Monday, May 3, 2010

Business trivia

Janaagraha is

a not-for-profit institution started in 2001 by Ramesh and Swati

Ramanathan. From a movement to include people's participation in

public governance it has now evolved into a robust institution for

Citizenship and Democracy.

Prior to current activities Ramesh Ramanathan pursued a career path

at Citibank. He is a contributing author of a book published on

Equity Derivatives: Applications in Risk Management and


Current activities: Sanghamithra Rural Financial Services,

Janalakshmi Financial Services, was a member of the

Bangalore Agenda Task Force.

Ramesh possesses an MSc (Hons.) degree in Physics from BITS

Pilani, an MBA from Yale University, and a Certified Financial

Analyst (CFA) degree from the Association of Investment

Management & Research (AIMR). He co-authored a book titled,

'Urban Poverty Alleviation in India', 2003

Swati Ramanathan is also the Chairperson of India's largest

urban conference, India Urban Space – that focuses on policy, infrastructure and

planning. She is a member of the State Urban Agenda for Rajasthan (SUARAJ).

In the recent past, several consumer-facing companies have roped in younger faces in

order to revamp their image.

Nakshatra has replaced Aishwarya Rai

with Katrina Kaif to endorse its diamonds

State-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd

has shown the door to Preity Zinta and

signed on Deepika Padukone

Dabur has got Mahendra Singh Dhoni for its chyawanprash in addition to ageing

legend Amitabh Bachchan.

Brands dealing in cosmetics, personal care products, jewelry and lifestyle products have

lapped up the opportunity to leverage the star power

of Kareena Kapoor given her connect with the


She was roped in by brands like ITC for its Vivel

soap, Head & Shoulders, Globus, D'damas for Geetanjali, Anne French, Emami and


Her contract with ITC, which at Rs 5 crore was thought to be the highest for her this year,

has now been topped by Pepsi, putting her in a commanding position in her peer group.



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Bharti Enterprises corporate rebranding campaign expresses its new brand identity and

the brand motto, 'Big Transformations through Brave Actions'. It peeps into the

history and highlights the achievements of Indians, such as Aryabhatta - the inventor of

the digit 0, Sushruta - the father of surgery, Jagdish Bose, - who invented wireless

communication, Vinod Dham - inventor of the Pentium computer chip, and Mahatma

Gandhi, all of whom have changed the world with their beliefs. The tune was composed

by AR Rahman.

Tata Motors is running a website,, to promote a

new version of the Indica, called Tata

Indica Vista, among young

executives. The website carries an

episodic graphic novel, which tells the

story of two virtual characters called

Andy and Leela, who meet at Indica

Vista showroom and gradually fall in

love with each other. The car brand

plays a supporting role in the story,

stepping in at key times to solve Andy

and Leela's problems.

The Royals Army membership programme of IPL club Rajasthan Royals has five fan

categories, Maharaja Club, Captain's Club, Royal Lions Club, Royal Bugles Club

and Young Royals Club, with membership fees ranging between Rs 2,500 and Rs 1.5

lakh. The benefits for the members include season tickets, autographed bats, official team

jerseys, preferential access to tickets sold online and invitations to the season ending


Dr Vikram Ambalal Sarabhai's son, Kartikeya, is now reviving the nearly-defunct

Sarabhai Chemicals Ltd and more in 2009. The marketing network is named as


Since 1992, Montblanc has been producing limited editions of writing-instrument lines,

which are dedicated to famous arts patrons, writers and musicians. With only 4,810

pieces made of each edition, they have become coveted articles for collectors worldwide.

Mumbai-based The Bombay Store which has eight outlets plans to step up its presence

in the country. The Bombay Store, which was started by Lokmanya Tilak in 1906 as part

of the Swadeshi Movement, carried the desi homespun tag till 1991 when the Mumbaibased

Dalal family took over the company. In its modern avatar, The Bombay Store

offers eco-friendly, organic products sourced from across the country.

Debenhams plc is a British-based retailer operating under a department store founded in

1778 by Messrs Flint and Clark who began trading at a London store under the name

Flint & Clark. In 1813 William Debenham was made a partner so the name was changed



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to Clark and Debenham. The business was incorporated as Debenhams Limited in


Coca-Cola through its 'Parivartan' programme has trained over 6,000 retailers to

display and stock products well in a bid to boost rural penetration.

Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), India's largest life insurance company, has

covered 58 lakh persons so far under the social security scheme Aam Admi Bima Yojna,

launched on October 2, 2007.

The Aam Admi Bima Yojna that was launched in October 2007, by the then Finance

Minister P Chidambaram at Shimla in Himachal Pradesh provides insurance to the

head of the family of rural landless household against natural death, accidental death and

partial/permanent disability

The modern Aloha shirt was devised in the early 1930s by Chinese merchant Ellery

Chun of King-Smith Clothiers and Dry Goods, a store in Hawaii. Chun began sewing

brightly colored shirts for tourists out of old kimono fabrics he had leftover in stock. The

Honolulu Advertiser newspaper was quick to coin the term Aloha shirt to describe

Chun's fashionable creation. Chun trademarked the name.

Zurich is the codename for Microsoft's Azure Services Platform consisting of

sophisticated tools to help developers manage their cloud-based services and Web apps.

Chrysler LLC has introduced Jeep Patriot electric prototype vehicles.

FHM or For Him Magazine is an international monthly Men's Lifestyle magazine

founded by Chris Astridge.

Chennai-based Eagle Press sells corporate diaries under the brands Prestige, Chairman,

Supreme and Chancellor.

Atul Auto Ltd's product line mainly includes Atul Shakti-popularly known as

'Chhakada' in Gujarati, light commercial vehicles and special purpose vehicles

Crompton's subsidiaries Pauwels and Ganz, which sell mainly in the Europe and US

PepsiCo has identified seaweeds as a key driver for exports along with its Florida

Oranges Project in Punjab.

Cello Pens and Stationery owns the brands Maxriter and Pin Point

Emami roped in actor Dharmendra as its brand ambassador for "Sona Chandi Kesar

Chyawanprash" in 2005

Emami Group runs the Real Gold Challenge for Sona Chandi Kesar Chyawanprash

in which anyone who proves that the product does not contain real gold would get one kg



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of gold from the company. The product is a formulation based on research carried out by

the Himani Ayurveda Science Foundation set up by the company.

BMW is the world's first car maker to introduce a head-up display in the new BMW 7

Series – the first in this segment – as well as Night Vision that is even able to recognize

individual persons.

Nettop is a term introduced by Intel to describe 'low-cost' desktop computers.

Examples are the fit-PC, the CherryPal, the Koolu, the Mac Mini, the ASUS Eee Box, the

Linutop, the Zonbu, and the gPC and gPC mini by Everex. Portable versions, designed for

mobile use, are sometimes known as netbooks. The Asus Eee Box and the nettop version

of the MSI Wind PC are nettops in development. Moblin project supports the device type.

The Congress party has appointed Crayons and JWT Delhi to handle the all-India

advertising mandate for the oncoming polls. The account size has been pegged at Rs 200


The name "Daihatsu" is a combination of the first kanji for

Osaka and the first of the word "engine manufacture"

(hatsudōki seizō). In 1907, Hatsudoki Seizo was founded. In

1951, it was renamed Daihatsu Motor Co.

The term mortgage comes from the Old French "dead pledge," apparently meaning that

the pledge ends (dies) either when the obligation is fulfilled or the property is taken

through foreclosure.

Energy Drink and Energy Bar brands have been launched by Amway.

New Delhi-based JHS Svendgaard Laboratories, a contract manufacturer of oral care

products for Dabur, Balsara, Ajanta and Oral-B is known for its teeth whitening gel brand


Honitus is the cough drop brand from Dabur.

Flemingo DFS is India's first duty-free shop (DFS) chain attached with major

international airports in the country.

Tata Indicom was the first mobile service provider to launch a lifetime prepaid plan.

Quark Biotechnology Inc., a gene-based drug developer focusing on cancer research, is

a company promoted by Oracle founder Larry Ellison.

