Saturday, June 22, 2024

Bandhan Mutual Fund Launches Bandhan Nifty Total Market Index Fund

Bandhan Mutual Fund announced the launch of the Bandhan Nifty Total Market Index Fund, an open-ended index scheme tracking the Nifty Total Market Index. This fund provides investors with an opportunity to invest in a diversified portfolio that includes 750 stocks across Large, Mid, Small, and Micro caps, representing 95% of the Indian equity market. The New Fund Offer (NFO) will open on Monday, 24 June 2024, and close on Friday, 5 July 2024. Investment in the Bandhan Nifty Total Market Index Fund can be made through licensed mutual fund distributors, online platforms, and directly at

Highlighting the key reasons to consider the Nifty Total Market Index strategy, Mr. Vishal Kapoor, CEO, Bandhan AMC said, “The Total Market Fund concept has gained global popularity for its simplicity and broad coverage, with some of the largest ETFs in the world now being Total Market Funds. The Nifty Total Market Index has significantly outperformed the Nifty 50 with better risk-adjusted returns of 3.77 vs. 0.88 over one year, and similar outperformance over 3, 5, and 10 years. The Bandhan Nifty Total Market Index Fund offers comprehensive market participation across all sectors and market caps, making it a valuable addition for investors looking to benefit from India's economic success.”

The Total Market Index covers all segments mitigating the risk of losing out on the opportunity in any one segment of the market, while offering potentially stable returns. The index includes all 22 sectors of the listed stock universe, compared to the Nifty 50, which covers only 14 sectors. The Bandhan Nifty Total Market Index Fund enables investors to own a piece of the entire Indian stock market, significantly reducing the risk of predicting which market segments will excel next or overexposure to a specific sector.

API And Abbott Unveiled An Action Plan titled, ‘Optimal Treatment of Angina (OPTA): The Need Of The Hour’

 ·       API also recommended three unique OPTA tools developed by Abbott to support angina diagnosis, prognosis, and management

The Association of Physicians of India (API), along with global healthcare company Abbott, today initiated the first ever ‘Angina Awareness Week’ in India, from June 19th to June 25th. Through this, they aim to highlight the importance of early angina diagnosis and its optimal management to reduce the risk of cardiac events and improve patient outcomes. To mark this week, they collectively unveiled an Action Plan drafted by Abbott, titled, ‘Optimal Treatment of Angina (OPTA): The need of the hour,’ highlighting best standards for timely detection and management.

Dr. Ashwini Pawar, Medical Director, Abbott India said, “Angina remains an under-diagnosed condition in India, even today. As a result of this, many do not receive optimal treatment. It’s important to address this challenge given the growing burden of cardiovascular diseases, as well as its associated cost to the country of roughly 2.17 trillion US dollars between 2012 and 2030iv. With the support from Association of Physicians of India, we’re committed to driving awareness through the initiation of the ‘Angina Awareness Week’ in India to help in earlier diagnosis and optimal angina management.”

Angina, experienced as discomfort, pain, heaviness, or squeezing in the chest, is a common initial symptom of coronary artery disease. India ranks second worldwide when it comes to cardiovascular disease-related mortality, and CVDs account for 20.3% and 16.9% of annual mortality across men and women in the country respectively.[i] This makes it especially vital to pay attention to warning signs like angina, which can also result in light-headedness, discomfort in one’s arms, back, and more. Obesity is also a strong angina risk factor, especially in women compared to men. People living with diabetes also tend to report more extensive coronary disease, if unaddressed.

The comprehensive action plan uncovers insights on angina, from its disease burden to key challenges and recommendations for doctors to consider. Indians have a 20-50% higher CAD mortality rate than any other population. Also, CAD related mortality and disability rates have doubled over the last 30 years in India. Indians also frequently display atypical angina symptoms, which may lead to missed diagnoses.[ii] Such signs include shortness of breath, excessive sweating, heartburn, nausea or stable angina, a kind of chest pain that can be triggered by emotional or physical stress or exercise. Women are more likely than men to display uncommon symptoms – like jaw or neck pain, exhaustion, and non-chest discomfort, which can pose a challenge in diagnosis. This may result in doctors offering symptomatic relief solutions without addressing underlying angina causes, which is further heightened when patients deny the existence of their symptoms.

Identifying angina early is essential to start interventions and help delay disease progression, alleviate symptoms, and reduce the risk of more serious cardiac events while avoiding additional healthcare costs. Recognizing this, Abbott developed three unique tools, including the OPTA clinical checklist, OPTA questionnaire, and OPTA approach, to support angina’s diagnosis, prognosis, and medical management respectively. With API’s recommendation of the OPTA tools in clinical practice, they will help healthcare professionals with timely diagnosis, which is the first step towards optimal management.

Dr. Milind Y Nadkar, President, API, commented, “Indians experience cardiovascular diseases a decade earlier than those in western countries, which makes it vital to address the early age of onset and rapid disease progression in a timely manner.[iii] With the country also recording the highest rate of coronary artery disease worldwide, it is essential to bring more awareness to symptoms like angina, which commonly affect Indians, but are often neglected. By supporting the country’s general practitioners and cardiologists through various measures and tools, we aim to strengthen effective diagnosis and disease management.”

Others experts including Dr. V.T Shah, Senior Interventional Cardiologist, Mumbai and Dr. Agam Vora, General Secretary, API also highlighted key information on angina and coronary artery diseases.

The recommended action plan also highlights the need for healthcare practitioners adopting tools to support faster risk detection and follow a holistic management plan. In addition, minimally invasive procedures, and innovative technologies, such as devices for connected care and diagnostics that use artificial intelligence (AI), will play an important role in early detection, monitoring, and personalized treatment options. These therapies will help reduce recovery time, minimize complications, and improve patient outcomes. Overall, the future of cardiac care in India appears promising because of advances in medical technology, increasing awareness about heart health, and India’s evolving healthcare infrastructure. 

Chennai Gets Greener: Freshworks Plants 5,000+ Trees In Collaboration With Seerakku (Bhumi) NGO

What: Over 5,000 trees will be planted, with each one geo-tagged to track its growth. Dennis Woodside, CEO of Freshworks, and Shanmuga (Shyam) Anandaraman, Director of Social Impact at Freshworks will be addressing the gathering.

Why:    The primary purpose is to contribute to a greener environment by planting a significant number of trees. This aligns with the spirit of World Environment Day and focuses on Freshworks’ commitment to sustainability.

How:    Freshworks is partnering with Seerakku (Bhumi) NGO for a large-scale tree-planting event near Global Infocity, Perungudi. To track the impact of this initiative, each tree will be geo-tagged, creating a record of its location. Every employee who volunteers will be acknowledged for their contribution by receiving a digital certificate naming them a "tree owner” thereby personalizing the experience and strengthening the connection between the employees and their environmental impact.

Where:  The trees will be planted in Gov't High School Perungudi.

Asiaville IUnveils Game-Changing AIGE, To Disrupt India's Media Lanscape

* Asiaville Unveils Game-Changing AIGE: Revolutionizing Interactive Content in India

Asiaville, a pioneering Media-Tech company renowned for its trailblazing digital ventures, proudly announces the launch of its patent-pending new content plus technology format: AyeVee Interactive & Gamified Experience (AIGE). This revolutionary platform positions Asiaville as the creator of India's inaugural hyper-interactive content experience, seamlessly merging cinematic video content with interactive entertainment and gaming elements.

From its inception, Asiaville has consistently disrupted the market by challenging traditional content creation methods. Today, Asiaville reaches over 150 million monthly users with its vernacular focused digital content for Gen Y and Z audiences, delivering over 80 million monthly video views. Their latest endeavour, AIGE, is set to redefine the content consumption landscape by transforming linear storytelling into an immersive, multi directional interactive experience.

Historically, content consumption has followed a linear path, from print to big screen to small screen. Asiaville's AIGE format disrupts this trajectory by making the audience an integral part of the storytelling process. This innovative approach fosters deeper engagement, allowing users to interact, make decisions, play games and influence the narrative, thereby creating a unique and personalized experience.

Established in 2019 by Tuhin Menon and Sashi Kumar, Asiaville has become a leader in the IP-driven Media-Tech space. With a focus on native language content, Asiaville produces and distributes content across social and OTT platforms. Now, with the launch of AIGE on its app AyeVee, Asiaville is set to introduce a whole new category of entertainment.

