Trakin


I did professional blogging for Trakin – Pune’s top most technology and business blog from September 2010 – April 2011. Here are excerpts from my posts:-

CEO’s on lease – Latest trend among India Inc?
CEOs are very integral to any organization, infact the buck stops at them! Whether it is steering their company through a very difficult phase or growing it organically / inorganically, they are at the forefront of decisions which affect an organization in various ways. On the other hand when the organization is in the dumps, the CEO is the first to get the blame for all that is wrong. Vikram Pandit had to reduce his salary to $1 when Citibank was in total distress. Eric Schmidt was taken on board as the CEO when the Google founders realised that the need professional hands.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/31/ceo-lease-india-inc-trend/

Products Made-for-India: The new Trend !
Mobile companies from Nokia to LG have designed India centric phones with features such as very good battery life, torch facility, protection from scratches and dust etc. The number of mobile subscribers has risen to more than 730 million giving birth to new Indian companies such as Micromax and Karbonn which have phones with unique features like a mosquito repellent among others.

Delhi recently got its own first Laundromat which is a very common system in the west. Automobile manufacturers from Nissan to GM to Tata to BMW are all searching for that right vehicle to manufacture for their Indian consumers.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/27/made-india-products-new-trend/

User Generated Content – To believe or not to…
In the last couple of years, social media has been discussed through and through in India. From celebrities taking to social media like fish to water to brands trying to use it to improve their customer services, social media has gripped all alike. Then there are people like Gursimran Kaur who have tweeted through her delivery which was more for the need of telling her twitter mates rather than a publicity stunt.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/26/user-generated-content-ugc/

Silicon Valley to Bangalore – Reverse brain drain in start-ups this time?
Recently I was reading an article regarding individuals who went to study in US years ago finally returning to India to transform the startup ecosystem in this country. I couldn’t help but smile and wonder at the number of such articles I have read in recent years. People have spoken about reverse brain drain, some have spoken about the labour and cost arbitrage in India and that’s why you see everything outsourced from their shores to ours while many others have just spoken about giving back to their motherland.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/24/reverse-brain-drain-startups-india/

Right to Education! For many its just that, a RIGHT!
Everyone talks about the Right to Education Act these days. It seems to have become the most important policy decision for our government. Obviously it doesn’t have the power to overthrow a government like say talking about terrorism, reservation for specific sectors of the society etc. But in a period where everyone from the common man to NGOs is putting deep pressure on the government, they obviously can’t let this issue be at the backburner.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/21/india-education-right-survey/

Mahindra planning to RISE! But where to?
Spanning more than 7 different sectors and a lot many more companies, Mahindra Group is one of the largest conglomerates in the country today. With the acquisition of Ssang Yong, it has given itself the headroom to expand itself internationally. So obviously having a specific positioning and branding campaign for the international segment makes a lot of sense, doesn’t it?

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/20/mahindra-rise-ad-campaign/

Indian Retailers offering Loyalty Programmes to woo consumers!
The Indian retail industry is expected to grow to around US$ 800 billion by 2015 with more than 20% being contributed by the organized retail formats. Despite poor infrastructure, lack of cold chains – a necessity for food retail, availability of trained manpower and many other difficulties, India has been regarded as one of the top most destinations to watch out for as far as the retail sector is concerned.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/18/indian-retailers-loyalty-programmes/

Finally Starbucks all set to enter India!
Starbucks, the most famous coffee chain in the world is finally all set to enter the world’s second fastest growing country. After trying for the past 3 years and having issues with India’s rules on FDI cap for foreign retail chains, the Seattle based coffee conglomerate is entering India in a JV with Tata Coffee. This should come as an amazing piece of news for coffee connoisseurs across the nation.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/17/starbucks-in-india-entry/

Indians have better financial management skills! Is it so?
An extensive recent survey of 10 countries – Consumer Resourcefulness Study – by ING Group has showed that Indians have a very sound financial literacy level of 55% which was only second to Japan. Most of the Indians seem to have managed their entire household budgets in a better manner as compared to their counterparts in countries like USA, Mexico, Netherlands, Romania, Belgium etc.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/15/financial-literacy-indians/

Globaly Cleantech Investments hit a high in 2010!
The world is moving towards global warming. Everyone using energy sources extravagantly as if it’s their birthright. The developed countries that are the West are the biggest energy guzzlers. But they are always behind India and China to reduce their energy consumption because of their ballooning population.

But 2010 was the second highest year after 2008 (US$ 8.8 billion) in terms of the number of investments and the financial value of these deals. It was higher than 2009 where the value was about US$ 6.1 billion. There were 715 deals totalling around US $ 7.8 billion. The venture investment in Q4 (US$ 1.61 billion) decreased by 17% compared to Q3 (US$ 1.95 billion). The excellent financial activity and increasing number of deals has also resulted in 93 companies releasing their IPO raising more than US $16 billion.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/11/cleantech-investments-2010/

Indian app developers making hay while sun is shining!
Smartphones are growing in numbers across the world as well as in India too. As pointed out in one of my earlier blog posts, 10 million phones out of the 155 million sold last year were smartphones which in itself was a huge increase from the previous year. The numbers are expected to further increase with the launch of Dell Streak, Samsung tablet, Playbook, Notion Ink Adam and host of other tablets. But what decides the success of a smartphone? It basically the applications it has on the device!

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/10/indian-mobile-app-developers/

Someone isn’t crying because of the rising vegetable prices!
Onion prices had risen to a high of more than Rs 100/kg in December bringing tears to the entire country. This coupled with tomato selling at Rs 40/kg and garlic at Rs 300/kg, the entire country seemed in a desperate situation. The ban on exports and import of onion from Pakistan has now threatened to put breaks on skyrocketing prices on onions !

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/07/rising-vegetable-onion-prices/

Bihar gets more Tourist arrivals than Goa!!!!
Don’t get shocked with that headline…that’s the face!

Kidnapping, Murders, Rapes, Robberies – A day didn’t go by when one of these things didn’t happen during Lalu’s regime in Bihar. He and his family members held onto their seats in the assembly like the necessity with which a person stays in water. They didn’t care about the welfare, protection and safety of people. It was all about power and status. But you may ask on where in India it hasn’t been this way? Yes everywhere it is like this. But in Bihar it was just beyond anyone’s imagination. Everyone had lost trust in the Bihar system whether it is outside India or even us Indians.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/06/bihar-economic-growth-tourist-arrivals/

Social Entrepreneurship in Technology – Finally the IT sector joins the bandwagon
Social Entrepreneurship isn’t a new word for India at all. From NGOs to companies engaging in activities to support the nearby communities, social entrepreneurship has for long been around. For NGOs it is regarded as their utmost duty to work for the society. But for the Indian business houses, it has become part of the corporate social responsibility lexicon.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/05/social-entrepreneurship-india-technology/

Move over outsourcing! Indians are creating jobs for Americans!!
America has for long been critical of Indians taking up jobs meant to be theirs. So much so that Obama has always criticised companies who first offer jobs to Indians and then their own citizens. He has introduced measures like higher taxes for companies who have branches in India and also brought down incentives for such organizations. All this while he has harped on the fact that American youngsters should work together to overcome their Indian and Chinese counterparts. But protests against this came to fore when the anti–outsourcing bill sent by Obama was not passed in the House.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/04/outsourcing-creating-jobs-american/

Navratna universities? Will this idea benefit education?
You have heard of the Ivy League, haven’t you? These 8 institutions are some of the the most prestigious in the world. They are prestigious because of the difficulties in getting admission, the quality of their students, the curriculum, the highly qualified teaching staff and so much more. It is a taken that a student studying in any one of them has his future in right hands.

