Saturday, January 29, 2022

Dealshare Raises $165 Million In Fresh Round Of Financing, Valuing The Company At $1.6Bn+

* DealShare announces the first close of its Series E funding from marquee investors Tiger Global, Alpha Wave Global, Dragoneer Investments Group, Kora Capital and Unilever Ventures as part of a wider financing round

* Annual Revenue Run Rate crosses $600m

* Total customer base at more than 10 million

3-year-old social e-commerce start-up DealShare today announced that it has raised $165 million in the first close of its Series E fund raise. The Company welcomed Dragoneer Investments Group, Kora Capital and Unilever Ventures, along with continued commitments from existing investors Tiger Global and Alpha Wave Global (Falcon Edge).

The company has been growing its consumer and revenue base strongly and expects to hit $1bn revenues in the near term. The funds raised in this round will be utilized to invest in technology and data science, as well as a ten-fold expansion in its logistics infrastructure and to increase geographic reach. In addition, it will establish a sizable offline store franchise network. 

DealShare has built a new disruptive retail model for India focusing on affordability for mass consumers. It offers high-quality, low-priced essentials coupled with a gamified, fun-filled, and virality-driven shopping experience, making it easy for first-time internet users to experience online shopping. 

Commenting on the latest funding round, Vineet Rao, Founder & CEO of DealShare, said: "DealShare is one of the fastest growing e-commerce companies in India. Our revenues and customer base have grown 13 times in the last year with improving profitability. With a strong customer base of over 10 million, we have expanded our geographical presence to over 100 cities across 10 states. Our company has created job opportunities for over 5,000 persons across the country.”

“We have created a network of over 1,000 community leaders under our flagship program DealShare Dost enabling an efficient and highly scalable supply chain. We will be utilizing the proceeds from the round to invest heavily into technology, improving the supply chain and expanding our footprint throughout the country. We will also invest in acquiring best-in-class technologies and marquee brands that are focused on the mass market”, Rao added.

Griffin Schroeder, Partner, Tiger Global said “DealShare is growing rapidly and has built an impressive customer base with a strong leadership team executing on its innovative social commerce strategy. As it expands into Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, DealShare is well positioned to power a new wave of e-commerce growth in India.”

Sharing his vision for the company's growth trajectory, Sourjyendu Medda, Founder, Chief Business Officer, DealShare, said: "We are witnessing very high growth in our business. This year, we will be expanding our presence to well over 200 cities across 20 states and are setting an audacious goal to increase our annual revenue run rate to $3 billion while becoming operationally profitable. We also aim to add close to 50 million new consumers in the next 12 months.”

“Our mission is to increase affordability and accessibility of high-quality products at low prices for mass consumers. We have created a unique network of more than 1000 small and medium manufacturers in the grocery and essential space which allow us to enable our mission. Majority of our consumers are first to e-commerce because of us. Not only are we spearheading e-commerce adoption in the country but we are also doing that with ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ as the key focus.”, Sourjyendu Medda added.

DealShare operates over 100 warehouses in the 10 states it operates in, and plans to expand its warehousing from 2 million square feet today to 20 million square feet over the next 12 months.

Navroz D. Udwadia, Co-Founder and Partner, Alpha Wave Global, added “We are pleased to invest in this round and continue our support of Dealshare. DealShare delivers a compelling value proposition to its customers, who are value-conscious middle Indians in Tier 2 and 3 cities who crave local / regional products.“

Founded by Vineet Rao, Sourjyendu Medda, Sankar Bora, and Rajat Shikhar in 2018, DealShare provides a sharp and curated assortment at highly competitive prices and has built an innovative community leader driven ultra-low-cost delivery mechanism collectively leading to best-in-class unit economics. DealShare has boosted its senior leadership by recruiting top industry leaders with deep experience in retail and consumer technology.

Avendus was the exclusive financial advisor to the transaction.

About DealShare:

DealShare is a disruptive e-commerce model built towards re-inventing e-retail for the next billion internet users. Currently, DealShare is present in 100+ cities across 10 states and it plans to expand to 200+ cities across 20 states in 2022. The company has acquired more than 10 million consumers and adds lacs of new consumers every month. DealShare caters to about 4 lakh orders daily. Since its inception, company’s focus has been to procure products from local manufacturers and provide them with a platform to digitize their business and scale their local brands. At present, DealShare has partnered with over 1,000 local and regional brands and sources its products directly from the manufacturers. For more information, visit:

MAHE Establish Hebri Beedu Dr Aravinda Ballal Endowment

The President of MAHE Trust & Chairman of MEMG, Bengaluru – Dr Ranjan R Pai, inaugurated the Memorial Trust in remembrance of Dr Aravinda Ballal.

Dr H S Ballal, Pro-Chancellor, MAHE ,  Lt Gen (Dr.) MD Venkatesh, Vice-Chancellor, MAHE, Dr M V Prabhu, Pro Vice-Chancellor, MAHE, Dr PLNG Rao, Pro Vice-Chancellor, MAHE, Dr Dilp Naik, Pro Vice-Chancellor, MAHE Dr Narayana Sabhahit- Registrar MAHE, and other  officials of MAHE, were present to commemorate the occasion.

Aravinda Ballal was born in 24.10.1935 to Sri Hebri Beedu Amba Ballal and Sri Belanje Krishnayya Hegde couple. He completed his primary and secondary education at Christian High School, Udupi and intermediate studies at MGM College, Udupi. He had his  MBBS  with Post graduation  in Medicine  at KMC, Manipal and Mangaluru.

He began his career as Medical Officer at Wenlock Hospital, Mangaluru. He was giving very good services to patients under the guidance of Dr K R Shetty and Dr B M Hegde, the stalwarts in the field of medicine.

In the year 1979, he joined the Department of Medicine, KMC, Mangaluru as Assistant Professor and worked with Dr A Prabhakar Rao, Head of the Department of Medicine.  After rendering two decades of services, he retired in 1996 as Professor. He had earned the respect of hundreds of students with his outstanding pedagogy. Then he served as Professor at Yenepoya Medical College from 1999-2013.

When he suffered a paralytic stroke in 2020, his nephew, Dr HS Ballal, Pro Chancellor, MAHE ensured all necessary facilities for him.  He was provided with best healthcare services by his grandniece, Dr Meenakshi A Shetty and Dr M Chakrapani during this period.

Dr Aravinda Ballal who was a bachelor, died on 14.04.2021.  Dr H S Ballal conducted his post mortal rituals.    Dr Aravinda Ballal donated his entire savings and assets to KMC, which had provided him education, the career of 20 years , and best healthcare services during his illness.  It was the earnest desire of Dr Aravinda Ballal that, his entire savings and assets should be pooled and an endowment fund should be created.  Dr Aravinda Ballal was providing best healthcare services for the downtrodden people.

Dr Divakar Shetty, retired anesthesiologist, KMC, who had served Dr Ballal contributed  ?63 lakhs.   His favourite disciple Dr MV Prabhu, Pro Vice Chancellor, MAHE contributed   ?10 lakhs,  his nephew Dr Sudheerchandra Ballal, Dentist in Udupi contributed 2 lakhs, thus totally amounting to Rs.75 lakhs.  MAHE is donating a matching grant of Rs. 75 lakhs to this Endowment, that is being set up with a capital of ? 1.5 crore for the purpose of rendering financial assistance to the needy and senior citizen patients.  

Dr H S Ballal, Pro Chancellor, MAHE, Dr M V Prabhu, Pro Vice Chancellor, MAHE, and Dr Prakash Harishchandra, Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore have put their heart and soul into making this Endowment to fulfil the wishes of Dr Aravinda Ballal. 

AU Bank Deliver Strong Performance With Q3’FY22 PAT Of Rs 302 Cr

The Board of Directors of AU Small Finance Bank Limited at its meeting held today, approved the financial results for the quarter and nine months ended December 31, 2021. 

Executive Summary 

A significant improvement in the overall business environment resulted in strong disbursements for AU Bank. In Q3FY22, fund-based disbursements were up 33% YoY at Rs 8,152 Crore as compared to ? 6,115 Crore in the same quarter of the previous year. Disbursements included ECLGS of ? 48 Crore in Q3FY22. Non-fund disbursements for Q3FY22 were up 55% YoY at ? 627 Crore as compared to ? 405 Crore in the same quarter of the previous year. 

Deposits grew 49% YoY to ? 44,278 Crore from ? 29,708 Crore, with further improvement in CASA ratio to 39% compared to 22% a year ago. The Bank witnessed a growth of 33% YoY in its gross advances to ? 40,719 Crore from ? 30,523 Crore. This was coupled with consistent collection efficiency in excess of 100% for every month of the quarter, resulting in an improvement in asset quality ratios. Bank maintains a strong position in Digital services with properties like AU 0101, Video Banking, Credit cards, UPI QR etc. all of which continue to see strong momentum. 

