IIPM Admission

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

IIPM leading Business School offering management courses BBA MBA

IIPM is a leading private B School offering a range of management courses (BBA, MBA). I am a student at IIPM and must tell you that IIPM has a very rigorous curriculum. In today's highly competitive environment, companies don't just look out for high IQ levels in individuals. They look for go-getter who exhibit outstanding people skills along with leadership traits in every sphere of your life. And IIPM BBA and MBA courses focus on developing that. During my academic tenure at IIPM, we were all exposed to many lively discussions and debates on diverse areas of business and economy from both national and international perspectives. Be it case study analysis or marketing presentations or debates on national economic planning, all activities got us to assess, discern, analyze and act upon the critical issues involved, hence helped in acquiring business acumen, enhancing our decision making abilities, honing our leadership abilities in the process. We also got to attend sparkling sessions with faculties from some of the world's top universities like MIT, IMD, Cornell and Cambridge. Honestly, IIPM's intensive management course provides a lot of opportunities to students and brings about a complete transformation in their overall personality. Also remember, that whichever college one may choose, the learning is entirely dependent on one's own effort and how one makes use of these opportunities. Even IIPM's placements are really good. If you will search LinkedIn, you would get to know that IIPM alumni are really successful and are working in good positions with best of the companies. You may also access this link: http://www.iipm.in/public/cult-emagazine/ for its alumni. If you wish to apply for admissions at IIPM, I guess you could fill up your details at http://www.iipm.edu/online-registration/apply/apply.asp and IIPM counselors will get in touch with you and answer your queries. You can also contact Denny.mathew@iipm.edu or call him at +919560700217 . He will guide you through the admission process. If you want additional assistance, please feel free to contact me directly at bikram431@gmail.com

Friday, March 29, 2013

While the Western press remained as clueless as Alice in Wonderland, Hugo Chavez posted a spirited win against the combined opposition

If someone had been following the events in Venezuela in the run-up to the elections through the Western press, he or she might have expected a different result than what came out this Sunday. The Western press had already read the epitaph on President Chavez and were, for all practical purposes, ready to usher in Henrique Capriles Radonski as the next president. The reality was off the mark and substantially so.

Incumbent Hugo Chavez was re-elected Venezuelan president for 2013-2019, trouncing his younger conservative rival Capriles for the Roundtable of Democratic Unity Coalition (MUD). The election marks Chavez's third term in office under the amended 1999 constitution and is his fourth election as president since 1998. In fact, with this, he has won 12 victories in all, including the parliamentary elections as well as a recall referendum.

With almost all the votes totalled, Chavez bagged 55.11 per cent of the popular vote against Capriles’ 44.27 per cent, a lead of 11 per cent. The Latin American firebrand also won a majority in 22 of Venezuela’s 24 provinces, including the capital territory of Caracas. He won with 0.5 per cent margin in the province of Miranda, which is governed by opposition candidate Capriles. The opposition took the two Andean provinces of Merida and Tachira. Chavez also won in Zulia and Carabobo provinces currently held by opposition governors.

While it was expected, based on some documents and evidence that came out through sting operations and investigative journalism, that the opposition would try to discredit the election, Capriles was quick to accept the verdict and congratulate the incumbent. International election observers and independent experts, including former US President Jimmy Carter, have gone on record to suggest that the electoral system in place in Venezuela is fool-proof and impossible to rig and is probably one of the best in the world.

Following the elections, the UNASUR election observer team congratulated the Venezuelan election commmission for the free and fair polls. “Venezuela has given an exemplary demonstration of what the functioning of democracy is and has taught a lesson to the world, and this is important,” the Argentine observer team head Carlos Alvarez was reported as saying.

However, in the run-up to the elections, this fact did not stop the Western press from going on a wild goose chase. Now since the voting machines are hi-tech and impossible to sabotage, the press gave it a curious spin by saying that “since it was hi-tech, Capriles' voters are fearful that their fingerprints might be used for retribution against them.” In fact, the reporting on the Venezuelan election will go down as one of the most biased in recent history, even more so than the Iranian or Russian ones. While the exit polls across the board clearly showed a lead in the range of 10-14 per cent for Chavez, reports in the Western press suggested his imminent fall. Headlines like “How Hugo Chávez Became Irrelevant” (NYT), “President Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan dictator” (NWR), “Hugo Chávez: A Strongman's Last Stand” (The Guardian) and “The End of Chavez?” (The New Yorker) indicate the level of biased reporting the Western press resorted to.

