Tuesday, 29 October 2019

GeM signs MOU with Federal Bank

23rd October 2019, New DelhiGovernment e-Marketplace (GeM) signed Memorandum of Understanding with Federal Bank, a leader private sector bank in the country. GeM is a marquee initiative of the Government of India offering one stop platform facilitating online procurement of common use goods and services required by various government departments, organizations and PSUs. GeM provides tools for direct purchase, bidding and reverse auction in a transparent manner for government departments. In this initiative,  

Online integration for payments and various banking services is one of the priorities for GeM. GeM has already signed MoU with 15 Public Sector and Private Banks to enable this. Through this partnership, Federal Bank will be able to offer an array of services including transfer of funds through GeM Pool Accounts (GPA), advising of Performance Bank Guarantees (e-PBG) and Earnest Money Deposit (EMD) etc. to the registered users of the portal. The MoU will facilitate a cashless, paperless and transparent payment system on the portal and would create an efficient procurement system for government entities.

The MoU was signed by Shri S. Suresh Kumar, Addl. CEO, GeM and Shri R. Vardharajan, Country Head - Government Business, Federal Bank along with Shri Deepesh Gehlot, Director (GeM) and Shri Hemant Kumar Mahindru, State Business Head – Government Business, Federal Bank in the presence of Shri Talleen Kumar, CEO, GeM.

GeM is also working with Banks, TReDs (Trade Receivables Discounting System) and SIDBI to provide invoice financing and bill discounting to the MSMEs registered in GeM. This will help MSMEs access easy credit and do better business with Government.

Irwin Allan Sealy's - 'The Trotter-nama' 30th Anniv edition

The Trotter-nama
byIrwin Allan Sealy
The 30th Anniversary Edition, with a new Afterword 

The Trotter-nama is a great novel, a definitive work of fiction’ India Today
‘Never, never a dull moment in this verbal juggernaut, this long-to-be-remembered account of the Anglo-Indian ethos’ The Hindu
‘He has done for his community what…Joyce did for the Irish, illuminating its soul through sheer poetry and imagination’ The Indian Express
In the eighteenth century, Justin Aloysius Trotter, or the Great Trotter, tumbles earthward to his death while surveying his vast lands and admiring his wealth from a hot air balloon. Two centuries later, the Seventh Trotter, Eugene Aloysius, narrates the epic story of a family at the fraying ends of its past glory.
Laced with verses, advertisements, journal entries, elegies, quotations and learned interpolations, The Trotter-Nama is the chronicle of seven generations of Trotters as they struggle to hold on to their shifting identities. They are Indian at lunch and British at dinner; eat curry with a dessert spoon and dessert with a teaspoon. Over the years, the expanding clan of Trotters produces soldiers, artists, poets, politicians-even a dhoti-wearing nationalist. As their excesses slowly turn to improvidence and the family chateaux is turned into a hotel, their increasing numbers and declining fortunes strain against a rapidly changing country.
Allan Sealy's epic comedy of manners about Britain and India's motley offspring is as much a treat today as it was thirty years ago.
Paperback | 664 pp | 599/-

Unity Technologies, BYJU's Indian hackathon with a different spin

Unity Technologies joins hands with BYJU’S to give their first Indian hackathon a different spin
~Invites game developers to disrupt learning through innovative gameplay mechanics

October 24 2019, India: Unity Technologies, creator of the world’s most widely-used real-time 3D development platform, today announced their first gaming hackathon in India in partnership with BYJU’S, the world’s most valuable EdTech company. Starting on 16 October 2019, this two weeks challenge will bring together over 1300 budding & professional game developers, artists and designers from across India to come up with creative solutions to disrupt the way kids learn today using innovative games and interactive formats.

The hackathon aims to develop games/simulations/interactive formats for children under 8 years of age. Developers behind the top 15 entries in Unity Hackathon 2019 will have the opportunity to present their work to a panel of industry experts at the third edition of Unite India in Kochi from 14th to 15th November 2019, while the ultimate winners will walk away with cash prizes worth INR 3,00,000. In addition to the hackathon, Unity and BYJU’S have formulated three challenges to give the participants a real sense of the excitement & thrill behind developing highly innovative learning games. Winners of these challenges will get the opportunity to win an additional cash prize up to INR 50,000 per challenge.

On announcing the partnership, Ranjit Radhakrishnan, Chief Product Officer, BYJU’S said, “We strongly believe that the power of gaming is truly realised when your solutions manage to demystify concepts and actually help someone become a better, life-long learner. These four unique challenges will offer a great perspective to developers and designers about how much the learning ecosystem has evolved and how their skills can generate unbelievable impact in this industry. At BYJU’S, we are committed to disrupting learning with highly innovative gameplay and delight our students with unmatched learning experiences.”

