Famous four: Indian-origin women in Forbes’ list of 50 female technology moguls!

Four Indian-origin women have been named by Forbes among America’s top 50 female technology moguls, a list that includes tech heavyweights IBM CEO Ginni Rometty and Netflix executive Anne Aaron.

Padmasree Warrior, former Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Cisco; Komal Mangtani, senior director at app-cab aggregator Uber; Neha Narkhede, Chief Technology Officer and co-founder of streaming platform Confluent; and Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan, CEO and founder of identity-management company Drawbrige; are in the list.

“Women don’t wait for the future. The 2018 Inaugural Top 50 Women In Technology list identifies three generations of forward-thinking technologists leading more than a dozen tech sectors across the globe,” Forbes said in its ‘America’s Top 50 Women in Tech 2018’

Warrior (58) served in executive positions at both Motorola and Cisco and is now the US CEO of the Chinese electric-autonomous-vehicle startup, NIO.

ForbesTop50
Image from Forbes 50

At the $138-billion Cisco Systems, she had helped the tech giant grow in influence through acquisitions. She is also on the boards of Microsoft and Spotify.

“Warrior still finds the time to mentor other women in the tech industry, stay in touch with her 1.6 million Twitter followers and follow a nightly meditation routine,” the business magazine said.

Mangtani, an alumnus of Dharmsinh Desai Institute of Technology in Gujarat, heads business intelligence at Uber. Currently, she serves on the board of nonprofit organisation Women Who Code and led Uber’s $1.2-billion donation and partnership with Girls Who Code to increase access to computer science.

Narkhede, who studied at Pune university, had as a software engineer at LinkedIn helped develop Apache Kafka — which can process the huge influx of data coming from the site in real time. The data-processing software has become the heart of Confluent, an enterprise Narkhede founded with her LinkedIn co-workers to build tools for companies using Apache Kafka, Forbes said.

The 32-year-old’s firm counts Goldman Sachs, Netflix and Uber as customers.

Forty-three-year-old Sivaramakrishnan’s company, Drawbridge, uses large-scale artificial intelligence and machine learning to identify the different devices people.

“As the number of devices people use on a daily basis — computers, laptops and smartphones — increase, advertisers need a way to show ads to a person across all their devices. Facebook and Google already offer these services to advertisers, but now they have a competitor with Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan’s Drawbridge,” Forbes added.

Article compiled from Forbes and other sources

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The Dos and Don’ts of NRI Investing In Indian Realty

Amongst the NRI’s there are 3 types of investors. The first type look for short term gains over a period of 1-3 years, the second type look to buy for themselves and the third type are long term investors who want to be in the market for 7-10 years.

The first type of investors have disappeared and more number of people looking to buy for personal use have surfaced.

Samir Jasuja, the founder and CEO of PropEquity added that the market has stabilized in the last 6 months and the worst times are behind us. Over the last 3 years with the advent of demonetization, GST and RERA, the new launches have come down by almost 90%. The best cities to buy into are governed by 3 major factors, which are employment generation, infrastructure and the overall supply demand situations prevailing in the market. Banglore and Mumbai are two of the most hot sites of Real Estate because of the presence of all the 3 aforementioned factors.

“The NRI fraternity is used to 10-14% returns on investment from the residential segment in India” said Virendra Adhikari, the CEO of Asset India Ltd., on being asked about the do’s and dont’s of NRI investment. However, these figures have been bearish due to the current market scenario.

Amongst the NRI’s there are 3 types of investors. The first type look for short term gains over a period of 1-3 years, the second type look to buy for themselves and the third type are long term investors who want to be in the market for 7-10 years. The first type of investors have disappeared and more number of people looking to buy for personal use have surfaced.

More online in the article (link)

After years of heady growth Patanjali Ayurved is facing a slowdown

A while ago, we featured Patanjali Ayurved, and it was the fastest growing FMCG company in India. Our feature (link).

Patanjali Products

A few recent articles in the Indian media seem to indicate that Patanjali Ayurved is facing a slowdown after years of heady growth. According to an article in Economic times,

It closed the last financial year at around the same level as the previous fiscal year’s revenue, Rs 10,000 crore.
However, there could be a bigger worry for Patanjali than flat revenues. According to a recent Credit Suisse report, consumer offtake has declined in many product categories. While the company continues to hold sway over toothpastes with Dant Kanti, and in ghee, incremental gains in these categories are said to have declined. “Patanjali is facing headwinds with FY18 sales  ..

Another article also reviews if Distribution could be Patanjali’s Achilles heel? 

There is a huge gap between demand and supply, admits Acharya Balkrishna, MD of Patanjali Ayurved, who’s recently been in the news for his 94% stake in the organisation. (A development touted as a strategic move to take the limelight off Baba Ramdev who has been the face of the company all this while). Balkrishna tells us that besides 1200 Patanjali Chikitsalayas, 2500 Aarogya Kendras, 7000 open stores in villages, and 5600 marketing vehicles, his team is working on launching 250 mega stores in .

According to industry estimates, Patanjali products are currently available in 2 lakh traditional retail outlets popularly called as kirana shops. That’s 1/30th the presence of Hindustan Unilever in the kirana universe (over 60 lakh outlets) — the market leader in FMCG space who Patanjali has reportedly been giving sleepless nights to. As for Colgate and Nestle — players Baba Ramdev took a direct dig at and threatened to oust within a year — the numbers are 47 lakh and 35 lakh, respectively.