“Luckily both the candidates shared a pleasant telephone conversation in which Chavez invited Capriles and the opposition 'to respect our differences,' while Capriles urged Chavez to promote national unity and 'respect for all'. This reflects the maturing of the electoral process,” asserts Ewan Robertson, a political analyst with Venezuela Analysis.

However, there is a visible reduction in the margin of victory for Chavez. That can be attributed to several factors. To start with, this election was more polarised than any of the elections in the last decade and a half. The opposition coalition consisted of 30 political parties and outfits ranging from Left to Right with opposition of Chavez the only common goal. There were four candidates other than Chavez and Capriles but they were so irrelevant that none managed to win even 0.5 per cent of the vote. The third place went to Reina Sequera with 0.47 per cent votes.

Another factor in this election was the media campaign targeted against Chavez. Contrary to popular belief, more than 70 per cent of all the active media outlets in Venezuela are privately owned. And a majority of them are controlled by elites who are virulently against Chavez and his socialist brand of politics. For example, one of the biggest groups is owned by a Cuban in exile based in Miami. No prizes for guessing who he will be rooting for. Also, unlike the previous elections, a remarkable synergy developed between these media outlets and those from the West, creating an atmosphere of doubt where many started believing that Chavez might not return.

The anti-incumbency factor also set in. A large section of voters believed in the old adage that nobody should rule thrice. Plus, there is genuine concern about corruption and lethargic bureaucracy as well. “There indeed is some discontent with the bureaucracy and corruption within the ranks of the ruling coalition as well as other government departments. Also, the government has not performed satisfactorily on the issue of revamping the justice system and rein in crime. These things affect all the voters and has played its part in the elections,” explains Tamara Pearson, an analyst with Venezuela Analysis.

Although the victory for Chavez is complete and overwhelming, his task is clearly cut out. His coalition will have to gear up for the upcoming elections for the National Assembly. The opposition, emboldened by the show, will not disintegrate on the face of defeat as they would have had their tally been less. The margin of victory in provinces like Amazonas, Anzoategui, Bolivar, Carabobo, Lara, Nueva Esparta and Zulia, is slender and the opposition might spring a surprise there. Chavez would want to reinforce these areas.. His recent speeches suggest that he acknowledges the shortcomings and is ready to make amends.

But for the next six years, Chavez is going to stay and push his revolution deeper. And that will definitely not go down well with several capital cities in the Northern Hemisphere.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Foreign investment in the retail sector will be actually beneficial for it in many ways

Perceptions about the government’s decision to permit 51 per cent FDI in the retail sector have triggered a major controversy. Not only have the opposition parties gone all out to thwart the move, but allies to have backed out of the government over the issue, leading to an impending risk of the government collapsing. Why does FDI in retail prove to be so controversial? Today, the small shopkeeper prices staple food items and household products so arbitrarily that two different consumers may pay different prices for the same product on the same day. However the entry of big retailers into the market will ensure such malpractices cease through standardisation of prices.

While the unorganised sector of traditional retailers, which comprises 92 per cent of the retail market, has apprehensions over FDI, the organised sector of modern retailers which represents the other 8 per cent of the market is open to the idea but with some reservations. Traditional retailers are against FDI in multi-brand retail because they think it could drastically displace them from the market space with customers getting attracted to the retail giants through offers of lower prices.

On the other hand, modern retailers largely favour FDI as they believe it could create healthy competition, offer wider consumer choices and compel infrastructure development. Moreover, modern retailers do not feel threatened – given the enormous size of the Indian market, estimated at US $ 450 billion – because they feel that there is sufficient space for them to co-exist along with the new entrants in the field.

Also, the retail giants are unlikely to pose a threat to the 15 million small, independent grocery and retail shops, scattered across the country that comprise the traditional retail sector who would be able to continue to attract their loyal clientele. Given the size and diversity of the demographic profile across the country in terms of age, education and income, this is a reality.

For instance, a construction worker from a rural area would not feel comfortable shopping at an air-conditioned mall while a young urban professional would prefer doing so. Moreover, the young professional would be an extremely brand conscious consumer which a small store would be unable to provide for. Another aspect pertains to personalised services in terms of credit and home delivery and proximity to home – which the small shop owner offers his customers.

Undoubtedly traditional retailers would have to innovate and improvise their store strategies to cope with the entry of large format retailers. Considering that customer segments for unorganised and organised retail sectors are different, it is unlikely that traditional retailers would face the threat of displacement from FDI.

Among the many misconceptions, it is little known that the retail giants will only be allowed to establish a presence in population centers over one million, which is synonymous with urban areas. To that extent, rural India is not the target demographic for the retail giants. This would give the foreign retail majors access to 53 towns/cities in the country according to the Commerce Ministry. Moreover, these retail majors would have to source 30 per cent of their requirements from either manufactures or process units in the small and medium enterprisesaccording to one of the conditions specified for them.