Mr. Anumukonda Ramesh, Country Manager, India subcontinent, Unity Technologies said “We are very excited about the partnership which brings forward the first-ever skilling hackathon in India to solve real-world challenges with emerging technologies. The purpose of this hackathon is to bring together creative ideas on how to use the new age technologies in bringing awareness and crafting a digitized learning environment for children.”

This is a flagship initiative by Unity Technologies in partnership with BYJU’S - The Learning App and Skillenza.  For more information, please visit: - https://skillenza.com/challenge/unity-india-hackathon

About the events:
  • Hackathon: Build a game/simulation/interactive format that serves a playground for kids to explore, experiment and learn via play. 
  • Game Design Challenge: Craft a design that uses rich ways of learning via innovative gameplay mechanics, art and narratives at your advantage.
  • 2D Game Art Challenge: Create entertaining and engaging game art and elements for young kids.
  • 2D Animation Challenge: Breathe life & personality into a character and tell a story by using just animation. 

A Gift of Health and a Gift to Nature


Strings of pretty, sparkly lights delicately looped along busy streets, strains of music playing and strikingly colourful decorations in stores are common sights and sounds come this time of year. These are sure-shot spirit lifters, and the excitement across the country is palpable as Diwali is around the corner, as we gear up for the festive season. Cleaning our home, what to wear and what to gift our near and dear ones are thoughts at the top of our minds right now.

No Diwali is complete without the festive food so lovingly prepared and shared among family and friends. However, (unfortunately!), there is no doubt that these delicacies can be quite unwholesome. With numerous people having to take care of what they eat due to a variety of health issues, nowadays we find that people increasingly admit that health is their top priority these days. After all, without a fit body, we can do nothing.

Therefore, during the season of Diwali, what better way to gift than a healthy hamper? And what is healthier than honey? In our country, honey is used extensively in food, religious and beauty rituals. An age-old ingredient in delicious dishes and a healthy contribution to overall wellness, honey should definitely be incorporated into our daily diet. Just a couple of spoons of honey per day is known to improve heart health, heal wounds and provide antioxidants, among several other benefits.

In India, very few social enterprises exist that produce pure, organic, gourmet honey with unique and exotic flavours such as Tulsi, Wild Forest, Eucalyptus, Litchi, Desert Bloom. The certified organic, all-natural single-origin honey is devoid of any additives, artificial flavouring or added sugar and is of exceptional quality.  Consuming this honey will certainly increase immunity and provide a great deal of energy and stamina.

But this is not all! These enterprises work with marginal farmers across the country, training them to be beekeepers. Bee boxes are carefully placed on their farms to aid in pollination of crops. Thus, the quality and quantity of their yield improves, and farmers are provided with an additional source of revenue through the sale of the organic honey! Through these programmes, farmers are given market access, equipped to increase their income and improve their livelihood! More importantly, women beekeepers are provided strong support, driving socio-economic empowerment. Additionally, the bees, which contribute to diverse, interconnected ecosystems are nurtured and protected.

So, this Diwali, gift health, give back to nature!

This article has been written by Vijaya Pastala, CEO and Founder, Under The Mango Tree

The author is the founder and CEO of Under The Mango Tree, an innovative and award-winning social enterprise that supports Indian farmers with incomes and improving crop productivity through indigenous beekeeping, and marketing the honey collected directly to consumers. Since its inception in 2010, it has impacted over 25,000 lives, improving rural incomes by over 30 percent. 

IndiaMART reports 28% YoY growth in revenue from operations

New Delhi, India, October 24, 2019: IndiaMART InterMESH Limited (referred to as “IndiaMART” or the “Company”), today announced its financial results for the second quarter ending September 30, 2019.

Performance Highlights: Q2 FY2020 vs. Q2 FY2019:
§  Consolidated Revenue from Operations of Rs. 157 Crore, YoY growth of 28%
§  Consolidated EBITDA of Rs. 36 Crore representing 23% Margin
§  Consolidated Cash generated from Operations at Rs. 42 Crore