Financial Highlights 

Q3’FY22 financial results  

Net profit for the quarter rose to ? 302 Crore  

Net Interest Margin (NIM) at 6.3%  

ROA stood at 2.2% and ROE at 17.4%  

Average cost of funds reduced to 5.9% from 6.7% in the same quarter last year   

Asset quality  

Bank’s Asset quality continued to improve significantly with GNPA at 2.6% as against 3.2% in the previous quarter  

Net NPA stood at 1.3% of net advances against 1.7% in the previous quarter  

Collection efficiency averaged 106% as compared to 97% last year for the same period 

Bank has, additionally, maintained contingency provision buffer of ? 300 Crore (75 bps of advances) over and above provisions for GNPA, Restructured book and standard provisions 

Capital Adequacy 

Bank remains well capitalized with a strong Tier-I capital ratio of 18.2% and total CRAR of 19.5% which is sufficiently above minimum requirement of 7.5% and 15% respectively Including profits for 9MFY22, the CRAR ratio is 22.0% and Tier I ratio is at 20.7% 

Nine-month ended December 31st, 2021 

Bank’s total balance sheet grew by 26% YoY to ? 58,645 Crore 

Total income stood at ? 4,937 Crore   

For 9MFY22, net revenue (net interest income plus other income) was at ? 2,980 Crore and Net profit was at ? 784 Crore   

Growth in digital & payments platform 

The Bank’s digital properties like AU 0101, Video Banking, Credit cards, UPI QR etc. continue to see strong momentum 

The Bank has issued 1 Lac+ Credit cards and installed 3 Lac+ QR codes till now 

Of the total credit card issued, over 53% of customers are first time users in more than 150 districts of the country since launch 

Video Banking experience has been quite encouraging in terms of enhancing reach, acquisition and engagement 

31 % Savings Account opened digitally through AU 0101 and Video Banking during the quarter 

Key Business Updates 

Continuing its effort to broad-base and strengthen its Board, AU Small Finance Bank, appointed Shri Harun Rashid Khan, ex-Deputy Governor of RBI as Non-Executive Independent Director (Additional Director) on the Board, for a period of three years, effective 28th December 2021, subject to the approval of Shareholders 

The Bank has expanded its presence to 69 new touchpoints in the form of Asset Centres, Bank Branches, Bank Outlet (BO) and Smart BC and its network is spread across 880 touchpoints as on December 31, 2021 

CRISIL has upgraded its rating outlook on long-term debt and fixed deposit program of the bank to ‘Positive’ from ‘Stable’ reflecting strength in asset quality, granularity in liabilities and the overall banking franchise; Long term rating at ‘CRISIL AA-/Positive’ and FD rating at ‘CRISIL AA+/Positive' 

AU Bank constituted its Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) committee during the quarter to increase emphasis on D&I within the bank with a mandate to make AU Bank a more inclusive workplace 

AU Bank was certified as a ‘Great Place To Work’ for the second consecutive year 

The third quarter being the festive season, AU Bank announced a host of features and benefits for its NRI customers and had also launched AU Shopping Dhamaka with offers across 500+ brands 

Commenting on the performance, Mr. Sanjay Agarwal, MD & CEO, AU Small Finance Bank said, "In Q3'FY22, we saw continued improvement in the operating environment and borrower cashflows. These factors along with the secured nature of our loan book led to significant asset quality improvement in the quarter, along with continued improvement across all other key focus areas. These include improving granularity of our deposit base, healthy asset growth driven by small-ticket secured loans, increasing adoption of our digital properties following the launch of our super app AU 0101, QR codes and credit card offerings, and improved visibility and brand recall following our brand campaign. Our confidence in our borrower base, power of the banking platform, and our own business model of small-ticket secure lending has been reinforced. Given our strong lending model, increasing granularity of deposits, growing reach and our evolving digital properties, I feel we are well positioned to take advantage of the significant opportunities in the segments we are present in. Nonetheless, we remain cautiously optimistic in our approach as the situation around the pandemic remains fluid”.  

Toyota Glanza And Urban Cruiser Clock Cumulative Wholesales Of Over 1 lakh Units

* Both the models help TKM tap 66% first time buyers especially in Tier II & III markets in India  

True to its belief of delivering “Mass Happiness to All”, Toyota Kirloskar Motor witnessed a significant new milestone with the Toyota Glanza and the Urban Cruiser, together clocking cumulative wholesales of over 1 lakh units. Launched in June 2019 and September 2020 respectively, both the Glanza and the Urban Cruiser have received a phenomenal response from the customers, with the Glanza clocking over 65,000 units and the Urban Cruiser registering cumulative wholesales of more than 35,000 units.

Ever since its launch, the Glanza and the Urban Cruiser have played a significant role in catering to 66% of first-time Toyota buyers, especially in Tier II & III markets. This has also helped TKM garner young-millennial customers who are not only seeking exceptional automobile ownership experience, but also the best balance of economically viable options. Furthermore, customers have also availed comprehensive “Best in Class” ownership experience, through the specially designed value-added service programs such as Express Maintenance 60 (EM60), Q Service, Extended Warranty & Service Packages (SMILES).

Commenting on the success of Glanza and Urban Cruiser, Mr. Atul Sood, Associate Vice President, Sales, and Strategic Marketing, TKM, said, “Toyota takes great pride in its unrelenting efforts to ensure the highest customer satisfaction, and this milestone is a testament to the best ownership experience, exceptional sales & after sales services, as well as peace of mind that is offered to every single Toyota customer. The Glanza and the Urban Cruiser have witnessed phenomenal success over the years, with the Glanza registering more than 25% growth when compared to its sales in 2020. Thanks to both these models that have helped us strike a defined balance to reach young aspiring customers, who desire to own a Toyota early in their lives.

The success of Glanza and Urban Cruiser reiterates our belief that a good purchase experience is not just about the product, but about the entire ownership process.  Our focus on expanding footprints covering the tier II and tier III markets, has enhanced TKM product accessibility and service coverage to a wider and newer set of customer base. At present we are operational across 418 dealer outlets in the country. Furthermore, our virtual showroom has simplified the process of car buying by digitizing and integrating the key touchpoints in a customer’s purchase cycle, as a one-stop-shop solution. We thank our customers for their patronage, and we will continue to strive towards our commitment to providing an awesome experience,” he concluded.

An array of attractive offers, low cost of ownership, extended warranty, and customized finance schemes have helped Toyota maintain the sales momentum of the Toyota Glanza and the Urban Cruiser. Over the years, in addition to Toyota Finance Services (TFS), the company has partnered with several financial institutions to enable easy finance options at competitive interest rates for customers across a vast number of cities and towns in India. Similarly, through Toyota U Trust, upgraders and additional car buyers can avail one stop solution for reliable, transparent and easy buying & selling of used cars.

Happiest Minds Delivers Industry-Leading Y-O-Y Revenue Growth Of 47.2 Percent

 * Continues strong profitability performance with EBITDA of Rs 76 Crores, showing a y-o-y growth of 27.8%

Happiest Minds Technologies Limited (NSE:HAPPSTMNDS), a ‘Born Digital. Born Agile’, digital transformation and IT solutions company, today announced its consolidated results for the third quarter ended December 31, 2021 as approved by its Board of Directors.

Joseph Anantharaju, Executive Vice Chairman said, “Our compelling offerings have made us the partner of choice for our customers in their Experience, Data and Cloud initiatives. The stellar results validate the value proposition that we offer our customers and the critical role we play in their strategic digital initiatives.”

Venkatraman N, MD & CFO said, “We continue to deliver all-around healthy financial and business performance. Revenue growth of 47.2%, EBIDTA at 26.1%, robust cash generation and healthy capital return ratios are testimony to this. Coupled with onboarding talent and healthy utilization levels, we are well-positioned to address the strong demand environment for Digital services.”

