Tuesday, July 22, 2014

E-Store Operations From Panasonic In India

Japanese consumer durables major Panasonic Corp. plans to start selling its products directly to its consumers through “E-Store” after the government in the budget allowed manufacturers to take up the online route. 

“Considering the increasing trend of online shopping, Panasonic will launch ‘Panasonic’s e-store’, where the company will showcase its range of products, in July 2014,” Panasonic India manging director Manish Sharma told this news agency. 

The e-store, which is scheduled to be launched this month, will showcase on the portal its products such as kitchen and home appliances, washing machines and air conditioners manufactured in India. The company will appoint a “re-seller” who is supposed to maintain the portal and take care of the distribution of products on behalf of Panasonic, he added.

 Welcoming finance minister Arun Jaitley’s announcement in the budget to allow manufacturers in India with foreign investments to sell directly to consumers online, Sharma said it would be beneficial for the manufacturing as well as the e-commerce industry. “It will give manufacturers a different channel to reach out to its customers, significantly helping retail e-commerce to grow,” he added. “We plan to showcase our entire range of products such as kitchen and home appliances, washing machines and air conditioners, which are manufactured at our plants located across India,” Sharma added. 

However, he declined to share expected sales projections which “Panasonic’s e-store” would contribute in the total earnings. Several factors such as large customer base, increasing penetration of Internet connectivity and growing popularity of online shopping across cities have fuelled the growth of online retailing in the country, he added.

 “...with the increased Internet penetration because of the use of PCs and smartphones in the country and growing popularity of the online shopping, Panasonic’s e-store will definitely contribute to the company’s growth,” Sharma added. 

On plans to sell products online, Sharma said: “It will definitely streamline the supply chain mechanism as it will allow the whole process to be automated, thus resulting in optimum utilisation of resources and cost efficiency.” He said it will also help the company expand its reach, speed and certainty of delivery to consumers. “Moreover, it will help us with new demand insights that can be mined and used for enhancing sales. Also, it will help us showcase our products which are manufactured in India,” Sharma said.

The Detriments of High-Rise Buildings

Inputs by Subhankar Mitra, Head – Strategic Consulting (West) JLL India

Internationally, a building that reaches or exceeds the height of 150 metres is considered a skyscraper. Until recently, Mumbai was the only Indian city with high-rise buildings. The financial capital continues to see the highest demand for skyscrapers, as the only option to grow there is vertically. It now seems that in the coming decade, Maximum City will receive an even more cohesive skyline, with a host of projects in the race to touch the sky being constructed. The demand for high-rise buildings is certainly growing, and other cities are catching up.

Mumbai continues to have the maximum number of tall buildings approved or under construction. Development of India One - the tallest in the country - has already begun in Maximum City. It spans 126 floors and stretches up to a height of 720 metres. Apart from this, Mumbai has more than 30 such super-tall buildings ranging between the heights of 150 metres to 450 metres either at the approval stage or already under construction.

New Delhi, the capital of India, has around a dozen of such buildings coming up. They range between heights of 150-300 metres. Kolkata too is catching up with 9 such residential buildings extending to the height of 245 metres either approved or under construction.

Ahmedabad too has about 13 tall buildings which are under construction and are ranging between 200 metres to 410 metres. Hyderabad and Bangalore too are witnessing some development in construction of tall buildings for residential-commercial purpose with 2 or 3 approved projects.
All in all, this amounts to around 60 skyscrapers. Developers see such edifices as a good way to attract potential buyers - high-rise buildings are a good gambit to differentiate their offerings from the rest of the pack. However, this coin has two sides – high-rise development has its own share of demerits, too:

Ø  Effect On Urban Wind

Rise in the elevation of a building increases the distance of the wind shadow and minimizes the air flow at the street level behind the building. Near high-rise buildings, the local wind speed is high even in summer. In addition, high-rise buildings tend to create a turbulent flow of the gradient wind as a result of increasing the roughness of the boundary layer surface.