 Highlights for the Quarter ended September 30, 2019:                                                                    
  1. IndiaMART reported consolidated Total Revenue from Operations of Rs. 157 Crores, 28% growth YoY primarily due to increase in number of paying subscribers as well as higher realization from existing customers. Consolidated Deferred Revenue grew by 28% from Rs. 492 Crores in Q2 FY19 to Rs. 631 Crore in Q2 FY20 Crore leading to much better visibility for revenues in future.
  2. Consolidated EBITDA for Q2 FY20 was Rs. 36 Crore representing a margin expansion from 18% in Q2 FY19 to 23% in Q2 FY20. Profit before tax for the quarter was at Rs 51 Crore representing a Profit before tax margin of 29% as compared to 23% in Q2 FY19.
  3. Tax expense for the quarter was at Rs 42 Crore which included one-time impact of Rs. 31.4 Crore related to change in tax rate and law as the Company has opted to move to 25% tax regime as per the option given in Taxation Amendment Ordinance 2019. Due to the above, the consolidated Net Profit for the period stood at Rs. 9 Crores.
  4. The Company generated consolidated Cash Flow from Operations of Rs. 42 Crore leading to Cash and Investments of Rs. 780 Crore as on Sept 30, 2019 as compared to 503 Crore on Sept 30, 2018, an increase of 55% YoY. 
Operational Highlights:
Total business enquiries delivered witnessed an increase to 123 million from 118 million, a growth of 4%.
Supplier Storefronts grew to 5.7 million in Q2 FY20 from 5.4 million in Q2 FY19, an increase of 6% YoY. During the same period, paying subscription suppliers witnessed an increase to 137 thousand from 119 thousand, a growth of 15%.
We are pleased to report results for the quarter ending September 2019 on expected lines, showcasing continued growth. The results are reflection of our well diversified business model and unique value proposition that we have developed over the years. Going forward, as we continue to steer ourselves in the challenging macro environment, we remain cautiously optimistic of maintaining the growth momentum.

Dale Carnegie of India Educates 500 Underprivileged Children on Global Day of Giving

Mumbai, October 25, 2019: Dale Carnegie of India celebrated ‘Global Day of Giving’ by training more than 500 underprivileged children across India. The children were trained with basic communication and people skills that will support them with essential life skills from October 22 – October 25, 2019. Dale Carnegie of India partnered with NGOs such as Akshay Patra, Kotak Education Trust, Akanksha Foundation, Bharti Foundation, Navjyoti India and Sonalika Foundation for this initiative. 

In Global day of giving was implemented in Mumbai, Pune, New Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Chennai. Globally, over 100 Dale Carnegie offices around the world participate in the Global Day of Giving to strengthen communities by developing the leadership and relationship skills of young adults. The training workshops had engaging exercises designed to help children hone skills like interpersonal communication, focus and self-control, critical thinking and relationship building lessons that will help them prepare well for life challenges.
Commenting on the initiative, Pallavi Jha, Chairperson & Managing Director, Dale Carnegie of India said, “Education is the most important catalyst for social transformation. Global Day of Giving has always helped us to instill a sense of purpose for the country’s youth. We are fortunate to empower young minds through literacy and build a foundation for those who are lesser privileged, to improve their lives. We look forward to making a positive impact with this initiative and shaping many more bright futures of India.”

Dale Carnegie of India represents the first corporate face of the Training Industry in India. As a company dedicated to Performance Enhancement, it offers ‘Talent Development Solutions’ in the areas of Leadership, Communications, Presentations & Public Speaking, Sales Training, World Class Customer Service, Interpersonal Skills, Building High Performance Teams, Media Training, E – Learning, Executive Coaching and Profiling & Competency Assessment tools in a variety of formats to suit various needs. In over 10 years of its operations, Dale Carnegie of India has succeeded in setting new global benchmarks and has created a quiet revolution in this sector. The incredible work of Dale Carnegie of India has been well recognized by Dale Carnegie & Associates by way of numerous awards for Superior Training Quality, Most Number of Trained Graduates, Best Start – up Operations Award, etc. Headquartered in Mumbai, Dale Carnegie Training India has its branch offices in Delhi, Bengaluru and Pune.

Luc Debove appointed Executive Pastry Chef at École Nationale Supérieure de Pâtisserie

