Saturday, December 30, 2023

India’s Hon. PM Shri Narendra Modi, GJEPC Chairman Vipul Shah in Rapaport's "People of the Year 2023” in global diamond industry

Among 2023’s most powerful/Influential people in the global diamond trade

National, 30th December 2023: The world’s most influential and most read diamond-focussed publication ‘Rapaport’ named Hon. Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi among the movers and shakers of the global diamond industry in the year 2023. Other members including Vipul Shah, Chairman, The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC); Gina Drosos, CEO, Signet Jewelers; Feriel Zerouki, president, World Diamond Council (WDC); Mokgweetsi Masisi, president, Botswana; Gabi Tolkowsky, Belgian diamond cutter;   were at the forefront hailed by Rapaport the most powerful/ influential people in the world to shape the future of the diamond industry.


Our “People of the Year” reflect the realities of 2023, said Rapaport in its foreword. Some of these individuals were directly involved in solving the industry’s acute problems — facilitating India’s freeze on rough imports, for example, or identifying ways to adapt retail strategy to the situation. As with the famous Time Person of the Year, inclusion in this list is not necessarily a recognition of an individual’s positive contribution, but rather of his or her influence on the diamond industry and/or presence in the headlines. We have chosen to spread the honors among several figures rather than picking a single person of the year,

Mr. Vipul Shah said, “India’s leadership and significance in the global diamond trade continues even in 2023. We are proud of the millions of workers connected to India’s gem & jewellery. We are proud and privileged that our Government with the Hon. Prime Minister support us to keep the sparkle intact.”

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi had a number of contact points with the jewelry industry in 2023, says Rapaport. He inaugurated the Surat Diamond Bourse in December. He also raised a few eyebrows by referring to lab-grown diamonds as “green diamonds”, said Rapaport.

Rapaport lauded the efforts and initiatives undertaken by Shri Vipul Shah amidst headwinds faced by the indigenous industry. The GJEPC holds a monthly online forum with representatives of the industry to discuss trends and concerns, said Rapaport. In September of this year, with polished prices tumbling amid weak retail sales and an oversupply, the Indian trade body decided the situation warranted a broader, physical gathering. The attendees came to a unanimous conclusion: India needed a voluntary pause in rough-diamond imports to stop inventories from getting out of control. The industry implemented this freeze for two months, from October 15 to December 15, taking the pressure off the sector and enabling the market to stabilize.

Insiders at the GJEPC say it was an industry-wide call for an import moratorium and that the country has made similar moves in past crises. However, it was the GJEPC that brought people together and managed the process following the crunch meeting. Vipul Shah, its chairman, was at the forefront, said Rapaport. 

About The Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC)

The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), set up by the Ministry of Commerce, Government of India (GoI) in 1966, is one of several Export Promotion Councils (EPCs) launched by the Indian Government, to boost the country’s export thrust, when India’s post-Independence economy began making forays in the international markets. Since 1998, the GJEPC has been granted autonomous status. The GJEPC is the apex body of the gems & jewellery industry and today represents 9500 members in the sector.  With headquarters in Mumbai, GJEPC has Regional Offices in New Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Surat and Jaipur, all of which are major centres for the industry. It thus has a wide reach and is able to have a closer interaction with members to serve them in a direct and more meaningful manner. Over the past decades, GJEPC has emerged as one of the most active EPCs and has continuously strived to both expand its reach and depth in its promotional activities as well as widen and increase services to its members.





Friday, December 29, 2023


Rejoins with a Shared Management Vision of Creating the Largest Small Business Financing

Institution Driven by Data and Technology



Mumbai, December 29, 2023: UGRO Capital is delighted to announce the triumphant return of Rajni Khurana, a seasoned Human Resources professional, as the Chief People Officer (CPO). Rajni's homecoming is marked by her passion for empowering the MSME ecosystem and reinforcing UGRO Capital's commitment to becoming the largest Small Business Financing Institution driven by Data and Technology.

With over two decades of diverse experience in Global Human Resources Management and Strategic Business Advisory, Rajni brings a wealth of expertise to her role. She has a proven track record in creating platforms for growing organizations, particularly in the financial services sector.

Rajni Khurana was an integral part of the foundation team at UGRO Capital, where she played a pivotal role in scaling up the people function, establishing culture, values, and policy frameworks. Her previous stint saw her working closely with the Board on strategic people agendas, contributing significantly to scaling the organization to 45 branches and 500+ employees.

As UGRO Capital embarks on its next phase of growth, Rajni's return is timely. The company, now present in 105 branches with over 2000 employees, plans to add 75 branches in the next quarter. Rajni will play a crucial role in continuing to establish a meritocratic culture, enabling cross-functional synergies, fostering a non-hierarchical environment, and enhancing rewards and recognition programs.

Expressing his enthusiasm, Mr. Shachindra Nath, Founder and Managing Director of U GRO Capital, said“At UGRO Capital, our strength lies in the foundation of our robust management team. Over the past few years, we have been diligently building a best-in-class team with the capability to construct India's largest small business financing platform. We are delighted to welcome Rajni back to UGRO Capital. She built the initial people-centric culture framework of UGRO and her rejoining would bring continuity in building the entrepreneurial culture required for our journey to build best in class financial institution. Her extensive experience and unwavering commitment to our mission align seamlessly with our organizational goals. As a founding member who shares our passion, Rajni's leadership will undoubtedly be instrumental in shaping the next chapter of our growth. Together, we look forward to achieving new milestones and further solidifying UGRO Capital's position as a leader in the small business financing landscape.”

Rajni Khurana, on her appointment, stated, “Returning to U GRO Capital feels like coming back home. I am excited about the shared vision of empowering the MSME ecosystem. UGRO Capital's journey to become the largest Small Business Financing Institution is both inspiring and challenging, and I am eager to contribute to its success.”

Rajni Khurana was most recently associated with IndoSpace as Executive Director & head of human Resources. Her impressive career also includes impactful roles at CRISIL, Birla Sunlife Insurance, HDFC Bank, and WNS.

UGRO Capital looks forward to achieving new heights with Rajni Khurana's leadership and commitment, as she goes beyond the ordinary to contribute to the company's mission.