Ram Mohan C, CEO - IMSS and Member of the Executive Board said, “Our customers trust us to migrate, deploy, develop, and manage applications at scale and to ring-fence the digital ecosystem with multi-cloud implementation and management services using next-gen cloud and security tools.“

Financial highlights for

Quarter ended December 31, 2021

Operating Revenues in US$ terms stood at $37.8 million (growth of 5.5% q-o-q; 44.2% y-o-y)

Total Income of Rs 29,228 lakhs (growth of 6.6% q-o-q; 45.2% y-o-y)

EBITDA of Rs 7,631 lakhs, 26.1% of Total Income (growth of 8.8% q-o-q; 27.8% y-o-y)

PAT of Rs 4,892 lakhs (growth of 10.1% q-o-q; 16.1% y-o-y)

Free cash flows of Rs 7,585 lakhs

EPS (diluted) for the quarter of Rs 3.38 (growth of 10.5% q-o-q; 17.0% y-o-y)

Nine Months ended December 31, 2021

Operating Revenues in US$ terms stood at $106.7 million (growth of 43.6% y-o-y)

Total Income of Rs 82,027 lakhs (growth 42.8% y-o-y)

EBITDA of Rs 21,258 lakhs, 25.9% of Total Income (growth of 35.5% y-o-y)

PAT of Rs 12,909 lakhs (growth of 2.1% y-o-y)

Free cash flows of Rs  20,897 lakhs

EPS (diluted) for half year Rs 8.92 (decline of 0.3% y-o-y)

RoCE & RoE (nine months annualized) of 32.9% and 28.2% respectively

Our Business:


195 as of December 31, 2021

11 additions in the quarter

Our People - Happiest Minds:

4,021 Happiest Minds as of December 31, 2021 (net addition for the quarter 225, nine-months 793)

Trailing 12 months attrition of 21.1%

Utilization of 81.0%, from 79.7% in last quarter

Key Project Wins:

For a global telecoms provider with operations in 200+ countries, Happiest Minds has won a multi- year, multi-million-dollar managed service contract to partner on their transformational and operational excellence journey

For a global EduTech SaaS company, Happiest Minds has won a multi-year, multi-million-dollar deal to provide End to End Infrastructure and Security Services by leveraging Microsoft Azure

For one of the world’s largest Transportation Mobility-as-a-Service Company, Happiest minds has been chosen to help them on their Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) security services

For a global enterprise SaaS company offering cloud-based directory as a service platform, Happiest Minds was chosen as their engineering partner

For a portfolio company of a large private equity firm, Happiest Minds is managing data quality and governance for its master data management (MDM) application hosted on Pimcore platform

For a global bank in business over 100 years, Happiest Minds is partnering them in their automation journey

For a global energy management technology company that manufactures software-driven solar energy solutions, Happiest Minds was chosen to develop the next generation, software-controlled Power Controller

For the US subsidiary of a multinational electronics corporation, Happiest Minds was chosen as their analytics and DevOps partner

Analyst Mentions:

Happiest Minds’ Digital Content Monetization (DCM) solution was featured in NASSCOM Cloud Case

study Compendium

Happiest Minds is recognized in Zinnov Zones as a

Leader for Enterprise Software

Leader for ER&D (Small & Medium Service Providers)

Niche-Established for AI Engineering

Niche-Established for IoT Services


Happiest Minds is ranked among India’s Top 25 Best Workplaces in IT & IT-BPM 2021 by Great Place to Work® Institute

Happiest Minds wins Platinum and Gold Awards for its 2021 Annual Report from League of American Communication Professionals (LACP) - Annual Report is ranked #24 globally and #1 in India

Happiest Minds is recognized as a GOLD partner of the Intel Network Builders Winners' Circle

Priya Kanduri, Vice President & CTO - IMSS received the Women in Tech award at the 19th Edition of Asia Pacific HRM Congress & Awards

Preeti Menon, Senior Vice President & Global Delivery Head – PES is recognized among the Top 20 Female Cloud Leaders in 2021 by The Sociable

Kiran Veigas, General Manager – Corporate Marketing & Communications was awarded DMA Trailblazer Rising Star CMO 2021 award at the BrandMaster Award Nite.

PhonePe Pulse Unveils Digital Payment Trends For Q4 2021

* Merchant payments register a 37% QoQ growth hitting 3.15 Billion transactions

* Maharashtra becomes the first state to cross 1 Billion transactions in any given quarter

PhonePe, India’s leading fintech platform, today announced key digital payment trends from PhonePe Pulse Q4 (October - December) 2021. The latest report shows the tremendous pace at which the country is adopting digital payments.

The key highlights of this quarter were:

* The PhonePe platform drove a cumulative 6.63 Billion transactions in Q4, a 26% QoQ jump.

* The Total Payments Value (TPV) of transactions processed grew 26% QoQ to $155 Billion, mirroring the growth in the number of transactions.

* Money transfers with UPI and merchant payments continued to register massive growth reaching 2.72 Billion and 3.15 Billion respectively.

* 25 Million merchants were digitized across 15,700 towns and villages in India, which continued to help offline merchant payments register tremendous growth

Further, the trend of digital payments becoming a Pan-India habit which was observed in Q3, continued in Q4 as well with 722 out of 726 districts in the country clocking positive growth in the number of registered users and digital transactions.

Geographically, Goa (71%), Andaman (41%), Assam (37%) were the top 3 states and union territories in terms of QoQ transaction growth. Maharashtra registered 27% growth and became the first state to cross a billion transactions in a quarter (1.01 billion txns). Karnataka was a close second showing 24% QoQ growth and driving 932 million transactions.

Speaking on the release of the Q4 2021 Pulse insights, Karthik Raghupathy, Head of Strategy and Investor Relations at PhonePe said, “As predicted in our Q3 report, we saw the merchant transactions register robust QoQ growth driven by the holiday season, festivities and multiple e-commerce shopping sales. The data and insights from Pulse clearly indicate that the fundamental shift we are seeing in consumer behavior towards contactless payments is here to stay. As digital payments become an ingrained habit for both customers and merchants, we expect to continue seeing a surge in volumes across use cases for Q1 2022 as well. We are excited to see what interesting insights and trends the next quarter will unveil.”

Launched in September 2021, PhonePe Pulse is India’s first interactive website with data, insights and trends on digital payments in the country. The PhonePe Pulse website showcases more than 2000+ Cr transactions by consumers on an interactive map of India. More details and some interesting fun facts are available on  

PNB Q3 Results: Net Profit Spikes 123% YoY To Rs 1,126 Crore, Beats Estimates

State-owned Punjab National Bank on Thursday reported a 123 percent year-on-year (YoY) jump in net profit at Rs 1,126 crore for the third quarter ended December 31, 2021.

In the corresponding quarter last year, the company posted a net profit of Rs 506 crore. CNBC-TV18 Polls had predicted a profit of Rs 1,033.8 crore for the quarter under review.

However, total income during October-December 2021 declined to Rs 22,026.02 crore as against Rs 23,298.53 crore in the year-ago period, PNB said in a regulatory filing.

Emirates To Introduce First Class Services To Thiruvananthapuram

Emirates has announced it will introduce First Class services on the Dubai to Thiruvananthapuram route starting from February 3, 2022. The airline is currently the first and only international carrier to serve Thiruvananthapuram with First Class services – offering customers superior products, services and comfort in air and on-ground.

Emirates will deploy its wide-body Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in a three-class cabin configuration – offering 8 seats in First Class, 42 in Business Class and 185 spacious seats in Economy Class.

Travellers from Thiruvananthapuram can experience Emirates’ First Class product on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Emirates flight EK 523 will depart Thiruvananthapuram at 4:30hrs local time and arrive in Dubai at 7:15hrs, local time. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, Emirates flight EK 522 will depart Dubai at 21:40hrs and arrive in Thiruvananthapuram at 3:10hrs, the following day, local time.

Premium passengers can now experience ultimate luxury on-board Emirates’ First Class cabins boasting private suites with seats that recline to a full-flat bed, a personal electrically-controlled mini-bar, a wide-screen 32” HD LCD screen, electrically-operated privacy dividers, and gourmet fine dining. First Class customers can look forward to ultimate privacy, more personal space, and superior comfort on-board.  Emirates’ First Class passengers can also enjoy the luxury of First Class Lounge at Dubai Airport and complimentary chauffeur-driven airport transfer in Dubai.

Emirates launched its operations to Thiruvananthapuram in 2006 and the airline currently operates three weekly flights to/from the city.

Friday, January 28, 2022

90 Percent Of Buyers In North Bengaluru Are IT Professionals Below 40 Years: Cyriac Joseph

By Manu Sharma

Historically cities have developed around airports and rail hubs. Bengaluru is no different. North Bengaluru hence has emerged as one of the hottest destinations in the last decade or so and has been seeing rapid development on all fronts. In an exclusive interview with Manu Sharma (MS), Editor, Silicon Village, Cyriac Joseph (CJ), Head - Marketing, PR & Corporate Communication, Vaishnavi Group, leading real estate developer in Bengaluru, talks about the reasons for this boom in North Bengaluru and top localities for investment.

Excerpts of the interview:

MS: What according to you is the type of development North Bengaluru is seeing and why?

CJ: It is no surprise that North Bengaluru has been witnessing a real estate boom and this is expected to continue in the mid to long term as all major developers have lined up key residential and commercial projects for launch in the coming years.

North Bengaluru boasts of large integrated township developments, many SEZs, apartment complexes, villa / row house projects and plotted developments.

However, currently, plotted developments appear to be the favoured choice for real estate consumers. Typically, these ready-to-build and “plug & play” plots which are conceived with greenery, open spaces and sustainability, offer freedom and customised dwelling units for the buyer while at the same time offering the safety and security of a gated / secure community. Historically, we have also seen plotted developments offering significantly higher returns vis-à-vis other real estate investment options.