New Delhi, 24 October 2019 – Luc Debove was appointed Executive Pastry Chef at École Ducasse – École Nationale Supérieure de Pâtisserie (ENSP), located in Yssingeaux in the Haute-Loire region of France, and regarded as a global benchmark in the art of pastry and ice-cream making. Having built an exceptional career over the past 30 years in Michelin-starred establishments and renowned learning institutions, Debove’s credentials include the titles of World Champion of Ice Cream and Meilleur Ouvrier de France in Ice Cream-Making. He will be an asset for the development of the ENSP both in France and abroad.
After earning a Certificat d’Aptitude Professionnel (CAP) in pastry, completing an apprenticeship in pastry, confectionery and chocolate-making, and obtaining his Master Pastry Chef diploma in 1996, Debove joined the Meridien Beach Plaza in Monaco in 1999 as Pastry Chef, before moving on to the Royal Riviera hotel in St-Jean Cap Ferrat. At the same time, he became a faculty member for the Maîtrise en pâtisserie taught by the Chambre des Métiers des Alpes-Maritimes. He then relocated to Paris as a pastry-making instructor at École Bellouet Conseil.
From 2007 to 2016, Luc Debove served as Pastry Chef at the Grand Hôtel du Cap Ferrat, the renowned Michelin-starred Four Seasons hotel on the French Riviera where he headed a brigade of up to 25 pastry chefs.
Apart from these professional experiences, Debove took part innumerous competitions throughout his career. He won first prize for Sugar Art Creations in 1995 in Nice, as well as first prize in the 2006 French National Ice Sculpture Cup. In 2008, he was awarded the title of French Ice Sculpture Champion, followed by first prize in the European Championship of Frozen Desserts at the Sirha world hospitality and food service event in Lyon.
In 2010, he was crowned World Ice Cream Champion in Rimini, and named Meilleur Ouvrier de France in Ice Cream-Making in 2011. His was awarded with the distinction of the National Order of Agricultural Merit in 2015.
This broad range of experience enabled him to acquire valuable qualities and to be equally at ease in the making of pastry, ice cream, bakery products, confectionery and chocolate, as well as in teaching and passing on the know-how that he has now decided to place at the service of École Ducasse – École Nationale Supérieure de Pâtisserie.

Today, at the age of 47, Luc Debove is taking up the position of Executive Pastry Chef at the Yssingeaux school: "I am delighted to be joining the ENSP team and support them in the next few years in their development in France and abroad.”
Debove will be responsible for working with the ENSP teams to develop the school's future programs and promote their reputation both in France and abroad, as well as delivering masterclasses for young learners and professionals. As an ENSP ambassador, he will strengthen the school's international influence through events, training and advisory activities, along with the launch of new courses.
He will support the opening of the new École Ducasse – Paris Campus in Meudon, scheduled for September 2020, which will also host the ENSP's flagship programs, namely the Bachelor en arts de la pâtisserie française (three years), the Diplôme en arts de la pâtisserie française (six months) and the Essentiels des arts des pâtisseries Française (two months).
Elise Masurel, Managing Director of École Ducasse, said: "We are delighted to be able to count on the outstanding talent of Luc Debove, who will be a tremendous asset in promoting the expertise of École Ducasse schools around the world.”

IDFC FIRST Bank's Strong and sustained growth in CASA Deposit franchise, Retail loans

Highlights of the IDFC First Bank's performance for the QUARTER ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2019

The Bank reported a Profit Before Tax of Rs. 100 crore for the quarter ended September 30, 2019, as
compared to a Loss of Rs. 583 crore as on September 30, 2018.

The Bank chose to exercise the option permitted under section 115BAA of the Income Tax Act, 1961,
introduced by the Taxation Law Amendment Ordinance, 2019, to move to new corporate tax rate of 25%which will give long term benefits to the Bank. 

After considering the tax impact of Rs. 751 crore due to markdown of existing Deferred Tax Assets, the Bank reported a Net Loss of Rs. 680 crore for Q2 FY20. 

The full impact of this change has been incorporated in the tax line of the Profit & Loss Statement.

Net Interest Income for the reported quarter was at Rs. 1,363 crore, up 202% Y-o-Y from Rs 451 crore (pre-merger), and up 16% QoQ (Rs. 1,174 crore).

Total Income (Net Interest Income plus fees and other revenues) for the quarter was at Rs. 1,712 crore, up 200% Y-o-Y (Rs. 571 crores), and up 15% QoQ (Rs. 1485 crore).

The Net Interest Margin for the Bank grew to 3.43% for the quarter, from 1.56% pre-merger, in a span of just nine months since merger.

The Cost to Income ratio of the Bank improved to 75.61% for the quarter, from 96.72% per-merger, and compared to 78.60% last quarter Q1 FY20.

The Pre-Provisioning Operating Profit of the Bank has increased to Rs. 417 crore, up 2133% YoY from Rs. 19 crore in the corresponding period last year, and by 31% sequentially (Rs. 318 crore in Q1 FY20)

The Profit Before Tax of the Bank for the quarter was at Rs. 100 crore, as against a loss of Rs. 583 crore in the corresponding period last year and as against a loss of Rs. 963 crore in Q1 FY20.

The Gross NPA of the Bank was stable at 2.62% in Q2 FY 20 as compared to 2.66% as of Q1 FY 20.
The NET NPA of the bank was stable at 1.17% as compared to 1.35% as of June 30, 2019.

The asset quality in the retail business continues to be stable. The gross NPA was 2.31% (Q2 FY 20) as compared to 2.32% (Q1 FY 20); the Net NPA reduced to 1.08% ( Q2 FY 20) as compared to 1.14% (Q1 FY 20).

