IESA WINWire Apr 25 - May 01, 2015
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Global Inhouse Centres of MNCs in India have transformed into key innovation centres: Nasscom
Source: The Times of India; April 25, 2015

Information technology industry body National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) said that Global in-house Centres (GICs) of global companies in India have transformed from cost-arbitrage focussed entities into a key innovation centre for their global enterprises. Speaking on the side lines of the fifth edition of Nasscom's two-day GIC Conclave in the city, R Chandrashekhar, president of Nasscom said that MNCs are leveraging their GICs to enable digital transformation by their engagement with local startup ecosystem through accelerator programs. "With GICs rapidly maturing and moving up the value chain, they are all set to playing a pioneering role in providing sustained competitive advantage to their global enterprises," Chandrashekhar said. He added that expanding in Tier 2 and 3 locations is one of the key priorities of GICs for the coming fiscal.

Bengal government plans smart cities
Source: Business Standard; April 25, 2015

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee's decision to rename six district towns across the state is part of state government's plan to set up smart cities there. According to officials, the state government has been mulling to set up smart cities across the state for a while and during a discussion on this Banerjee came up with renaming six district towns, which she plans to develop as smart cities. "It would wrong to say it as a mere renaming exercise. This plan includes both converting some existing townships into smart cities and developing some smart cities from scratch," said an official. According to Mamata Banerjee's plan, Kalyani township in the Nadia district, which was during the time of Bidhan Chandra Roy's chief ministership would be rechristened as Samridhi after being developed as smart cities. Similarly, Siliguri in Darjeeling district too will be turned into smart city and would be renamed as Teesta, a major river in North Bengal. Mamata has decided to rename Bolpur in Burbhum district after Gitabitan, a popular compilation of songs of Rabindranath Tagore.

Bangalore-based IT firm signed MoU with Odisha to set up a Semiconductor Lab in Bhubaneswar
Source: Orissadiary; April 26, 2015

A Bangalore-based IT company on Friday signed an MoU with Odisha government to set up a Semiconductor Characterization Lab in Bhubaneswar. The agreement was signed between the STPI (Software Technology Park of India), Director, Bhubaneswar branch Manas Panda and Tessolve Semiconductor Private Ltd’s President V Veerappan in the presence of IT Minister Pranab Prakash Das and Secretary Pradeep Kumar Jena. International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) will provide infrastructure facilities and other necessary requirements for setting up of the unit. The STPI, Bhubaneswar would procure the equipment required for the laboratory. The STPI and Odisha government would bear Rs 7 crore of Rs 7.98 crore required for the project on 50:50 proportions. Besides, Tessolve would maintain and operate the laboratory. The proposed laboratory will have software and hardware incubation centres, data centre for the use of IT industries.

Make in India: Will take steps to encourage private players in defence sector, says Manohar Parrikar
Source: The Economic Times; April 26, 2015

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has said the ministry would be taking pro-active measures to encourage private players in defence sector in tune with the Prime Minister's vision of " Make in India". "Government is absolutely committed to working on 'Make In India' to ensure employment opportunities and creating growth story of India with a combined effort with the industry," he said while addressing a seminar on "Make in India for Defence" organised by Confederation of Indian Indian Industry (CII) here yesterday. The seminar was focused on the need of indigenisation and evolving models to address critical areas through defence cooperation. Parrikar said honest efforts were being made to fulfil Prime Minister's vision of 'Make in India'. He said the new Land Acquisition Bill is aimed at boosting development in the country. Parrikar also attended a book release function at Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics in the city.

LED market bullish on high adoption ratio
Source: Business Standard; April 26, 2015

The Light Emitting Diode (LED) industry across the country is bullish on growth prospects on back of high adoption ratio from consumers. The industry is expecting tremendous growth in the coming five years as demand for commercial use of LEDs is growing. The current monthly output of LEDs across the country is approximately five million pieces. The current market size of LED lights business is around Rs 2,500 crore across the country and this is expected to grow at 45 per cent over the next two years. "There is a strong push towards sustainable solutions in lighting especially in India. The lighting industry is expecting healthy growth in LED segment in 2015-16 on back of this push towards adoption of sustainable lighting solutions," said Arun Gupta, managing director, NTL Group. Industry players believe that government's domestic efficient lighting programme is a good initiative which will propel consumers to adopt LED bulbs early. As on date, there is no proposal to make it mandatory. "The lighting companies have also been working to upgrade technology, which is again playing a critical role in bringing down the production cost of LED lights.

