Making sense of data protection, economy, youth & a lot more

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After nearly a decade of deliberation on data protection, the Parliament has passed the Digital Personal Data Protection Act 2023. This Bill signals the onset of a new era in India’s digital journey, one that recognizes the value and centrality of personal data in today’s globally interconnected digital economy. The interests of individuals and governance have been addressed through various provisions. And businesses need to urgently establish elaborate data systems for compliance with the provisions of this law.

Policy-making is a complex endeavour. Laws must accommodate diverse views from disparate constituencies, and it’s not fair to hold it against them if our own views were not fully considered in the process. Now that the Bill has been passed, we must contend with it. Rather than lamenting missed opportunities, I would rather focus on all that needs to be done now. We have eagerly awaited the enactment of this law for over a decade. Numerous conclaves were held at MMA to discuss the Bill and its outcomes. Now that the Bill is upon us, the magnitude of work that remains for everyone to undertake is huge indeed. In this context, MMA organized a seminar on the theme “Decoding Data Protection Act 2023” on August 24th, 2023, in association with FDPPI. Several experts from all over India shared their insights on the Bill and the way forward for its effective implementation. I am delighted to present an article on this as the cover story. Read the article and watch the video for more information…

Can India become the world’s third-largest economy?

The Prime Minister recently stated that India will become the world’s third-largest economy in the next few years. While it is almost certain that India will become the fourth-largest economy before 2029, attaining the third position may not be as straightforward. Based on GDP at constant prices, India’s economy totalled $2.95 trillion in 2022. This places India as the sixth-largest economy globally, trailing behind the United States, China, Japan, Germany, and the UK. Given the current state of the British economy, India is likely to surpass it in 2024, potentially becoming a larger economy than Germany by 2029. However, overtaking Japan, which holds the third-largest economy position today, will be challenging. It is more realistic to anticipate that we will surpass Japan by 2030.

Amidst this buzz, it’s crucial to remember that per capita income, or the average income of an individual Indian, holds significant importance. In 2022, India’s per capita income stood at $2085, in stark contrast to the UK’s per capita income of $47232. This metric deserves greater attention if the goal is to accurately depict the prevailing economic landscape. The UK’s economic output, which is nearly comparable to India’s, is distributed among a smaller population, resulting in a notably better economic situation for the average British citizen compared to their Indian counterpart. This fact invites thoughtful consideration.

India’s century & its youth

Being a young person in India is a fortunate prospect now as the country enters a new era of unprecedented opportunities. India has achieved the distinction of housing 108 “unicorn” companies, ranking third globally after the US and China. Over the past decade, the average investment size has nearly quadrupled, and revenue-based valuations have more than doubled. The value attributed to ground breaking ideas has reached unparalleled heights. However, this surge in growth has experienced a recent deceleration.

According to Venture Intelligence, both the number of deals and the amount invested have witnessed declines of 60% and 79%, respectively. This trend can be attributed to several factors, including companies failing to meet expectations and fluctuations in valuations due to exposure to public markets. Many investors are now exercising caution, preserving their resources for insiders’ rounds to weather potential market shifts. A crucial aspect of addressing this situation is through enhanced governance practices, which can facilitate sustained capital influx into our start-ups ecosystem. The cultivation of a culture characterized by accountability, ethical behaviour, and transparency is now of paramount importance.

A remarkable facet of India is its capacity to learn from past mistakes. Instead of relying solely on external regulations, it would be more impactful for founders and investors to proactively uphold higher standards. Entrepreneurs must acknowledge that sound governance is as pivotal as having a robust business model and a considerable market share. Investors, on their part, should demand transparency, accountability, and the establishment of independent boards. After all, a company’s reputation is only as sound as the reputation of its leaders.

In this context, the MMA is facilitating a series of discussions on the theme “Start-up India: Opportunities and Excitement.” We are inviting successful entrepreneurs to share their insights for the benefit of startups, investors, and our members. You can watch these discussions online or participate in person at the MMA Management Centre.

The Chandrayaan triumph

India has achieved an extraordinary feat by successfully executing a soft landing on the surface of the Moon. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) orchestrated a meticulously planned landing near the Moon’s South Pole, delicately slowing down the lander to ensure a gentle touchdown. This landing site, known as the “Dark Point,” has long been suspected of harbouring secrets that only a direct exploration could unveil. The ISRO scientists undoubtedly deserve the highest commendation for accomplishing this challenging journey. Their achievement stands as a testament to how determination, hard work, and perseverance can transform failure into success. In this regard, one is reminded of the timeless fable of the hare (Russia’s Luna-25) and the tortoise (Chandrayaan-3), where India’s steady and determined approach emerged victorious.

Following this lunar triumph, ISRO is now directing its attention towards the Sun. India’s inaugural solar mission, Aditya L1, is set to launch later this week. The mission holds paramount importance in the study of the Sun. Despite being 150 million km away from Earth, the Sun is our nearest star, radiating intense energy crucial for our planet. The Sun also frequently exhibits eruptive phenomena like coronal mass ejections. Variations in space weather resulting from such events can impact satellites and other space assets. Early warnings of these disturbances can enable timely preventive actions. Additionally, the Sun serves as a natural laboratory for investigating extreme thermal and magnetic phenomena that cannot be replicated on Earth.

