effortless, that can otherwise be difficult to comprehend for people just starting out on the investment journey.

While the initial mandate from TMF was to replicate their available website content on the IVA, Haptik proactively engaged in a holistic research process to improve the assistant’s capabilities and final impact it could have. The company undertook a complete review of TMF’s call-center data and identified that 70% of the customer queries were for about 10 similar questions or scenarios. Most queries were around account information, NAV updates, valuations, buying funds and SIP purchase and redemptions. Within 3 months, Haptik developed an IVA that could swiftly and seamlessly resolve these routine, repetitive queries and free customer support team to solve complex queries that required their dedicated attention. For NAV notifications, Haptik also proposed the deployment of an IVA on WhatsApp.

“Having realized that we’re moving into a world driven by Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, deploying Conversational AI was the obvious next step in our product roadmap. In our search for able partners, Haptik stood out because of their depth of knowledge in the conversational AI space and extensive experience in the BFSI sector. However what really excited us was that they weren’t just a chatbot platform they offered full-stack of services which included analytics, bot-builder, multi-channel integration, and integration with WhatsApp. - Said Tata Spokesperson.

Elaborating on the process Kartik Poddar, SVP & Business Head,  Haptik said, “The virtual assistant we developed for TMF was a typical example of how conversational AI can help enterprises optimize processes resulting in cost reduction and increased ROI. Mutual Funds investment is a complex domain and apart from resolving support queries, the virtual assistant also helps with investor education using Haptik’s intelligent prompts and content flows. While support automation is the first step, we will enable transactions in the next phase, thus making Professor Simply Simple truly an Intelligent Virtual Assistant.”

Prof. Simply Simple is an affable, guide-by-the-side rather than sage-on-the-stage kind of virtual assistant, and users have reported feeling greatly satisfied with the responses received. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Wipro Recognized as a Leader in Artificial Intelligence Consultancies by Independent Research Firm

Wipro Limited, a leading global information technology, consulting and business process services company, has been recognized as a “Leader” by global research and advisory firm Forrester Research Inc. in its report, The Forrester Wave: AI Consultancies, Q3 2019.

The firm evaluated participating companies by researching, analyzing and scoring them on 23 different criteria across three main categories – current offering, strategy and market presence.

The report highlights that, “Wipro comes to the table with strategic approaches and best practices to engage the right internal experts and stakeholders, according to clients.” The report also states that Wipro’s “emphasis on culture in the engagement is its strength and translates into helping clients develop their own AI culture and Centre of Excellence.” Additionally, the report notes that “Client case studies demonstrate Wipro is not only about AI theory; its developers do a lot of basic blocking and tackling.”

Addressing pricing concerns in what is a niche and specialized skill, Wipro offers a number of value-based pricing models designed around product delivery. The company leverages a broad range of Intellectual property (IP)-based platform offerings augmented by a flexible business model through Topcoder, enabling clients to tap into data science and development skills on demand. It has also extended Wipro HOLMES AI platform and Data Discovery Platform (DDP) to support executive stakeholder requirements, delivering business-centric and industry-oriented solutions.

Commenting on Wipro’s recognition in the Forrester report, Jayant Prabhu, Vice President and Global Head, Data, Analytics & AI, Wipro Limited said, “We have been at the forefront of successfully driving business innovation and transformation for our clients towards being Intelligent Enterprises with an innovative Topcoder delivery model. Augmenting our integrated AI, design, data and analytics narrative, backed by our domain consulting experience and powerful platforms, DDP and Wipro HOLMES™, we are succeeding in increasing traction in the AI and analytics space.”

Phil Dunmore, Managing Partner and Head of Global Consulting Group, Wipro Limited said, “AI and Intelligent Automation is changing the very fabric of society, business, and governance. It is disrupting processes, creating new business models and delivering exceptional customer experiences. One of the major hurdles in harnessing the power of AI by businesses is the challenge posed by change adoption and scaling AI culture to enterprise level. Using AI led Automation Advisory and Wipro HOLMES™ platform, we help enterprises overcome these challenges by creating outcome-based roadmaps, agile delivery, innovative service models and seamless customer experience. Our customers have spoken on our behalf in this report and we believe that being recognized as a Leader in the Forrester Wave is a testament to our AI and Automation transformation and consulting services capabilities.”

Older PCs can Lead to 96 Hours of Productivity Loss for SMBs in South India, Reveals Microsoft Study

Small and medium businesses (SMBs) in South India with PCs that are more than four years old and running older operating systems can experience significantly reduced workplace productivity as compared to newer PCs. Not just work efficiencies, older PCs expose organizations to security vulnerabilities and IT threats. Recovering data and maintaining business continuity is among the topmost challenges for SMBs in the South. In the last year alone, 25% of SMBs surveyed in South India said they had experienced a security breach.