AyeVee has rolled out two shows, "Who Killed Kavitha?" and "Let Me Out!" utilizing the game-changing AIGE format. Both shows were fully sponsored before launch, reflecting strong brand affinity for this innovative format. This unique blend of entertainment and interaction promises to redefine media consumption, offering exciting possibilities for consumers and brands alike.

Key Features of AyeVee's Interactive & Gamified Experience (AIGE) include:

* Gamified Experiences: Users immerse themselves in a world where they play games, ranging from simple to sophisticated, to advance the live-action-led storyline. Leaderboards reflect critical metrics of user performance, with winners standing a chance to win attractive prizes from show sponsors.

* Hyper-Interactive Gameplay: Users experience real-time interactions, decision-making, and personalized storylines that respond to their actions within live-action video content.

* Seamless Integration: A seamless blend of movie-like video entertainment anchors the story, while gaming and interactive experiences immerse viewers into the heart of the AIGE experience.

Tuhin Menon, Co-founder and CEO of Asiaville Interactive Pvt Ltd, said, "The launch of AIGE marks a pivotal moment for Asiaville and, we believe, for the Indian media industry as a whole. This patent-pending format is a unique mix of cinematic entertainment, interactivity, and gaming, all blended into a seamless experience that puts the user at the heart of the storytelling experience. We believe AIGE heralds a storytelling and tech powered evolution in entertainment, enhancing the viewer's connection and investment in  the content. Our focus remains on creating great IP that can migrate across social media, OTT, and now, with AIGE, into the interactive and gamified realm."

About Asiaville:

Asiaville is a leading IP driven Media-Tech company with a vernacular language digital content network that reaches over 150 million monthly users, delivering over 80 million monthly video views; premium OTT shows with global streaming platforms like Audible, Spotify, Disney Hotstar and Sony Liv; and its own app led platform AyeVee, which hosts the patent pending AIGE (AyeVee Interactive Gamified Experience) format, extending its IP into a wholly new category of entertainment

The two new launches ‘Let me out’ and' Who killed Kavitha’, both sponsored by major brands, are now available on the AyeVee app, inviting users to embark on a journey where they not only consume content but actively shape its outcome. Join Asiaville in embracing the future of media with AIGE – where entertainment meets interactivity, and gaming takes storytelling to new heights.

To Download AyeeVee App:

Bank of India Celebrated 10th International Day of Yoga (IDY)

The 10th International Day of Yoga (IDY) was celebrated by Bank of India with all zeal and enthusiasm on 21st June 2024. Mass Yoga Demonstrations based on Government’s Common Yoga Protocol (CYP) were organized at all Zonal Offices across the Nation, where bank’s staff and customers participated in huge numbers.

The programme organized at Bank’s Head Office at BKC, Mumbai was led by Shri Rajneesh Karnatak, Managing Director & CEO with active participation by Executive Directors, Chief General Managers, General Managers and staff members.  Yoga Demonstration at Head Office was conducted by Ms. Kanchan Bhosale, a renowned Yoga teacher of Mumbai.

Shri Rajneesh Karnatak, the Managing Director and CEO in his address stated that “Yoga is not just a physical exercise but a holistic practice that promotes mental clarity, physical strength, and spiritual growth. This event is our way of encouraging everyone to experience the transformative power of yoga.” He further requested all the participants to make Yoga their life style and propagate the same among their family, friends, colleagues and customers. He opined that, Yoga, an ancient Indian tradition, has transcended borders and has become a global phenomenon. Its significance lies not only in the physical postures and exercises but also in the profound impact it has on our mental and spiritual well-being. He also extended gratitude to our Honourable Prime Minister and the Government of India for their efforts in spreading awareness about the benefits of yoga across the globe.

Akshar Yoga Kendraa Scripts History, Creates 5 Guinness World Records On International Yoga Day

The Akshar Yoga Kendraa, under the visionary leadership of its founder and revered Yogi Himalayan Siddhaa Akshar, scripted history this International Yoga Day by creating 5 new Guinness World Records. Thousands of Yoga practitioners and enthusiasts from different walks of life performed 7 different Yoga asanas, including Naukasana (Boat Pose), Kaundinyasana (Sage Kaundinya Asan), Chakrasana (Wheel Posture), Natrajasana (Lord Shiva Pose), and Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation), to set the world records at an event held at the Bengaluru-based Akshar Yoga Kendraa. While they successfully created 5 Guiness World Records, a positive response on other two is awaited. The record-setting feat witnessed the participation of more than 3000 people, including members of the Indian Army, NCC, Air Force, Karnataka State Police, as well as specially-abled persons, children from orphanages, and members of the business and corporate community.

“In addition to asanas and techniques, Yoga is a holistic concept for the overall well-being of an individual’s mental and physic v al health. It has been our consistent effort to elevate the ancient practice of Yoga to fresh zeniths and make it a household practice across the world. Creating 5 new Guinness World Records on the occasion of Yoga Day, with participation from fellow citizens as well as people from 20 different countries, is an ode to the unparalleled power of Yoga. All the asanas performed have immense health benefits for everyone, especially women, who tackle numerous challenges in everyday life,” said Himalayan Siddhaa Akshar on achieving the historic feat.

He further stated that the idea behind the event was to foster a sense of global unity and collective achievement while raising awareness about the multifaceted benefits of Yoga. The accomplishment of the 5 Guinness World Records is slated to be commemorated with the issuance of a Special Cover and Postmark by the Department of Posts, under the Ministry of Communications, following the official announcement. Following comprehensive training for weeks, the participants held the 5 different asanas for durations ranging from 30 seconds to 5 minutes. 382 people performed Naukasana (Boat Pose) while 352 performed Kaundinya Asan (Sage Kaundinya Asan), Chakrasan (Wheel Posture) was performed by 390 and Natrajasan (Lord Shiva Pose) was done by 595. Total 1372 Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation) were done and thus 5 Guiness World Records were created.

The successful event has been a testament to Akshar Yoga Kendraa's commitment to Yoga, which includes effective coaching and enthusiastic participation from around the globe. Besides scripting the historic record to commemorate the 10th International Yoga Day, the Akshar Yoga Kendraa organized a series of activities designed to highlight the transformative power of yoga. Notably, Akshar Yoga Kendraa had last year entered the Guinness Book of World Records for performing three different Yoga asanas - Vashishtasana, Ushtrasana, and Halasana for the durations of 45 seconds, 60 seconds, and 90 seconds respectively.

Blue Dart Successfully Commences Drone Deliveries In Hyderabad

Blue Dart, South Asia's leading courier and integrated express package distribution company, has successfully launched drone deliveries in collaboration with Skye Air, a leader in drone technology. This move marks a significant advancement towards cleaner and more efficient delivery solutions. Building on their pioneering VLOS trials in Vikarabad, Hyderabad, in September 2021, and BVLOS trials under the Telangana Government's 'Medicine from the Sky' initiative, Blue Dart continues to lead in utilizing drone technology for logistics.

Initially focusing on the growing e-commerce sector, this innovative approach is set to revolutionize last-mile delivery by offering same-day delivery for shipments, significantly reducing delivery time and environmental impact. This milestone achievement notably coincided with World Environment Day, emphasizing Blue Dart's commitment to sustainable logistics practices.

On this initiative, Balfour Manuel, Managing Director, Blue Dart, says, “The logistics sector in India is experiencing an exhilarating phase. The nation's robust economic growth, coupled with the aspirations of its consumers and growth in Tier 2 & Tier 3 cities, has significantly boosted purchasing power. This surge in demand emphasizes the need for innovative solutions that drive growth while ensuring efficiency and sustainability. As we witness the marvel of drone technology, we eagerly anticipate extending this service further, with plans to cover additional pin codes in subsequent stages with our partners.”

With a rich legacy spanning over four decades, Blue Dart has set the standard for reliability, resilience, and responsiveness in the express logistics industry. The successful initiation of drone delivery operations further solidifies Blue Dart's position as an industry leader, reaffirming its commitment to continuous innovation and top-notch service.