We extend our best wishes to ISRO for their forthcoming solar mission, Aditya L1. Their pursuit not only exemplifies India’s commitment to space exploration but also underscores the country’s place in harnessing the potential of the Sun for scientific advancement.

ESG Rules

The freshly introduced regulations surrounding ESG (Environment, Social, and Governance) disclosures, set forth by market regulators, are undeniably stringent. These regulations, although demanding, represent a significant step in the right direction and are imperative for aligning with global standards. The journey ahead for companies will require considerable guidance and knowledge sharing. Ultimately, these meticulous disclosures by companies will serve to meet the expectations of international investors.

In this context, MMA is gearing up for its Annual Management Students Convention, centered around the theme “Innovate for a Responsible Tomorrow.”

The event aims to gather a constellation of experts who will share their insights into diverse aspects of ESG, including Sustainable Growth, Leadership for Inclusive Success, and Eco-Conscious Business Strategies. The Convention is scheduled to take place on October 4th, 2023, at the IIT Research Park Auditorium. We invite you to mark your calendars and join us in watching the proceedings live.

Conclave on CSR

Despite their substantial CSR potential, Indian firms’ expenditure on Corporate Social Responsibility remained stagnant in 21-22. The aggregate CSR spending of 1205 listed firms, mandated by law, amounted to 14,801 crore rupees. This considerable sum, pooled within the CSR funds, demands judicious utilization by both corporations and stakeholders.

The central aim of this conclave is to cultivate awareness among all stakeholders in the CSR landscape regarding the underlying purpose and intricacies of the CSR Legislation enacted by the government. Our objective is to identify avenues through which Social Entrepreneurs can harness CSR to propel their ventures, thereby fostering adherence to legal requirements and motivating companies to execute projects aligned with their Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) objectives.

Moreover, the conclave sought to shed light on appropriate accounting methodologies for non-profit entities and spotlight pertinent case studies illustrating successful CSR implementations. By undertaking these efforts, our intent is to cultivate an environment conducive to effective CSR execution while establishing robust frameworks for its implementation.

In this context, the MMA organized a conclave under the theme “Ten Years of CSR” on August 19th, 2023, at the MMA Management Centre. An in-depth article on this subject is featured in this edition for your perusal. Additionally, the entire conclave can be viewed on YouTube here.

CavinKare-MMA Chinnikrishnan Innovation Award 2023

Mr. Chinnikrishnan sparked the “Sachet Revolution,” envisioning that the joys of the rich should also be accessible to the common man. In a befitting tribute to his legacy, the CavinKare-MMA Chinnikrishnan Innovation Awards stand as a jubilation of innovation in India.

This year marked a pivotal change as the awards embraced a fully digital approach to engage with innovators across India. Through dynamic campaigns on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube, we successfully reached a wide spectrum of innovators. The outcomes exceeded our expectations, amassing an impressive 65 lakh impressions and engaging over 40 lakh individuals. We’re especially thrilled by the participation of numerous startups in the realm of green technology, showcasing innovations that are both timely and relevant.

Following rigorous deliberation by a distinguished panel of jurors, three exceptional innovations have been chosen to receive the awards. The grand award ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, September 16th, 2023, at the IIT Madras Research Park Auditorium. The event underscores the vital importance of a dedicated emphasis on innovation to democratize products and services. We invite you to join us in championing this spirit of innovation. Mark your calendar to either be present at the celebratory event or tune in and watch the proceedings live.

We urge you to constantly send in your feedback—positive ones as well as criticisms, both are equally important inputs in enabling us to get better at what we do.

As always, we would be happy to hear your views, comments and suggestions.

Happy reading!

Reflecting on a Remarkable Year 2022-23

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As I pen this editorial, I am filled with immense gratitude and a sense of pride. The Annual General Meeting (AGM) and the awards function held this year were truly exceptional. It would not have been possible without each and every one of you who graced the occasion with your presence and unwavering support. Your participation and valuable contributions throughout the year have been the driving force. Your dedication to our shared objectives has added tremendous value to the growth and achievements of our organization. The highlight of the event was the enlightening address by our esteemed Chief Guest, Mr. Shenu Agarwal. He shared invaluable insights on achieving Managerial Excellence, and his words resonated deeply with all present. His thought-provoking and inspiring ideas have left a lasting impression on our minds, urging us to excel in our managerial roles.

Equally captivating was Mr. Shrinivas Dempo’s address, where he delved into the theme of changing leadership in changing times. The wisdom he imparted has been greatly appreciated by our esteemed members, leaving us all with a fresh perspective on effective leadership amidst dynamic environments.

In this edition, we take immense pleasure in presenting an article that captures the essence of the Chief Guest’s address, accompanied by an embedded video. We believe this content will not only be a valuable resource for you but will also serve as a source of inspiration for your professional journey. Click to view the video.

