IESA WINWire May 02 - May 08, 2015
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Karnataka Government Mulls Finishing School for Engineering Graduates
Source: The New Indian Express; May 2, 2015

The plight of engineering graduates who fail to get selected in campus interviews has forced the state government to come to their rescue. Talks are on to set up a skills development institute in association with global IT major Hewlett-Packard to improve the employability of such students, especially from the computer science, information technology, telecommunications and electronics streams. The proposal, which was earlier mooted by the Higher Education Department, has now been taken up by the Department of IT/BT after huge demand from IT and computer science engineering students. The proposal is being implemented by the state-owned Karnataka State Electronics Development Corporation (Keonics). Keonics chairman U B Venkatesh told Express, “Talks are on with Hewlett Packard for setting up a skills development institute in Bengaluru to improve technical, English communication and other abilities. The institute will mainly cater to final-year students and fresh graduates in IT and electronics-related streams with short-term courses of eight to 10 weeks with a reasonable fee.”

Bengaluru likely to get smart suburb next month
Source: Times of India; May 3, 2015

Soon, if you drive to Electronics City, you won't have to manually search for a parking space. At the click of a button on the mobile phone, you will be directed to a vacant parking slot.

For, the IT hub, which is spread over 750 acres and houses 185 companies, is slowly transforming into a smart city. And if everything goes according to plan, quite a few features of the smart city will be unveiled by June end, sources say. That includes smart CCTV surveillance, smart water management (leak detection), waste management and community messaging. Even street lights will turn smart, as there will be no need to operate them manually.

The project is jointly implemented being by the Electronics City Industries Association (ELCIA) and IT giant CISCO. The project will be Asia's first end-to-end (Internet of Things-IoT) Innovation Hub in Bengaluru.

Electronics Manufacturing Moves to the Cloud
Source:; May 4, 2015

“We focus on what we can offer that nobody else can,” explains Firstronic CEO John Sammut. “Our differentiators have become better shop floor controls, advanced technology, speed-to-market and flexibility.” Based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Firstronic makes electronic components for automotive, industrial and medical industry customers. From the LED lighting in your car to automated utility meters, the company develops solutions for dozens of OEMs. Building a company designed to compete on speed and customer collaboration, rather than purely on cost, required a different approach to automation. The Cloud as a Catalyst for Growth Catalyzed by the need to shift off a legacy SAP solution, and preparing the company for faster growth, Firstronic looked to the cloud as an option both for shop floor automation and ERP. “Our value proposition for customers centers on quality, collaboration and our ability to respond quickly,” Sammut continued. “We wanted technology that could support our business priorities.” The company set out an aggressive, five-month plan to go live on the Plex Manufacturing Cloud, which encompasses both manufacturing execution capabilities and back office administration. 

‘We may start some kind of collaborative work with Indian companies and institutions.’
Source: Autocar Professional; May 4, 2015

We see India as very important market for our products. On the other side, one needs to also mention that the market requirements in India have not matured up to the mark of creating demand for our high-end products, particularly in the consumer electronics area. The automotive segment is growing and we see the potential for our products in the automotive in the coming years. We have already established our sales offices in key cities like Bangalore, Chennai and New Delhi. Currently our Indian operations function under our Singapore subsidiary. Our products relating to the automotive industry in India are still used in the dashboard type of products like car audio and navigation systems. Of course, we have products like gyrosensor that can be used in various components pertaining to vehicle safety applications like Electronic Stability Control (ESC). But the demand for this kind of advance electronic products in India is less compared to Tier 1 markets in Japan and European countries. I believe the Indian automotive industry is growing at a faster pace at present. So it will require lot of new technologies that in turn will create demand for high-end electronic products in the automotive sector.

Defence capex of Rs 15.5 lakh crore to lift local companies
Source: Business Standard; May 5, 2015

The world's largest weapons importer, India, has mandated original equipment makers (OEMs) to source at least 30 per cent of their inputs locally. Though localisation efforts have seen little success, this time, many things are falling in place. Madhukar V Kotwal, president of heavy engineering at Larsen & Toubro (L&T), says: "While the government's thrust on domestic procurement is visible, for it to translate into stable ordering, the government will have to prioritise programmes and fund those. Projects have accumulated through the years, but for these to become opportunities for Indian companies, they have to be funded. That depends on how the government prioritises them." Many, however, believe favourable regulatory changes will accelerate investment flow into the sector. Citi Research says defence manufacturing in India is at an inflection point, with a capital expenditure opportunity of $245 billion (Rs 15,57,819 crore) through the next decade. Key regulatory changes in the sector are expected to see increased sourcing of equipment from Indian companies and kick-start investment in the manufacturing, heavy engineering and design segments.

