Lessons From Recession Will Help SMEs’ Future Roadmap

  • Learning lessons from recession important for future upswing.
  • SMEs should graduate from growth by default to growth by design.
  • SME Credit rating can act as bridge between SMEs and lending institutions.

New Delhi, 30 November 2009:The issue of raising a robust tech-aligned SME in India came in for intensive discussion at the “Envisioning the Wired SME” conference, organized by The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) and IndiaMART.com, at the Sheraton, Saket, in New Delhi on Saturday.

Discussing the issue of propelling the growth of SMEs in a focused session, Mr. Rakesh Rewari, Deputy Managing Director, SIDBI, who also chaired the session, noted, “Despite the recession, the Indian SME has been able to produce winners in the midst of a global slowdown, because they largely do not have any capital expenditure or big buck spends.” Exhorting SMEs to learn from their showing in the past two years and prepare for the post-recession upswing, Rewari said, “Product diversification and tapping the overseas market will always allow an SME to sustain its value and grow faster.” Panelists for the session included Praful Jain, Head, Enterprise Practice, Markets, KPMG, R. Ganesh, Deputy General Manager, ICICI Bank and Parag Patki, CEO, SME Rating Agency of India.

Addressing the importance of growth, at a time many SMEs have managed to make a standing for themselves in the market, Praful Jain, Head, Enterprise Practice, Markets, KPMG, emphasized on the criticality of courage and conviction and a dire need to innovate, which would go a long way in overcoming resource crunch, something that plagues almost every SME. “With a problem-solving approach, if SMEs can use their existing resources judiciously, there is a conscious effort required to convert growth by default into growth by design. That will become a pillar for its growth.”

Addressing the need gap of SMEs’ needing small funding, R. Ganesh, Deputy General Manager of ICICI Bank, underlined the bank’s commitment to SMEs, which gets addressed by a separate dedicated SME unit, which addresses the needs of SMEs, which are not big enough to attract the attention of venture capital funds or angel investors. Asking SMEs to become more transparent and accountable for better credit support, Ganesh said, “There are limitations. Banks are extremely conscious about an SME’s transaction history, and that is where most SMEs cannot sail through.”

Parag Palki, CEO, SME Rating Agency of India, outlined the gradually increasing significance of a credit rating regime, which helps SMEs liaise with banks and funding agencies, by proving their credentials. “The mission is to act as a bridge between SMEs and lending institutions. A good rating will automatically aid and support an SME’s growth story.”

About IndiaMART.com

IndiaMART.com is India’s largest online B2B marketplace connecting global buyers with suppliers through business directories, online product catalogs, buy-sell offers, industry specific marketplaces, printed media and trade shows participation.

Founded in 1996, the company has a presence in over 100 cities pan-India. With approximately 1000 employees, IndiaMART.com offers an extensive range of value-added products and services to over 500,000 members and over 5 million global buyers across industries and verticals.

IndiaMART.com has won numerous awards over the years including Red Herring 100 Asia & Emerging India and the company has been widely covered by media such as CNBC, BBC, BusinessMoney, CNN, Businessworld, Economic Times, Financial Express, etc. Its existing investors include Intel Capital and Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd (Times Group), India’s largest print media group.

Indiamart.Com Appoints Quasar As Its Digital Agency On Record

New Delhi, 7 September 2009: IndiaMART.com, India’s largest online B2B marketplace, has appointed Quasar as its digital agency on record. It will be responsible for IndiaMART’s digital marketing campaigns, media planning and media buying. Quasar, which is a WPP company, has been selected after a vigorous multi-agency pitch.

IndiaMART.com connects global buyers with suppliers through business directories, online product catalogs, buy-sell offers, industry specific marketplaces, printed media and trade shows participation. IndiaMART.com has been ranked India’s No. 1 online B2B marketplace by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) in its recent study done on Information, Communication & Technology (ICT) usage among Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). The independent market research, with special focus on online B2B marketplaces, accords over 85 percent preference for IndiaMART among B2B suppliers who go online, and who were interviewed by IAMAI. The study also states a 60 per cent market share for IndiaMART.com in India.

Mr. Dinesh Agarwal, Founder and CEO, IndiaMART.com said, “Being the most effective, accountable and transparent media for our business, Internet is an integral part of our marketing mix in reaching out to our target audience. With the emergence of social media, we are looking at Internet in a big way to consolidate our leadership position further. Quasar has shown sound understanding of our business and proposed scalable and performance driven solutions. Their proven expertise in the space will help us in reaching out to our target audience more comprehensively and effectively.”

Quasar Media has Microsoft, Monster.com, VISA, Kingfisher Airlines, Maruti Suzuki, GE and MakeMyTrip.com in its client list and is one of India’s largest digital services agency. “We recognize IndiaMART’s leadership in the digital B2B space and I am sure Quasar’s vast knowledge and leadership in digital services will create a successful partnership in achieving IndiaMART’s continued leadership in the B2B space”, says Mr. Deven Dharamdasani, Business Director, Quasar.

