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Mergers and Acquisitions fall sharply, but PE activity grows

2007 will go down in history as the year of Mergers & Acquisitions in India. However, 2008 has not kept pace with the momentum gained last year.

This year has not been good for India overall, Stock Market today has come down to nearly 12,500 points - a 15 month low -, investors have lost thousands of crores of rupees, the rupee has lost the fight handsomely against the dollar - last 6 months have seen rupee plummet from high of nearly 38.5 to a low of 42.75 against the dollar, real estate which grew at astonishing pace last year has seen tremendous slowdown. Inflation, which was hovering at less than 4% last year has nearly tripled to 11.5%.

The total number of Merger & Acquisition deals too have seen huge negative growth. During the first six months of 2008 total M&A deals stand at 265 with value at $18.54 billion as against 335 deals amounting to $ 43.97 billion in the corresponding period in 2007.

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Want to get home early from work? Spend some time on looking good !


office makeupYeah..that's what has been revealed in a recent Synovate survey on beauty. More than 55% of the people think that well groomed and good looking people can get away with less work at workplace than their peers. Now, I have my doubts if this holds true in India – you can make your judgements :) I’d be more inclined to say that girls do have advantage of being just that – girls. They do sometimes get away with lesser work at office, and its not only at workplace ! Think about any situation – lets say you are in a long queue to get tickets. If a girls approaches you saying she is in hurry, most of the you may allow her to go ahead and feel good about it. But if guy approached you, it very unlikely that you will allow him to get ahead of you. Unfair advantage? you take a call !

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Contentsutra parent company ContentNext gets acquired by The Guardian Media Group for $30 million +


The parent company of ContentSutra, ContentNext Media, has been acquired by Guardian Media Group for $30 million plus. It was founded by Publisher and Editor Rafat Ali in 2002.

ContentNext media has paidcontent.org, MocoNews, , PaidContent UK and ContentSutra under its wings.


Here is what Rafat has to say about it:

Almost six years after our company started with paidContent.org, we have been acquired by Guardian News & Media (GNM), the news media division of UK-headquartered Guardian Media Group (GMG). Guardian itself is owned by the Scott Trust.

GNM publishes UK national newspapers – the Guardian and the Observer – as well as the Guardian.co.uk and Media Guardian. We will be part of Guardian Professional group, which is the B2B media division for GNM, and runs targeted sites such the MediaGuardian, as well as online data businesses and conferences.

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Onmobile introduces audio ads on mobile platform: IS it too intrusive?


Mobile VAS company OnMobile launched an audio advertising platform for mobile operators. Called AdRBT (ad ringback tones), the service will play audio ads to callers when they dial a mobile number. onmobile To put it simply, when a caller calls a particular mobile phone, he/she will hear ads while the phone is ringing. In return mobile operator will offer incentives to the mobile user who subscribes to this services. Offcourse, the mobile operator will require a permission from subscriber to activate the service on his or her mobile phone.

The ads can be targeted based on the location and VAS usage of the caller. The VAS usage data gives information such as what handset the caller is using, whether he uses the roaming service, how often he travels abroad, the types of ringtones he downloads and the services he uses. OnMobile will also play ads in regional languages. Apart from choosing the profile of the customer, advertisers will also be able to specify the number of times they want their ad to be played in, say, a week or a month, says Tripathy. They can also specify how many times they want their ad to be played to a particular caller in a fixed time period.

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Indian Internet Audience Growth highest in Asia-Pacific region

Comscore recently published the growth in Internet audience for Asia Pacific region, with India registering highest growth for the first time. According to the figures, India stands 3rd after China and Japan in the total number of Internet Audience.

Internet Audience Growth in the Asia-Pacific Region

April 2008 vs. April 2007

Total Asia-Pacific - Age 15+, Home and Work Locations*

Source: comScore World Metrix


Total Unique Visitors (000)



% Change

Asia Pacific
















South Korea
















Hong Kong








New Zealand





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7 grand challenges facing IT

I came across this report by Gartner while writing my previous post. It talks about major challenges faced by IT Industry that have not been resolved as yet.

I am reproducing that report here for readers benefit.

Here are the seven IT Grand Challenges as identified by Gartner.

Never having to manually recharge devices:

Today, the ubiquity of portable computing and communications devices powered by battery means that many people would find it highly desirable to either have their batteries charged remotely or their devices powered by a remote source, bypassing the use of batteries altogether.  Despite more than 100 years of research since the invention of the Tesla Coil in the late nineteenth century, the most notable progress to date was achieved by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in July 2007 in their experiment to transfer non-radiative power. By this measure, any commercial application of wireless powering still seems a long way off.

Parallel Programming:

Rather than simply creating faster single-core processors to perform tasks serially, another way to meet the constant demand for faster processor speed is to develop multiple, slower speed processors that perform tasks serially. Simulations, modeling, entertainment and massive data mining would all benefit from advances in parallel computing. However, a challenge with parallel computing is to create applications that fully exploit a “multi-core” architecture by dividing a problem into smaller individual problems addressed by individual processors. To overcome this, key issues will need to be addressed, including effectively breaking up processes into specific sub-processes, determining which tasks can be handled simultaneously by multiple processes, scheduling tasks to be processed simultaneously and designing the architecture of the parallel processing environment.

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Tata Motors to introduce Air Car – Is it the next big thing?


Tata Motors is taking giant strides and making history for itself. First the Landrover-Jaguar deal, then the world's cheapest car and now it is also set to introduce the car that runs on air, compressed air to be specific. Air Car With fuel prices touching nearly $150 per barrel, it is about time we heard some breakthrough !

India’s largest automaker Tata Motors is set to start producing the world’s first commercial air-powered vehicle. The Air Car, developed by ex-Formula One engineer Guy Nègre for Luxembourg-based MDI, uses compressed air, as opposed to the gas-and-oxygen explosions of internal-combustion models, to push its engine’s pistons. Some 6000 zero-emissions Air Cars are scheduled to hit Indian streets in August of 2008.
The Air Car, called the MiniCAT could cost around Rs. 3,50,000 ($ 8177) in India and would have a range of around 300 km between refuels. The cost of a refill would be about Rs. 85 ($ 2). Tata motors also plans to launch the world's cheapest car, Tata Nano priced famously at One lakh rupees by October.

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Want a great job, Mumbai is still the best !

Mumbai still rules the job market in India. It has cornered more than 18.50% of all the jobs produced between the period of January and March 2008 according to Job trendz : across cities and sectors survey prepared by the ASSOCHAM,

Here are the rankings of cities topping the job charts.

Rank City   Job % share
1 Mumbai 18.52
2 Gurgaon, NCR 15.41
3 Delhi 11.55
4 Bangalore 10
5 Pune 8.9
6 Chennai 8.8
7 Hyderabad 8.1
8 Lucknow 6.61
9 Kolkata 6.49

Surprisingly, Kolkata even being a Metro ranks even below Tier I & II cities like Pune and Lucknow.

The study was based on the sample of 32,000 vacancies posted by around 3,500 companies in the national and regional dailies, journals and job portals like “timesjobs.com” and “naukri.com” during the three months period of January-March 2008.

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Even the poorest in India pay bribes to get their work done


Corruption is big in India, no 2 ways about that. Globally, India ranks at lowly 132, behind most of the developed and developing countries.

The general perception on corruption is that only rich in India get their work done by way of corruption. However, recent study shows that the poorest (Below poverty line - BPL) junta too pay bribes in big numbers.

The TII-CMS India Corruption Study shows that below poverty line households paid more than 883,00,00,000 (883 crore rupees) to avail basic services like Public Distribution systems, hospitals, school education, electricity and water supply.