But now our ever reform introducing education minister Kapil Sibal has come up with the idea of India’s Navratna universities based on the Ivy League concept. Like we have the Navratnas in the PSU sector, he plans to introduce such a concept in education as well.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/04/navratna-universities-india-education/

Number of Mobile Handset players in India balloons to 68 !
How many times till a couple of years back when you used to go to any mobile store and say “Bhaiya naya mobile dekhana”, were you shown Nokia? As one article puts it, Nokia ruled the mobile handset market till a couple of years back like the colossus. With over 70% market share, no one had the guts to do anything to it. It had become somewhat of generic name for mobile handsets much to the dismay of other brands.

But then the slide happened and it’s happening fast. In a recent study by the IDC on the number of handsets sold during Q3 of 2010, Nokia is still the leader but has lost a further 5% market share from Q2 to be at 31.5%. Its 36% market share in Q2 was itself a 20% drop compared to the same quarter last year. The problems with Nokia are its inability to develop a good smartphone or ones which have dual or trip SIMs and other such unique facilities.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/31/indian-mobile-handset-market-growth/

The downside of India’s Economic growth
India has emerged as the 2nd fast growing economy after China and has been at the forefront of emerging out of the recession at breakneck speed. The growth rate has jumped from 6.5 percent in 2009 to close to 9 percent this year. I just spoke yesterday about how Pay Packages are growing, the number of jobs available in the market is growing, FII is increasing like never before and even companies are hiring in hordes – The economy is in the log phase of growth. This is all great, but  too much growth also has its own downside.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/30/economic-growth-downside-skilled-workforce/

Placements, Jobs, salary hikes, recruitments–All back with a bang!
The way India’s economy is going currently I am sure the 2009 pass outs of Engineering as well as MBA colleges would be cursing their stars. They had to suffer from low pay packages, not being recruited by many of the big names and neither having a chance of getting their desired profiles. But this year the story seems to be entirely different. The recruitment numbers across the board seem much more than one could have imagined. So much so that in a recent survey by consultancy firm Manpower places India among the top 3 countries with the best employment scenario in 2011.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/29/india-placements-jobs-salary-hikes-recruitments-growth/

Top 10 social media events in India in 2010
Social Media has gripped the world’s largest democracy like never before. Celebrities, normal people and now even brands are moving onto web 2.0 and social media like as if it’s the next best thing. PR, marketing their products, ecommerce or just plain talking about things ranging from girlfriends to talking about enjoyment with friends – people are using social media for everything.

But then from paedophiles to terrorists to people getting killed / kidnapped because of this medium, the ills of social media are also coming to the fore.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/28/top-10-social-media-events-india/

Top 10 disasters of the year in India!
2010 has had its own share of disasters. Despite the fact that we have advanced so much in preventing and predicting disasters, it is something we haven’t been able to stop happening. From political to technical to even natural disasters, there was a lot which brought a lot of misery to people.

There were also certain disasters which benefited a lot of people, like Reliance’s failed acquisition of LyondellBasell much to the delight of its competitors :)

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/27/top-10-disasters-india-2010/

Top 10 events in the Indian telecom industry in 2010!
The Indian telecom industry has seen monumental growth this year. The scale and speed has been like never before. From getting more customers, increasing their revenues, addition of newer players, moving on to 3G – there has been a lot of interesting stuff happening on that front.

Can you imagine, the total subscriber additions in 2010 are expected to be about 200 million. Most of the countries across the world don’t even have total subscriber base equivalent to that number.

But then obviously if a lot of nice stuff has been happening around, then a lot of infamous stuff needs to happen as well, right? So A. Raja and the 2G scam issue were there to make sure that one didn’t miss out on that too much.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/25/top-10-telecom-events-2010/

Top 10 Indian Mergers & Acquisitions of the 2010!
India Inc. is back making multibillion dollar deals like never before. The total deal value this year has surpassed 2007 which was the big ticket year for mergers and acquisitions. The recession and economic slowdown had caused a lot of heartburn, disappointment and distress among the corporate honchos in the country. But with deals crossing US $55 billion this year, the smiles are back on the faces of the big guns.

Along with hunting for organizations at bargains, the deals also involve going for loss making companies in developed countries to turn them around. Value buys became the order of the day. Though a number of acquisitions were in the developed world like Singapore, Australia, Europe etc, many of them happened in the developing world as well.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/24/top-10-ma-mergers-acquistions-2010/

Puma India’s unique communication strategy – Crazy or Desirable?
Puma is one of the biggest international shoe brands in the world in the leagues of Nike, Reebok and Adidas. Puma India was set up in 2005 and this was an advantage for it as the German brand became one of the first international shoe brands in the country. But then in the last 5 years, how many times have you seen a Puma commercial or huge billboard advertisement or heard a jingle? I am sure you can count on your fingers. But that would surely not be the case with say a Reebok or a Nike!

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/22/puma-india-communication-strategy/

The real reason behind Hero Honda Breakup..
The breakup of Hero Honda after a marriage spanning 25 years sent shockwaves across the entire Indian auto industry. Hero Honda had brought the concept of a two–wheeler in India’s collective consciousness. It is also regarded as the largest manufacturer of two–wheelers in the world. Then why the breakup of such a uber successful marriage ? The reason cited includes disagreement over various issues and deals.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/21/real-reason-hero-honda-split/

2010 – Year of Indian Auto sector growth!
Booming is a small word for the Indian auto sector today. The pace at which it is growing, it seems that it would soon surpass the IT / ITes sector as the most prominent sector of our economy. The Indian auto sector has grown by leaps and bounds over the past decade. But with new product launches, entering of newer players like Kia Motors, Ssang Yong and also strengthening of players like Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes etc, 2010 has turned out to be a coming of age year for the Indian automotive industry.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/21/indian-auto-sector-growth-2010/

Top 10 News-Makers of 2010!
2011 is right around the corner – all of us become nostalgic about the entire year and what all we did. For some it’s the time to reflect on what good / bad or useful / wasteful work they did while for others it is the time to enjoy the New Year holidays.

