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  IESA WINWire Dec 31, 2016 - Jan 06, 2017 for Subscription click here  
11th Anniversary

PoS’ domestic manufacturing needs push: CMAI to Modi
Source: Voice and Data; December 31, 2016

Post demonetization, a lot of transformation in Indian Business has been taking place. One of the most notable changes the common public has adopted pertains to shifting towards cashless economy through digital payment systems. Digital payments have jumped a whopping 300 per cent in the last one month itself. All this has created the sudden requirement of POS machines. India needs to add 20 lakhs new PoS (point of sale) machines in quick time to give push to cashless transactions. In this scenario, data safety and e-frauds need to be addressed by the Government as e-payments and cashless transactions continue to rise in India.

In this backdrop, CMAI, while supporting Prime Minister’s push for a cashless economy that will move India to advanced economy and corruption free India, has urged the Government to put in place a robust system to tackle e-frauds and give a push to domestic manufacturing of PoS machines and its software development under the Make in India programme.

Extending full support and cooperation to making Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s push to digital payment a success, CMAI President Prof. N.K. Goyal, who is also TEMA’s Chairman Emeritus, said the Government of India should immediately come out with a policy specifically for manufacturing of PoS and development of its software so that all safety of all transactions in ensured.

National Workshop to impart Design Expertise to MSME manufacturing sector
Source: KNN India; December 31, 2016

Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), Kalraj Mishra, inaugurated the National Workshop on Design Clinic Scheme under National Manufacturing Competitiveness Program on Thursday in New Delhi.

The scheme will be implemented under the Office of the Development Commissioner, Ministry of MSME in association with the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, India.

A National Workshop for Design Clinic scheme was held with potential stakeholders to make MSMEs competitive in the national and international arena. This National Workshop has helped Ministry of MSME and National Institute of Design to share the success and explore future directions for a sustained growth of the MSME Sector, according to the reports.

During the course of program it was discussed that the MSME sector plays a significant role to the country’s GDP, total industrial production and employment generation. Continued manufacturing competitiveness of MSME sector is the key to India’s future growth. Manufacturing Competitiveness is concerned with productivity and sustaining productivity is dependent on the ability of industry to produce new, desirable, quality products that sustain the changing and demanding needs of the user and marketplace.

Design Clinic Scheme for MSMEs under the National Manufacturing Competitiveness Programme (NMCP), Ministry of MSME, aims to provide design initiative for improvements in products, processes, communication, ergonomics, packaging and many other system level activities through design support and interventions. Recently the scheme has been up scaled with revised budgets, commitments and targets.

Gionee firm on manufacturing plans post demonetization
Source: India Today; January 1, 2017

Handset maker Gionee today said it is firm on its plans manufacturing mobile phones in India despite disruptions due to demonetisation.

"Yes of course, we are committed to Make in India and planning to set up a manufacturing unit spread across 50 acres in Faridabad at a cost of Rs 500 crore," Gionee India CEO and Country Head Arvind Vohra told PTI when asked about plans of manufacturing handsets in India post demonetisation.

"The capacity of the unit will be 30 million units and it should be operational in about two years," he said.

"With demonetisation, the market had undoubtedly slowed down, but is getting back on track with the cash crunch situation easing. Sales declined 20 per cent in the first two to three days, but with partial recovery now the decline is 8-10 per cent," he said.

In long-term, Gionee plans not to only tap the growing demand in India as well as act as an export hub to serve markets like Africa and South East Asia, the company said.

At present, about 60 per cent of Gionees devices sold in India are manufactured locally at facilities run by Foxconn (Tamil Nadu) and Dixon (Noida) of Dixon Technologies.

To tackle the after-effects of demonetisation, Gionee believed distributors were needed to increase the credit cycle to retailers and both retailers and brands were required to give more lucrative offers to the cash-hit consumers.

Apple unlikely to get special concessions for making in India
Source: Livemint; January 3, 2017

Apple Inc. is unlikely to receive any special concession from the Indian government to manufacture its iPhones in the country. Offering the Cupertino, US-based company the tax incentives it has sought would mean discriminating against other phone manufacturers that have already set up plants in India, a commerce ministry official said on condition of anonymity.

“Apple is asking for concessions that others are not asking. We have to follow the rule book. Otherwise, anybody can stand up and say why only Apple and why not others,” the official added.

An Apple spokesperson did not respond to emailed queries.

