For those looking to avail of stem-cell banking, LifeCell offers top-of-the line services with easy payment options.

India is today a much sought after destination for medical tourism and stem-cell banking is emerging as the newest addition that the country’s medical services have to offer. While the global medical tourism industry is currently pegged at $21 billion, India’s stem-cell banking business is predicted to grow more than 35% over the next year to Rs.140 crore, according to the Delhi-based Stem Cell Global Foundation. In fact, for a relatively new-fangled concept in health care, stem-cell banking is catching on fast and is becoming popular even in the small towns and cities of India.

Found in all multicellular organisms present in the body, stem cells are undifferentiated or ‘blank’ cells that possess the ability to divide and differentiate into several specialised cells and can regenerate to produce dead or lost cells. First identified in the mid-19th century, the extensive research on stem cells has long created ripples in the medical community. It has been found that stem cells could potentially cure diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, diabetes, as well as burns and spinal cord injuries, and they are already being used to treat leukemia and various heart diseases.

The growing popularity of stem-cell banking in India is thanks to companies such as the Chennai-based LifeCell, India’s first private umbilical cord blood and tissue stem cell bank. Started in 2004, LifeCell’s biggest initial challenge was creating awareness of this concept. Being amongst the first to enter the country with umbilical cord blood stem cell banking, LifeCell had the responsibility of educating more than commencing banking operations and that was its focus for the initial years. The challenge became tougher when it realised that even the medical fraternity was not familiar with the concept of stem cell banking. “As a corporate, LifeCell feels a sense of responsibility towards society, and has undertaken the initiative to educate the public, as well as the medical fraternity on the benefits of stem cell therapy. It has also set up a stem cell therapy centre to provide aid to the poor through clinical assistance,” says the company’s President & Executive Director Mayur Abhaya Srisrimal.

LifeCell’s incredible work in the field has earned it the trust of close to 32,000 clients today, a number that’s constantly growing, who have chosen to bank their baby’s cord blood stem cells with it. Currently, the market leader with a 40% share of the stem-cell banking market, LifeCell has expanded its presence to include over 80 cities nationwide. Its current revenues is Rs.50 crore, with a predicted growth of 40% year-on-year. “This is an extremely impressive growth when viewed from the perspective that we are operating in a niche segment with low awareness and with increasing competition every year,” says Abhaya. In spite of its impressive growth in recent years, the company is constantly trying to find new and innovative means to implement its outreach programmes. Its efforts to reach out to the medical fraternity, include regular continuous medical education (CME) programmes, which educate doctors on the latest developments in the stem cell industry.

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Source : IIPM Editorial, 2012

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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They gave India many firsts starting from national digital maps to online portals offering interactive maps. Here's what made them sucessful.

“In the year 1994, a whole year before Larry Page was to meet Sergey Brin, the very concept of having a digital map was unheard of let alone feasible. Google Maps, the web mapping service that the world today swears by, was still 11 years in the future. At that time there was an Indian entrepreneur couple - Rakesh and Rashmi Verma who had taken upon themselves the massive and pioneering task of mapping out all of India. The promoter couple who had just returned from USA after a 12 year stint with GM and IBM respectively, hit upon this idea in a chance interaction with the representatives of Mapinfo Software which was into developing tools for map creation and analysis. Thus took birth CE Info Systems popularly known by it’s brand - MapmyIndia.

Over the next 10 years, from 1994 to 2004, the company focused single-mindedly on compiling data for completing the India map product. But they began to realise that having high ambitions was not enough when they met with their first major challenge – financial constraints. Collating accurate geographical data for a country as big as India requires huge amount of investments and monetary commitment, something that posed a problem for them being a start-up entity. The other major challenge that stood before them was to find a way to keep the collated data continuously updated and relevant to the current times. The challenges were huge and even the most adventurous entrepreneurs would have caved in at this stage. However quitting was the last thing in the promoters mind. Instead they carved a radical plan, that if executed successfully could kill two birds with one stone. “The strategy to address these challenges was quite simple – provide enterprises with GIS solutions on top of the map data that added significant tangible benefits to their business operations and planning. In this way, the company was able to generate a revenue stream to drive future investments into building the map data. And because the enterprises were using it for their operations on a daily basis, they would provide the necessary feedback to ensure currency of the data”, explains Rohan Verma, Director, MapmyIndia (CE Info Systems).

With innovative ideas as these, its no wonder that they soon had their data collated and ready for use. A strong desire to propel India among elite countries where maps had substantially improved the quality of everyday life of people is what led CE Info Systems to introduce their first comprehensive B2C Digital Mapping website in the form of MapmyIndia.com to Indian consumers. Launched in September 2004, it became India’s first interactive maps and directions web portal.

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Source : IIPM Editorial, 2012

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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Tupperware India’s toughest challenge on day #1 was to convince the Indian housewife to replace metal with plastic. It did that. Rest is known.