Vitesco Technologies Presents “Rotor Lock Actuator For Electrified Vehicles”

* Combination of park lock, rotor position sensing and brush system for electric axles in one module

* Reduction of complexity, packaging space and costs

* Showcased during SIA POWERTRAIN in Lille, France, from June 19 to 20, 2024

Vitesco Technologies, a leading international manufacturer of advanced drive technologies and electrification solutions, is presenting the new Rotor Lock Actuator at the SIA POWERTRAIN in Lille (France). The module for electric vehicles combines three key functions in one unit. It includes a park lock function, precise rotor position sensing and optionally also the brush system for externally excited synchronous machines (EESM). This reduces complexity, packaging space on the e-axle and costs for customers.

More functionality with lower costs

To secure the parking position, the majority of electric vehicles use a mechanical park lock in the reducer gearbox in addition to the park brakes at the wheels, which also represents today's state-of-the-art solution for a safe vehicle parking condition. This takes up considerable space in the vehicle. The innovative rotor lock approach relocates this park lock functionality from the gearbox to the rotor shaft of the e-machine, creating a more streamlined and cost-effective system design.

“The key to the success of e-mobility is the reduction of costs and complexity”, explains Robert Paul, Head of the Actuation business unit at Vitesco Technologies: “By combining up to three functions in one product our Rotor Lock Actuator enables us to offer high functionality while optimizing both packaging space and costs.”

The end-of-shaft position on the rotor enables a smaller actuator, which can be easily integrated into the vehicle's drive. This high degree of mechatronic integration minimizes the space required in the vehicle, leading to a more compact packaging. Furthermore, this new position facilitates the integration of further functions in the module, such as the brush system for EESM as well as the inductive Rotor Position Sensor, which eliminates the need for separate control units, sensors and harnesses, thus saving additional costs for component integration and electrical connections.

Thanks to implemented sensing redundancy, robust cyber security measures and advanced internal diagnostics, the functional reliability and safety of the module, which is driven by a 12 V DC motor, are guaranteed. The Rotor Lock Actuator can be easily integrated into the drivetrain and communication networks, ensuring effortless installation. Thanks to the inductive Rotor Position Sensor functionality, the vehicle owner benefits from an increased range due to the optimal control of the motor commutation. The module also enhances parking safety by reducing vehicle movements when the rotor lock is engaged. The smart interface design between locking element and rotor prevents accidental engagement of the lock while driving. The lock is activated and deactivated in less than 250 milliseconds.

Vitesco Technologies at SIA POWERTRAIN 2024

The Rotor Lock Actuator will be revealed to the public for the first time during the SIA – an international powertrain trade fair – from June 19 to 20, 2024, in Lille. Moreover, Vitesco Technologies will be showcasing its High-Voltage Box for electric vehicles at the trade fair. It presents a new approach to the system architecture for charging and conversion electronics in vehicles and will be supplied to the Renault Group for battery electric vehicles as of 2025. As another highlight, the company will exhibit its EESM rotor, which, unlike PSM, does not require rare earth magnets. Combined with sophisticated winding technology, the innovative rotor can be an economical option – especially for electric vehicles with higher performance requirements.

Trane Technologies Advances “Cooling Cart initiative For Improved Livelihoods” In India

* Distributed cooling carts at no cost to street vendors for expanded pilot programs and trials in various regions across India

* Collaboration with Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs) in the state of Karnataka

* Expanded pilot program from Kolar to Karnataka, Maharashtra, Mangalore and Nigeria

Trane Technologies (NYSE: TT), a global climate innovator, has recently made significant progress in promoting climate-friendly initiatives in India. In line with the company’s 2030 Sustainability Commitments, (  it has extended its support by distributing cooling carts at no cost to street vendors. These carts are part of expanded pilot programs and trials being conducted in various regions across the country, following the development of a groundbreaking prototype cooling cart system in September 2022. The mobile cooling solution aims to protect food from excess heat while helping street vendors with the reduction in food loss and improved livelihood.

When developing the Cooling Cart, ( affordability and ease of use has been key throughout the development phase. Using the latest innovations in passive cooling technology, the revolutionary cooling cart not only effectively combats food loss but offers a solution to improve the lives of small-scale farmers, driving a step change in food systems by increasing the overall effectiveness of food management practices, particularly during the last mile delivery.

Globally, 30% of the food produced is lost or wasted, while 1.3 billion are experiencing food insecurity. In many regions of India, up to one third of food loss occurs through street vendors, due to harsh weather conditions and lack of access to affordable cooling. This food loss has a significant negative impact on vendors’ income and quality of life. Many of them earn less than $5 a day and are the sole family providers. With this Cooling Cart system, which includes an overnight storage capability, it is expected that the shelf-life of fresh fruits and vegetables will be extended by at least 1-2 days. This means that street vendors will be able to sell more food as opposed to throwing it away, thus also increasing their potential net income.

The prototype of the Cooling Cart has proven to be highly effective over the past two years, significantly extending the shelf life of perishable food. Following the initial launch in the municipality of Kolar, the pilot program has successfully been expanded to cover Karnataka, Maharashtra, Mangalore and Nigeria. A total of 15 carts were distributed to local street vendors, who provided positive feedback, highlighting the transformative potential of the Cooling Cart in effecting tangible changes.

In addition to collaboration with academic institutions like the Cambridge Institute of Technology and University of Vermont's Grossman School of Business to explore scalable solutions, Trane Technologies is also partnering with members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs) from Karnataka state towards widespread adoption of the cooling solution. Through strategic collaboration with the Section Infin-8 Foundation, an impactful initiative has been implemented in Karnataka. With strong support from these MLAs, this initiative holds immense potential in facilitating introductions to central government officials, further streamlining the company’s progress.

“We are truly thankful for the opportunity to collaborate with Trane Technologies in bringing this innovative solution to our community,” said Vishwas Uchila Shishir, Director Section Infin-8 Foundation, “The Cooling Cart initiative will not only enhance the efficiency of street vendors, but will also contribute to their overall well-being by enabling them to store and display their products in a more hygienic and convenient manner.”

Wilson Lawrence, Vice President & General Manager of India Engineering & Technology Center, Trane Technologies said, “As we continue to scale up this transformative initiative, we are committed to advancing the design of the next-generation Cooling Cart to improve its user-friendliness, durability and cost-effectiveness. We are actively seeking partnerships with organisations like the UNDP and WFP to broaden our impact and reach more needy vendors, thereby significantly enhancing local community livelihoods.”

The Cooling Cart was developed under the company’s Operation Possible initiative, an employee-powered social innovation program to directly confront some of the world’s most pressing challenges, aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Shirin Salis, Vice President of Human Resources at Trane Technologies said, “Operation Possible is more than just an incubator for transformative ideas, it's a catalyst for collaboratively addressing environmental, social and economic disparities. With a shared commitment to progress, the Cooling Cart initiative unites diverse and inclusive voices to drive meaningful change. It has contributed to a culture of innovation and we’re proud to be counted amongst India’s 50 Best workplaces building a culture of Innovation by All; by the Great Place To Work® Institute.”

For decades, Trane Technologies has been a climate innovator with a commitment to boldly challenge what’s possible for a sustainable world. The company makes bold 2030 Sustainability Commitments and is set on a path toward developing new standards for technology that enhance the health and well-being of people and the planet.

EKA Mobility Announces "Second Tranche Investment" From Mitsui & Co., Ltd.

EKA (Pinnacle Mobility Solutions) announces Mitsui & Co., Ltd. ("Mitsui"), a global trading and investment company with a rich history of contributing to industrial innovation, has executed a second tranche investment as a part of the initially announced phased investment, further solidifying their commitment to the rapidly growing electric vehicle (EV) company. This strategic infusion of capital will be directed towards capital expenditures (Capex) and working capital, supporting EKA Mobility’s continued expansion and innovation in the EV sector. This tranche also establishes an attractive valuation benchmark for the company and is testimony to the rapid growth that EKA is witnessing. 

In December 2023, EKA, Mitsui & VDL Groep entered into a strategic long-term partnership, that included joint investments of USD 100 million (~ INR 850 crores) in phases, equity, and technology cooperation to create a leading global OEM in India. This is one of the largest and most significant partnerships in the new mobility segment globally. Under the cooperation, EKA Mobility will receive significant and strategic investments from Mitsui, and technological support & equity partnership from VDL Groep, a leading Dutch technology and manufacturing company. As part of this partnership, VDL Bus & Coach, a subsidiary of VDL Groep and Europe’s frontrunner in electric buses & coaches will support EKA Mobility by transfer-of-technology to produce electric buses in India for the Indian market. 