About UGRO Capital Ltd (NSE: UGROCAP I BSE: 511742)

UGRO Capital Limited is a DataTech Lending platform, listed on NSE and BSE. Pursuing its mission of “Solving the Unsolved” for the small business credit gap in India, on the back of its formidable distribution reach and its Data-tech approach. The Company’s prowess in Data Analytics and strong Technology architecture allows for customized sourcing platforms for each sourcing channel. GRO Plus module which has uberized intermediated sourcing, GRO Chain, a supply chain financing platform with automated end-to-end approval and flow of invoices, GRO Xstream platform for co-lending, an upstream and downstream integration with fintechs and liability providers, and GRO X application to deliver embedded financing option to MSMEs. The credit scoring model GRO Score (3.0) a statistical framework using AI / ML driven statistical model to risk rank customers is revolutionizing the MSME credit by providing on-tap financing like consumer financing in India. UGRO has pioneered the "Lending as a Service" (LaaS) model in India which is prevalent in the West through Co-Lending relationships with 10+ Large Public Sector Banks and large NBFCs and built a sizeable off-balance sheet asset of more than 45% of its AUM through the GRO Xstream platform. The Company is backed by marquee institutional investors (raised INR 900+ Cr of equity capital in 2018 and INR 340 Cr in 2023) and aims to capture 1% market share over the next three years. For more information, please visit:

About FMO

FMO is the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank. As a leading impact investor, FMO supports sustainable private sector growth in developing countries and emerging markets by investing in ambitious projects and entrepreneurs. FMO believes that a strong private sector leads to economic and social development and has a 50+ year proven track-record in empowering entrepreneurs to make local economies more inclusive, productive, resilient, and sustainable. FMO focuses on three sectors that have a high development impact: Agribusiness, Food & Water, Energy, and Financial Institutions. With a total committed portfolio of EUR ~12 billion spanning over 85 countries, FMO is one of the larger bilateral private sector development banks globally. For more information, please visit:




Gateway of India Immortalized in Philately: Chief Postmaster General, Maharashtra Circle Unveils a Permanent Pictorial Cancellation at Taj Mahal Post Office, Mumbai.

In a momentous event today, 28.12.2023 at the Taj Mahal Post Office, Mumbai  the Chief Postmaster General of Maharashtra Circle, Shri Kishan Kumar Sharma, unveiled a captivating permanent pictorial cancellation featuring the iconic Gateway of India. Simultaneously, the release of the 2024 calendar adorned with pictorial cancellations from Maharashtra and Goa added an artistic flair to the occasion.

The unveiling of the permanent pictorial cancellation at the Taj Mahal Post  Office, Mumbai marks a historic tribute to the Gateway of India, one of the nation's most revered landmarks. This permanent pictorial cancellation is a testament to the Maharashtra Circle's commitment to celebrating cultural heritage through the medium of philately.

The 2024 calendar released today offers a visual journey through Maharashtra and Goa, showcasing the unique charm and cultural richness of these states. Each month on the calendar is adorned with exquisite pictorial cancellation that encapsulate the essence of these regions, making it a collector's delight.

In a ceremony attended by esteemed postal officials, philatelic enthusiasts, and dignitaries, Shri Sharma expressed his enthusiasm for the philatelic contributions that highlight India's architectural and cultural marvels. 

The Gateway of India permanent pictorial cancellation and the 2024 calendar received accolades from attendees, emphasizing the Maharashtra Circle's dedication to fostering a deeper appreciation for our nation's heritage through the medium of Postal Cancellations.

Thursday, December 28, 2023

Grihum Housing Finance Rating reaffirmed at 'CRISIL A1+ '; Bank Debt and Non Convertible Debentures assigned 'CRISIL AA- / Stable'

Company’s healthy capitalisation level, pan-India presence, and access to a diversified funding mix at lower funding costs are the key rating drivers

Pune and Mumbai, India, December 28, 2023: We are delighted to announce that Grihum Housing Finance Limited (formerly Poonawalla Housing Finance Ltd), has garnered notable ratings from CRISIL, India’s largest rating agency. 

Grihum’s short-term debt instruments have been rated ‘CRISIL A1+’, while its long-term debt instruments received a ‘CRISIL AA-/Stable’.

Grihum’s robust capitalisation level, fund-raising ability, pan-India presence with 195 branches across 19 states, access to a diversified funding mix at lower funding costs and stable leadership team were some of the key reasons for its solid rating.  It also factored in the expectation of support to Grihum, from TPG, a global private equity firm, both on an ongoing basis and in the event of exigency. After the acquisition, TPG has committed Rs 1000 crore of fresh capital to the company. The first tranche of Rs 538 crore was infused into Grihum in August’23. With strong capital buffers, exemplified by a total capital adequacy ratio of 46.35% as of September 30, 2023, the company is well-positioned to sustain its growth trajectory and safeguard against any deterioration in asset quality.

“The latest CRISIL ratings for Grihum establish it as a Company with one of the best credit ratings amongst PE backed Affordable Housing Finance organisations, validating the strength of our robust business model and efficient liability management. Grihum is deeply committed to providing housing finance, particularly to Self Made Individuals (SMIs) in India’s semi-urban regions. Over the last six years, we have achieved an impressive 4X growth, an Asset Under Management (AUM) of approximately Rs 7500 crores and a customer base exceeding 75,000. With the ongoing structural economic development and the rurbanization trend in India, we are strategically positioned to turn the aspirations of millions of first-time homebuyers into reality," said Mr. Manish Jaiswal, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of Grihum. 

The archetypical Grihum customer - a self-made individual (SMI) and micro-entrepreneur in the semi-urban parts of the country – usually seeks a loan of about Rs 10-12 lakhs for building a self-constructed standalone home of 600-800 sq ft area. Grihum is committed to working closely with these SMIs who need handholding and guidance owing to their limited experience and exposure. Hence, it has also moved to a 100 percent direct sourcing model, leading to improved asset quality as compared to assets sourced through DSAs (Direct Selling Agents). 

Grihum is highly focussed on becoming future-ready. With an eye on becoming a leading affordable housing fintech, it has initiated a digital transformation and is replacing its generational multi-stack IT infrastructure with an agile, need-based, and flexible Low Code No Code (LCNC) platform with a modular IT stack. This massive tech overhaul will substantially contribute to elevating customer experiences and building scale. 

