Sunday, May 2, 2010

Business trivia

Firsts in Cyberworld

Mosaicworld's first web browser for Windows was released in 1993

The Tech, published by students at the Massachusetts Institute of

Technology, was world's first online newspaper in May 1993

Alta Vista-world's first multi-lingual search engine was launched

in 1995.

Hotmail-world's first free e-mail was launched on US Independence Day on

July 4, 1996

World's first banner advertisement appeared on AT&T website for a

drink called Zima in 1995

Radio HKworld's first full time web radio station was launched in 1995

Since its completion in 1973, the Sears Tower has been as much a

part of Chicago's cultural heritage. Recently, when Willis Group

Holdings leased 125,000 square feet in the 110-story tower, the U.K.

insurance giant got a little something extra with the deal: The right to

slap its name on the outside.



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Titan Eye+ showrooms offer optometry through staff trained by Shankar Netralaya.

The Beetle was Adolf Hitler's idea. He was the one who actually

sketched it out and laid down the parameters based on which Dr

Ferdinand Porsche engineered the vehicle. Among other things,

Hitler specified that the car should be able to accommodate four, be

powered by an air-cooled engine, cruise at 100 kph and cost 1,000

Reichsmarks. Hitler's KdF-wagen (Strength through Joy) went

on to become world famous as the Beetle, and its appeal transcended boundaries,

generations and class divides.

Saint 100 per cent juice was launched by Parle Agro.

The Narang Group, marketers and distributors of premium food, have priced Qua,

mineral water from the Himalayas, at Rs 40 a litre.

ABN-Amro Bank India head Meera Sanyal who contested the Lok Sabha

elections in 2009 is a winner of the Karmaveer Puraskaar, a national

people's award instituted by iCongo, a countrywide confederation of

NGOs, for her work in social development.

P&G has come up with a new addition to its marketing strategy in

the form of a character called Sangeeta Bhabhi, a dedicated

housewife. The personality was conceived to push P&G's leading

brands, Tide and Head & Shoulders as a dual proposition called

'kamyab jodi' in rural areas of the country.

The Penny Black, the world's first adhesive postage

stamp of a public postal system, was issued in the United Kingdom on 1

May 1840. To this day, all British stamps bear a profile of the reigning

monarch somewhere on the design, and are the only stamps that do not

name their country of origin.

The Routemaster is a model of double-decker bus that was

introduced by Associated Equipment Company (AEC) in 1954 and

produced until 1968. Primarily front-engined, rear open platform buses,

a small number of variants were produced with doors and/or front

entrances. Introduced in 1956, the Routemaster saw continuous service

in London until 2005, and currently remains on two heritage routes in

central London.

The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft

used by the Royal Air Force and many other Allied countries



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through the Second World War and on into the 1950s as a frontline fighter and in

secondary roles.

It was produced in greater numbers than any other Allied design. The Spitfire was the

only Allied fighter in production throughout the Second World War.

The Spitfire was designed by R. J. Mitchell, chief designer at Supermarine Aviation

Works, since 1928 a subsidiary of Vickers-Armstrongs.

The name Spitfire was suggested by Sir Robert MacLean, director of Vickers-

Armstrongs at the time, who called his daughter Ann "a little spitfire"

Bowler hat

The bowler hat was devised in 1849 by the London hat-makers Thomas and William

Bowler to fulfil an order placed by the firm of hatters Lock &

Company which had been commissioned by a customer to design a

close-fitting, low-crowned hat to protect his gamekeepers' heads

from low-hanging branches while on horseback.

The keepers had previously worn top hats, which were easily

knocked off and damaged. The customer was Edward Coke who

reportedly placed it on the floor and stamped hard on it twice to test

its strength.

The hat withstood this test and Coke paid 12 shillings for it.

In accordance with Locks & Company's usual practice, the hat was called the "Coke" hat

after the customer who had ordered it.

Peaking in popularity towards the end of the 19th century, the bowler hat offered a middle

ground between the formality of the top hat, which was associated with the upper classes,

and the casual soft flat caps worn by the working classes.

