Archive for August, 2008

I’m sure that on hearing the word aperture all sorts of thoughts regarding Physics come to some of our minds. Don’t worry, I’m not planning to discuss any Science in this post.
But it’s about another aspect of aperture, and that’s the modern digital camera or DG-CAM as many of us call it. You would be amazed to see how the true beauty of any object can be enhanced with digital editing, yes I mean software like Photoshop.I’m sure we all agree that the olden day cameras have become antiques and the photo rolls have all become a thing of the past. Digital cameras are better, cheaper and have a much higher utility.With digital pictures,came the idea of photo editing, which has created whole new avenues to explore for the photography-lovers.
Now you’re wondering,Why am I talking about all this on an IIMI blog?? Well, I hope my previous post “Beyond Acads @ Planet-I” gave you a taste of our extra-curricular activities. But that post was just the beginning.You would be amazed to see the numerous talented photographers we have on campus, hiding under the Managerial veil.But, “Aperture” has set out to discover and kindle the dormant passion inside participants at Planet-I.
Aperture is a club run by a few people on campus who are enthusiastic about photography.This club conducts workshops and competitions for anyone who may be interested.In the past, there have been “Best Pic of the Month” competitions and the response has been phenomenal.Another thing which Aperture has done is that it has brought out the beauty of our serene campus which will be evident from some of the photos I’ve posted below.I’ve mentioned the name of the participant who has contributed the snap below each photo.I’m sure you’ll agree that all of them should get a big round of applause and some comments from viewers..Love to hear your views. Hats off to you guys!!

For Full-size view,click on the pic… 🙂

Photographed by : Rakesh T. (Batch of 2010)

Photographed by : Kishan Kariappa (Batch of 2010)

Photographed by : Rakesh T. (Batch of 2010)

Photographed by : Rishi Ramesh Pathak (Batch of 2010)

Photographed by : Rakesh T. (Batch of 2010)

Photographed by : Kishan Kariappa (Batch of 2010)

Photographed by : Rakesh T. (Batch of 2010)

Photographed by : Rakesh T. (Batch of 2010)


India’s FMCG sector has finally proved to be one of the front-runners in India’s growth marathon. During the past few years, this sector has shown shocking double-digit growth figures. According to a survey conducted by FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry), sales will grow by 16% to 9.52 trillion during this fiscal year as compared to 14.5% growth in the previous year. The survey attributes this growth to factors such as increased literacy, rising aspiration levels, growing consumer demand, etc.

The industry’s future prospects look bright, seeing the rising incomes and the modernisation of retail. However studies have shown that there is still a large amount of untapped potential in this field and possibilities to grow further.

Main Drivers for Growth in FMCG:-

1. Higher Consumer spending –
The per capita disposable income of people in both urban as well as rural areas has seen a good rise in the past few years. Differential pricing has helped consumers from all economic demographics experiment with new products based on their needs and abilities. A prominent shift has been seen from consumer electronics to other consumer goods such as cosmetics, soaps & detergents, etc. Most FMCG players have been targeting the consumer’s needs and converting these into strategies and final products.

2. Benefits of Organization in Retail FMCG –
Organised retail has been a boon for both the consumers as well as suppliers. This is evident from the success of recent retail players that have entered the market such as Reliance Fresh, Big Bazaar, More, etc. For suppliers, especially farmers, organised retail allows them to receive better prices for their produce. For consumers, the benefits include ease of shopping, better comparison of products, good ambience, etc. But the most important factor is that consumers spend more on a product’s value and less is wasted in services such as distribution.

3. Penetration –
FMCG majors have been looking to penetrate the mostly untapped rural as well as semi-urban areas of India. To achieve this, they have planned to implement better distribution networks. According to Asschom, FMCG will witness more than 50% of its growth in the rural and semi-urban segments by 2010. In the urban regions, due to cut throat competition FMCG players have gone in for other promotional strategies such as branding, product differentiation, package innovation, highlighting the functional aspect of foods, etc. The development of better and faster means of transport will increase FMCG penetration in the long term.