Dhoni, Watson and Bravo to celebrate Diwali with festive collection from PETER ENGLAND

Peter England celebrates Diwali collection with the Maestros of Chennai Super Kings 

The launch is supported by a comprehensive campaign is being featured nationally across 300 cities

Bangalore, October, 2019Peter England, the leading menswear brand from Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Ltd. joined hands with the maestros of Chennai Super Kings Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Shane Watson and Dwayne Bravo to celebrate the spirit of Diwali with their signature Festive Collection. The latest campaign announcing the launch of the festive finery highlights a distinct line of men’s special occasion wear ranging from Nehru jackets with a contemporary twist, fusion wear, kurtas and shirts in rich vibrant colours replete with motifs and designs. The vibrant yet rare colors with trendy silhouettes and rich fabrics set the mood for a newer, edgier and a more distinctive style statement this festival of light.

The new campaign features a refreshing TVC starring the champions of Chennai Super Kings, as they suit up in stylish Nehru Jackets in contemporary color palettes. The campaign has debuted nationally across 300 cities in multiple mediums like Television, Print, Online, movie screens and Out of Home. The film is being aired across 2500 screens, digital channels in over 30 major TV channels thus supported by a diverse promotion strategy. 

Commenting on the launch Manish Singhai, COO, Peter England said, “The Peter England Festive collection offers a rich promise to every Indian man to be at his fashionable best. Our latest offering is something that promises to fill their wardrobes with interesting patterns, designs and contemporary styles. They can now look beyond the usual options and dress differently for different occasions. The campaign features the  CSK stars and bring to life the brand’s high voltage fashion quotient. A highly focused marketing plan is currently being executed across platforms to reach our consumers.”

The refreshing 30 seconds video puts the spotlight on the cricketing superstars engaging in a light hearted banter. The opening frame captures Watson and Bravo embracing the festivity, by sporting traditional sherwanis. Enter MS Dhoni in a Nehru Jacket in rich festive yellow; looking resplendent. He manages to impress his team mates who in turn shower compliments. The summer jacket which has been sported by some of the most famous personalities worldwide is indeed a posh choice. The narration is clear, this festive season look for chic yet contemporary alternatives. The exclusive clothing pieces from the collection marked by Ornate and Dobby Prints and the distinct White on White Opal Burnout Prints are perfect for men to dress sharply during the festival of lights.

Diwali is a standout amongst the most vivid, hallowed and brightest celebrations commended each year with extraordinary happiness and eagerness. This year the fashion forward gentry of the country can not only look their best but also express themselves with fashion and flamboyance.

With Delhi and Kerala Police, Pioneer conducts raid against fakes

Pioneer conducts raid against fake speakers with Delhi and Kerala police

·         More than 1000 counterfeit products seized in Delhi and Kerala
·         In Delhi, the raid was conducted in areas like Karol Bagh and Lajpat Nagar
New Delhi, 26th October 2019: Pioneer, the renowned Japanese manufacturer of car infotainment, conducted a raid with the help of Delhi and Kerala police against the circulation of fake electronic items in the respective state markets. The raid was aimed at manufacturers, whole sellers, and retailers of Pioneer who were disseminating fake electronic items such as speakers. More than 1000 fake Pioneer speakers were found and all the counterfeit items were seized by the police officials and local commissioners.

In Delhi the raid was conducted in electronic consumer markets such as Karol Bagh and Lajpat Nagar, and in Kerela popular markets such as Thirror, Kanur, and Cochin were targeted. These locations are the main hub for auto accessories and have a big number of electronic consumers.

The officials will be taking legal action on the people who were caught red-handed while circulating the imitation of branded electronics in the market along with taking them to appear in front of the court for these illegal activities.

“There have been plenty of times where raids like these have taken place in the past against the circulation of imitated electronics in the market and heavy penalties have been imposed on guilty. There are still a lot of dealers and manufacturers who are producing the exact imitations of branded products and it is high time for the government to take strict action against them as it is affecting the authenticity, credibility & goodwill of the companies”, said the spokesperson of Pioneer.

Dr. Harsh Vardhan to announce scale-up of innovations for accelerating India’s resolve to eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis

28th October 2019: National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India is organizing a National Symposium with the theme ‘United to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis’ on 30 October 2019 in New Delhi. The symposium is to be inaugurated by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare and will include representation from NITI Aayog and senior government officials from 21 States and UTs.

The symposium that will bring together diverse stakeholders including global and national public health experts, partners & donors, research organizations, pharmaceutical companies will deliberate on building a common vision towards achieving the elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis by 2021.