About Grihum Housing Finance Limited

Grihum Housing Finance Limited (formerly Poonawalla Housing Finance Limited) is a national-scale affordable housing finance company with a presence across 19 states and Union Territories and ~195 branches, catering to 75,000+ customers. The Company has an AUM of ₹ ~7,500+ crores with ~74% of its on-book assets as affordable home loans, averaging a ticket size of ~₹ 10 lakhs. GRIHUM is engaged in making homeownership a reality for those overlooked by India’s mainstream lenders through its brand tagline, “Apna Ghar. Apni Pehchan” (My home, My identity)”. The Company primarily serves through its model of Go Home Loan, Go Direct, Go Deep, and strong in-house capabilities.

For more information, please visit

Education Leadership Summit 2024- a leadership summit for Indian educators and school leaders.

The summit is focused exclusively on improving quality of education in India and it is designed to cater to the specific needs of Indian school leaders

To be held in Mumbai and Delhi, the summit is open to all schools across the country



Mumbai, 27th December 2023: Michigan-based University of Michigan-Marsal Family School of Education in association with Globestar Consulting Services presents University of Michigan-Marsal Globestar Education Leadership Summit 2024, a leadership summit for Indian educators and school leaders. To be held in Mumbai and Delhi from January 28th to February 3rd, the summit will be spearheaded by experienced faculty members from the prestigious Marsal Family School of Education at the University of Michigan and Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning.


Conducted across 3 days each in Mumbai and Delhi, the summit will feature workshops, school visit, case studies and panel discussions and culminate with Education Diligence Awards (EDA) to honor and celebrate excellence in education. Dean Jonathan Massey from the Taubman School of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan will be concluding the 3rd Day at each location with insights on education leadership, alongside Dean Elizabeth Moje.


India has about 280 Million school going children and about 9 Million teachers to cater to them. A report by UNESCO titled “2021 State of the Education Report for India” indicates that India has a shortage of 1 Million teachers. Furthermore, India’s pupil-teacher ratios remain low when compared to other countries. This acute shortage of teaching staff has a direct impact on the quality of education. Additionally, most of the schools today do not have a trial tested international framework that can be localised to have a collective teaching practice that is engaging and meaningful for the 21st century. University of Michigan-Marsal Globestar Education Leadership Summit has been conceptualized to address the above mentioned gaps in the Indian education system. The summit aims to involve 120 school leaders across the country to engage in a collaborative teaching and learning process and empower them with knowledge to positively impact schools and classrooms. On Day 3 of the summit, the concluding sessions are open to 150 educators at each location to ensure broader reach and engagement.


The summit, primarily aimed at school owners, directors, heads of schools, principals and aspiring educators, will cover topics such as curriculum development, disciplinary literacy and AI, innovative instructional approach, best practices in school administration and technology integration. It offers a great opportunity for stakeholders in the education sector to get in-depth insights into creating a vision for their educational institutions. For directors and heads of schools, it serves as an avenue to acquire valuable knowledge to ensure consistent progress, avoid stagnation of their skillset and to bridge the gap between their educational objectives and financial sustainability. In addition, for aspiring principals, it will aid in enhancing their skills and help in formulating effective strategies for school management.


Commenting on the event, Elizabeth Birr Moje, Dean, Marsal Family School Of Education, said, “Our mission at Marsal Family School of Education is to enhance the quality of education by carefully identifying and addressing some of the gaps that exist in the current education system. We are thrilled to bring forth our expertise and engage with educators to positively impact the education landscape in India. The summit offers a great opportunity for school leaders to connect, collaborate, and engage in a transformative learning experience”


Dhaval Mehta, CEO and Founder, Globestar Edutech Pvt Ltd and TNI Career Counselling, said, “ Globestar was founded with an aim to assist educational institutions, both schools and universities, to enhance the quality of education they offer and improve the overall student experience and career prospects. Over the last several years, we have created a meaningful difference in the education industry through our services and events. The UM-Marsal Globestar Education Leadership Summit 2024 is yet another step in that direction. We are excited to partner with Marsal Family School Of Education to host a first-of-its-kind education summit in India. I would like to invite schools across India to join us for the event as we explore best practices and innovative approaches to transform education in India. Schools can also nominate themselves for the Education Diligence Awards (EDA) designed to recognize and celebrate excellence in education.


To kick off the summit, a preview took place on December 20th, 2023 to offer an overview of the event. During the session, participants had the opportunity to understand the outcomes and advantages of attending the summit. The introductory session had an active engagement of over 15 schools which included names such as BD Somani International School, DPS Mathura Road, Heritage School Vasant Kunj, Bharati Vidyapeeth School of Excellence Pune, Canadian International School and several others.



To register, visit,

Email: / +91-91678 64136/37


Registration Fee:

     Early bird passes - 1,25,000/- +18% GST

     Late passes - 1,50,000/- +18% GST

     School package - 3,25,000/- + 18% GST (They are available for up to 10 schools in each city and it includes 2 leaders on Day 1& 2, and 4 leaders on Day 3.


The last day for early bird pass is 30th December, while the deadline for late passes is January 12, 2024.



Tuesday, December 26, 2023

Grasim wins Silver under Excellence in BRSR-Large Cap (Manufacturing Sector) at the 3rd Sustainability Reporting Awards by The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI)

Awarded by ICAI for Sustainability Reporting for third consecutive year

Grasim Industries Limited ("Grasim") won “Silver” in Sustainability Reporting under “Excellence in BRSR-Large Cap (Manufacturing Sector) at 3rd  ICAI Sustainability Reporting Awards 2022-23. The awards ceremony was hosted at the National Stock Exchange (NSE) premises in Mumbai to recognise, reward and encourage initiatives of Businesses with a transformative contribution to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It was attended by industry sustainability stalwarts, and professionals. Shri Ashish Chauhan, MD & CEO of the National Stock Exchange and CA Aniket Talati, President ICAI presented the prestigious award to Grasim represented by Pavan Jain, CFO, who was joined by Ankit Panchmatia, Head -Investor Relations, and Ms Sheetal Daga.

