Tag Archives: innovation

How the world’s cheapest ($35) Android tablet is ‘Made in India’

The new Aakash android tablet has shaken up the tablet industry primarily because of it’s price point: $35. Aimed at students, the tablet is being regarded as a innovative example both in global tablet industry and in the aid industry, where it’s being seen as an alternative to the controversial $100 One Laptop Per Child device. The Aakash tablet is being marketed as a “Made in India” success story in hopes of championing India’s manufacturing industry. In this video Suneet Singh Tuli, CEO of UK-based tablet makers Datawind, speaks about the making of the Aakash and how they managed to keep the manufacturing price so low in India. The Aakash be sold as the DataWind Ubislate as of November 2011.

Kraft Foods’ 7 step model for focus and winning in emerging markets

Kraft

A few weeks ago, HSM, the company behind the upcoming 2011 World Innovation Forum in New York City hosted a conversation with Sanjay Khosla, President of Kraft Foods’ Developing Markets division. Mr. Khosla leads Kraft’s $13.6 billion businesses in developing markets, specifically the Asia Pacific; Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa; and Latin America regions. In the last three years, the size of Kraft Foods’ developing markets business has more than doubled with $13.6 billion in annual revenues. If Kraft Foods’ developing markets business was a standalone company, it would be one of the top 10 food companies on the planet. The company’s developing markets business realized nearly 13% revenue growth on average annually and reported operating income growth of more than 34% on average annually (2006 – 2010). During the hou long conversation, Mr. Khosla gave the attendees a rare look inside the company’s strategies in evaluating, and developing new and old products to suit emerging markets. 

He also shared how he put his obsession of “Winning through Focus” into practice to turn Kraft Foods’ underperforming developing markets business into a top tier performer. Mr. Khosla’s “Seven step model to drive growth and win through focus in emerging markets” are:

  1. Discovery: Find out what works
  2. Strategy: Focus through lenses
  3. Vision: Find a simple hook
  4. People: Unleash the Potential
  5. Execution: Clarify and delegate
  6. Organization: Build collaborative networks
  7. Metrics: Manage numbers and tell stories

Here are my notes from the conversation with Kraft Food’s Sanjay Khosla:

  • choose what NOT to do
  • focus on few and do well
  • choose space where company has competitive market
  • choose lenses
  • Kraft chose to focus on 5 categories, 10 brands, and 10 markets in emerging economies
  • 4 yrs ago they looked at acquiring Cadbury and Danone biscuits
  • both brands were doing well in emerging markets
  • Focus to unleash the potential of peop
  • Match company people with priorities
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Most Innovative (BRIC) Companies of 2011

Fast_company_innovative_companies

If you haven’t already read through the 2011 list of Fast Company Magazine’s “World’s Most Innovative Companies” make sure you do. It’s a wonderful and inspiring list. Here is a sublist of FastCompany.com’s most innovative BRIC companies of  2011:

 

BRAZIL

01) Azul – For converting bus riders into frequent fliers.

03) Petrobras – For becoming the world leader in ultra-deepwater drilling.

05) Embrapa – For pioneering innovations in tropical agriculture.

06) Gerdau – For responding with speed and smarts to shifts in the market for steel.

07) Natura – For growing a green empire with Brazilian flora.

08) Embraer – For challenging the outsourcing model in the aviation industry

09) Metalfrio Solutions – For identifying and exploiting a profitable niche

10) Solar Ear – For making hearing aids affordable.

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Notes on leadership and innovation from 2010 World Business Forum (my notes)

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Recently I was honored to have been able to attend The World Business Forum, an annual business conference featuring some of today’s most influential business and leadership luminaries. The event, held at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, featured 18+ speakers – including Al Gore, Jack Welch, Vijay Govindarajan, and Charlene Li – covering a range of business topics from social media to innovation to government. As a featured blogger – along with writers from The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post – I watched and listened for two days as global business leaders shared their insights on stage. I’ve outlined portions of my speaker notes for you to read below. You can also read through the archive of on-the-spot tweets from myself and fellow attendees in the #WBF10 Twitter stream for more context.

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Innovation shifted to China during global economic downturn

The Huffington Post reports:

As much of the world invested fewer resources in innovation during the global downturn, Chinese firms spent more on innovative efforts, such as R&D and patent and trademark applications, according to a report by a UN agency.

On Wednesday, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) said that patent applications in China jumped 18.2 percent in 2008 and another 8.5 percent in 2009. Over the same period, ZTE, China’s second-largest telecom equipment maker, boosted R&D spending 44.8 percent.