In 'PEST analysis', PEST stands for political, economic, social, technological

In marketing management, semiotics stands for study of symbols & signs in consumer




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P&G's global cause credo 'Live Learn & Thrive'–to support children in need across the


The movie 'Hello' is based on the book 'One Night @ the Call Centre' by Chetan


Netbook is a light-weight, low-cost, energy-efficient,

highly portable laptop that achieves these parameters by

offering fewer features, less processing power and reduced

ability to run resource-intensive operating systems (e.g.,

Windows Vista). The original product, the Psion Netbook,

was abandoned before items such as the Asus EeePC hit

shelves and the term subsequently came in to use as a

generic name for the market segment. By April 2008, Intel

had begun officially using the term netbook to recognize a

specific sub-category of laptops.

Psion in 1999 had used the product name 'netbook', and in

2008 claimed trademark rights to the term where used in a

product name.

Oracle's Promise program–the company has committed $100 million to provide

network computer access to 'every child in America'

In 1957, Sheth Haridas Mundra induced LIC to invest in the shares of six companies he

controlled, bypassing the normal channels, and charging higher-than-market prices. In

1958, Feroze Gandhi, who tracked the insurance sector, highlighted the case. The fallout

from the Mundra scandal included the indictment of the then-finance secretary and the

resignation of Finance Minister T T Krishnamachari. Feroze Gandhi had earlier been

the whistle-blower in the R K Dalmia case, which led to the nationalisation of the

insurance industry. Dalmia had an insurance company from which he siphoned off cash.

Ramalinga Raju's 2009 travel calendar had "Davos" marked on it. He was scheduled to

give a lecture on "Financial Innovation" there in February 2009. The WEF (World

Economic Forum) later decided to cancel that presentation.

Jessica Stam (born 1986), also known simply as Stam, is a Canadian model. Fashion

designer Marc Jacobs created The Marc Jacobs Stam, a bag inspired by and named

after her.

The Indian Film Company (IFC) was listed on the

Alternative Investment Market (AIM) Exchange in the UK in

June 2007. It was set up to make investments in both Indian

films and films targeted at Indian audiences. Raghav Bahl, controlling shareholder in

Network 18, is IFC's largest shareholder. It has released hugely successful films such as

'Jab We Met', 'Welcome', 'Singh is Kinng', 'Golmaal Returns' and 'Ghajini' in the

last one and a half years



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Cartridge World was originally called Australian Cartridge Co and was started by

Bryan Stokes in 1991.

Antonio Stradivari (1644-1737), Italian violin maker, born in Cremona; he also made

violas and cellos. The Latin form of his name is Stradivarius.

Rolls-Royce was nationalised in 1971, a bail-out which worked better in the long run

than the British Leyland deal. The company had run into difficulties due to cost-overruns

in the development of its RB211 engine. It spun off its carmaking division in 1973, but

the rest of the company remained in government control until 1987, when it was

privatised. Rolls-Royce is now a successful company, but many people argue that it spent

too long in government hands.


Martin Lindstrom, PANIC!–Michael Lewis, CRASH PROOF–Peter D. Schiff with John

Downes, THE BRAND BUBBLE–John Gerzema, Ed Lebar, TRIBES–Seth Godin,


Covey & WHAT COLOR IS YOUR PARACHUTE?–Richard Nelson Bolles

David Ogilvy left Oxford at 20 in 1931 in the midst of the Great Depression, taking a

position in the kitchen at Paris' Hotel Majestic whose head chef was Monsieur Pitard. It

was the first in a motley series of occupations: By 1948, when he started his fledgling

New York agency, Ogilvy had been an advertising trainee, a door-to-door salesman for

Aga stoves, a researcher for George Gallup of Americans' opinions about movie stars,

an Amish-country farm owner, and, during World War II, a spy for British military

intelligence. Pitard's management style became Ogilvy's model for hard work, discipline,

and excellence.

MasterCard SpendingPulse™ is a macroeconomic indicator that reports on consumer

spending in a variety of categories—from gasoline to apparel

Vishal Retail has started the 3H concept of 'Health, Hygiene and Hunger' wherein the

retailer provides healthy food to consumers in our shop-in-shop model outlets.