The reasons for the boom in North Bengaluru are several. Major IT / ITES and technology hubs have located here as it boasts of enviable social infrastructure in terms of educational institutions, shopping, retail & entertainment hubs along with seamless & quick connectivity to the airport, This, coupled with the focus on infrastructure development including Metro connectivity, sub-urban rail connectivity, connectivity to Arterial ring road etcare the demand drivers in North Bengaluru.

Currently, we see that North Bengaluru is the most preferred among seasoned investors as well as first time home buyers as a viable option for long-term real estate investment.

MS: What is the demographic profile of the buyers in North Bengaluru according to you?

CJ: We find that about 90 percent of the buyers are IT professionals in the age group of 30 - 40 years, not only from Bengaluru but from other cities as well. The typical salary bracket is Rs 10 - 15 lakh p.a.

MS: How does North Bengaluru lend itself for plotted developments? Which are the areas most suitable in North Bengaluru?

CJ: Yelahanka is a famed area in North Bengaluru with multiple defence establishments, thus making it one of the most peaceful and safest residential areas in Bangalore. For families with young children, senior citizens or even those looking to retire, Yelahanka offers a comfortable and cosy lifestyle. Other residential areas in Bangalore’s northern region include Devanahalli, Hebbal and Thanisandra – all of which have large banks of undeveloped land, thus making them investment favourites.

Top 3 Localities in North Bangalore

The North Bengaluru market has evolved as a prominent residential market. This location has the perfect mixture of cost-efficient and luxury housing. Over the past few years, North Bengaluru has witnessed the launch of several plotted, high-end apartment and villa projects as well as cost-efficient housing projects.

Hebbal: One of the major localities to have become a favourite spot for real estate developers. With a wide variety of MNCs, IT companies, Hebbal is well connected with good connectivity to all parts of the city and a drive time of under 30-minutes to the Kempagowda International Airport.

Devanahalli: Claim to fame: Proximity to KIAL and IT hubs like KIADB’s Hardware Park and the Aerospace Park.

Yelahanka: The price of property is observed to have risen on an exponential level since the International Airport was established. The locality is one of the most low-congestion zones in Bangalore. This locality is blessed with a dedicated green belt for itself. With regards to connectivity, Yelahanka is well-connected with NH7 and NH9.

MS: What is the reason behind growing current demand for plotted gated communities?

CJ: Plotted developments have become increasingly popular over time, and are now a major real estate trend in India. Plotted developments are typically offered within gated communities, especially in suburbs that offer plenty of space and land, without compromising on connectivity. In Bengaluru, the best examples of this are seen in plotted development projects in Bengaluru in areas such as Whitefield, Sarjapur Road, Devanahalli and other key areas. 

Many people are also turning towards investing in plotted development projects because of the inherent benefits such as relatively lesser investment, the flexibility to build a dwelling unit as per the tastes and preferences of the buyer, higher returns and all the benefits of a gated community including amenities, safety and security, community living etc 

MS: What are the developments being planned by Vaishnavi Group in North Bengaluru?


1.  Vaishnavi LifeVaishnavi Life is a premium plotted development located at Yelahanka Extension, just 20 minutes away from KIAL. Spread over 45+ acres, Life features 605 + pre-engineered & smart plots. The project is thoughtfully planned with a host of amenities such as a 32750 sq.ft clubhouse, 12 thematic parks, 2 acres of central activity space amongst others. 

2.   Mixed use development project of 2.25 million sq.ft with residential, commercial & support functions are planned as a part of the development. We are also exploring the integration of a metro station. 

MS: What are the USPs of Vaishnavi's Plotted development projects in North? Have you roped in any international architects/ landscape consultants?

CJ: Vaishnavi’s premium plotted developments are painstakingly planned and thoughtfully conceived keeping in mind the requirements of the end-user. Vaishnavi always lays special emphasis on greenery, open spaces and sustainability. Plots are pre-engineered & smart with underground electric conductor, water and sewage lines. Roads range from 9 metres and stretch up to 18 metres at the grand entrance.

For Vaishnavi Life, we are working with Element Design Studio. Headquartered in Singapore, Element Design Studio Pte Ltd is a boutique design studio that provides landscape master planning and full serviced landscape architecture services for hotels, resorts, residential developments, mixed-use projects and golf course landscapes.

Tecno Offers Memory Fusion Feature With Upto 5GB Additional Virtual RAM Via OTA Update

* Tecno’s Camon 18, Pova Neo, Spark 8T and Spark 8 Pro’s 'memory fusion' feature allow users to borrow additional GBs from storage capacity to work as RAM in extremely demanding conditions

TECNO, the global premium smartphone brand, recently announced that its proprietary ‘memory fusion’ feature will be available through OTA updates, across its range of smartphones. The feature allow users to virtually expand their available RAM with a single tap.

Today’s Gen Z and millennial consumers are always on the lookout for phones which offer uninterrupted performance at all times and has good storage. They want a smartphone that can switch between multiple apps faster, store large amounts of data, provide immersive gaming experiences and run memory-intensive applications with reduced lag. To address such multi-tasking needs, Tecno’s ‘memory fusion’ feature allow users to borrow additional storage capacity and allot it to RAM whenever needed, quickly and conveniently.

The technology has proved to significantly improve smartphone performance an 80% increase in the average application start-up time has been observed, as well as upto two-fold rise in the number of backend cache applications.

Camon 18: 48MP AI selfie and 48MP rear camera with expandable RAM upto 7GB at just INR 14,999

The CAMON 18 sports a 48MP AI front & rear Camera, and is powered by a Mediatek Helio G85 processor with Hyper Engine Gaming Optimization, providing an incredible gaming experience. The smartphone comes with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. TENCO’s Memory Fusion feature allows users to borrow an additional 3GB from storage capacity to work as RAM during heavy-duty usage scenarios.

POVA NEO: An ultimate powerhouse with a massive RAM up to 11GB at just INR 12,999

The POVA NEO offers seamless smartphone experience through a powerful 6GB high capacity LPDDR4x RAM + 5GB expandable RAM with Memory Fusion feature and unmatched 6000mAh battery. It comes with a 128GB eMMC 5.1 internal storage expandable up to 512GB through a dedicated SD Card slot. It runs on HiOS v7.6 based on Android 11.

Spark 8T: Expandable RAM upto 7GB with 50 MP camera at just INR 9,999

The Spark 8T sports a 6.6-inch FHD+ display, a 50 MP dual rear camera setup, with a massive 5,000 mAh battery. The TECNO Spark 8T is powered by an octa-core MediaTek Helio G35 processor. The smartphone comes with 4GB of RAM which can be further expanded up to 3GB with Memory Fusion.

Spark 8 Pro: Expandable RAM upto 7GB with 33W fast charging and Helio G85 superfast processor at just INR 10,999

The SPARK 8 Pro features a MediaTek Helio G85 SoC, a triple rear camera setup with a 48-megapixel primary sensor, and a 5,000mAh battery with support for 33W fast charging. The smartphone offers up to 4GB of RAM and 64GB of eMMC 5.1 internal storage. There is also an option for users to expand internal storage up to 512GB through a micoSD card.

Land Rover Opens Bookings For New Range Rover SV - A Unique Interpretation Of Range Rover Luxury And Personalisation

* New Range Rover SV:  Handcrafted by Special Vehicle Operations, it is a unique interpretation of Range Rover luxury and personalisation 

* Powertrains: Available in 2 powertrains - the refined new 4.4 l Twin Turbo petrol and the efficient 3.0 l straight-six Ingenium diesel 

* Curated themes: Available in two design themes that are gateways for New Range Rover SV owners to express their own individuality inside or out: SV Serenity amplifies pure luxury detailing while SV Intrepid exudes a more stealth-like character 

* Exquisite finish: Exclusive materials and paint finish options highlight Special Vehicle Operations’ passion for quality and uncompromising attention to detail  

* Distinct identity: The New Range Rover SV will be the first Land Rover from Special Vehicle Operations to use the new ceramic SV roundel and simplified SV name  

Land Rover today opened bookings for New Range Rover SV in India with a choice of exclusive design themes, details and material choices from Special Vehicle Operations. The Range Rover SV features a refined new 4.4 l Twin Turbo petrol which delivers a power of 390 kW and torque of 750 Nm and the efficient 3.0 l straight-six diesel which delivers a power of 258 kW and torque of 700 Nm. It will be available in both Standard and Long Wheelbase body designs, including a five-seat LWB configuration for the first time. LWB customers also have the option of specifying the four-seat SV Signature Suite with an electrically deployable Club Table and integrated refrigerator. 

Rohit Suri, President and Managing Director, Jaguar Land Rover India, said: “The New Range Rover SV adds more luxury and personalisation options thus enabling our clients to create a truly individual Range Rover that embodies their own character and personality.” 