Telecom Technologies: Advanced Communication Networks Expands In India
Source: EFY Times; May 5, 2015

As mobility-enabling technology improved, telecommunication technology has become smarter in years and its growing day by day. Networks will converge, devices will become wearable, and context-aware applications will act spontaneously. According to International Data Corp. (IDC), India is the fastest growing market in Asia Pacific region with a quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) growth of 27 per cent in the third quarter of 2014. Telecom technology is changing our lives in ways we did not envision. Today, efficient packet switched networks carry media packets (voice, data, and video) to intelligent mobile devices that users carry everywhere. Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) reported 955 million mobile phone subscribers in the country by the end of March 2015. Mobile devices accounted for 16 per cent and telecom infrastructure for nine per cent of the global telecom market.

Rajasthan govt promotes state as investment destination
Source: Business Standard; May 5, 2015

Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje today met business leaders here as part of the state's efforts to attract investment in various sectors such as farm and food processing, auto and engineering. "We want to attract industrial investments which will bring about a transformation in the economic landscape of the state," Raje said at a two-day investor meet jointly organised by the Rajasthan government and industry body CII. She said Rajasthan has initiated policy reforms, regulatory interventions and investment facilitation measures to enhance the ease of doing business in the state. The state has already implemented 64 of the 89 measures recommended by the Centre for enhancement of Ease of Doing Business (EoDB), she added. Rajasthan Minister for Public Health and Engineering Kiran Maheshwari said the state has got positive response from the industry leaders and is expecting around Rs 35,000 crore investment in the state. "However, we can give the exact figure only after the agreements are signed," she added. She said the state has identified 12 core sectors to attract investments like agro and food processing, auto and engineering, renewable energy, defense sub-systems manufacturing and electronics system design and manufacturing (ESDM), IT, micro small and medium enterprises (MSME), infrastructure, textiles, health care and tourism.

Cisco CEO John Chambers steps down
Source: Times of India; May 5, 2015

Cisco Systems Inc chief executive John Chambers will step down in July after 20 years at the helm of the network equipment maker, a symbol of the stock boom 15 years ago now struggling to boost its bottom line in the era of cloud computing.

Company veteran Chuck Robbins, 49, will take over as CEO. The 65-year-old Chambers, one of the longest-serving leaders of a Silicon Valley company and also company chairman, will become executive chairman, the company said on Monday.

Wall Street analysts said a change was expected and could signal a refocusing of Cisco, which acquired dozens of companies under Chambers but has failed to make great headway outside its core networking business.

Lalit Bhasin: For 'Make in India', first 'Innovate in India'
Source: Business Standard; May 6, 2015

Undoubtedly, India has all the essential elements for a successful 'Make in India' programme - a large young and skilled workforce, an enabling economic environment and competitive wages. Under the policies of the current government, India's manufacturing capacity for innovation and infrastructure is poised for phenomenal growth.

There is empirical evidence positively linking patents, innovation, productivity and investment. To realise the twin dreams of 'Innovate in India' and 'Make in India', the government needs to build a competitive, thriving environment by prioritising scientific research with a strong intellectual property (IP) system. According to a recent article published in Business Standard, according to the 2015 IP index by US Chamber of Commerce's Global Intellectual Property Center (GIPC), India continues to languish at the bottom - 29th out of 30 countries. According to GIPC, economies with robust and higher IP protection have 50 per cent more innovative output and are 40 per cent more likely to invest in research and development.