"Grasim has the distinction of winning the ICAI Sustainability Reporting Award for the third consecutive time" stated Pavan Jain, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Grasim Industries. He added “The award recognises Grasim's focussed ESG journey over the past few years and reporting well ahead of regulatory requirements. We have reached significant reporting milestones and are striving to be at the forefront of Sustainability reporting. We are dedicated to providing best-in-class ESG disclosures for the benefit of all of our stakeholders."

The selection was made through a robust 3-tier process: Review by technical reviewers on defined parameters, review of short-listed sustainability reports by shield panel and selection by external jury consisting of representatives from across the globe from regulatory bodies, industrialists, philanthropists, professionals, academicians, etc.

NABARD Empowers Rural Artisans by Supporting their Participation in Mahalaxmi Saras 2023-24

Mumbai, December 26, 2023: The Mahalaxmi Saras 2023-24, a celebration of India's rich cultural heritage, opened its doors on December 26th at MMRDA Ground, Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) in Mumbai. The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) is supporting many artisans across the country to market their merchandise at the event.

Shri Girish Mahajan, Minister of Rural Development & Panchayat Raj of Maharashtra, inaugurated the much-awaited event in the presence of distinguished guests, including Representatives of MSRLM, Shri Ruchesh Jaivanshi, CEO, MSRLM, Shri Parmeshwar Raut,COO, MSRLM, and Shri Raymond D’Souza, CGM, NABARD. 

Organised annually since 2006 by the Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India, and the Department of Rural Development, Government of Maharashtra, in collaboration with the UMED-Maharashtra State Rural Livelihood Mission (MSRLM), the Mahalakshmi Saras Mela serves as a vital platform for Self Help Groups (SHGs), craftspeople, artisans, farmers, and other stakeholders to showcase their products and connect with urban consumers.

“Mahalaxmi Saras Mela exemplifies our commitment to empowering rural artisans. We are proud to be associated with an event that not only provides a marketplace for artisans but also fosters a deeper understanding of India's rich cultural heritage. Through initiatives like these, we aim to bridge the gap between rural artisans and urban consumers, creating sustainable livelihoods and preserving our diverse traditions," said Shri Shaji K.V., Chairman, NABARD.

“Each NABARD supported stall tells a story of our artisans and their efforts in producing beautiful handlooms and handicrafts. NABARD shall continue to provide pathbreaking interventions for rural artisans and farmers and provision of 49 stalls to them in SARAS mela is one such example. The participants in SARAS would inspire many other rural inhabitants to come forward and market their products in urban areas.” said Shri Raymond D’Souza, CGM, NABARD. 

This year's event boasts over 500 stalls featuring a diverse array of products from across India. Notably, NABARD has contributed to the mela's unique offerings, supporting 49 stalls of artisans from across the country. These stalls are showcasing products like Assamese Gamocha, Pochampally sarees, Banarasi sarees, Tangliya products, etc. The apex agriculture bank will be helping approximately 100 rural artisans from Self Help Groups (SHGs), Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs), and Off-Farm Producer Organisations (OFPOs) to exhibit their products. The NABARD-assisted artisan group will be exhibiting 13 Geographical Indication (GI) certified products.

Recognising the need to protect dying arts and crafts in rural areas, NABARD has been at the forefront, supporting rural artisans, weavers, farmers, and craftsmen by providing financial assistance, skilling, market linkages, and infrastructure facilities. As part of its initiatives, NABARD has been a consistent supporter of the SARAS Mela for the 2023-24 edition too. Highlighting the importance of GI-tagged products, NABARD ensures that only creative and innovative products make it to the mela, enriching urban consumers on the diversity and uniqueness of these offerings.

Many rural artisans lack access to urban markets; the SARAS Mela provides crucial exposure. The platform enables artisans to understand urban market preferences, fostering adaptability. Artisans can negotiate better prices and explore opportunities for bulk/corporate orders. NABARD's association provides a unique platform for rural artisans to increase income, build brands, and gain recognition among urban consumers. 

The exhibition will conclude on January 7th, 2024. Attendees can visit the stalls between 10 am – 10 pm on all days till then. 


The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) is an apex development financial institution in India. Established on 12 July 1982, with headquarters in Mumbai, NABARD operates with a mission to promote sustainable and equitable agriculture and rural prosperity through effective credit support, related services, institutional development, and other innovative initiatives. NABARD plays a crucial role in fostering rural development, empowering farmers, and catalysing the growth of the rural economy.

Thursday, December 21, 2023


Launches Pan-India Awareness Campaign to Educate Small Businesses on Government Schemes and Promote Digital Credit across the Country.


Jodhpur, Rajasthan, December 21, 2023: U GRO Capital, a leading DataTech NBFC focused on MSME lending, has joined forces with Laghu Udyog Bharati, an organization dedicated to supporting and promoting micro-enterprises to conduct a seminar in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, as part of their nationwide initiative to educate small businesses on government schemes and promote digital credit. This eventis the first of 100 planned seminars, aimed to raise awareness and provide education to micro-enterprises in India regarding government schemes, digital credit, and strategies for success in an evolving business landscape. This is a pivotal step in empowering micro-enterprises across the country.

The credit landscape for MSMEs in Rajasthan is undergoing a positive transformation and Jodhpur, the Sun City, holds immense potential for MSME growth. Rajasthan is home to over 6 lakh MSMEs, which provide employment to over 37 lakh people and has long been the backbone of the country's economy. U GRO Capital, with its strong presence in key cities such as Jodhpur, Kota, Jaipur, Bikaner, and Udaipur, as well as over 20 micro-locations across Rajasthan, is committed to supporting MSMEs in their growth journey. The company extends credit to MSMEs in Barmer, Pali, Sumerpur, and Jaitaran around Jodhpur, contributing to the economic development of these regions.

U GRO Capital's innovative financial products and proprietary underwriting model, GRO Score 3.0, position it as a valuable partner in extending cashflow-based lending to Rajasthan's MSMEs. Rajasthan, with its vibrant economic activities, stands to benefit significantly from these educational initiatives, fostering a conducive environment for MSMEs to thrive.