The official said Apple has sought tax concessions, a conducive ecosystem and exemption from local procurement norms.

The Times of India reported on 30 December that Apple plans to make iPhones for the Indian market in Bengaluru through Wistron, a Taiwanese electronic manufacturer that is setting up a facility in Peenya, the city’s industrial hub.

The official cited above said Apple was looking for an exit from China and should set up manufacturing units in India without seeking concessions in return.

This is Apple’s second bid to enter India after failing to get a waiver in local sourcing norms for opening branded stores in India.

Last year, the government relaxed rules governing foreign investment in so-called single brand retail for companies bringing what it called “state-of-the-art and cutting-edge” technology.

Telangana, Andhra Pradesh top in filing patents
Source: Times of India; January 3, 2017

When it comes to filing patents, the twin states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are way ahead of competition, but experts say most of inventions have little or no commercial value.

Recent statistics by Intellectual Property India Report, 2015, show Andhra Pradesh with 532 applications and Telangana with 459, hogging the ninth and tenth positions respectively in the national chart. This an increase of 25% in patent applications from the previous year.

Across India, 12,071 domestic patent applications were filed. Electrical and electronics, chemical engineering and bio-technology are some sectors that have highest patent applications and they also account for highest dormant ones. Few patents have been filed in chemical, mechanical and electrical engineering. This can be attributed to students and universities rushing for top honours.

However, the report puts the number of patents (both Indian and foreign) at 43,256, but functional patents were as low as 7,900. Experts also quote the study by National Research Development Centre (UK) which show only 35% patents have commercial utility.

"Patents and their commercial viability cannot be viewed in singular direction as there are many influencing factors like the sector in which patents are being filed and changing market conditions after applications are received. But it's always better to scientifically analyse commercial viability of a patent before filing," said Professor VC Vivekandan of the National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (NALSAR- Hyderabad). The turnout will be poor due to multiple reasons, Vivekandan said.

Demonetisation takes toll on investment, manufacturing
Source: Mint; January 3, 2017

The worst fears about demonetisation taking a toll on the economy seem to be coming true.

There has been a sharp fall in new investment proposals since 9 November—the day the government’s decision to invalidate high-value currency notes came into effect, shows data released by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy Pvt. Ltd (CMIE).

This sombre prognosis is reaffirmed by the Nikkei Markit India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) which, for the first time in 2016, shows manufacturing contracting in December.

Previously, economists and global financial institutions lowered India’s growth projections for 2016-17 to less than 7%, citing the slowdown in economic activity from the cash crunch in the economy following the scrapping of Rs500 and Rs1,000 banknotes, which accounted for 86% of the money in circulation.

The Indian economy grew at 7.6% in 2015-16.

CMIE data shows investment proposals amounting to Rs1.25 trillion in the October-December quarter as compared with an average of Rs2.36 trillion worth of new investments seen per quarter in the preceding nine quarters that the Narendra Modi government has been in power.

Within the quarter ended December, the fall in investment activity is even more evident if one looks at the pre- and the post-demonetisation periods. While 227 new investment proposals worth Rs81,800 crore were announced during the quarter till 8 November, only 177 investment proposals worth Rs43,700 crore came in between 9 November and 31 December.

India's tax regime won't impact Foxconn's Nokia facility takeover: MeitY
Source: ET Telecom; January 4, 2017

India’s taxation regime would not come in the way of Taiwanese device maker Foxconn Technology's plans to take over Finnish mobile company Nokia’s closed manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu’s Sriperumbudur, a top government official said.

“Tax is not an overriding factor here (Nokia-Foxconn deal) while India’s talent pool plays a critical role,” Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) Secretary Aruna Sundararajan said. “In my view, taxation is not going to be a deciding factor.”

Foxconn, the world’s top contract manufacturer, and Nokia have been discussing plans to revive the latter’s shuttered manufacturing unit located barely 40 km from Chennai, but any deal hinges on clarity around whether tax sops will continue even after implementation of the goods and service tax (GST) regime. In addition, Foxconn has made it clear that it won’t bear the tax liability, which was slapped on Nokia, which led to the factory being frozen and subsequently closing down.

Sundararajan said there are enough incentives for companies to manufacture in India and the government will ensure taxation issues aren’t a hurdle.

“In the long term, productivity and relevant skill sets, including ready availability of technical workers, makes a difference and there is a natural inclination from multinationals to make a manufacturing presence in India,” she said.