Cheddar cheese is a relatively hard, pale-yellow to off-white, and

sometimes sharp-tasting cheese originating in the English village

of Cheddar, in Somerset. The European Union recognises West

Country Farmhouse Cheddar as a protected designation of

origin (PDO). To meet this standard the cheese must be made in

the traditional manner using local ingredients in one of the four

designated counties of South West England: Somerset, Devon, Dorset, or Cornwall.

News Corp takeover of social networking site MySpace was code-named Project Ivory.

Murdoch saw MySpace as the next great distribution outlet for content from his Fox TV

and movie studios.

Domino's launched its "Big Taste Bailout" campaign

Diet Coke recently returned to the first-ever slogan–"Just for the

taste of it."

Judith Leiber, the American luxury brand synonymous with

elegance, style, and sophistication, is known for its exquisite



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handbags. Judith Leiber, the founder of the company, was born and raised in Budapest,

Hungary, where she studied the craft of handbag making during World War II. In 1947

Leiber and her husband Gerson Leiber immigrated to the U.S. and after many years

working for leading New York handbag manufacturers, Leiber launched the Judith Leiber

Company in 1963, with the support of her artistic husband. The couple sold the company

and retired in 1998.

The Mini, designed by Sir Alec

Issigonis for the British Motor

Corporation as a fuelconserving

little runabout, was

an iconic car design almost

from the moment the first car

left the assembly-line in 1959.

The car is currently made by


JAVA is the ticker symbol of Sun Microsystems.

Nirula's: Indian McDonalds

Nirula's, a well-known name in the hospitality industry, had like all success stories a

small beginning. The Nirula's Family came to Delhi in 1928. The Nirula brothers before

going into the Hotel and Food Service Industry tried their hand at various professions

including running a pharmacy, optician shop and a photo studio.

However, they soon realized the paucity of good eating-places in and around New Delhi.

Though completely new to the business, they began "HOTELINDIA" in 1934 at

Connaught Place with 12 rooms, a restaurant and a bar license.

The starting of the 'Chinese Room' Restaurant and introduction of espresso coffee for

the first time in India by Nirula's was done in the 1950's. The 60's witnessed the opening

of two specialty restaurants, La Boheme a modern restaurant serving Hungarian food &

Gufa an Indian specialty restaurant. The Potpourri restaurant with the first Salad Bar in

India was also opened in this period.

In June 2006, Navis Capital Partners and Managing Director, Samir Kuckreja acquired

the Nirula's Group of Companies.



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A start-stop system automatically shuts down and restarts an automobile's internal

combustion engine to reduce the amount of time the engine spends idling, thereby

improving fuel economy. This is advantageous for vehicles which spend significant

amounts of time waiting at stop lights or frequently come to a stop in traffic jams. Earliest

vehicles to use this technology–Volkswagen Polo and Fiat Regata models of the 1980s

Tata Teleservices has created a Customer Relationship Council which will evaluate its

customer service. Its CRM programmes include Anubhav (hopes to increase overall

sensitivity towards the end-customer) & Pulse (programme designed to get a first-hand

feel of what the customer expresses and experiences during his interaction with the


The Theory of Constraints (TOC) is a business philosophy invented by Israeli physicist

and management specialist Dr Eliyahu Goldratt in the 1980s. The theory is all about

striving to achieve the global objective or the "goal" of any system by understanding and

analysing the cause and effect relationships between the parts of the system and the

variations within it.

The founder of L'Oreal, French chemist Eugene Schueller, invented the first sunscreen

in 1936. Schueller also invented the first synthetic hair dye in 1907.

Young Indians ("Yi") is an integral part of CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) and

comprises of a group of young Indian achievers and professionals

below the age of 40 years from various walks of life. Yi believes that

young Indians can contribute to the community and society at large.

Yi is a forum that focuses on issues of national importance and

motivates a generational change in the economic and social agenda of


Personna American Safety Razor Company, owner of the Glide brand, has been in

business for over 125 years.

