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									              BUSINESS & TECHNOLOGY
              ASIA-PACIFIC




                                               REPORT




              RETURN
              OF THE

              KING
                                                   INDIAN PRIME MINISTER
                                                  MANMOHAN
                                                      SINGH




        A Korean IT Pioneer               Doing it Cognizant Way
                              3G-WiMax
                                Poised
                               to Boost
                               Telecom
                                Growth
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               Contents                                            June 2009 / Vol. 1, No. 1 | www.biztechreport.com



                                                    politics                           30 3g-Wimax poised to
                                                    12 return of the King              Boost telecom growth
                                                                                           Golden opportunity for India’s
                                                       Prime Minister Manmohan Singh   telecom operators

                                                    15 the great Korean                Interview
                                                    peninsula Chess match
                                                       North Korea’s nuclear arsenal   34 Information
                                                                                       technology is source
                                                    17 the rahul factor                of Wealth for Korea
                                                       Congress General Secretary         Dr. Oh Myung, president of
                                                    Rahul Gandhi                       Konkuk University

                                                    Business                 36 re-architecting
                                                    20 employee motivation Client Business models
                                                    – the power is in there! in a Cognizant Way
                                                       Building a positive work           R. Chandrasekaran, president
                                                    environment                        and managing director, Cognizant


                                                    It                              39 n.K. goyal, CmaI
                                                                                        President of the Communica-
                                                    22 Bright days ahead:           tions and Manufacturing Association


               business & technology
               asia-pacific
                                                                                    of India
                                                    Indian It Industry to get
                                           report   a Boost                         tourism
                                                       India’s economic recovery
               Publisher: Groove Korea
                                                                                    40 Visit Korea
               Chief Consultant:                    25 Information                  Incheon 2009
               Dr. Lakhvinder Singh                 technology trends                   The country’s first city of mod-
               Indo-Korean Business and                                             ern civilization
               Poilcy Forum                         in asia
               To contact Asia Pacific Busi-
                                                       Singapore stands out         travel
               ness and technology Report           28 helping                      42 old Kunming
               for advertising, submissions or
               general comments please email to
                                                    semiconductor firms                 Southwestern China’s largest city

               contact@biztechreport.com            achieve high                    Last Word
               Issue date: June 1O, 2009            performance by
                                                    simplifying Business            46 the death of phone
                                                       Companies need to make rapid manners
                                                    and fundamental changes                Lack of social etiquette




AP-1.indd 11                                                                                                           6/5/09 10:57:10 AM
        12       politics




        the return of the King
        NADeeM AKhTAR                              hanced by his reputation for personal       tation devoid of the kind of emotional




        I
                                                   integrity, and from the energetic cam-      content, which its principal opponent,
                                                   paigning of Congress President Sonia        the BJP, customarily exploits on such
               ndian National Con-                 and General Secretary Rahul Gandhi.         occasions. As a result, the normality of
               gress. A name that is               even if the party was taunted for its       the contest meant that the BJP could
               on the tip of every-                dependence on the dynasty, it did not       not whip up what it likes to term as
                                                   seem to bother the average voter, as        “nationalistic sentiment” in its favor.
               one’s tongue today                  earlier experience has shown.               It did try various pseudo-religious,
               in India. The elec-                     The average voter was also appar-       pro-hindu tacks, such as promising
               tions for the 15th Lok              ently not bothered by the withdrawal        to build the Ram temple or saving the
                                                   of a longstanding Interpol notice at        Ram sethu. But clearly, none of these
        Sabha, the lower house of                  the behest of the Central Bureau of         worked for the BJP. The major reason
        the Indian Parliament, has                 Investigation (CBI) against Italian busi-   behind it is because the voters had re-
        been altogether captured by                nessman, Ottavio Quattrocchi, who is        alized that these were no more than
                                                   an accused in the Bofors scam. Or by        cynical electoral ploys.
        this 125–year-old-party. It is             the Congress’s reluctance to recover             Apart from the hate politics of the
        crystal clear now that Prime               the dirty money stashed abroad, as al-      opposition, some outstanding works
        Minister Manmohan Singh                    leged by the BJP.                           of the UPA government made way for
                                                       The BJP’s meal was soured by a de-      a ruling alliance to sit comfortably in
        will head the newly elected                cision of projected Chief Minister of       the treasury bench. One such effort
        government led by congress                 Gujarat Mr. Narendra Modi as a theme        was implementing the National Rural
        (206).                                     leader of the party. The evil deed re-      employment Guarantee Act through-
                                                   sulted in an apology from the party af-     out the country, which benefited
             The big question that is arising      ter the defeat. After the declaration of    many workers living below the pov-
        here is how the absolute-right BJP was     results, BJP leader Chandan Mitra said      erty line. This act assures 90 days of
        defeated despite all the predictions of    that projecting Modi as the party’s         employment and/or minimum wage
        a hung house and how has the ruling        next prime ministerial candidate was        payment even without work. This suc-
        United Progressive Alliance managed        a mistake, indicating that it could be      cess also includes the pro-people eco-
        to grab the majority?                      a factor in the party’s poor showing        nomic policies of one of the world’s
             Well, the answer is not so tough.     in the elections. “Bringing up Naren-       best economists, Manmohan Singh,
        It’s very pathetic to say that the op-     dra Modi’s name in the middle of the        which prevented the country from
        position National Democratic Alliance      campaign was a serious error of judg-       searing in the absolute heat of the
        failed to persecute the ruling coalition   ment,” Mitra said, analyzing the elec-      global recession. even as it fights back
        through its firebrand young bloods         tion results on a television channel.       against criticism on the fiscal front,
        such as Varun Gandhi, who made ad-             Not only Mitra, but the allies of the   the UPA says that its record in eco-
        verse statements about minorities          BJP are saying that the projection of       nomic development has been strong,
        during his election campaign in Pil-       Modi and Varun led the coalition down.      arguing that flagship schemes like the
        ibheet, a parliamentary constituency       NDA’s convener Sharad Yadav said, “It       Nuclear Power Program, the National
        of the largest state in the country, Ut-   may be right or wrong or he [Varun]         Rural employment Guarantee scheme
        tar Pradesh. During the election cam-      might have denied it, but his state-        and Bharat Nirman, have helped bring
        paign, even the BJP didn’t condemn         ment has caused immense damage.             economic growth to the masses. One
        the statements of Varun. This suicidal     his statement was unconstitutional.         cannot abruptly deny these claims of
        stand helped the party gain cheap pop-     It was against the country’s unity and      the ruling alliance.
        ularity among some of its strongholds,     must have affected the polls.” When              Now, with the success of the UPA,
        but it failed to convert that into total   asked whether references that Gujarat       particularly Congress, a big political
        popular votes throughout the country.      Chief Minister Narendra Modi could be       question arises about the future of
        It wasn’t just leaders like Varun who      a future prime ministerial candidate        the BJP and some regional parties. The
        tried to achieve their target through      had affected the prospects of NDA, Ya-      BJP has done less well than expected.
        nasty sloganeering, but also some          dav, who is also JD(U) president, said      The party has 120 seats, down 18 from
        statements by the opposition leader        the eruption of the issue indeed had        what it had in 2004. The Left party has
        and PM-in-waiting (still), Mr. L.K. Ad-    confused the people. “It was a factor.      suffered the most significant reversal
        vani. Yet, when the prime minister hit     When the issue had come up, it cre-         in the polls. The CPI(M) of West Ben-
        back with a stinging riposte to say that   ated confusion in the peoples’ minds.       gal and Kerala have presumably lost
        the BJP leader’s main achievement was      Since the NDA had already declared a        their case against capitalism in gener-
        the demolition of the Babri masjid,        prime ministerial candidate [L.K. Ad-       al and against Prime Minister Singh’s
        Advani had to concede on television        vani] unanimously, the issue should         “nuclear deal” with the United States
        that he had been “hurt.”                   have been dismissed immediately.”           in particular. Indirectly, this indicates
             On the other hand, Congress gained        hence, it is well indicated that the    that the electorate supports a strategic
        from the image of sobriety projected       success of the Congress is attributed to    partnership between India and Amer-
        by Manmohan Singh, which was en-           the fact that it was a political confron-   ica.




AP-1.indd 12                                                                                                                               6/5/09 10:57:11 AM
                               prime Minister Manmohan singh presents a bouquet of flowers to upA chairperson sonia gandhi
                                             while addressing the media at the latter’s residence in new Delhi.



                   The BJP is now in a dilemma of
               leadership. After the defeat, L.K. Ad-
               vani has expressed his desire to quit       there are some possible consequences of a Con-
               as the leader of the opposition. The
               trouble is with the BJP is that, after
                                                           gress-led alliance victory. firstly, the upa will now
               Advani, there is a crisis of leadership.    be fully independent, which will allow it to call the
               Sangh Parivar (RSS) is also reluctant,
               and with a suppressed tongue the            shots in coalition-building rather than being depen-
               opposition is seeking Advani’s retire-
               ment. In such a situation, an easily-       dent on the goodwill of a host of regional parties.
               acceptable leader will not be easy to
               choose, because the party is already
                                                           no doubt about the stable government of a coali-
               in disarray. Therefore, there’s a huge
               challenge ahead for the BJP to stabi-
                                                           tion that will last another full five-year term.
               lize itself in the coming years and to
               deliver a leader with an acceptable
               face. Not like Modi or Varun, who           gaining just two. She was supposed to             Mayawati had expected to make a
               have cast a cloud over the party.           win as many as 50 seats and become            major impact on the 2009 Lok Sabha
                   Not only the Left and BJP, but          the wild card set to chisel Congress’         elections. So much so, it projected the
               the BSP and regional parties have           support and finally force it to take the      polls as one that would pave the way
               to review their place in a country of       UP-dominant party-without-an-agenda           for the rise of the first Dalit Prime
               1.3 billion people. Unexpectedly, the       into its coalition. It’s an old tradition     Minister in the country. The party
               Dalit charisma of Kumari Mayawati           to introduce election manifesto by the        presented itself as a political ally of
               of the Bahujan Samaj Party in the UP        political parties in India, but the BSP       the Left-led Third Front, though it did
               has not made inroads into the Con-          is against this tradition. It contested       not have seat adjustments with any
               gress vote. her party has won 21 seats,     the election without any manifesto.           of the Third Front constituents. It




AP-1.indd 13                                                                                                                             6/5/09 10:57:17 AM
        also tried to strengthen its fortunes,
        particularly with the Muslim mi-
        norities, by taking an aggressive line
        against Varun Gandhi’s anti-Muslim
        speech and invoking NSA against the
        BJP’s Gandhi. It continued to make
        the projection about the need for
        a Dalit Prime Minister, too, in the
        course of the campaign and asserted
        that it would be done as part of a
        non-Congress, non-BJP combination.
        It also tried to spread far and wide
        by contesting as many as 488 seats
        across the country. But as the results
        conclusively proved, all this failed to
        enthuse the masses.
            There are some possible conse-
        quences of a Congress-led alliance
        victory. Firstly, the UPA will now be
        fully independent, which will allow it
                                                               in congress, singh and gandhi meet after the election results.
        to call the shots in coalition-building
        rather than being dependent on the
        goodwill of a host of regional parties.
        No doubt about the stable govern-         could be in the cards. This could lead       pay heed to the international efforts
        ment of a coalition that will last an-    to higher market borrowings, which           to normalize relations with Pakistan
        other full five-year term.                may further push the fiscal deficit be-      – to begin with, lessen the Indian
            The election result is also a set-    yond the present consolidated deficit        military presence on the border. Pak-
        back for regional, caste-based parties    of around 10 percent.                        istan may find itself challenged by
        and the communists who were once              After emerging as a “strong poli-        Mr. Singh’s insistence that Pakistan
        seen as indispensable to any coalition    tician,” Mr. Singh will definitely get       punish the Mumbai attack culprits.
        formation. The result may force the       special attention from America and           By insisting less on the maxim of
        main hindu-nationalist opposition         neighboring countries alike. Noting          “South Asia for South Asians,” India
        Bharatiya Janata Party to search for      that India and the U.S. have com-            has gained special leverage in deal-
        a new leader to replace the 81-year-      mon interests in many issues like            ing with Pakistan, whose economic
                                                                                               survival now depends totally on the
                                                                                               U.S. and its allies. Letting the Ameri-
                                                                                               cans become arbiters in the “Afghan-
        after emerging as a “strong politician,” mr. singh                                     Pak crisis” has taken India out of iso-
                                                                                               lation as it deals with its neighbors.
        will definitely get special attention from america                                     Pakistan will be under pressure to
        and neighboring countries alike.                                                       proceed against the Taliban, who it
                                                                                               has acknowledged as being located
                                                                                               on its soil, even though its courts
                                                                                               feel inclined to let them off. India
                                                                                               will probably be willing to sign trade
        old Lal Krishna Advani. Unfettered        combating terrorism and putting the          deals, but anything that Pakistan
        by an absence of difficult allies, the    global economy back on track, the            wants from India will be put on the
        Congress could push for further lib-      Obama administration is set to seek          back burner until Pakistan delivers
        eralization of the insurance, pension     an expanded strategic partnership            on the jihadists in addition to the
        and banking sectors, moves that were      with New Delhi. Interest has been            Taliban.
        blocked by its former communist al-       expressed by Ambassador Robert O.                Along these steps, it is expected
        lies. It could also look at stake sales   Blake, who was nominated by Obama            the newly-mandated PM will build
        in or the listing of some state-run       as the Assistant Secretary of State          on ties with the U.S. and fully imple-
        firms to raise resources to fund its      for South and Central Asia. “If con-         ment the nuclear deal it signed with
        development programs. It could also       firmed, a top priority for me and for        Washington in 2008. The government
        use innovative financial tools as well    the Bureau of South and Central Asia         will push for more say in global eco-
        as some rate cuts from the central        will be to seek an expanded strategic        nomic and political policy-making in
        bank. The government could also           partnership with India,” Blake said in       entities such as the United Nations
        now forcefully ask commercial banks       his confirmation hearing before the          Security Council, World Bank and the
        to cut lending rates in order for mon-    Senate Foreign Relations Committee.          International Monetary Fund.
        etary policy to make an impact. A re-     Now it is considered that India, with            Aloof about the expectations of
        newed focus on the agriculture sector     its vibrant democracy and rapidly ex-        political pundits, the new govern-
        after the rural vote proved decisive      panding economy, can be an anchor            ment must fulfill the basic needs of
        for the Congress’ strong electoral        of stability and opportunity for South       the trailing society, which is most in
        performance. The government could         and Central Asia and will be more ef-        need at present. execution is begin-
        build on the success of a NReGS(A)        fective in combating terrorism in the        ning to matter in politics. It is only
        and expand its scope to cover the         region.                                      honesty from the leadership that
        entire country. higher subsidies for           A leading newspaper of Pakistan,        leads to a value-based victory at the
        the poor, including cheaper staples,      The Daily Times, sees a perspective          UPA’s end, and it must deliver in or-
        cheaper farm loans, crop insurance        of hope stating that while post-elec-        der to stay alive.
        and wider health insurance coverage       tion India will be in a better mood to                          (With input from agencies.)