Ø  Increased Air Pollution

In summers, local wind speeds near skyscrapers are very high and troublesome. The ventilation conditions in the urban spaces and major streets with high vehicular traffic have significant impact on the concentration of air pollutants at the street level. The high velocity and turbulent wind at the street level results in the mixing of the highly polluted low-level air with cleaner air flowing above the urban canopy.

Ø  Effect On Urban Radiation

High-rise buildings absorb direct and reflected solar radiation of surrounding low-rise buildings and convert it into heat via convection of long wave radiation. However, when buildings are of different heights, the walls of the higher buildings absorb part of the reflected and emitted radiation and block a portion of the sky, resulting in reduced solar exposure and long-wave emission from the roofs of the lower buildings.

Ø  Increased Urban Temperature

Size and density of the built-up areas affect urban areas temperatures. In the congested centres of large cities, temperature levels are generally higher than in the suburbs. The largest elevations of urban temperature occur during clear and still-air nights, also called ‘Urban Heat Island'. Excessive opacity of high-rise buildings in city centres results in concentrated heat generation by high-density land use (traffic, lighting, heat exhaust) and contributes to the creation of urban heat islands.

Ø  Effect On Night-Time Cooling

Nocturnal radiation is a major climatic factor that reduces atmospheric heat in urban areas located in hot, dry regions. Nocturnal radiation decreases when the density and the height of built-up urban masses increase. High-rise buildings store solar energy during the day time and release it slowly into low-speed local wind, especially at night. The vertical distance between cool winds above buildings roofs and the ground surface is long, and this results in decreased radiant cooling during the nights. Low-rise buildings that match trees heights of 12-15 meters, on the other hand, penetrate night-time ventilated cooling at the ground level and also store cool radiation through built-up urban areas.

Other Factors

* Tall buildings are colder in winter and hotter in summer than regular buildings, and therefore require more heating and more cooling. This is particularly true of modern glass towers. Thus, a lot of energy is required to keep these high rises functioning.
* Exterior cleaning and maintenance of a high-rise building can be very costly and dangerous. With global warming (which causes higher wind speeds) on the rise, insurance companies often refuse coverage to maintenance companies in charge of high-rise buildings at certain times of the year.
* High-rise buildings take longer to build, and due to rapid and heavy construction activity within the city, there is a heavy load on civic infrastructure.
* In-high rise buildings, the average construction cost per square foot is 20-25% higher if the building has more than 12 floors.
* Major modifications and/or renovations in a skyscraper are significantly more cost-intensive.
* If a new building has to be built on the same piece of land, the number of claimants is vastly higher.

When it comes to our largest cities, there is not much one can do about these factors – and indeed, they are accepted as a fact of life in a city like Mumbai, which must grow vertically if it is to grow at all. Unfortunately, the areas of our cities which are in the biggest need of high rise buildings are also the ones which offer the lowest scope for remedial infrastructure measures that could reduce the impact of skyscraper development.

DSCI Privacy Certification For Vodafone India

Data Security Council of India (DSCI), the focal body on data protection in India announced that it has certified Vodafone India Limited (VIL) – Delhi Circle,  one of the leading telecom  companies as a ‘DSCI Privacy Certified’ (DPC) organization. This certification follows VIL’s efforts in building a data privacy program and implementing privacy practices to fulfill its commitment towards privacy and protecting personal information of individuals. VIL is the first telecom organization in India to have been granted this certification by DSCI.

The assessment of data privacy program implementation at Vodafone-Delhi Circle, in line with the requirements of DSCI Privacy Framework (DPF) and DSCI Assessment Framework for Privacy (DAF-P), was conducted by DNV GL; a DSCI authorized Assessment Organization (AO). The certificate was awarded by Prof. Balakrishnan, Chairman, DSCI during a ceremony, organized on the sidelines of DSCI Best Practices Meet, on July 10, 2014.