Nearly 40% of SMBs in South India are using outdated PCs and more than half (62%) of them are on older versions of Windows. These findings were revealed in the latest Microsoft study[1] in partnership with global SMB IT market research and analyst organization TechAisle, which polled almost 2,000 SMBs across Asia Pacific.

SMBs in the South who have embraced a modern workplace strategy have experienced multiple benefits for businesses and employees, including higher productivity, better security and reduced operating costs.

89% of SMBs in the South saw improved IT efficiency by adopting newer PCs
75% of all SMBs agreed that adopting newer PCs enabled better usage experience through cloud and mobility solutions
91% of SMBs in South India have reduced overall maintenance costs with modern PCs
84% of SMBs in Pune agreed that newer PCs helped them with enhanced security and data protection and 81% benefited from increased employee productivity

“Technology can be a real enabler for businesses, both small and large, and SMBs need to recognise the value that IT investment can bring to their present and future growth. SMBs employ over 110 million people in India, significantly contributing to India’s economic growth. Microsoft wants to work alongside SMBs in India to help them realise their ambitions and succeed in this competitive marketplace,” said Farhana Haque, Group Director – Devices, Microsoft India.

Narrowing the adoption gap

According to the study, the continued delay in SMBs’ adoption of newer technological infrastructure across business functions, was due to factors such as perceived app incompatibility and low awareness of must-have capabilities in new PCs. Three-fourths of SMBs surveyed in South India (75%) said they did not have a PC refresh policy nor were they actively pursuing it.

However, the reality is that the lack of a strategic PC refresh policy can result in greater repercussions in the long run. SMBs in the South have experienced older PCs being repaired almost four times than that of new PCs. This can amount to at least 96 hours’ worth of productive time lost.

To drive their business objectives, SMBs can refresh their older PCs as it provides security patches and regular OS updates for optimized use. Concerns over app compatibility is addressed with Windows 10, the most app-compatible version of Windows-to-date with best practices including app telemetry, ISV partnerships for diagnostic data and troubleshooting as well as looping feedback cycles. With the upcoming Windows 7 End of Support, SMBs need to make their shift towards newer PCs and operating systems as users will no longer receive security updates or support for PCs running on Windows 7. This includes new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options, and online technical content updates.

Mahindra Displays Blazo X Tippers Range at the Excon, 2019

Mahindra Truck and Bus, a part of the USD 20.7 billion Mahindra Group, displayed its range of outperforming tippers, at the 10th edition of the EXCON Exhibition – the International Construction Equipment and Technology Trade Fair being held in Bengaluru. These tippers are best suited for construction related applications.

Speaking on the occasion, Vinod Sahay, CEO, Mahindra Truck and Bus and Construction Equipment Division, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. said “At Mahindra Truck and Bus (MTB), customer centricity and continuous product innovation have been at the core of our business. Construction is an intense, time-consuming process. Ensuring that our vehicles operate continually for nearly 18 to 20 hours per day is the key to the profitability of our customers.”

Mr. Sahay further added, “Given this insight, the Mahindra BLAZO X tippers are designed for higher levels of utilization. Not only that, the BLAZO X 28T tipper comes with guaranteed higher mileage, highest pulling power, rugged aggregates, lowest maintenance and best-in-class cabin. With competitive product superiority, mileage guarantee and a 96% uptime guarantee, the BLAZO X 28 tipper is a game-changing offering”.

Apart from the BLAZO X range of HCV Tippers, MTB also displayed its LCV tipper, the Loadking OPTIMO. This model with Its compact overall architecture is ideal for last-mile applications like sand mining and construction.

About BLAZO X Range of Tippers

The BLAZO X range of tippers comes with Mahindra’s patented Fuel Smart Technology featuring switches that help choose the power delivery, to suit the operating terrain and load conditions. With this technology, MTB is eliminating the need for maintaining different kinds of vehicles for different needs. BLAZO X tippers offer best-in-class transferable warranty of 6 years or 6,000 hours which is applicable to the Engine, Gearbox, Rear Axle, Cabin, and Chassis Frame.

Along with this comprehensive offering, the BLAZO X tipper comes with a next-gen, cutting-edge, fleet telematics solution - Mahindra iMAXX, offering fleet operators many smart features, which makes their business even more profitable and tension-free by providing real-time information of the enroute vehicles. Some of the features of this system include – Predictive vehicle health monitoring, Fuel theft prevention and Ad Blue consumption monitoring, driver behaviour monitoring, operation reports automation, and Location tracking, among other features.

For its BLAZO X tipper customers, MTB provides comprehensive, round the clock Service Support, which includes onsite support of mechanics and spares to a fleet of 10+ vehicles. Additionally, Mobile Workshop support along with critical, fast-moving Spare Parts is also made available.