Moreover, we are delighted to share the video presentation showcased during the AGM, spotlighting the activities and achievements of MMA during the year 2022-23. Witnessing the progress and growth of our organization is a testament to the collective efforts of our members and well-wishers. Click to view the video highlights.

It is my sincere gratitude that I extend a big thank you to all of you for your continued support to MMA and its activities. Your unwavering commitment and involvement have paved the way for our achievements, and we look forward to scaling even greater heights with your support in the coming years. As we move forward together, let us strive for excellence and continue to be the driving force behind positive change and growth.

Change of Guard

The new managing committee was announced during the MMA AGM held on 7th July 2023, and it’s a privilege to work with a team of highly accomplished leaders. We will take forward our vision, guided and supported by the new Managing Committee headed by President Mr. Mahalingam, Partner/Director of TSM Group of Companies. The Managing Committee, consisting of experienced professionals and new entrants with a vast corporate background, would immensely contribute to taking MMA to greater heights. I will be failing in my duty if I do not place on record the great support extended by Mr. Suresh Raman, Vice President & Regional Head, TCS Chennai, who was our President during 2022-23. He has been a great source of inspiration and support towards achieving our objective. Personally, it has been a unique privilege to be a part of his team. I thank him for his unstinting support in all our endeavours.

With this change of guard, we embark on a new chapter filled with promise and determination. Together, with the support of our esteemed members and well-wishers, we are committed to achieving our objectives and surpassing all expectations.

AI: Challenges & Opportunities

The opportunities presented by Generative AI outweigh the challenges for India. It can be profitably deployed in numerous ways, and we have a great opportunity to lead its development for responsible value generation. While fears of artificial intelligence (AI) eliminating jobs are pervasive, we have reasons to be particularly optimistic. Indian engineers working in the Information Technology sector may be affected by AI deployment from multinationals, potentially reducing the volume of work. However, to brighten our prospects, it needs to be embraced responsibly. Generative AI has a variety of applications, such as boosting sales or enhancing customer engagements, which, if utilized effectively, can open up exciting new growth avenues for India.

India is a global leader in technology services and entrepreneurship. Embracing Gen AI adaptation is often a pathway to strengthen its position and create new opportunities.

In this context, MMA organized a conclave on the theme “Generative AI: The Future Is Here.” Several interesting sessions were held, with thought-provoking views shared by the speakers on various opportunities and issues connected with the adoption of Generative AI. I am delighted to present in this issue an interesting article on “Understanding the Generative AI Landscape,” held during the conclave, for your reading. You can also watch the video recording of the conclave. Click to view…

Back to the Moon!

The countdown for Chandrayaan-3 to make a soft landing on the moon has begun, and the lunar touchdown is expected on 23 or 24 Aug 2023, when a lander is scheduled to descend and roll out a rover. If successful, India will become only the fourth country to reach the moon and the first to physically explore an inhospitable part of it. The pioneering spirit displayed by our space scientists is truly fascinating. We wish them success and fervently hope that we will soon expand the frontiers of what humankind knows about this mysterious object in the sky that has fascinated us throughout the ages.

Internationalizing the Rupee

The Government of India is making systematic efforts to internationalize the Indian Rupee with the hope that it will become a hard currency within the next decade. The objective is for the Indian Rupee to be included in the IMF’s SDR (Special Drawing Rights) basket and be recognized by other countries as part of their foreign exchange reserves. This, in turn, would lower India’s financial costs.

The way forward is to encourage Indian residents and foreign parties involved in international trade transactions to use the Indian currency for settling payments. The more such transactions are conducted in Rupees, the greater the international acceptance of the Indian currency for trade settlements. However, it is important to recognize that achieving widespread appeal for the Indian currency abroad will depend on its usability and acceptance in various global transactions. We have a long way to go, but this strategic endeavour holds promising potential for India’s economic standing on the global stage.

As we progress towards this ambitious goal, it is essential to maintain a steady and focused approach, fostering confidence in the stability and strength of the Indian Rupee. By gaining trust and recognition internationally, the Rupee can solidify its position as a formidable global currency, enhancing India’s economic influence and standing in the world.

Love all!

The recent Wimbledon match between Novak Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz for the men’s championship was a riveting display of see-saw fortunes. The drama reached its peak when Djokovic’s racquet smashed against a net-post in the final set, leading to a memorable victory for the almost 16-year-old Alcaraz, who showcased immense talent and skill. Despite the intense competition, the former champion Djokovic exemplified grace and humour in his post-match presentation, setting an inspiring example of sportsmanship.

In contrast, the world of cricket has witnessed unedifying spectacles of sneaky run-outs, leading to heated brouhahas with nationalistic overtones. Recent incidents, such as those between England and Australia, and the Indian women’s cricket match with Bangladesh, highlighted how the principles of fair play and sportsmanship can sometimes be overshadowed by a win-at-all-cost mentality.