AP-1.indd 14                                                                                                                                    6/5/09 10:57:18 AM
                                                                                                                            politics       15

               the great Korean
               peninsula Chess match
               BY DONALD KIRK                                               Analyses,                 eral days after the firing of the Tae-




               I
                                                                            dismisses                 podong-2. The session unanimously
                                                                            the view                  roared its approval of another term
                       n the great bargain-                                  t h a t                  for Kim as chairman of the national
                       ing game for the                                      North                    defense commission, the center of
                       relaxation of ten-                                    K o -                    power in North Korea, and named
                                                                            rea’s                     his brother-in-law, Jang Song-taek, a
                       sions on the Korean                              response                      commission member. Jang is Kim’s
                       Peninsula, for free-                     to the UN condemna-                   right-hand man – and likely regent
                       dom from the fear                      tion “constitutes a rhetorical          behind Kim’s successor. The young-
                                                             threat only.” North Korea now            est of Kim’s three sons, Kim Jong-un,
               of North Korea’s nuclear                      “wants to demonstrate that it’s          given a defense post as “inspector,” is
               arsenal, the decibel level of                                                          believed to be in line as the first third-
               the rhetoric grows louder by                               Kim Jong-il                 generation family member to inherit
                                                                                                      the top post of any communist coun-
               the day. Three factors form
                                                                                                      try.
               separate but related ele-                                                                   In the midst of the backstage ma-
               ments in a great drama with                 completing its nuclear system,” he         neuvering for succession, North Ko-
                                                           told me. “They must improve the de-        rea also is weighing the U.S. response
               far-reaching repercussions                  vice and the delivery system” – that is,   to the drama of rhetoric and testing.
               for the region. Not necessar-               the nuclear warhead and the means          North Korea is clearly not interested
               ily in order of importance,                 to fire it to distant targets.             in going on with six-party talks, last
                                                               North Korean scientists and engi-      held in December, while the State De-
               these range from succession                 neers by most estimates have fabricat-     partment routinely calls for return-
               in North Korea, U.S. policy                 ed at least six nuclear warheads, but      ing to the table. First, in the view of
               on Korea and the North Ko-                  probably not a small enough device         Choi Jin-wook, senior research fellow
                                                           to affix to the tip of a long-range mis-   at the Korea Institute of National Uni-
               rean intimidation of South                  sile, such as the one that flew 2,000
                                                                                                      fication, North Korea wants the UN
               Korea’s conservative gov-                   miles in the early April test. North Ko-
                                                                                                      Security Council to cancel sanctions
               ernment. None of these are                  rea has so far conducted two under-
                                                                                                      imposed by a resolution adopted after
                                                           ground nuclear tests, but both tests
               evolving in ways likely to re-              were far smaller than those of the
                                                                                                      the 2006 nuclear test. The resolution
                                                                                                      appeared ineffective as long as sanc-
               lieve tensions.                             eight full-fledged nuclear powers – an
                                                                                                      tions were not enforced, but China,
                                                           elite group among which the North
                    North Korea is elevating the nu-                                                  Russia and others now appear more
                                                           would like recognition as a member.
               clear threat level to new extremes,                                                    inclined to observe them. Meanwhile,
                                                           The timing of North Korea’s test is
               while American policy appears uncer-                                                   said Choi, “No international bank will
                                                           directly related to the North’s succes-
               tain to Korean observers. That’s the                                                   make transactions” with North Korea
                                                           sion crisis and evolving U.S. policy.
               impression one gets from the North’s        North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-il, “is     while the sanctions are in place. “The
               demand that the United Nations Se-          not in the greatest of health and the      U.S. wants to pressure North Korea,”
               curity Council issue “an apology” for       succession issue is unresolved,” ob-       he believes. “They are playing a game
               having condemned its test-firing of         served Dean Ouellette, a research fel-     of bluffing each other.”
               a long-range Taepodong-2 missile on         low at the University of North Korean           It is a dangerous game, however,
               April 5 and its subsequent nuclear          Studies in Seoul. With the missile-        in which North Korea is expected to
               test on May 25. If the Security Coun-       firing and subsequent nuclear test, he     continue to make good on its threats.
               cil fails to do its bidding, North Korea    believes, North Korea is keeping the       “It’s easy to predict they will do what
               threatens to “defend its supreme in-        world on edge while working through        they’ve said,” said Yoon Dae-kyu, vice
               terests” with “measures that will in-       problems at home.                          president of Kyungnam University,
               clude nuclear tests and test-firings of         The process of selecting a suc-        but first North Korea wants to see the
               intercontinental ballistic missiles.”       cessor to Kim Jong-il became a top         drift of U.S. policy under President
                    The question is, how long is the       priority last August after he suffered     Barack Obama. The U.S. special envoy
               North prepared to wait to see if the        a stroke that weakened his left side.      on North Korea, Stephen Bosworth,
               United States shows signs of yielding       Kim, who also suffers from diabetes,       is believed to advocate dialogue be-
               to direct dialogue outside the format       looked frail and appeared to have lost     tween the U.S. and North Korea, long
               of six-party talks. Paik Sung-joo, direc-   weight when he chaired a session of        sought by the North in what is viewed
               tor of the Center for Strategy and Secu-    the Supreme People’s Assembly sev-         in Seoul as an attempt to sideline and
               rity at the Korean Institute for Defense                                               isolate the South.




AP-1.indd 15                                                                                                                             6/5/09 10:57:19 AM
            One consideration will be                                                                      The certainty of military
        the degree to which the U.S.                                                                  assumption of real power rests
        chooses to fight the spread of                                                                on the military-first policy that
        nuclear weapons and technol-                                                                  Kim Jong Il has promoted ever
        ogy under the Proliferation                                                                   since he inherited national
        Security Initiative, a program                                                                leadership after the death of
        for banding scores of nations                                                                 his long-reigning father, Kim
        together to cooperate on block-                                                               Il-sung, in July 1994. Although
        ing shipments of nuclear ma-                                                                  elevated to the National De-
        teriel. South Korean officials                                                                fense Commission after the
        have said the South has made                                                       seoul      latest missile test, brother-in-
        a “firm and clear” decision to                                                                law Jang will have to contend
        join the PSI as a core member                                                                 with military people whose
        after having participated under                                                               command of the country’s 1.1
        an observer status in exercises,                                                              million troops gives them an
        but North Korea has said such a           ited Seoul in February on the way to                automatic power base. Third
        move by the South would be “a decla-      Beijing, host of the six-party talks, she son Kim Jong-un, moreover, may be
        ration of war.” If nothing else, North    spoke of the need to consider the fu- a weak leader – even if his father ad-
        Korea could respond to the South’s        ture of North Korea when Kim Jong- judged him better qualified than his
        joining the PSI by staging attacks on     il was no longer around. Diplomatic two older brothers. educated in Swit-
        South Korean patrol boats in the West     analysts chastised her for speaking so zerland, he has never had to endure
        or Yellow Sea similar to those in June    frankly about the fitness of the leader the hardships of the military people
        1999 and June 2002. Six South Korean      of a regime the U.S. hoped would re- around him. Moreover, like his ail-
        sailors were killed in the second at-     turn to negotiations. More recently, ing father, he’s somewhat overweight
        tack while scores of North Koreans        Clinton has said the North Koreans and may be suffering from diabetes –
        were believed to have died on each        can forget about economic aid unless a condition that does not augur well
        occasion.                                 they return to the six-party talks that for his long-term future as the first
            At the Korea Institute for Defense    they have vowed “never” again to at- third-generation leader of any social-
        Analyses, Kim Tae-woo, the vice presi-    tend. She estimated the chances of ist country.
        dent, believes North Korea is looking     the North Koreans biting on that bait           In the rivalry to show who’s
        for any pretext to conduct more tests     as “implausible if not impossible,” as toughest, North Korean strategists
        and would rather do so sooner than        were the odds they would “begin to view South Korea as an irritant to be
        later. By demanding an “apology” from     disable their nuclear capacity.” Such intimidated by threats and warnings.
        the UN Security Council, Kim told me,     tough talk was more reminiscent of They are “investigating” the hyun-
        “they are asking something not ac-        the early years of the presidency of dai engineer arrested on March 30
        ceptable” while “trying to accumulate     George W. Bush than of that of her hus- for bad-mouthing North Korea in a
        legitimacy for the next nuclear test.”    band Bill Clinton, whose secretary of drunken conversation with a North
        Preparations for testing a warhead,       state, Madeleine Albright, schmoozed Korean waitress at the Kaesong Indus-
                                                                                              trial Complex just above the Demilita-
                                                                                              rized Zone about 60 kilometers north
                                                                                              of Seoul. In response to South Korean
        south Korean officials have said the south has made                                   demands to see him, they are telling
                                                                                              South Korean officials to stop making
        a “firm and clear” decision to join the psI as a core                                 a fuss or face reprisals. In effect, they
        member after having participated under an observer                                    are holding the engineer for ransom,
                                                                                              demanding more money from the 100
        status in exercises, but north Korea has said such a                                  South Korean companies whose man-
                                                                                              agers and technicians supervise about
        move by the south would be “a declaration of war.”                                    40,000 North Korean workers produc-
                                                                                              ing light industrial products inside
                                                                                              the zone. Simultaneously, the North
                                                                                              Koreans are warning South Korea to
        Kim Tae-woo believes, “will not take      with Kim Jong-il in Pyongyang in Oc- stop investigating activist groups, an
        much time” since North Korea has          tober 2000, three months before Bush implicit call for southern compatri-
        started reprocessing spent fuel rods      took over from Bill.                        ots to stage protests and incidents de-
        at its nuclear complex at Yongbyon.           At the crux of the North Korean signed to weaken the government of
        “They could do it in two months,” he      strategy is the desire to soften U.S. President Lee Myung Bak.
        said. “They are waiting for the U.S.      policy, as happened during Bush’s sec-          It was in that spirit that North Ko-
        position as well as dialogue. The U.S.    ond term when North Korea agreed rea called on the UN Security Council
        has not yet set its North Korean poli-    at the six-party talks to an elaborate to apologize. What would it take for
        cy.” At the same time, North Korea in     scheme to disable its nuclear complex the Security Council to decide that re-
        the next month or two may stage an        in return for a massive aid package. traction of its condemnation of North
        armed confrontation in the West or        Now Kim Jong-il, prodded by his gen- Korea’s test-firing of the missile and
        Yellow Sea, as happened in the bloody     erals, is betting the U.S. will assent to its subsequent nuclear test would not
        shootouts in 1999 and 2002. Or North      two-way talks in which the North will be a bad idea? Could those countries
        Korea could go one better and stage an    press for all the billions promised in within range of North Korea’s missiles
        incident along the demilitarized zone     the 1994 Geneva agreement and then be certain of their immunity? The an-
        between the two Koreas.                   in the six-party deals of 2007. The gen- swer to such questions is sadly no. The
             The ultimate challenge, though,      erals will be vying for control behind demand for an “apology” was noise in
        is against the United States. When        the cover of the close relatives at the a chorus of rhetoric likely to end in
        Secretary of State hillary Clinton vis-   apex of the structure.                      more explosions.




AP-1.indd 16                                                                                                                              6/5/09 10:57:19 AM
                                                                                                             politics     17

               the rahul factor
               BY NADeeM AKhTAR                                        the results made the party stronger in the politically
                                                                       most important state of the country. In UP there are




               e
                                                                       80 parliamentary seats, out of which Congress has 21.
                                                                       In 2004, congress did not even manage to reach a two
                            nergetic, popular, charismat-              digit number.
                            ic, hard working… whatever                     But when the actual results proved everyone wrong,
                            positive adjective you prefer,             voices began rising in favor of Rahul to be the next PM.
                                                                       Many top Congress party leaders will have to grudg-
                            just put it before his name.
                            he is the one who has taken
                            the challenge to feed the en-
               thusiasm of the Party workers. he is the
               one who managed to come out with a
               mission in a state (Uttar Pradesh) where
               caste and creed politics ruled over politi-
               cal agendas. he is the one who addressed
               election rallies in 26 states in 37 days. he
               is the one who covered 105,118 kilome-
               ters all over the country during the elec-
               tion campaign. he is the one who man-
               aged to recover the lost ground in a state
               where his party was far behind any other.
               And finally, he is the one who proved
               himself to be the real heir of the Gandhi
               dynasty. Of course, he is none other
               than Rahul. The 39-year-old young
               chap behind the success saga of the
               Indian National Congress in the 15th
               Lok Sabha elections.
                   Today, Rahul is at a milestone in Indian poli-
               tics. One can easily assess him from his contri-
               butions; Rahul campaigned in 120 constituencies
               across the country for Congress nominees and the
               party won in 75 of them (a 62 percent success rate).
               Before the election results a survey was conducted
               for the Congress party, which has also not expected
               such a victory. With his strategic leadership, Rahul
               has proven himself to be mature enough to success-
               fully deal with any treasury task. There is no doubt
               that the architect of the UPA’s victory is Rahul Gan-
               dhi and he deserves to be a cabinet member now,
               but the million dollar question here is whether or
               not Rahul is interested in the politics of power.
                   Flashback: When there was a failure of a seat-
               sharing agreement between the Samajwadi party
               and Congress in Uttar Pradesh, Rahul decided to
               fight alone. At the beginning, voices were heard
               against this move within the party and speculations
               were high for a big failure of congress in UP. It was
               treated as a mistake and a sect of party was ready to
               pay a big price of these decisions in the state. But




AP-1.indd 17                                                                                                             6/5/09 10:57:20 AM
               congress general secretary Rahul gandhi with Dongaria Kondh tribes at niyamgiri hills in orissa during his Discovery of india Journey.




        ingly or willingly make way for Ra-          scripted this famous victory for              Manmohan promptly offered a slot
        hul. Some young MPs, after election          the Congress and for the United               for Rahul in his Cabinet and praised
        victories, rushed to the TV cameras          Progressive Alliance. Rahul, mean-            Rahul for having “all the qualities
        and vociferously opined that Rahul           while, kept a studied silence after           a good PM should have,” but Rahul
        should be the Prime Minister. Jyoti-         the triumph. But his mother and               refused politely, saying that he will
        raditya Scindia, Milind Deora and            Congress party president Sonia si-            continue to work for the party orga-
        Sachin Pilot were prominent young            lenced the ‘Rahul as PM’ sloganeer-           nization and is not yet keen to join
        MPs, while senior leader Kapil Sib-          ing brigade by giving Manmohan                the Union government.
        bal had no doubt either about who            a second term as Prime Minister.                  This is not the first time Rahul
                                                                                                   has refused to join the government,
                                                                                                   but there are several occurrences
                                                                                                   when he thanked the requesters
        today, rahul is at a milestone in Indian politics.                                         while heartily stating ‘NO.’ In Janu-
        one can easily assess him from his contributions;                                          ary 2006, at a convention of the
                                                                                                   Indian National Congress in hyder-
        rahul campaigned in 120 constituencies across                                              bad, Andhra Pradesh, thousands of
                                                                                                   party members asked Rahul to take
        the country for Congress nominees and the party                                            a more prominent leadership role
                                                                                                   in the party and demanded that
        won in 75 of them (a 62 percent success rate).                                             he address the delegates. he said,
                                                                                                   “I appreciate it and I am grateful
                                                                                                   for your feelings and support. I as-
                                                                                                   sure you I will not let you down,”




AP-1.indd 18                                                                                                                                            6/5/09 10:57:21 AM
               as the nation remembers his father on the 18th anniversary of his death, In-
               dian political analysts are observing the future of India in rahul. since he has
               a template for future politics, which are clearly reflected in his words, he has
               been observed as a potential pm of the country. for example, after winning
               elections rahul does not scold the opposition for its lower level speeches dur-
               ing campaigning, rather he praised the leader of the opposition, L.K. advani,
               for fighting bravely in a tough election. this shows the humbleness he inher-
               ited from his father.