And for me it was about penning down the 10 most important news items / happenings in India. Mind you, this is my list of 10 most important Newsmakers and probably readers may differ from it.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/20/top-10-newsmakers-2010-review/

After Hero’s Honda divorce, it starts work on its Brand Identity!
Hero Honda has been the largest manufacturer of two–wheelers since a decade. With a market share of 60% in motorcycles and 43% in two – wheelers, Hero Honda has been the leader by far. But then as they say everything isn’t always hunky – dory, Honda recently sold off its stake of 26% in the Hero Group because of problems which have not really come out in open. So, basically their 25 year old successful association has culminated in a sad divorce.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/18/hero-honda-divorce-brand-identity/

Kia Motors – Another international auto player plans India Entry!
General Motors, Ford, Hyundai, Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes and now KIA – International auto players seem to be marching into India at the snap of one’s fingers. And no this is not just Asian players alone. If you go back to my list, it includes American and German auto companies as well. As incomes rise, aspirations rise, as aspirations rise, the demand for luxury rises and as the demand for luxury rises, companies providing such luxury rises.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/13/kia-motors-automobile-india-launch/

Browsers vs apps! Who will win the battle?
The number of mobile subscribers in the country has reached 723 million as of last month. Over the next couple of years, the penetration of mobile services across the nation particularly in the rural areas is expected to increase manifold. With poor fixed line connectivity across the country, a lot more people are expected to go online through the mobile devices. This is also helped by the fact that the technology is continuously changing with the coming of smart phones and other such kind of devices.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/09/mobile-browser-apps-battle-win/

Nano’s image going up in flames! What now?
The 1 lakh car!

The most revolutionary vehicle in the history of the world!

The cheapest vehicle made on this planet!

A vehicle which could move India into the top of the ranks of auto manufacturing hubs in the world!

While talking about “Tata Nano”, all of us sometime or the other must have said the above statements to our friends and families. But two years after Ratan Tata’s first announcement of his dream to see every India owning a car, Nano has brought more harm to their image rather than anything else.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/04/tata-nano-sales-stumble/

Facebook recruiting IITians via Skype – Bumper placements back again…
Another round of placements has begun at engineering colleges across the country. Another opportunity for the likes of TCS, Wipro, Infosys and other Indian technology majors to hire in droves. Another instance when more than 60%-70% of the batch despite having no idea of computers will move to the IT sector. You must be thinking all this and more right? But then some things don’t remain the same always.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/03/facebook-hiring-skype-iit-madras-placements/

Pune’s DRDO creates most powerful explosive in the World–60 times more powerful than RDX!
With out-dated weapons and equipment to fight, our armed forces are meant to protect our borders. How amazing right? Despite the fact that they don’t have the basic weapons required let alone having the futuristic ones, they have always done a fantastic job of protecting us. Be it 26/11, the numerous bomb blasts, the incursions by Pakistan and China, the wars with Pakistan, our politicians have always said the same line.

We will do all it takes to get the best weapons for the armed forces” All this dies down until the next attack.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/12/01/pune-drdo-creates-worlds-most-powerful-explosive/

Jet Airways, Jet Konnect, Jet Lite – Is there really any difference?
Jet Airways has been running in losses for quite some time now. And those losses are not running in few crores but instead in thousands of crores. These problems started from the 9/11 attacks in 2001 and have continued till today. SARS, Recession, Fuel prices, Terrorism, Human Capital, Strikes – You name the issue and it’s affected the airline industry. And Jet hasn’t escaped it. But then it has had many problems of its own as well.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/30/jet-airways-jet-konnect-jet-lite-branding/

Anti-Corruption Helpline by IIM students–Need of the hour!
2G scam, Commonwealth Games Scandal, Adarsh Housing Society Scam, Corporate Loan Bribery scandal – Are you tired like me of hearing about scandals day in and day out? Are you in the same boat like me having lost trust in the system? Are you thinking that everything would be forgotten in a few days / weeks like the Madhu Koda scam? [Read our Top 10 corruption scams of all time]

Here’s an interesting piece of news which has re–instilled a bit of my faith in the system. Six students (Ravi Yadav, Udit Goyal, Saurabh Singh, Nikhil Bhaskar, Shantanu Sekhar of IIM Ahmedabad and Daniel De Luna, an exchange student from Italy) have decided to come forward and start an anti corruption helpline.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/29/anti-corruption-helpline-iim-students/

Chennai – Fast becoming India’s Auto Manufacturing Hub!
What comes to your mind when you think of Chennai? Idli, Vada, Sambhar, Dosa, Lungis, women having flowers in their hair?  Also, over past decade, Chennai has grown to become one of the hottest educational cities in the country with more than 500 colleges of different shapes, sizes and courses. But there is another thing Chennai will soon be known for – Its Automobile and Manufacturing prowess!

Over the last couple of years Chennai has truly developed into a world class industrial and manufacturing hub with organizations across IT, Automotive, Telecom, Retail springing up everywhere. The Chennai – Bangalore corridor is in line to be the biggest industrial corridor in the next few years.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/27/chennai-auto-manufacturing-hub/

Mahindra acquires SsangYong! A step to creating an international presence?
With more than 12 different verticals from real estate to retail to defence, Mahindra has been there done that in almost every field. But at its core even today lies the automotive sector. By core I don’t really mean their success is defined only by this sector. But instead it’s seen one of their ‘best’ R & D spending over the years in developing new models. Mahindra was founded on the premise of building utility vehicles.

And today, Mahindra seems to have taken one of their biggest steps in building themselves as a global brand. They have acquired a 70% controlling stake in SsangYong, the South Korean auto maker for US $ 463 million.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/24/mahindra-ssangyong-acquisition/

DGCA comes out with airfare regulations..but do players really bother?
35,000…. 20,000…. 15,000…. 12,000!

Wondering why am I giving out random numbers here? These numbers could be the size of my bank balance, my spending amount for a few months or also my earnings. But interestingly it’s none of those. So what is it? This is the cost of travel nowadays from Mumbai to Delhi (1122 km) on flights ranging from Air India, Jet Airways, Kingfisher to LCCs like Spice Jet, Indigo, Go Air etc. I am sure you have heard a lot of hullaballoo over it already!

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/23/dgca-airfare-regulations/

Ambassador gets an overhaul – does it really matter now?
There is such a magnanimous legacy attached to the Ambassador in our country isn’t it? It was launched in India in 1958 by Hindustan Motor Limited and has been in production since with very few changes here and there. It is based on the Morris Oxford III model made by the Morris Motor Company in Oxford.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/21/ambassador-car-overhaul-india/

wow! Google targeting Indian SME’s !
Search, Email, News – Google has done everything. It has become the world leader in search and doesn’t have anything much to prove in this domain to anyone. But then as pointed out in earlier posts, you can always count on Google to keep coming up with something new all the time. Their services such as Google News, Gmail etc. have already taken the world by storm.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/18/google-engage-india-sme/

Airtel’s New Logo & Signature tune–Better or Worse?
How much importance does a logo or signature tune have for a brand? And that too for a brand that has established itself in the field of telecom, which is one of utmost competition with operators making a beeline for supremacy. Airtel which has established itself as one of the world leaders in mobile telephony has finally started showing the results of its Rs 300 cr spend for marketing, advertising and branding. The first to change are the logo and the signature tunes.