4. Indian competitiveness and global market –
India has an advantage over other nations in FMCG due to certain reasons, such as
a) Easy and cheap availability of various raw materials
b) Cheap labour
c) Spread of Indian companies across the complete value chain

5. Shift of demand from unbranded to branded goods –
Consumers have become more aware of the benefits of branded commodities in food, clothing, toiletries, etc. This has resulted in a willingness to shell out more money for such products.

Trends that may be expected in FMCG over next few years –

1. Inclination towards environment-friendly goods –
Consumers are expected to appreciate socially responsible trade. This shall lead to a move towards products with ingredients that can be replenished and more natural/herbal cosmetics and skin care products.

2. Use of more technology –
The coming years will see a greater amount of e-marketing and blogging for promotion of goods. IT is expected to help in consumer-tracking as well as Supply Chain Management.

3. More goods catering to the youth –
With the increase in youth population in India, the FMCG sector is trying to come up with more products which appeal to this class of consumers. This will include more branding of commodities such as clothing, cosmetics and other accessories.

4. Health food categories –
This mainly targets the health-conscious, rich urban Indian. Some goods already existent in this segment are skimmed milk, diet soft drinks, multigrain bread, sugar-free, etc.

5. Inflation impacts –
FMCG majors are coming up with various measures to combat the double digit inflation. These measures include repositioning of product lines, variant packaging, strengthening distribution and logistics, etc.

If FMCG is GOD, who are the ANGELS??
Yes, I’m talking about the big FMCG players in India that have brought this sector into the limelight. Some of them are listed below in order of their net worth. Each company is a leader in their respective sector.
1. Hindustan Unilever Ltd.
2. ITC (Indian Tobacco Company)
3. Nestle’ India
4. Amul
5. Dabur India
6. Asian Paints
7. Cadbury India
8. Brittania Industries
9. P & G Hygiene and Health Care
10. Marico Industries

Problems that this Industry may face in the near future –

i. Stiff competition among domestic and foreign entrants-
Players from the organised as well as unorganised sector continue to grab at each other’s market shares. The entry of existing players in new segments has resulted in high pressure on margins. This has been tackled by more expenses on promotion and advertising.

ii. Poor transport facilities –
The highly scattered market basket is difficult to cater to with inadequate infrastructure. Rural and semi-urban penetration in such conditions becomes a great challenge.

iii. Low Brand-Awareness –
The lack of knowledge of branded, genuine commodities among people in small towns allows local dealers to sell spurious products.

iv. Increase in factor prices –
The sustained inflationary market has put a major dent in the FMCG industry. It has led to higher costs of raw materials as well as packaging and distribution. Most companies try to transfer the burden to consumers to some extent by price hikes and smaller SKUs. Even then, margins go down. Generally consumers stick to their preferred brands as long as price hikes are reasonable.

With the Indian economy on a high growth flight, the one-billion plus population proves to be a tremendous asset for the FMCG sector. But at the same time, it may be a very difficult place to operate in. The companies will have to strategize and make sure that they are aligned to the prevailing market scenario. In all, we can say that the FMCG GOD is omnipresent.