MTB – All new initiatives

While most of the new engines bring in complexity, MTBD is committed to offering a Simplified BSVI experience to its customers. The BLAZO X will be available to customers with minimal changes, offering a hassle-free switch to the new BSVI norms. The company is all set to launch 18 more variants in BSVI from 5 tonnes to 18 tonnes in the ICV segment of its recently launched FURIO model range.

The company has recently operationalized its 3rd service corridor Chennai – Kolkata on a 1,700 kms long stretch, catering to 20% of India’s truck movement. This is the third such service corridor after the 1,400 kms long Delhi - Mumbai and 3,800 kms long North-South Service Corridor from Kashmir to Kanyakumari.

All these three service corridors namely Delhi – Mumbai, Kashmir- Kanyakumari & Chennai – Kolkata will further strengthen the after-sales network, comprising  27, 41 & 28  touchpoints respectively, with a guaranteed service reach of 2 hours (Delhi – Mumbai) and 4 hours (Kashmir- Kanyakumari & Chennai – Kolkata) or customers get a Rs. 500 compensation for every hour of delay.

The MTB model range is supported by an ever-growing, and wide service and spares network comprising over 100 3S dealerships, 210 authorized service centres, a wide spares network of retail outlets and 39 strategically located Parts Plazas.

When Onions Trump Over A Trip to Goa!

Times are interesting, the Onions have again captured the narrative of the nation and shown who the king is!!! The importance of onions is all too well known, now it is measurable too. In the battle of choice between onions and a trip to Goa - guess who came up trumps?

While the social media is abuzz with memes and jokes on surging onion prices, AbhiBus, India’s fastest growing online marketplace for bus ticketing, has caught people's fancy with an interesting offer. The leading bus ticketing platform has introduced a scheme where the customers booking their bus tickets on can participate in a contest where they could either win an all-expense paid trip to Goa, win an iPhone or an e-bike or 3kgs of Onions. No points for guessing how popular the onion option is proving to be.

More than 54% opted for Onions as their prize ever since the offer was up on 10th December while Goa option was opted by 46%. Clearly customers are willing to place their bets on Onions over Goa or other aspirational options - reflecting how onions shape their daily lives.

This Onion offer caught people’s attention with no promotions at all. Every day AbhiBus will announce 20 lucky winners and will deliver the jackpot (3 kgs of onions) to their homes. Rules for participation are simple, anyone booking their tickets on till 15th Dec can enter into the contest by selecting their preferred option.

Commenting on the idea and the revelations, Mr. Rohit Sharma, COO AbhiBus said, “AbhiBus is constantly innovating to provide customers with solutions and offers that meet their ever-changing needs including making travel fun and enjoyable. Our priority is to keep the customer in the centre to offer a strong customer support, fast no questions asked refunds using UPI. The contest around onions is an example of the customer centric approach and the response we are getting to it testifies our ability to meet customer needs”

Before this, whenever AbhiBus ran an offer that had Goa trip as a win option, it always trumped all other prizes on offer, but this is the first-time consumers relegated Goa to the second spot.

Year 2020 Predictions for the Indian IT Industry: 3i Infotech

By Mr. Padmanabhan Iyer, Managing Director and Global CEO, 3i Infotech

With digital transformation gaining traction and the acceleration of next-gen technologies such as Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) and others, organisations are becoming future-ready.

The Indian IT industry will be marching at a greater pace than ever towards Industry 4.0 by adhering to future technologies through digital transformation. Gartner estimates that IT spending in India will total $94 billion in 2020, an increase of 6.6% compared to the current levels.

Here are some of the top technology trends to watch out for in 2020 -

Intelligent Automation (RPA and AI) – moving to a collaborative model

As cognitive technology deployments mature, value-centric activities will gain mindshare in the future. Combining cognitive technologies would allow bots to work in more complex scenarios that would typically require human judgment or decision making.

The investment of global enterprises in Intelligent Automation (IA) is on the rise with BFSI, retail and consumer packaged goods (CPG) being the key driving sectors.

While ML, predictive analytics and autonomics are moving up the maturity curve, AI-enabled chatbots and virtual assistants are already being used widely. Gartner predicts that 25% of customer service operations will be using virtual customer assistants by 2020.

24/7/365 business processing with seamless automation is feasible with an AI-enabled ERP. Integrating ERP with RPA technology can replace mundane and repetitive processes with nimble and agile process automation to achieve quick ROI. As per estimates, 40% of RPA adopters moving beyond experimentation with AI-enabled processes.

Hybrid Cloud Computing – adoption moving to newer areas

Global cloud computing spending is predicted to almost double by 2022. Hybrid cloud adoption saw a big rise in recent years, with an expected CAGR of 17%. The security features on cloud have become promising and it is becoming a priority to safeguard and protect application data and infrastructure.

High cloud adoption is observed in finance and accounting, supply chain and logistics, and IT management. The emerging areas are customer management, marketing, procurement and manufacturing and operations. On demand scalability and optimal utilization as per demands can facilitate cost savings by migrating to an ERP on cloud.