Airtel’s previous logo had both white and red colours interchangeably. The interesting part was that the word ‘Air’ was written in black with a white background while ‘Tel’ was written in white on a red background. Sometimes they also included their slogan “Express Yourself” with the logo.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/18/airtel-new-logo-tune-rebranding/

Mahindra Satyam still in the dumps – Raju’s ghost lives on!
It’s almost been more than a year since the confession of Ramalinga Raju, the now disgraced founder of Satyam Computer Services of his involvement in the biggest ever fraud to hit corporate India. A lot has changed since then. Tech Mahindra acquired Satyam and did manage to save it from completely falling off the radar though after a lot of problems. But then some things remain the same. Mr Raju is chilling and enjoying himself roaming in and out of the Chanchalguda Jail when he wants to… with the best of facilities on offer. Resort anyone?

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/17/mahindra-satyam-still-in-dumps/

Facebook’s Project Titan – Gmail killer or just some hype?
Facebook seems to be giving Google one blow after another. Just when you thought Google had the upper hand by banning Gmail users from importing their contacts on Facebook, Facebook comes up with a killer idea. It is planning on revamping its messaging system. Yes the same messaging system, which a few changes here and there aside has been mostly static since its inception.

Dubbed ‘Project Titan’, Facebook is coming up with a full scale webmail client like Yahoo Mail, Hotmail and Gmail for that matter. But then it has already crossed many landmarks such as being the top most social networking website in the world with over 500 million users and being the most visited website on the net. If it were a country today, it would be in the top 5 on the list in terms of population.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/15/facebook-mail-project-titan-gmail-killer/

iSlate – Another tablet for the masses?
If Nano turned the dream of owning an automobile across segments into a reality, the iSlate tablet PC powered by solar energy could do the same for the laptop segment.

Move over the Rs 1,600 laptop which was developed jointly by IISc, IITs and VIT. The iSlate – a solar powered tablet for the masses across India is the latest thing on the horizon. After the 1,600 laptop, it suddenly seems that the masses are the next big target market for tablet PCs.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/15/islate-tablet-low-cost-computing/

A Mobile Phone cheaper than a cup of coffee.. And that too in UK!
Twenty years ago, mobile phones were as humungous as a brick. You could literally injure someone if you hit him / her with that device. They were also very expensive. In places like India, calling from one city to another would sometimes cost more than Rs 20-25 / minute. But today mobile phones seem to be cheaper than a cup of coffee.

But then, where do you find mobile phone at throwaway prices? Any guesses? China? India? NO!

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/11/cheapest-mobile-phone-in-uk/

ROCKMELT – Browser specially designed for social media Freaks!
Ok so enough and more has been spoken about social media in general. So much so that you must be wondering, what are we going to see next? But then in the world of technology, nothing has a very long shelf life. INNOVATION is the word which all the technology freaks live by and that’s what is the name of the game in a changing field.

The technological world was abuzz with the news of the launch of the Facebook browser – Rockmelt. And after months of speculation, rumours and what not, it’s finally here.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/09/rockmelt-social-media-web-browser/

Multiple brand ambassadors for one product! A sign of the times?
Brand ambassadors are commonly used by companies across the world to personify their brands. Be it Shahrukh Khan for Santro Zip, Sachin for Boost or Hrithik for John Players, brand ambassadors are a way people easily associate themselves with a brand.

Other than building awareness, it is a way brands use to build an emotional bond with their target and potential customers. The most important criteria which is considered in bringing a brand ambassador on board is whether he / she is the right fit for the product or not.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/09/multiple-brand-ambassadors-products-trends/

Sensex over 21k..So what next?
So what is Diwali known for?

The victory of good over evil, Lord Rama’s victory over Ravana and his return to Ayodhya after a gap of 14 years.

But then is this the only thing people would remember this Diwali? NO!

It will be known as the first day since Jan 2008 when the Sensex crossed the 21,000 mark again. During the confident session of trading in the Mahurat session, the Sensex crossed 21k to finally close at 21,012. The Nifty gained 33 points to reach 6314 points. It is just 44 points short of its all time record of 6358.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/08/sensex-crosses-21k-indian-stock-market-growth/

Harley Davidson prices to get cheaper – sets up a local manufacturing unit!
All you Harley Davidson fans who have been distressed and disappointed over its sky high prices, here is a reason to cheer. Harley Davidson is planning on setting up a 70,000 sq. feet assembly plant in the first half of 2011 for select models in Bawal, Haryana. This has been in pipeline for more than a year now.

Harley models start at Rs 6 lacs and go on till Rs 34-35. This high cost is in part due to the 60% import duty on completely built units (CBU). But since it is only 10% on completely knocked down units (CKU), the sky high prices are expected to come down considerably.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/06/harley-davidson-motorcycle-prices-cheaper/

Maruti Kizashi – Venturing into Luxury D Segment!
Maruti Suzuki, India’s largest auto maker in terms of sales as well as the number of vehicles has been India’s most loved vehicle since time immemorial. Swift, Alto, Zen, Maruti 800, A-Star – all its models have been success stories in their own right. But then Maruti has always been known for value for money in all its vehicles. And has therefore stuck to mostly serving the A and B segments.

But then all this is set to change with the launch of the upcoming Maruti Kizashi in December this year. Kizashi is Maruti’s first attempt at entering the D segment. It first came to India as a prototype during the Delhi Auto Expo. And now it looks set for a Dec – Jan launch in the country.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/11/04/maruti-kizashi-launch-luxury-d-segment/

Kingfisher is the BEST? Think again!
Kingfisher is recognized as the most luxurious airline in the country. It’s also the only airline to be given a 5 star rating by Skytrax (The official world online aircraft star rating program). With Mr Vijay Mallya at the helm, one can surely expect the ultimate experience in travelling be it domestically or internationally. When Kingfisher bought Air Deccan (now Kingfisher Red), it changed the face of it from a low cost airline to a big budget low cost airline. I have personally travelled by Kingfisher Red twice and have been served really well.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/31/kingfisher-customer-support-bad/

Venky’s hatch Blackburn Rovers Deal!
It is not the Ambanis who are set to join a Middle Eastern prince, the Russian oil oligarch Roman Abramovich and others  as proud owners of EPL teams. But instead a relatively smaller & unknown group – Venkys (formerly Western Hatcheries Private Limited) is set to buy the Blackburn Rovers – currently ranked 17th in the EPL table for a sum of £46 million.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/28/venkys-venkateshwara-hatcheries-blackburn-rovers-deal/

Horlicks new look, logo and packaging – Strategy Shift?

Horlicks has for years been the most famous health food drink across India. How many of you remember your Mom saying “Son if you want to become healthy, you should Horlicks daily?” It had always positioned itself as the one stop health beverage. But over a period of time it has diversified into biscuits, nutribars and instant noodles with varying degrees of success.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/23/horlicks-look-logo-packaging/

Toyota pins hope on low cost Etios to capture Indian Car Market Share!

Toyota Motor Corp is one of the most innovative and famous car models around the world. Though in many countries their cars sell like hot cakes where most are able to afford it, in India they have still been confined to the high end segment.