Wimbledon continues to stand out for its spirit of true sportsmanship, where competitors value the spirit of the game above all else. As we reflect on these sporting events, it is our hope that leaders in our corporate world and young managers will take inspiration from the high quality of sportsmanship displayed by Novak Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz. Emulating such values in our professional lives can lead to a more harmonious and respectful work environment, where competition is healthy, and the spirit of fair play prevails.

Let us all strive to embody the principles of sportsmanship in our endeavours, remembering that true greatness lies not only in victory but also in how we conduct ourselves on and off the field of play.

Top Ten Emerging Technologies in 2023

The World Economic Forum (WEF) recently released its Annual Report on the top ten emerging technologies of 2023, aimed at professionals across various sectors discussing industry-shaping applications for society. The report’s goal is to assist business leaders and policymakers in harnessing the transformative potential of these emerging technologies and promoting their widespread adoption.

The list of top ten technologies identified by the WEF includes flexible batteries, Generative Artificial Intelligence, Sustainable Aviation Fuel, Designer Phages, Metaverse for mental health, wearable plant sensors, spatial omics, flexible neural electronics, sustainable computing, and AI-facilitated healthcare. Embracing these technologies and leveraging their benefits should be our collective endeavour for the betterment of everyone.

In line with our commitment to knowledge sharing and innovation, MMA will organize informative sessions on each of these technologies throughout the year. These sessions will offer valuable insights and practical applications, ensuring that our members and stakeholders stay at the forefront of technological advancements.

In this issue, I am delighted to present to you engaging articles on How to Make India Water Resilient, Women and Sustainability, Real Estate – AGILE, and much more. We encourage you to explore these pieces, watch the accompanying videos, and be inspired by the endless possibilities that lie ahead.

As we move forward, let us embrace these emerging technologies with enthusiasm and vision, driving positive change and creating a better future for all.

We urge you to constantly send in your feedback—positive ones as well as criticisms, both equally are important inputs in enabling us to get better at what we do.

As always, we would be happy to hear your views, comments and suggestions.

Thank you for your continued support and readership.





Thriving on Change

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As we conclude another successful financial year at MMA, I express my sincere gratitude for your unwavering support. It is my pleasure and privilege to be associated once again with this special edition of the digital Business Mandate. MMA has grown from strength to strength, carving a niche for itself as a multidisciplinary group focused on delivering high-quality management programs that benefit not only its members but also the wider public. Ranked as the number one organization among its peers in India, MMA remains committed to fulfilling the vision and mandate set forth by its founding members. I extend my heartfelt thanks to the MMA members, past presidents, managing committee members, and secretarial staff for their contributions in achieving this milestone.

Among the management fraternity, the MMA Awards for Managerial Excellence stands as one of the most prestigious accolades, celebrating leaders in businesses, entrepreneurs, and professionals for their outstanding all-round performance. These awards recognize excellence, innovation, service, and commitment to stakeholders, and also acknowledge the remarkable business models driven by individuals who think differently, serving as an inspiration to all. The award applicants were subjected to a rigorous evaluation process using a unique and scientific methodology devised by Deloitte, our consultant for the awards.

MMA extends its heartfelt congratulations to the winners of the 21st MMA Awards for Managerial Excellence: ESAB India Ltd (Manufacturing Sector), MEL Systems and Services Ltd (SME Sector), ZOHO Corporation (Services Sector) and University of Madras (Educational Institutions).

Generative AI

The rapid advancement in generative artificial intelligence (AI) and its ability to replicate human intelligence in writing computer code and much more has taken us all by surprise. Generative AI is currently taking the tech world by storm. With its capacity to create new and unique content—ranging from text, images, videos, music, AI-generated commentary at Wimbledon, and more—AI is revolutionizing businesses across various industries, including manufacturing, healthcare, IT and design, advertising, and marketing.

In this context, MMA organized a one-day conclave in association with EY & KAS on June 28, 2023, at the MMA Management Center. The conclave featured international thought leaders and industry experts as speakers. These speakers are optimistic that India can lead a global shift from AI to augmented intelligence, aiming for a better world. I am delighted to present you with the article covering the inaugural session for your reading pleasure. You can watch the full conclave here.

How to Make India Water Resilient?

India’s water crisis is a ticking time bomb, with some predicting that the country will be unable to meet half of its water demand by 2030. Even today, NITI Aayog, the government think-tank, states that 600 million Indians face high water stress. Cities across India struggle to provide sufficient potable water to households, especially during the summer and drought years, and the situation will worsen with the increasing effects of climate change. Solving this problem seems like a herculean task.

In this context, MMA, in association with the Sundaram Climate Institute and KAS, organized a seminar on the theme “How to Make India Water Resilient.” The event featured experts in the field of water management and climate change. In this issue, we cover the thought-provoking insights shared by Mr. Amit Chandra, Chairman of Bain Capital, and Ms. Mridula Ramesh, CEO of the Sundaram Climate Institute and Executive Director of Sundaram Textiles.

I highly recommend watching the inspiring keynote address by Dr. Rajendra Singh, water conservationist and environmentalist, popularly known as the “Waterman” from Rajasthan. You can watch the entire seminar here.