               but asked for patience and declined       also flaunted a Spanish girlfriend,      shining amidst the urbane glitter.
               to immediately seek a higher profile      and before plunging in to politics           As the nation remembers his fa-
               role. Rahul and his sister, Priyanka      he travelled to Pakistan to witness      ther on the 18th anniversary of his
               Vadhera, managed their mother’s           a cricket match in 2003 with sister      death, Indian political analysts are
               campaign for By-election to RaeBa-        Priyanka. But, for the last two years    observing the future of India in Ra-
               reilly in 2006, which was won easily      he really worked a back-breaker.
                                                                                                  hul. Since he has a template for future
               with a margin greater than 400,000        The writer of these lines witnessed
                                                                                                  politics, which are clearly reflected
               votes. he was a prominent figure in       his Discovery of India journey to the
               a high-profile Congress campaign          interior parts of the country from       in his words, he has been observed
               for the 2007 Uttar Pradesh Assembly       Kalahandi-Bolangir-Koraput (Orissa)      as a potential PM of the country. For
               elections; Congress, however, won         to holikoti in Karnataka. he has         example, after winning elections
               only 22 seats with 8.53 percent of        stayed in a hut and had lunch with       Rahul does not scold the opposition
               the votes, but his presence made the      a local tribe and interacted with rep-   for its lower level speeches during
               whole campaign sublime. The elec-         resentatives of cotton farmers, the      campaigning, rather he praised the
               tion saw the Bahujan Samaj Party,         main crop in the northern belt of        leader of the opposition, L.K. Advani,
               which represents low caste Indians,       the Karnataka. The people of India       for fighting bravely in a tough elec-
               become the first party to govern in       are easily attracted to innocence. Ra-   tion. This shows the humbleness he
               its own right in Uttar Pradesh in 16      hul’s outright admission of reality      inherited from his father.
               years.                                    won a place in the hearts of millions.
                                                                                                      Also, Rahul is a tech-savvy person-
                    Rahul Gandhi was appointed a         Rahul accepted repeatedly the real-
                                                                                                  ality, which is an essential aptitude
               general secretary of the All India Con-   ity that the country was achieving
               gress Committee on Sept. 24, 2007,        rapid development in various fields.     for a potential team leader. This fact
               in a reshuffle of the party secretari-    however, two Indias were develop-        has been revealed from the exercise
               at. In the same reshuffle, he was also    ing within the country: one with         he has done during these elections.
               given charge of the Youth Congress        access to education, health and em-      Rahul Gandhi spent over 16 hours
               and the National Students Union of        ployment and another that was lag-       a day on the campaign trail, but
               India (usually called the NSUI). In his   ging behind. In the course of the Lok    that’s nothing compared to what his
               attempt to prove himself as a youth       Sabha election of 2009, Rahul often      website did – it’s on 24/7. he man-
               leader in November 2008 he held in-       raised this question and tried to find   aged to cover two states a day and
               terviews at his 12 Tuglak Lane resi-      the answer himself. he talked about      address four public meetings, while
               dence in New Delhi to handpick at         his visit to Amethi with British Min-    his website pressbrief.in relayed as
               least 40 people who will make up          ister David Miliband, where they had
                                                                                                  many meetings and that too across
               the think-tank of the Indian Youth        food and spent the night with villag-
                                                                                                  the world. The customized portal
               Congress (IYC), an organization that      ers. Rahul said, “The British minis-
               he has been keen to transform since       ter asked me ‘Where does India gets      also replayed streaming videos and
               he was appointed general secretary        its strength?’ I told him that if he     audio of past public meetings of not
               in September 2007. In the 2009 Lok        wanted to feel the strength of India,    just Rahul, but that of the entire
               Sabha elections, he retained his          he would have to go to villages. The     Nehru-Gandhi family. The site, run
               Amethi constituency by defeating          strength of India could not be un-       by what Congressmen call ‘Team Ra-
               his nearest rival by a margin of over     derstood in an air-conditioned room      hul,’ feeds the media with the latest
               333,000 votes. On May 21, 1991, his       in Delhi.” Thereafter Rahul went on      videos, photographs and speeches of
               father and the then-Premier of In-        telling about how he took Miliband       Rahul, Priyanka and Sonia, and has
               dia Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated         to Amethi, had food, talked to peo-      all that the party offices, the media
               by Tamil rebels. Rahul was 21 when        ple and spent the night. he said that    and the cable networks need. This
               his father was killed by the LTTe         a foreigner easily understood the
                                                                                                  indicates that he will also pay great-
               and was 14 when his grandmother,          strength of India, but the BJP could
               Indira Gandhi, was assassinated by                                                 er attention to the IT sector, from
                                                         not understand it. he criticized the
               her own bodyguards. he completed          opposition for not recognizing the       where about 1 million unemployed
               his schooling in Delhi and studied at     hard labor, struggle, optimism and       youths are coming out every year.
               harvard. Rahul clarified during elec-     honest values of the villagers and
               tioneering that he received a M.Phil      said that the opposition was trapped                  (With input from agencies)
               from Trinity College, Cambridge. he       in a complete hangover of an India




AP-1.indd 19                                                                                                                      6/5/09 10:57:21 AM
        20        business




        employee motivation –
        the power is in there!
        BY ARPAN BANeRJee                                                                      change to a great extent. Take, for ex-
        VP Business Development,                                                               ample, the current economic down-
                                                                                               turn when many companies are resort-
        Innominds Software




        T
                                                                                               ing to survival tactics like downsizing.
                                                                                               Priorities of organizations change, and
                     here are several                                                          interpersonal activities and employee
                     myths about em-                                                           motivational programs strangely take
                                                                                               a backseat. This results in an environ-
                     ployee motiva-                                                            ment where fear and uncertainty rule,
                     tion that exist                                                           creating a negative vibe.
                     today. The most                                                                This is the time to indulge in the
                                                                                               use of innovative, reliable and com-
                     popular one is                                                            prehensive systems in the workplace
        that people can be motivat-                                                            to help motivate employees. For ex-
        ed. Well, not really. “You can                                                         ample, a clear corporate communica-
                                                                                               tion system to take employees into the
        bring a horse to water, but                                                            company’s confidence; establish com-
        you can’t make it drink,” as                                                           pensation and performance incentive
        the old saying goes. You can-                                                          systems; organizational policies and
                                                                                               procedures; and sustained employee
        not motivate people. The key                                                           motivational programs. Various sys-
        is, however, to set up an en-               ization needs (Maslow’s hierarchical       tems and structures such as these help
                                                    model) fulfilled. Self-actualization is    ensure clear understanding and equi-
        vironment that will empow-                  the need to maximize one’s potential.      table treatment of employees, which
        er the employees to motivate                The onus is on an organization to pro-     takes care of the primary needs as
        themselves. Also, it is wise                vide employees the platform to maxi-       per Maslow’s hierarchical model, and
                                                    mize their potential as they desire.       drives the self-actualization needs,
        to understand that different                    At the same time, any employee         which provides the platform for em-
        people are motivated by dif-                motivation program should not lose         ployee motivation.
        ferent things and a “one-size-              its focus on the key objectives. em-            To start with, make a list of the top
                                                    ployees can be all fired up about their    five motivators of your employees and
        fits-all” approach will not                 work and be working very hard. how-        then have your employees fill out a list
        work.                                       ever, if the results of their work don’t   through a survey. The order of prior-
                                                    contribute to the goals of the organiza-   ity or even certain line items may dif-
            Money, fear, job satisfaction, in-      tion, then the organization is no better   fer between your impression of what
        centives and various other perks, flex-     off than if the employees were sitting     you think is important for them and
        ible timing, training and learning and      on their hands! Identifying the goals      what they think is important. Talking
        various other tools are used at random      for the organization is usually done       to employee groups and one-on-one
        by organizations with the belief that       during strategic planning. The steps       will help you understand the motiva-
        a combination of these tools will mo-       taken next to support the motivation       tional factors even more. Work with
        tivate their employees. These tools in      of the employees are aligned to build      your employees to ensure that these
        isolation indeed motivate people for        an environment that is aligned with        motivational factors are taken into
        a short term or even a slightly longer      the corporate goals.                       consideration in your rewards system
        term. The chance is that one or two in          Another factor to remember is          and corporate behavioral style. A good
        combination will definitely work for        the phenomenon of change. Orga-            starting point will be to acknowledge
        an individual as long as all areas are      nizations change all the time, as do       the employees’ importance and com-
        covered. While, there is nothing wrong      people. hence, sustaining an environ-      municate effectively how their contri-
        with this formula, none of these tools      ment where employees can strongly          butions affect corporate results.
        work in isolation within the environ-       motivate themselves is a continuous             employees are motivated through
        ment and culture of an organization.        process. Cultivating strong interper-      a show of care and concern. But sincer-
            So, instead of focusing on the tools,   sonal relationships with employees         ity is a must, and setting aside time to
        an organization has to work towards         to motivate them may not work at all       be with each of them is recommend-
        building an environment and culture         times. Particularly at times of stress,    ed. Skills in delegation should be culti-
        that empowers employees to develop          the nature of these relationships can      vated, as it can free up a great deal of
        themselves and have their self-actual-




AP-1.indd 20                                                                                                                                6/5/09 10:57:22 AM
               time for managers and supervisors. It also allows employees
               to take a stronger role in their jobs, which usually means
                                                                                    an internal corporate blog
                                                                                       •    IMpressions is working on creating an IMpressions
               more fulfillment and motivation in their jobs. Another fact
                                                                                            portal with interactive facilities including blogs to
               to remember is that employees must be rewarded when
                                                                                            further provide a platform for the exchange of in-
               the time comes and as soon as the time comes. Procrastina-
                                                                                            formation and corporate communication
               tion will spoil the show. That’s why every success should
               be celebrated in whatever appropriate way. Without ongo-
               ing acknowledgement of success and appreciation of good
                                                                                    Creating a structured Csr face
               work (both internally and from the external customer per-            of Innominds
               spective), employees become frustrated, skeptical and even              •    It organized its first blood donation drive, which
               cynical about their efforts for the organization.                            also attracted positive media attention.
                   Let me cite an example of an employee motivational ini-             •    Organizing a corporate handloom mela for the ben-
               tiative taken by my organization, Innominds software. The                    efit of the handloom weaver community of Andhra
               initiative started in February 2008, the brink of the break-                 Pradesh.
               out of the global financial crisis that started the meltdown.           •    Other CSR activities followed with more participa-
               The Innominds management team firmly believed in the                         tion from within, like Bihar Flood Relief along with
               idea of building a team within the organization “for the                     TCS and hYSeA organizations.
               people, by the people,” which will champion employee mo-                •    Currently, IMpressions is planning various activities
               tivation and the spirit within. Thus was born an organiza-                   and movements to create a Green environment at
               tion called “IMpressions” within Innominds (IM capitalized                   workplaces, a tree-planting movement in hyderabad
               – highlighting Innovative Minds).                                            city and popularizing public transport and carpool-
                   IMpressions, formed with volunteers across the ranks,                    ing to reduce traffic problems by encouraging office
               is an independent (it does not report to any function head)                  workers to use public transport at least once a week.
               and autonomous body made up of Innominds employees
               and acting as an agent of change in the organization in or-          •        Organizing several internal social events like na-
               der to usher in positive changes through various activities          tional dress day, khadi wear day, tree planting day, a paint-
               and initiatives in culture, Corporate Social Responsibilities,       ing competition and the Diwali lighting festival with a cen-
               internal communication, team spirit and employee motiva-
                                                                                    tral theme to create bonding among employees and have
               tion.
                                                                                    fun at the same time.
                   The primary objective of being a change agent towards
               building a positive atmosphere within Innominds, IMpressions         •        Organizing an intra-group competition to build an
               focuses on enhancing:                                                atmosphere of healthy competition charged with positive
                   •    effective communication channels                            energy.
                   •    Camaraderie and team building                                  •    The Innominds employees were divided into
                   •    healthy competition across teams                                    four teams (across all functions) of equal size and
                   •    Professional culture and etiquette                                  strength. The teams were named “Power Panthers,”
                   •    Boosting morale and creating a bond with the In-                    “Regal eagles,” “Raging Rhinos” and “Bashing Bulls”
                        nominds brand identity                                              – to signify power, speed, vitality and endurance as
                   •    Feel-good factor and pride in being an Innomind-                    the spirit of all socio-cultural and sports competi-
                        sian                                                                tions.
                   •    Organizational development activities
                                                                                       •    Starting last August, teams compete against
                   •    Creative spirit leading to ideas and innovation
                                                                                            each other in multiple sports and cultural disci-
                                                                                            plines – with the winners taking the honors after
                   IMpressions has its own operating body and office bear-
                                                                                            a 12-month-long schedule of competitions. The
               ers with various responsibilities consisting of specialists
                                                                                            12-month calendar also features a socio-cultural
               from various departments to handle specific operational
                                                                                            night and an Annual Sports day.
               tasks. The team does frequent surveys and maintains an
                                                                                       •    The key feature of the competition is that the ex-
               ongoing dialogue with employees at various levels to un-
                                                                                            ecutive management team members run the four
               derstand the dynamics and pulse of the organization and
                                                                                            teams as presidents and vice presidents and play
               decides on and implements action plans to address employ-
               ee-related organizational issues under the principal of Inter-               significant roles in motivating and encouraging
               nal Marketing and Internal Branding. It undertakes various                   their teams to win. In all events, participation of
               intra-company activities like sports, socio-cultural activi-                 the senior management team is mandatory, which
               ties, internal branding and posters, an internal newsletter                  has been the case thus far with remarkable regular-
               (also called IMpressions) and Corporate Social Responsibil-                  ity.
               ity activities.                                                         •    IMpressions is also working on a plan to organize
                                                                                            campaigns to propagate positive values among em-
                   IMpressions is in a constant state of evolution ever since its
                                                                                            ployees through activities like Buddy Week, Time
               inception. As new members join, the team keeps up its learning
                                                                                            Management and Office etiquette workshops, pre-
               curve at a sustained basis. Following are some of the activities
                                                                                            sentations and external training programs.
               the team has implemented:

                   a monthly in-house newsletter                                        IMpressions is just an example of an initiative taken by
                   •   To serve as a communication platform for top man-            the people, for the people at Innominds. It reinforces the
                       agement to the employees with regular articles and           theory that the members of an organization understand
                       Q&A sessions                                                 what motivates them best and can work together to create
                   •   A platform to broadcast announcements, news,                 an environment to achieve the best results. The organiza-
                       awards and other happenings at Innominds                     tional and top management support and participation is, of
                   •   To propagate writing habits and creativity in em-            course, mandatory – without which, any such initiative will
                       ployees                                                      not survive the test of time.
                   •   To propagate Innominds’ branding identity and cul-               It’s time for corporate management teams to start look-
                       ture across the organization                                 ing at this reality.