Dr. Neeraj Dhingra, Director, National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), says “It is very appropriate that the meeting is being held at this time of the year as 10 states and union territories including high-burden states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Odisha will implement large scale MDA campaign starting in November 2019 that aim to benefit around 106 million population. Out of these, the new Triple Drug Therapy (IDA) will be scaled up in 16 districts across 5 states namely Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Karnataka, and Maharashtra to accelerate the pace of elimination of the disease in the country. “

Since the launch of the Global Program to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GPELF) by the World Health Organization in 2000, endemic countries across the world including India have adopted a twin pillar strategy including prevention through Mass Drug Administration (MDA) using combination of 2 anti-filarial drugs (DEC and Albendazole) and providing Morbidly Management and Disability Prevention (MMDP) services to those affected by the disease. According to the World Health Organization, MDA is comparable to the top 10 most cost-effective health interventions in the world. Till 2018, 16 out of the 72 endemic countries[1] have been certified by WHO to have achieved elimination of lymphatic filariasis as a public health problem.

Learnings from endemic states in India that have stopped MDA and are under surveillance like Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Daman and Diu and Goa and success from IDA pilot districts of Arwal (Bihar), Nagpur (Maharashtra), Simdega (Jharkhand) and Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) will be shared during the day long symposium. The focus of discussions during the meeting will be on: Operationalizing scale-up of innovations like the WHO approved Triple Drug Therapy which uses a combination of 3 anti-filarial drugs - Ivermectin, Diethylcarbamazine citrate (DEC) and Albendazole (IDA); Role of effective communications & social mobilization and reaching communities through compelling stories; Creating collaborations and integration between NTD elimination programs like Lymphatic Filariasis and Kala Azar; Ensuring sustained financial prioritization to accelerate elimination efforts for Lymphatic Filariasis; and Increasing access and quality of Morbidity Management and Disability Prevention (MMDP) services to people who are already affected with the disability. 

The meeting will be an occasion for mutual sharing of experiences between states and planning for the expected final steps for India to move into what is hoped to be the final phase of elimination efforts for Lymphatic Filariasis in India.

Tuesday, 1 October 2019

Jet2 from UK invests in India through the launch of Jet2 Travel Technologies in Pune

L-R - Mark Buxton – Group Financial Controller Dart Group, Director on board of Jet2 Travel Technologies,  Richard Chambers – HR Director Jet2.com & Jet2 Holidays, Saurabh Limaye – Jet2 Travel Technologies Managing Director, Gary Brown, Executive Director and Group Chief Financial Officer – Dart Group (Jet2.com & Jet2 Holidays parent company), Gary Isaacs – CIO Jet2.com & Jet2 Holidays

·         Jet2.com and Jet2 Holidays set up Jet2 Travel technologies (Jet2TT), its global software development & innovation centre in Pune
·         Jet2TT plans to build a 150-member strong tech team over the next 18 months
·         Jet2 to setup an innovation center in India to work with technology startups to develop travel technology solutions

Pune, October 01, 2019: Jet2 (Jet2.com and Jet2 Holidays) today announced its aggressive growth plans in India at the launch of Jet2 Travel Technologies (Jet2TT), its global software development & innovation centre in Pune. J2TT plans to build and nurture a strong technology workforce of over 150 professionals in the coming 18 months to build world-class travel software solutions. The company will also hire fresh talent from various colleges across Pune through graduate schemes and internship programs. The state-of-the-art 16,000 sq. ft. space would operate in a Virtual Captive Centre (VCC) model, which would be powered by Pune based Dataction Analytics.

Confirming the India growth story of J2TT Mr. Gary Isaacs, Chief Information Officer, Jet2 said, “We conducted a thorough research across major cities in India and narrowed down to Pune as our ideal choice to launch the VCC for multiple strategic reasons. Pune already has an extremely large pool of quality IT professionals along with a sound education ecosystem which consistently generates fresh technology talent every year. Furthermore, Pune is rapidly becoming the model ‘Smart City’ of India with the government making significant investments across infrastructure projects such as Metro, National Highways and the International Airport. It also helps that Pune has been ranked No. 1 city in the country in 'ease of living' index 2018 released by the ministry of housing and urban affairs. We believe that Pune would become one of the most ideal places to work in India in the near future.”