State Govt to Introduce Widespread Policy Reforms to Boost Ease of Doing Business in Haryana: Vipul Goel
Source: The Economic Times; January 4, 2017

Government of Haryana in collaboration with Confederation of Indian Industry organised the fourth roadshow for Pravasi Haryana Divas in New Delhi on Monday. Industry leaders of Haryana origin attended the roadshow aimed to invite NRIs and people of Haryana origin to come and invest in the state.

Minister for Industries, Haryana, Vipul Goel, said: "Haryana is changing and perception about Haryana is changing even faster. The state has improved in ease of doing business rankings from 14th to 6th position in a short period."

"We are aiming at not only highlighting available avenues for investments in various sectors, but also offering concrete opportunities for meaningful contribution towards improving the lives of the people of Haryana,” he added.

Chhattisgarh Attracts New Investments in Oil, Electronics Sectors
Source: Business World; January 4, 2017

The Government of Chhattisgarh signed an MoU with Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) for setting up a petroleum, oil and lubricant (POL) depot in the state.

The proposed investment in the plant will be Rs 324 crore.

Another MoU for setting up of LED lights manufacturing plant in Electronics Manufacturing Cluster, Naya Raipur, with an investment of Rs 12 crore by Millenium Infratech was also signed during the event.

The proposed POL depot is to be established near Naya Baradwar Railway Station in Janjgir-Champa district. The project is to be set up on 115 acres of land which includes requirement for railway sliding as well.

Chhattisgarh State Industrial Development Corporation (CSIDC) has already allotted land measuring about 100 acres to HPCL and another 15 acre land for the project is to be allotted within weeks. This depot will ensure fuel availability in the northern part of the state.

The LED plant of Millennium Infratech will be set up in Electronics Manufacturing Cluster, Naya Raipur. About 1 acre land to Millennium Infratech has already been allotted to the company by CSIDC in their EMC in Naya Raipur. Both new projects will generate direct employment of around 150 people.

Chinese Manufacturers Capture Nearly 40 Percent of Indian Smartphone Market in 2016: IDC
Source: NDTV; January 4, 2017

Chinese smartphone vendors last year captured about 40 percent share in India, the second largest smartphone market in the world, the official media here reported.

Among all, Lenovo saw its shipment volume rise to the second only after Samsung in the third quarter last year, state-run China Daily quoted global research firm International Data Corporation (IDC) survey as saying.

Xiaomi took the third spot with a market share of 10.7 percent, whereas Chinese vendors collectively took up 40 percent, according to the survey conducted across 30 major Indian cities.

The forays by Chinese phone makers comes as India's domestic brands saw decline in market share.

Micromax reported a 16.7 percent month-over-month sales drop in October, the survey said.

Analysts noted that as smartphone giants look at India which has a population of 1.34 billion, to be the "new China" and the competition will be intense, the report said.

Despite growth, price war remains fierce in what is becoming the world's second-largest smartphone market where the price of a mobile averages only USD 100, the survey said.

"Lenovo has retained its duo-brand strategy in India," Rahul Agarwal, the company's managing director, told state-run Beijing News, adding that Motorola is focused on high-end market, taking up a third of its sales, whereas Lenovo phones targeting lower end account for two thirds.

IIT-B Startup Initiative: Get Rs 15 Lakh and Mentors on Board for 'A Tryst with Tomorrow'
Source: Firstpost; January 4, 2017

The IIT Entrepreneurship Summit 2017 is holding its 11th edition this year.

The E-Cell, IIT Bombay ‘s ‘The Ten Minute Million’, will be held on 28 – 29 January at the E-Summit of IIT Bombay. The theme for this year is ‘A Tryst with Tomorrow’. Speakers and participants from numerous countries and genres will be attending the event.

A first of its kind event in India, which premiered at E-Summit 2015, it involves 10 shortlisted startups pitch for 10 minutes in front of the investor panel and get an on-spot funding commitment for Rs 1.5 million or Rs 15 lakhs.

"Our idea was that, you take 10 months, we believe it can be done in 10 minutes. I would have been happy even if I had got a fraction of the response. Right from the entrepreneurs, to the investors to the audience, this is an absolutely outstanding response", said Ajit Khurana, one of the investor panelists.

One of the successful startups, Strike which got the promised amount then scaled up more than 10 times within a year, according to E-Summit. The past Investor panel consisted of angel investors like Ajeet Khurana, Anupam Mittal, Samir Shah, Sanjay Mehta and Aniruddh Malpani.