Earlier this year, Mitsui invested its maiden tranche in EKA which propelled the company to establish one of the largest R&D centres in the country for electric commercial vehicles, new product development, and expanding its export footprints. The second tranche will support EKA Mobility's manufacturing capabilities, accelerate new product development, expand market reach, and provide working capital. The investment will strengthen the company’s financial base to support day-to-day operations, supply chain optimization, and market expansion initiatives.

"We are thrilled to deepen our partnership with EKA Mobility through the investment of this second tranche," said Mr. Hiroshi Takeuchi — Deputy General Manager of Mobility Business Unit 1 of Mitsui. "EKA Mobility has demonstrated strong growth and innovation in the EV space, and we are excited to support their continued success. We look forward to utilizing Mitsui's global network to promote exporting EKA's competitive products to overseas markets. This investment aligns with Mitsui's strategic focus on sustainable and forward-looking industries, and we are confident that EKA Mobility will play a pivotal role in the future of transportation."

EKA, headquartered in Pune, India, has been at the forefront of the commercial electric mobility revolution, developing a range of electric buses in 7mtr, 9mtr & 12mtr categories, intercity coaches, and a range of electric light commercial vehicles. EKA is also one of the commercial vehicle manufacturers approved under the Government of India’s Auto PLI policy. Mitsui's renewed investment underscores its confidence in EKA Mobility's vision, technology, and market potential.

Dr. Sudhir Mehta, Founder of EKA (Pinnacle Mobility Solutions), expressed his gratitude for Mitsui’s continued support: "We are immensely grateful to Mitsui & VDL Groep for their unwavering confidence and sustained investment in EKA Mobility. The continued investment support will enable us to accelerate our growth trajectory, bring innovative EV solutions to market faster, and further our mission to create a sustainable and green transportation ecosystem. We look forward to a long and successful partnership with Mitsui & VDL."

The company’s order book has significantly grown to 1000+ electric buses and 5000+ electric light commercial vehicles. Given the wide acceptance of EKA buses in Delhi and Greater Mumbai, the next few months are likely to witness a surge in electric bus orders and the company is well-positioned to capture and fulfill them.

Funskool's Homegrown Brands Launch “New Range of Exciting Toys And Games”

* Aimed at stimulating the senses and developing cognitive and motor skills, these products make learning possible – the fun way

Funskool India, India's leading toy manufacturer, has launched a special range of 18 unique toys and games aimed at entertaining and educating children this season. The range caters to toddlers and children up to 14 years.  The newly launched products span across several categories, including Giggles, Games, Fundough, Handycraft and Play & Learn.

Commenting on the new products, R. Jeswant, CEO of Funskool India Ltd, said, “Funskool is known for prioritising holistic development of children while developing any new product. These 18 products are no different. Our in-house design team has ensured that children experience fun and also learn while playing with our products. We work hard to bring out unique products which are in line with the expectations of the new generation and the parents, as well.” 

Water play table, Bear Melody Crib mobile, sensory Rattle trio, dazzling duck family and rattle strider have been introduced in the Giggles category while Puzzle pads, 5-letter Wordlet, Ultimate Pub Trivia and Travel Games have been launched in the Games category. Lil’ Road Explorer and  Fundough Doughasaurus have hit the stands under the Fundough category,  while Warli Art and Twilight Treasure have been launched in the Handycraft category.  Peg Pixels Vehicles, Peg Pixels Unicorn, Flamingo Sunset 1000 pcs puzzle, Bright Sunset 300 pcs puzzle and Lets Learn International Personalities have been launched under the label Play & Learn is sure to interest the children.

The products are priced between Rs 299 and Rs 2499. These unique toys and games are available at major toy retailers and can also be purchased through e-commerce sites.

Bank of Baroda Onboards “Rising Indian Tennis Sensation- Sumit Nagal As Its Brand Endorser”

* In line with the Bank’s ethos to extend early support to Indian athletes helping them unlock their full potential

* A role model for today’s youth, Sumit will help the Bank connect with GenNext

Bank of Baroda (Bank), one of India’s leading public sector banks announced that the Bank has signed rising Indian tennis player Mr. Sumit Nagal as its brand endorser. The move is in alignment with the Bank’s long-standing philosophy to support emerging talented and ambitious Indian sportspersons as they endeavour to compete with the best on the world stage.

Aged 26 years, Sumit Nagal will be strategically positioned by the Bank to target a younger demographic and a new generation of customers with a range of products specifically designed for this segment.

The highest-ranked Indian singles tennis player currently, Sumit has jumped to a career-high singles ranking of World No. 71 on 17th June 2024, while securing a place in the Indian contingent for the Paris Olympics in the process. In January 2024, Sumit became the first Indian player in 35 years to defeat a seeded player in a Grand Slam men’s singles match at the Australian Open 2024.

Sumit joins a stellar line-up of Bank of Baroda endorsers that includes badminton star PV Sindhu and cricketing youth icon Shafali Verma.

Commenting on the association, Shri Debadatta Chand, Managing Director & CEO, Bank of Baroda said, “Bank of Baroda has a rich legacy of partnering with and extending its support to some of India’s most promising sporting talent early on in their careers.  We are delighted to welcome Sumit Nagal to the Bank of Baroda family. Tennis is a global, highly competitive and demanding sport and this makes Sumit’s journey and what he’s aspiring to achieve all the more inspiring and extraordinary. The collaboration between Bank of Baroda and Sumit will also go a long way in promoting the sport in India and helping the Bank reach out to a younger audience.”

“Sumit’s commitment, perseverance, passion and authenticity are just some of the attributes that define him; values that Bank of Baroda holds dear as well. 2024 is already proving to be a breakthrough year for Sumit and over 80,000 Barodians are cheering for him as he strives to achieve his dreams and make the country proud,” added Shri Chand.

Sumit Nagal said, “I am honoured and privileged to be associated with Bank of Baroda and would like to thank them for putting their confidence in me. Bank of Baroda is a leading, trusted Indian financial services institution that empowers the dreams and ambitions of millions and I eagerly look forward to this association.”

Born on 16th August 1997, Sumit started playing tennis at the age of 8. He won the 2015 Wimbledon boys doubles title. Sumit is the first Indian to reach a Grand Slam singles main draw in 3 years at the Australian Open 2024 and the first Indian ever to win 2 ATP Challenger singles titles in Europe. Recently, in April 2024, Sumit became the first Indian player in 49 years to qualify for the main draw of the Monte Carlo Masters tournament and the first Indian men’s player ever to win a Masters 1000 match on clay, defeating Matteo Arnaldi in the round of 64.

Friday, June 21, 2024

Bounteous x Accolite Revamps Kannagi Nagar School Infrastructure, Empowering Over 1500 Students

* Aims to empower students with essential skills and reduce dropout rates, enabling them to become first generation graduates.

* Dr. V. Irai Anbu inaugurated the revamped school and motivated the students

Bounteous x Accolite, a global leader in IT services, has undertaken a significant initiative to revitalize the Government Higher Secondary School (GHSS) in Kannagi Nagar, Chennai. The company has partnered with the NGO Ladies Circle India Trust to upgrade the school’s infrastructure. Dr. V. Irai Anbu, former Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary inaugurated the revamped school that caters to 1500 students from grades 6 to 12. He motivated the students and emphasized the importance of education.

Kannagi Nagar, one of India’s largest resettlement sites, houses over 80,000 people, many displaced from their original homes by the tragic 2004 tsunami. According to a  study, only 10% of children in Kannagi Nagar had access to educational facilities. With only 2,000 school seats available for 20,000 school-going children, the area faces a 35% dropout rate among 15–18-year-olds, and 42% of students commute over 20 km to other schools. Established in 2004, GHSS has been struggling with inadequate infrastructure for years.

Before this intervention, GHSS Kannagi Nagar faced numerous challenges, including overcrowded classrooms, insufficient furniture, poor electrical fixtures and safety issues due to a lack of proper infrastructure. Recognizing these pressing needs, Bounteous x Accolite collaborated with Ladies Circle India Trust to execute a comprehensive renovation project aimed at transforming the school environment.

Key improvements included repairing roofs and floors to enhance safety, installing new benches, desks, and green boards to create more conducive learning environments, electrical upgrades and erecting a secure compound wall with a gate to bolster safety measures. Additionally, Bounteous x Accolite facilitated the setup of a modern computer lab equipped with 12 laptops and 26 desktops to boost digital literacy among students and prepare them for future academic and career pursuits.

