Google, PWC to target Digital India projects

Online search giant Google has entered into a strategic partnership with consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers to go after the Digital India projects and large enterprise deals. With the Indian partnership, which is an extension of a global deal signed in October, Google wants to push itself into large e-governance projects and improve the sales for its cloud services in India. “We’re delighted to be able to combine PricewaterhouseCoopers’ rich client relationships and unparalleled industry knowledge with Google’s breadth of technology across cloud, applications and mobile,” Mohit Pande, country manager, Google for Work India, told ET. “Together, we’re looking forward to providing and building solutions to help Indian companies drive transformation with technology.” PwC has already built a 30-member team to look after such projects and is using its 1,800-people technology team in India to develop industry-specific solutions built on Google platforms. Google teams up with PricewaterhouseCoopers to target Digital India projects and large enterprise deals”This is a very large global partnership for us wherein we’ll not only offer our advisory services but also develop industry-specific solutions along with Google,” said Arnab Basu, partner, technology practice at PwC India. He said in order to ensure PwC is able to build its capabilities in offering Google services, the consulting firm itself is going ‘All Google’ by ensuring everyone in the company uses Google products.

splendor ismartBasu said PwC has already started building some of these solutions and additional applications for the small and medium businesses in India. “Apart from government and public sector companies, we would be building solutions for industry verticals such as financial services, retail, pharma and healthcare.” While Google has been fairly successful in reaching out to small and medium businesses in India, it still finds the going tough when it comes to cracking projects at large corporations where its competitor Microsoft has a stronghold. Microsoft, last week, announced a similar partnership with KPMG to include a global collaboration to deliver new suites of innovative solutions and services in data and analytics, cloud compliance and transformation and business solutions. Both Google and Microsoft have been aggressively trying to be a part of the Rs 1.13-lakh crore Digital India initiative that seeks to transform the country into a connected economy, attract investment in electronics manufacturing, and create millions of jobs and support trade. Google is already working with the government on several projects, including MyGov, the citizen engagement platform of the government of India, to launch a nationwide contest to build a mobile app. Analysts believe such partnerships are extremely important for companies selling cloud services as customers ask for a lot of industry specific customisation, which only partners can fulfil. “Previously, when there was no cloud, the expectation from the partner was, can you fill Google adwords? This is what used to happen 5-6 years back. All they would do is help you with Google email for enterprise,” said Karthik Ananth, Director at Zinnov Management Consulting.

– ET

+++

Share

Hero Moto-Corp’s Splendor iSmart is the most fuel-efficient in the world

In the fiercely competitive Indian twowheeler space where mileage matters the most, Hero Moto-Corp has developed a motorcycle that people associated with its testing say is the most fuel-efficient in the world and can disrupt the current local market dynamics. Splendor iSmart, the new generation of the nation’s most popular motorcycle, has been tested and certified by an Indian agency for commercial launch. According to the latest (March 2015) fuel efficiency (FE) values certified by the central government’s International Centre for Automotive Technology (iCAT), the motorcycle returned 102.5 kilometres to a litre of petrol.

splendor ismartFE values are obtained during a mandatory emission test. Under the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers guidelines, all two-wheeler manufacturers have to mandatorily declare these FE values. In actual riding conditions, the mileage of twowheelers may differ from those obtained under controlled conditions.Hero Moto-Corp, the world’s largest maker of motorcycles by volume, didn’t respond to an email seeking comment on the bike. People with knowledge of the plans said the launch could happen over the next few weeks. In the nation’s two-wheeler space,there are seven Hero MotoCorp models that find a place among the top 10 mostfuel-efficient two-wheelers. Other players on the list are Bajaj Auto and the TVS Motor. The new offering with record mileage could help Hero MotoCorp drive sales in a market where weak rural demand has been dragging motorcycle sales. Splendor iSmart has been developed in-house by Hero MotoCorp.

– ET

+++

Share

Mankind Pharma setting up Rs 100 crore facility in Rajasthan

mankind pharmaMankind Pharma is investing around Rs 100 crore to set up an active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) facility in Rajasthan, which is expected to go on stream by the end of the year. The Delhi-based firm, which manufactures various over-the-counter products including condoms, said the new facility would produce bulk APIs. “We are coming up with an API centre in Rajasthan which will be functional by end of this year and will give boost to the pharma industry by manufacturing affordable drugs in the country,” Mankind Pharma Chairman and Founder RC Juneja said in a statement. The facility is expected to be operational by the end of this year, he added. The company, which employs around 12,000 people, currently has 14 manufacturing units across the country. The company has presence in various therapeutic segments, including antibiotics and erectile dysfunction categories. It also markets various OTC brands including, Manforce Condoms and PregaNews.