Unilever unveiled the "All Small-and-Mighty," a product that is concentrated by three

times and contains enough detergent for the same 32 loads of laundry as a 100-ounce

bottle. Less water means less packaging. Smaller packages mean the company can ship

more product for less. And it also takes up less shelf space. Wal-Mart says this move

saved more than 400 million gallons of water, 95 million pounds of plastic resin, and

more than 125 million pounds of cardboard in the U.S. over the past three years.

Japan Steel Works is the only maker of ultra heavy forgings for nuclear reactor

vessels. In France, a subsidiary of AREVA is developing this capability, as are Doosan

Heavy Industries in Korea and Mitsubishi Steel in Japan.



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The Rs 250-crore Indage Vintners is India's largest wine producing company, with

brands such as Rivera, Marquis de Pompodiour and Vino under its umbrella.

ENERGY STAR is a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and

the U.S. Department of Energy helping us all save money and protect the environment

through energy efficient products and practices.

World's first commercially grown genetically modified whole

food crop was the tomato (called Flavr Savr), which was made

more resistant to rotting by Californian company Calgene.

Brother began as the Yasui Sewing Machine Co. in 1908 in

Nagoya, Japan. It entered the computer printer market during its association with


Swiss chocolate brand Toblerone was founded by Theodor

Toblerone and Emil Baumann in Bern, Switzerland in 1908. The logo

is the image of Matterhorn mountain symbolizing the town of its


The brand Godiva is named after an Anglo-Saxon noblewoman who,

according to legend, rode naked through the streets of Coventry in England in order to

gain a remission of the oppressive taxation imposed by her husband on his tenants.

Baby Einstein is a line of multimedia products and toys marketed by the Walt Disney

Company under the slogan, "Where Discovery Begins".

The Baby Einstein Company was founded in 1997 by

Julie Aigner-Clark at her home in Georgia. Aigner-Clark

and her husband, Bill Clark produced a VHS/DVD video

called Baby Einstein, later sold as Language Nursery. The

video shows a variety of toys and visuals interspersed with

music, stories, numbers, and words of many languages.

William Penn brand gets its name from a person after whom a US state is named. This

name was chosen because of phonetic similarities between the person's surname and the

product being sold

Parker brand was named after its founder, who received a patent in 1894 on what he

called the 'lucky curve' feed, which enabled withdrawal of excess ink back into the pen

body when the pen was not in use.

Google commissioned a comic book by Scott McCloud at the launch of its web browser




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Paris based Société pour la Gestion de l'Entreprise et le Traitement de l'Information

(Sogeti) is now known as Capgemini.

Tintin first appeared in the children's supplement of Brussels' rightwing

newspaper Vingtieme Siecle on 10 January 1929. Copyrights

to his creator Herge's (real name Georges Remi, 1907-1983) estate

are owned by Moulinsart.

Scholastic Corporation, world's largest publisher and distributor of

children's books, was founded in 1920 by M.R. "Robbie"


The Exxon corporate logo uses a modified version of the Cross of Lorraine.

Silicon Wadi (Silicon Valley in Hebrew) is an area with a high concentration of hightech

industries in Israel, similar to Silicon Valley in California, in the United States.

Chupa Chups is a Catalan lollipop company founded by Barcelona

native Enric Bernat in 1958, and currently owned by the Dutch-Italian

multinational corporation Perfetti Van Melle. The Chupa Chups lollypop

logo was designed by the master of surrealist painting Salvador

Dali back in 1969.

A dragée (from Greek tragêmata 'sweets, treats') is a form of

confectionery that can be used for decorative or symbolic purposes in

addition to consumption.

Juan Valdez

Juan Valdez is a fictional character that has appeared in

advertisements for the National Federation of Coffee

Growers of Colombia since 1959, representing the

Colombian coffee farmer. He typically appears alongside

his mule Conchita, carrying sacks of harvested coffee

beans. He has become an icon for Colombia as well as

coffee in general.

The advertisements were designed by the Doyle Dane

Bernbach ad agency, with the goal of distinguishing 100%

Colombian coffee from coffee blended with beans from other countries.

Carlos Castañeda, a grower from the town of Andes was selected by the National

Federation of Coffee Growers of Colombia as the new face of Juan Valdez in 2006.

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