Internet of Things – moving to cloud-edge architecture

Investments in IoT technology services is growing faster than that in IoT products. Cloud service providers, analytics and infrastructure providers are driving the IoT solutions market. As a technological shift, IoT is moving from a centralized to a cloud-edge architecture and moving away from conventional processor chip enabling new edge architecture.

In the Indian market, 20 billion devices are to be connected to IoT by 2021. IoT is growing at a rapid pace and its adoption is spreading into various industries such as telecom, healthcare, retail, automobiles, manufacturing, supply chain, and service operations. However, security remains as one of the barriers.

Industrial IoT (IIoT) opportunity is set to surpass consumer internet by 2020. IIoT enables seamless dataflow across systems/applications/equipment and ERP for centralized monitoring, management and control centre.

Blockchain – moving to a business case centric model

Globally and in India blockchain has progressed to different levels of maturity, and in India, it is looking promising. The government is the most critical stakeholder and enabler of blockchain; while BFSI leads adoption in India.

Currently, 40+ blockchain initiatives are being executed by the public sector in India. At nearly 50%, BFSI has the maximum production level implementations in India. Logistics, retail, and manufacturing account for nearly 25% of blockchain implementations.

Blockchain is transforming from the experimental model to a business case centric model, which will result in more projects moving to the production phase where over 70% of implementations will deliver cost savings or operational efficiencies.

Integration of finance and supply chain domain with blockchain using industry-specific blockchain scenarios will be facilitated by modern ERPs. Blockchain enhances the existing benefits of ERP system to another level.

Industrial Robotics – a strong use case in ERP

Automotive is one of the leading verticals for industrial robotics and recently demand has been driven by tier 1/ tier 2 suppliers. Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) are pushing suppliers to invest in robotics to ensure better quality and faster production. Collaborative robots (Co-Bots) allow sharing heavy payloads and improve cycle times achieving an optimal degree of automation.

Strong growth of the e-commerce industry in India and of logistics subsequently has pushed automation to keep up with high throughput requirements. ERP could not be better automated without robotics forming part of most manufacturing automations.

Dr Agarwal’s Eye Hospital Launches its 11th Centre at Banashankari

To counter the growing instances of eye related ailments in Karnataka and provide patients access to world class eyecare facilities, Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital, the pioneer eyecare specialists in the country, today launched its super-specialty eye care center at Banashankari in Bengaluru. Kannada matinee idol and superstar Upendra inaugurated the facility amidst grand fanfare. The center at Banashankari is equipped with advanced technology and the latest equipment provide comprehensive eyecare in a holistic manner.

This is Dr. Agarwal’s 11th center in Bengaluru, making it easily accessible to patients in South Bengaluru.  The hospital will provide patients with 360-degree comprehensive eyecare under one roof. There are various services available at the center which includes general ophthalmologist, Cataract Services, Laser Cataract Surgery, Retina & Cornea Services, Glaucoma & orbit, Refractive Surgery, Paediatric Ophthalmology, Optical and Pharmacy, all made available to enhance patient experience while undergoing treatment for eye ailments.

Having achieved a strong foothold in metros and Tier II cities, Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital is penetrating the length and breadth of the country to address the varied eye and vision health needs of millions of people spread across different countries. The specialty hospital has over 87 centres across the country and overseas. 

Kannada Matinee Idol and Superstar, Actor, Upendra along with Dr. Ashvin  Agarwal, Executive Director and Chief of Clinical Services,  Dr. Ravi, Regional Medical Director, Cataract Oculoplasty and  Dr. Nataraj, Head- Clinical Services, Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital, Bengaluru, inaugurated the new state-of-the-art facility at Banashankari. The aim of the new center is to offer one-stop-solution for all kinds of eye ailments to the people of South Bengaluru without having to travel across the city for quality eyecare. The chain of hospitals is on an aggressive expansion spree and plans to be present across key cities in Karnataka. Next phase of expansion will see Dr. Agarwal’s offer its services in Dharwad, Shimoga, Hassan and Davangere.

Inaugurating the new facility, Superstar Upendra said, “I am excited to be here at Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital. They are one of the finest names in eyecare and its great to have them right here in South Bengaluru. Of all our senses, sight is the most critical one and we need to take utmost care of it. Also, I would like to take an opportunity to appeal to everyone to pledge to donate their eyes and give the gift of sight.”

Dr. Ashvin Agarwal, Executive Director and Chief of Clinical Services, Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital, Bengaluru, “We are excited to bring the people of South Bengaluru this state of the art eyecare facility. Over the years, we have endeavored to provide the best in class treatment and technology to our patrons at affordable costs. This center will cater to the needs of the eye patients in the neighborhood. We will continue to strive to bring the benefits of our clinical excellence to various parts of Karnataka.”