Prem Watsa named ‘NRI Of the Year’

Prem Watsa, founder of Fairfax Financial Holdings, was conferred the Special Jury ‘NRI of the Year Award’ at the fifth edition of Times NOW & ICICI BankNSE -1.67 % NRI of the Year Awards 2018. Indian football team captain Sunil Chhetri was presented with the ‘Global Indian Icon’ award. The Times Network and ICICI Bank awards were hosted in Mumbai on Friday.

Image result for prem watsa blackberry

One of India’s top recognition platforms, The NRI of the Year Awards salute the spirit of global Indians who have made a mark for themselves worldwide. “Over the course of five editions, NRI of the Year, our flagship property has emerged as the most distinctive and coveted awards platform, instituted to recognise the achievements of the global Indians. It is an important component of our engagement with the Indian diaspora as a media group representing a nation with a global agenda,” said MK Anand MD, Times Network. Kiren Rijiju, minister of state for home affairs, was the chief guest for the function.

Read rest of the article in Economic TimesEconomic Times

Prem Watsa has a sizable investment in Blackberry (According to bloomberg)

“The reason we put a lot of money in [BlackBerry] was because of [CEO] John Chen. John Chen is an outstanding executive — long track record. And I met him just like that in San Francisco. And he had a terrific turnaround at a company called Sybase. And then he says, you know, I bought every BlackBerry that existed and I really don’t want this company to go down. So I said, would you look at perhaps joining the company, and he said, ‘I’ve got to talk to my wife. If she says yes, I will.’ And she said yes and he joined us. If he hadn’t come, we likely wouldn’t have put [in] any money.”

10 money management tips for NRIs

ET Now has an interesting article that highlights money management tips for NRIs. The practical tips include

  • Maintain An NRO/NRE Account In A Bank In India – If you are an NRI and still have income sources in India such as income from ancestral property or from a rented out property, you can keep the money in India by opening an NRO bank account.
  • Create A Power Of Attorney To Manage Your Property In India – If you are leaving behind your property in India, you must assign a person to take care of your assets on your behalf. I
  • If You Wish To Keep Money in An Indian Bank – If you want to maintain a fund with an Indian bank, while you are abroad, you must look for a bank which has a branch in the country you reside at.
  • Watch Out For Currency Rate Fluctuations – You should be careful about the currency fluctuations when making an investment or taking loan in India. A slight change in the value of Indian Rupee against the foreign currency can significantly impact your effective return.
  • Weigh Your Options Before Taking Loan – Being an NRI, you have the advantage of taking loan from both Indian and International banks in the country you live in.
  • Manage Your Taxes – As an NRI, you need to comply with the tax laws of both countries: where you reside and in India. The tax deduction benefits in India are more or less similar for both NRIs and the residents. Still, you might want to consult a tax advisor to maintain tax discipline.
  • Stay Updated With What’s Happening in the Indian Economy – If you own properties or have money invested in India, then it is important that you stay updated with the policy and regulatory changes taking place in the country.
  • Buy Health Insurance Cover – NRIs often prefer to get treatment done in India to deal with a health issue, as there is family back home to take care of them. So a health policy in India always comes handy. You can claim tax benefits on the premiums paid under Section 80D and reduce the tax liability for income accrued from India.
  • If You Plan To Move Back To India – One of the important decisions to make once you are abroad is whether you want to continue living abroad or move back to India.

I want to explain arranged marriage to white people

A recent article in BBC.com features Pakistani designer Nashra Balagamwala and her views on arranged marriage.

When Pakistani designer Nashra Balagamwala produced a board game about arranged marriage, most news reports about her wrongly assumed she was dead against it. Actually her position is far more nuanced. And one goal is to explain to people in the UK and elsewhere how it works.

Balagamwala’s kickstarter campaign generated a lot of buzz and raised thousands of dollars more than what she was seeking.

Balagamwala was at the Rhode Island School of Design in the US when she came up with the idea.

“I was about to head home to Pakistan at the end of the year, and I had some proposals waiting for me, so I started stalking the Facebook accounts of those guys to find something about them that my parents wouldn’t approve of, so I could get out of meeting them. And then I thought to myself, ‘Why not get rid of the problem once and for all?’ So I created a list of every ridiculous thing I’ve done to get out of an arranged marriage and turned it into this light-hearted board game.”

 

She tested her game out on her friends, a mixture of South Asians and white Americans.
An American male friend was in fits of laughter while playing. He admitted to Balagamwala that he’d been worried the game would trivialise the subject, but said that he now had a better understanding of it.

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Link to an article in scroll.in

Will 2018 be the year when NRIs begin investing in Indian property?

An article in Business line highlights how “With RERA kicking in, NRI interest in Indian realty set to rise”

With the introduction of RERA has turned out to be a real market force, and the transparency it enforces will draw residential real estate back to centre-stage

Implementation of Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 will boost the Non-Resident Indian sentiments on Indian real estate sector, say market experts.

With more transparency coming in the realty sector, there is bound to be an increase in the number of NRIs planning to buy property back home, they said..

The Indian real estate sector, in recent times, has witnessed a lot of changes, more so after the introduction of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 and the Goods and Services Tax (GST).

“As RERA will ensure timely delivery of projects and also since all the information will be available online, it will boost the confidence of NRIs who are thinking of investing in the Indian real estate market. But, the GST might have a negative impact on the buyers as there might be increase in the price of the properties,” said Parveen Jain, Vice-Chairman, NAREDCO (National Real Estate Development Council).

Right now, prospective home-buyers have to pay a 12 per cent GST to developers if they are planning to buy a property which is under construction. However, there is no GST on the fully constructed property.

Also check out our recent articles on investing in India: