Friday, January 02, 2009

E-Summit 09: Day 1: Guest Lecture by Sramana Mitra (Part V)

Now comes the big one.

ALTERNATIVE ENERGY. Sramana started off with the perfect example to demonstrate her BoP point of view. SELCO, started by Harish Hande, provides solar energy services for villagers without electricity. Solar energy has enabled them to double their productivity by enabling them to work after dark. Can there be a better example of a social enterprise that successfully gets past so many goals, solves so many problems, causes so much social upliftment, and yet, is for-profit. Kudos to Harish Hande!!

Other examples that may be explored include: AdiShakti (Solar Utility), Wind Energy, Nuclear Energy and BioFuels.

The RETAIL sector holds great promise as well. She exemplified this with Urja, an initiative in fashion. The idea here is targeted marketing, i.e., personalisation in retail. Thus, a customer does not have to go through thousands of samples and catalogues, but is offered the products based on their preferences.

Another similar idea is behind Oishi, but with Gifts. Besides these, retail has great space for innovations. For example, Indian artisans can work in tandem with designers from France and Italy. The resultant product will have both quality and innovation, and great marketability. Such products can do well on the export front, and could be tied with Global Brands.

For India, Sramana saw great potential in the TOURISM and HOSPITALITY SECTOR. Examples of good execution would be Tea Tourism in Darjeeling and Renaissance Luxury Hotel Rentals. The tourism sector in India needs to be aligned to serve Higher-End travel. Think High-end tourists, and the cash registers are already ringing in my ears, plus it’s great for the economy.

Similarly Sramana covered ENTERTAINMENT, which needs to go beyond Bollywood in India. She sees great promise in Framed Ivory (which produces period films) as well as Elixar (Animation Studio). Also, Non-Cricket Television Channels and Sports academies (NCTV) have got a great scope for entrepreneurship too.

The fields of REAL ESTATE, RURAL DEVELOPMENT and TRANSPORTATION, LOGISTICS & INFRASTRUCTURE hold great potential as well in India.

Now time to do some Homework!!

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