The New Range Rover SV is distinguished by carefully crafted enhancements that showcase and complement New Range Rover’s modernist design. Exclusive front bumper and five-bar grille designs set the new flagship model apart, with the lower aperture featuring five precisely executed full-width metal-plated blades. Exquisite materials chosen for their tactility include smooth ceramics, sustainably sourced woods and lustrous plated metals, highlighting Special Vehicle Operations’ passion for quality and uncompromising attention to detail. 

Additionally, Range Rover SV models are available with 33.27 cm (13.1) Rear Seat Entertainment screens, which are the largest ever fitted to a Range Rover and the optimum size for comfort. 

Cool Ceramics 

New Range Rover SV is the first vehicle from Special Vehicle Operations to carry the new ceramic SV roundel, which represents the SVO team’s design and engineering passion for modern luxury, performance and capability. The roundel introduces a simplified ‘SV’ model name that will identify all new Land Rover vehicles launched by Special Vehicle Operations in the future.  

Smooth, tactile ceramic is also featured inside, giving the gear shifter, Terrain Response and volume controls an elegant cool-to-the-touch feel. These exclusive ceramic components are produced using the same techniques as luxury watch faces.  

Meticulous Marquetry 

Special Vehicle Operations’ expert craftsmanship extends to the interior wood veneers, including optional mosaic marquetry on the centre console. For Long Wheelbase vehicles specified with the four-seat SV Signature Suite, the marquetry extends from the front of the cabin, right through to the fridge door in the rear, gradating through the centre console on all horizontal surfaces including the electrically deployable Club Table. 

Super-soft Leathers 

As standard, Range Rover SV features a monotone semi-aniline leather interior with uniquely shaped seats and SV-specific embroidery patterns. Near-aniline options with the natural finish and tactility of furniture-grade leather are also available: softer, with fewer treatments and less pigmentation for a more natural feel while meeting Land Rover’s demanding durability standards.  

Sustainable UltrafabricsTM 

For the first time, Special Vehicle Operations customers can specify a Range Rover with a sustainable leather alternative by choosing the Light Cloud and Cinder Grey UltrafabricsTM option with the SV Intrepid interior theme. Featuring a soft haptic and technical aesthetic, this polyurethane material has all the tactile qualities of leather but is 30 per cent lighter and generates only a quarter of the CO2 in its production.  

Exclusive Wheels 

Optional triple-finish 58.42 cm (23) forged Diamond Turned Dark Grey Gloss alloy wheels designed specifically for New Range Rover SV are among the 12 different wheels that can be specified, depending on powertrain and design theme.  

Individual Paint 

New Range Rover SV customers can choose from a selection of the standard Range Rover colour palette or one of 14 additional colours in the SV Bespoke Premium Palette, which includes a range of vibrant Gloss and sophisticated Satin finishes. Customers can also specify a contrast roof in either Narvik Black or Corinthian Bronze (SV Serenity theme only), depending on the body colour chosen.  

Curated Design Themes  

Specially curated SV Serenity and SV Intrepid design themes are key to the personalisation journey on New Range Rover SV. These themes can be specified independently for the exterior or interior, in conjunction with the standard Range Rover SV exterior or interior or applied as one theme to the whole vehicle. In total there are seven different design theme combinations to choose from.  

Inside, these design themes introduce contrasting two-tone front-to-rear colourway options which highlight the focal point of the interior – rear seats for SV Serenity, front seats for SV Intrepid. Additionally, the SV Intrepid interior features a rectangular perforation pattern for the SV-specific seats, offers the progressive non-leather Ultrafabrics™ option, and features Satin Black ceramic controls in place of Gloss White.  

For more information, kindly visit

Godrej Security Solutions Invests In Contact Image Sensor Technology To Enhance Their Portfolio Of Currency Handling Products

* Launches ‘Valumatic’- a CIS based currency counting machine for BFSI, retail and commercial sectors

Godrej & Boyce, the flagship company of the Godrej Group, announced that its business Godrej Security Solutions is launching a technologically advanced, CIS based currency counting machine, with a goal to increase its market share in currency handling products market from 6 % to 15% by 2024. This estimated growth and need for more innovation in this category is a result of a gap in the market with regards to the technology that can accurately detect denominations & fake currency. As per the NCRB records, high quality fake currency seized in 2020 was more than ?92.17 crore

Godrej Security Solutions, a prominent security solutions player, has always been in the forefront of pioneering currency handling solutions not just for the banking sector but also for retail and commercial sectors. While the currency handling market is flooded with numerous indigenous and imported brands, Valumatic pegs itself to be differentiated promising maximum accuracy in currency handling. With an advantage over the current 3D and color sensor value counters, Valumatic clearly stands out as a winner owing to its ability to accurately detect denominations & fake currencies of over 10 world currencies, ability to capture image and serial number, connectivity to printers for reports generation and easy software upgrades.

Commenting on the launch of the Valumatic and overall market for Currency handling machines, Mr Pushkar Gokhale, Vice President and Global Head, Marketing and Sales, Godrej Security Solutions, said, “The demand for cash handling products is likely to be driven by various factors and insecurities arising due to economic slowdown during the pandemic. The market opportunity is significant, and we are expecting an estimated sale of 1000 Units per year, with growth of 15% YOY.” With a leading market share in institutional security solutions in India, the new product launch will be backed by a customer touchpoint network of over 300 + channel partners.

According to the RBI records, there has been a jump in fake notes detection in the denominations of Rs. 500 and Rs. 2,000 notes. This in turn has led to the need for better and more accurate currency counting machines at banks and other high volume money establishments. Lack of a fast and more authentic currency counting machine would lead to loss of wealth and disrupt our economy. As per the National Crime Records Bureau, high-quality fake currency seized in 2020 was more than ?92.17 crore, compared to ?25.39 crores in 2019, ?17.95 crores in 2018, ?28.10 crores in 2017 and ?15.92 crores in 2016, the year of demonetisation. Looking at this gap around currency handling products in the market, Godrej Security Solutions’ has increased its investment towards innovation in cash sorting and detection category by 10%.

About Godrej Security Solutions:

Godrej Security Solutions is a division of Godrej & Boyce Mfg. Co. Ltd and part of the USD 4.1 billion Godrej Group. A pioneer and leader in the business, Godrej Security Solutions Division is the largest manufacturer and marketer of Security Solutions in India. It is the largest supplier of security solutions to several prestigious banking, corporate and public institutions. For the first time in the category and the industry, Godrej Security Solutions Division has been awarded the Superbrand status. It has also won the “Most Preferred brand” award in the Home Segment. The Division currently exports its products to over 45 countries including Middle East Asia, South East Asia, Far East Asia, East Africa, the US, Europe and the SAARC Countries. 

Honeywell And Navin Fluorine Partner To Manufacture Proprietary Solstice Range Of Hydrofluoroolefins In India

* Builds on Honeywell’s innovation leadership and long-term commitment to continue to deliver sustainable, energy-efficient solutions with proprietary hydrofluoroolefin (HFO) technology

* Honeywell continues investment in HFO production to ensure global supply needs are met

Honeywell (NASDAQ: HON) and Navin Fluorine International Limited (NSE: NAVINFLUOR), part of the Padmanabh Mafatlal Group, today announced a partnership to manufacture Honeywell’s proprietary Solstice range of hydrofluoroolefins (HFO) in India. Production is scheduled to commence by Q2-2022 at NFIL’s manufacturing facility in Gujarat.

This portfolio of next generation products has no ozone depletion potential and a global warming potential (GWP) of 1, thereby helping customers lower their carbon footprint without sacrificing end-product performance. These products have various applications, including in blowing agents for foam insulation and refrigeration liquid for chillers.

“Many countries have pledged to be carbon neutral and promote technologies to help them meet their sustainability goals. This partnership enables these countries – including developing countries – to transition to HFOs from the more harmful hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) and hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) alternatives that are currently prevalent,” said Laura Reinhard, VP-GM, Advanced Materials FIP, Honeywell.

“This partnership between Honeywell and Navin Fluorine reflects our confidence in the capabilities of Navin Fluorine to execute such complex, technical projects. We believe this project will be a good start to a long-term partnership between the two companies. We also hope to work with Navin Fluorine to develop a number of new, local applications for the Indian market,” she added.

The demand for low-GWP solutions continues to grow. Multiple global regulations stemming from the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol require the phasedown of HFCs, driving the demand for more sustainable solutions. Honeywell has already invested more than a billion dollars in research, development and new capacity for its Solstice technology, having anticipated the need for lower-GWP solutions to combat climate change more than a decade ago.

Honeywell’s partnership with Navin Fluorine will enable capacity expansion for its Solstice range to cater to the growing global demand for environmentally friendlier solutions.

