The prevailing bilateral frost between India and China is having a chilling effect on local trade as the south Asian nation prepares to celebrate its annual festival of colours.
Around 60 million members of the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) have called for the boycott of Chinese goods on the eve of Holi, one of India’s most popular festivals. Some business owners even plan to use such products to make the traditional bonfire—Holi symbolises the burning of an evil demon in Hindu mythology—today (March 19) across 1,500 locations in the country.
The row only highlights the significance Chinese products have assumed in Indian trade and other areas.
“The entire garment and electronics industries are highly dependent on China. Lots of Chinese apps like TikTok are gaining traction, too,” said Yugal Joshi, vice-president of Texas-based consultancy Everest Group. Four out of five of the top smartphones in India are China-made. Even plastic buckets, idols of Hindu gods and goddesses, and winter coats are mostly manufactured in China.
It might be late to the party, but the Swedish music streaming app Spotify is trying really hard to make up for the lost time in India.
The Stockholm-based company launched in the country yesterday (Feb. 27) with freebies and affordable rates to woo price-sensitive Indians, besides announcing plans to go more vernacular. Among other things, Spotify’s ad-free monthly subscription is available in India for Rs119 ($1.67), significantly lower than the $9.99 in the US. In fact, premium plans start at just Rs13 for a daylong subscription.
“India is a price sensitive market and we love freebies. Spotify is trying to exploit this sentiment and I believe this is a smart move,” said Yugal Joshi, vice-president at the consulting firm Everest Group.
Major digital services delivered from tier-2/3 Indian cities: social & interactive, cloud, analytics, automation, mobility, cyber security
Key tier-2/3 digital services delivery locations in India: Size of India tier-2/3 cities digital services market
The rise of India-based Global In-house Centers’ (GIC) role in supporting enterprises’ digital transformation through digital technologies, such as RPA, mobility, and IoT, has been significant in the past few years. In 2017 alone, over 50 percent of the GIC set-ups in India were focused on building/enhancing enterprises’ digital capabilities.
Indeed, enterprises are making their India GICs the hub for developing solutions and products for next-gen technologies, such as machine learning, NLP, predictive learning, cognitive, and blockchain. Recent examples include Samsung, State Street, and Western Union.
- Talent availability: The ability to scale next-gen skills at low cost is a key differentiator. For instance, India accounts for 50-60 percent of the talent pool employed for delivery of automation services from offshore/nearshore locations. A strong base of third-party service providers has also established digital and technology labs in India
- Mature delivery model: India accounts for 30-35 percent of all nearshore/offshore GIC set-ups, and more than 45 percent of their FTEs. Mature operations and middle-/back-office delivery presence in India give them a strong foundation on which to build their digital efforts. And it allows them to develop more integrated operations, technology, digital, and analytics solutions to address the evolving business needs of their parent organizations
- Strong start-up ecosystem: India has one of the most evolved technology start-up ecosystems in the world. As of 2016, it had more than 4,500 tech start-ups employing a pool of around 100,000 FTEs. This situation not only allows enterprises to access next-gen technological solutions, but also to tap into the ecosystem to accelerate progress when additional resources are needed
- Economies of scale and cost benefits: While cost may not be the primary driver, it certainly is a key differentiator. Budgets are always scarce, and needs are always plenty. India offers quality talent at lower cost and allows companies to drive low cost innovation and development
How are the best-of-the-best enterprises and GICs leveraging India and other locations for digital? To expand our insights beyond the work we conduct with our clients, we’ve launched a Digital Pinnacle™ survey to learn more about successful GICs’ digital journeys. We invite you to participate in the survey and/or to share your thoughts and experiences with us at [email protected] or [email protected].
Watch this space for more insights on GICs and for the deep-dive survey results.
Skills such as intuition & innovation, design thinking, pattern recognition, leadership, and problem solving are likely to become highly critical to GICs for service delivery in the future
- Most GICs believe that they will face severe shortages in availability of talent for these critical skills
The reason for the widening skills-gap include:
- Limited supply of ready-to-hire talent for these skills
- Increased competition among firms to hire the right talent
- Low propensity to train and lack of effective ways of learning & development / training solutions for required skills