– ET

+++

Share

Carlson Rezidor to add over 50 hotels in India in 5 years

On an ambitious expansion spree, global hospitality major Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group plans to have over 170 hotels across the country within 5 years under its various brands, including Radisson and Park Inn. The company has set a target of having a hotel in every major city in India with a landmark property in every state capital. “We plan to extend the number of our hotels in India to over 170 within next five years. We currently have 117 Carlson Rezidor hotels in operation and under development across 45 cities in India,” Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group South Asia Chief Executive Officer Raj Rana told PTI. The company has established a nationwide presence that has been built upon a deep understanding of this key market and it will further extend it’s brands and geographic presence, he added. Commenting on the company’s ambition in India, Rana said: “We intend to have a hotel in every major city in India with landmark hotels in every state capital.”

carlson rezidorThe hospitality chain plans to continue to work with existing strategic partners as well as forge new partnerships to develop scalable opportunities for growth, Carlson Rezidor said, adding that it intends to grow its India platform by way of management, selective franchising and conversions. “For the rest of 2015, Carlson Rezidor expects to open eight to nine hotels and sign 12-15 new hotels in cities throughout India,” it added. The company’s current brand portfolio in India includes brands such as Radisson Blu, Radisson, Park Plaza, Park Inn by Radisson and Country Inns & Suites By Carlson brands. As part of its growth strategy in India, Carlson Rezidor is broadening its brand presence with the introduction of Radisson Red and Quorvus Collection, the company said in a statement. While Radisson Red is an upscale lifestyle elect brand Quorvus Collection is a luxury brand. Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group’s current portfolio includes more than 1,350 hotels in operation and under development with a footprint spanning over 105 countries and territories. It owns global brands such as Quorvus Collection, Radisson Blu, Radisson, Radisson Red, Park Plaza, Park Inn by Radisson and Country Inns & Suites By Carlson.

– ET

+++

Share

Foodpanda raises $110 million from Rocket Internet

Online food delivery marketplace Foodpanda on Thursday announced raising $110 million in a fresh round of funding.
The latest fund infusion witnessed participation from the existing investor, Rocket Internet AG, and new investors. The company did not disclose the new investors and the amount infused by them. With this, the total infusion of cash in the company has reached $200 million since its launch in 2012. Foodpanda operates in 40 countries across five continents. The development comes a day after Rocket Internet announced that India was the priority market in Asia. Foodpanda, which has been active in tapping the inorganic growth route, said it had planned to invest in products and technology. The company said it had aspired to become the “most convenient and most user-friendly” way of ordering food delivery or takeaways. “Over the last couple of months, we have become the leading online food delivery marketplace across the most-promising and fastest-growing emerging markets,” said Ralf Wenzel, co-founder and chief executive of Foodpanda Group. “The new funding allows us to focus on user experience and customer service, with the aim of disrupting the way people order food, by establishing a real alternative to pizza flyers and phone calls.” The company allows users to order food through its mobile app or website. For restaurants, it helps increase delivery sales through online and mobile platforms and provides these technology and analytics. The company has more than 45,000 restaurant partners globally and claims to be a market leader in 32 countries.

rocket internet“We have seen excellent growth over the past year attracting new users from all corners of the country,” said Rohit Chadda, managing director and co-founder of Foodpanda.in. “This round of funding will allow us to scale up and strengthen the Foodpanda brand, he added. Foodpanda, in which Rocket Internet holds a 52 per cent stake (recently increased by about two per cent), acquired Just Eat India. This was preceded by an acquisition of Tasty Khana last November. Rocket Internet had incubated Foodpanda.com in Berlin in May 2012 as a global online food ordering marketplace. Foodpanda’s Indian entity, Foodpanda.in, was started in May 2012 and co-founded by Rohit Chadda.
Foodpanda is present in 12 out of 20 largest cities in the world, including Kolkata, Mumbai and Delhi. Online food delivery is being seen as a major growth avenue for startups. Zomato is looking to roll out its food delivery service in a couple of weeks while Mumbai-based TinyOwl is rolling out services in Indian cities with Rs 100 crore in pocket.

– Business Standard

+++

Share