With models like Fortuner, Corolla, Camry, Innova, Lexus and Cruiser, Toyota has always been regarded somewhat of an elite car in the country. At a price tag of around 10 Lakh, Innova is its cheapest offering till date.

But now with Etios, Toyota is trying to gain an entry into the highly competitive low cost market. Priced at about Rs 4 lakhs and in the range of the market leader Maruti Swift, Etios expects to make Toyota very competitive in this segment.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/21/tata-etios-maruti/

Indiabulls Retail – Yet another retail player bites dust?

Retail Sector in India was being hailed as Sunshine sector just a couple of years back – Many Indian players entered it to grab potentially huge retail Indian consumer market and grew very aggressively. But it seems that sun is not shining on them anymore – the calculations seem to have gone wrong!

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/21/indiabulls-retail-store/

Micromax Buzzing–From upcoming IPO to producing the world’s lightest touch phone!

Micromax Informatics is India’s biggest mobile handset seller. Started less than 3 years ago, Micromax has garnered a 4.1% market share (by revenue) and a revenue of Rs 1,600 cr last year in the US $ 6.7 billion Indian handset market. Today it is selling more than 1 million phones per month and heads a group of domestic companies like Karbonn, Spice, Zen, Videocon, Lava etc.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/21/micromax-ipo-modu-lightest-touchphone-mobile/

Social Media replacing cold calling in sales?

Social media as a topic has been beaten to death over a period of time. Here on trak.in as well, many of our earlier posts deal with this topic. But recently I came across an article – “The impact of social media on cold calling”.

It made my mind think and analyse about social media on a different level altogether.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/16/social-media-replacing-sales-cold-calling/

Driverless cars, Wind Energy, Inflation Price Index – Google is more than being online…

Google’s search engine, Google online news, Gmail, Google docs, Chrome operating system – What’s common among all this? All our applications which can be used on the Internet; basically speaking on the computer. So you can’t be blamed for thinking that Google is all computers.

This post is an eye – opener for those people as well as me who don’t know the other face of Google. A face which is not totally hidden from the world but one due to which they are regarded as one of the most innovative companies on this earth.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/13/google-driverless-cars-wind-energy-inflation-price-index/

Tata Aria–One of the most feature-packed crossover SUV launched!

Tata Motors has been losing market share over time in the utility vehicle segment. Its Safari and Sumo have lost more than 8% market share to end at 13% in 2009-10 from 21% in 2006 – 07. Their loss has been the gain for models like Xylo, Bolero, Scorpio, Innova etc. This led the panic buttons ringing throughout the top management of Tata Motors. And the result?

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/12/tata-aria/

Mahindra aiming to create a flutter in every two–wheeler segment! Can they do it?

Mahindra is one of India’s most diversified business houses with interests ranging from the automotive industry to the luxury yacht sector. But despite this, even today the first mention of M & M’s name brings the vision of them as an automotive market leader. With vehicles ranging from Logan to Bolero to Mahindra Tractors, they seem to have occupied every segment, which now includes even Two Wheelers !

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/09/mahindra-two-wheelers-mojo-stallio/

Can Wal-Mart make a comeback in India?

Wal-Mart is one of the biggest retail players in the world. In the US it became famous over time for its “everyday low prices” (EDL) concept. Efficient supply chain management is at the core of its business. But when they expanded over time to countries like China and India, they realised the fact that it wasn’t easy to replicate this kind of success. Regulatory problems, supply chain issues, political considerations and what not has resulted in them being still somewhat of a miniscule player in these regions.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/08/walmart-bharti-comeback/

Indian Railways Advertisement during CWG…what do you think?

A lot has been said about the Indian Railways – be it good or bad. There have been problems galore – tragedies, accidents, ministerial issues, problems of poor stations, on-board food issues, poorly managed railway tracks across the nation and what not. But then, in the midst of all this, the railways built during the British era for their use (and not actually for ours – interestingly) has helped bind and link up the different parts of the country ala regional integration.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/07/indian-railways-advertisement-commercial-cwg/

India Retail Buzz: Koutons Retail, Future Group, Reliance Retail, Marks & Spencer…

Retail is one of the most developing sector in the country with new players and new malls joining the bandwagon daily. But then with ever new player joining in, one or many are also losing out. As the famous saying goes “Someone’s gain is someone else’s loss”.

Over the last week or so there have been many interesting and some not so interesting things happening in the Indian retail space…Here is the run down…

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/06/india-retail-koutons-future-group-reliance-marks-spencer/

Doordarshan Wins Gold Medal with Highest TVR in a decade for CWG Opening Ceremony!

Our national television, Doordarshan like everything government owned has always lagged behind the other popular private channels such as Star, Zee, Sony etc. Even though in terms of reach it has and will always be the best, the quality of its programs especially in recent times hasn’t provided reason enough for people to watch it. Today the people, especially in cities have access to a wide variety of cable TV channels. The only reason for them to watch Doordarshan is to watch something like the Republic Day, Independence Day, cricket matches etc. live.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/05/doordarshan-highest-tvr/

Facebook taking on Google on new fronts! Will they succeed?
Facebook is the world’s most popular social network with over 500 million users while Google wins the title of the most popular search engine on the web hands down. But both of them have moved beyond their core competencies into what one can call related diversification. Google which is known as one of the world’s most innovative companies has introduced variety of apps like Gmail, Google News and many others you already know of. Facebook on the other hand has constantly evolved the way people communicate by introducing Facebook Places, Facebook Stories, Facebook Ads and many more applications.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/05/facebook-growth-success-google/

Mercedes planning some big and interesting developments for India!

Mercedes is one of the world leaders in the luxury car market. It has a global market share of about 40%. In 2010 it has been able to achieve its highest return on sales of about 8.5%. In India, Mercedes along with Audi and BMW are among the top luxury car brands occupying more than 55% of this market.

And now Mercedes has introduced some more interesting plans to support its already existing operations in India. Earlier this year, they already introduced the global pre–owned car programme “Proven Exclusivity” for India. In its first phase, it has been pretty successful with sales of more than 400 units and there are plans of opening many more centres in the near future

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/03/mercedes-india-growth/

Indian Auto companies report record sales even as Customers switching choices!
The last signs of recession which seem to have cleared up in various sectors across the country are now showing signs of clearing in the automotive sector in the country as well. Many of the top car companies have registered record sales in the past one year. Those which form the bulk of the sales in the country have done amazingly well.

Some of the statistics give the true picture of what has really happened: -

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/10/02/indian-auto-sales-growth/

Anti-offshoring bill blocked in Senate – Obama’s anti outsourcing rhetoric stopped in its tracks?
Barack Obama has been critical of Indian outsourcing industry even before he came to the fold as the President. Be it in education or in the outsourcing industry he has always looked for opportunities to try to better Indians or go one up as the case may be. Nothing wrong with that – Except for the fact that outsourcing is something which even the US companies have encouraged over the years for a variety of reasons like low costs, better skills etc. which are already known.