Radhesh Welling, Managing Director, Navin Fluorine International Limited, said, “As the country’s leading producer of specialty fluorochemicals, we are pleased to partner with Honeywell for production of Honeywell’s industry-first HFOs at our Dahej facility. This will be a truly Make-in-India product that will serve global customers. We will also work together to develop new applications for Indian market. We strongly believe this project will help us further strengthen our partnership with Honeywell to do bigger and better things together in future.”

Honeywell recently committed to achieve carbon neutrality in its operations and facilities by 2035. This commitment builds on the company’s track record of sharply reducing the greenhouse gas intensity of its operations and facilities as well as its decades-long history of innovation to help its customers meet their environmental and social goals. About half of Honeywell’s new product introduction research and development investment is directed toward products that improve environmental and social outcomes for customers.  

About Honeywell

Honeywell ( is a Fortune 100 technology company that delivers industry specific solutions that include aerospace products and services; control technologies for buildings and industry; and performance materials globally. Our technologies help everything from aircraft, buildings, manufacturing plants, supply chains, and workers become more connected to make our world smarter, safer, and more sustainable.  For more news and information on Honeywell, visit 

About Navin Fluorine International Limited

Navin Fluorine International Ltd (NFIL) is one of the largest and the most respected Indian manufacturers of speciality fluorochemicals. It belongs to the Padmanabh Mafatlal Group – one of India’s oldest industrial houses. Established in 1967, NFIL operates one of the largest integrated fluorochemicals complexes in India with manufacturing locations at Surat and Dahej in Western India and Dewas in Central India. NFIL’s R&D centre, Navin Research Innovation Center (NRIC), is located at Surat, India. NFIL has five strategic business units: High Performance Products, Refrigeration Gases, Inorganic Fluorides, Speciality Fluorides, and Contract Research and Manufacturing Services (CRAMS). NFIL is ISO 9001 certified for quality, ISO 14001 certified for environment management, and OHSAS-18001 accreditation for safety management. To learn more, visit

The Adani Evening EducationCentre (AEEC) Launched At Kattupalli

The Adani Foundation today launched the Adani Evening Education Centre (AEEC) at Kattupalli. The AEEC was launched by Shri Sethu Raman, Panchayat Leader, Kattupalli Village panchayat in the presence of several officials and local community members. The AEEC programme will target students from the 6th to 10th standard and focus on tutoring them in English and Mathematics, while also assisting them with other subjects. These classes will be conducted daily for six days a week from 5 pm to 7 pm. The space for conducting these classes have been provided for by the Panchayat. This initiative has been proposed in ten villages of which, AEEC is already active in five. This programme is largely benefiting students from the fishing and other marginalized sections including the Irula community.

The AEEC programme is a part of the Adani Foundation CSR programme that is focused on social development intervention in 71 villages from 11 Panchayats.  With a focus on improving the quality of education and life skills benefitting the students of the local community, the AEEC will conduct evening education classes in five villages; Kattupalli, Pulicat, Kottaikuppam & Light House Kuppam Panchayats for the benefit of the Irula & Fishing Community Students.

Speaking at the inauguration, Shri Sethu Raman, Sarpanch of Kattupalli Village said, “Since schools are closed as per government norms till 31st Jan 22, the Adani group is helping students from the 6th to 10th standards in English and Mathematics. I request students to make use of this opportunity and wish they will come forward and express their desire to learn more subjects. I am confident that the Adani group will facilitate the same. I also request all to maintain covid protocol while attending class by wearing masks and keeping social distance.”

Presently the teachers are identified from the local community having Degree and above qualification and keen on serving the community. In the five villages this initiative has been rolled out in, several tangible benefits have already been noticed. These include the centre becoming a stress-free meeting place for students, increased attention and discipline with the Yoga classes and introduction of new life skills. Currently 265 students have enrolled in the AEEC

About Adani Foundation

Established in 1996, Adani Foundation today has widespread operations in 16 states that include 2,409 villages and towns across the country, with a team of professionals who work with an approach that embodies innovation, people participation and collaboration.

Touching the lives of more than 3.7 million people and passionately working towards creating social capital with focus on four core areas – Education, Community Health, Sustainable Livelihood Development and Infrastructure Development, Adani Foundation acts towards inclusive growth and sustainable development of the rural and urban communities, in turn contributing towards nation-building. 

Airtel And Google Partner To Help Grow India’s Digital Ecosystem

* Google to invest up to $1 billion in a partnership with Airtel as part of its Google for India Digitization Fund

* Deal includes investment of $700M to acquire 1.28%* ownership in Airtel and up to $300M toward potential multi-year commercial agreements

* The partnership will focus on enabling affordable access to smartphones across price ranges, and will continue to explore building on their existing partnerships to potentially co-create India-specific network domain use cases for 5G and other standards, and help accelerate the cloud ecosystem for businesses across India 

Bharti Airtel (“Airtel”), one of India’s premier communications solutions providers, and Google today announced that they will partner on a long-term, multi-year agreement to accelerate the growth of India’s digital ecosystem. Together, they will work to bring best-in-class end-to-end products to serve customer needs, provide quality customer experience, and bring their expertise to solve problems of affordability, access, and digital inclusion.

As part of this partnership, Google intends to invest up to $1B, as part of its Google for India Digitization Fund, which includes equity investment as well as a corpus for potential commercial agreements, to be identified and agreed on mutually agreeable terms over the course of the next five years. This will comprise:

A $700M equity investment in Bharti Airtel at a price per share of INR 734.

Up to $300M that will go towards implementing commercial agreements, which will include investments in scaling Airtel’s offerings that covers a range of devices to consumers via innovative affordability programs as well as other offerings aimed at accelerating access and digital inclusion across India’s digital ecosystem.

This deal will be subject to necessary regulatory approvals.

The two organizations recognize the importance of a connected India, in empowering businesses as they progress on their Digital Transformation journeys, and building a strong digital ecosystem for consumers everywhere. Both organizations are committed to working towards building an open technology ecosystem that serves customers and businesses with innovative digital services, and have agreed to jointly explore and invest across a wide spectrum of areas to create digital solutions that uniquely serve India’s requirements.

As a part of its first commercial agreement, Airtel and Google will work together to build on Airtel’s extensive offerings that covers a range of Android-enabled devices to consumers via innovative affordability programs. Together, the companies will continue to explore further opportunities to bring down the barriers of owning a smartphone across a range of price points, in partnership with various device manufacturers.

Under the larger strategic goals of the partnership, both companies will also potentially co-create India-specific network domain use cases for 5G and other standards, with cutting-edge implementations. Airtel is already using Google’s 5G-ready Evolved Packet Core & Software Defined Network platforms, and plans to explore scaling up the deployment of Google’s network virtualisation solutions to deliver a superior network experience to their customers.

Both companies will also focus on shaping and growing the cloud ecosystem in India to accelerate their digital transformation journeys. Airtel serves over one million small and medium businesses with its enterprise connectivity offering, and this partnership will help accelerate digital adoption.

Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman of Bharti Airtel said, “Airtel and Google share the vision to grow India’s digital dividend through innovative products. With our future ready network, digital platforms, last mile distribution and payments ecosystem, we look forward to working closely with Google to increase the depth and breadth of India’s digital ecosystem.”

“Airtel is a leading pioneer shaping India’s digital future, and we are proud to partner on a shared vision for expanding connectivity and ensuring equitable access to the Internet for more Indians,” said Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet. “Our commercial and equity investment in Airtel is a continuation of our Google for India Digitization Fund's efforts to increase access to smartphones, enhance connectivity to support new business models, and help companies on their digital transformation journey.”

About Airtel:

Headquartered in India, Airtel is a global communications solutions provider with over 480 Mn customers in 17 countries across South Asia and Africa. The company ranks amongst the top three mobile operators globally and its networks cover over two billion people. Airtel is India’s largest integrated communications solutions provider and the second largest mobile operator in Africa. Airtel’s retail portfolio includes high speed 4G/4.5G mobile broadband, Airtel Xstream Fiber that promises speeds up to 1 Gbps with convergence across linear and on-demand entertainment, streaming services spanning music and video, digital payments and financial services. For enterprise customers, Airtel offers a gamut of solutions that includes secure connectivity, cloud and data centre services, cyber security, IoT, Ad Tech and cloud based communication. For more details visit

About Google:

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful. Through products and platforms like Search, Maps, Gmail, Android, Google Play, Chrome and YouTube, Google plays a meaningful role in the daily lives of billions of people and has become one of the most widely-known companies in the world. Google is a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc.

Sportz Village Schools Developed Programs To Enable Children To Be Physically Engaged In Safety And Comfort Of Their Homes

By  Mr. Krish Iyengar- Head Sportz Village Schools & Group Head - Marketing, Sportz Village 

How did Sportz Village Schools engage with children during the COVID?  