India’s Defense Strategy Taking Shape

We are delighted to witness the progress in India’s defense plan of integrated tri-service theatre commands, which is finally taking off. The enabling Bill has been introduced in Parliament, and the Indian Defense Forces are prepared for joint theatre commands and enhanced collaboration. India has always prioritized full autonomy in times of war and peace as a fundamental principle of sovereignty. While we seek to strengthen our operational capabilities in partnership with the US, it is crucial to maintain a favorable tooth-to-tail ratio, supported by advanced technology, to safeguard our national interests. Whether in times of conflict or peace, India’s autonomy must remain non-negotiable.

The Exodus of Wealthy Individuals

The recent estimate of the increasing number of affluent Indians leaving the country is not a cause for celebration. According to a recent report, approximately 6,500 high-net-worth individuals are expected to leave India this year. Such departures occur due to various reasons, but one underlying factor may be discontent with the current state of affairs in their home country. In India, punitive tax rates beyond a certain income threshold and tighter restrictions on transferring funds abroad, contrary to the spirit of an open economy, might be contributing to this trend. It is disconcerting that a significant number of our prosperous citizens prefer to live elsewhere. Offering dual citizenship could potentially allow them to retain their Indian passports, an aspect that should be considered to attract and retain talent. We must strive to improve our ranking in terms of domicile preference.

Is Glamour Waning for Startups?

The excessive euphoria surrounding the growth of large and valuable companies fueled by venture capital (VC) investments is gradually fading away. India will continue to present significant and intriguing problems that excite entrepreneurs; and addressing many of these issues will require applying fundamental principles of business building.

During the era of easy money, numerous ill-conceived ideas received funding, valuations skyrocketed, and the importance of achieving good product-market fit was often overlooked. The availability of easy money led to two critical mistakes. First, there was a mistaken belief that the size and ubiquity of a problem were sufficient to rapidly build large and profitable companies. Many assumed that high customer satisfaction and repeat business equated to excellent product-market fit. The reality is that no fit exists until these factors translate into a price point that ensures business profitability.

Startups aiming for success in the next phase must cultivate a deep understanding of the challenges faced by a large number of Indians. They also need to harness their imagination to create cost-effective products and solutions. Entrepreneurship should enable individuals to embark on their journey of destiny.

In this context, an event organized by MMA on “The Making of a Champion” featuring Mr. Viswanathan Anand, Mr. Geet Sethi, and Mr. Viren Rasquinha holds great relevance. These exceptional champions, with a total of 14 World Championships between them, offer valuable lessons that entrepreneurs can learn from. I encourage you to read the article, watch the videos, and find inspiration.

Be Watchful!

The Sensex hit a record high recently reaching 65,000 mark surpassing its previous peak reached in December 2022. The return of foreign portfolio investor interest, after the impact of money squeeze in the west has been reassuring. Still the market’s recent rise has enough volatility to betray some nervousness among investors. The market remains vulnerable to global adversities and monetary issues, and expansion by the US have had unforeseen effects. Therefore, it is critical for investors to stay alert. In this context, an event organized by MMA on “A Guide to Wealth and Happiness” is very relevant, and stresses on the need for investors to be calm and cautions.

Top of Form

A new beginning…

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While inaugurating the new Parliament building, the Prime Minister delivered an inspiring address that emphasized the need to forge a developed India during the auspicious Amrit Kaal. He aptly described the new Parliament building as a link between resolution and accomplishment.

The inauguration ceremony marked a milestone in our nation’s journey towards progress, development, and strong democratic principles. The new Parliament stands as a symbol of our collective aspirations, where every citizen is represented and every voice heard, thereby fostering an inclusive and participatory democracy. It is not merely a physical structure, but a testament to our democratic values, where ideas are exchanged, debates held, and decisions made for the betterment of our great nation. It has been meticulously designed to accommodate the evolving needs of a dynamic democracy and to provide a conducive environment for meaningful deliberations.

We convey our heartfelt gratitude to all those who have contributed to the construction of the new Parliament. Their unwavering commitment and passion have resulted in a structure that will serve as a beacon of democracy and a testament to India’s aspirations for years to come.

Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) a Game Changer in Digital Commerce!

The concept behind ONDC is commendable; it aims to bring about positive changes in the e-commerce landscape. However, it is essential to evaluate whether it has actually made the intended impact on businesses. The ONDC website presents itself as “Everyone’s Commerce” and promises to deliver an e-commerce revolution in India. Its objective is to provide an alternative to large platforms with monopolistic powers by establishing an interoperable decentralized network that empowers small sellers and offers customers better choices.

Meanwhile, numerous start-ups, often labelled as monopolistic, such as Swiggy and Zomato, are facing significant challenges in maintaining profitability. It remains uncertain whether these companies will ever become highly profitable businesses. While the intent behind ONDC is laudable, the game-changing elements of its business model are not clearly apparent. It will be intriguing to observe how this idea unfolds and whether it can truly bring about the envisioned transformation in the industry.