The Company traces its origins to Brooklyn,

New York, where in 1875 the Kampfe

Brothers introduced the Star, the first

safety razor manufactured in the United States.

In 1906, the several businesses begun by the Kampfes and their workers were

consolidated as American Safety Razor Company.

Mattel is a global leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of toys and family

products. Apart from Barbie, the Mattel portfolio includes best-selling brands Hot

Wheels, Matchbox, American Girl, Radica and Tyco R/C, as well as Fisher-Price

brands, including Little People, Power Wheels and a wide array of entertainmentinspired

toy lines.



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Karl Elsener invented the Swiss

Army Knife.

After the death of his mother, the

company founder chooses her first

name "Victoria" as the company


In 1921, Stainless steel is invented

(also known as "inox"). The new

brand name "Victorinox" is produced by combining "inox" with the

name "Victoria".

From his first job as a $1.20 per week bobbin boy in a Pittsburgh

cotton mill, Andrew Carnegie came to be regarded as a ruthless

tyrant and the greatest American capitalist whose business deals with

Rockefeller and Morgan in the 1890s netted him millions.

Two-wheeler Pulsar gets its name from the term for highly

magnetized rotating neutron stars which emit a beam of detectable

electromagnetic radiation in the form of radio waves.

Lauda Air was established by a former Formula One world motor racing champion and

named after him, began operations in 1985. It belongs to the Austrian Airlines group.

PetroChina Company became the world's first company to be valued at $1 trillion on

its first day of listing on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in 2007.

ESPN was originally thought up by Bill Rasmussen, a television sports reporter for

WWLP, the NBC affiliate in Springfield, Massachusetts. In the mid-1970s

Actress Shilpa Shetty, who has landed here after winning the

Celebrity Big Brother show, is all set to write a cookery book called

Curry Rules

Aunt Jemima is a trademark for pancake flour, syrup, and other

breakfast foods currently owned by the Quaker Oats Company.

Uncle Ben's is a brand name for parboiled ("converted") rice and

related food products owned by Mars, Inc. The brand was first

used by a company called Converted Rice Inc. which was later

bought by Mars. Uncle Ben's products carry the image of an

elderly African-American man dressed in a bow tie. According to

Mars, Uncle Ben was an African-American rice grower in Texas

known for the quality of his rice. Gordon L. Harwell, an



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entrepreneur who had supplied rice to the armed forces in World War II, chose the name

Uncle Ben's as a means to expand his marketing efforts to the general public.

Elle (he title, in French, means 'she') is a worldwide women's magazine founded by

Pierre Lazareff and his wife Hélène Gordon in 1945.

Oral-B was the first toothbrush brand to go to the moon when they were aboard the

Apollo 11 mission. Oral-B is a combination of oral hygiene and the letter B, which stands

for the word better.

Stafford Cripps coined the term "Mixed Economy" to describe societies which include

a relatively large public sector within a capitalist economy in relation to the British

economy in 1949.

In 1998, Sony accidentally sold 700,000 camcorders that had the technology to see

through people's clothes.

Ivory soap slogan "99-44/100% Pure" was cleverly invented by Harley Proctor who

with the help of chemists determined that Ivory soap was only 56/100 pure. Proctor

simply subtracted 56 from 100 and came up with "99-44/100% Pure".

The first commercial microwave oven was called the '1161 Radarange' and was the size

of a refrigerator.

The world's first motel opened in San Luis Obispo, California in 1925. It was initially

called "Milestone Motel," and later changed to "Motel Inn."

The largest hotel in the world is the MGM Grand, which has 5,034 rooms and is

located in Las Vegas, Nevada.

When Scott Paper Co. first started manufacturing toilet paper they did not put their

name on the product because of embarrassment

Honda's trademark acronym VTEC stands for Variable Valve Timing and Electronic

Lift Control.

The idea of Christmas cards was invented by Englishman Henry Cole in 1843.