The upgrades have had a profound impact, as evidenced by the positive feedback from students and educators. J. Jayshri, a class IX student, expressed her enthusiasm, stating, "When I joined the school, the infrastructure was in a very bad state. When it rained, the water seeped through the roof, and when it was hot, it was unbearable to sit inside with no fans. Now, the new benches, freshly painted classrooms, and pleasant atmosphere make me excited to come to school every day”.

Mrs. Andeshwari, the school's Head Mistress, highlighted the transformative impact of the initiative, stating, "The renovation has brought a renewed sense of pride and motivation among both students and teachers. The improvements have made the school safer, more functional, and instilled a sense of discipline and belonging in our students."

“This initiative at GHSS Kannagi Nagar underscores the potential for corporate partnerships to drive meaningful change in educational institutions, setting a positive example for community involvement and social responsibility,” said Leela Kaza, Founder and Co-CEO of Bounteous x Accolite. We aim to create an environment that encourages students to enroll in the school and reach their full potential by cultivating essential skills required to become first-time graduates. We are proud to partner with Ladies Circle India Trust in this endeavor and look forward to seeing the students thrive”.  

Looking ahead, Bounteous x Accolite plans to continue supporting GHSS Kannagi Nagar with initiatives focused on holistic student development, including skill-building programs to prepare students for future academic and career opportunities.

About Bounteous x Accolite:

Bounteous x Accolite makes the future faster for the world’s most ambitious brands. Our services span Strategy, Analytics, Digital Engineering, Cloud, Data & AI, Experience Design, and Marketing. We are guided by Co-Innovation, our proven methodology of collaborative partnership. Bounteous x Accolite brings together 5,000+ employees spanning North America, APAC, and EMEA, and partnerships with leading technology providers. Through advanced digital engineering, technology solutions, and data-driven digital experiences, we create exceptional and efficient business impact and help our clients win.

About Ladies Circle India Trust:

Ladies Circle India, known as LC India, is a non-political and non-sectarian organization. It offers opportunities for serving the community, fostering and strengthening friendships between like-minded young women, and creating a better understanding of the obligations one owes to society. Today, Ladies Circle India comprises over 1800 members with 133 active Circles spread across India, with a presence in 19 states and 57 cities.

Pre-Launch Bookings For The All-New BMW 5 Series Long Wheelbase

Eighth generation of the BMW 5 Series will be available in India as a Long Wheelbase.

Available for pre-booking at all BMW India dealerships and at BMW Online shop from 12:00 Hrs, 22 June 2024.

Launch of the all-new BMW 5 Series Long Wheelbase is scheduled for 24 July 2024.

#The5LWB #BMWIndia

BMW India will open bookings for the all-new BMW 5 Series Long Wheelbase from 12:00 Hrs, 22 June 2024 onwards. The car will be locally produced at BMW Group Plant Chennai and can be pre-booked at the BMW dealership network and through BMW Online shop.

The all-new BMW 5 Series Long Wheelbase will be launched in India on 24 July 2024.

The all-new BMW 5 Series Long Wheelbase represents outstanding technological expertise and a progressive attitude. Sporty elegance, groundbreaking technology and luxurious space at the rear are all combined in the all-new BMW 5 Series Long Wheelbase. Adapted in numerous details to the specific requirements of Indian target groups, this all-new business sedan features an extended wheelbase and distinctive proportions. This results in a particularly generous space and comfort in the rear, which is further enhanced by exclusive equipment features.

Customers can visit and explore a 360° view of the car’s exterior and interior. They will be directed to a bookings page where booking can be done through a secure online payment mechanism. Thanks to BMW Financial Services India, customers will also enjoy the flexibility to avail BMW 360 Finance plan in the booking phase itself.

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra Now Available in Refreshing Titanium Yellow Colour

Samsung, India’s largest consumer electronics brand, today announced the introduction of a refreshing new Titanium Yellow colour to Galaxy S24 Ultra, which will go on sale in India starting today. Galaxy S24 Ultra is currently available in Titanium Gray, Titanium Violet and Titanium Black. The addition of the new Titanium Yellow colour will give more choices to consumers looking to purchase Galaxy S24 Ultra.

The ‘Made in India’ Galaxy S24 Ultra powered by Galaxy AI, enhances and redefines the phone’s most fundamental role – communication – with powerful features such as Live Translate, Interpreter, Chat Assist, Note Assist and Transcript Assist features.

Galaxy S24 Ultra marks a milestone in the history of search as the first phone to debut intuitive, gesture-driven Circle to Search with Google. Users can circle, highlight, scribble on, or tap anything on Galaxy S24 Ultra’s screen to see helpful, high-quality search results with just a fraction of the effort taken in a traditional search.

Galaxy S24 Ultra’s ProVisual Engine is a comprehensive suite of AI-powered tools that transform image capturing abilities and maximize creative freedom. The Quad Tele System on Galaxy S24 Ultra now comes with a new 5x optical zoom lens that works with the 50MP sensor to enable optical-quality performance at zoom levels from 2x, 3x, 5x to 10x, enabling users to take professional-grade photographs. Images also show crystal clear results at 100x with enhanced digital zoom.

Nightography capabilities have also been upgraded on Galaxy S24 Ultra thanks to its 1.4 ?m pixel size which is 60% bigger. Wider optical image stabilizer (OIS) angles and enhanced hand-shake compensation help reduce blur. Both front and rear cameras are equipped with Dedicated ISP Block for noise reduction. All these features make Galaxy S24 Ultra the perfect device at capturing special moments.

Performance and durability are core foundations of Galaxy S24 Ultra. Galaxy S24 Ultra is equipped with Snapdragon® 8 Gen 3 Mobile Platform for Galaxy that delivers remarkable NPU improvement for incredibly efficient AI processing. Galaxy S24 Ultra comes equipped with 1.9 times larger vapor chamber, improving device surface temperature while also maximizing sustained performance power. Ray tracing enables life-like visuals with superior shadow and reflection effect. Galaxy S24 Ultra reaches 2600 nit peak brightness, making it the brightest Galaxy smartphone ever. Corning® Gorilla® Armor on the Galaxy S24 Ultra is optically enhanced for superior durability.

Galaxy S24 Ultra is secured by Samsung Knox for safeguarding critical information and protection against vulnerabilities with end-to-end secure hardware, real-time threat detection and collaborative protection.

Galaxy S24 Ultra continues Samsung’s commitment to extending the product lifecycle, offering seven generations of OS upgrades and seven years of security updates to help users reliably experience the optimized performance of their Galaxy devices for even longer.

Price and Availability

Galaxy S24 Ultra Titanium Yellow will be available across all leading online and offline retail stores.

Manipal Academy of Higher Education Celebrates International Day of Yoga 2024

Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) celebrated the International Day of Yoga on June 21, 2024, with the theme "Yoga for Self and Society." The event was coordinated by the Division of Yoga, Centre for Integrative Medicine & Research (CIMR), and witnessed the participation of 350 students, staff, faculty, and local community members.

The celebration began with a yoga practice session at the Indoor Futsal Court, Marena Sports Complex, Manipal, at 8:00 AM. The session was led by Dr. Annapoorna K., Head of the Division of Yoga, CIMR. Participants engaged in a range of yogic practices following the UGC protocol, including various asanas, pranayama, and relaxation techniques.

Following the yoga practice, a stage programme commenced at 9:00 AM at the same venue. The event was hosted by Dr. Lavya Shetty, Assistant Professor, and Dr. Divya Poojary, PG Student. Distinguished guests included Dr. HS Ballal, Pro Chancellor, MAHE; Dr. Sharath Kumar Rao, Pro Vice Chancellor, Faculty of Health Sciences; Shri T. Satish U. Pai, Executive Chairman, Manipal Media Network Ltd and Vice President, Academy of General Education; Dr. P. Giridhar Kini, Registrar, MAHE; Mrs. Indira Ballal, Philanthropist; and Dr. Satish Rao, Director Research, MAHE & Director, Manipal School of Life Sciences.

The programme began with an invocation by Dr. Athmika Shetty, followed by a welcome address from Dr. B.S. Satish Rao. Dr. Annapoorna K. provided an overview of the activities and competitions held over the past three months, emphasizing the importance of yoga for holistic health and well-being. Dr. Sharath Kumar Rao highlighted the significance of the International Day of Yoga, urging daily yoga practice. Certificates and prizes for various yoga competitions were distributed by Dr. P. Giridhar Kini. The event included the felicitation of notable individuals by Mrs. Indira Ballal.