And so in his intensifying movement against outsourcing, the Anti Offshoring Bill was brought into the picture.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/30/anti-offshoring-bill-blocked/

“Bombiles” creating terror – Just a hoax or Reality?
Bombiles = Bomb in Mobiles

The BL–5C battery episode with Nokia couple of years back had brought the fact of mobile explosion in the collective consciousness of the world. It had led people running helter-skelter to change their mobiles / batteries and also led to Nokia conducting a large scale recall of these batteries. This also caused a lot of damage to their reputation. But over a period of time many incidents of mobile phone explosions have been reported from various places.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/29/mobile-bomb-terror-hoax-reality/

Could outsourcing to India be at threat not from anyone else but US itself? And NO, it’s not from Obama this time…
For years India has been the leading outsourcing destination for companies from the US. A number of factors like cheaper labour, lower costs, rising productivity and also the language factor have fuelled a boom in this sector. The recent speeches by Obama against it and also Philippines rise an alternative destination for outsourcing have not caused much of an impact.

But now there’s something bigger happening in the US itself which could put India’s tag as an outsourcing destination in jeopardy.

A number of small IT companies like Saturn Systems, Rural Sourcing, Onshore Technology Services, Cayuse Technologies are among 20 such companies which have sprung up in remote parts of US.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/27/us-rural-outsourcing-threat-india/

Mumbai-Delhi boast most expensive streets in the world! Does that make any difference to us?
The world may have overcome the economic recession the world over. But its aftershocks still linger on. The recovery seems to be coming in the backdrop of fragile consumer confidence as well as poor availability of finance for businesses and consumers. Therefore the Cushman and Wakefield survey of the most expensive streets across the world shows that more rental areas recorded rental declines than growth.

This survey is useful in getting to know a few important facts –

* State of the economy in terms of recession, depression, growth etc.
* Growth / Decline of the retail industry
* Inflation, Rents and Costs

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/25/most-expensive-streets-world-india/

Rural and small towns, the next big opportunity for Indian retail?
India’s over 600,000 villages and a rural population of over 700 million present a very unique and challenge opportunity for various organizations. The fact that this population has completely different needs, wants and desires compared to the urban populace makes the situation even tougher to play in.

India’s rural sector has always been an enigma for organizations across the board. They have tried various ways and means of reaching the rural population. Some have been successful while others haven’t.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/24/rural-india-retail-opportunity/

Social Media Updates – Escapism and uncontrolled expressionism?
The advent of social networking sites in Indian lives has completely changed the way people communicate with each other. Instead of face–to–face communication, people these days prefer to “tweet”, “scrap” or write things on their “wall”. Social media is becoming an increasingly intrusive part of our lives. This can be seen from the fact that has turned into a platform for emotional outbursts, bitching, making holiday plans, flaunting new assets etc.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/21/social-media-updates/

Rising luxury car sales moving India up the elite club?
India’s rise as an upcoming global economic superpower is well known. Be it manufacturing, services, FMCG, automotive sector, its success has been well documented. With the advent of Nano and upcoming low cost models from various other companies, India is being regarded as the low cost car manufacturing hub of the world with 24 lakh cars being produced every year.

With its excellent R & D facilities to back the low cost labour, many multinationals have set up operations for this purpose. But now something more revolutionary is happening.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/21/indian-luxury-car-auto/

Competitive Advertising – Creating controversy to get Maximum Eyeballs!!
Coke and Pepsi

Jet Airways, Kingfisher and Go Air

Audi, BMW and Subaru

HUL and P&G

What do you think is common between them other than them being companies from the same industry?

All of them have at some point or the other engaged in what we call today as COMPETITIVE ADVERTISING! So what is it?

According to the dictionary, it is defined as –

A commonly used type of advertising that communicates the unique benefits of a product, differentiating it from the competition.

In management jargon, it is about how well one positions a product based on the competitive advantage of it. But today it is becoming more of a sabotage or hijack against other brands as is shown by the above examples.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/20/competitive-advertising/

Bharti Airtel–Perfect example of outsourcing all its activities! But can it succeed in Africa?
Airtel is one of the most prominent telecom companies in the world with its services spanning 19 countries in South Asia and Africa. It has a number of firsts to its credit which has positioned it much ahead of its competitors. It’s bouquet of fixed – line services, mobile services and also broadband have positioned it in a league of its own.

These statistics are a pointer of its growing dominance over others –

* 140+ million subscribers as of July 2010 (Vodafone comes way behind at 111 million subscribers)
* World’s third largest single country operator and fifth largest telecom operator in the world
* First Indian telecom operator to achieve the Cisco Gold certification for good competency, service, support and
customer satisfaction standards
* First mobile telephony company to outsource everything except marketing, sales and finance

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/20/bharti-airtel-outsourcing-africa-business/

Squeaky clean Filtered water? – It may not be so after all!
Esha Deol, Hema Malini and Ahana Deol talking about clean water!

Kajol and Ajay Devgan promoting the importance of purifying the water one drinks!

Smrita Irani saying that it’s every mother’s responsibility to provide clean water!

Kent, Whirlpool, Eureka Forbes and many other companies making water purifiers have for long used brand ambassadors to drive home their message of requirement of clean water. The fact in India that there is highly excessive ground water contamination gives them a strong potential to market its product. Off late they have also come up with new technologies like Reverse Osmosis etc. to guarantee greater purity.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/17/pure-filtered-drinking-water-not-safe/

Introducing Mandarin in India! – Would they teach Hindi there?
Our politicians are coming up with new and weird ideas by the day. Kapil Sibal would surely go down in the history of Indian politics as one of the most active education ministers in terms of work. When I say active, I mean that he has continuously come up with new ideas and reforms and made sure these ideas turned into reality.

Whether the ideas / reforms have been successful or unsuccessful is a different question altogether :) Many of his moves like having a single entrance exam for medical students and abolishing board exams have been ridiculed and praised in equal measure.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/16/mandarin-chinese-india/

In–house social networking sites: A new trend to retain twenty somethings?
Twitter, Facebook, Orkut, Linkedin etc. – you surely wouldn’t have missed at least knowing about sites if not have an account on them. They have brought the onset of social media into the world consciousness. Social networking has turned out to be a phenomenon across the world. It has gripped a large audience from the age group of 15–60 years.

Some of the mind–boggling statistics include –

* More than 500 million users on Facebook worldwide
* More than 190 million users on Twitter tweeting 65 million times a day
* More than 60 million users on Linkedin as of July 2010
* More than 19 million unique visitors on Orkut in India as of July 2010-09-14

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/14/in%E2%80%93house-social-networking-sites-trend/

Indian firms entering the South American agriculture sector in a big way!
Beaches…Parties…Brazilian Carnivals..

These are some of the words and thoughts which come into one’s mind when thinking of South America. Tourism and parties are one of the biggest money spinners in South America. So one cannot find fault with the Indians for having such a picture of the continent. But off late Indian firms are completely changing the way at which we look at South America.