In late 2007, a tracking tool called "Beacon" caught users off-guard by broadcasting

information about their shopping habits and activities at other websites. After initially

defending the practice, Facebook ultimately allowed users to turn Beacon off.

Moody's is a trusted independent provider of economic analysis, data, and

forecasting and credit risk management



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Scuderia Toro Rosso (Italian for Team Red Bull) is one of two Formula One teams

owned by Austrian beverage company Red Bull.

Red Bull Racing is one of two Formula One teams owned by Austrian beverage

company Red Bull.

Brand icon: AGFA

The Agfa-Gevaert Group develops, produces and distributes

an extensive range of analog and digital imaging systems

and IT solutions, mainly for the printing industry and the

healthcare sector, as well as for specific industrial

applications. Agfa-Gevaert has three focused business groups: Agfa Graphics, Agfa

HealthCare, and Agfa Materials.

1867: AGFA, it all began with color

In 1867, a color dye factory was established at the Rummelsburger near Berlin. In 1873, it

was registered as the Aktien-Gesellschaft für Anilin-Fabrikation (AGFA).

1894: The birth of 'L. Gevaert & Cie'

In 1890, the 22-year-old Lieven Gevaert established his own workshop in Antwerp

(Belgium), which was mainly used for manufacturing calcium paper for photography.

Barely four years later, the businessman Armand Seghers helped to establish the limited

stock company 'L. Gevaert & Cie'. The starting capital amounted

to just 20,000 Belgian francs (500 Euro).

1895: The first subsidiary abroad

L. Gevaert & Cie acquired the Parisian company 'Blue Star

Papers' introducing a new gelatine paper. This new subsidiary

further enhanced the success of Gevaert's paper line

1964: A historical marriage

Not only was it the 125th anniversary of photography, but 1964 was also the year of the

big merger between Gevaert and Agfa. In early 1964, Agfa AG, a 100% subsidiary of

Bayer merged with Gevaert Photo Producten N.V.



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ALCOA was earlier known as the Pittsburgh Reduction Company

Brand icon: Kolkata Knight Riders

Kolkata Knight Riders is a franchise of the 8 team

Indian Premier League. It was bought in Jan 2008

by Shah Rukh Khan's Red Chillies Entertainment

in partnership with actress Juhi Chawla and her

husband, Jai Mehta.

The official theme of the team is 'Korbo, Lorbo,

Jitbo Re' (We will do it, Fight for it, Win it) and

the official colours are black and gold.

The logo of the team consists of blazing golden

viking helmet against a black background with the

name of the team Kolkata Knight Riders written in

gold. The main theme of the team Korbo, Lorbo,

Jitbo Re (We will do it, Fight for it, Win it) has

been created by Vishal-Shekhar duo.

A Knight Rider album with several singers and

music composers including Usha Uthup and Bappi

Lahiri was also created. The tag line of the team is

All the King's Men.

The team's official color is black and gold. Black stands for the courage of Maa Kali and

gold stands for the spirit of winning. The jersey was created by fashion designer Manish


The team has a mascot named Hoog Lee, who is a lazy Royal Bengal Tiger and loves to

eat burgers.

Other big brands associated with the IPL Kolkata team were Housing Development and

Infrastructure (HDIL), Tag Heuer watches, Belmonte, and The Telegraph.

Kohinoor Foods Ltd. started as a small rice trading business by three Amritsar based

brothers, Jugal Kishore Arora, Satnam Arora & Gurnam Arora. This enterprise got

its first name–"Satnam Overseas Limited" (As the company grew, this enterprise was

later renamed as "Kohinoor Foods Limited"). In 2008, Kohinoor brand created a

Guinness Record by making "World's Largest Biryani" in Delhi.

On 8 June 1948, a Lockheed Constellation L-749A named Malabar Princess flew from

Bombay to London. This was the first long-haul international flight for Air India.

Ever Fresh, Karen and Delika are

brands owned by Mumbai based

Temptation Foods

Reliance Fresh offers meat products through Reliance Delight.