For global retailers who suffer from low growth in the West due to poor consumer demand, India offers a maturing market for them to boost their top line and profitability. Some global retailers who now operate in the country with the Cash and Carry (wholesale) format have not been able to make the desired dent into the retail sector. The lack of supply chain and logistics infrastructure, government regulations, absence of coordination with small and medium scale processing units related to commodities; prove to be a stumbling block. Otherwise, some big retailers have plans to start their Cash and Carry businesses to primarily establish a market presence and create brand awareness for themselves in the country.

Today the retail sector as a major pillar of the economy, accounting for 15 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product, or US $ 450 billion. The sheer size of the country’s population – 1.2 billion people – puts India among the top five retail markets globally. Also, the fact that retailers are unhappy with the existing supply chain infrastructure which only FDI in retail can facilitate through capital investments only strengthens the argument to implement such a revolutionary economic policy.  


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Haroon Reshi courses around the floating market on Dal Lake and finds the commerce inconspicuous next to the spectacle...

Shaban Wani (64) wakes up at 3 AM every morning; he loads his small wooden boat with fresh vegetables cultivated in his floating garden (called Radh in the native language) at Dal Lake, and at 4 AM, paddles his vegetables-laden boat towards the floating market in the middle of the Lake for sale purposes. That is how Wani has been earning his livelihood for the past 50 years.

Wani, however, is not the only one making a living off the floating market – a one-of-its-kind market in India and only the third in the world after the famous ones in Vietnam (Mekong River) and Bangkok.

This market cluttered with rowing boats is at its best in the mornings, the air fragrant with freshly harvested vegetables, fruits and fish, not to mention the picturesque Valley scenery under the morning sun. The market stays from 5 AM to 7 AM; the leftover fruits and vegetables are then sent to the city’s terra firma street markets.

While serious buyers show up in droves, locals and tourists also flock to the floating market to take in the colourful sights and sounds and to feel the invigorating morning breeze. Most folks residing in and around Dal Lake are affiliated with the tourism trade, but fishing and harvesting of water plants is also an important revenue source for many Dal dwellers.

More than ten thousand kanals (one kanal = 1/8th of an acre) of land is used for vegetable cultivation along the Lake. Vegetables like bottle gourd, ladyfinger, cucumber, pumpkin, cabbages, tomatoes, spinach, chilies, capsicums, potatoes, onions, melons, brinjals, radish and cauliflower make it then to the rowing wooden shops. The floating gardens are made on a base of roots of various grasses and weeds growing wild in the water.

Leaves and wild vegetation compost is spread over the base and it is then ready for the plantation of vegetables, fruits and flowers. There are many who plant only seasonal flowers and sell them to tourists. At the market, farmers and vendors not only sell their green vegetables against payment but also indulge in barter business.

“The vegetables, fruits, flowers and fish from Dal had a vast market in the entire Srinagar city when there was a canal called Nala Mar going through the middle of the city. The canal was filled by the government to be replaced with a road in the 70s,” Zarief Ahmed Zarief, a noted social activist, recalls. The waters of Nala Mar divided the city into two parts; apart from vegetables, vendors used to ferry things like construction material, timber, rice etc to the city over this canal.

For most tourists in the Valley, a visit to the floating market on Dal Lake is one other must-do apart from a stay in the houseboats. “It is a superb experience to see this market on pristine blue waters of the Lake. Its timing makes it more beautiful. One can also get to see many types of aquatic birds around. I had never known something like this in my life…. One gets to be really close with nature,” Rakesh Roy, a tourist from Mumbai, who had come to the market in a Shikara (water taxi), gushed to TSI.

It is said that the rowing market first attracted attention globally when a photographed feature of the market was published in Japan in 1960. Congress scion Rahul Gandhi had also made a sudden visit to the market, on a visit to the Valley in September, 2011. The Dal farmers and the vendors were surprised to see him amidst them. They used the opportunity to share their problems related to trade with Rahul Gandhi. “Rahul Ji patiently listened to us; he briefly stayed at the house of a farmer, and had Kashmiri Kahwa (green tea) too,” recalls Wani, who was also around when Rahul’s father and former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi had come visiting in 1984.

Celebrities and dignitaries can be easily imagined to be humbled by the natural glamour of the Dal Lake, referred to as the ‘jewel in the crown of Kashmir’. Add that earthly touch lent by the quiet chaos of the floating market, and one can go Hami Asto all over again…