Tupperware is a name that brings to mind multi-hued airtight plastic containers – used to store food items – and is a common sight across homes and stores in India. A common product so you’d think. It is. But it sells too – across more than 100 countries. Last year, the $3.21 billion-valued Tupperware Brands Corporation’s global revenues amounted to $2.3 billion. So for the uninformed, Tupperware is purely an American brand; to be more precise Florida-based. Invented 64 years back by the enterprising American tree surgeon and inventor, Earl Silas Tupper, a man known as much for his creativity, as for his many quirky ideas, Tupperware has become one of the most highly regarded household item brands in the world. And though the company is largely known as the pioneer of the formerly patented “burping seal” airtight plastic containers and microwave reheating utensils, it is in reality much more. It manufactures much more and sells them too.

Red carpets, honour guards and gun salutes – the shareholders of most multinational companies that made their way into the Indian market soon after liberalisation (and therefore made hay even before the Sun shone) would have nothing less than these gestures to thank the management board of their companies for the geographical-diversification decision made. Tupperware’s shareholders would do no different. So numerically, where does India fit into Tupperware’s growth scheme? It’s there in the top bracket, you could say. Tupperware India is amongst the top ten revenue-earning subsidiaries for the company. In fact, topline of the India business for the American grew by 50% during FY2010 – definitely quick growth. But it wasn’t just last year that the company took a leap. Tupperware has been at it since it entered the market with 1.2 billion Indians, six years back (in early 1996) – a CAGR of 30% in revenues since then, is some double-digit to boast about. The brand entered India with 12 products. Today, it sells more than 100 across 59 cities in the country and has a distributorship base of 89.

In this era of stiff competition where consumer-product companies are at loggerheads to prove their point and earn profits, the case study of Tupperware’s success is definitely an unusual teacher. The change in the look of kitchenware of ordinary middle class families in India is synonymous to the successful brand journey of Tupperware in the country. And it wasn’t an overnight dream come true. Before the company entered the market, women pan-India preferred to store food and other kitchen contents in metal containers. More importantly, the steel utensils market in India was a very cluttered and an unorganised one, with many strong regional players. In India, the company first introduced products that had already made a mark in US. Thus, until 2001, Indian consumers were bombarded with products like Wonderlier Bowl, Bowled over, Thirstquake, Within Reach Canisters et al. The products sold well, thanks to its penetration strategy-direct sales technique, which kept a check on prices and helped expand the brand’s consumer network. Considering the fact that then, a majority of Indian kitchens sported the shiny silver look, the very attempt of Tupperware to enter the segment was a sign of courage and conviction shown by the brand. Cut to the present, it has 50,000 women representatives selling everything from masala boxes and roti keepers to eco-friendly vegetable cutters (and the very soon to come water filters).

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Source : IIPM Editorial, 2012

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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Growth in the education and corporate sectors is expanding the market for stationery products and solo is counting on its marketing mix to deliver the gains.

Ask Amit Gupta, the Managing Director of Filex Systems (P) Ltd, a leading manufacturer and supplier of office stationery, what he thinks is the most important thing in the stationery business and his quick reply is: the way of dealing with both companies and individuals. “When you are in this business it is important to find the right partner if you want to tackle the big company sector for your office stationery.” For most big manufacturers of stationery products, finding large institutional and corporate buyers for their products is the holy grail of this business. Even though the stationery industry is showing signs of impressive growth as a result of tremendous increase in the demand for stationery products in India, this demand is largely being driven by the growth in the educational and industrial sectors. The national market for stationery products is estimated at Rs11,000 crore and is growing at 20% per annum.

With the increasing number of schools being built, the education sector is rapidly becoming an important target group for stationery manufacturers and retailers. School notebooks alone account for Rs4,000 crore (in terms of consumer spend). An analysis of the growth drivers for the stationery market points to the growth in the education sector, growth in the industrial sector and government initiatives as significant catalysts. India is an emerging economy with a huge population base. Rising income levels coupled with the government’s impetus on educating the masses is leading to the development of the stationery market. Rising literacy rate is a chief pointer towards growth in the education sector. Additionally, it has been observed that many global companies have been setting up facilities in India while domestic players continue to expand operations due to favourable market scenarios. While growth in education will affect demand for school stationery products, industrial sector growth will drive demand for office stationery products.

About 70% of the industry’s revenue is through the sale of paper office stationery products. These include envelopes, computer paper, notebooks, folders, business forms, loose-leaf binders, social stationery, scrapbooks and other products. These products are purchased from office stationery manufacturers and distributed to retailers or directly to industrial and commercial customers. End customers include business and home offices, students, government agencies and schools. Gupta’s Filex Systems, which operates under the brand umbrella of Solo, offers a gamut of office accessories ranging from files and folders, paper boards to notebooks and desktop and laptop accessories.

The Delhi-based company started in a small way in 1996 with an initial start-up capital of Rs2 crore but has now become a leading manufacturer of a diverse range of office products and IT accessories. The company has been registering a 25% growth over the last few years but the big turning point came in 2008 when it diversified into manufacturing and retailing laptop accessories. “Solo has been on an innovation streak with product evolution continuously keeping pace with the changing demands as per the market trends,” says Gupta. While the company says its endeavour has always been to offer quality products having better functionality depending upon the usage of the product for the ultimate consumer, it has also been making some smart marketing moves to drive business and amplify its customer base. By analysing the way its customers choose and use products, it has tried building up distinct consumer profiles by segregating customers in terms of their needs and product requirements. “Your job in this business is half done if a customer is able to identify your brand when he decides on buying a stationery product. When a consumer thinks of buying a stationery product, your brand should immediately strike him for its quality and value,” says Gupta.

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Source : IIPM Editorial, 2012

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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The values of the Indus valley civilization are the rallying points for Brand IndusInd. These values are Innovation, excellence and timeless modernity – something they try to live up to in every single interaction with their stakeholders.

They say that every brand draws its strengths from certain founding myths. And IndusInd Bank – the first of the new-generation private banks in India – is no different. Historical narratives inform us that the Indus Valley civilization was the very pinnacle of its times. Their town planning, infrastructure design and cultural richness has been deemed without a parallel. Well, that’s where the brand IndusInd claim to draw its inspiration from.

In fact, the philosophy or the founding myth seems to have worked well for IndusInd Bank. Rather, it has been the pivot that hinges its branding and product efforts. “The values of the IndusInd civilization are the rallying points for brand IndusInd. These values are innovation, driven by excellence, and a certain timeless modernity – something we try to live up to in every single interaction with our partners, consumers and the community at large,” Mohit Ganju, SVP and Head – Marketing & Communication, IndusInd Bank tells 4Ps B&M.

It all started when Srichand P. Hinduja, a leading non-resident Indian businessman and head of the Hinduja Group, conceived the vision of a new-generation private bank through collective contributions from the NRI community towards India’s economic and social development. Although IndusInd Bank formally started operations in April 1994 (with a capital base of Rs.1 billion, of which Rs.600 million was raised through private placement from Indian residents while the balance Rs.400 million was contributed by non-resident Indians), like most of its counterparts the bank was not much into planned marketing and communication until late 90s. While 2000 and ahead saw a few private sector banks laying importance to innovative techniques of marketing, IndusInd Bank continue to believe in very basic marketing and advertising strategies. In fact, most of the communication was meant for existing set of customers.

However, the scenario flipped completely in FY2008-09. A change in management at IndusInd Bank (in 2008 new management team headed by Romesh Sobti was inducted from ABN AMRO Bank) led to restructuring. From a docile brand, IndusInd Bank suddenly started getting aggressive by positioning itself as an important player in the financial sector. The real turning point was when the brand arrived at its new positioning platform of ‘Responsive Innovation’ and the 2010 ad campaign supported with a 360 degree integrated marketing approach. And they have stick to that philosophy since then.

Humour is often considered as the safest way to grab consumers’ mind space, but passing the right message across following this route is also the toughest. Though the Indian banking industry in particular has tried its bit in being humorous in its ad-approach over the past few years, the series of commercials from IndusInd Bank are perhaps a trend breaker. While ‘Mr. & Mrs. Chowgle’ campaign (featuring Omi Vaidya aka Chatur of 3 Idiots fame) surely created a lot of buzz in the Indian ad-world, the bank only strengthen it further with its advertising campaign featuring actor Ranvir Shorey. Certainly both the commercial were clutter-breaking, which delivered the message in an endearing fashion. The 360-degree integrated marketing campaign featured Choice Money ATM, Check-on-Cheque, and 365 days Banking service. “The three series ad campaign was the most successful campaign of ours in terms of achieving objectives of enhanced brand awareness and positioning us as a modern, innovative and responsive service brand,” Ganju tells 4Ps B&M. Banking advertising is a category where a handful of drivers play a disproportionately large role. “Trust, word of mouth, and recommendation constitute the core emotional dynamics of the consumer – category relationship,” adds Ganju.
 
IndusInd realises that a banking brand needs more than clever communication to distinguish itself from the competition. Agrees Ganju as he tells 4Ps B&M, “One of the challenges of competing in a category like banking is that the big boys out shout you on every conceivable communication platform.” The brand’s vision was thus crafted in harmony with its then communication partner – RKS BBDO. They differentiated their brand on all there levels of existence – at the product level, at the service and experience level and at the personality level.

IndusInd not only took several initiatives to build the brand, but also focused on ways to enhance its visibility. Right from changing the colour of its branch signages to attaining visibility by putting up ATMs in high traffic areas to launching client engagement initiatives, the bank has continuously been undertaking key value propositions to stay ahead of the competition.

For more articles, Click on IIPM Article

Source : IIPM Editorial, 2012

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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IIPM ranked No 1 B-School in India
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Arindam Chaudhuri: We need Hazare's leadership
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