On the occasion Kamlesh Bajaj, CEO, DSCI said “it is an important milestone in DSCI’s journey so far. We started with task of promoting the outsourcing industry, assuring the clients worldwide on the soundness of security and privacy practices. Through our public advocacy, thought leadership, capacity building and outreach and awareness work over the years, our efforts in building a robust culture on security and privacy protection are now paying off. Organizations from different industry verticals have adopted and implemented DSCI Privacy Framework (DPF), for building their privacy program and maturing their practices. Industry self-regulation is also one of the key recommendations of the Justice AP Shah Committee’s Report by ‘Group of Expert on Privacy’, on which the new draft of ‘Privacy Protection Bill’ is expected to be based. It is important the industry readies itself to address growing concerns on privacy globally. I congratulate ‘Vodafone India’ for undergoing assessment against our framework and becoming the first telecom organization to get DSCI Privacy Certified (DPC) Organization status.”

Nandakumar Shamanna, Head -Business Development, DNV GL Business Assurance, India said “The initiative taken by Vodafone as being one of the early birds to adopt good practices around ‘Privacy’ is appreciable. The framework developed by DSCI is comprehensive and enables businesses to adopt controls that are comparable to the best. DNV GL is glad to be associated as a leading independent assessor to verify implementation and thereby supporting the spread of building a strong security and privacy aware culture in this country. We believe various other sectors especially the B2C, like retail, banking, insurance and healthcare will come forward to adopt going forward.”

Burgess Cooper, VP & CTSO, Vodafone India said “Vodafone India’s Delhi circle has been awarded coveted DSCI Privacy Certification. The certificate benchmarks the privacy standards that Vodafone India complies with and also reiterates our focus on ‘Customer First’. The adoption of the DSCI framework has led to many business improvements including the reduction of high-risks, better coverage of privacy issues in our contracts, improved review of new business developments, standardized processes and detailed vendor audits. The certification benefits us by ensuring that appropriate processes and procedures for personal data management are defined, documented and embedded in our privacy practices.”

MANGO’s High Street Fashion Now On Myntra.com

One of the world's leading international fashion retailers MANGO, will extend its online presence on Myntra.com from August 2014. Through this association, Myntra.com has taken one step further in making international fashion accessible to shoppers in the country with the widest assortment of style from MANGO’s international collection.

Starting August 2014, Myntra.com will offer over 800 styles for women starting from as low as Rs 700 for basics going up to Rs 16,000 for limited edition collections. The women's range would include basic everyday wear as well as office staples such as shirts, suits and tops along with a huge variety of dresses as part of their evening wear collection. Additionally, ‘H.E. by MANGO', the range for men and MANGO Kids, will be available on the portal later this year. With this alliance, MANGO will leverage Myntra.com’s vast shopper base and reach across India to strengthen its presence in one of the fastest growing retail markets in the world.

Mango has been at the forefront of the fashion retail revolution and the brand has almost become synonymous with the term, ‘fast fashion’. Dressing up the modern, urban women for her daily needs has been MANGO’s winning formula.

Jaime Mur, MANGO Country Manager for India, South Korea, Japan and Sri Lanka: “It is a pleasure for MANGO to extend its footprint in India through MYNTRA.COM. We believe this long term partnership will bring both MANGO and MYNTRA to a new level in the always exciting India fashion market. Our strong ties will be beneficial not only for fashion conscious woman in India but also for men and kids soon since we are planning to bring our other lines H.E. by Mango and MANGO KIDS during 2014.”

Commenting on this partnership, Ashutosh Lawania, co-founder, Myntra said, “As India's leading e-commerce platform, it made perfect sense to add MANGO to our existing international brand portfolio which represents style, quality and high fashion. We are thrilled to partner with this global high street fashion brand which already has a loyal fan following in India."
He further added, "With this association, fashion conscious consumers will soon be able to access the widest collection of the latest Autumn/Winter’14 styles from MANGO right at their doorstep.”

Earlier this year, Myntra.com partnered with famous international brands like Desigual, 883 Police, Scotch & Soda, Supra, Jansport etc to offer exclusive collections to Myntra shoppers across the country. Today, Myntra also offers collections from world renowned designers like Anita Dongre, Rakesh Pratap Singh, Manish Arora and exclusive designer wear from Stylista.

MANGO is Spain’s second largest exporter of women’s fashion. Its concept is based on an alliance between a quality product, in accordance with the latest fashion trends, and an affordable price. The brand image is reinforced by its company-owned stores, which represent a calling card for the brand and create a dynamic image in accordance with the personality of its customers.