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T. Subbarami Reddy

T. Subbarami Reddy of the Indian National Congress from Andhra Pradesh is India's

richest politician with total declared assets of Rs 239.6 crore. He

started off as a contractor who built the world's biggest masonry

dam at Nagarjunasagar, Andhra Pradesh, in the 1960s.

A commerce graduate from Hyderabad's Nizam College, he

capitalised on investments through his Gayatri group in the

infrastructure, steel, mines and power businesses across the


His persuasive skills combined with his business interests, as film

producer and exhibitor, have brought many from Bollywood and

the Telugu film industry closer to the Congress.

He was a two-term member of the Lok Sabha—1996 and 1998—

from Visakhapatnam and is now a Rajya Sabha member

He has been Chairman of Thirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) for two full terms.

Cell is a microprocessor jointly developed by Sony, Toshiba, and IBM. The first major

commercial application of Cell was in Sony's PlayStation 3 game console.

The United Nations, Vodafone, and the Rockefeller Foundation have jointly launched

mHealth Alliance–to use mobile technology to provide better healthcare worldwide

Intel is pushing low-cost Atom chips designed to work on almost any operating system

and has also unveiled its own Linux-based operating system called Moblin.

Hyundai bought TV time during the Academy Awards after Ford and General Motors

(GM) pulled out.

Microsoft® My Phone service allows users to save phone's information to a passwordprotected

web site.

Comes with Music service from Nokia allows users 12 months of unlimited music

downloads from a collection of more than two million tracks, available first on Nokia's

5310 XpressMusic handset and on more models later.

HMT Limited was established in 1953 in technical collaboration with M/s. Oerlikon of


Shoe and apparel maker Nike is creating its Nike+ digital community where runners

share routes, get training advice, and even compete against one another.

During W.W. II General Motors converted its assembly lines to war production, not only

in the U.S., but in (and for) Nazi Germany as well! After the war GM had the nerve to sue

the U.S. Government for wartime damages to its German facilities.



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GM destroyed most of the nation's urban rail transit during the 1930s, 1940s, and early

1950s, by buying and then dismantling over 100 electric railway (streetcar) systems in 45

cities, including New York, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia. GM converted all these

systems to bus lines.

In 1965 a lawyer named Ralph Nader challenged the safety of GM's Corvair. GM not

only denied Nader's charges, but it hired a private detective to "dig up dirt" on Nader's

personal life. The ensuing scandal propelled Nader into his present position as America's

leading "consumer advocate."

Dr. Scholl's

As his medical acumen grew, William Scholl started tinkering with foot-care devices. In

1904, at age 22, he patented a mechanical arch support called a


The motto of Dr. Scholl was, "Early to bed, early to rise, work

like hell and advertise." Former shoemaker and shoe salesman,

William Scholl graduated in 1904 from medical school in

Illinois and patented his 1st arch support.

A firm believer in the power of advertising, Scholl held walking

contests throughout the country and sold "pedometers" for

calculating distances walked.

He also held a "Cinderella Foot Contest" in which he measured

foot imbalance on a machine called a Pedo-Graph. An award

was then given for the "most perfect foot."

"Foot doctor to the world," is the punch line of Dr. Scholl.

On April 6, 1925 on an Imperial Airways flight from London

to Paris, the blockbuster film, The Lost World, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was screened

for the passengers. It was the first in-flight full length feature movie ever shown and often

accepted as the world's first in-flight movie.

Peanut butter was invented by Dr. John Harvey Kellogg in 1895. In 1922, chemist

Joseph Rosefield fixed peanut butter's tendency to separate by adding hydrogenated

vegetable oil; he called the thick, creamy result Skippy (probably after a popular comic

strip), and a brand was born. Within the decade, Skippy was fighting it out with other

established brands like Peter Pan and Heinz.