AP-1.indd 21                                                                                                                              6/5/09 10:57:22 AM
        22        it




        Bright days ahead: Indian
        It Industry to get a Boost
        RAJANI BABURAJAN                           the sustainable development of the         channel for “continued bilateral trade




        A
                                                   country, even as it takes decisive steps   development with no deviations on
                                                   to immediately put the economy back        protectionist moves through visas and
                        new era be-                on a high-growth trajectory.”              taxation,” is one of the several sugges-
                        gins in India.                 NASSCOM urges the government           tions made in this regard.
                        With the 25th              to act against all odds, especially the
                                                   latest anti-outsourcing strategies ad-     Where to start?
                        Assembly                   opted by the Obama administration.              India, though rich in human re-
                        elections giv-             While Obama’s ‘No More Bangalore’          sources, has not yet been able to lever-
                        ing birth to a             campaign should be taken extremely         age the potential lying in rural areas.
                                                   seriously, the Indian IT industry still    The number of unemployed youth is
        stable Congress-led govern-                hopes that the U.S. will reconsider the    still rising. Those who get the maxi-
        ment, India has shown the                  decision, since the move will further      mum benefits of the employment
        first signs of economic recov-             deteriorate its economy.                   opportunities created out of outsourc-
                                                       R. Chandrasekaran, president           ing services are a lucky few residing
        ery. Forget the Black Monday               and managing director of Cognizant,        in major cities. The educated young
        that sprang up when the last               agrees with the industry opinion. “We      talents in the rural areas are pushed
        UPA government announced                   would have to keep in mind that any        behind due to a lack of opportuni-
                                                   impact of this potential change will be    ties. Companies are reluctant to set
        the coalition with the Marxist             significant for all U.S. multinationals    up establishments in the rural areas –
        party. Look at the way stock
        market responded on May
        18. That day will be written
        in golden scripts in Indian                While obama’s ‘no more Bangalore’ campaign should
        history, especially because                be taken extremely seriously, the Indian It industry
        the world record of that one-
        day high was achieved by the
                                                   still hopes that the u.s. will reconsider the decision,
        Indian stock exchange when                 since the move will further deteriorate its economy.
        the rest of the world is fac-
        ing the worst-ever financial
        crisis.
                                                   with global operations. In fact, with      thanks to the poor infrastructure and
             It’s good news for the IT indus-      extreme interpretation, it could pos-      communications facilities.
        try as well, no doubt. The National        sibly make the U.S. multinationals,            With the broadband subscriber-
        Association of Software and Service        in general, far less competitive than      base expected to touch 20 million by
        Companies (NASSCOM), as the repre-         their global counterparts and I don’t      2010 from the current 6 million, there
        sentative of the industry, expressed       think this would be in the interest of     is a lot of scope for the growth of IT
        its satisfaction and optimism towards      the U.S. companies.”                       and related businesses in rural India.
        the industry-friendly government led           Offshoring business in India           IT services companies are keen on
        by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.          might get affected if Obama sticks         moving to rural areas. This is mainly
        The industry association immediately       to his strategies. Before the decision     due to the low cost of operations and
        released a statement, calling the atten-   strikes the world’s biggest IT hub, the    the potential talent lying in these re-
        tion of investors worldwide and giving     government needs to act. The Indian        gions, combined with minimum em-
        no respite to Prime Minister Singh but     government should immediately open         ployee attrition levels. The emergence
        to act.                                    up bilateral talks with the Obama ad-      and success of rural BPO setups like
             In the statement issued on May 16,    ministration and devise strategies that    Soucepilani is the best example to sub-
        NASSCOM said, “In the current global       would benefit both countries.              stantiate this fact. Government can do
        economic environment, it is impor-             NASSCOM, in its statement, espe-       a lot better to organize businesses in
        tant that India has a stable and pro-      cially wants the government to ad-         rural areas and small cities and bring
        gressive political environment that        dress these issues. Building interna-      them into the mainstream.
        can focus on long-term policies for        tional relations and creating a smooth         NASSCOM has urged the govern-




AP-1.indd 22                                                                                                                             6/5/09 10:57:23 AM
                                                                                                                                bangalore




               ment to “initiate a time-bound pro-       NASSCOM said.                                tionwide security program as one of
               gram for extending broadband to all            There are several key issues that       its top three priorities.
               villages as mentioned in the Congress     need to be addressed from the grass-              Industry captains are looking for
               manifesto, so as to provide Internet      roots level. India can no longer tolerate    more favorable policies from the gov-
               access to all citizens and back this up   another Satyam-like scam, nor it can         ernment. They want an extension of
               with steps to increase computer pen-      take the security issues surrounding         tax benefits, especially for SMes. De-
               etration.”                                the cities lightly. every blow, whether      spite several round of discussions, the
                   however, the provision of broad-      it is a scam or a bomb blast, is likely to   government did not reach a favorable
               band services will address only one of    have a direct impact on the economy.         decision on the removal of multiple
               the several issues faced by the indus-    When the Satyam scam hit headlines,          taxes on issues like FBT, service tax,
               try. equally important is the develop-    the world was waiting to see where           etc.
               ment of transport services and meet-      the IT industry in India is moving.
               ing energy demands. NASSCOM has           however, the Indian government act-          Looking Back
               high hopes on the integrated IT-BPO       ed wisely. With the help of experts in           At this time, it is appropriate to
               townships like that working through-      the industry, the government success-        have a sneak peak into the significant
               out the main cities and in the National   fully managed the crisis and ensured         changes that have happened in the IT
               Capital Region (NCR). The Special eco-    the world that no scam can uproot the        industry over the past couple of years.
               nomic Zones (SeZs) proposed across        IT business in India. It has grown and           Despite the weakening economy,
               the IT hubs of the country should be      spread like a giant tree.                    the Indian IT industry gave a positive
               given high priority. Apart from these,         Similar was the case when the           response, say experts. Most signifi-
               the Association urges the government      Mumbai terrorist attacks shattered           cant of them is the transition of the
               to provide fiscal incentives for the      the dreams of several companies do-          IT industry, especially the outsourc-
               growth of the IT-BPO industry in Tier     ing business in India. Their concern         ing industry, from the conventional
               2 and Tier 3 towns.                       was genuine. With less than a dozen          business process outsourcing (BPO) to
                   The concern among the young IT        armed men, the enemy was holding             more comprehensive services ranging
               professionals about their career aspi-    the financial capital under siege for        from knowledge process outsourcing
               rations in the U.S. or U.K. is getting    two days. Many thought that would            (KPO) to human resources outsourc-
               diluted, as more Indian companies         be the end of the business in Mum-           ing and further to platform BPO solu-
               have grown to meet the pay demands        bai, but India survived that too. Mum-       tions.
               of these elite candidates. It is a good   bai proved that the strong economic              KPO solutions have gained wid-
               sign since the services of these crème    foundation that has been built over          er acceptance, resulting in higher
               de la crème of the Indian society will    centuries could not be knocked off so        growth rates among key players in
               benefit the industry. To boost the mo-    easily.                                      areas like legal process outsourcing,
               rale of the Indian students and drag           Therefore, the new government           investment research, credit research
               them to the mainstream of national        has a crucial role to ensure the world       and educational services. These pro-
               development, the government should        that such things will not occur again,       cesses have gained complexity with
               also implement the nationwide skill       and India is not susceptible to such ad-     the addition of areas like engineering
               development program and leverage          versities. In its statement, NASSCOM         design, prototype development, etc.
               IT expertise both for enabling educa-     pleads for the government to develop         KPO solutions are attracting more tal-
               tion and imparting employable skills,     and implement a comprehensive na-            ent because this sector is more stable




AP-1.indd 23                                                                                                                           6/5/09 10:57:23 AM
        and secure than industries such as real
        estate, banking and retail.
             Recent developments in the U.S.
        financial markets have created an op-
        portunity for legal process outsourc-
        ing (LPO) services in India. Areas like
        corporate governance, contract draft-
        ing, litigation, legal analytics, risk as-
        sessments and bankruptcy are some
        of the works outsourced to these firms
        operating in India. A survey1 conduct-
        ed by law department consultant Rees
        Morrison and American Lawyer editor
        Aric Press finds that U.S. legal depart-
        ments would spend about US$2 billion
        annually on legal outsourcing by 2013.
        Also, the report finds that U.S. corpo-
        rate law departments will spend about
        3 percent of their budget on legal out-
        sourcing, including LPO.
             IT outsourcing has shifted its focus to                               outsourcing industry of india
        include infrastructure outsourcing. ear-
        lier, IT outsourcing was solely concen-        value chain. Increasing productivity        The challenges would be, therefore,
        trated on application development and          while minimizing the use of resources       to convince the new audience and de-
        software maintenance, but now it has           is important in the wake of pricing         velop new capabilities to adjust to the
        expanded to outsourcing IT infrastruc-         pressures. emphasis should be more          new market conditions.
        ture including security, server, desktops      on profit margins than on revenue.
        and laptops. Platform BPO solutions            This is especially important since the      optimism amidst Loss
        have begun to substantially improve            majority of outsourcing companies               The impact of the recession was
        the quality and speed of new process           will not be able to raise funds from        felt in terms of dollar earnings. Com-
        migration offshore and multi-function          their investor partners. The global re-     moditized services faced pricing pres-
        offshoring services. These services, ac-       cession has further increased competi-      sures and stagnant volumes. The IT
        cording to NASSCOM, would increase IT          tion. Clients are more likely to nego-      industry, which mainly included ap-
        firms’ operating margins per employee          tiate hard about price, indicating that     plication development and software
        while simultaneously reducing capital          overall price may come down by about        maintenance, was affected whereas
        expenditure for their clients.                 5 percent, further squeezing margins        most of the BPO services were not. This
             Another trend noticed last year was       for the outsourcing industry.               is because of the discretionary spend-
        the prudential approach adopted by                 To achieve higher margins, com-         ing on IT services. IT services are often
        venture capitalists and private equity         panies have to invest to create non-        about developing new applications
        groups towards investing in risky ven-         linear growth. The industry is no           and projects, which may be delayed or
        tures. They did not want to repeat the         longer about adding more people             stopped during a crisis period. On the
        mistake that happened in the previous          to create more revenue. Rather, it is       other hand, BPO means less spending
        years when they gave the green light to        about adding more work without add-         for companies on in-house resources;
        anything and everything in BPO. Some           ing more people. Technology can help        hence, they will be the priority of mul-
        of these firms have also urged their           companies achieve this. Investing in        tinational companies especially during
        portfolio companies to manage their            productive technologies has to be a         recession. however, the crisis engulf-
        costs effectively so that they can stand       priority. however, downsizing should        ing the financial institutions is having
        on their own in case investors are not         not be adopted as the immediate op-         some negative impact on the financial
        able to fund further. This trend, to an        tion. Companies have to explore new         services outsourcing sector.
        extent, will help companies to become          growth areas where the existing tal-            According to global consulting
        more fund conscious and stable. This           ents can be utilized.                       firm everest Group, outsourcing has
        is the time to decide who will survive             Diversification to new markets          been growing at a steady 30 percent
        and who will not. With more money              is important, especially in the cur-        rate year over year. The trend is likely
        in hand, investors can look for better         rent scenario when the West is more         to continue for at least the next few
        opportunities. These changes, experts          affected by the slowdown. In a long-        years, though the industry may reflect
        say, will result in consolidation of the       term perspective, new markets will          a slight impact of the slowdown this
        IT market into a group of large players        contribute to further growth in the         year. The agency is hopeful that the
        that can provide end-to-end and global         industry in case it is challenged with a    industry will recover by 2010 and will
        delivery capabilities with deep domain         face-off from the U.S. administration.      push for strong growth thereafter.
        expertise.
             Last, but not the least, is the slow
        attrition rates reported across several
        companies owing to the recession.                  actions needed
        This has enabled these companies to                •    Priority should be given to sustain growth in the IT industry
        cut their expenditures on recruitment              •    Government should work to smooth over international relations
        and human resources development.                        to revive the industry. The industry should shift focus to new markets.
                                                           •    Government should find a way to deal with the anti-outsourcing
        need for a pragmatic                                    attitude of the U.S. administration.
        approach                                           •    Rural industrial growth should be encouraged.
           To sustain growth and improve                   •    Tax incentives should be encouraged.
        gains, the industry has to move up the




AP-1.indd 24                                                                                                                                   6/5/09 10:57:23 AM
                                                                                                                                    it     25

               Information technology
               trends in asia
               BY MATTheW WeIGAND




               I
                      t’s already been talked
                      to death, but the glob-
                      al economic crisis is
                      still affecting almost
                      every aspect of our
                      lives and the trends in
               many different industry sec-
               tors including information
               technology. In Asia, IT trends
                                                                                                                                   singapore
               share common characteris-
               tics with greater global eco-
               nomic trends, but there are
               also some important differ-
               ences.
                   First, overall there are some global     there remained growth nevertheless.        to do something about Asian software
               IT trends that are economy and ge-                                                      piracy. The company has entered into
               ography independent. According to a          piracy Continues                           a partnership with hangzhou, China,
               New Jersey Technology Council (NJTC)             One of the most controversial of       in which the software giant will help
               study on the global IT industry, tradi-      the global IT trends is software piracy,   the city develop its IT industry. In re-
               tional Microsoft applications are los-       which is still rampant throughout          turn, city officials will encourage the
               ing ground to more open-source, mo-          most of Asia. While studies about the      use of legitimate software by people
               bile and wireless solutions as strategic     use of illegal software are notoriously    in its jurisdiction. Alec Cooper, who
               technologies. In fact, one remarkable        difficult to conduct with any sort of      helped design the deal, told reporters,
               aspect of the IT industry is that it has     accuracy, the advocacy group Busi-         “In partnering with the municipality
               more powerful and ubiquitous global          ness Software Alliance and IT research     of hangzhou, we are taking a unique
               trends than other industries. Stepha-        company IDC did one anyway. Accord-        approach to improving the IPR (intel-
               nie Gagnon, a professor at the Univer-       ing to their numbers, the use of pirat-    lectual property rights) environment.”
               sity of Quebec who helped conduct the        ed PC software dropped by 1 percent        Microsoft’s previous efforts to combat
               study, said, “The exceptional degree of      from 2007 to 2008 in Asia. The study       software piracy in China was by de-
               globalization in IT firms is also a factor   said that 36 percent of all software       ploying its customary Windows Genu-
               explaining their similarities in strate-     used globally was pirated. In Asia, the    ine Advantage validation software,
               gic focus.” So most information tech-        percentage was significantly higher.       which turned a computer’s desktop
               nology firms will hear about new ideas           The study tried to measure piracy      black once every hour if it failed a vali-
               and adapt them to their businesses           rates in 110 countries in all. In Asia,    dation test. Chinese users, however,
               within weeks or months of each other,        the largest concentration of software      labeled the practice as unfair, and the
               which creates a very fluid and flexible      piracy was in China with an 80 per-        entire incident had the country up in
               environment for innovation.                  cent estimated piracy rate. India fol-     arms.
                   The study also divided up the IT         lowed close behind with an estimated
               industry by region, and looked at each       68 percent of software as illegitimate.    hiring trends
               one individually. Comparatively, U.S.-       hong Kong runs with 48 percent of all          On the business side of the IT in-
               based businesses were hit the hardest        its software permanently borrowed.         dustry, there are clouds with silver lin-
               by the economic crisis. The investment       South Korea followed, with an esti-        ings. In mid-2008 Asia was touted as
               and business outlook of companies            mated 43 percent of software being         one of the most popular destinations
               were both down in the States, indicat-       pirated. In contrast, the country with     for technology executives who were
               ing that the U.S. IT industry is low on      the lowest amount of pirated software      interested in relocating both from the
               extra cash. Asia, by contrast, showed        is the United States, at 20 percent.       U.S. and europe. In an interview with
               a slowing of its industry’s growth, but          Microsoft, for one, is taking steps    ZDNet Asia, Kathryn Yap, managing




AP-1.indd 25                                                                                                                              6/5/09 10:57:25 AM
        Korea took singapore’s rank from last year, jumping up from ninth. India actu-
        ally dropped this year to 54th place. China overtook India this year, going from
        57th to 46th. hong Kong dropped by one place, pushed down by Korea.