Beyond Acads @ Planet-I

Posted: August 19, 2008 in Extra-curricular

The i-clubs at IIM Indore are the heart and soul of everything that happens outside the academic arena. Ask any student at IIMI and you’ll be told that there are at least 2 to 3 events being conducted every week by the various clubs. These are in addition to the various activities organised by different committees of the institute. If an image of long and boring sessions of talks is coming to your mind, then think again. These clubs and their events have a good mix of fun & knowledge to assure that at Planet-I every participant is involved. These clubs are not social warehouses of all talk and no deeds. They’re true instruments of innovation and creativity along with application. And the best part is that it’s a complete student run initiative. If you don’t believe me, then just read on for a short journey into the life at IIMI.
IIMI has a balance of clubs to represent all sectors. There’s Currenc-I targeting international business and economics, the E&C club focusing on 2 huge domains of management- Entrepreneurship and Consultancy, Pragat-I which is a social welfare and development initiative and the Quiz club meant for the masters of riddles. But that’s not the end. There are Mercur-I, Equit-I, Infinit-I and Operand-I which focus on Marketing, Finance, IT and Operations respectively.
The clubs are often helping students with various academic related problems, one recent example was the MS-excel workshop organised by Operand-I. These i-clubs have also been giving guidance to students regarding certifications such as NCFM and APICS. The E&C club has started a mentorship program for budding entrepreneurs and in line with that plan to contact the true risk takers in the market to give the students guidance. The club has also encouraged students to participate in the Retail Summit being organised by TiE Delhi Retail SIG next month.
Among some of the most interesting events organised in the past month was “Jumping the product-extension line” by club Mercur-I, which gave students a hands-on experience of advertising. That’s not all. Mercur-I also plans to organise an event tagged “Utsaha” some time in Feb next year, which is promised to be a true festival. The event is actually meant for surveying prospective customers, meant for certain online-projects from the industry.
For those of you who think all this is linked to management, you must explore the Theatre club – Idanim and our very own Quizzing zone head by Tejas Kulkarni. One recent event in which students took great interest, despite heavy rains was 4-play. Yes, it was as good as the name sounds. A collection of spoofs based on various fairy-tales, 4-play was a bag full of nitrous oxide. The quiz club, like many others, organises events in the dead of the night, but you’ll never see an empty hall. Among some of the other events in the past month, there have been the ‘Distribution Game”, “Mantrana” and the paper writing competition “Mudra”. Now you know why Planet-I stays lit till the wee hrs of the morning.
The IIMs have been known for overall skill development, and truly speaking I would give a large part of the credit to these Interest clubs. May the flame of enthusiasm continue to burn at IIM Indore!

The Mafia Game…

Posted: August 15, 2008 in Extra-curricular

First, I’d like to wish you all a very Happy Independance Day!
What has been happening at Planet-I today. Well, we had the usual flag hoisting, Director speech and tea. But this year was slightly different. We spent the day out on an informal Mentor-Mentee picnic, a group of almost 300+ students, staff and family members out to Mayank’s Blue Water Park.
There were mixed feelings among students regarding the picnic, some wanting to just stay back and rest, but I guess at the end of the day every1 enjoyed in some way or the other. There were group activities, water sports and of course food..
But I would say, the new attraction of the day was “The Mafia Game”. No guys, we weren’t terrorizing the nation on 15th August. It’s a psychology-based stationary Group Game originally invented by psychology student Dimitry Davidoff in Russia, 1986. The game involves strategy and bluffing. People play as a member of the mafia, police, doctor(or Healer) and town. The object is to eliminate the mafia before they eliminate the entire town. Its a lovely game and if you’re interested, follow the links below:
The game has many variants(“Are you a werewolf?” , “Lupus in Tabula”, “Assassin”, etc.) and you can search online or create your own ways of making the game more complex and interesting.
The game will truly show you how deceptive people can be… and you’ll probably discover new dimensions of your psyche as well. So, enjoy playing guys and I’d love to see your comments on the game.

A scene showing Voting during a game of Mafia

Another scene showing members of the Town sleeping

Our MAFIA team…

The Midterm Nightmare…

Posted: August 6, 2008 in Studies

Its already been about 40 days since i crossed the gates of IIM Indore into a world which I’ve always dreamt of. The past 6 weeks have been memorable to say the least. And I’ll make sure you get a view of it in the form of flashbacks.

But the recent happenings first… My first mid-term at Planet-I:3 days, 6 papers. For all the great brains out here (excuse me if I’m being a bit boastful) , these papers have been a real eye-opener. Who says a Supply curve or a Demand curve is the simplest part of economics…? Add a bit of consumer-preference and 2 professors’ brains, and you have the Economics Olympiad. The IT revolution has been so deep that it will haunt you even in Management. I’m not joking guys.. Management Information systems was a true nightmare. Most of us will probably just scrape through. I’m not going to bore you with any more details, but these papers are worth appreciating. A wake up call to all the PGP participants.You wanted the best’ve got it.
During these midterms, the funniest part has been peoples’ g-talk status messages. To quote a few –
“Now surprise quizzes seem much easier :)”
“First day of midterm…and I’m loving it…Kindly read the sarcasm in my lines”
“ye IT kyu hai”
“Why even try”
“Getting so much used to the indifference curve that it makes no difference anymore”
and my very own… “The Midterm nightmare continues”
I’m off to get a wink guys. Will keep you updated. And I’ll write again very soon. Just pray that tomorrow’s last 2 aren’t a full stop. 🙂