VAIO is a sub-brand for many of Sony's computer products. It was originally an acronym

for Video Audio Integrated Operation, but since 2008 amended to Visual Audio

Intelligence Organizer to celebrate the brand's 10th year


The branding was created by Timothy Hanley to distinguish items



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that encompassed the use of consumer audio and video, as well as being conventional

computing products.

The VAIO logo also represents the integration of analog and digital technology. The

'VA' represents an analog wave and the 'IO' represents digital binary code.

􀂙–a Web site devoted to news, analysis and opinion on technology, the

Internet and media– is owned by Dow Jones, publisher of The Wall Street Journal.

The first issue of PARADE Magazine, subtitled "The Weekly Picture Newspaper,"

was published on May 31, 1941. It was packed with photographs left over from PM, an

experimental New York newspaper produced by Chicago businessman Marshall Field


Shortly before the 1929 stock-market crash that ushered in a global

recession, U.S. economist Irving Fisher made a rightly celebrated

forecast: "Stock prices have reached what looks like a permanently

high plateau." That should be enough to warn anyone off making

predictions, particularly where finance and business are concerned.

US based PACCAR is a global technology leader in the design,

manufacture and customer support of premium light-, medium- and heavy-duty trucks

under the Kenworth, Peterbilt and DAF nameplates.

The roots of Jessop & Company Ltd. go back to

1788 when Breen & Company was founded in

Calcutta. In 1820, Henry and George, sons of

William Jessop acquired Breen & Company. In

1973, the company was taken over by the

Government and in 1986 Jessop became a subsidiary

of Bharat Bhari Udyog Nigam Limited (BBUNL).

Adidas–'Bum Bum Bole', a Percept Picture Company film, starring Darsheel Safary. It

will have a special 'Impossible is Nothing' range for kids.

Goodyear TV commercial was extracted from 'Ta Ra Rum Pum'.

Bratz dolls come with names like Roxxi, Nazalia, Jade and Fianna.

Satyam Infoway acquisitions: India World Communications (ran popular websites

such as, and from Rajesh Jain for Rs 499 crore.

Other acquisitions include and (a portal promoted

by Headhunters, one of India's top executive search companies). Satyam Infoway was

merged with Satyam Computers in 2002.

Both Al Ries and Jack Trout started their business career in the advertising department

of General Electric.



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Godfrey Phillips India non-tobacco products: Funda Mint (punchline-Dil Se Desi),

Tea City (Swan Lake, Symphony, Super Cup, Super Cup Duet and Rangoli brands),

ColorBar and 24X7 Stores.

Author Mulk Raj Anand edited the art magazine 'Marg'.

Kundan Lal Saigal worked as a typewriter salesman for the Remington Typewriter


Rahul Gandhi worked at management consultancy firm, Monitor Group, co-founded by

management guru Michael Porter.

Grrr! is the magazine published by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals


Squash historians assert that the game originated in the 19th century at the Harrow


Actress Isha Koppikar was the first Bollywood personality to be

appointed judge of Miss Universe contest.

The 1963 Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership was

won by Dara N. Khurody (Aarey), Tribhuvandas K. Patel &

Verghese Kurien (Amul)

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair once had a band 'Ugly


In 1989 Dhirubhai Ambani bought the Mumbai newspaper the 'Sunday Observer' and

turned it into a broadsheet daily–'The Observer of Business and Politics'.

Bharti Airtel launched its internet protocol television (IPTV) service, becoming the

first private player to offer the service in the country. IPTV refers to delivery of television

content via a broadband connection. Apart from Airtel, state-owned MTNL and BSNL

are also offering these services.

Spanning three brands — Escort, Powertrac and Farmtrac Escorts has over 45

tractor variants from 25 to 80 HP to cater to both domestic as well as overseas markets.

'mjunction services' is one of the largest e-commerce companies promoted by Steel

Authority of India (SAIL) and Tata Steel. IBM is the hardware and software provider,

Cognizant Technology Solutions is the implementation partner. Microsoft is the advanced

independent software vendor. Buyjunction is the company's e-sourcing services and

solutions business. Mjunctionedge is the content and conference division of mjunction




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