Dr. Ravi, Regional Medical Director, Cataract Oculoplasty, Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital said, “With the rise in screen time, pollution, sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy eating habits, eye related ailments are on the rise, having a dedicated facility for treating eye ailments is the need of the hour. We are happy to launch our 11th hospital in Bengaluru, which will provide the citizens access to global ophthalmology experts and other world class amenities under one roof. This hospital adheres to our commitment of offering outcome based high quality clinical care for our patients.”

Speaking at the event, Dr. Nataraj, Head- Clinical Services, Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital, Bengaluru said, “At Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital we are driven by our commitment to bring the latest technology and treatment to our patients. This new center will provide the world-renowned clinical excellence of Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital to the people of South Bengaluru. Our roster of skilled Ophthalmologists is unparallel and we constantly embrace innovation to best serve our patients. We will continue to strive to make ourselves more accessible to our patients through our expansion efforts.”

Dr. Agarwal’s Group of Eye Hospitals recently raised Rs. 270 crore investment from Temasek, a global investment company headquartered in Singapore. This has helped the group develop robust plans focusing on marketing strategies, new technologies, and expansion with an aim to increase patient footfalls, and at the same time offer a wonderful experience to all.

Pulp Strategy Launches AR Powered Creative-Tech Suite of Services

New promising technologies are increasingly giving wings to self-expression among the youth. Spotting this emerging trend, Pulp Strategy has launched creative tech to power up content marketing for brands on social media. Opening a new world of possibilities, the cutting-edge technologies help brands improve consumer engagement, build stronger emotional connections and leave a lasting impression on consumer’s long-term consciousness.

Pulp Strategy, India’s largest independent agency in the digital communications and technology space, recently established a dedicated new-age consumer engagement solutions division called Creative Tech. The brand new suite of services will enable Pulp Strategy’s clients to get a first-mover advantage on these emerging technologies and achieve an enhanced level of customer engagement achieved only by some of the most powerful brands worldwide.AR lenses to help try out new products virtually, improve engagement with branded filters on Facebook and Instagram, bring alive retail branding with virtual reality integrations, engage consumers with gesture control games and more. Brands have started tapping the immense potential of these technologies to engage their target audience in innovative ways.

The Creative Tech division currently focuses on Augmented Reality, VR, Gesture control and Visual programming. Pulp Strategy as also leveraging Facebook’s and Instagram’s AR & gamification capabilities  to offer an in-depth exploration of enhanced digital engagement that can elevate brand-consumer communication to a much more interactive, engaging and personalized level.

Pulp Strategy has incorporated an array of audience engagement features driven by a powerful Augmented Reality framework offered by Facebook. For instance, Pulp Strategy’s Creative Tech Suite of services offer AR filter of Gesture Control that can track subtle facial and body movements such as a blink of an eye, a pout or a hand gesture to initiate action. It also allows brands to take their users to new places virtually using Background Segmentation that enables a user to add whatever background they choose while taking a selfie. In fact, through Pulp Strategy’s latest service offering, brands can also enhance a user’s video watching experience by allowing them to alter the storyline or other features as per their preference, a la Bandersnatch!

Commenting on the motivation behind launching Creative Tech, Pulp Strategy’s MD Ambika Sharma said, we have deployed creative tech for a few of our clients already, we are now opening up our capabilities to enable agencies and brands to get the best out of their content marketing and campaigns. Engagement today is changing, the clutter places a strain on the best laid plans and creative tech is a big differentiator. It elevated the engagement and cuts through the clutter, unlike the recent past there is no longer the need to download AR apps, or scan QR codes, this is simple and available within the most popular social networking platforms Facebook and Instagram. In a digital media campaign or in a retail environment the technology is accessible anywhere any time with awesome possibilities. We have seen up too 8X increase in engagement in campaigns which use the innovation Pulp Strategy through its Creative Tech services, aims to help brands drive interactive engagement to its full potential. “

Creative Tech also includes a unique Object or image Scanning feature that allows an enterprise’s marketing collaterals, such its latest print ad, to communicate with consumers. Within the Facebook app this tech allows users to scan the brand image to initiate a pre-designated action like for instance playing the TVC or a DIY video. Imaging if your product placement in the very cluttered cosmetics counter at the store came with its own “how to video” or the magazine advertisement could actually give a behind the scenes of the “look”.

All the user need to do is switch on the camera and scan the logo or the picture printed on paper or any other medium. And if a brand wants to quickly check the opinion of a large customer base to facilitate in decision-making, brands can take the help of the Facebook Poll creation feature to let the people vote and decide what the brand’s next step is going to be. These technologies have truly democratized the way brands and users interact, and Creative Tech, from Pulp Strategy promises to be an able guide in manoeuvring the usage of these technologies to the fullest.