MANGO currently has a total of 2,700 stores in 107 countries worldwide.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Top Dell Executive To Head Mu Sigma India Operations

Mu Sigma, a leading pure-play providers of decision sciences and analytics solutions, announced today that Ganesh Lakshminarayanan has joined the company as Managing Director, India Operations. Ganesh will report into Dhiraj Rajaram, Mu Sigma’s Founder and CEO. Ganesh will work closely with the current leadership team to enhance the India delivery function and help the company continue to scale globally.

Commenting on the new appointment, Dhiraj said, “We must keep pace with the speed and scale of shift in the Big Data Space. Having known Ganesh for more than a decade, I am sure his rich experience in scaling operations will significantly help Mu Sigma in its journey of growth. We will continue to add leadership to achieve our endeavor to build a category defining company”

Ganesh joins Mu Sigma with more than 25 years of experience in the technology domain.  Prior to Mu Sigma, Ganesh was associated with Dell, heading its Asia Pacific and Japan sales operations. He is also credited with starting Dell’s India operations, and was instrumental in accelerating the company’s growth. 

R Chandrashekhar, President of NASSCOM said “We definitely see India well on its way to becoming the centre of excellence in the space of Big Data and analytics. There is increased convergence in this sector of man and machine, products and services. My best wishes to Mu Sigma for their journey towards building a unique ecosystem of people, processes and platforms.” 

“Mu Sigma’s approach of combining math, business, technology and behavioural science to help companies solve business problems has always interested me,” said Ganesh. “The frameworks and platforms used by Mu Sigma, which helped it grow from a disruptive start-up to an industry-leading provider of decision sciences, is exciting. I am thrilled to be part of this transformation and look forward to enabling the company to rise to even higher levels,” he added.

Mu Sigma also announced today that former Forrester Research executive Tom Pohlmann has joined the company as head of values and strategy. “These senior hires are key to helping Mu Sigma continue on its path of fast growth,” said Dhiraj.

Oracle Sees Finance, Healthcare & NGOs Adopt Cloud Marketplace

Oracle today announced that they are seeing widespread adoption of the Cloud Marketplace in India. Companies like Helpage India, Siemens, Kotak Bank, Reliance Finance and many more companies are now using the Oracle Cloud Marketplace.

The explosive growth of cloud, mobile, and social technologies is driving the need for organizations to gain faster and easier access to innovative and trusted business applications.  To address this need, Oracle launched the Oracle Cloud Marketplace at Oracle OpenWorld 2013.  Oracle is the first organization to have created a ground-breaking enterprise app store, the Oracle Cloud Marketplace. It is the corporate equivalent to consumer-oriented app stores such as Google Play and Apple App Store.

Oracle Cloud Marketplace features hundreds of business applications developed by Oracle partners, and enables Oracle Cloud customers to easily browse, evaluate, and license trusted business applications.  Oracle Cloud Marketplace also allows customers to find a wide range of systems integrators and services to meet their unique needs.

Featuring more than 100 business applications developed by Oracle partners, the Oracle Cloud Marketplace enables Oracle Cloud customers to easily browse, evaluate, and buy trusted business applications. It is a one-of-a-kind app store for enterprises.

Oracle is uniquely positioned to accelerate time to value and drive out complexity by designing, engineering, and testing our market leading software and hardware to work together, in the (public/private) cloud and in customer's (on-premise) datacenters.  Cloud Marketplace partners can leverage the industry’s most complete and best in class Cloud Stack at every layer, from Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Applications-as-a-Service (SaaS).

Partners also take advantage of Oracle’s flexible offerings to provide customer choice for their Cloud deployment models (Public, Private, Hybrid), allowing customers to leverage their investments in open industry standards without being locked into proprietary technologies and cloud stack.