Mr. Shachindra Nath, Founder and Managing Director of U GRO Capital, expressed his enthusiasm, saying, "Our mission at U GRO Capital is to empower small businesses across India. Jodhpur, with its dynamic MSME ecosystem, holds immense potential for growth. Through this seminar and our partnership with Laghu Udyog Bharati, we aim to equip local businesses with the knowledge and tools necessary for success in the digital era."

Shri Ghanshyam Ojha, President of Laghu Udyog Bharati, added, "Laghu Udyog Bharati is committed to supporting micro-enterprises, and our collaboration with U GRO Capital aligns seamlessly with our vision. The seminar in Jodhpur marks the beginning of a transformative journey, bringing government schemes and digital credit solutions directly to the doorstep of MSMEs in Rajasthan."

The seminar in Jodhpur marks the beginning of a nationwide effort to empower India's MSMEs, and U GRO Capital and Laghu Udyog Bharati are confident that the knowledge-sharing initiatives will contribute significantly to the growth and success of micro-enterprises across the state and country.

About Laghu Udyog Bharati:

Laghu Udyog Bharati, since 1994, being the largest MSME association of the country, with presence in 27 states, 550 Districts and 45000 Members, has been key in bring out Financial Environment for Micro & Small Enterprises at the National Capital with Government of India.

Laghu Udyog Bharati, in line with G20 Financial Inclusion Mission, is desirous of fulfilling the huge needs of growing economic demand for Micro and Small Enterprises.  Laghu Udyog Bharati has engaged, as part of its Financial Outreach for Micro & Small Enterprises, with UGRO Capital, to extend Capital Support in 100 Locations of 27 states to Micro & Small Enterprises. For more information, please visit:


About UGRO Capital Ltd (NSE: UGROCAP I BSE: 511742)

UGRO Capital Limited is a DataTech Lending platform, listed on NSE and BSE. Pursuing its mission of “Solving the Unsolved” for the small business credit gap in India, on the back of its formidable distribution reach and its Data-tech approach.

The Company’s prowess in Data Analytics and strong Technology architecture allows for customized sourcing platforms for each sourcing channel. GRO Plus module which has uberized intermediated sourcing, GRO Chain, a supply chain financing platform with automated end-to-end approval and flow of invoices, GRO Xstream platform for co-lending, an upstream and downstream integration with fintechs and liability providers, and GRO X application to deliver embedded financing option to MSMEs. 

The credit scoring model GRO Score (3.0) a statistical framework using AI / ML driven statistical model to risk rank customers is revolutionizing the MSME credit by providing on-tap financing like consumer financing in India.

UGRO has pioneered the "Lending as a Service" (LaaS) model in India which is prevalent in the West through Co-Lending relationships with 10+ Large Public Sector Banks and large NBFCs and built a sizeable off-balance sheet asset of more than 45% of its AUM through the GRO Xstream platform.

The Company is backed by marquee institutional investors (raised INR 900+ Cr of equity capital in 2018 and INR 340 Cr in 2023) and aims to capture 1% market share over the next three years. For more information, please visit:


Airtel Business enters into strategic partnership with IntelliSmart for powering up to 20 million smart meters

  • To offer end-to-end IoT solution for smart metering including Head end system, Cloud and Analytics 

India, December 21, 2023
Bharti Airtel (“Airtel”), one of India’s leading telecommunications service providers, today, announced that it has formed a strategic partnership to power up to 20 million smart meters with IntelliSmart Infrastructure Private Limited, a leading smart metering and digital solutions provider. This partnership also marks Airtel’s foray into high end applications such as Advance metering infrastructure along with Cloud and Analytics. This is the largest such deal in the smart metering space in the country. It will significantly contribute towards Airtel’s fast-growing IoT deployment across sectors.


Airtel’s IoT proposition includes its proprietary platform the “Airtel IoT Hub” which will help the utility track and monitor these smart meters with advanced analytics while maintaining extremely high reliability augmented with telco grade security. Housed on Airtel’s own cloud network, the IoT hub will allow enterprise users the capability to connect and manage billions of devices and applications in a highly secure and seamless fashion.


Ganesh Lakshminarayanan – CEO, Airtel Business (India) said about the venture, “We have further strengthened our market leadership as the largest IoT enabler in the country. IoT is one of the fastest-growing business segments for Airtel Business and, with this deal, we are now strategically positioned to play a pivotal role in driving the Govt. of India’s vision of digitising 250 million conventional meters to smart meters. As we connect the devices across the country on our platform, we will exponentially grow our current IoT market share of 55.4% (as on Q1 FY23-24).”


Anil Rawal – MD & CEO, Intellismart Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. had this to say, “India’s smart metering programme is one of the significant steps taken by the government to modernise the power distribution sector. Smart meters are critical building blocks for smart grids and a fundamental enabler of the digitalisation efforts of the power system. As we set forward to implement one of India’s largest portfolios of smart meters, we are relying on some of the most able and potent partners in the sector for various solution elements to support the successful deployment of our Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) solutions. We are confident that the on-boarding of Airtel as a strategic partner will be a significant step towards our goal of creating strong associations to strengthen our infrastructure solution with a resilient and secure cloud-hosted cellular communication network.”


The Government of India has the ambitious vision of replacing 250 million conventional meters with Smart Meters in the next five years as part of the AMI initiative. Airtel IoT aims to play a pivotal role in enabling this vision of the government with its unique capabilities. Power sector digitisation aided by the Government of India's push to usher in transparency and consumer friendly measures in this sector will see innovation such as Smart Meters become commonplace.


About Airtel: Headquartered in India, Airtel is a global communications solutions provider with over 500 Mn customers in 17 countries across South Asia and Africa. The company ranks amongst the top three mobile operators globally and its networks cover over two billion people. Airtel is India’s largest integrated communications solutions provider and the second largest mobile operator in Africa. Airtel’s retail portfolio includes high-speed 4G/5G mobile broadband, Airtel Xstream Fiber that promises speeds up to 1 Gbps with convergence across linear and on-demand entertainment, streaming services spanning music and video, digital payments and financial services. For enterprise customers, Airtel offers a gamut of solutions that includes secure connectivity, cloud and data center services, cyber security, IoT, Ad Tech and cloud-based communication. For more details visit


About IntelliSmart: IntelliSmart Infrastructure Private Limited is India’s leading smart metering and digital solutions provider. It is a joint venture of Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) and National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF), established with the core purpose of becoming the most preferred digital partner of the utilities. Our organisational culture is built on the core values of Integrity, Respect, Innovation and Sustainability, which influence our everyday endeavours and collective practices.


