Creating content

The success of this issue could see the RBL Bank also speed up its listing.

The healthy way

Delhi-based Best Foods, a ?2,400 crore company (chairman: M.P. Jindal) engaged in the production of pack­aged basmati rice is planning to make a big splash in the domestic market.

The company which has 18 factories processing rice is planning to increase its retail outlets from 250 to at least 350 across India in the current fiscal, by investing in health and wellness stores. A differential pricing strategy to promote rice in retail packs rang­ing from ?90-200 per kg are sought to be sold in these outlets. Promot­ing rice along with nuts and honey, the company is planning to dispel rumours that eating rice is unhealthy and also demonstrate the right ways of cooking rice. The company plans to build up a national presence.

Headless

institutions

The government’s move to lure private sector talent to fill up the numerous vacancies in PSU banks has apparently not met with the desired level of suc­cess. Many of the big jobs includ­ing finding a CEO for the BRICS bank, debt management office proposed in the budget by the finance minis­ter, Arun Jaitely, are vacant. Besides Punjab National Bank and a few oth­ers are also vacant and if reports are to be believed even some of the larger banks’ posts will also be vacant post May. Some of the posts in IREDA are also likely to remain vacant. One of the reasons for the private sector pussy-footing over taking up jobs in PSUs is the fear of reporting to some babus in New Delhi and taking ver­bal instructions from them. The gov­ernment, it is learnt, may soon step in aggressively in a bid to resolve some of these concerns as the post of BRICS Bank is too prestigious to leave open for a long period of time.

Going online

Kewal Kiran Clothing Ltd (KKCL), with a good collection of affordable and aspirational brands (Killer, Integriti, Lawman and Easies), is going through some challenging times. Although it is in the fastest growing fashion apparel segment, it has suffered due to a lacklustre demand environment for apparels and an onslaught of online retailers offering attractive dis­counted merchandise. Consequently, though its top line has grown by 9 per cent in the first nine months, its earn­ings are marginally down by 3 per cent in the same period. According to a source, KKCL is aggressively looking at the online model to boost sales, as the recovery in consumer sentiment sets in. Meanwhile, the company has a strong balance sheet (zero debt with net cash accruals at ?215 crore; consti­tuting 10 per cent of the market cap).

Reliance in Korea

ADAG-promoted Reliance AMC, where Nippon has a stake, is planning to strengthen its ties with Samsung Asset Management. If reports are to be believed a strategic tie-up to cross promote Reliance products in Korea and vice-versa may soon become reality. In which case it may not be long before we see more Korean money flowing into the Indian fund which currently has ^1,37,000 crore assets under management.*

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Niche

platforms

Phone accessories market in India is growing along with the growth in the sales of per­sonal devices such as smart­phones, tablets, etc. Although these accessories are available on e-commerce marketplaces, there are companies selling a particular accessory. Niche

(•) dailyobjects

vertical e-commerce plat­forms are coming up. Daily- objects.com, an e-commerce store sells only designer back covers of smartphones. It works with 50 designers and has 3,500 designs for more than 100 smartphones. Daily, on an average, it sells 350 back covers. DailyOb- jects has 50 per cent margin on these covers and it clocks
?1.5 crore turnover every month. It also sells on e-com­merce marketplaces.

Creating

content

Babyhugz.com, an e-com- merce store dedicated to baby care needs, offers both prod­ucts and content to provide information to new, young parents. The content, which is created to assist young par­ents, it claims, is the differ­entiator between itself and other players. The start-up has hired moms to create content, which is seamlessly integrated on the Website with the products. It sells baby products like apparel, skin care products, diapers and toys, baby essentials etc.

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Babyhugz has about 250,000 registered users since its launch in October 2014 and it sells 400-500 products daily. It has already raised seed funding of $350,000 and expects to break even in its fourth year of operations.

 

Weddings made easier

To make organising big fat Indian weddings easier, start-ups are ready to help you. There are wed­ding planners, list­ing Websites where various vendors are listed and then there’s a Website dedicated to vendors required for wed­dings. Wedding- plz.com, a one-stop Website for weddings has expanded in Mumbai. The start-up had begun its operations with

Delhi. It claims to have more than 25,000 vendors provid­ing services required for wed­dings listed on its Website across 42 categories viz. Wed­ding venues, caterers, bridal make-up artists, wedding bands, florists. The Web­site also has planning tools like budget manager, wed­ding checklist and options to create password-protected couple wedding Website. Contrary of popular percep­tion, it’s not a seasonal busi­ness. Because, according to Weddingplz, when its off­season for one reli­gion, its wedding season for another. It makes money through sponsored listings, lead genera­tion for its vendors, and earning com­mission on business given to vendors through the Website. In the next few months, it plans to expand to four cities. ♦

 

 

 

WEBWATCH

Preventing infiltration

Cyber attackers are infiltrating networks and evading detec­tion by hijacking the infrastructure of major corporations and using it against them, says Symantec. “Attackers don’t need to break down the door to a company’s network when the keys are readily available,” said Tarun Kaura, director, technology sales, India, Symantec. “We’re seeing attackers trick companies into infecting themselves by Trojanizing software updates to common programs and patiently wait­ing for their targets to download them – giving attackers unfettered access to the corporate network.”

Symantec research reveals that it took software companies an average of 59 days to create and roll out patches – up from only four days in 2013. Attackers took advantage of the delay and, in the case of Heartbleed, leapt to exploit the vulnerability within four hours. There were 24 total zero-day vulnerabilities discovered in 2014, leaving an open playing field for attackers to exploit known security gaps before they were patched.

Symantec observed that attackers are using stolen e-mail accounts from one cor­porate victim to spear-phish other victims higher up the food chain. Spear-phishing is a more highly targeted version of phishing, whichutilisese-mails to target users in the target company by appearing to originate from within the company – often from HR or IT departments or someone known to the user.

Risk of malware

Now, even new devices carry the risk of malware. The threat of pre-installed software on machines would be a com­mon source of spreading Adware in the next quarter and even the newly purchased machines would carry the risk of malware, Quick Heal Technologies has forecasted in its threat reports for the first quarter 2015. Adware is soft­ware that automatically displays or downloads advertising material such as banners or pop-ups, when a user is online. It can be designed to analyse which Internet sites the user visits and to present adver­tising pertinent to the types of goods or services featured there.

“We have, over the years, witnessed an increas­ing number of Ransomware and Adware cases across both Android and Windows platforms,” says Sanjay Kat- kar, CTO, Quick Heal Tech nologies. “In recent times Ransomware has evolvec some more with the help of different fil formats and social engineering tricks that a being used to increase its reach and impact.” Ransomware is a type of malicious softwa designed to block access to a computer system or device until money demanded by the hack is paid.

 

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