Dr. HS Ballal delivered the presidential address, underscoring the benefits of asanas and pranayama. The event concluded with a yoga demonstration by M.Sc. Yoga Therapy students. The celebration was organized under the leadership of Dr. B.S. Satish Rao and Dr. Annapoorna K., with contributions from the teaching and non-teaching staff of the Division of Yoga, CIMR, and M.Sc. Yoga Therapy students. The event concluded with a vote of thanks by Dr. Neetinakumar J Patil, Associate Professor, Division of Yoga, CIMR, MAHE.

Weber Shandwick Launches ‘Elections Matter: India Report’

* Stark gender and generational differences in news consumption and election sentiments

Weber Shandwick India, today launched the “Elections Matter: India Report”. The survey led by the Corporate Advisory and Public Affairs practice, examined election sentiments around news consumption habits, trust in different information sources and voting behaviours and motivations among Gen Z (18-24 years) and Millennial (25-44) consumers in India.

Key findings

Media consumption behaviour w.r.t. current events, news & politics

Generational differences in news consumption: Stark contrast exists in news engagement between Millennials and Gen Zs. Over 55% of Millennials followed news daily, compared to about 36% of Gen Z with males significantly more inclined to current events, news & politics. While TV is among the top 3 news sources, there was a significantly lower preference among Gen Zs (44%) compared to Millennials (60%).

Reaffirmation of digital consumption surge: YouTube is the leading platform for consumption of current events, news and politics, in keeping with the digital media uptake. It was the dominant information source across all demographics, particularly driven by Delhi, while TV channels were on top in Chennai and Bangalore. It was followed closely by Instagram, TV, and WhatsApp.

Most watched is necessarily not the most trusted: Google search, print media, and digital news media had a higher trust quotient compared to most social media platforms.

Traditional media resonating stronger for Millennials: Print media continued to have higher acceptance among Millennials. 45% Millennials consumed print media for news and politics compared to only 31% Gen Zs. This preference pattern was evident even in the consumption pattern for television. South India especially Chennai and Bangalore had a stronger leaning to television than the rest of India. Also, 42% males favoured print versus 33% of women. Print media was also high on trust compared to most social media platforms.

Concerns about misinformation: After fake news websites, social media influencers topped the list for spreading misinformation. Males in particular were especially distrustful of them.

Sentiments towards elections & voting

Motivated Millennials and less enthusiastic Gen Zs: Millennials were significantly motivated by elections and voting due to a strong sense of civic duty and the desire for educational reform. Chennai and Hyderabad had a higher sentiment comparatively towards elections.

In contrast, Gen Z showed less enthusiasm, hinting at a potential apathy in political engagement.

Priority issues for elections and new government expectations: Civic and social factors such as infrastructure development, outweighed economic concerns and party manifesto promises as primary voting motivations across gender and generational cohorts. The state of the economy and education were the most pressing issues both for the current elections and future government focus, reflecting widespread concerns about socio-economic and educational development. This shift suggested a future-oriented approach to polling, with voters seeking macro-level changes for a better future.

Regional differences in voting motivations: Voters in Delhi focused on infrastructure development, while those in southern regions, such as Chennai and Bangalore, prioritized voting for candidates who promised to bring about change and impactful leadership.

Gender-specific concerns towards elections: While economy, education and public safety were perceived to be among the top priorities for the recent elections, women were particularly interested in women empowerment issues, highlighting the importance of gender-specific policy agendas. Also, over 55% would like the new government to focus on economy, education and healthcare agendas.

Commenting on the consumer survey findings, Rohan Kanchan, MD – Consulting and Head of Public Affairs, Weber Shandwick India, said, “This report underscores the dynamic nature of news consumption and electoral engagement in today’s digital age. Even as broader generational trends are known, nuances within the cohorts reveal a break from the pattern. For instance, the connection of Influencers in consumer motivations vis-a-vis trust in perception, might have implications in analyzing corporate reputation and development of future strategies. Our national commonalities peppered with our regional disparities, continue to provide an interesting lens to any consumer study such as Elections Matter.”

The survey was conducted by YouGov among 1,000 respondents from the top 10 cities in India, including Mumbai, Delhi-NCR, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, Lucknow, Jaipur, and Ahmedabad. The demographics of the survey were balanced, with a near-equal split between males (51%) and females (49%), and evenly distributed between Gen Zs and Millennials.

About Weber Shandwick:

Weber Shandwick is the earned-first global communications agency. Led by world-class strategic and creative thinkers and activators, Weber Shandwick has won some of the most prestigious awards in the industry, including being named #1 in the Public Relations and Brand Strategies category on Fast Company’s 2024 Most Innovative Companies list, PRWeek’s 2024 Global Agency of the Year, one of Fast Company’s Best Workplace for Innovators in 2023, PRovoke’s Global Agency of the Year in 2023 and being the most awarded PR agency at the 2023 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Weber Shandwick has been honored on Ad Age’s?A-List in 2024 and 2020 and Best Places to Work in 2019, in addition to being awarded PR Agency of the Year by?Campaign US?in 2021, honored as?PRovoke’s?Global Agency of the Decade in 2020 and ranking #1 on PRovoke’s Global Creative Index in 2021 and 2022. Additionally, the firm was named PRWeek’s?Global Agency of the Year in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 and was awarded PRWeek’s Purpose Agency of the Year in 2020 and 2021. Weber Shandwick also received?Honorable Mention (and the only PR agency) on the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Global Marketing Agencies in 2021.?Part of the Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG), Weber Shandwick is the anchor agency within The Weber Shandwick Collective (TWSC) –?the strategic communications and consulting network. Cumulatively, TWSC has earned more than?190?Cannes Lions. For more information, visit?

AGS Transact Technologies Appoints Vinayak R Goyal As Managing Director Of Digital Payment Subsidiary India Transact Services Ltd

AGS Transact Technologies Limited (BSE: 543451 & NSE: AGSTRA), one of the largest integrated omni-channel payment solutions providers in India in terms of providing digital and cash-based solutions to banks and corporate clients, announces the appointment of Vinayak R Goyal as the Managing Director of its wholly owned subsidiary India Transact Services Limited (ITSL), which offers digital payment solutions. Vinayak previously served as Non-Executive and Non-Independent Director at ITSL, from June 9, 2021 up to June 16, 2024.

Vinayak R Goyal has been an Executive Director on the board of AGS Transact Technologies Limited since 2021. He has been instrumental in developing the growth roadmap for the company’s digital payment business, focusing on driving the Issuance business with initiatives such as Ongo open-loop prepaid cards. Under his guidance, the company is currently pilot testing the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) into the Ongo app, enhancing its capabilities for seamless transactions. Additionally, Vinayak is overseeing the development of a contactless open-loop fuel payment solution within the Ongo app. Furthermore, under his leadership, the Company has made significant headway through strategic collaborations in its Prepaid business.

Commenting on the appointment, Mr. Ravi B. Goyal, Chairman & MD, AGS Transact Technologies Limited said, “Vinayak’s appointment reinforces our commitment to strengthening our leadership team and driving sustained growth in the rapidly evolving digital payment landscape. As a representative of the new generation, Vinayak brings a unique viewpoint and innovative approach to our digital payment strategy. I am confident that his leadership will be pivotal as we continue to expand our digital payment solutions and enhance our offerings to better serve our customers.”

Mr. Vinayak R Goyal, MD, India Transact Services Limited, said, “Stepping into this role, I'm humbled to lead our digital payments business forward into a new era of innovation and growth. Together with our exceptional team, we're dedicated to shaping the future of digital transactions, focused on delivering seamless experiences for customers across the sectors."

Vinayak R Goyal brings a total work experience of over 9 years across areas such as Business Strategy, Investment Banking, and Fund Raising. He has previously worked with Avendus Capital Private Limited as an Analyst. He holds a degree from Purdue University, USA.

About AGS Transact Technologies Limited (AGSTTL)

Established in 2002, AGS Transact Technologies Limited (BSE: 543451| NSE: AGSTRA) is one of the largest integrated omni-channel payment solutions providers in India in terms of providing digital and cash-based solutions to banks and corporate clients. AGS Transact provides customised products and services comprising ATM and CRM outsourcing, cash management and digital payment solutions including merchant solutions, transaction processing services and mobile wallets. The company operates in three broad business segments, namely, Payment Solutions; Banking Automation Solutions; and Other Automation Solutions.