Children all over the world had their schooling disrupted due to the pandemic. Post the schools shut down in India, Sportz Village Schools developed programs and offerings which enabled children to be physically engaged in the safety and comfort of their own homes. We introduced ‘Play at Home’ a program that consisted of physical education classes with the curriculum suitably adapted to be conducted online. In addition to this, we also developed a web-based platform called ‘Sportz Village Leaderboard’. The Leaderboard incentivized children to be physically active by gamifying different physical activities. With these digital programs, Sportz Village was able to engage with close to 1.5 Lakh children and conducted more than 50,000 sessions. 

How are the programs of Sportz village Schools different from the ones conducted by regular schools and how has the experience been for children?

The Sportz Village in-school program is different from standard Physical education programs in a variety of ways. Firstly the Sportz Village program is implemented with the help of a scientifically designed curriculum. This curriculum is designed in such a way so as to be engaging and inclusive. The Sportz Village program also utilizes props and equipment which is designed as per the age of the children. Our program also has bi-annual assessments which helps track the performance of the child in different fitness and skill parameters. These assessments also help parents identify which sports their child could specialize and excel in. We also provide schools with content that seeks to teach academic concepts through sport.

What measures schools should take for children post-re-opening, to conduct physical activities? 

As recently the government has given a go-ahead to schools to re-open, physical education classes should also be normalised to ensure basic health and fitness of children. Schools need to implement social distancing norms. Sportz Village Schools curriculum has been modified in such a way that there is minimal physical interaction between children and minimal sharing of props and equipment. Although the introduction of these classes is necessary, care must be taken that the children are reintroduced to physical activity in a gradual, phased manner as we must take into consideration their reduced fitness levels. 

How Sportz Village Schools is enabling children to be fit and active?

Sportz Village Schools keep children fit and active through our in-school programs. These programs are a part of the school curriculum and ensures that children achieve the necessary amount of physical activity . These programs are implemented with the help of our dedicated trainers who are experts in their field. They are trained extensively on the Sportz Village curriculum ,both before deployment to schools as well as during refresher trainings throughout the year.  Our programs are also designed in such a way that all children irrespective of age and skill level are meaningfully engaged. The curriculum consists of different lesson plans, which focus on different fitness parameters as well as sports specific skills. The program also consist of a lot of both inter-school and intra-school events which give a children a chance to take part in competitive matches. 

Generali To Become Majority Shareholder In Indian Insurance JV

* Generali will become the majority shareholder of Future Generali India Insurance Company Limited and Future Generali India Life Insurance Company Limited 

* The move is in line with Generali’s ‘Lifetime Partner 24: Driving Growth’ strategy to strengthen its presence in fast-growing markets 

* Follows the announcement in 2021 by the IndianGovernment to permitthe increase of Foreign Direct Investment limit in the insurance sector from 49% to 74% 

* Strong market opportunity thanks to India being one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia: the size of the insurance market is around € 21 billion (March 2021), with an expected double-digit annual growth rate 

 Generali has signed agreements to become the majority shareholder in both its Life and P&C joint ventures in India. Both transactions are subject to the approval of relevant regulators. 

In the P&C business, Generali has agreed to acquire from Future Enterprises Limited 25% of the shares of Future Generali India Insurance (FGII) for a consideration of around € 145 million. After closing, Generali will hold a stake of around 74% in FGII. FGII is among the fastest growing general insurance companies in the market with a diversified product and distributor portfolio; as of March 2021 (fiscal year end for Indian insurance companies), it reported around € 450 million of premiums. 

Regarding the Life business, an agreement has been signedto acquire the entire stake(around 16%) held by Industrial Investment Trust Limited (IITL) in Future Generali India Life (FGIL) for a consideration of around € 26 million. FGIL reported around € 150 million of gross written premiums as of March 2021. In addition, Generali will subscribe to a preferential allotment of sharesin FGIL (around€ 21 million). As a result, following the closing of the transaction and completion of the preferential allotment, Generali will hold a stake of around 68% in FGIL, which may increase furtherto 71% by the end of 2022, following furtherpreferential allotment of shares. 

The transactions are fully in line with the ‘Lifetime Partner 24: Driving Growth’ strategy, strengthening Generali’s position in fast-growing markets and confirms the Group’s commitment to deliver profitable growth whilst creating value for customers, consistent with Generali’s Lifetime Partner ambition. Generali is the first player among international insurers to step-up to a majority stake in both its Indian insurance Joint Venture companies since the new foreign ownership cap came into effect.  

Following the completion of all the components of the transaction, the total estimated impact on the Group’s Regulatory Solvency Ratio will be approximately -4 p.p. in 2022. 

Jaime Anchústegui Melgarejo, CEO International, Generali Group, said: “Increasing Generali’s stake in our Indian Life and P&C insurance businesses represents a further step ahead in our growth journey in this high potential market. With an expected double-digit annual growth rate, India’s insurance market offers considerable opportunities, and we look forward to deepening our presence in this geography, becoming Lifetime Partners to an increasing share of Indian customers.” 

Rob Leonardi, RegionalOfficer, Generali Asia, said: “We’re excitedthat we are now able to consolidate our position in our Life and P&C insurance businesses, as it has always been our intention to increase our presence in India. Once the transactions are completed, we plan to do so in a way that will create more value for our more than 4 million customers, agents, partners and distributors.” 

India is one of the fastest growing insurance markets in the world, with nominal GWP growth at 10%+ CAGR over 2022-20301,2. It is uniquely attractive, thanks to its high real GDP growth(8% YoY growthexpected in 2021-20222, among the highestof south-eastern Asian countries), low insurance penetration levels (with GWP representing only 4.2%3  of GDP as at 20203) andprivate consumption and disposableincomes(expected to grow around 7% over the next 5 years2). 

Citigroup and Alvarez & Marsal acted as financial advisors to Generali on the transactions. 

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Pause For Privacy: MYn App Calls For A Nation-wide Social Media Blackout On Data Privacy Day

*  This Data Privacy Day, unplug from social media to plug into Privacy

* MYn urges the nation to show support for Right to Privacy by committing to a culture of privacy, trust, and ownership

MYn App, a made-in-India for the world Super App, calls people for a one hour nation-wide social media blackout on Friday, 28th January 2022 at 5 PM, on Data Privacy Day. MYn, an app that functions on 100% privacy and zero targeted advertisements was launched to disrupt the contemporary social media, commerce, and workplace landscape, is an advocate for Right to Privacy. This hour-long social media pause, a movement initiated by MYn App, is a sign of silent protest against all forms of privacy and data violation occurring in our day-to-day social media environment.

Access to the internet has become increasingly centralized due to modern day applications, especially social media applications, leading to a rise in concerns regarding data privacy and data security. Consumers are sharing their data, but there are no rules or regulations in place to take action in case one’s data is misused. It's about the citizens being the sovereign. Thus, Data Privacy Day is observed every year on 28th January to raise awareness around the importance of privacy, to empower individuals to stand for their personal and web privacy, to enable trust, and to create a culture of owning one’s privacy responsibilities. It is imperative that every person who is a part of the online environment today knows the where, what, and how of their personal information. Therefore, with this social media blackout, MYn calls one and all to stand in solidarity for personal and web privacy by switching off from social media for a duration of one hour and be a voice that stands for the best and safest privacy practices in the online as well as offline environment.

In light of growing concerns surrounding frequent data breaches by commonly used social media apps, MYn believes that it is only time the digital community firmly stood against the same and strived for a data-protected cyber experience. The time is now to prioritize privacy in the digital space, and one way to amplify this movement is by collectively social distancing from social media for a solid one hour on the occasion of Data Privacy Day.

How to participate in the Social Media Silence:

Spread the word about the movement and the need for data privacy.

Switch off from all social media applications from 5 to 6 PM, on 28th of January.

Encourage your friends and family to join in on the same.

Commenting on the initiative, Mr. A.S. Rajgopal, Founder, MYn App said, “I urge all media organisations, government agencies and my fellow citizens to lift up their voices against violation of data privacy, which is a pressing issue in today’s times. Privacy is a fundamental right. It is my fundamental right and your fundamental right. Let’s come together and claim what’s rightly ours. Join me in this nation-wide social media blackout on the 28th of January from 5 to 6pm, this Data Privacy Day.”

MYn is a made-in-India for the world Super App that is geared to reimagine and disrupt the current/contemporary social media, commerce, and workplace landscape. Consumers can now discover, interact and transact on a secure end-to-end encrypted system. MYn offers various services under one umbrella which includes social media, personal messaging, cloud storage, video conferencing, proximity commerce and a dedicated space for channels for content creators, users, traders and for personas (MYworld), (MYown) and (MYwork) on the app. MYn App is available for download on App Store and Google Play and offers a secure, internal communication and collaboration system for enterprises and businesses. If content creators wish to create an engaging MYn channel, they can connect with MYn team at Similarly, if an enterprise or business is keen on creating their work persona (MYwork) on MYn, they can reach out to the team at as well. 