The Journey of a Champion

I am delighted to share about a unique, upcoming event that celebrates the journey of champions. It features three outstanding sports personalities: Mr. Geet Sethi, Mr. Viswanathan Anand, and Mr. Viren Rasquinha. This event will take place on June 15, 2023, at the MMA Management Center.

This event will provide a platform for the exchange of views, knowledge, and inspiration. Participants will have the opportunity to hear firsthand accounts of the challenges faced and lessons learned by these champions. Whether you are a sports enthusiast, aspiring athlete, or simply seeking inspiration, this event promises to be a memorable experience.

Mark your calendars for June 15, 2023, and join us at the MMA Management Center to witness the journey of champions unfold before your eyes or watch it live at….

The Real Estate – AGILE

The Society of Auditors in association with MMA and with the support of KAS is organizing a one day seminar on 23 June 2023 at MMA Management Center.

Real estate is the second-highest employment generating sector, and India is poised to become the third-largest construction market in the world. However, despite its potential, this sector faces numerous challenges. This program aims to provide an excellent platform for the exchange of views and knowledge regarding various aspects of the real estate industry.

In this context, some of the topics covered during the seminar will include the challenges in plot development, property redevelopment, joint property development, leasing of unsold inventory, valuation of closing stock, accounting methods and much more. Additionally, leading advocates and chartered accountants will shed light on the trending tax disputes and provide approaches to prevent, manage, and resolve such disputes. Kindly join us in person or watch it live…

Generative AI: Embracing the Future of Productivity

Generative AI when viewed as a new tool for routine and repetitive tasks, has the potential to revolutionize the way we work, allowing us to focus our efforts on core responsibilities and thereby enhancing productivity. While it’s true that elementary jobs may face potential risks, we can mitigate the impact of AI by adapting to this transformative technology, just as we have done in the past with the emergence of new tools. AI can take care of mundane tasks, freeing up our time to concentrate on activities that truly add value.

It’s important to recognize that it is not AI itself that takes away our jobs, but rather how we choose to utilize AI as a tool. We have the power to shape our future by making informed decisions about how we leverage these technologies. We must recalibrate our skills and strategies to ensure success in an AI-driven world.

In light of this, MMA, in collaboration with E&Y and KAS, is organizing a one-day seminar titled “Generative AI: The Future is Here” on Wednesday, June 28, 2023, at the MMA Management Center. The aim of this seminar is to facilitate a comprehensive understanding of Generative AI’s business applications, limitations, regulatory considerations, and the effective utilization of these tools. Whether you join us in person or choose to watch the seminar live, this event promises valuable insights into harnessing the power of Generative AI for future endeavors.

Let’s embrace the possibilities and prepare ourselves to navigate the exciting future that lies ahead with Generative AI.

Brand IPL – Congratulations CSK!

Rains forced the IPL 2023 final into the reserve day for the first time. It was worth the wait for CSK fans: Ravindra Jadeja emerged as the hero, leading CSK to a dramatic last-ball victory against the Gujarat Titans and securing their fifth IPL title.

In this context, it is worth reflecting on the remarkable journey of the IPL since its inception in 2008. The league has evolved into a powerhouse brand, currently valued at close to $11 billion, making it one of the most valuable sporting leagues in the world. The IPL has been a game-changer for cricket, providing a solid foundation for professional cricket and generating significant revenue for the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to foster the growth of the sport. The IPL’s success also attests to the strength of India’s robust consumer economy.

“Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” – Peter Drucker

This issue’s cover story revolves around the theme “The Company We Keep: Insights into India’s Corporate Culture.” The discussion sheds light on the emotional dilemmas, the challenges of aspiration, and the everyday battles that shape a successful career. Introspection should not solely focus on discovering flaws but equally on recognizing one’s strengths and true potential. It is often simpler to build upon existing strengths rather than creating entirely new capabilities. We invite you to read this insightful article, which includes an embedded video for your viewing pleasure!

MMA AGM 2023

I am pleased to share that the 67th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Madras Management Association is scheduled to take place on Friday, July 7th, 2023, at the MMA Management Center. During the AGM, we will be presenting the prestigious Award for Managerial Excellence. The recipients of this esteemed award will also share their remarkable journeys that led them to receive this coveted recognition.

We are honored to have Mr Shrinivas V Dempo, Chairman, Dempo Group of Companies, and Mr. Shenu Agarwal, MD & CEO, Ashok Leyland as our esteemed guests. They have graciously accepted our invitation to present the award and address our members during the AGM. Their valuable insights and experiences are sure to inspire and motivate everyone participating in the AGM.

We eagerly anticipate your participation at the AGM, the Awards function, and the dinner that follows. It promises to be a remarkable event filled with knowledge sharing, networking opportunities, and celebration. Let us come together as a community to recognize excellence and reinforce the spirit of growth and progress of MMA.

Thank you, and we look forward to your enthusiastic participation at the AGM.