IntelliSmart, as a digital solutions provider, aims to create a difference in the power distribution sector with digital interventions while shouldering the responsibility of mass-scale rollout of smart meters under RDSS. With smart meter infrastructure, consumer data management and AI/ML-based analysis, the company seeks to create considerable value for state utilities by enabling them to develop additional revenue sources. Eventually, smart metering will help create a robust, resilient, flexible smart grids that can integrate renewable energy seamlessly to meet India’s growing power demand. For more information, visit

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

NephroPlus and Indian Society of Nephrology (ISN) announce 'RENOVATE': The Data-Driven Academic Contest at ISNCON 2023

National -December 20, 2023The Indian Society of Nephrology (ISN) and NephroPlus have jointly announced the launch of 'RENOVATE,' an unprecedented academic contest at the 53rd Annual National Conference (ISNCON 2023) of the Indian Society of Nephrology.

The conference was held from 14th to 16th December 2023 in Kolkata, the city of Joy that flows with creative energy. The conference featured several ground breaking sessions and discussions that fostered data-driven excellence in the field of nephrology. It also hosted faculty from all over the country and the world who will share their knowledge and experience with the students.

RENOVATE stands as a pioneering academic initiative for the young Nephrologists in India to conduct clinical research on the clinical database from patient population of NephroPlus. Qualified Nephrologists must be ISN-registered members with less than three years of experience.


It is a reflection of NephroPlus’ commitment to promote the spirit of research and innovation among young professionals. RENOVATE is intended to help renal professionals learn from the largest dialysis patient database in India. The lessons learned, we hope will help understand practice pattern, outcome, generate hypothesis and pave the way for future intervention clinical trials.

Dr. Suresh Sankar, Senior VP, Global Clinical Affairs at NephroPlus,  excited about this novel addition to ISNCON 2023, stated, "RENOVATE embodies our commitment to fostering excellence and innovation in the field of Nephrology. We believe that it fills the void in this space and is a landmark initiative unmatched by Indian health care provider."

Commenting on the contest, Mr. Kamal Shah, Co-Founder of NephroPlussaid, "At NephroPlus, we are committed to advancing the field of nephrology through research and education. RENOVATE supports our mission by providing a venue for aspiring Nephrologists to showcase their skills and contribute to the advancement of our field."

Participants who are keen to register for RENOVATE can fill out the form by visiting:



Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Thane’s one of the largest-ever Clubhouse opens up for Raymond Realty TenX Habitat residents

~The newly inaugurated clubhouse holds built-up area built up of 51,000 sq.ft with unparalleled amenities that offers an aspirational yet affordable lifestyle~

Sets new benchmark of handover of clubhouse to customers before project completion

Customers can use facilities prior to getting possession of their residential units

Key features include an indoor multipurpose hall, a squash and badminton court for sports enthusiasts, a theatre for movie lovers, a modern gymnasium equipped with the latest fitness equipment, and a serene swimming pool 

Equipped with a state of the art, a first of its kind community kitchen 

Tuesday, 19 December 2023: Raymond Group’s real estate venture, Raymond Realty celebrated a momentous occasion today as it inaugurated Thane’s one of largest ever clubhouse for Ten X Habitat its maiden project. Delivered well in advance before the completion of entire Ten X Habitat project, the clubhouse marks yet another significant milestone that followed the phase of the one handover of Ten X Habitat project, where three out of ten towers were completed in December 2022 and made available to residents 24 months ahead of the RERA timelines. 

The inauguration event saw the Chairman and Managing Director of Raymond Group, Gautam Hari Singhania and celebrating the joyous moment Expressing his enthusiasm, Gautam Hari Singhania, Chairman and Managing Director, Raymond Ltd said, "Today is a proud moment for Raymond Realty as we deliver on our promise to provide not just homes but create vibrant communities. This massive clubhouse has been thoughtfully designed in an endeavor to provide people a space that fosters connections, creates memories, and encourages them to have a healthy lifestyle.”

Spanning over 51000 square feet, this newly inaugurated clubhouse is one the largest and greenest in Thane. It boasts of an array of amenities designed to cater to the diverse interests and preferences of the residents. The massive clubhouse features a multipurpose hall, a squash and badminton court for sports enthusiasts, a theatre for movie lovers, a modern gymnasium equipped with the latest fitness equipment, and a serene swimming pool for relaxation. Some of the first of its kind amenities include a catering kitchen that serves as a community kitchen giving residents the flexibility to cook meals for their guests in a larger space. The clubhouse is poised to become the focal point of social and recreational activities within the Ten X Habitat. In a first of its kind move, customers who are yet to get possession of their flats can also avail the clubhouse facility. This approach is aimed at ensuring that every member of the Ten X Habitat community can benefit from the amenities and enjoy a holistic living experience.

About Raymond Realty

The Raymond Group entered the real estate space with Raymond Realty, a venture exclusively spearheaded by Gautam Hari Singhania. The same dedication to quality, minute details and absolute style that is the Group’s legacy, will now take a form in luxurious residential spaces. The fabric of choice this time is brick and mortar. They have woven into residences that offer the man-about-town and his family a complete lifestyle. With the simple belief that the Indian consumers deserve more than what is being offered; Raymond Realty’s conviction is to Go Beyond all conventions in real estate. 

Introducing a new standard of living – one which pushes the bar on quality, design, comfort, convenience, technology and service to give today’s home buyer the kind of space they are genuinely proud to own. Built on the principle of ‘Go Beyond’ each project under Raymond Realty aims to re-imagine every expectation you have from your home by going the extra mile. Every home incorporates our virtues of excellence, style and a timeless appeal in creating modern living spaces like never before.

To know more, visit us here:

EbixCash Operations Insulated from the US-Only Chapter 11 Filing

NOIDA, INDIA – December 19, 2023 – EbixCash Limited today announced that its operations in India will not be affected, by the strategic US -only Chapter 11 process undertaken in the United States by Ebix, Inc. 