Link to iOS download:

Link to Android download:

About Multi-Verse Technologies:

Multi-Verse Technologies Pvt. Ltd. is founded with a vision focused on solving use cases centered at the intersection of citizens, enterprises and governments using cutting edge technologies. Multi-Verse is the launchpad for the revolutionary system, MYn App, that helps citizens and enterprises discover, interact, and transact with each other leading to immense possibilities.

FICSI And Indo German Chamber Of Commerce Have Signed An MoU To Bring International Standards In Bakery Training

In a bid to match the global benchmarks in skilling, Food Industry Capacity & Skill Initiative (FICSI) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Indo German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC) to establish Centres of Excellence (CoE) for dual bakery training according to set standards of German Dual System, giving a push to endeavors focused on apprenticeship training.

The aim of the collaboration is to set up new baking-related vocational training courses in India. There is a demand for well-qualified candidates in the bakery sector, which is not met, currently. The purpose of these courses is to meet the changing requirements of the enterprises in India and global markets. The developed curriculum will be based on the needs of the Indian market, including the best practices from the German training standards for bakers. In addition, to meet the new training orientations, to achieve targets and to resolve challenges, a ‘Baker-train-the-trainer’ programme will be set up for addressing the technical as well as pedagogical elements involved in the courses.

Further, to show the impact from training and the international orientation of these dual educational training courses, an exchange programme with German vocational schools and companies for students and trainers will be established. This will include networking with the vocational schools, guilds in Germany and state partners, in turn, accelerating the apprenticeship efforts. Under the government’s initiative Vocational Training without Borders, the Indian trainees will receive 3-12 months long insights into a German bakery, imparting knowledge of German and European products along with intercultural exchange.

Commenting on the partnership, Shri Rajesh Aggarwal, Secretary, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, stated, "A high degree of specialist knowledge and skill is required to excel in bakery and the industry provides a lot of opportunities. The MoU between FISCI and IGCC is driven to bridge the skill shortage in the industry in both the countries by introducing effective courses, corresponding to new industry demands and set up vocational training centres to facilitate expertise in the sector. Our vision is to set up an Indo-German network for the baking sector which will serve as a competence carrier for Industry 4.0 in consumer goods and production. Our Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri. Narendra Modi has always expressed that globally there is a strong need for a talented workforce in several job roles, therefore, such partnerships support India’s young talent to receive these overseas employment opportunities, matching their interest with the most relevant prospects.”

Under the initiative, ways will be explored to evaluate the recruitment of trainees and their placement is Germany after they finish their training in India, making them available to internaltional markets and driving international mobility.

About Food Industry Capacity and Skill Initiative (FICSI)

Food Industry Capacity and Skill Initiative (FICSI) is the Sector Skill Council for Food Processing, an autonomous not-for-profit organisation set up under the Skill India initiative engaged in creating standards, curriculum design, training, assessment, and certification for the food processing Industry.

Indo-German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC)

The Indo-German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC) was established in 1956 for the promotion of economic relations between India and Germany. With a network of about more than 4500 members, it is the largest German-foreign Chamber in the world and the largest Chamber of Commerce in India.   It is a significant catalyst for the promotion of trade and industrial relations between India and Germany and offers numerous services like foreign trade promotion, vocational training, regional economic development, and general services to their members.

US Baesd EvGateway, Expands Its Footprint In Indian Market

Continues their global expansion with the launch of a full Electric Vehicle Charging Management solution for the Indian Market- including Portal and Driver Mobile Application Collaborates with all major EV charging manufacturers and offers variety of options for a best-in-class turnkey solutions

EvGateway, a leading turn-key Electric Vehicle (EV) Infrastructure solutions provider headquartered in California, USA with strong presence across United States, Latin America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East market, today announced the launch of its operations in India. Through this, the company will provide innovation in the Indian EV marketplace and help advance Electric Vehicle adoption, by offering easy-to-use solutions for drivers and charger owners alike. 

EvGateway provides Intelligent and advanced EV charging management services for customers of all industries and varied charging requirements. By combining the charger management features (such as OCPP & OCPI functionalities, Web portal, Demand response capabilities, Driver facing mobile app, Smart charging, and Fleet management services etc.) with the ability to integrate with EV vehicles, Energy management systems and Telematics functionalities, EvGateway will bring to the Indian market the most efficient and innovative EV solutions in the industry. 

Speaking about the expansion, Mr. Reddy Marri, President, EvGateway, said, “Our Global experience of integration of various technologies like telematics, V2G, CRMs into our SAAS platform enable us to provide effective solutions to clients of all sizes and adapt to every changing scenario.”

“A significant portion of the product was developed at our Development Centre in India and we continue to enhance the products from here. Along with the US team, we offer 24x7 support for the product from Hyderabad (We offer 24x7 support for the product from Hyderabad through our collective effort with the US team). It is indeed a moment of pride for us that we are finally bringing our product to India and contribute to its EV initiatives” added Uday Chagari, Head of EvGateway India.

“EvGateway’s suite of SAAS EV charging solutions is hosted and maintained in India regional cloud and meets the growing demands of Data security needs. EvGateway offers White Label solutions to Indian clients which enable them to invest and grow their individual brands. Our global experience in integrating Fleet Telematics, Payment gateways, OCPI roaming between networks, Load optimization, Onsite Solar and battery storage integration will provide flexibility and readiness for all different customer requirements. A parameter driven approach enables us to on-board clients with minimal effort.” added Nishanth Kalidindi, VP of Technology at EvGateway.

EvGateway will deliver advanced controls and features to Fleet operators, Large enterprises, and Charging station owners, to allow them to effectively manage and optimize their own EV infrastructure.  EvGateway is integrated with all major EV Charging manufacturers (Tritium, Siemens, Tellus Power, BTC Power, ABB, Efafec, Power Electronics, Rhombus and more) and so, can provide customers with the largest variety of options for a best-in-class turnkey offering!

About EvGateway

EvGateway is a turn-key EVSE infrastructure solutions provider with capabilities ranging from hardware procurement and networking, to payment gateway, white label software development, and 24x7 support for EV Charging stations. We partner with of some of the world’s leading companies to make charging convenient for fleets, public, and private charging scenarios.

For more information, visit

Exide Life Appoints Sanjay Vij As The New ED And Principal Officer

 Exide Life has announced the appointment of Mr. Sanjay Vij as the Executive Director and Principal Officer with effect from 10th January 2022.

On January 1, 2022, HDFC Life Insurance Company Limited (“HDFC Life”) announced the completion of the acquisition of Exide Life Insurance Company Limited (“Exide Life”), subsequent to receiving all relevant regulatory approvals. Pursuant to the agreement, there was a cash pay-out of Rs. 726 crore and 8,70,22,222 equity shares at an issue price of Rs. 685 per share were allotted to Exide Industries Limited (“Exide Industries”). Exide Industries now holds 4.1% stake in HDFC Life. The process for merger of Exide Life into HDFC Life will be initiated shortly.

Mr. Vij is a veteran in the life insurance industry. He joined HDFC Life in July 2001, and has since contributed to the company's incredible growth. As the Group Head - Bancassurance and Chief Values Officer (CVO) in HDFC Life, he was responsible for managing the P&L, market growth, and business of crucial bancassurance channels. As the CVO, he was responsible for institutionalizing and leading the EPICC values program. He was also a member of the Executive Committee (EC).

Mr. Vij brings more than 32 years of invaluable multi-industry experience in business management, performance management, business development and business strategy.

Sanjay Vij, the newly appointed ED and Principal Officer of Exide Life Insurance, said, “I am happy to see similar ethos, drive, passion and commitment making Exide Life and HDFC Life a perfect fit. Going forward, our goals and vision remain unchanged that is to provide innovative and customer centric insurance solutions that can help our customers secure their and their family's future, and in the process, become one of the most successful and admired life insurance companies in India.”

About Exide Life

Exide Life Insurance Company Limited, an established and profitable life insurance Company, commenced operations in 2001-02 and is head quartered in Bengaluru. The Company is 100% owned by HDFC Life Insurance. The Company manages assets of INR 18,381 Crores (as on 31 March, 2021). Exide Life Insurance distributes its products through multiple channels viz. Agency, Bancassurance, Corporate Agency & Broking, Direct Channel and Online. The Agency channel comprises of 40,000+ advisors attached to 200 Company offices (as on 31 March 2021) across the country. The Company also offers group life insurance solutions. The Company is focused on providing long-term protection and savings plans and has a strong traditional product portfolio with a consistent bonus track record.

The Company has ISO 9001:2015 quality certification for all Customer Service processes and the ISO/IEC 27001:2013 for Information Security Management.

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