Sustainable & Equitable Water Management

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Water is paramount for economic development, but related issues concerning consumption are worrisome. Climate change is disrupting the consumption pattern, hitting even agriculture which consumes over 80% of India’s fresh water. By 2030, India will only have 50% of the water it needs.  This crisis is likely to be the worst in India’s history and will disproportionately impact agriculture and other areas. India’s water crisis is a ticking time bomb. I strongly believe that the benefits derived from small water bodies are enormous.  They are found in all parts of the country, and are easily accessible and manageable. In this context, MMA is organizing a seminar on, ‘How to make India water resilient?’ in association with Sundaram Climate Institute (SCI) and KAS on Thursday, 11 May 2023. The studies compiled by SCI reveal how deep and unequal the crisis is, how it will become far worse if we do nothing, and what solutions are likely to work. By prioritizing sustainable and equitable water management policies and practices, we can ensure that water resources can be managed effectively and fairly for generations to come.

The New Foreign Trade Policy

The new foreign trade policy (FTP) came into force on 1April 2023.  The objective is to formulate, implement and monitor trade policies to boost exports, facilitate imports and maintain a favorable balance of payments.  The Government has also done away with the conventional practice of setting a five-year cycle.  The new policy is intended to be responsive to changing circumstances and will be modified as and when required. Additionally, the Government will also consistently gather input from relevant stake holders to enhance and revise the policy as required. The Government’s endeavor is to increase India’s overall export to $2 trillion by 2030, with equal contributions from the merchandise and services sector.

In this context MMA, KAS, FIEO and DGFT organized a seminar on ‘Implementing Foreign Trade Policy 2023.’ Senior Officials from FIEO and DGFT shared insights on changes in the Foreign Trade Policy for the benefit of participants. 

Click here to watch the recording of the seminar.


We have surpassed China to become the world’s most populous country. It is a cause for neither celebration nor dismay.  Despite the population boom over the past many decades, the birth rate in the country is dropping sharply enough for stability to be attained. The challenge now is to ensure that our people add up to national strength rather than weakness. We still have too many people adding too little value to the economy, an issue we can only solve if we could develop a significantly wider skill that can be gainfully employed.  This can be achieved only by focusing on basic health care and providing high quality education for all. Even today, huge gaps result in large a number of our population being left out. India must close these gaps to realize its demographic dividend or it would become a demographic disaster.

The Trillion Dollar Dream!

MMA – KAS in association with FICCI FLO is organizing a presentation by
Mr Suresh Sambandam, Founder and CEO, OrangeScape (Kissflow), on Monday 8 May 2023.  Suresh now dreams of making his company at least one of the top three in the world in its category.  He will also share his insights on India’s cloud software sector and why he believes that it can really deliver a trillion dollars in value.  Please join us in person at MMA or watch it here.

Dr.V.Mohan and Good Health

Dr V Mohan is a renowned diabetologist and endocrinologist who has dedicated his career to studying and treating diabetes and its related conditions.  He addressed the members of MMA on 04 April 2023 and shared his tips for maintaining good health and preventing chronic diseases. He emphasized on maintaining healthy diet, regular exercise, avoid smoking, get good sleep and manage stress.

He reiterated that adopting a healthy lifestyle by following the tips shared by him can go a long way in preventing chronic diseases and maintaining good health.  It is important to note that these tips are general guidelines and may not apply to everyone, so it is best to consult with a healthcare provider before making any significant lifestyle changes.  The transcript of his talk is published in this issue with embedded video.  Kindly read on and watch the video to lead a healthy life.

Psychology of Persuasion

A thought provoking discussion on the theme of the book ‘Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion,’ by Robert B Cialdini was held on 21 April 2023, featuring experts from various fields, such as marketing, psychology and business. The discussion centered around six principles of persuasion outlined by Cialdini in his book. These principles include reciprocity, commitment and consistency, social proof, authority, liking and scarcity.

The panellists discussed how these principles can be applied in various contexts relevant to their respective domain to influence people’s behaviour. They also discussed the ethical implications of using these principles and the importance of using them responsibly. I am delighted to present transcript of the discussion in this issue with embedded video. Please read on and watch the video to enhance your power of persuasion.

India & Quantum Computer

The Union cabinet approved Rs. 6,000/- Crores for National Quantum Mission (NQM) to develop quantum computers and scale up research and development in quantum technologies.

Quantum computers are believed to be 100 million times faster than even the most advanced Supercomputers. Quantum computing can accelerate research in areas from health to finance. The fund will support technical and research institutions to collaborate with startups and other firms for developing quantum computing and applications. It is a great step in the right direction to achieve the $5 Trillion economy.


In the past few days, COVID cases are marginally on the rise. Indian health authorities have rightly gone into preparatory mode in case COVID break out of its endemic pattern and pose a big threat again. Since this is not a serious threat, nobody should overreact: COVID will always be with us. So watch out and take care!