The VCC in Pune is primarily setup to support Jet2’s continued rapid growth. Mr. Gary Brown, Executive Director and Group Chief Financial Officer – Dart Group (Parent company of Jet2.com & Jet2 Holidays) said, “Jet2 has always been dedicated to giving its customers memorable holiday experiences by offering great products and excellent customer service at affordable prices. Our company’s revenue has almost tripled since 2015, from £1.25 billion to £3.14 billion in 2019, while maintaining a very impressive profit growth, profitability having grown from £40 million to £177m in the same period. We believe our IT team has been a solid pillar of this growth story and will continue to be so in the future. That is why we have decided to ramp up our technology team here in Pune which would aptly support our technology teams in Leeds and Sheffield (UK).”

Going forward, Jet2 would also be setting up an innovation centre in Pune, which would look at closely working with technology startups in India to develop travel based technology solutions. Mr. Isaacs further added, “Our eventual goal is to make significant investments in building a strong technology workforce across development, testing, architecture and business intelligence & analytics. We believe the talent pool in Pune is at par with the global standards and is well capable of innovating and delivering world-class travel based solutions for a global audience. J2TT would also be looking at closely working with likeminded technology startups here in India, which would further boost employment.”

Jet2 has seen a sustained and impressive growth since 2015 and plans to continue to grow in the coming years. Therefore, the IT delivery centre in Pune, Jet2TT will play a vital part in supporting this business growth. Commenting on the occasion, Mr. Saurabh Limaye, Managing Director, Jet2TT said, “Along with delivering high quality software for Jet2, Jet2TT also aims at creating innovative software that will further enhance the experience for Jet2 customers and enhance the internal business processes to achieve bigger milestones in the near future. Jet2TT offers an opportunity for Indian colleagues to work alongside our UK colleagues that would give some unique international exposure and help them progress in their careers. Learning and development is an integral part of the IT strategy and as such J2TT will offer various trainings, hand’s on exposure to cutting edge technologies and certifications to our employees to help them up-skill to stay relevant in this competitive market.”

Jet2TT will generate employment for the IT segment in the Pune market over the course of time, therefore giving an opportunity to job seekers to work with a world renowned brand. 

Technology start-up Freightwalla expands footprint to Nashik

Digital freight forwarding firm aims to target agro-based products, wines, processed foods, automobiles and auto parts, medical and health care product manufacturers

Mumbai/ Nashik, 1st October 2019: In a bid to expand its reach in the state of Maharashtra, India's fastest-growing technology-enabled freight forwarding startup- Freightwalla aims to tap manufacturing units in Nashik. This will be the company’s first foray outside Mumbai within the state. After raising seed capital funding of INR 5 crores from Kae Capital and Tekton Ventures in December 2018, Freightwalla witnessed a staggering 700 per cent rise in the shipment volumes and revenue.
Nashik has seen an exponential upsurge in the manufacturing sector lately and has been on the growth radar since the past few years. Agro-based products, automobiles and auto parts, processed foods, medical and health care products, wines etc. are some of the items which get exported from the region in higher volumes round the year and require freight forwarding solutions.
Mr. Sanjay Bhatia, CEO – Freightwalla said, “Nashik has become one of the prime locations for manufacturing companies in the past decade. Also, recently there have been some promising policies and initiatives which have been implemented by the government because of which we have witnessed some astonishing growth in small and medium sized manufacturing enterprises in the region, and that’s where we see an opportunity for our first step to expand our reach outside Mumbai within the state of Maharashtra.”
Freightwalla is an intelligent digital platform that deploys technology in freight forwarding processes to improve the cost & time efficiency, while also offering automated tools for creation and management of documentation for large shipments.
Freightwalla’s simplified interface for enterprise clients having larger shipment volumes helps them manage their internal workflow using digitization and automation of the processes involved; thus, resulting in standardization of the procedures and reducing the probability of errors, delays, or losses during transit. Instant quotations from multiple service providers, full cost-breakdown with no hidden charges, intelligent real-time cargo tracking and updates, data-driven decision making are some of the upgraded USPs which will auger well for the ever-increasing freight forwarding demands of the manufacturing industry in Nashik.
Since its inception in 2017, Freightwalla has been serving firms across a wide range of industry sectors with a model that addresses the modern business needs of simplicity and transparency for shippers worldwide. With a mix of state-of-the-art analytics, automation and logistics technology, it aims at tackling the inefficiencies involved in moving goods internationally, taking the stress out of global shipping.
About Freightwalla:
Headquartered in Mumbai, Freightwalla is India’s fastest growing technology enabled freight forwarding start-up. The company focuses on bringing increased value and transparency to international shippers by empowering them with state-of-the-art technology and tools to better organise and monitor their logistics online through its platform freightwalla.com

11th PLASTINDIA to be bigger than previous editions, to actively focus on responsible innovation to conserve environment

Expecting 2000 + exhibitors from 45+ countries including India to showcase latest innovation and technology in plastic packaging, manufacturing at 2021 Expo in New Delhi

Mumbai, 01st October 2019: Plastindia Foundation recently held an event in Mumbai to
announce the launch of the 11th Edition of PLASTINDIA to be held in the year 2021 in New
Delhi. PLASTINDIA is the third largest exhibition of its kind in the world and the largest in India.
It is held once every three years and this edition will be organized from February 4 to 8, 2021at
ITPO, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi.