EbixCash reiterated that the Chapter 11 proceedings apply to Ebix entities in the United States only and Ebix’s approximately 200 affiliates outside the United States are not included in the U.S.-only Chapter 11 filing and will continue to operate normally. EbixCash companies in India, besides all international subsidiaries and their franchisees around the world are not included in the Chapter 11 filing. All worldwide operations of the Company will continue to operate in the ordinary course and without any interruption.

EbixCash has strong stand alone financials and governance, with its cash flows solely available for its own needs. Chapter 11 process mandates insulation between the international companies and the US company in terms of any intercompany dealings.

Škoda Auto India introduces Service CAM to enhance after-sales experience for customers

A new digital tool, representing transparency, convenience and modern technology for customers

Lends customers ability to remotely decide on additional work  

Smartphone app-based implementation and solution

Operational across all Škoda Auto dealerships 

Mumbai, December 19, 2023 – Škoda Auto India, in its endeavour to improve customer satisfaction, has launched its all-new Service CAM initiative. The Service CAM, a smartphone app-based tool allows Škoda Auto India customers to remotely approve service and repair jobs of their Škoda cars while it is in service. 

Service CAM is an all-new digital tool that enables dealerships to send video documentation of the vehicle to customers. In case of unforeseen defects observed during repairing of the car, customers receive a personalised link via SMS or e-mail, which includes the video and cost calculations towards the repairs. Customers can decide from the comfort of their homes or office, whether they would like the work to be carried out or not. Service CAM makes back and forth calls redundant and provides complete transparency to customers. 

Škoda Service CAM is currently active across the entire network of Škoda Auto India dealerships in the country. Customers can contact the nearest dealership for more details.

Further information

Škoda Auto India

Saurabh Dedhia

Product and Brand Communications 

T - +91 22 3313 7046 

MSL India 

Ankit Daswani

Group Head

T - +91 9833559433

Škoda Auto

is successfully steering through the new decade with the Next Level – Škoda Strategy 2030. 

aims to be one of the five best-selling brands in Europe by 2030 with an attractive line-up in the entry-level segments and additional e-models.

is emerging as the leading European brand in important growth markets such as India or North Africa.

currently offers its customers twelve passenger-car series: the Fabia, Rapid, Scala, Octavia and Superb as well as the Kamiq, Karoq, Kodiaq, Enyaq, Enyaq Coupé, Slavia and Kushaq.

delivered over 731,000 vehicles to customers around the world in 2022.

has been a member of the Volkswagen Group for 30 years. The Volkswagen Group is one of the most successful vehicle manufacturers in the world. 

independently manufactures and develops not only vehicles but also components such as MEB battery systems, engines and transmissions in association with the Group.

operates at three sites in the Czech Republic; has additional production capacity in China, Slovakia and India primarily through Group partnerships, as well as in Ukraine with a local partner.

employs over 40,000 people globally and is active in over 100 markets.

Škoda Auto India 

fascinating customers in India since 2001. 

offers 3 models in India – Slavia, Kushaq and Kodiaq

present in more than 145 cities across the country with over 250 customer touchpoints 

recorded triple digit growth of 125% with 53,721 units sold in 2022

Škoda Auto India website - www.š

Škoda Auto India Communications Twitter Handle - @SkodaIndia_PR

Monday, December 18, 2023

G-SHOCK marked its 40th Anniversary celebrations with SHOCK THE WORLD powered by Vh1 India in Mumbai featuring Icons, Vicky Kaushal and Father of G-SHOCK, Kikuo Ibe

(L-R) Mr. Hideki Imai - Managing Director, Casio India, Mr. Shigenori Itoh - Executive Managing Officer, Casio Computer Co., Ltd, G-SHOCK Brand Ambassador - Vicky Kaushal & Mr. Kikuo Ibe - Father of G-SHOCK at SHOCK THE WORLD, Mumbai

~ The rocking line-up of artists including KR$NA, Paradox, Kayan and OG Shez celebrated the fusion of youth sub-cultures in India with the 4 decades of Absolute Toughness~

National, 19th December 2023: The heart of Mumbai pulsated with excitement as G-SHOCK, the trailblazing force in unbreakable watches, in collaboration with Vh1 India, brought SHOCK THE WORLD to India on December 16th, 2023. This global phenomenon, which was held in major cities around the world throughout the year, concluded 2023 in Mumbai.

Marking G-SHOCK's 40-year legacy of resilience and innovation, the event was led by Bollywood actor and G-SHOCK brand ambassador Vicky Kaushal, and witnessed the convergence of the emerging youth street cultures with innovation, resilience, and style, creating an unforgettable experience for the G-SHOCK loyalists, fans, watch enthusiasts and audiences alike.  

Four decades ago, a visionary named Kikuo Ibe dared to dream of crafting an indestructible timepiece. After overcoming numerous challenges, he triumphed in giving birth to G-SHOCK, a brand that has now gained a global sensation. Over the past 40 years, G-SHOCK watches have seamlessly adapted to incorporate cutting-edge technology and meticulous Japanese craftsmanship, consistently pushing the boundaries of what a timepiece can be. Today, G-SHOCK has transcended beyond being just as a watch brand; it has become a cultural icon, resonating with individuals from various genres such as fashion, sports, art, music, and more, who value toughness and authenticity.

The event celebrated the actor Vicky Kaushal as the Face for G-SHOCK in the esteemed presence of Kikuo Ibe - the Father of G-SHOCK, Mr. Shigenori Itoh - Executive Managing Officer, Casio Computer Co., Ltd and Mr. Hideki Imai - Managing Director, Casio India. Together, they engaged in a captivating dialogue, sharing insights into the evening's proceedings, reflecting on the brand's remarkable journey, and offering a glimpse into the exciting future of G-SHOCK. The additional highlight of the event was the unveiling of the first-ever TEAM G-SHOCK in India which includes a stellar assembly of athletes and artists who embody the epitome of ‘Absolute Toughness’. The young Cricketing Icon, Shubman Gill would be leading the pack along with the distinguished rally racer, Harith Noah, freestyle rapper and MTV hustle runner-up, Paradox, the Skateboarding Crew with The skateboarding squad with Sagar Waghela, Jay Singh, Nikhil Shelatka and Kushal Gaikwad, and India’s Best Break Dancer and Redbull Athlete, Arif Chaudhary.