The Oracle Cloud Marketplace is a great opportunity for partners and customers to connect on a single platform. Oracle partners can leverage the latest in cloud technologies to grow their businesses and it also enables them to quickly and easily develop, integrate, publish, and monetize their applications. With the Oracle Cloud Marketplace, Oracle’s extensive ecosystem of 400,000 customers, 25,000 partners, and 15 million community developers can foster and cultivate an environment of shared innovation.

According to Niraj Kaushik- Vice President, Applications, Oracle India, “During our conversations with multiple customers, we realized that enterprises were facing issues in managing applications and the process was getting increasingly complex. In order to get the applications to work effectively, it is critical that enterprises themselves get access to the right applications at the right time. This is at the heart of Oracle's Cloud Marketplace. Oracle Cloud Marketplace is designed and focused on meeting the needs of Businesses, and Business Users.”

He added, “Cloud computing is driving a significant part of Oracle’s product development plans and is a key part of Oracle’s strategy.  Oracle's long history of technology innovation, along with over seven years of relentless engineering and key strategic acquisitions, enables Oracle to now feature the most comprehensive cloud offerings in the world.  With our focus on simplifying IT for our customers, we have seen tremendous traction for our cloud solutions across sectors, while growing a complete cloud ecosystem.”

Friday, July 18, 2014

5th Edition Of SCPC Council Hosted By JDA Software

JDA Software Group, Inc., a leading supply chain planning and execution solutions provider hosted the prestigious event, the 5th Edition of the Supply Chain Practitioners Council (SCPC) in Bangalore.

The event focused on topics such as the supply chain reorganization journey, adaptive supply chain, designing profitable supply chains through differentiation, and challenges in grocery e-commerce. Practitioners from different companies collaborated hands-on on a case study to come up with innovative solutions and shared industry best practices.

The key presenters of the event were V. S. Sudhakar, Co-Founder & Executive Director, BigBasket.com, Vinay Krishna, Supply Chain Director, Cypress Semiconductor, Manish Ghosh, Vice President Global Consulting Partner - Manufacturing, JDA Software, Vijayakumar Seelam, Project Manager, SanDisk, Rohit Saksena, Senior Advisor, Supply Chain Analytics, Dell, and Narasimha Kamath, Product Director, JDA Software.

“SCPC is growing at a rapid pace. We started with the need to connect as supply chain professionals at an individual level.  In the last year, we have been able to extend this connection to an industry level. Of course, our long term vision is to take it to a level where we can influence policy making like other industry associations,” said Rohit Saksena, Senior Advisor, Supply Chain Analytics, Dell.

According to V. S. Sudhakar, Co-founder & Executive Director, BigBasket.com, “Burning cash is easy as VC’s are currently funding heavily in Indian e-commerce space, but one needs to take a balanced approach to make sure that the foundations are strong. A key differentiator in this journey would be supply chain.”

“Order lead time and on-time delivery metrics have significantly improved through supply chain simplification, dual-source manufacturing, and consolidation to turnkey sites,” said Vinay Krishna, Supply Chain Director, Cypress Semiconductor.

Manish Gosh, Vice President, Consulting Partner – Manufacturing, JDA Software, talked about how global companies are leveraging the differentiation and the fast evolving segmentation approach to create value added experience for their customers.

“Inventory postponement is one of the key strategies driving supply chain excellence at SanDisk.” said Vijayakumar Seelam, Project Manager, SanDisk.

Dr. Narasimha Kamath, Product Director, JDA Software, connected the dots by effectively packaging the learning through a case study participation and discussion to ensure the audience left with enriched supply chain knowledge.

SCPC’s first edition was hosted by Dell followed by Cisco, IIM Bangalore and Honeywell.  This edition  witnessed participation of 70 JDA associates and  over 100  senior supply chain experts from various companies like BigBasket.com, Britannia, Café Coffee Day, Cisco, Cypress, Dell, Honeywell , IIMB,  Krypt, Lennox International, Lenovo, Lifetech, Madura Fashions, Maxim, ON Semiconductor, Optum, PepsiCo, SanDisk, Schneider Electric, Sical Logistics, Target, Tata Steel, and Titan. Chainalytics, HCL, HP, IBM, MindTree, Oracle, Systematics, Tally Solutions, and TCS  were also present at this event.