First lets take a look at some of the facts and statistics:

Shree Renuka Sugars has made it to the club of the top 5 sugar producers in Brazil, the world’s largest sugarcane producer. It first bought sugar and ethanol producer Vale Do Ivai S.A. Acucar E Alcool in November 2009 for $240 million. In February 2010, it consolidated its position at the top by investing another $329 million for a 51-percent stake in Equipav SA Acucar e Alcool which is also a very large sugar producer

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/13/indian-companies-south-american-agriculture-sector/

IITs for medicine – Atrocious thinking by our politicians!!!!
The Indian Institutes of Technology have since long been the barometer of technological development in our country. However I or many of my fellow readers may disagree to this fact but the truth is that for the world they have been the most renowned institutes of our country generating very high intellectuals year after year. The fact that many of them have gone to work outside is a different matter altogether.

Their reputation has been built over the years over the years because of a number of reasons some of which have been mentioned here –

* Very strong entry barriers – Acceptance ratios following to as low as 1:60
* Fantastic alumni base – Alumni across the world in various top organizations
* Research and Development – Excellent facilities for conducting research

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/12/iit-offering-medicine-courses/

Government Panel to decide on CEO Salaries – Is it right?
Till recession hit globally, India had grown phenomenally at more than 8% per year for couple of years. This was possible due to the growth of many sectors primarily among them – Telecom, IT, Manufacturing to name a few. And this phenomenal growth also led to the ballooning of CEO salaries across organizations across various sectors.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/06/government-panel-ceo-salaries/


Air India – Most trusted brand in Indian aviation? Are you serious?

At the outset I would like to point out that I don’t have anything against Air India, Economic Times or AC Nielsen. I got the idea of this post after reading the recent article about Air India being voted as the most trusted brand in Indian aviation by the Economic Times survey of Most Trusted Brands. Yes you heard it right – Air India is the MOST TRUSTED BRAND IN INDIAN AVIATION !

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/04/most-trusted-aviation-brand-air-india/

Social Shopping anyone? Indians are moving in droves to buy goods online!
Till now, you must have heard about increasing number of Indians joining social networking sites and increasing Internet penetration across the nation. But have you heard of Indians buying goods online? Not many? Think again!

Here are some of the statistics from the AC Nielsen Global Online Shopping Report 2010 –

* Currently more 23% Indians surveyed don’t buy any goods online
* 8 out of 10 Indians surveyed plan to shop online in the next twelve months and more than a quarter indicate that
they spend towards 11% of their monthly expenditure on online purchases
* 71% Indians trust recommendations from their family, 64% from friends and 29% from product reviews while making
an online purchase decision
* More than 50% of Indians utilize social media sites to help them make purchase decisions
* Books (41%), Airline tickets / reservations (40%) and electronic equipments (36%) dominate the online purchase
basket

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/09/online-social-shopping/

Number of web users in India expected to triple by 2015 – [BCG study]
The number of people who use the Internet in the country is expected to increase at a phenomenal pace over the next 5 years. Although the penetration of personal computers and the Internet is still expected to be very low, a very high number of Indians are expected to log onto the Internet from their mobile phones, thanks to growth in Mobile Telephony.

Boston Consulting Group in their report – The Internet’s New Billion – highlight the emergence of Mobile Internet Users, especially from BRICI (Brazil, Russia, India, China and Indonesia) countries.

To read more long on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/02/mobile-internet-users-growth-india/

Videocon takes the mobile telephony price war to another level!
Videocon has been a late entrant into the mobile services segment. It entered this segment by starting off services in Tamil Nadu and then moved on a mission to begin services in the top 100 cities of the country. Videocon Group has set aside an investment of Rs 14,000 cr for this purpose. At that time, Videocon had promised a sub – one paisa effective tariff across various pockets which would be transparent and simple.

To read more long on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/09/01/videocon-mobile-telephony-price-war/

Executive or Part–time MBAs more popular than full–time MBA? [Statistics]
The effects of the recession are still being felt across the world. Unemployment rates are still high, inflation is a big problem, there are various problems in different sectors across the world – the downturn is still playing a lot in our minds. Coming out of this downturn has been much slower than the previous ones and thus its prolonged effect has been ever more problematic.

According to a recent survey by the Graduate Management Admission Council 2010 which analyzed 327 business schools across the world, the applications for full – time MBA saw an increase only in 44% of the MBA programs down from 77% of 2008. But during the same period the applications for part–time MBA as well as executive MBA saw an increase of more than 59% compared to the previous year (37%).

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/28/executive-part%E2%80%93time-mbas-popular-full%E2%80%93time-mba/

After Google Wave, the end of Orkut is nigh?
Google’s social networking initiatives seem to be in a complete free–fall and now the killer nail in the coffin could has been hit. Orkut which has always been successful only in the Indian and Brazilian markets, had over the past year or so stagnated in its growth. According to latest figures (July 2010) by the comScore report, Facebook has finally surpassed Orkut to become the number 1 social networking site in India.

To read log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/26/google-wave-orkut-demise-facebook-growth/

Students building their own satellites – Fantastic emerging trend in India!
The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has played a big role in the development of space technology in India. Vikram Sarabhai and Homi Bhabha are regarded as the two pioneers of space research in India. A large number of satellite vehicles have been launched by the ISRO since starting off with Aryabhatta in 1975.

But now things seem to be changing. Student developed satellites seem to be a new trend. The most interesting aspect is that this trend isn’t limited to the IITs and NITs but catching up thick and fast across various tier II and tier III institutes as well.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/28/student-satellites-india-trend/

wow ! A call center for Entrepreneurs – Udyami Helpline
India is called the ‘call center capital’ of the world. Even though China is giving it a run for the money, there is still a long way to go before that crown can be given to any other nation. When analyzed on certain parameters such as overall cost of outsourcing, labour costs, infrastructure costs, telecom costs etc, India still emerges as the most attractive call center destination for the world. All of this has led the call center industry to grow to US$ 300bn.

Until now, these call centers had people who spoke English with an American twang to provide 24 hour support to various customers of US clients. But one call center which has been inaugurated just recently looks set to change such an image of call centers. IT AIMS TO BE DIFFERENT!!!

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/25/entrepreneur-call-center-udyami-helpline/

Social Media in Kashmir…You can’t believe it? But it’s really happening!
In protests across the world against the administration and political leaders, technology has played a vital role – be it in Myanmar, Iran or even China. So why should our very own Kashmir stay behind? Social Media has slowly but surely started penetrating into this explosive pool called Kashmir and surely looks set for a long run.

The recent protests and spate of violence in Kashmir has been not because of the Pakistan influence but more due to the presence of the armed forces. The AFSPA which gives them special sweeping powers like arrest without warrant has always been a cause of concern and now people have come on to the roads and are clashing with the security forces.

Syed Shah Geelani gave a speech against non–violence in the midst of these clashes. A person uploaded a video of this on Facebook and he was very soon swamped with hundreds of comments. Kashmiris are using new media tools to give out information, videos and also mobilize opinion for their movement.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/22/social-media-kashmir/

Mcdonalds – First OOH campaign in 8 yrs!
Mcdonalds – one of the biggest food chains of the world and well loved in India too is back with a bang painting the cities of Bangalore and Mumbai ‘RED’! Yes you read it right! They have embarked on a massive outdoor campaign after a gap of 7 yrs and it looks to have snatched some eyeballs for sure.