        partner at CTPartners Singapore, said, Singapore stands out as one of the usage of the latest ICT technologies
        “Candidates are particularly open to strongest IT economies in all of Asia. available. In total, 134 economies were
        the tech sector for relocation because When looking at the big picture, Sin- reviewed in this year’s report.
        of the growth markets in Asia.” hong gapore has been climbing all IT-related                                  Singapore’s performance in this
        Kong and Singapore were specifically indices steadily, and now stands out as index has been attributed to its strong
        cited as the easiest and most popular fourth on the Networked-Readiness focus on education and public-private
        relocation targets in a poll of 201 se- Index (NRI) of the Global Information partnerships. Also, its status as a city-
        nior executives in the U.S. and europe Technology Report 2008-2009, which state helps it out a lot, because all of
        conducted by CTPartners.                        was produced by the World economic its citizens are centrally located. Irene
            But in the second quarter of 2009 Forum (WeF) in partnership with busi- Mia, co-editor of the report and direc-
        this is no longer the case. While IT ness school Insead. This is one place tor at the World economic Forum, was
        companies throughout                                                                                                     reported to have said,
        Asia still expect to hire                                                                                                “Singapore’s prowess
        some candidates, most
        companies are cutting              asIan eConomIes on the nrI                                                            in ICT readiness has
                                                                                                                                 much to do with its
        back on their hiring                                                                                                     excellent market and
                                      Country                      ranking in 2008/09 ranking in 2007/08
        plans. This is the third                                                                                                 regulatory      environ-
        straight quarter during       Singapore                    4                             5                               ment, conducive to
        which companies have          Korea                        11                            9                               innovation and ICT ad-
        cut back on new hires                                                                                                    vances, as well as with
        in the region. executive      hong Kong                    12                            11                              the prominent and
        recruitment company           Taiwan                       13                            17                              consistent role played
        hudson indicated that         Japan                        17                            19                              by the government in
        there would be fewer                                                                                                     setting a vision for ICT
        openings for approxi-         Malaysia                     28                            26                              penetration and inno-
        mately 20 percent of          China                        46                            57                              vation-based develop-
        companies in Asia from                                                                                                   ment.”
                                      Thailand                     47                            40
        April to June of this                                                                                                         Leading     experts
        year. The firm surveyed       India                        54                            50                              drew     attention    to
        companies in four ma-         Vietnam                      70                            73                              the performance of
        jor markets – China,                                                                                                     China in this index,
        Singapore, Japan and          Indonesia                    83                            76                              as it jumped consider-
        hong Kong – to find out       Philippines                  85                            81                              ably in rankings. Tai-
        what their hiring plans       Cambodia                     126                           115                             wan and Japan were
        were for 2009. Of these                                                                                                  also reported to have
                                      Source: World economic Forum.
        four different Asian di-      The WeF’s Global Information Technology Report 2008-2009 covered 134 economies worldwide   made significant ad-
        visions, hong Kong was                                                                                                   vances compared to
        doing the worst. Forty-                                                                                                  the previous year. On
        three percent of compa-                                                                                                  the opposite side of
        nies surveyed there planned to reduce higher than last year. In comparison, the spectrum, Cambodia, Indonesia
        the number of new executive hires, Korea took Singapore’s rank from last and Thailand dropped the furthest in
        and only 6 percent of companies in- year, jumping up from ninth. India ac- points. India and the Philippines each
        dicated that they would hire more ag- tually dropped this year to 54th place. dropped four spots while Malaysia and
        gressively. These numbers are at a sev- China overtook India this year, going Korea both dropped two spots.
        en-year low for the province. On the from 57th to 46th. hong Kong dropped                                     So while the IT industry in the U.S.
        opposite side of the spectrum, Japan by one place, pushed down by Korea. is pessimistic, with fewer new hires
        was doing the best, with 31 percent Japan reached 17th, up two places from and no expectations for rapid growth,
        of IT companies surveyed planning last year. In first and second places the IT industry in Asia is growing
        to expand their employees, and only were Denmark and Sweden, while the steadily and quickly. Despite global
        20 percent indicating they would hire United States was third.                                           economic problems, a significant mi-
        fewer people. China and Singapore                    But what does this index mean? nority of Asian IT firms are still hiring
        were both somewhere in the middle The index measures the effectiveness and expanding. Despite the rampant
        of the road. In China, 27 percent of of an economy with respect to infor- software piracy in the region – or per-
        companies said that they would cut mation and communication technolo- haps because of it – all aspects of the IT
        back on new hires, while 25 percent gies (ICT) based on three different sector are exploding in this part of the
        said they would hire even more new areas. The first area is the ranking of world. The evaporation of large sums
        faces. In Singapore, 22 percent of com- business, regulatory and infrastructure of imaginary money has not destroyed
        panies were hiring more, while 20 per- environment for ICT. The second area the IT industry in Asia, merely slowed
        cent were reducing hiring.                      is the measurement of the readiness it down a bit. It will surely pick up in
                                                        and capacity of individuals, businesses the future and flower into a new, more
        singapore stands out                            and governments to benefit from ICT. powerful thing. We can look forward
            Despite being middle of the road in The third factor weighed is the actual to finding out what that will be.
        hiring new executives, on other fronts




AP-1.indd 26                                                                                                                                                 6/5/09 10:57:25 AM
               With Best
               Compliments
                   From




                Groovekorea.com
AP-1.indd 27                      6/5/09 10:57:34 AM
        28            it




       helping semiconductor
       firms achieve high
       performance by
       simplifying Business
       PRADeeP ChAKRABORTY




       e
                  ngineers in the global semi-
                  conductor industry typically
                  have considerable control over
                  their work. Processes are pret-
                  ty straightforward, sequential,
                  and logical – and satisfying for
       an honest day’s work.
           however, due to the ongoing global economic down-
       turn, many of these engineers are rapidly losing control of
       more of their professional lives. Caught like the rest of the
       world in a recession, they are losing control of what work
       they are assigned to do, how they do it, in what sequence,
       by when and with whom.
           Given these interrelated problems, many semiconduc-
                                                                            4.   Reducing the “time to cash” for new products.
       tor companies need to make rapid and fundamental chang-
                                                                            5.   Sharpening customer focus through more in-depth
       es in their business operations, strategies and workforce
                                                                                 and accurate customer insight.
       management practices to emerge from this downturn, and
                                                                            6.   Pursuing alliances to share the cost burden of new
       for years beyond, to maintain their high performance.
                                                                                 product development.
           Once this recession ends, these people will be entering
                                                                            7.   Acquiring key assets.
       a market with a different landscape than the market that
       existed when the downturn began. They need to figure out
                                                                            Let’s take a look at some of them in further detail.
       how to restart their businesses, regain their footing and
       connect to a new purpose. They need to address the so-
       called ‘soft’ aspects of business, such as how the engineers
                                                                         1. divesting the business of
       who design chips feel. It’s time for them to pay more atten-      unproductive assets.
       tion to the little things that may seem innocuous, but are            From Accenture’s perspective, it has become evident
       actually central to achieving high performance.                   during the past few years that among the top 20 semicon-
           I was recently able to get hold of Accenture’s recent         ductor makers, a growing number are fabless. That trend
       study: Managing Through Challenging Times! Quite an in-           will continue in the future mainly because fabless com-
       teresting read. Naturally, it led to a conversation with Scott    panies have more competitive cost structures than semi-
       Grant, executive Global Lead of Accenture’s Semiconduc-           conductor manufacturing companies that incur such high
       tor Operating Unit, who led the research and analysis of          fixed-asset costs for their operations. Accenture’s custom-
       this new Accenture report about these issues and recom-           ers are seeking to understand the business’ operating mod-
       mended solutions.                                                 el that best fits their desired position in the market. Our
                                                                         assessment leads to having a leaner product portfolio.
       accenture’s report has several                                        The first thing we look at is true cost at length. Tra-
       suggestions or recommendations.                                   ditionally, industry looks at cost-per-wafer metrics. Accen-
                                                                         ture studies what the hidden costs are. We look at Total
               1.   Divesting the business of unproductive assets.
                                                                         Cost to Land including NPI re-spin costs, complete organi-
               2.   Infusing a higher degree of operational excellence
                                                                         zation costs, advanced manufacturing process costs, plus
                    into the business.
                                                                         the traditional material and labor costs. The goal is to find
               3.   Maintaining morale and energy in the workforce,
                                                                         a fair comparison with an external manufacturing model
                    especially in the key area of innovation.




AP-1.indd 28                                                                                                                             6/5/09 10:57:34 AM
               that presents key improvement opportunities.                      Sometimes amid the change, a semiconductor com-
                    We also look for an integrated roadmap for manu-         pany needs to ask whether it has thought beyond the
               facturing, design technology and intellectual property        change event (portfolio, workforce or facility reductions)
               (IP). There are opportunities to better use IP investments    and is also focused on the complete organizational transi-
               across both leading products and derivatives, resulting       tion. This is a process of communication – to help employ-
               in reduced costs in product ramp/readiness. To divest of      ees reconnect with their companies. Getting employees to
               unproductive assets, high performing firms build an ac-       understand, adapt and connect to the new direction takes
               curate and balanced cost baseline for comparison.             a lot longer, and it also impacts productivity. Yet it must
                    In addition, we also look at strategic sourcing. Semi-   be emphasized.
               conductor companies often ask how they can lower costs.
               Sometimes this has the adverse affect within material         4. reducing the time to cash for new
               quality. Strategic sourcing is an important factor to bal-
               ance both sides of this equation. We suggest that our cli-
                                                                             products.
                                                                                 When companies industrialize the market concept,
               ents compare costs objectively against their peer groups
                                                                             and they procure design win opportunities, we tend to
               and external suppliers. Many times we see lower direct
                                                                             see critical components involved with this: a) maintain-
               material costs through use of external manufacturing
                                                                             ing relationships of requirements from market analysis
               models, because of the manufacturing supplier’s econo-
                                                                             through the final manufacturing build plan; b) leaders
               mies of scale.
                                                                             who use consistent lifecycle management of a product
               2. Infusing a higher degree of opera-                         development flow; and c) IP management with integrated
                                                                             roadmap portfolio capabilities.
               tional excellence into the business.                              “Firms at times are not able to convert concepts to
                    Traditionally, semiconductor companies were all about    cash quickly. The process to integrate them has several
               operational excellence. In the late 1990s and early 2000s,    gaps including innovation lifecycles, conversion of R&D
               the industry was all about R&D excellence. Now, we see        concepts to volume products and the ability to optimize
               operational excellence in terms of sales and marketing –      the engineering capacity constraints within their P&Ls.”
               the number of feet on the ground and the amount of time           Product lifecycle management, portfolio & market an-
               invested per design wins. Accenture strives to understand     alytics and engineer skills/human resource management
               how companies better integrate sales operations into the      help to address these gaps. Portfolio management and the
               manufacturing and production operation process.               roadmap planning process are a must. When done, semi-
                    Given the focus on external manufacturing, opera-        conductor companies will be able to map quickly with the
               tional excellence is now being applied to the IP ecosys-      customers and the market insights.
               tem. IP management is critical for the current industry
               landscape. Semiconductor companies need to have a com-        5. sharpening customer focus
               pelling argument to differentiate their IP. IP management
               and external management have been the crux of the strat-
                                                                             through more in-depth and accurate
               egy. Companies see design importance growing. They see        customer insight.
               the change in their clients’ requests towards a focus on          Most firms won’t survive if they are unable to gain
               sales operation and the IP ecosystem.                         rapid adoption of their product offering. From our experi-
                    We see a few shifts in sales operations. Many of Ac-     ence, high performing companies build detailed customer
               centure’s clients are challenged when they take emerg-        usage-models and insight into end-device markets early in
               ing products into certain regional and local markets. One     their R&D process.
               key challenge is the ability to maintain consistency in           The challenge many find is that without this baseline
               quoting, contracting and ordering. The other challenge        of understanding it is difficult to convert concepts into
               is training and investing in sales. Sales is being asked to   cash once the end-product is delivered to the market.
               do more. They seem to spend 45 percent of their time in           Many of the insights are available from Point of Sale
               non-sales activities such as administrative tasks. however,   trends, which can help a semiconductor firm exist at ei-
               they need to spend much more of their total time than         ther an OeM (PC, handset, etc.) or distributor. high per-
               that on sales activities and have others do more of the       formers have enhanced the relationship with their work
               administration.                                               collaborators and customers to gain access to this data.
                    When Accenture examines the sales cycles of semi-        They also build a “Trusted Advisor” relationship where
               conductor companies, we tend to see limited performance       they build scenarios for each end market to better predict
               metrics that follow. These companies tend to adhere to        what their end-customer may desire in features or func-
               regional sales models – and the complexity arises regard-     tions.
               ing how to be consistent with quoting, contracting and            It is difficult for a semiconductor firm to know how
               ordering.                                                     a product will be used. It is really the beginning of gain-
                                                                             ing insight into utilization, the consumer and what us-
               3. maintaining morale and energy in                           age model should be employed. So a semiconductor firm
               the workforce, especially in the key                          should study carefully how things can be used in the mar-
                                                                             ket. User behavior is crucial. If companies don’t under-
               area of innovation.                                           stand that, they may be missing out.
                   One of the key decisions during a downturn is work-
               force reduction. For those employees remaining with the       6. pursuing alliances to share the
               companies after reductions, it’s key for these companies
               to re-enforce their connection to the new strategy, and
                                                                             cost burden of new product develop-
               how can they re-adjust from a training perspective to pre-    ment.
               pare such employees for innovation.                               The point here is to make sure that semiconductor
                   Investing in innovation is a huge priority. The transi-   companies are taking a strategic view and are looking at
               tion Accenture sees in workforce reduction includes en-       the right places to pursue alliances. There’s a lot of impact
               gineers feeling a loss of control. To maintain morale and     in pursuing alliances. When semiconductor companies do
               energy, semiconductor executives need to continue to          this, they can absolutely share the burdens, but it can im-
               communicate strategic objectives to all employees.            pact the operating model.




AP-1.indd 29                                                                                                                       6/5/09 10:57:34 AM
        30        it




        3g-Wimax poised to
        Boost telecom growth
        RAJANI BABURAJAN                                                                   solutions to solve spectrum issues.




        T
                                                                                           We need a stable telecom policy,” Su-
                                                                                           nil Mittal, chairman of Bharti Airtel,
                     he much antici-                                                       said at a recent press conference to
                     pated launch of                                                       announce the company’s 100 million
                     3G and WiMax                                                          mobile customers in India.
                                                                                                “3G enjoys higher voice capacity.
                     services,    de-                                                      The 3G platform could facilitate the
                     pending on the                                                        delivery of far more cost-effective
                     completion of                                                         voice services. It will become the
                                                                                           main platform for wireless Internet
        the spectrum auction by the                                                        access for masses,” said Sanjay Ka-
        new telecom ministry, will                                                         poor, deputy CeO of Bharti Airtel.
        boost the telecom market                                                                RNCOS foresees that around 15
                                                                                           percent of the total broadband sub-
        in India in coming years.                                                          scriber base in India will be using the
        Rollout of 3G and WiMax                                                            high-speed wireless data services via
        services will also bridge the                                                      3G modems or data cards by 2012.
                                                  growth in the Indian broadband mar-      According to analysts, there are sev-
        urban-rural digital divide,               ket have been the challenge of pro-      eral issues that need to be resolved
        facilitating socio-economic               viding high bandwidth connectivity       or carefully worked on in order to en-
        development of the masses.                using landlines and poor PC penetra-     sure viable growth in the Indian 3G
                                                  tion due to high PC prices, especially   market.
            This is a golden opportunity for      in remote and rural areas. “India will        India has more than 400 mil-
        the telecom operators to rake in ad-      achieve the broadband target of 20       lion telephone customers at present.
        ditional revenues at a time when top      million by 2010. Main growth will        From the customers’ standpoint, 3G
        cities are nearing tele-density satura-   come from landline broadband,” said      is undoubtedly a technology that will
        tion and a dwindling ARPU in rural        Vijay Yadav, MD, UTStarcom India.        bring with it a whole host of benefits
        areas, where most of the expansion            A number of applications are go-     as it supports voice, data and video ap-
        of wireless service is currently taking   ing to boost 3G’s usage and growth.      plications simultaneously. Customers
        place.                                    Operators are looking at providing       can enjoy higher-speed downloads,
            The launch of 3G and WiMax ser-       telemedicine, e-education and e-gov-     audio and video streaming, multi-
        vices will boost the coffers the phone    ernance that can be offered through      player gaming experience and newer
        manufacturers and service provid-         3G in the rural areas, which are defi-   applications.
        ers, as well as the government. 3G is     nitely going to improve the living            Moreover, facing tough compe-
        emerging as the accepted technology       standard of people. 3G is expected       tition, operators are bringing new
        platform across geographic boundar-       to facilitate the implementation of      value added services (VAS) in order
        ies because it can deliver high speed     important e-initiatives such as e-gov-   to satisfy the growing demand of In-
        data and voice on a single network.       ernance, e-education, and tele-med-      dian consumers. VAS is increasingly a
        The 3G platform will be primarily         icine. “3G is expected to bridge the     growth area that helps the operator
        used for both voice and mobile broad-     digital divide more than any other       to maximize revenue and grow their
        band on mobile phones, while WiMax        measure or policy introduced by the      ARPU. Currently, mobile VAS accounts
        will be used for broadband access.        government,” said P. Balaji, senior      for approximately 10 percent of the
            A recent research, “Indian 3G Mo-     vice president of marketing and strat-   operator’s revenue, which is expect-
        bile Forecast to 2012,” by RNCOS has      egies at ericsson India.                 ed to reach 18 percent by 2010. VAS
        concluded that 3G, if used as a data          Spectrum crunch is forcing op-       revenue can be improved with the
        card/modem, will boost broadband          erators to halt their investments in     forthcoming 3G launch. The revenue
        penetration in the country. Interest-     2G services. 3G can be instrumental      from mobile value added services has
        ingly, penetration of broadband in the    in alleviating the severe spectrum       already touched Rs.4600 crore (US$1
        country stood at less than 1 percent      crunch being faced by many opera-        billion).
        in 2008 despite the ongoing efforts       tors, especially in the metros and            The deployment of 3G and WiMax
        of all stakeholders to have at least 20   big cities, where there is not enough    services will generate a reasonable
        million broadband users by 2010.          2G spectrum to fuel the aggressive       user base over the next five-year pe-
            The main reasons for the low          growth. “The government should find      riod, before noticeable LTe deploy-