HC appoints Ernst & Young India as valuer for Nokia's Chennai plant
Source: The Economic Times; April 27, 2015

The Delhi High Court today appointed Ernst & Young India Pvt Ltd as valuer for Nokia India's Chennai mobile making plant, frozen over an alleged Rs 10,000 crore tax dispute with the Income Tax department.

A bench of justices Badar Durrez Ahmed and Sanjeev Sachdeva appointed the multinational professional service firm after it was informed by the Income Tax department that Nokia had written a letter to the Union revenue secretary informing him of appointing the valuer for its Chennai plant.

"The valuation of the assets will be done by Ernst & Young India Pvt Ltd. Counsel for Income Tax department says he has no objection to the valuer appointed by the said company. The said valuation should be done in two months. Put it for further hearing on September 7," the bench said.

Micromax May Sell 25% Stake to Chinese Company
Source: IT Voice; April 27, 2015

Micromax, India’s largest home-grown manufacturer of mobile phones, is close to selling a 25% stake to a consortium led by Ant Financial Services Group, China’s leading online financial services company that owns Alipay, valuing India’s No. 2 handset maker at around $4-5 billion (approximately Rs 24,000-30,000 crore), five people familiar with the matter said.

Alipay, China’s top online payment solution company and part of the Alibaba Group, is bringing in two to three partners, said one of the people cited. “More partners will give divergence of views and comfort to the lead investor,” this person said. The proposed deal would see both infusion of capital and exits, partial or total, by existing investors, said the people quoted earlier. An exit will give existing investors significant returns on their investments.

Applied Materials, Tokyo Electron Cancel Merger Plan
Source: Wall Street Journal‎; April 27, 2015

The past two years brought plenty of bold—and successful—attempts by companies to swallow major competitors, but Monday’s collapse of a $29 billion deal in the semiconductor industry is the latest signal that U.S. antitrust enforcers remain on the lookout for risks of market concentration.

Applied Materials Inc. of the U.S. and Tokyo Electron Ltd. of Japan abandoned a merger that would have created a giant supplier of equipment used by chip makers, citing Justice Department opposition.

“Based on the DOJ’s position, Applied and Tokyo Electron determined together that there’s no realistic prospect for the completion of the merger,” Gary Dickerson, Applied Materials’ chief executive, said during a conference call.

The failed deal, pending since September 2013, comes just days after Comcast Corp. walked away from its planned acquisition of Time Warner Cable Inc. because of stiff resistance from the Justice Department and the Federal Communications Commission.

Smartphones to dominate consumer electronics in 2015
Source: India Today; April 27, 2015

The smartphone market is expanding aggressively. We frequently get to hear new manufacturers entering the industry and with the rising competition, companies are forced to deliver optimum quality on the lowest possible profit margin. This directly results in an increase in smartphone sales.

According to a global research firm, GfK, the declining prices will be the reason behind the spike in smartphone demands.

According to a report from FierceWireless, Jürgen Boyny, global director of consumer electronics for GfK Retail and Technology, predicted that the smartphone industry will grow by 1.5 per cent in 2015. The current evaluation is $846.07 billion in 2014 and is predicted to end at $859.12 billion in 2015. "Smartphones are still a major driver of the digital market," Boyny said. "Prices are dropping."

