COLLOQUIUM 2015 – Annual Business Conclave of IIM Indore
25TH – 27TH JULY, 2015
DAY 1: COLLOQUIUM- The Annual Business Conclave organized by IIM Indore had a great start on the 25th of July with several eminent personalities gracing the occasion. The theme of the three day conclave was ‘E-Commerce in India- From Bricks to Clicks’. This is the trending topic in all business circles and the students turned up in huge numbers for each of the guest lectures.
From Left: Ramya Venugopal, senior member, Industry Interaction Cell (IIC) , opening the event. Right : K Vaitheeswaran, giving the keynote address.
Day1 of the conclave began with the inauguration and welcome address by Director Rishikesha Krishnan. The first lecture of the day was by Mr.Vaitheeswaran, commonly referred to as ‘Father of e-commerce in India’. He was the founder and CEO of Indiaplaza.com, India’s first internet retail company. He has also very recently served as a strategic consultant for the TATA group on e-commerce. This was followed by the talk on Growth of e-commerce in India by Mr.Shanu Singh, an alumnus of IIT Delhi and IIM Bangalore. He currently heads the E-commerce and Digital transformation arm of Godrej and Boyce Mfg Ltd.
From left : Mr. Shanu Singh, talking about digital revolution of eCommerce. Right: Mr. Shyam Katuri talking about eCommerce startups and the digital age of business.
He highlighted the trends in the industry supported by data as well as about the challenges the sector faces. The third talk of the day was by Mr.Shyam Katuri, the current AVP-Business unit head at FashionAndYou. Earlier he has served as Director,Jabong and DGM at Pantaloon India Ltd. He is an alumnus of London Business School, UK. With several years’ experience in this sector his talk enlightened the students about the various models, trends in this sector. An enthusiastic question-answer session followed.
Post the lunch hour, a Panel Discussion on the topic ‘E-Commerce in India’ took place with all of the above mentioned speakers and one of the second year students’, John Jose Numpeli acting as the moderator. It was a very insightful session as various experts shared their diverse views on the questions raised. The audience thoroughly enjoyed the session.
The last event planned for the day was ‘Elevator Pitch’. It was a competition that was pre-floated to the second year students of the Post Graduate programme. They had to make a two minute pitch presentation of their Business idea to an investor in order to convince him to sponsor his project. The entries were screened and the top 9 participants got the golden opportunity to present it to the panel of judges. Some of the ideas presented by Harshad Sachani, Mahesh Narayan were lauded by the judges. The judges cross-questioned their ideas and this also helped the finalists in reflecting upon their ideas and striving to improve them. The results of the competition will be declared on the last day of the conclave.
DAY 2: The second day of Colloquim’2015 organized at IIM Indore, as a three day mega event on the theme of E-Commerce, kicked off in a spectacular way. The IIM Indore community got the opportunity to listen to five experts deliver guest lectures.
Mr. Alphonse Reddy, Founder and CEO of Fabmart.com, talked about “Gaining customer trust online”, by bringing out differentiated products in the highly commoditized and competitive e-commerce space, to gain profits.
Mr. Mukesh Jain, VP and Head, Big Data Analytics, Reliance Jio, delivered a lecture on “Trapping the customer with data”, and enlightened the listeners on the importance of big data analytics to derive value out of huge customer data collected every second. He talked about SoLoMo,.i.e Social, Local and Mobile, which according to him, is the future. “Do what you enjoy the most”, is what he began his address with.
Mr. Madhur Arora, Head of e-Commerce business, India and Thailand, Expedia Inc., gave a talk on “Travel and hospitality : power houses of e-Commerce”. He talked about some very innovative business models like TravelTriangle, Stayzilla, Zostel, Tripoto, that are addressing every single need of the customer, when it comes to travel and hospitality.
Mr. Rajesh Bysani, AVP-Business Unit Head at Freecharge.in, talked about “Affiliate Marketing”, and its challenges, like poor customer retention, price sensitivity, lack of brand loyalty. His mantra was to “make the customer invest in your product every time”
Mr. Mohit Gupta, VP, Healthkart.com, talked about “E-Commerce 2.0”, and its relevance in the health and fitness category, that is witnessing tremendous growth. He said, “It’s possible to build world class brands through e commerce”, and that is what, he and his colleagues at Healthkart are trying to do.
Mr. Mohit Gupta- VP, Healthkart.com Panel discussion on day 2
Following that, there was a panel discussion, with Mr. Alphonse Reddy, Mr. Madhur Arora, Mr. Rajesh Bysani, Mr. Mohit Gupta, Mr. Shyam Katuri, on “Price wars and discounts: race to the bottom or the ultimate winning strategy.” The discussion was an enriching one, with a lot of participation from all the attendees. Post this discussion, a quiz was organized by the Quiz Club, IIM Indore.
DAY 3: Colloquium, the Annual Business Conclave of IIM Indore concluded today. The 3-day event brought a host of opportunities to students on campus in the form of guest lectures, panel discussions, workshops and competitions.
Mr. Sameer Gandhi, Senior VP- Sales and Operations at Bluestone.com spoke about Managing jewelry e-tailing spoke of the inherent strengths and weaknesses of selling customized jewelry online.”The importance of building Customer trust and reliability in jewelry e-tail is what distinguishes it from e-commerve as such”, he highlighted. He spoke on the significance of building customer relations. Mr. Abhishek Tripathi, Associate Director-Business at PayU elaborated on the evolution of Digital payments as an enabler of e-commerce. “The opportunity that SME Sellers and Micro-entrepreneurs derived from the facilities like pace and affordability of online selling platforms integrated with gateways like PayU are promising”, he said.
PayU, for the first time floated an in-case presentation for students of IIM Indore exclusively. 15 of the 63 participating teams vied to win the prestigious contest. The concluding session of Colloquium 2015 was by Mr. Vidmai Naini, Director & Business Head at Ebay, India. Mr. Naini spoke about the tailwinds for w-commerce in India as well as the 10 year journey of Ebay in India. “We are bringing nearly 20 million users to e-commerce” he said, comparing the numbers to be nearly as much as the population of Australia. He attributed the growth of the e-commerce industry to the bottlenecks in the traditional retail trade and the increasing mobile penetration.
Finally, director Rishikesha Krishnan, congratulated the Industry Interaction Cell (IIC) who organised the 3-day event with a good panel of speakers from the e-commerce industry and awarded certificates to the winners of Biz-Quiz and Elevator pitch competitions.
Mr. Abhishek Tripathi, Director of Business at PayU Money addressing the students