Everest Group Recognizes L&T Technology Services as ‘Leader’ in Automotive Engineering Services

L&T Technology Services Limited, India’s leading pure-play engineering services company, has been recognized as a ‘Leader’ and ranked among top service providers for Automotive Engineering Services by the consulting and research firm, Everest Group. LTTS has also been recognized as ‘Star Performer’ for its noteworthy progress across its automotive engineering capabilities and the resultant market impact.

In its report ‘Automotive Engineering Services PEAK Matrix™ Assessment 2019: Convergence of Mobility and Digital,’ Everest Group has classified 22 service providers in the Automotive Engineering Services PEAK Matrix™ based on various parameters such as market adoption, portfolio mix, value delivered, innovation & investments, delivery footprint, and vision and strategy.

According to Everest Group, LTTS’ strong domain expertise, well-diversified offerings of automotive engineering services’ across the globe, dedicated labs, and partnerships to boost portfolio growth have positioned LTTS as the star performer in the study. LTTS’ solutions – secure car platform, intelligent transportation monitoring system, Video Annotation Generation (VANGEN) tool, battery management solution, fleet mirror, smartphone integration solution - are the primary attributes for its leadership position.

Mr. Shailendra Shrivastava, Global Head – Ground Transportation, L&T Technology Services Ltd said, “The automotive industry is undergoing massive evolution pushed by innovative, precise and disruptive technologies. There has been massive change in the buying patterns of the global players with intensified demand for a new set of unique experiences for passengers. LTTS’ prowess in offering digital engineering services and solutions combined with its robust momentum has positioned LTTS as a market-leader among global automotive players. The recognition by Everest Group is a validation that LTTS successfully supports customers in providing sustainable and elegant engineering solutions.”

Mr. Akshat Vaid, Vice President, Everest Group said, “L&T Technology Services has emerged as a very strong player in the global automotive services market with significant focus on catering to global automotive hubs and customer segments. The company has a comprehensive portfolio of automotive engineering services spanning both digital and traditional workloads across the value chain. Their infrastructural investments into dedicated labs/COEs for product development and testing, as well as impactful frameworks designed to accelerate service delivery across automotive use cases have helped them accelerate growth. The company has also consistently invested in engineering research, in partnership with global academic institutions, helping them carve out a differentiator for themselves in an otherwise highly competitive market.”

Vertiv to List on New York Stock Exchange Through Business Combination with GS Acquisition Holdings

Vertiv Holdings LLC (“Vertiv”), a Platinum Equity portfolio company, and a global provider of critical digital infrastructure and continuity solutions, today announced it will become a publicly traded company through a merger with GS Acquisition Holdings Corp (NYSE: GSAH, GSAH.U, GSAH WS), a special purpose acquisition company co-sponsored by an affiliate of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. and David M. Cote. Mr. Cote, CEO of GSAH and former Executive Chairman of the Board and CEO of Honeywell, will serve as Executive Chairman of Vertiv. Vertiv's existing management team will continue to be led by 30-year industry veteran CEO Rob Johnson. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2020 and at close Vertiv’s stock will trade under the ticker symbol NYSE: VRT.

“Platinum Equity, Rob Johnson and his team have done a tremendous job over the last several years positioning Vertiv for long-term success. The Company is exactly the asset we were looking for, with a great position in a good industry, products differentiated by technology, strong organic and inorganic growth potential, and opportunities for sustained improvements over time. Taken together, I am delighted with the near- and long-term prospects for Vertiv and the opportunity this represents for shareowners,” said Mr. Cote.

Tom Gores, Chairman and CEO, Platinum Equity, said, “I’m proud of the work our team has done at Vertiv in positioning it where it is today, and I’m very excited about the new partnership with our friend David and long-time partners at Goldman Sachs. Rob Johnson and the management team have done a tremendous job preparing the company for its next phase of growth.”

“This transaction enables us to accelerate our growth and innovation strategy and broaden our opportunities as we continue to focus on the ever-evolving needs of our customers,” said Vertiv CEO Rob Johnson. “Our partnership with David, who has a proven track record of driving operational improvements and shareholder value, will further enhance our trajectory as we look to capitalize on our strong foundation in a growing industry.”

Platinum Equity Partner Jacob Kotzubei, who will become a board member of the newly listed company, said, “We are pleased to partner with Goldman Sachs and Dave Cote on the next phase of Vertiv’s journey, and to participate in the company’s future success as a meaningful shareholder. We also look forward to working with Dave, Rob and the Vertiv management team to accelerate Vertiv’s product and service leadership in the industry.”

With operations in more than 130 countries, Vertiv is a global leader in delivering the hardware, software, analytics and ongoing services customers rely on to enable their vital applications to run continuously, perform optimally and grow with their business needs. The company’s portfolio of power, thermal and IT management along with cooling and IT infrastructure solutions and services that extend from the cloud to the edge of the network, generated nearly $4.3 billion in revenue in 2018.