Marching into April, inflation, happiness, migration…

Read Time:5 Minute

India’s economy is expected to expand by about 6.5% over the next 2-3 years.  In fact, it is intrinsically better positioned than the economies of many other countries.  This is mainly due to the resilience and reliance on domestic drivers, unlike the global economy. India would not slow down; it would maintain the pace of growth. We remain optimistic whatever the odds, and it is time to look back and look forward. In this context, MMA organized a discussion on the theme “India’s Pathways to Success: Winning in the Next Decade,” where thought-leaders shared their insights.

Click to watch the video recording of the event.

Labour & migration

Internal migration is an overwhelming reality that underscores India’s developmental landscape. While migration opens up new vistas of work for millions of people on the move, it also pushes people into unequal and highly exploitative work regimes. Skilled migrant workers are less vulnerable to exploitation, but their departure deprives some developing states of the valuable labour needed for their development. International Labour Organization (ILO) standards on migrant labour provide adequate protection to this vulnerable category of workers.  There are many questions around inter-state migration/migrants. These pertain to the changing demography, social structure, and also outward remittances of migrant workers to their parent states. This has socio-economic and political electoral consequences for both the donor and recipient states, especially the latter, particularly in the context of prevailing and evolving political dynamics and their influence on society.

In this context, MMA organized a discussion on the theme “Inter-State Migration: Demography and Economy.” The article on the discussion is published as cover story in this issue with an embedded video. Check it out.

Silicon Valley Bank

The shutdown and takeover of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) by US regulators has raised a number of questions  on how it would impact Indian start-ups and what does it mean for Indian banks. SVB played an important role as partner for the global startup economy. It is clear that SVB did not suffer loan defaults but was hit by bond losers that many US banks are vulnerable to, and SVB is more of a lender than an investor. According to a research firm, Tracxn, SVB invested in about 21 Indian startups.  At this stage, SVB’s failure has not assumed such proportions, even if a few startups suffered. However, the serious concern is that many VC’s deposited millions in SVB, which could lead them to further slowdown their funding initiatives.

The impact on Indian banks is not significant since they have little exposure to SVB.  The good news is that Indian banks are tightly regulated and they are unlikely to face a similar fate. RBI’s stress test found that Indian banks would be able to withstand severe stress and that banks are at their best shape. That said, the sector is not without its challenges, including some of the clients left for higher returns in other investments avenues.


India’s retail inflation eased 6.44% in February from 6.52% in January.

This is however hardly satisfying given that it is still well above the RBIs 6% upper band.  Hopefully, the inflation rate would drop in March.  The US Federal reserve has raised the Federal fund rate for the 9th time in a row.  Inflation will remain the Fed’s greatest priority and India’s Central Bank typically tends to mirror the Fed. Given this, it is highly likely that RBI will increase the repo rate or the interest at which it lends to banks, when it meets next April.  This means that instalments on loans may go up further. Also with the interest rates in the US going up, foreign investors have better investment options available there. Its implication is that the Indian stock market will remain dull and that Rupee-Dollar exchange rate might come under further pressure.

Say cheese! Smile please!!

The latest World Happiness Report has much for India to think about. According to its ranking of countries, India is among the least happy nations—measured by social support, income, health, freedom, generosity and absence of corruption. India is ranked 125th, coming behind Nepal, Bangladesh, China and Sri Lanka. On top of the rank is Finland, crowned the happiest nation for six years in a row followed by Denmark and Iceland. These countries do well with initiatives such as a strong social safety net, but in India our policies are focused on expanding the economic pie rather than sharing it. Happiness involves more than just economic well-being; enlarging people’s financial strength would be a big step in the right direction. And for that, equitable growth is mandatory.

In this context, an event organized by MMA on “A Happier You: Strategies to Achieve Peak Joy in Work and Life Using the Science of Happiness” is interesting and insightful. Do read the article published in this issue and watch the video.

One year into the Ukraine War

The Ukraine War entered the second year. It is a humanitarian and human rights catastrophe. It has traumatized a generation of children and has accelerated food and energy crisis in most parts of the world. In the hostile atmosphere, where both Russia and Ukraine are still unrelenting, peace negotiations are the only solutions to end the war. The rest of the world has to ensure that this happens at the earliest. In this context, MMA is organizing a discussion on the theme “One year into the Ukraine War” on 17th April 2023 at MMA Management Centre. Please join us in person or watch it live.

MMA Flagship Events

The MMA Annual Convention and Women Managers Convention organized by MMA was a grand success.  A galaxy of eminent speakers addressed the delegates. Both the conventions were attended by a large number of delegates—over 1500 in person and over 35,000 online.   I am indeed thankful to our members and Managing Committee members for their unstinted support which enabled grand success of the MMA flagship events. 

I am delighted to present to you articles on the inaugural and keynote of the Annual Convention for your reading pleasure. You can also watch the video recording of the convention. Click to view the full coverage of the Annual Convention and the Women Managers Convention.

We urge you to constantly send in your feedback—positive ones as well as criticisms, both equally are important inputs in enabling us to get better at what we do.

As always, we would be happy to hear your views, comments and suggestions.

Wish you a very Happy Tamil New Year’s Day!

Happy reading!

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