An initiative by the Entrepreneurship Cell of IIT Bombay, E-Summit is a confluence of visionary students, professionals or anyone who wishes to be one of those crazy rebels who will change the world, start his own business or fund a business and become a trend-setter.

Nasscom meets GST Council on concerns over implementation
Source: Firstpost; January 4, 2017

Cautioning that current form of GST implementation could pose serious challenges for IT sector, industry body Nasscom on Tuesday met the GST Council to express concern on tax treatment of software and make a case for single registration under the new regime.

"This is one sector where we have beaten the world. Today the sector is facing challenges overseas including protectionism and anti-globalisation.

"While government support on global issues has been exemplary, it will be ironic if GST reform implementation is such that it throws up crippling operational challenges for the sector," Nasscom President R Chandrashekhar said.

Such operational challenges could undermine global competitiveness of the sector, he cautioned.

While GST is a "path-breaking reform in both its promise and intent", the form in which it is proposed to be implemented poses serious challenges to the IT sector that has so far been under the Central Service Tax regime, Nasscom said in its presentation.

Nasscom contends that challenges for the IT sector arise because a single IT service contract may have multiple locations where an intangible service is delivered to and from -? be it domestic or exports.

It said that invoicing customer centrally is "impracticable" under GST as envisaged, and utilisation of input tax credit is difficult.

Complex place of supply, input credit and valuation requirements, in addition to multiple registration, is leading to an unviable situation, Nasscom said. "Our request is to allow for an option of single registration for the IT sector, without prejudice to the principles of dual control or apportionment of revenues between Centre and states.

Prasad urges Google to make for India
Source: The Hindu; January 4, 2017

Calling Google “as much an Indian company as it is American”, Electronics and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Wednesday said the tech giant needed to bring out more products tailored specifically for “India's psyche, local languages and local aspirations”, while working to enhance cybersecurity.

Mr. Prasad was speaking at a Google event in the national capital, where Sundar Pichai, CEO of the global major, announced a slew of initiatives targeted at small and medium businesses in the country. Mr. Pichai said the company was working on products for India that could be taken to global markets.

The Minister appealed to the U.S.-headquartered firm to work more towards ensuring digital security, particularly in the backdrop of the push towards digitisation post-demonetisation. “There has to be greater technological strengthening of the IT walls,” he added.

IT Secretary Aruna Sundararajan, also present at the event said, the Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM)app launched last week had seen 5 million downloads and about a million transactions.

A joint study by Google-KPMG said that rising Internet penetration and greater uptake for digital by SMBs could help increase their contribution to India’s GDP by 10 percentage points, taking it up to 46-48 per cent by 2020.

Mr. Pichai, who is scheduled to visit his alma mater, IIT Kharagpur, tomorrow, said, “When we solve for a place like India, we solve for everyone around the world. That has led us to grow our team here and spend more time and ensure the products are useful for everyone,” he said.

Xiaomi Says India Revenue Topped $1 Billion in 2016
Source: NDTV; January 5, 2017

Chinese mobile phone vendor Xiaomi crossed a revenue of $1 billion (around Rs. 6,800 crores) in India in 2016, less than two years since the company first entered India, with the launch of the Xiaomi Mi 3, in July 2014. In a Facebook post celebrating the milestone, Xiaomi India head Manu Kumar Jain wrote, "Based on what we know, we are the first company to cross $1 billion in such a short period."

According to Jain, Xiaomi crossed some more milestones in 2016 as well. In terms of shipments, he wrote that it's one of the top three smartphone brands as of Q3 2016. It also says it sold over 2 million smartphones in India, crossing that milestone in Q3 2016, a 150 percent year on year growth from the same period in 2015.

Jain also pointed out that the Redmi Note 3 sold 2.3 million devices in six months, making it the most shipped device being sold online, he added. He also added that the Redmi 3S (and Redmi 3S Prime), and Redmi Note 3 were the top selling devices during Flipkart's Big Billion Days, and Amazon's Great Indian Sale, respectively.

These devices in particular were great picks in terms of value for money, and so it's not surprising that they also contributed a lot to Xiaomi India's bottomline. Jain said that the Redmi 3S (and Redmi 3S Prime) and Redmi Note 3 together account for nearly 50 percent of the marketshare among the top 10 phones in India.

Compiled by IESA Research

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