Key Transaction Terms

The transaction, unanimously approved by both boards of directors, is expected to close in the first quarter of 2020, subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, and approval of GSAH’s stockholders. At closing, the public company’s name will be changed to Vertiv Holdings Co. Upon closing, Vertiv will have an anticipated pro forma enterprise value of approximately $5.3 billion, or 8.9x the company’s estimated 2020 pro forma Adjusted EBITDA of approximately $595 million.

Upon completion, it is expected that, subject to various purchase price adjustments and any redemptions by the public stockholders of GSAH, Platinum Equity will hold approximately 38% of Vertiv Holdings Co and the sponsor (including Mr. Cote and affiliates of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.) will own approximately 5% of Vertiv Holdings Co. In addition to the approximately $705 million of cash held in GSAH’s trust account, additional investors (including affiliates of Mr. Cote and affiliates of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.) have committed to participate in the transaction through a $1.239 billion private placement.

After giving effect to any redemptions by the public stockholders of GSAH, the balance of the approximately $705 million in cash held in GSAH’s trust account, together with the $1.239 billion in private placement proceeds, will be used to pay $415 million cash consideration (subject to certain adjustments) to Vertiv stockholders, pay transaction expenses and reduce Vertiv’s existing indebtedness to up to 3.6x 2019 estimated pro forma Adjusted EBITDA. The remainder of the consideration payable to the stockholders of Vertiv will consist of shares of GSAH common stock.

The transaction will be effected pursuant to the Agreement and Plan of Merger (“the Merger Agreement”), entered into by and among GSAH, Vertiv Holdings, LLC, VPE Holdings, LLC (Vertiv Holdings, LLC’s parent), and the other parties thereto.

Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC acted as lead placement agent and exclusive financial advisor to GSAH. J.P. Morgan Securities LLC acted as financial advisor to Vertiv. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP acted as legal advisor to GSAH. Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, LLP and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP acted as joint legal advisors to Platinum Equity and Vertiv.

Conference Call Information

Investors may listen to a presentation regarding the proposed transaction on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 starting at 10:30 a.m. ET. The call can be accessed by dialing 1-877-883-0383 (domestic toll-free number) or 1-412-902-6506 (international) and providing the conference ID: 8567556, or asking for the GSAH-Vertiv transaction announcement call. The live webcast of the investor call as well as related presentation materials will be available at

Digital Technology - AI, IoT on Display at the Excon 2019

The first day of the tenth edition of CII’s EXCON 2019 is witnessed the launch of a range of products equipped with futuristic technology or advanced features.

JCB India launched its all-new ecoXpert Backhoe Loader and introduced the NXT series and the Quarry Master range of Excavators. The construction equipment company also launched its new range of side engined Telehandlers at Excon’19.

Case Construction Equipment, a construction equipment company from CNH Industrial, has launched its Crawler Excavator CX220C at the exhibition. The entry into the segment will increase the company’s share in the construction equipment business from 40% to 70%.

CASE CX220C comes with a FPT Industrial engine to ensure productivity, efficiency and low fuel consumption, the company claimed. Crawler Excavator CX220C will be available in the Indian market from April next year.

German conglomerate Thyssenkrupp also launched two new products -- a cone crusher and a Vertical Shaft Impactor (VSI).

Vivek Bhatia, Managing Director and CEO, Thyssenkrupp said, “The newly launched cone crusher allows you to go from stage-3 crushing to stage-2 crushing. From a capacity point of view, you have a lot of flexibility in how you run it.”

Scania Commercial Vehicles India Pvt Ltd showcased its recently launched NTG Heavy Tipper, parts and service solutions along with with BS-IV CEV ready industrial engines, while Elgi Equipments launched its ‘future-ready, energy-efficient range of electric and diesel portable air compressors’ at the event.

Atlas Copco, air compressor manufacturer, also launched four compressors -- XRH 1100 PLUS, XAWS 550 PACE, XAV216 PLUS and  XA187 PLUS. The company also launched  HiLight LED light towers that can illuminate an area of approximately 4,000-5,000 sqm.

Nitin Jairam Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport & Highways, and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Government of India inaugurated the event, which is attended by 1,250 exhibitors including 390 from overseas.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

KONE Elevator India Displays AI, IoT Technologies to Deliver the Best People Flow Experience at EXCON 2019

KONE, the leading manufacturer of elevators and escalators in the world and in India, opened the gates to its innovation excellence at EXCON 2019’s Artificial Intelligence Pavilion. Over five days, visitors can experience the impressive innovations and technological break-throughs that KONE has been offering to the industry for over a century now.

KONE India is participating in the Artificial Intelligence Pavilion to showcase their cutting-edge solutions and experience centre, and how they use AI and IoT to deliver the best People Flow experience.EXCON isthe largest trade fair on construction equipment & technology in South Asia organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry.

“Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT) are going to revolutionize the way we live.  Over the years, Internet of Things has revolutionised our world and IoT Innovations from India are helping greater presence. KONE has an impressive innovation pedigree and we have been on the Forbes list of world’s most innovative companies for eight times. Our groundbreaking technologies redefined innovation in the industry and we use up-to-the-minute technologies such as machine learning, artificial intelligence, augmented reality, quantum computing, blockchain technology, etc. to innovate the safest, intelligent and the best people flow solutions,” said Mr. Amit Gossain, MD, KONE Elevator India.

He further informed, “Visitors can experience our newest innovation, KONE CareTM 24x7 Connected Services recently launched in India. In collaboration with the recognized leader in cognitive computing, IBM Watson, this is yet another breakthrough innovation that will result in fewer faults, faster repairs and real peace of mind for the customers and users.Another aspect of digitalization is the potential to improve speed and efficiency, and our Technology & Engineering Centres and manufacturing units bring innovations closer to customers, and get new services and solutions faster into the market.”

KONE, remains at the leading edge of technological development in tune with the changing market dynamics and technologies. Some of their momentous innovations include MonoSpace, a machine room-less elevator invented in 1996, and UltraRope, a lightweight rope with carbon fiber that made high-rise travel possible. Both of these groundbreaking technologies redefined innovation in the industry.

At KONE, ‘connected’ means using real-time data and analytics as preventive maintenance gets smarter. It also means improving customer experience through real-time transparency. KONE adopts a ‘digital culture’, and co-creates new products or services together with customers and partners and it is an area where they lead.

To witness these cutting-edge solutions and experience centre, and to know how they use AI and IoT to deliver the best People Flow experience, visit them at EXCON!

Date: 10-14 December, 2019
Time: 10:30 am – 6:00 pm
Stall: Hall 4, Lower Level, Artificial Intelligence Pavilion

IIM Udaipur Brings Out Business Review Magazine Encompassing Impact-Oriented Research and Insights for Professionals

Editor’s Synopsis-

IIM Udaipur launches biannual Business Review Magazine in Bangalore
The first issue of the magazine focuses on the digital world of disruption, development and discernment which is emerging in India
Magazine features editorial columns, guest articles, research insights, perspectives from management gurus and IIMU faculty members

Indian Institute of Management Udaipur has launched its biannual IIMU Business Review Magazine in the IT capital of India – Bangalore, which complements the theme of its first issue - ‘Digital Business.’  This initiative aims to make high-quality, impact-oriented research accessible to practitioners and provide insights from experts that will be valuable for management professionals. Along with the Chief Guest- Mr. Ashok Soota, Executive Chairman and Co-founder, Happiest Minds, one of IIM Udaipur’s Board of Governors Ms. Mythily Ramesh, Co-founder and CEO, NextWealth and Prof. Janat Shah, Director, IIM Udaipur also participated in the launch.

Prof. Janat Shah, Director, IIM Udaipur said, “IIMU Business Review Magazine will bring the world of academic researchers and practitioners closer by showing how each can inspire and stimulate the other. This magazine would eventually offer a vast pool of resources, editorial columns, guest articles, research insights and perspectives from management gurus and IIM Udaipur faculty members useful for management professionals.”

Addressing the attendees, Chief Guest - Mr. Ashok Soota, Executive Chairman, Happiest Minds, said, “-I would like to congratulate IIM Udaipur for Launching Business Review Magazine and Digital Enterprise Management.  Creative use of new disruptive digital technologies to create new markets improve productivity, streamline processes, meet new customer expectations and enhance customer expectations; ultimately the real test is that it must improve profitability. The Future of digital enterprise is here and for leaders to brace for the impact is the need of the hour. To win at the enterprise game, resources in the form of research publications, one such as IIMU Business Magazine will help in transforming the perspective of the global business community."

The need for such a B-school magazine has stemmed from several technological and business advancements occurring at the global level and affecting managerial and business activities today.  The research adds to the knowledge which ultimately can be transferred to the world of practice.

The first issue features an interview with Mr. Satish Kumar Gupta, MD and CEO, Paytm Payments Bank on transforming banking and payments in India. Tapping into the world of a digital enterprise, Dr. Y Shekar, In-Charge, Centre for Digital Enterprise, IIM Udaipur, talks about the skills needed in the digital era.

Recently, IIM Udaipur partnered with several leading companies across business verticals including Quikr, IBM, InfoEdge, Accenture and ITC Infotech to help bridge the gap between academia and industry needs in the digital era. IIMU also got recognition across the country for its recent listing in FT Masters in Management Rankings 2019 which includes top B-schools from Europe, Asia and North America. IIM Udaipur also launched the first-ever 12-month, full-time, residential MBA in Digital Enterprise Management (DEM).

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