Maharashtra teams up with Israel on smart cities
Source: The Hindu; April 28, 2015

Smart cities in Maharashtra could very well end up looking as “smart” as Tel Aviv, the capital of Israel. In a key stride in collaboration between the State and Israel, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai on Monday agreed to cooperate in building smart cities. After the discussions held on Smart City partnership, the two parties – the Maharashtra government and the Municipality of Tel Aviv -- agreed to discuss common challenges faced by modern cities and possible solutions. They would also explore the possibility of using Indian IT capabilities to increase efficiency of smart urban solutions. On a four-day visit to the country, Mr. Fadnavis was briefed on the concept and implementation of the Smart City project in Tel Aviv, which was adjudged as the “World’s Smartest City” at the Smart City Expo World Congress held in 2014. Mr. Fadnavis held discussions with Mr. Huldai, besides meeting other experts and officials. Maharashtra “aspires to create sustainable and friendly urban spaces that integrate the use of technology, social media, community participation and e-governance to build smart cities of Maharashtra like Nagpur, Mumbai, Amravati, Aurangabad and Nashik to a global standard,” the joint statement said.

ECIL, ISRO tie up to reduce import of critical systems
Source: Business Standard; April 28, 2015

Taking a cue from the Centre’s ‘Make In India’ initiative, defence electronics supplier Electronics Corporation of India (ECIL) and space major Isro have decided to intensify collaboration for the production of critical systems that find application in the launch of latter’s satellites.

Stating this, MYS Prasad, director of Isro’s SHAR Sriharikota, today said both the organisations had “set a goal for reducing the dependency on imports in the area of critical systems”, in particular the ground systems deployed for launching satellites, initially.

He was present here to receive the ECIL-manufactured and indigenously-developed programmable logic controller-based supervisory control and data acquisition system (Scada), to be deployed at the Isro Sriharikota High Altitude Range (SHAR).

LG Electronics says 1Q profit sinks nearly 60 percent
Source: Yahoo India News‎; April 29, 2015

LG Electronics Inc. said Wednesday its quarterly profit plunged 59 percent as losses from TVs offset a modest improvement in its smartphone business.

The Korean company said its January-March net profit fell to 38.4 billion won ($36 million) from 92.6 billion won a year earlier. Sales were flat at 14 trillion won while operating profit slumped 37 percent to 305 billion won.

Its mainstay TV business lost money as weak currencies in emerging markets sapped demand and the strong U.S. dollar increased the cost of components.

LG's chief financial officer Jung Do-hyun estimated that weak emerging market currencies and the euro reduced the company's operating profit by 600 billion won.

Samsung's profit sinks 39% as mobile profit shrinks
Source: Times of India‎; April 29, 2015

Samsung Electronics Co. said its first-quarter net income has plunged 39% as the smartphone business saw its profit shrink to less than half from a year earlier.

The company reported Wednesday that its January-March income was 4.63 trillion won ($4.35 billion), compared with 7.49 trillion won one year earlier.

That was lower than analysts' consensus of 4.97 trillion won, according to financial data provider Factset.

Sales fell 12% from a year earlier to 47.12 trillion won while operating income dropped 30% to 5.98 trillion won, in line with Samsung's earnings preview earlier this month.

The wider-than-expected drop in net profit was due to a big profit plunge in Samsung's mobile business. The maker of Galaxy smartphones said its mobile division generated 2.74 trillion won in quarterly profit, compared with 6.43 trillion won a year earlier.

50 crore internet connections by 2018: Ravi Shankar Prasad
Source: The Economic Times; April 29, 2015

The government is working towards pulling off a goal of 50 crore internet connections by 2018, Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said today.

"Last year, Internet service providers told me that we have got 30 crore Internet connections in India... my plan is by 2018, to make 50 crore Internet connections in India, that's what we are working for," Prasad said at an event here.

Arrow Electronics Joins Open-Source Software Pioneer Linaro To Help Bring Innovative New Boards To Market
Source: The EFYTimes ; April 30, 2015

Arrow Electronics, Inc. (NYSE:ARW) today announced that it has joined Linaro Ltd., the not-for-profit engineering organization that consolidates and optimizes open-source software for ARM applications. Arrow is the first Linaro collaborator with both hardware-design and distribution capabilities.

Compiled by IESA Research

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