AP-1.indd 30                                                                                                                          6/5/09 10:57:35 AM
               ments begin to make an impact in
               India, according to the latest research
               by Maravedis, in partnership with
               Indian telecom market research and
               analysis firm Tonse Telecom.
                    Despite delayed spectrum auc-
               tions, 3G/BWA/WiMax network activ-
               ity is already on. But the industry can
               expect more action once the govern-
               ment releases the spectrum. For the
               severely underserved Indian broad-
               band market, demand for wireless
               broadband connectivity continues
               across all sectors: retail, SOhO, SMes
               and large enterprises.
                    According to the Maravedis re-
               port, “The big push will be seen
               post-spectrum auctions. however,
               aided by pre-allocation in the 2.5Ghz
               band, incumbents are already devel-
               oping massive national rollout plans
               for both 3G and WiMax. expect sig-
               nificant pan-India deployments from
               other successful auction bidders.”
                    While most of the global econo-
                                                           for Lg, India is an important market due to the op-
               mies are not spending too heavy on          portunities it presents. the company has plans to
               telecom, demand for telecommunica-
               tions services in India continues to        launch more than 32 new models in the country, of
               fuel significant growth in the sector.
               The research estimates that in 2008,        which six will be touch phones, while many other
               approximately 10,000 BWA/WiMax
               base station sectors were deployed
                                                           models will be 3g-enabled and some of these will
               in total. Currently there are about
               300,000 BWA/WiMax users already
                                                           also be entry-level phones.
               using these services.
                    Capex is always a critical issue for
               telecom operators. Wireless Capex               Wireless, which has steered over-         Ronan de Renesse, senior analyst
               has already reached sub-$100 levels         all telecom growth, continued its         for Screen Digest, has recently com-
               per line. This means for most op-           growth trajectory. During the period,     pleted an analysis of the 3G mobile
               erators the primary transport tech-         the total wireless subscriber (GSM,       broadband market. Though the num-
               nology will be wireless in India and        CDMA & WLL(F)) base stood at 391.76       ber of people using mobile networks
               abroad. Innovative business models          million. A total of 15.64 million wire-   to connect to the Internet through a
               will emerge such as public-private          less subscribers have been added dur-     device known as a ‘dongle’ will con-
               partnerships, the sharing of infra-         ing the month of March as compared        tinue to rise, he predicts that the rate
               structure, etc., together with low-cost     to 13.82 million wireless subscribers     of growth is set for a big fall over the
               devices and a vibrant ecosystem. This       added during February.                    next two years.
               has already been seen in India. Most            Despite the growth of broadband           According to Screen Digest, there
               of the greenfield operators are ready       across the country, the landline seg-     has been a significant increase in the
               to share their infrastructure to bring      ment is showing poor growth. In the       usage of mobile broadband in the past
               down the cost.                              landline segment, the subscriber base     two years, especially in europe where
                                                           has increased to 37.96 million in the     usage grew 10-fold from one million
               telecom growth spurts                       month of March compared to 37.73          people in 2006 to nine million in
                   Continuing its poll position by         million subscribers in February, regis-   2008. This way of accessing the Inter-
               beating a number of global markets,         tering an increase of 0.23 million.       net is attractive as an alternative to
               India has added 15.87 million tele-             In fact, 3G and WiMax will fur-       a fixed connection for students living
               phone connections (landline and wire-       ther dent the opportunities of the        in private accommodations, people
               less) during March 2009 as compared         landline segment. On the other hand,      who live in more than one place and
               to 13.82 million connections added          3G and WiMax will further enhance         also people who live in areas where
               in February 2009. With this, the to-        the potential of the telecom market       fixed broadband is not available.
               tal number of telephone connections         since many enterprises and individu-          The growth in mobile broadband
               has reached 429.72 million at the end       al customers will be looking at these     has fuelled a price war between the
               of March 2009 as compared to 413.85         services for a plethora of options.       operators. The number of operators
               million in February.                                                                  offering mobile broadband increased
                   With this growth, the overall tele-     Can 3g mobile Broad-                      nine fold during 2006 and 2007. They
               density has reached 36.98 at the end
               of March as compared to 35.65 in
                                                           band take off?                            have also become more competitive.
                                                                                                     Their competitive strategies have re-
               February. Though India is adding a             According to some global telecom
                                                                                                     sulted in the overall european mar-
               substantial number of new wireless          analysts, the 3G mobile broadband
                                                                                                     ket a growth of euro 1.8 billion in
               customers, tele-density in India is low     success story may be short lived. But
                                                                                                     2008 and accounts for 15 percent of
               when compared with many devel-              Indian operators are betting big on
                                                                                                     all mobile data revenues.
               oped nations.                               3G mobile broadband and there are
                                                                                                         Because of the nature of mobile
                                                           plenty of reasons for this optimism.




AP-1.indd 31                                                                                                                          6/5/09 10:57:35 AM
        broadband, its penetration is
        highest outside of the big five
        markets in europe where fixed                                                            samsung electronics
        broadband is dominant, so
        Ireland, Austria, Portugal and                                                           has launched 14 mo-
        Greece had the highest adop-
        tion rates in 2008, according to
                                                                                                 biles so far this year,
        Screen Digest.                                                                           of which five are touch-
             Despite its growth, contri-
        bution to data revenues and                                                              screen and 3g phones.
        the number of subscribers, de
        Renesse expects to see high                                                              eight more models are
        customer churn rates this year
        and in 2010. “The mobile op-
                                                                                                 in the offing by June
        erators have trapped customers
        into long-term contracts, whilst
                                                                                                 this year. most of its
        failing to deliver the unrealistic                                                       future models will be
        network speeds that encour-
        aged them to sign up in the                                                              in the touch screen/3g
        first place. The service can be
        patchy and users become frus-                                                            category.
        trated – many will switch back
        to fixed broadband if operators
        don’t act quickly.”
                                                                                                 its 3G services to the remaining
             While european growth is
                                                                                                 parts of Delhi in the next two to
        set to reach its lowest in 2010
                                                                                                 three months. BSNL, which has
        at only 4.7 percent, the number
                                                                                                 launched 3G services in some parts
        of connections will rise again
                                                                                                 of the country, has yet to achieve a
        in 2011 and 2012 to reach 22.6
                                                                                                 considerable subscriber base.
        million and a total market val-
                                                                                                     India is expected to reach
        ue of euro 4.6 billion in 2013.
                                                                                                 more than 500 million by 2010.
        De Renesse says, “While this
                                                                                                 As a mobile base, India is recog-
        is potentially good news for
                                                                                                 nized as the second biggest mo-
        stand-alone ISPs, upcoming 4G             models will be in the touch screen/3G          bile growth market after China
        upgrades in 2010 and further price        category.                                   with over 278 million subscribers, a
        reduction would put the final nail in         For LG, India is an important           subscription base that is set to exceed
        the coffin for them.”                     market due to the opportunities it          737 million connections by 2012. This
        aggressive action to                      presents. The company has plans to
                                                  launch more than 32 new models
                                                                                              figure is forecasted to increase by 36
                                                                                              percent to 775 million by the end of
        unfold in India                           in the country, of which six will be        2012. India will have some 730 mil-
            India may tell a different story.     touch phones, while many other mod-         lion mobile phone customers by 2012
        Many telecom equipment vendors            els will be 3G-enabled and some of          and one-fifth of this user base will be
        and operators have announced their        these will also be entry-level phones.      using a 3G connection. India needs a
        intentions to spruce up revenues          entry-level phones are primarily for        strong 3G and WiMax policy to bridge
        through 3G and WiMax. Once the            the rural market, which is expected         the digital divide.
        government comes out with the final       to contribute more than 50 percent of
        policy of the 3G and WiMax spectrum       the wireless customer additions.
        auction, there will be more action in         At present, LG has about three
        the telecom space.                        touch phones and six 3G-enabled
            Both handset vendors and Indian       handsets already in the market and
        telecom operators are gearing up to       the company, which is known for                 Key to growth
        invest heavily in 3G initiatives. Sam-    quality phones, plans to have about             •      Internet access is still the
        sung electronics, one of the leading      10 models each in both of those seg-          big broadband driver in India,
        handset vendors in India, is planning     ments by year-end. Other phone ven-           with wireless
        to chip in $5 million at its India man-   dors like Nokia and Motorola have             broadband becoming the clear
        ufacturing facility this calendar year.   similar expansion plans.                      option owing to economics and
        This is over and above the $24 million        Many operators feel that 3G will          ease of deployment.
        it has already invested at the Noida      require a full ecosystem if it is to work       •      BWA operators have yet
        (Delhi NCR region) facility. Samsung      at full potential. 3G’s success will de-      to resolve many service quality
        electronics is planning to release        pend on the availability of devices,          issues.
        nearly two dozen models in 2009.          applications and content. The GSM               •      India is expected to see
        Aamir Khan will continue to be the        Association is working on getting af-         the world’s lowest end-to-end
        brand ambassador for Samsung.             fordable 3G devices below $50 to cre-         cost for WiMax services, with
            There has been a significant in-      ate the critical mass that is required.       costs driven down faster than in
        crease in demand for touchscreen              MTNL, the government run ser-             any other market.
        and 3G mobile phones in India.            vice provider, will launch its 3G ser-          •      Computer penetration is
        Samsung electronics has launched          vices in Mumbai shortly and is look-          still very low and the Indian tele-
        14 mobiles so far this year, of which     ing to have 100,000 users by the end          com sector operates in a volume-
        five are touchscreen and 3G phones.       of this year. The company, which              driven market.
        eight more models are in the offing       had already launched 3G services in
        by June this year. Most of its future     Delhi last year, would also expand




AP-1.indd 32                                                                                                                            6/5/09 10:57:36 AM
                   With Best
                  Compliments
                            From



                     Accentuating Global Opportunities


               www.cmai.asia and www.nkgoyals.com




AP-1.indd 33                                             6/5/09 10:57:36 AM
        34          inteRview




        Information technology is
        source of Wealth for Korea
        A pioneer of Korea’s IT industry and a living legend of information
        and communication technology development in the country

        BY ChUNG MYUNG-Je                                                                              development of IT technology over
                                                                                                       the past 30 years. how do you evaluate
        Reprinted with permission from                                                                 your own achievements?
        the KoReA IT TImes




        “
                                                                                                            Answer: Korea’s communica-
                                                                                                       tions industry grew fast as a result of
                 Korea’s IT miracle                                                                    the development of TDX telephone
                 started with a tele-                                                                  switching technology and the auto-
                                                                                                       mation of telephone circuit switch-
                 phone revolution                                                                      ing across the country. I supervised
                 in the early 1980s...                                                                 the epoch-making development of
                 when it was be-                                                                       the 4MB RAM chip and the successful
                                                                                                       operation of information and com-
                 lieved to be impos-                                                                   munications systems for the 1988
        sible for Korea to develop                                                                     Seoul Olympics.
        TDX telephone switching                                                                             As Vice Minister of Communica-
                                                                                                       tions in the early 1980s, I focused on
        technology...”                                                                                 installing home telephones through-
            Dr. Oh Myung, president of Konkuk                                                          out the country and developing TDX
        University, has recently published his                                                         technology as the first projects to pro-
        memoirs titled “Dream of Korea 30                                                              mote Korea’s information and commu-
        Years Later” to celebrate his 70th birth-                                                      nications industry by raising sufficient
        day. he led Korea’s telephone revo-                                                            funds. At the time, TDX technology was
        lution when he was Vice Minister of                                                            so new that only six countries includ-
                                                        Dr. oh Myung, president of Konkuk university   ing the United States, Sweden and Bel-
        Communications and served as a Cabi-
        net member four times. As Minister of                                                          gium had developed the technology,
                                                                                                       with India and Brazil having failed in
        Communications, he watched Korean             and chairman of the Dong-A Ilbo daily,           this regard.
        electronics conglomerates develop a           and as president of Ajou University. he               everybody looked stunned at the
        4MB RAM chip in the late 1980s and            has been president of Konkuk Univer-             prospect of the project, which would
        was awarded the title of Stony Brook          sity since 2006 after he last served as          cost 24 billion won [US$31 million in
        Professor by his alma mater, State Uni-       deputy prime minister for Science and            1983]. But I had made up my mind to
        versity of New York at Stony Brook, in        Technology.                                      push for it, given the annual budget
        recognition of his contribution to the            he has worked as a minister or               of 500 billion won [US$645 million in
        successful operation of information           deputy prime minister for five admin-            1983] the government was spending
        and communications systems for the            istrations, under which he implement-            to buy TDX switchboards at that time.
        1988 Seoul Olympics.                          ed various long-term national projects           I also supervised the introduction of
            he begins his memoirs by saying,          including the introduction of color TV,          PSTN [public switched telephone net-
        “A person’s life is like a line consisting    development of TDX, distribution of              work] in March 1983, which made it
        of many dots. The line can be crooked         telephones across the country, devel-            possible to connect faxes and comput-
        or bent or go straight ahead. But no          opment of semiconductor chips, and               ers to landline telephones. That was
        matter how tangled the line is, it            the successful hosting and operation             the very beginning of our country’s
        seems that there is a last dot that must      of the Daejeon eXPO.                             super speed Internet services and data
        be reached. This last dot can be called a         The Korea IT Times interviewed               communications.
        goal in life, a raison d’etre, or a mission   Dr. Oh to hear about his views about
        in life for the person.”                      what he has done for the development                  Q: In addition to the electronics in-
            In his memoirs, he recounts his           of IT technology as the key architect            dustry, you also helped introduce color
        experiences as Minister of Transporta-        of the country’s science and technol-            TV in 1980. The decision helped Korean
        tion, of Construction and Transporta-         ogy administration over the past three           electronics conglomerates prosper lat-
        tion, and of Science and Technology; as       decades and of what future projects he           er. Tell us about what happened then.
        a professor at the Korea Military Acad-       now foresees.                                        A: Color TV was introduced to
        emy, as chairman of the Daejeon eXPO             Question: You have led Korea’s                Korea 20 years later than Japan due
        Organizing Committee, as president                                                             to the public concerns about the pos-