About IndiaMART.com

IndiaMART.com is India’s largest online B2B marketplace connecting global buyers with suppliers through business directories, online product catalogs, buy-sell offers, industry specific marketplaces, printed media and trade shows participation.

Founded in 1996, the company has a presence in over 100 cities pan-India. With approximately 1000 employees, IndiaMART.com offers an extensive range of value-added products and services to over 500,000 members and over 5 million global buyers across industries and verticals.

IndiaMART.com has won numerous awards over the years including Red Herring 100 Asia & Emerging India and the company has been widely covered by media such as CNBC, BBC, BusinessMoney, CNN, Businessworld, Economic Times, Financial Express, etc. Its existing investors include Intel Capital and Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd (Times Group), India’s largest print media group.

For more information, please visit: www.indiamart.com/press-section/

About Quasar

Quasar Media, part of Smile Interactive Group is one of the leading digital media services companies in India. It has a strong base of media services and technology. Committed to drive the digital media industry in the country it has a capability to give 360 degree services to client in the area of Digital Advertising. Digital advertising is expected to be a USD 560 million industry by 2009 with over 7% market share of the total advertising.

For more information, please visit: www.quasar.co.in

IndiaMART.com, Naukri.com chiefs speak on winning through economic crisis

•TiE hosts panel discussion for stalwarts of Indian online industry.

New Delhi, India, Friday, January 31, 2009: IndiaMART.com founder and CEO, Dinesh Agarwal, Smile Interactive’s Chief Mentor, Mahendra Swarup, Contest2Win founder, Alok Kejriwal and Info Edge Ltd MD & CEO, Mr Sanjeev Bikhchandani – all stalwarts in their field, recently came together on to a common platform – an event organized by The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) hosted at the India Habitat Centre on 30th January in New Delhi.

The event was attended by a majority of aspiring entrepreneurs, start-up enthusiasts and venture capitalists. Speaking on ‘Surviving and Winning in a Downturn’, a panel discussion, an optimistic Dinesh Agarwal said, “The online business is about serving your customers well, at the right price, and despite all break down. And when the markets are facing mayhem, you must choose to pounce on latent opportunities by realigning your approach and rethinking your strategies.”

Using his vast experience over the past decade, Sanjeev Bikhchandani – known for his famous portal Naukri.com said, “One should assume that there will be no funding and then decide to go ahead with their start-up. Rather than focusing on dream projects, it’s imperative to emphasize on returns in the next quarter or within the current year. If your project does not guarantee returns so early, then one needs to realign the marketing and distribution strategies.”

Hosted by The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), the event brought together leaders who have seen the resurgence of the internet after the dotcom burst and emerged winners; and promising entrepreneurs who believe in the commercial potential of the Internet. Answering a question as to whether a business should opt for online, offline or hybrid model, Mr Agarwal said that it depends entirely upon the type of business model in practice and the strategies in effect at that particular time, considering prevailing market scenario.

Fielding a question as to the right time to start a new venture, an optimistic Mahendra Swarup said that if he could afford to start a company, he would do it now, in the downturn, as it is the best time to go ahead with any new kind of start up.

Dinesh Agarwal added, “Sun Tzu writes in his book The Art of War, ‘when in peace, be at war’. It’s true; recession is really the time when you can gather all the ammunition you will need once things improve”. The technocrat started IndiaMART.com in 1996, survived the dotcom burst in 2001, and is today running India’s largest online B2B marketplace.

Also brought to the table were case studies of companies that stayed afloat during the burst, and what was learnt from their experiences.

About IndiaMART.com
IndiaMART.com is India’s largest online B2B marketplace. It connects Indian suppliers with international and domestic buyers through business directories, online product catalogs, buy-sell offers, printed media and trade shows participation.

Founded in 1996, the company has a presence in over 100 cities pan-India. With approximately 1000 employees, IndiaMART.com offers an extensive range of value-added products and services to over 500,000 members and over 5 million global buyers across industries and verticals.

IndiaMART.com has won numerous awards over the years including Red Herring 100 Asia & Emerging India and the company has been widely covered by media such as CNBC, BBC, BusinessMoney, CNN, Businessworld, Economic Times, Financial Express, etc.

About TiE
The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), was founded in 1992 in Silicon Valley by a group of successful entrepreneurs, corporate executives, and senior professionals with roots in the Indus region. There are currently over 12,000 members and more than 1,800 charter members in 52 chapters across 11 countries. TiE’s mission is to foster entrepreneurship globally through mentoring, networking, and education. Dedicated to the virtuous cycle of wealth creation and giving back to the community, TiE’s focus is on generating and nurturing our next generation of entrepreneurs.

Besides its flagship event, TiECon–the largest professional conference for entrepreneurs, TiE now has a wide range of programs including Special Interest Groups (SIGs), TiE Institute, Deal Flow Meetings, TiE Young Entrepreneurs, and, most recently, TiE Women’s Forum and CEO Forum.

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