I was always under the impression that most of the middle and higher class (essentially people with money) paid bribes. I know one of my very close friends paid Rupees two lakhs to get admission for his daughter in Nursery, yes nursery !

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Top 10 things India needs to achieve its potential

Goldman Sachs Economic Research division has released an excellent paper listing down 10 most crucial reforms that India needs to concentrate on to achieve its 2050 potential. The paper has been written by Jim O'Neill and Tushar Paddar of Goldman Sachs.

If India can carry out certain reforms, it can grow more than 40 times bigger by 2050.

Here are the list of Top 10 Things for India to Achieve its 2050 Potential according to Goldman Sachs:

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Startup / Entrepreneur Resources: Full contacts details for Angel Investors, VC’s and incubators !

Here is a great resource for startups or entrepreneurs who are looking for investment for his startup.

NEN Online recently released a comprehensive list of Angel Investors, Venture Capitalists, incubators, tech parks and even startup recruiting firms. The list offers entrepreneurs full details including the names, contact numbers, URLs, email IDs and URLs.

NEN Contact list for startups and Entrepreneurs:

Angel's List
Angels (20)

Entrepreneurship Course (14)

Govt Fund (23)

Incubator List (44)

Industry Related
Industry Association (224)

List Of Banks
List of Banks (11)

Private Global List
Private (30)

Private Indian List
Private List (39)

Recruiters (19)

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How to get Admissions in Top Indian B-schools, IITs & IIMs

Entrance Exam, CAT, Common Admission Test, B-School, Admission preparation, IIT admission, Admission procedure for IIMs, TOp Business school admission procedure, b-School-Top, B-Schools, bangalore, Best-B-schools-for-HR, best-B-schools-for-pursuing-MBA, MBA written examination, IIM entrance admisiion procedure, Top Indian Business Schools, Written CAT exam, S.P. Jain Mumbai, Management Development Institute, (MDI) Gurgaon, NITIE Bombay, MBA colleges, CAT scores, XAT, Xavier Admission Test, XLRI Jamshedpur , XIME Bangalore, XIM Bhubaneswar, BIM Trichy, LIBA Chennai, Goa Institute of Management, FMS Delhi, IIFT Delhi and the Schools of Management, Management Entrance Test or JMET, analytical & logical reasoning test, Application Essays, Reference Letters, IIM Bangalore, GD-PI , CAT clearance, Group Discussions, Personal Interviews, Admission notification from top B Schools, management institutes,

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The real estate numbers speak otherwise

Contrary to popular belief, recently released real estate numbers suggest that the property market is not slowing down, Infact it is still rising. I am really surprised and not really sure if these numbers reflect the reality of situation.

Every property purchased has to be registered with property registration office. The following data was collated from the office of the state's inspector-general of registration and stamp duty.
City 2006 2007 % growth 2008 % growth
Mumbai 40,803 41,012 0.51 44,232 7.85
Thane 47,155 53,838 14.17 60,551 12.46
Pune 70,395 68,004 -3.39 79,973 17.60
Nagpur 24,529 25,937 5.74 27,514 6.08
Nashik 21,087 23,176 9.90 28,409 22.50

The comparison of first three months' data in the last three years also shows that registrations have gone up substantially. The number of registrations increased by 13.54 per cent during January to March this year compared with the same period in 2007, while it increased by a mere 4 per cent during January-March in 2007 compared with the year-ago period.

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Authorstream: Online powerpoint presentations on Steroids


When I came across Authorstream, the immediate thought that came to my mind was it is an exact replica of popular online presentation site Slideshare. However, after a closer look it was clear that Authorstream has number of additional features that makes it quite appealing to online powerpoint presenters ! Authorstream logo Authorstream not only allows users to upload powerpoint presentations online, but it also has ability to convert your presentations into video format (mp4), if you have set up 'Rehearsed Timings' or have recorded audio 'Narrations' in your Powerpoint presentation. The uploaded presentations can also be downloaded to iTunes. Now thats neat !

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