Indian IT CEOs are shuffling decks on the Titanic

Now I am ready to declare the end of the line for Indian IT. There are new $100 billion opportunities that could revitalize this industry. But from what I’ve seen, Indian executives seem incapable of steering their ships in the right directions.

It is not that Indian outsourcers have become less capable of servicing Western needs. It is that their customer base—the CIO and IT department—is in decline. With the advent of tablets, apps, and cloud computing, users have direct access to better technology than their IT departments can provide them. They can download cheap, elegant, and powerful apps on their IPads that make their corporate systems look primitive. These modern-day apps don’t require internal teams of people doing software development and maintenance—they are user-customizable and can be built by anyone with basic programming skills.

It takes decades to update legacy computer systems, and corporate IT departments move at the speed of molasses. So, Indian outsourcers have a few more years before they suffer a significant decline. They certainly won’t see the growth and billion-dollar outsourcing deals that have brought them this far.

The same advances that are changing the IT landscape are also creating new opportunities.

For example, advances in robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), and 3D printing are making it cost effective to move manufacturing back from China to the U.S., Europe, …and India.

Take the Baxter robot from Rethink Robotics. It has two arms, a face that displays simulated emotion, and cameras and sensors that detect the motion of human beings that work next to it. It can perform assembly and move boxes—just as humans do. It will work 24 hours a day and not complain. It costs only $22,000. This is one of many such robots

A type of manufacturing called “additive manufacturing” is making it possible to cost-effectively “print” products. 3D printers can create physical mechanical devices, medical implants, jewelry, and even clothing. The cheapest 3D printers, which print rudimentary objects, currently sell for between $500 and $1000. Soon we will have printers for this price that can print toys and household goods. By the end of this decade, we will see 3D printers doing the small-scale production of previously labor-intensive crafts and goods. In the next decade we may be 3D-printing buildings and electronics.

In my discussions with Indian CEOs, they all acknowledge the reality. They are becoming aware of what lies ahead. I have implored them to start retraining their people in the new technologies and to develop new businesses and consulting practices. They listen, nod their heads from side to side, and go back to trying to close the disappearing software-outsourcing deals. I tell them that they are shuffling deck chairs on the Titanic.-wrote Vivek Wadhwa,Fellow at Stanford University


Ratnakar Bank:David Vs The Goliaths

(Disclosure:I am market making in Ratnakar Bank)

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Ratnakar Bank is amongst 10 Most Preferred Banks by Indians in 2013

(Disclaimer:I am market making in Ratnakar Bank)

Many financial institutions are gearing up to attract users by offering many incredible services be it loans with low interest rates or saving options upon shopping among many others. But only few succeeded in this rush hour of best banking services offered to the users. Here are the 10 best banks in India that were most preferred by the users in 2013as compiled by Yahoo Finance.

  1. Axis Bank
  2. HDFC Bank
  3. JP Morgan Chase
  4. IDBI Bank
  5. Bank of Tokyo
  6. Bank of America
  7. Deutsche Bank
  8. HSBC Bank
  9. Ratnakar Bank
  10. Bank of Nova Scotia


Excerpts This is India !

Psst…want a job with Animal Special Police?

This post belongs to my This is India ! series (see here)

On December 14, Selva Doss (42), his wife and two children tried to self-immolate in front of the TNCC office demanding Jayanthi Natarajan return Rs 33 lakh collected by members of her personal staff after promising jobs in the department of Animal Special Police, a non-existent force under the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests.


Interestingly, Selva Doss had been arrested by the Chennai Police in January along with a gang which was led by OS Bavani Babu on charges of swindling job aspirants to the tune of Rs 30 crore. The racket promised young job seekers posts of Inspectors, Sub-Inspectors and Constables in the ASP. The post of Inspector was available to those who were ready to shell out Rs 6 lakh. The post of a Sub-Inspector cost Rs 5 lakh while the Constable’s post was offered at a price of Rs 4 lakh. The arrests were made following complaints from the Animal Welfare Board of India office-bearers.

Though the report was widely published across Tamil Nadu, the racket led by Babu continued their “dream run” all over the State. Kannan, brother-in-law of Selva Doss told The Pioneer that the gang was helped by some members of the personal staff of Gayatri Devi, officer on special duty to Natarajan. “Gayatri’s brother Yuvaraj and her secretary Dina were involved in this operation. They collected Rs 33 lakh from friends of Selva Doss on promising jobs in the ASP,” said Kannan.

Since the job seekers did not get any letters of appointment from the ASP, they started tormenting Selva Doss and his family. Doss had no other alternative but to take his family to the TNCC office and threatened that they would commit suicide if the party leaders do not help him in getting the money back. He submitted a petition to BS Gnanadesikan, the TNCC president who promised help. It is said that Gnanadesikan forwarded the complaint filed by Doss to the Congress high command.

Party insiders in TNCC laughed at reports that Jayanthi Natarajan is quitting the Council of Ministers to concentrate on party work. “The party leadership might have offered an easy way out for her before the Selva Doss issue snowballs into a major scam,” said a senior TNCC leader, who also said that there were many complaints about Gayatri Devi.-from DailyPioneer

Excerpts Gold

What Jim Rogers learnt from Indians

Jim Rogers said:

“Everybody should have some of their assets outside of their own country, whatever their own country is as an insurance policy if nothing else.
“Everybody has life insurance, fire insurance, health insurance, car insurance, and you hope you never use your health insurance policy, you hope you lose money on it. Well that’s the same thing about having some of your assets outside your own country. You hope you never need it, but it is terribly good insurance. Because every country in world has had economic upheavals at one time or another.
“Then everybody should have some real assets. [Held overseas] they are a very good safeguard. Whatever kind of safeguard you’ve got, whether it’s gold, silver, farmland, silos full of rice, everyone should have some kind of assets that will come through an economic upheaval.”-from Goldnews
Indians have been buying gold for eons as a form of insurance and a safeguard against economic upheavals.Also, it is the most practical way for an ordinary Indian to invest in an international asset.
Western “gurus” are realizing it only now.Now when will the Indian Govt. realize it?