The launch event in Mumbai was graced by Shri Kashi Nath Jha – Joint Secretary, Department
of Chemicals & Petrochemicals, Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers, Government of India along with Shri Rajesh Agrawal, IAS, Executive Director, India Trade Promotion Organization, Mr. Jigish
Doshi – President, Plastindia Foundation, Mr Ashok Goel Chairman National Advisory Board,
Plastindia Foundation and Mr. Ajay Shah – Chairman, National Executive Council Plastindia

The PLASTINDIA 2021 International Plastic Exhibition & Conference will be supported by
Department of Chemicals & Petrochemicals - Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers, Government
of India. This edition of the expo will be held at the new world class venue at ITPO, Pragati
Maidan, New Delhi and will showcase India as a global hub for sourcing processed items
related to plastics, raw material, machinery and various other products for use in different

PLASTINDIA 2021 is known to provide a superlative platform to showcase world-class
innovations and products from the plastic industry that are likely to benefit a host of sectors.
Over the years, the Expo has successfully facilitated support from the government where the
latter has constituted several groups to address important issues like quality and
specifications, recycling and waste management etc. of plastic. While PLASTINDIA and
Plastindia Foundation are proactively engaged in enabling the sustainable growth of the
Indian Plastic Industry, there has also been an ample amount of focus on quality, human
health, and most importantly environment.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri Jha said, “The plastics industry in India is contributing
significantly in the economic development and growth of various key sectors in the country.
Right from automotive, agriculture, horticulture, construction, medical equipment, health
care, irrigation, sanitation, drinking water, sports, plastic composites and packaging – all
sectors are impacted by the use of plastic. In fact, the food security industry requires the
highest ever safe, secure & hygienic packaging and its perfect solution is provided by Flexible
Packaging including Plastic woven sacks. The plastics industry continues to break into newer spheres, thereby enabling India to manufacture world class products. I am optimistic that the
PLATINDIA 2021 will be a reflection of this and I wish the team great success.”
PlastIndia is also taking active steps to support the decision of the Central Government for
single use plastics. It is working towards fully backing the circular economy with focus on
Recycle and Multiple use of Plastic Products in line with the vision of the Hon’ble Prime
Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi ji.

Plastindia Foundation will meet all stakeholders and submit concrete proposals to the
Department with special focus on Plastics and Environment in the near future. Mr. Jigish Doshi
said, “We are devoted to promoting excellence in the field of plastics and making India a
preferred sourcing base in plastic products for the world. But we will also be focusing very
specifically on environmental concerns. We completely support the vision of our Hon’ble Prime
Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi ji and will be focusing on the idea of Recycle and Multiple
use of Plastic Products. This edition of PLASTINDIA - 2021 is all set to surpass the landmarks
created by its previous editions. It will see the presence of more than 2,000+ exhibitors from
India, participants from 45+ countries and over 2 lakh business visitors-- both national and
global. With every edition we are growing and building more number of exhibitors, visitors and

Mr. Ajay Shah said, “Our mission is to enhance the image and growth of the Indian plastics
industry by holding world-class exhibitions in India, at regular intervals. Plastindia Foundation
has been taking this initiative over the years to bring together the best in this field globally,
which has provided a platform for our domestic industrialists to share their experiences with
their global counterparts.”

Mr. Doshi further added, “The focus should be on developing new technologies and
innovations in order to facilitate growth of the plastic industry. India's plastics industry offers
immense potential in terms of capacity, infrastructure and skilled manpower. In this age of
globalisation and constant need to improve the standard of living, the demand for plastic is
bound to increase exponentially and turn India into the world's next plastic destination. But
having said this we must use plastic responsibly to minimise its impact on environment. There
is a need to create awareness about recycle, re-use of plastic and adopt a better waste
management facility for sustainable growth of the industry.”

Some of the dignitaries present at the Launch Function of PLASTINDIA – 2021 include Mr.
Erhard Wienkamp, Executive Director, Foreign Trade Fairs Division,Messe Duesseldorf GmbH,
and Shri Dr S K Nayak, DG, CIPET

The previous edition of PLASTINDIA 2018, which was held in Gujarat, had been inaugurated
by the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Gujarat Shri Vijay Rupani. The expo had proved to be an
extremely successful global event, attracting a large number of participants and visitors from
across the world.