AP-1.indd 34                                                                                                                                   6/5/09 10:57:37 AM
               sible privileged treatment of elec-
               tronic home appliance manufacturers.
               Some people were also worried about
               the possibility of alienating rural and
               fishing villages, many of which didn’t
               have even black and white TVs, from
               urban areas.
                   I believed then that Korea’s elec-
               tronics industry lagged far behind
               even Taiwan’s, because there existed
               no color TV market in the country and,
               therefore, related industries, such as
               TV components and raw materials in-
               dustries, were in a recession. But after
               the color TV was introduced, a color
               revolution took place, and consumers
               began to have a different consumption
               pattern, and related industries, in-            Dr. oh Myung, shakes hands with Mohamed elbaradei, secretary-general of iAeA.
               cluding foods, cosmetics and fashion,
               began to develop. As a result, Korea
               was able to overcome sluggishness in
                                                          ers who were busy working day and            also been given assignments by the
               domestic business and its economy
                                                          night, thinking of Korea 30 years later.     government in six projects, such as
               gained momentum.
                                                          They built Korea as a country with bril-     the development of next-generation
                   But it’s sad to see the country give
                                                          liant achievements from a barren land.       physics-based electronic memory ma-
               up the top place in the IPTV market to
                                                          Now it is the younger generation’s turn      terials, as a prerequisite to becoming
               foreign countries such as France, even
                                                          to do the same. They should think hard       a world-class university. It’s also carry-
               though we were the first in the world
                                                          of what legacy they can hand down to         ing out large-scale national projects in
               to develop it. It’s worse to delay some-
                                                          their descendants 30 years from now.         the fusion technology sector, including
               thing for a long time than to make a
                                                          They should turn Korea into a country        digital content and research on tech-
               wrong choice.
                                                          with a US$40,000 per capita GNP, top-        nology for the digital fashion industry.
                   Q: You’re considered the pioneer       notch technology and the world’s lead-       The school is also focusing on foster-
               of Korea’s IT revolution. What do you      ing tech-savvy country.                      ing the bioengineering and aviation
               think of the country’s level of IT tech-       Today, everybody is suffering un-        and space sectors in which Konkuk is
               nology and what should Korea do to         precedented economic difficulties, but       traditionally strong.
               further develop it?                        there will be no development if there           Q: It seems that Konkuk is imple-
                   A: Some time ago, U.S. Presi-          is no adversity. In the book, I tried to     menting many joint projects with
               dent Barack Obama announced an             recount my experiences and display           overseas research teams, isn’t it?
               IT plan for his country which envis-       my own knowhow with hopes that Ko-
                                                                                                           A: What is noteworthy is that
               ages providing each home with 100          rea will wisely cope with the current
                                                                                                       Konkuk University is seeking the in-
               mbps Internet services by 2012. But        difficulties and grow out of them and
                                                                                                       ternationalization of its research net-
               Korean homes are already using such        become stronger.
                                                                                                       work. We’ve invited three Nobel Prize
               services, which means that Korea is            We should believe in Korea’s po-
                                                                                                       winners as professors and opened the
               far ahead of the United States as far      tential. Faith will bring pride, and
                                                                                                       KU Global Lab. Chairman erkki Lep-
               as Internet speed is concerned. Korea      pride will invoke a sense of mission.
                                                                                                       pavuori of VTT Technical Research
               is now preparing to introduce 1 gbps       We’re afraid of nothing because we
                                                                                                       Center of Finland visited our school
               Internet services by 2012, about 10        have three valuable assets – a strong IT
                                                                                                       recently. Konkuk and VTT established
               times faster than the United States        infrastructure, state-of-the-art science
                                                                                                       a joint lab last year to develop new
               in this regard. Korea is now endowed       and technology, and Koreans’ ardent
                                                                                                       technologies in the IT industry, in-
               with huge amounts of IT infrastruc-        enthusiasm for education.
                                                                                                       cluding a next-generation display. In
               ture, such as the nationwide optical           Q: Since you were inaugurated            addition, we’ve begun joint research
               network and the world’s first WiBro        as president, what changes have you          with eurocopter, the world’s largest
               technology.                                brought to Konkuk University? And            helicopter manufacturer. We’ll soon
                   Many leaders in Latin America,         what special plans do you have to de-        announce a joint research project
               such as Colombia and Paraguay, have        velop the school?                            between Konkuk and a German insti-
               asked me to help them work out an
                                                              A: Konkuk University has devel-          tute.
               IT master plan. Many other countries
                                                          oped significantly since the school              I’m certain that our research ca-
               want to learn from our own IT experi-
                                                          set a goal to join the group of the five     pacity will increase to the level of ad-
               ence. I think we could become a leader
                                                          most prestigious private universities        vanced countries through such joint
               in IT technology, which could turn out
                                                          in Korea by 2011, the 80th anniversa-        research projects and that world-class
               to be a source of wealth for us.
                                                          ry of the school’s founding. As a result     research results will be produced in
                   Q: You’ve recently published your      of recruiting about 100 young profes-        our country sooner or later. It’s im-
               memoirs titled “Dream about Korea 30       sors every year, 56 percent of the en-       portant to concentrate national R&D
               Years Later,” which carries messages       tire faculty are younger-generation          investments on universities. There
               for the younger generation based on        professors who have joined the fac-          will be a virtuous cycle of R&D invest-
               your own experiences. What do you          ulty since 2000 and Konkuk has now           ments and development if the govern-
               say in the book?                           become known as the nation’s fastest         ment makes efficient investments in
                   A: I wanted to recount my own ex-      growing school.                              universities to increase their research
               periences as a man of science, an ad-          Konkuk is a leader in the field of       capacity and universities, in turn, will
               ministrator and an educator. This is a     interdisciplinary studies, which are es-     respond by producing magnificent re-
               story about Korean fathers and moth-       sential for future generations. It has       search results.




AP-1.indd 35                                                                                                                               6/5/09 10:57:37 AM
        36        inteRview




        re-architecting Client
        Business models in a
        Cognizant Way
        R. Chandrasekaran, President and Managing Director, Cognizant


        BY RAJANI BABURAJAN                      panies to adjust to the new environ-       revenue came from the Asia Pacific,




        C
                                                 ment and adopt cost-saving initiatives     Middle east and South America. In ad-
                                                 will only benefit global sourcing. In      dition to focusing on the North Ameri-
                       ognizant Tech-            difficult economic times, clients are      can markets, we continue to build our
                       nology Solu-              more likely to increase their offshore     footprint and capabilities in europe.
                       tions Corpora-            spending in order to get more done         We are increasing our focus on Asia –
                                                 with the same or fewer budget dol-         including India where we have gotten
                       tion provides             lars. however, I don’t think cost is the   early traction. And we are exploring
                       information               only motivation for outsourcing. It is     other emerging markets of the world,
                                                 more about the “value” that outsourc-      such as Latin America and the Middle
                       t e c h n o l o g y,
                                                 ing delivers.                              east, where we have some presence,
        consulting and business pro-                 India enjoys an edge, thanks to        but we think those geographies pres-
        cess outsourcing services to             the scalability, maturity and flexibil-    ent significant opportunities and we
                                                 ity it offers. It is important to build    are underrepresented.
        global clients. The company              upon this lead by focusing more on             Q: During the recession, what are
        boasts 50 global delivery                value than cost. As indicated by some      the strategies to improve customer
        centers and approximately                studies, the cost-differential between     satisfaction?
                                                 the United States and India will con-
        61,700 employees as of De-               tinue for many years to come. We               A: every single strategy that Cog-
        cember 31, 2008.                         have sound educational infrastruc-         nizant has adopted to date is a result
                                                 ture to support the growth needs of        of asking one question: “Is it in the
            Cognizant has set a new trend in     the IT industry. In fact, given the mar-   best interest of our customers?” We
        IT Infrastructure Services (ITIS) out-   ket conditions, there is more supply       are known for our customer-centric
        sourcing. The company was recently       than demand. I do not see any imme-        strategies, such as having the bulk
        named a “Leader” in “The Forrester       diate challenges to sustaining India’s     of our executive management and
        Wave: Global IT Infrastructure Out-      pricing or manpower advantages.            practice leaders closer to custom-
        sourcing, Q1 2009” by Paul Roehrig.                                                 ers for faster decision-making and
                                                     Q: What are the main countries         high levels of responsiveness; align-
        Cognizant is also evaluated as one
                                                 that are contributing to the growth of     ing ourselves along the industries of
        among the best at managing external
                                                 the segment?                               specialization to provide solutions to
        margin expectations to allow pricing
        flexibility and internal investment.         A: During the quarter, almost 80       customer business problems and not
            The company reported revenue         percent of revenue came from clients       just technical capabilities; reinvest-
        of US$753.0 million for the fourth       in North America. europe accounted         ing significantly back into the busi-
        quarter of 2008, up 2.5 percent from     for approximately 18 percent of to-        ness for enhanced customer value,
        $734.7 million in the third quarter of   tal revenue. Just over 2 percent of        and providing an integrated value
        2008, and up 26 percent from $600.0
        million in the fourth quarter of 2007.
            R. Chandrasekaran, president and
        managing director, Cognizant, shares
                                                 India enjoys an edge, thanks to the scalability, ma-
        his perspective on Indian IT and ITeS
        industry.
                                                 turity and flexibility it offers. It is important to build
            Question: What is the outlook of     upon this lead by focusing more on value than cost.
        the Indian IT and ITeS segment?
                                                 as indicated by some studies, the cost-differential
            Answer: Offshoring has not lost
        any of its sheen and, under current      between the united states and India will continue
        market conditions, it is an even more
        attractive proposition. In the current   for many years to come.
        circumstances, the pressure on com-




AP-1.indd 36                                                                                                                         6/5/09 10:57:37 AM
               to our customers combining
               consulting, technology and
               business process capabili-
               ties. This obsessive focus on
               building stronger customer
               businesses has resulted in
               trusted relationships with
               our customers. This is mani-
               fest in Cognizant’s repeat
               business consistently being
               over 90 percent.
                    Cognizant’s      business
               model has been built around
               the immediate and long-
               term needs of our custom-
               ers. Over the course of our
               history, we have driven rev-
               enue growth by staying close
               to our customers. Three of
               the most important ingre-
               dients for success in this
               market are industry insight,
               domain knowledge and rela-
               tionship management – all
               three of which play directly
               to our strengths. In the cur-
               rent economy, Cognizant has
               strengthened its position as a
               partner of choice for its cus-
               tomers by virtue of our un-
               swerving commitment to the
               industry we serve, standing
               out as thought leaders; our
               proven ability to bring to our
               customer base new services;
               demonstrated expertise and
               insight to help clients navi-
               gate the rough economy; and
               strong corporate governance
               controls.
                    We believe that client en-
               gagement is of fundamental
               importance. Therefore we
               are heavily focused on rela-
               tionship management. To
               this end, we have over 750
               account managers and client
               partners. This strategy of in-                      R. chandrasekaran, president and Managing Director, cognizant
               vesting in front-led client re-
               lationships has proven itself.
               Rather than pulling back                   addresses three key challenges in           nology transition, our business mod-
               during the downturn, we continue           our industry – getting the best tal-        el has stood the test of time, as we
               to invest in the interest of our clients   ent, the best practices and the best        have demonstrated yet again in the
               to be there for them. We continue to       knowledge, all delivered seamlessly         first quarter of 2009.
               invest in our business to ensure that      and instantly to any client situation,          Q: Which are the main industry
               we build capabilities that differenti-     regardless of where the clients or the      verticals that are contributing to the
               ate us. In times of economic crisis,       consultants are located around the          growth of the segment?
               it is more important than ever that        world. This new platform has led to
               we stay the course. In fact, because                                                       A: During the first quarter of cal-
                                                          a truly global delivery model, height-      endar year 2009, our Financial Ser-
               of our strategy of re-investing in the     ened levels of collaboration across the
               business, we have been able to invest                                                  vices segment, which includes our
                                                          world, increased quality, productivity      practices in insurance, banking and
               tens of millions of dollars into the       and efficiency, better quality of work,
               development and acquisition of ad-                                                     transaction processing represented
                                                          and enhanced employee engagement            44.4 percent of revenue; healthcare
               ditional value for our clients.
                                                          and customer satisfaction.                  represented 25.4 percent of reve-
                    We have invested in Cognizant
                                                              The reinvestments we made dur-          nues; retail/manufacturing and logis-
               2.0, an online, virtual workspace that
                                                          ing the 2001-2002 recession played          tics represented 16.5 percent of reve-
               has improved our operations signifi-
                                                          a major part in fueling the unprec-         nues; and the remaining 13.7 percent
               cantly and underpins the strength of
                                                          edented industry-leading growth             of our revenues came primarily from
               our global delivery model. This new
               platform, which over 50,000 of our         for Cognizant beginning in 2003.            other service-oriented industries of
               employees are now actively using,          Through ups and downs in the econ-          communications, media and high
                                                          omy, through several waves of tech-         technology. During the quarter, our




AP-1.indd 37                                                                                                                          6/5/09 10:57:38 AM
         this is not a time of just “cyclical change” resulting from an economic
        slowdown. this is also a time of “secular change” where many of our cli-
        ents are now realizing that their businesses and supporting technology en-
        vironments have to be rethought and changed dramatically in order to navi-
        gate through this period. these types of client changes are driving changes
        within our own industry.