Ongo is a fast-growing omnichannel digital payment platform by AGS Transact Technologies, which offers convenient payment solutions. Launched in 2015, Ongo offers merchant Acquiring and Prepaid Issuance services. Ongo is a non-bank prepaid payment instrument and offers dedicated open-loop Prepaid solutions for consumers in segments.

AGS Transact Technologies serves diverse industries such as banking, retail, petroleum, toll and transit, cash management and fintech in India and other select countries in Asia. As of March 31, 2024, the company has deployed 248,585 payment terminals and was one of the largest deployers of PoS terminals at petroleum retail outlets in India, having rolled out 41,756 terminals at various petroleum retail outlets.

For more information, visit

Introducing Dobra Tapioca Crisps: A Tail Of Modern Recipes With A Traditional Twist

Oxbow Brands is ecstatic to present a premium range of kettle cooked range of Dobra Tapioca Crisps, a gourmet collection with a twist of Indian and Global Flavours for indulgent snacking. Drawing inspiration from the celebrated dishes of Kerala, where tapioca chips are a staple in every house hold, this new offering is the epitome of the brands commitment to high quality, and authentic taste.

Tapioca crisps are naturally gluten-free, high on protein and nutritious substitute for regular potato chips.

Dobra Tapioca crisps offer the Tapioca crisps in exciting Plain Salted, Extra Cheesy, Spicy Kari, Garlic Pickle, Smoky Barbeque, Tangy Tomato, Desi Wasabi flavors to entice all kinds of taste pallets

The exquisite range of Dobra Tapioca Crisps is a celebration of nostalgia and unique flavors, curated to elevate your snacking experience of indulgence, ensuring great taste and nutrition on-the-go.

"We are thrilled to introduce Dobra Tapioca Crisps, a fun twist to traditional recipes offering a nutritiously fulfilling experience" said Rahul Johar Founder & CEO of Oxbow Brands. "With Dobra Tapioca crisps, we aim to elevate the snacking game and offer the real flavours of kettle cooked chips.

Not only a satisfying snack made with freshly sourced tapioca, Dobra Tapioca crisps also serve as an excellent appetizers or side options with your main meal adding a unique twist to your home cooked food.

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Pocket FM Teams Up With ElevenLabs; Launches AI Audio Series To Build World’s First Voice AI Capability To Empower Writers

* AI Audio Series has improved its production efficiency multi-fold, and empowered writers to turn their stories into audio series on Pocket FM with one simple click.

Pocket FM and ElevenLabs have joined forces to revolutionize content creation with the launch of AI Audio Series, a cutting-edge Voice AI capability now accessible worldwide. This groundbreaking partnership marks a new chapter in storytelling, empowering writers to effortlessly convert their narratives into compelling audio series with remarkable ease.

The partnership between Pocket FM and ElevenLabs signifies a significant leap forward in Voice AI technology. By harnessing ElevenLabs' expertise in this field, Pocket FM has achieved remarkable milestones in its experimental phase, slashing costs by up to 90%. With this integration, the company has multiplied its production efficiency as well. These advancements not only make audio series creation more accessible but also foster inclusivity within the writing community.

“This is a game-changing, industry-first innovation, disrupting the norm by enabling writers to seamlessly transform their stories into captivating audio series with a single click of a button" stated Prateek Dixit, CTO and Co-founder of Pocket FM. "By enabling this, we've not only empowered the writing community but also made audio series creation faster and simpler, making storytelling accessible  for everyone.”

Pocket FM has successfully produced over 30,000 hours of audio series during its experimental phase and anticipates tripling its content library this year. Currently boasting a collection of over 100,000 hours of audio series, the platform has garnered positive user feedback on its AI Audio Series, with engagement levels matching that of human voice quality.

The platform has empowered writers to bring their stories to life through audio series. By simply navigating to the "Write" tab in the Pocket FM app and selecting "Series," writers can initiate the storytelling process. After ensuring it meets the minimum word count, they can effortlessly convert their story into an audio series with a mere tap, with an option to choose their preferred voice and background music.

“We are excited to collaborate with Pocket FM in shaping the future of audio entertainment,” stated Mati Staniszewski, CEO, and Co-founder of ElevenLabs. “Combining our Voice AI expertise with Pocket FM’s innovative approach to audio series promises to take content production to new heights of efficiency and creativity. It’s an exciting journey ahead, one that we believe will set new standards in the entertainment industry.”

As Pocket FM continues to redefine entertainment with its innovative audio series, and with the company's expansion into various regions across Europe and LATAM, this collaboration will accelerate content strategy and enhance efficiency in content generation. Currently, Pocket FM boasts strong leadership positions in the U.S. and India, drawing audiences from more than 20 countries worldwide.

Beyond publishing, ElevenLabs delivers lifelike, realistic, and emotionally rich AI voices for various applications across 29 languages: from conversational AI and gaming to movie dubbing, as well as medical and accessibility uses. The company offers these capabilities through a number of proprietary audio AI models optimized for specific purposes, such as long-form and multilingual speech generation, AI dubbing, or latency-sensitive tasks.

About Pocket FM:  

Founded in 2018, Pocket FM was built with a vision to redefine the audio OTT space by pioneering the audio-series category. We pride ourselves in embedding the storytelling elements with a layer of content personalization in the longer format that resulted in the emergence of “binge listening” as a consumption habit. Being the only audio entertainment OTT, we have emerged as the preferred digital audio destination for a refined storytelling experience with the audio-series format, riding on our diverse and engaging content. 

The Pocket FM app is available on iOS and Android. To learn more, visit Write to us for more information - 

About ElevenLabs

ElevenLabs researches and builds audio AI tools for creators, media, and businesses. Their models use proprietary methods for context awareness and high compression to deliver lifelike, compelling, and nuanced speech, voices, and sound effects across 29 languages. The company’s AI tools are used to voice audiobooks and news articles, animate video game characters, help in film pre-production, localize media in entertainment, create dynamic audio content for social media and advertising, and train medical professionals. It has also given back voices to those who have lost them and helped individuals with accessibility needs in their daily lives.

MAHE-UNB Preceptorship Program Welcomes Second Cohort In Canada

Fredericton, Canada – As part of the academic collaboration between Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) and the University of New Brunswick (UNB), the second cohort of seven students commenced the MAHE-UNB Preceptorship program, a key component of UNB's Summer Institute. This initiative, aimed at earning a dual nursing degree, qualifies students to practice in both India and Canada.

The preceptorship program began with a warm welcome ceremony on June 17 at the Harriet Irving Library on UNB’s Fredericton campus. The students, accompanied by faculty members Dr. Linu Sara George, Professor, and Mr. Vinish V, Assistant Professor-Senior Scale, were greeted enthusiastically.

The dual degree program represents a significant opportunity for India and Canada to enhance their healthcare systems through preceptorship pathways. Each cohort at MAHE consists of 25 students, with the program's first cohort accepted in 2022. A third cohort, also comprising 25 students, is set to begin in August 2024.

Graduates of this dual degree program are qualified to work in both India and Canada, and Indian students are eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), expediting their accreditation process in Canada. During the two-week preceptorship, students will gain practical training and observation experience by working alongside nurses at Horizon Health Network and Shannex Incorporated care facilities. This immersive experience allows them to understand the nuances of Canadian healthcare while sharing insights from the Indian healthcare system.

UNB President and Vice-Chancellor Dr. Paul Mazerolle highlighted the program’s international recognition and the strong partnership it has fostered between MAHE and UNB. He also noted a joint publication in the Canadian Journal of Nursing Leadership on the dual degree model.

Dr. Sharath K. Rao, Pro-Vice-Chancellor Health Sciences at MAHE, addressed the gathering via video link, emphasizing the need for cross-border collaboration to tackle healthcare challenges and the joint research opportunities arising from the partnership.

Siddhartha Nath, Consul General of India in Toronto, reassured the students of the consulate’s support and acknowledged New Brunswick’s welcoming attitude towards its growing Indian community. Minister of Post-Secondary Education, Training & Labour Greg Turner underscored the government’s commitment to recruiting and retaining nurses, praising the initiative for its potential to reduce employment barriers for immigrant nurses and offer immediate job opportunities to graduates.