This was followed by the SHOCK THE WORLD Event, living up to its name with jaw-dropping feats by the Father of G-SHOCK, Kikuo Ibe showcasing the rugged durability of G-SHOCK watches, alongside the magnanimous presence of Vicky Kaushal. The night unfolded with TEAM G-SHOCK member Paradox dazzling the audience with his performance, followed by a concert featuring the sensational KR$NA and electrifying DJ sets by Kayan and OG Shez. 

Expressing his enthusiasm about the event, Hideki Imai, Managing Director, Casio India said, “SHOCK THE WORLD serves as a vibrant celebration of an iconic brand, which brings together individuals who share the spirit and enthusiasm for the legendary timepieces. This global phenomenon, which has historically served as a dynamic platform for emerging and established artists from various genres, has made its appearance in India after a successful run in 34 countries. We are honored to orchestrate G-SHOCK SHOCK THE WORLD in Mumbai with Vicky Kaushal who is a perfect embodiment of toughness, endurance and style. He truly echoes the spirit of G-SHOCK with his bold authentic choices and a relentless pursuit of excellence. 

G-SHOCK is deeply committed towards the growth and empowerment of the emerging sub-cultures across the globe, and we hope our endeavors such as SHOCK THE WORLD contribute towards the advancement of the dynamic spirit of youth culture in India.”

G-SHOCK Brand Ambassador Vicky Kaushal expressed his thoughts on this partnership. He said, "My warm wishes and congratulations to G-SHOCK on its 40th anniversary. I am honored to represent a brand that has had such a profound impact on shaping youth culture globally. The brand's commitment to pushing boundaries and its resolute 'never give up' attitude deeply resonate with me. Witnessing the energy and passion at the SHOCK THE WORLD event in Mumbai was truly exhilarating, and I look forward to embarking on this journey with G-SHOCK.”

The Father of G-SHOCK, Kikuo Ibe, expressed his thoughts on the event, saying, “I am thrilled to be part of SHOCK THE WORLD in Mumbai, where I witnessed the vibrant, confident, and dynamic youth of this incredible country. The event celebrated G-SHOCK's enduring 40-year product legacy through an enigmatic fusion of sub-cultures. India, with its diverse melting pot of cultures, provides the perfect backdrop for hosting our event with the dynamic youth of the country. Meeting individuals across different genres – music, dance, sports, fashion – who fearlessly embrace the G-SHOCK spirit of 'dare to dream and never give up' was truly inspiring. We eagerly anticipate offering exciting experiences in India and remain committed to supporting and expanding the vibrant youth culture scene across the country.”

Produced by Viacom 18 Live, G-SHOCK SHOCK THE WORLD offered an immersive experience to the audiences with the curated Experiential Zones, engaging attendees through our rich product history & exciting innovations, subculture inspirations and product and cultural evolution which further strengthens the ethos of absolute toughness. The G-SHOCK VAULT showcased an exclusive collection of 40th Anniversary models, iconic collaborations and milestone models which provided enthusiasts with a glimpse into the brand's evolution over the years. Some of the iconic models showcased included the first-ever G-SHOCK DW-5000C, the first thermo sensor equipped watch DW-6100, the first G-SHOCK with electro-luminescence backlight DW-6600, the first tough solar G-SHOCK DW-9300, world’s first watch with both GPS and Radiowave time calibration signal reception GPW- 1000. The Street Culture Zone, adorned with vibrant murals and wall art, reflected the dynamic spirit of G-SHOCK. The celebration reached its zenith, symbolizing the fusion of toughness, authenticity and differentiated experience that defines G-SHOCK. The event saw enthusiastic participation and excitement as attendees witnessed the Father of G-SHOCK in India and enjoyed enthralling performances, along with F&B experiences by Impresario’s SOCIAL & BOSS Burger.

Since its inception in 2008 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of G-SHOCK, SHOCK THE WORLD has evolved into an annual spectacle, solidifying its status as one of the most eagerly awaited street culture events. In the heart of Mumbai, SHOCK THE WORLD marked a momentous milestone in G-SHOCK's history, bringing together the brand's past, present, and future. With four decades of innovation and resilience, G-SHOCK continues to inspire and redefine the world of timekeeping.


About G-SHOCK: 

G-SHOCK, the pioneering timepiece that revolutionized the very concept of toughness.

In 1981, a daring challenge to prevailing norms ignited the genesis of G-SHOCK. Driven by Mr. Kikuo Ibe’s unwavering conviction that a watch could be crafted to withstand any shocks, Project Team Tough was formed to translate this vision into reality. Over a span of approximately two years, this team meticulously developed more than 200 prototypes. Their resolute efforts culminated in the breakthrough shock-resistant yet sophisticated and streamlined architecture we know today. 

Since its inception, G-SHOCK has embarked on a relentless journey of evolution, ceaselessly pursuing greater resilience and bold stylish appeal across structure, materials, and functionalities. Envisioned in 1983, G-SHOCK now stands on the cusp of its 40th Anniversary in 2023, having left an indelible mark by retailing over 100 million watches across 100 nations. Strengthened by this remarkable legacy, G-SHOCK remains resolute in its quest for enduring strength, ever ready to conquer new frontiers of toughness.

About Casio India Co. Pvt. Ltd.: 

Casio India Co. Pvt. Ltd.(CIC) is the Indian subsidiary of Casio Computer Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan, one of the world's leading manufacturers of consumer electronics and business equipment solutions. Casio India has established a dynamic presence in the Indian market since 1996, emerging as a leading and cherished consumer goods manufacturer. Casio India's range of products include sales and marketing of Timepieces, Electronic Musical Instruments, Desktop Calculators, Scientific Calculators, Label Printers and Clocks. 

Setting the benchmark for excellence, Casio India is dedicated to embodying the spirit of innovation and quality that defines the Casio legacy. With a strong commitment to its corporate creed of "creativity and contribution," Casio has consistently translated this ethos into the creation of innovative products making a positive impact on society.

For more information, visit