NXP, Qualcomm to bring mobile payment to Android phones
Source: EET India; May 6, 2015

NXP Semiconductors N.V., who worked with Apple on Apple Pay, has just picked up Qualcomm as its mobile chip partner. The two companies announced Tuesday (May 5) they will work together to bring NXP's market-proven NFC and secure element technology onto Qualcomm's Snapdragon platform. The collaboration between the two will go beyond mobile payment applications for smartphones. They plan to develop new reference designs to expand the reach of NFC into other applications—including "Wearables, Internet of Things/Everything, automotive," explained Jeff Fonseca, regional sales director, Americas NXP. The partnership deal is not exclusive to Qualcomm, according to NXP. The two companies, however, declined to elaborate on the deal—including its financial terms.

Infosys plans to invest Rs 2000 crore: Reports
Source: Indiainfoline; May 6, 2015

Infosys is planning to expand its operations in Bengaluru, according to reports.

A report said that the company is planing to invest about Rs 2,000 crore and will be adding about 21,500 seats at the Electronics City software hub.

Infosys employed 1.76 lakh people, of whom 34,431 were in Bengaluru and 37,115 in Pune. The company is targeting $20 bn in revenue by 2020.

Make in India: Government gives shape to five industrial corridors
Source: The Economic Times; May 6, 2015

The government has conceptualised five industrial and economic corridors and all are at different stages of implementation, Parliament was informed today. The corridors are - Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC); Bengaluru- Mumbai Economic Corridor (BMEC); Chennai-Bengaluru Industrial Corridor (CBIC); Visakhapatnam-Chennai Industrial Corridor (VCIC) and Amritsar-Kolkata Industrial Corridor (AKIC). " BMEC, VCIC and AKIC are in the initial stages of implementation whereas master planning for all the three nodes in CBIC and all nodes except for 'Dadri Noida Ghaziabad' investment region under DMIC have been completed," Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.

Government plan to woo investment in electronics
Source: The Hindu; May 7, 2015

The government is rolling out an ambitious programme to make Kerala a preferred destination for investment in electronics systems design and manufacture (ESDM) by 2020. The proposal, a major component of the Kerala Industrial and Commercial Policy (Amended)-2015 cleared by the State Cabinet on Wednesday, seeks to set up manufacturing units for the electronics industry in Thiruvananthapuram, Alappuzha, and Kannur by providing capital subsidy. The policy includes plans to develop Industrial Development Zones (IDZ) around the logistics hubs of Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Kozhikode and the upcoming international airport in Kannur for manufacturing industries, agro-based industries, textiles, gems and jewellery. It also proposes the establishment of a Knowledge City on the Technocity campus in Thiruvananthapuram to promote knowledge-based industries on public private partnership (PPP) mode.

Samsung begins construction of $14.3 billion chip plant
Source: Times of India; May 7, 2015

Samsung kicked off construction of a new chip plant to help fuel growth as smartphone sales slow, saying it would invest 15.6 trillion won ($14.3 billion) until production begins in 2017.

The South Korean electronics giant, which has seen a surge in demand for chips, broke ground on the new plant in the city of Pyeongtaek, 70 kilometres (44 miles) south of Seoul.

Production at the 2.89 million square-meter plant will begin in the latter half of 2017, Samsung said in a statement.

The investment of $14.3 billion is the largest amount the firm has ever committed to a single plant, it added.

"The Pyeongtaek semiconductor plant will play a key role in strengthening our leadership in mobile and server (chip) market where demand has soared recently, and secure a leading position (in) the next-generation Internet of Things market," it said.

Sale of AC, refrigerators decline 20% and 10% respectively due to unseasonal rains
Source: Economic Times; May 7, 2015

Sales of air-conditioners and refrigerators took a beating in April due to unseasonal rains across the country, declining 20% and 10%, respectively, from a year earlier. The drop caused inventory to pile up at retailers and forced manufacturers to slow down production.

While sales of cooling appliances start picking up from March in the south, peak season during April and May accounts for more than 50% of annual sales. Several retailers are now offering deals on air-conditioners and refrigerators, including complimentary installation and buyback schemes.

"Rains have played spoilsport in April across the country with large inventory pumped into trade remaining unsold," said Whirlpool of India vice-president (corporate affairs and strategy) Shantanu DasGupta. "The impact is more on air-conditioners since it's a product which consumers tend to purchase when they have sleepless nights. They are yet to feel that." Godrej Appliances business head and executive vice-president Kamal Nandi said the industry has started to cut down on production to match the requirement of the market.

Compiled by IESA Research

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