During the ceremony, Dr. Linu George, along with Turner, Nath, and Dr. Mazerolle, presented the seven students with red lab coats bearing the UNB logo.

The event saw attendance from prominent figures, including Dr. Lorna Butler, Dean of UNB; Margaret Melanson, President and CEO of Horizon Health Network; Michel Rod, UNB Vice Provost Strategic Enrolment; Catherine MacPherson, COO of Shannex Incorporated; Kate Sheppard, Interim CEO of the Nurses Association of New Brunswick; Dr. Judith Angelitta Noronha, Professor and Dean at Manipal College of Nursing (via video link); Dr. Petra Hauf, UNB Provost and Vice President Academic; Eric Megarity, Councillor Ward 6, Fredericton; and Cheyenne Joseph, UNB Piluwitahasuwin and Associate Vice-President, Indigenous Engagemen.

Tata Motors Launches Fleet Verse, A Digital Marketplace For Its Entire Range Of Commercial Vehicles

Tata Motors, India’s largest commercial vehicles manufacturer, today announced the launch of Tata Motors Fleet Verse - a comprehensive and innovative digital marketplace for Tata Motors Commercial Vehicles. The platform offers features like new vehicle discovery, configuration, acquisition, financing, and is future-proofed to include a range of additional services and features, making Fleet Verse a one-stop digital destination for all commercial vehicle needs.

Built on five key pillars, Fleet Verse is designed to consolidate all aspects of commercial vehicle ownership onto a single platform. The Smart Search Vehicle Discovery, enriched with advanced semantic search features allows users to explore Tata Motors’ full range of commercial vehicles of 900+ models and 3000+ variants. With Product Configurator, users can key in their business needs, application, and choices to get the most appropriate vehicle recommendation. The 3D Visualizer offers an immersive experience to view vehicle exteriors and interiors in realistic detail. With Vehicle Online Finance, Fleet Verse partners with major financiers to offer fast and smooth finance applications and approvals. Finally, the Vehicle Online Booking feature enables users to book their desired vehicles in a few easy clicks and get prioritized fulfillment, simplifying the acquisition process.

Launching the Fleet Verse platform, Mr. Bharat Bhushan, Head – Digital Business, Tata Motors Commercial Vehicles, said, With the launch of Fleet Verse, we are setting a new benchmark in the commercial vehicle industry by providing  customers with an all-encompassing digital platform. We aim to streamline the commercial vehicle ownership experience, ensuring it's fast, intelligent, safe, and reliable. This initiative underscores our commitment to innovation and enriched customer excellence, driving growth and convenience for both dealers and customers through digitalized value chains. We are excited to bring this transformative experience to our customers and look forward to continuously enhance the platform with new features and capabilities.”

All transactions on Fleet Verse are rendered through Tata Motors’ extensive pan-India dealership network, using a direct-to-dealer payment ecosystem. Serving as a digital bridge, the platform connects dealerships and financiers directly with customers, streamlining processes from enquiry to vehicle delivery. This enables a transparent, prompt and convenient procurement process for customers and Tata Authorised Dealerships —a true win-win scenario.

About Tata Motors

Part of the USD 150 billion Tata group, Tata Motors Limited (BSE: 500570 and 570001; NSE: TATAMOTORS and TATAMTRDVR), a USD 44 billion organization, is a leading global automobile manufacturer of cars, utility vehicles, pick-ups,  trucks, and buses, offering an extensive range of integrated, smart, and e-mobility solutions. With ‘Connecting Aspirations’ at the core of its brand promise, Tata Motors is India’s market leader in commercial vehicles and ranks among the top three in the passenger vehicles market.

Tata Motors strives to bring new products that captivate the imagination of GenNext customers, fuelled by state-of-the-art design and R&D centres located in India, the UK, the US, Italy, and South Korea. By focusing on engineering and tech- enabled automotive solutions catering to the future of mobility, the company’s innovation efforts are focused on developing pioneering technologies that are both sustainable and suited to the evolving market and customer aspirations. The company is pioneering India's Electric Vehicle (EV) transition and driving the shift towards sustainable mobility solutions by developing a tailored product strategy, leveraging the synergy between Group companies and playing an active role in liaising with the Government of India in developing the policy framework.

With operations in India, UK, South Korea, Thailand and Indonesia, Tata Motors markets its vehicles in Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, Southeast Asia, and the SAARC countries. As of March 31, 2024, Tata Motors’ operations include 90 consolidated subsidiaries, two joint operations, five joint ventures, and numerous equity-accounted associates, including their subsidiaries, over which the company exercises significant influence.

Robotic Urology Forum Conducts National Conference And Masterclass On Robotic Surgery In Bengaluru

·         The three – day conference had 210 attendees, including surgeons, post graduates, and researchers from across the country

Robotic Urology Forum, a national organization of surgeons practicing the art of robotic urological surgeries, collaborated with Karnataka Urology Association, Bangalore Urology Society, leading medical institutions and technology leaders in robotic – assisted surgery to conduct the 6th Robotic Urology Forum Conference and Masterclass in Bengaluru. The conference was aimed to bring together leading experts, surgeons, and healthcare professionals specializing in the field of urology and robotic-assisted surgery. The three-day conference featured sessions showcasing live operative surgeries focused on urological procedures including partial nephrectomy, renal transplantation, and prostate cancer surgery.

The conference was organised under the leadership of Dr. Raghunath S.K, Organising Secretary, Dr.  Kinju Adhikari and Dr. Ravi Taori, Joint Organising Secretaries. Dr Mahesh Desai, Head of Robotic Surgery & Medical Director at Muljibhai Patel Urological Hospital, and Dr N P Gupta, former head of urology department at All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi, were the chief guests at the event. The sessions at the conference were attended by top urologists, surgeons, and researchers exploring cutting-edge robotic urological surgery techniques.

Commenting on the successful conclusion of the conference, Dr.  Raghunath S.K, Organising Secretary of RUFCON said, “This year marked the 6th consecutive year, where urologists and surgeons across India gathered to network, share insights, and delve into emerging technologies in robotic – assisted surgery. This year, we received 210 registrations, with attendees ranging from surgeons and researchers to postgraduates. We also demonstrated 15 live robotic surgeries over three days using different robotic surgical systems like da Vinci. Besides live robotic-assisted urologic procedures, there were informative sessions on Robotic Renal Transplantation, Robotic Partial Nephrectomy in complex cases, Retroperitoneal RPLND, Robotic Uretero Calicostomy etc. These sessions were led by experienced urologic surgeons from different hospitals. The conference was a huge success and all this wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our partners.”

Emphasising on the need to train more surgeons in robotic – assisted surgery, Dr. Kinju Adhikari, Joint Organising Secretary of RUFCON said, “India has been witnessing a significant rise in the incidence of urological cancers like kidney cancer and prostate cancer. A lot of patient cases which were considered impossible to operate are now possible with advanced technologies like robotic- assisted surgery. Therefore, it is paramount that surgeons gain expertise in performing surgeries using such technologies. On the first day of the conference, Dr. Ravi Taori, Consultant Uro- Oncologist and Robotic Surgeon, HCG Hospital Bengaluru conducted a very detailed session on how to perform partial nephrectomy in complex patient cases. Sessions like these will inspire budding surgeons to learn the techniques used to perform complex surgeries and thereby enhance the adoption of RAS in India.”

Highlighting the need to organise more such conferences, Dr. Ravi Taori, Joint Organising Secretary of RUFCON said, “RUFCON served as a platform for fellow surgeons from across different hospitals in India to come together and discuss the advancements in the field of urology. These conferences become platforms, where surgeons can network, discuss their achievements, share insights into unique patient cases they have treated, and exchange knowledge about the latest surgical techniques they have explored and learnt. As more surgeons become familiar with advanced surgical technologies like robotic-assisted surgery, conferences like this has the potential to drive increased adoption of robotic-assisted surgery within India's healthcare system, ultimately leading to enhanced patient outcomes.”

By bringing together healthcare professionals, technology leaders, and passionate surgeons, RUFCON played a significant role in promoting the growth of robotic surgery in India and contributing to better patient care. With live operative international minimally invasive surgery workshops showcasing cutting-edge procedures performed with state-of-the-art robotic systems, the conference offered an invaluable opportunity for the attendees to learn from the experts in the medical industry.

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