The campaign is really simple. It focuses on the value for money proposition with the billboards and hoardings highlighting single products along with the price. In Mumbai, the campaign has covered 47 billboards and 27 bus shelters while in Bangalore it has covered touch points. The main reason for choosing these two cities initially was the fact that both of them have the highest number of McDonald’s outlets.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/21/mcdonalds-ooh-advertising-campaign/

Our political parties – Money making machines quite literally [Earnings]
Money can buy you anything…

Paisa bolta hai (Money speaks)…

Money hai toh honey hai… (If you have money, then you will surely get your love)

You must have surely heard some of these phrases. Looks like our political parties truly believe in that.

Politics has always been a game of money especially in our country since the last 15-20 years or so. Gone are the years when ministers were there who really worked for the people, supported them and had good intentions of making some change.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/19/indian-political-party-earnings/

IBM – The darkhorse in the Indian IT sector!
It is common knowledge that the IT sector is the largest employer of human capital in the country. TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Mahindra Satyam and Cognizant together employ more than 10 lakh [^] people across the world. But as usual, their highest numbers are from India.

As of June 30, TCS is the largest private sector employer in the country with 1,63,700 employees. But who do think is the number 2? Ambani, Tatas, Birla’s? YOU ARE WRONG! The answer is IBM. I was as shocked as you guys after reading this. But then there are a variety of reasons for this for this.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/18/ibm-darkhorse-indian-it-sector/

Single entrance Test for MBBS from 2011 – A blessing for the students!
India is the most competitive country in the world in terms of students appearing for various national exams. The number of students to seats ratio; be it in engineering, medicine or MBA can go from 5:1 to sometimes 15:1. Some of the mind boggling statistics include

* 13 lakh students appeared for AIEEE 2010
* More than 2 lakh students appeared for CBSE PMT 2009
* Around 3 lakh students appeared for CAT 2009

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/16/single-entrance-test-for-mbbs-from-2011/

Yahoo – Change is the name of the game?
One has always said that there are the best and the rest in every field. Even in the field of search engines despite the presence of other players like Ask Jeeves, Bing, Baidu etc, Google is the undoubted leader. I am sure you all must be wondering as to how I forgot Yahoo.

There was a time when Yahoo had become THE search engine which everyone logged onto. But today it’s not the case. The advent and subsequent crazy growth of Google has moved Yahoo into the second position. But events over the last one year and especially the new initiatives by Yahoo recently seem to have changed the perceptions of people associated with the industry. Can Yahoo fight back? Its moves give such an opinion.

According to a comScore report in June 2010, Google sites were number one with 179 million unique visitors while Yahoo came a close second at 170 million visitors.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/14/yahoo-game-change/

Aircel – From corporate social responsibility to real numbers!
Aircel is India’s fifth largest mobile service operator (as of Oct. 2009) providing both post-paid and prepaid services in as many as 18 out of 23 telecom circles in the country. It is joint venture between Maxis Communications of Malaysia and the Apollo hospital enterprise of India.

Aircel had long been one of the biggest players down South. But since 2005 it started looking for a pan–India expansion strategy. It has increased its presence across various telecom circles at breakneck speed. For this they have used a large number of initiatives which have captured the public imagination like never before. Some of its initiatives it used in Maharashtra when they launched last year -

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/12/aircel-growth-numbers/

B–Schools across the country in the fast lane to create a virtual presence!
Despite a lot of advancement of technology, only about 60 million people across the country have Internet access. But the silver lining among this is that 72% of this population are school and college students and youngsters in the age group (21-35). So Younger population is embracing Internet whole-heartedly.

Youngsters are the biggest users of social networks. This has resulted in the development of a flurry of social networks among the Indians – 16 million users on Orkut, 15 million users on Facebook and 2.5-3 million users on Twitter.

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/10/b%E2%80%93schools-social-media-adoption/

Indian Retail – The fall of Subhiksha and Vishal!
The Indian retail industry has been riding a wave for the last couple of years. According to a latest report, retail sales are expected to rise from US$ 343 billion currently to US$ 543 billion.

Reliance Fresh, Subhiksha, Vishal Retail, Spencer’s, More, Big Bazaar and many more have entered India since the modern format retail concept began. The expanding middle and upper classes has played a big role in the expansion of existing modern format stores and entry of new ones.

The biggest question is “Have all of these stores been successful?”

To read more log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/07/indian-retail-industry-subhiksha-vishal-retail-fall/

How well are Indian brands leveraging Facebook today?
Facebook recently crossed the 500 million users mark a few weeks ago. India has the 11th highest number of Facebook users at 10.5 million. Orkut still has a higher fan following among Indians with about 15 million users. But the overall usage of social media among the general public as well as the business users is relatively low in India even today.

But with time, more and more organizations are utilizing the power of social media. As of today, there are about 100 Indian brands on Facebook. When one goes through the list for the first time, there are few observations one can make from it –

To read more, log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/07/30/indian-brands-facebook-use/

Are Indian mobile handset brands giving their foreign counterparts a run for their money?
Micromax, Lava, Spice, Zen, Karbonn and many other Indian handset brands are making more than a mark in the market today.

They have together occupied more than 14% market share. The best part for them is that this has been at the cost of certain brands specifically Nokia losing its market share by more than 12% over the past year. So the question is what makes them tick and will they be able to survive?

To read more, log on to – http://trak.in/tags/business/2010/08/03/low-cost-indian-mobile-handset-brands/

http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/20/mahindra-rise-ad-campaign/

4 thoughts on “Trakin

  1. I think there is alot more that can be done with marketing online through social media but most brands havent levereged it too well yet. Brands in the west tend to do it alot more. Perhaps that awareness is yet to hit the corporations here.

    • You have pointed out correctly Rahul. In India its still a trend and organizations are using it as a tool more for marketing and promotions rather than real sales or e – commerce. But I am sure as the Internet penetration increases, the knowledge and correct way of use of social media would surely increase across the country.

  2. Unfortunately alot of people in India still have a certain sense of mistrust when it comes to e-commerce in India. Travel sites have taken off, but is there scope beyond travel? Issues like return and damage policy etc need to be addressed more carefully and people need to be incentivized to buy online. Hopefully as more and more people start selling online in India, these fears should fade away.
    However, one of the ways to quell customer fears is to start cash on delivery. This way, customers can pay for the products as they arrive and even have the option to reject a certain product if it is different from what they ordered on the site.

    • Yeah your idea of cash on delivery is a good one. One more thing which can be tried out is ecommerce not going to social networks. But instead social networks going to e-commerce. I saw a company developed in Netherlands which helps people to discuss on social networks while buying a particular product. This would also help only those people who are interested rather than irritate other people too.

      http://www.shopwithyourfriends.com

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