        financial services segment grew 13        have allowed us to help our clients          ic to each client. Therefore we have
        percent compared to Q1 of 2008 [year      adapt more easily to industry trends,        found that this recession is in effect
        over year]. healthcare increased 19       enhancing their operations and effi-         highlighting Cognizant’s strength in
        percent year-over-year. Retail, manu-     ciency.                                      industry insight, domain knowledge,
        facturing and logistics was up 26             Q: What are the main trends in           and relationship management, three
        percent compared to Q1 of 2008. Our       the IT and ITeS segments?                    of the most important ingredients for
        “Other” segment increased 9 percent                                                    success in this market.
        year-over-year.                               A: The majority of our client bud-
                                                                                                   As clients increasingly globalize
            Although discretionary decisions      gets have been finalized. This process
                                                  has taken longer than it has in prior        their businesses, they need a global
        are taking longer to be made in the                                                    firm with infrastructure around the
        current environment, the need for         years and many budgets are flat or
                                                  down. however, spending has not              world to help them. This is being
        services such as Application Main-                                                     driven on the supply side by the con-
        tenance, IT Infrastructure Services,      altogether disappeared. While our
                                                  clients are continuing to spend in           tinued focus of firms to find the best
        BPO/KPO, and other services that                                                       talent for an ever-increasing range of
        are focused on cost containment has       offshore services, given the environ-
                                                  ment, they are doing so more careful-        services such as IT infrastructure ser-
        never been stronger. Our service lines                                                 vices and business process outsourc-
        are continuing to expand and we see       ly. We believe that there are opportu-
                                                  nities for us and we are investing and       ing regardless of where that talent is
        momentum in business process out-
                                                  adapting to ensure that we can seize         based in the world. This has evolved a
        sourcing and Cognizant business con-
                                                  these opportunities.                         delivery model from a point-to-point
        sulting. A testament to the value of
                                                      There are significant changes un-        model to a many-to-many model,
        our reinvestment in service lines is
                                                  derway within our industry and these         where we are often being called to
        our being named a leader in global in-
                                                  changes are primarily driven by sig-         deliver from many locations in the
        frastructure outsourcing for Forrester
        recently. Cognizant IT infrastructure     nificant changes that our clients are        world to client locations in many oth-
        services received the highest possible    facing in their industries. This is not      er parts of the world.
        scores for client feedback on service     a time of just “cyclical change” re-             Finally, given the extraordinary
        quality, customer value proposition       sulting from an economic slowdown.           sets of issues that clients face today,
        and vision and investment to support      This is also a time of “secular change”      they need partners who not only un-
        our growth strategy.                      where many of our clients are now            derstand the issues they face, but also
            Our Cognizant Business Consult-       realizing that their businesses and          how to make changes in the context
        ing or CBC practice has continued         supporting technology environments           of their businesses and their indus-
        to expand over the years and has be-      have to be rethought and changed             try. The partners that can do this
        come a key component of our strate-       dramatically in order to navigate            are the ones that have great client
        gic agenda. We realized early on that     through this period. These types of          relationships, higher attention rates
        providing great offshore capabilities     client changes are driving changes           and the strongest likelihood of con-
        was not enough and that we needed         within our own industry.                     tinued growth. Client intimacy in our
        high level business expertise com-            The traditional areas, which the         business has perhaps never been so
        bined with deep technical experience      offshore industry has considered key         important and relevant. We believe
        to properly serve the demands of our      differentiation, are no longer dif-          that Cognizant is well positioned to
        client base. As part of this effort, we   ferentiators. To be clear, traditional       help clients when viewed against this
        have made a number of strategic hires     global offshore excellence is more           backdrop.
        to fill key leadership roles in the CBC   necessary than ever, but it’s no longer
                                                                                                   Q: Do the new policies of the U.S.
        team. Our vision is to move beyond        sufficient. To clients, this is just table
                                                                                               affect the IT and ITeS markets? how?
        the technology or delivery role and       stakes, an entry point into the game.
        position Cognizant as a transforma-       What clients are really looking for              A: We are still looking at the
        tional partner who can drive power-       and where Cognizant provides signifi-        proposals. We would have to keep
        ful thought leadership. We currently      cant value is in “re-architecting client     in mind that any impact of this po-
        have over 1,700 consultants and their     business models and technology foot-         tential change will be significant for
        technical expertise combined with         prints” to reduce costs and to address       all U.S. multinationals with global
        their industry knowledge has led to       the changes in their industries.             operations. In fact, with extreme in-
        a powerful combination where the              Clients are looking for services         terpretation, it could possibly make
        pillars of business operations and IT     firms that have deep domain exper-           the U.S. multinationals, in general,
        align. We believe that our integra-       tise, strong onsite presence and well-       far less competitive than their global
        tion of consulting within our global      honed relationship management                counterparts and I don’t think this
        delivery model will be a true differ-     skills so they can customize and             would be in the interest of the U.S.
        entiator for us. These investments        implement tailored solutions specif-         companies.




AP-1.indd 38                                                                                                                             6/5/09 10:57:39 AM
                                                                                                                           inteRview           39



                                  n.K. goyal, CmaI
           Following is an interview              a boost to the economy, but with the     of the low penetration of telecom, in-
        with Mr. N.K. Goyal, president            assistance of ICT, all other sectors     ternet, etc., whereas in Korea the pen-
                                                  would also get a push.                   etration is already high. It is expected,
        of the Communications and                                                          that, with the demand picking up in
                                                      Q: What is the state of the trade
        Manufacturing      Association            balance between Korea and India and      Asian markets, the economy of Korea
        of India (CMAI), the subconti-            what do you predict for the near and     would also grow.
        nent’s leading trade promo-               distant future?                              Q: There has been talk of recreat-
        tion organization.                            A: Gross trade between India         ing the “Silk Road” for the 21st centu-
                                                  and Korea has crossed the US$15 bil-     ry. Can you explain what that means
            Question: With a population of
                                                  lion mark and is growing. More than      for the countries located along that
        over 1 billion, India has one of the
                                                  150,000 people from each country         fabled route today?
        largest labor pools to draw from. how
        has that labor pool changed in recent     have visited the other. We hope this         A: The Silk Road was very good
        years to make it more attractive to       figure will rise more than 8 percent     for initiating business in the earlier
        Korea and other IT powerhouses?           in the coming years.                     days. however, now, it is more of a
                                                      Q: Is the government of India        historical and sentimental feeling
            Answer: earlier, India was only
                                                  making efforts to make it easier for     rather than actual usage, because the
        known for cheap labor, but now In-
                                                  foreign companies to operate and in-     goods can be moved much faster by
        dia is one of the largest producers of
                                                  vest in India?                           air cargo, etc. however, it would be in
        technically qualified engineers. The
                                                                                           the best interest of both countries to
        Indian expertise for BPO/KPO/ R&D is          A: Yes. Already 100 percent FDI is
                                                                                           ease restrictions on the movement of
        well known. India has a large pool of     permitted in the manufacturing sec-
                                                                                           persons from both sides and relax visa
        engineers and professionals available     tor without any license required for
                                                                                           regulations. There is also a very good
        to Korea for the IT/Telecom sector for    the ICT sector. In respect to telecom
                                                                                           scope between Korea and India for
        research & development, manufactur-       services, FDI up to 74 percent is al-
                                                                                           the promotion of health and medical
        ing and services. CMAI has been play-     lowed. The approval process has also
                                                                                           tourism and education promotion. It
        ing an active role in promoting hRD       been liberalized.
                                                                                           can work both ways because of excel-
        activities between Korea and India.           Q: India and Korea both are lead-    lent facilities in both the countries.
            Q: What can Korea offer India and     ers in various labor and materials-
                                                                                               Q: Your organization represents
        vice-versa?                               intensive industries, such as steel
                                                                                           many of the biggest tech firms in In-
            A: Korea is well known for broad-     making and shipbuilding. As these
                                                                                           dia. From your communication with
        band with the highest penetration         industries become more technology
                                                                                           CeOs and other decision makers,
        rate for faster than 10MBPS speed,        intensive, will this lead to more com-
                                                                                           is Korea currently on their radar in
        whereas India is lagging behind.          petition or cooperation between the
                                                                                           terms of expansion, cooperation and
        hence, there is very good scope for       two nations?
                                                                                           investment?
        Korean companies dealing in broad-            A: We do not think there is any
                                                                                               A: Yes. Korea is high on the radar
        band to come to India. India is also      need to worry for competition, be-
                                                                                           of almost all the companies. CMAI ar-
        opening up 3G, Wimax and broad-           cause of the huge market in the
                                                                                           ranges B2B meetings and takes part
        band wireless, hence this represents      world. Moreover, even as of now, Ko-
                                                                                           in international exhibitions and trade
        other emerging opportunities. India       rea and India are not competing but
                                                                                           shows in India and Korea on a regular
        is adding over 15 million wireless        are complimenting each other.
                                                                                           basis.
        phones per months. That means a               Q: In recent years, India has seen
        huge market for wireless equipment,       economic growth rates exceeding 8
        handsets, VAS, etc. CMAI has been ar-     percent, while Korea’s growth rate            N.K. Goyal is a founding member and chair-
        ranging B2B meetings in this regard                                                man emeritus of thez Telecom equipment manu-
                                                  seemed to peak around 5 percent and      facturers Association of India (TemA); serves on
        in India.                                 has been in decline for the past four    the Council of electronic Hardware Association
            Q: During the current economic        years. What are some things that Ko-     of India TemA export Promotion Council, Govt.
        crisis, what is the impetus for the IT    rea can learn from India? Or are the     of India; and is senior vice president of the Hi-
        sectors of the two countries to work      two countries at completely different    machal Pradesh Chamber of Commerce and In-
        closer together?                          levels in terms of economic matu-        dustries.
            A: Not only for India and Korea,      rity?
        but throughout the world everybody            A: The growth of India’s GDP is
        is banking upon the ICT sector to re-     attributable to a huge market and a
        vive the entire economy. It is not only   comparatively tight banking system.
        the ICT sector itself, which will give    The huge market is present because




AP-1.indd 39                                                                                                                                   6/5/09 10:57:39 AM
        40         touRisM




        Visit Korea Incheon 2009
        Reprinted with permission from
        the KoReA IT TImes




        T
                     his   year    is
                     Visit Korea In-
                     cheon     2009.
                     Incheon’s city
                     government
                     has     focused
        on creating sightseeing
        programs and building
        sightseeing infrastructure.
        For these, the city govern-
        ment, the Incheon Tour-
        ism Organization, and the
        committee managing the                                A scene from boys over Flowers on palmi island. — Korea IT Times
        event finished their over-
        all preparations. First they
        selected a symbol with
        three colors: yellow, blue,                 the heroine confessed her love to the hero first
        and red. This trinity stands                and kissed him on fairy rock Beach, in eurwangni.
        for Global Incheon. Yellow
        symbolizes the hope, blue                   also, they took their last trip to Incheon at silmido,
        shows the dreams and red                    Jamjindo and eurwangni.
        signifies the passion of In-
        cheon. Then, they selected
        a slogan: Come together,                    emptiness.In July, Incheon recom-          ginning of the Sorae Wharf Festival.
        Fly Incheon. Through the                    mends a paradise – Ongjin. You can         You can see and smell the ocean,
                                                    enjoy not only swimming, but also          and the foreshore is filled with vari-
        slogan they expressed their                 fishing in the sea and catching clams      ous creatures which can help to re-
        hope to see a rapidly-rising                along the shore.                           energize yourself. In November, the
        Incheon.                                        In August, through the Global          everlasting theme of Wolmi Island
                                                    Fair & Festival 2009, Songdo will          is romance. You can find out why
                                                    reveal itself to the world. The fair       while you are walking through the
        Various hot spots                           is scheduled to run from August to         picturesque streets with your loved
            Palmido (Palmi Island) has re-          October. It will entertain visitors by     one. In December, Seokmo Island
        opened its lighthouse, which has            providing 65 programs. In particular,      has the greatest sunsets, painting
        been there for 100 years, and an            Global Culture Street is very unique       all things red – the sky, the sea and
        esplanade. If you like jajangmyeon,         – it’s the perfect setting for visitors    you. It will be a good way to finish
        Chinatown has good restaurants.             to create an unforgettable memory.         the year and to reflect upon your-
        You can have some excellent jajang-         You will notice that Songdo has two        self.
        myeon and create a great memory.            looks: the global city and the future
        Baeknyeong Island is also wonder-           city.                                      Boys over flowers
        ful. You can feel the beauty of nature          In September, Korea’s longest              The famous Korean TV series Boys
        in the rock cliffs of the Dumujin and       bridge – and the fifth longest in the      Over Flowers was shot in Incheon.
        the sandy Sogot Coast.                      world – will open for the first time.      The Incheon Tourism Organization
            In June, it is a perfect time to stay   There will be lots of events celebrat-     attracted the series to inform people
        at a temple. The temple stays allow         ing the completion of the construc-        of various showplaces. This famous
        you to feel the value of slowness and       tion work. October marks the be-           series chose Palmido, Songdo and




AP-1.indd 40                                                                                                                            6/5/09 10:57:40 AM
                            A bird’s-eye view of the main plaza of the global Fair and Festival 2009 incheon, Korea. — Korea IT Times




               Muuido as its background because
               these spots beautified the scenes and
               gave the ending an incredible look.        In august, through the global fair & festival 2009,
                   The last scenes of the series
               showed the beautiful islands and sea       songdo will reveal itself to the world. the fair is
               of Incheon together. Through this
               opportunity, Incheon showed off its        scheduled to run from august to october. It will en-
               charm to the whole nation.
                   The heroine confessed her love
                                                          tertain visitors by providing 65 programs. In partic-
               to the hero first and kissed him on        ular, global Culture street is very unique – it’s the
               Fairy Rock Beach, in eurwangni.
               Also, they took their last trip to In-     perfect setting for visitors to create an unforget-
               cheon at Silmido, Jamjindo and eur-
               wangni.                                    table memory. You will notice that songdo has two
                   The committee plans to use the se-
               ries to inform people about Incheon,
                                                          looks: the global city and the future city.
               and has uploaded information and
               photos about the film locations to its
               homepage. In addition, the commit-
               tee is developing many sources for         can check the schedule and make a              reopened recently; Incheon Bridge,
               sightseeing and attracting tourists        reservation on Korail Tourservice’s            which is the longest in Korea at
               both foreign and domestic.                 website www.korailtours.com. It                21.27 kilometers, and the fifth-
                                                          costs 35,000 won (US$26.13) per per-           longest in the world; and Incheon
               railroad travel                            son.                                           Complex Fish Market. The Incheon
                   The Incheon Tourism Organiza-              Moreover, the package deal called          Complex Fish Market has cheap and
               tion created programs to let people        “Do you know Incheon?” is divided              fresh fish and generous traders. It
               enjoy the showplaces of Incheon on         into two parts. First, you can see Ko-         is the best spot to enjoy gourmet
               the Korea Railroad for Visit Korea         rean modern history. Incheon was               seafood dishes for a sensitive wal-
               Incheon 2009 and the Global Fair &         an open port for accepting modern              let with your family, friends or your
               Festival.                                  civilization from foreign countries.           significant other.
                   First, the Love Story Starlight        It was the main stage in Korea’s ear-              This package is sponsored by the
               Train is a package deal. The train         ly modern era. There is Chinatown,             Incheon City Government. You can
               starts from Seoul Station and goes to      Jayu Park and modern architecture.             enjoy the package at a cheap price:
               Incheon Station, and then stays for        You can tour around this area with             19,900 won (US$14.87) per adult, and
               one hour in Chinatown. Before this         Cultural heritage Interpreters. Then           14,900 won (US$11.13) per child. It
               tour, the railroad trip was a little       you can rediscover Incheon as Korea’s          will be offered until late December
               boring, but this tour is different. It     first city of modern civilization.             of this year. Trains operate every
               makes up for the weakness by serv-             Second, Incheon is the near-               weekend.
               ing wine, music by a DJ and live per-      est port to the Seoul metropolitan                 You can make a reservation at the
               formances. Responses from 20-some-         area. You don’t need to go far away            Seoul Metropolitan West Office of the
               things and 30-somethings have been         from Seoul to feel the atmosphere              Korea Railroad (02-2634-2401), Train
               very good. The package will be sold        of a port. There is Korea’s earliest           Tour (02-1577-7788, www.114ktx.
               until late September this year and         lighthouse on Palmi Island, which              co.kr and hongik Tour (02-717-1002,
               trains will operate just 31 times. You     was locked for 106 years and was               www,ktxtour.co.kr.




AP-1.indd 41                                                                                                                            6/5/09 10:57:40 AM
        42        tRAvel




        old Kunming
        BY JOSh FOReMAN                                                                          Rooms have been renovated recently




        K
                                                                                                 and, for a little over $10 a night, of-
                                                                                                 fer sophisticated accommodation. The
                      U N M I N G ,                                                              bargain is beset, however, by a lacka-
                      China — Two                                                                daisical staff that often bungles orders
                      lovebirds in a                                                             for food and drinks and seems strange-
                                                                                                 ly obsessed with collecting deposits
                      wooden cage.                                                               for minor services and items (towel?
                      A dozen turtles                                                            Deposit please.)
                      in a blue plastic                                                              Kunming is a big city, but its old
                                                                                                 heart is still best explored by foot.
        box. hundreds of black bee-
        tles eating watermelon rind.




                                                                                                 S
        Thousands of mealworms                                                                   the Wonderful
        squirming – food for the love-                                                                      HANGRI         LA,
        birds.These animals share                                                                           China – To stroll
        space with thousands of oth-                                                                        the    Wonderful
        ers here in Old Kunming. Any                                                                        Supermarket
        can be had for a price. But                                                                         here is to marvel
        strange animals are not the                strip sell grilled tofu (soft and moist in-
                                                                                                            at the ability of
        only things for sale in this               side at first – hard and chewy after too      the Chinese to turn nearly
        crumbling quarter of South-
                                                   long on the grill), fried new potatoes,       any foodstuff into a powder,
                                                   mushrooms, soup and tall Dali beers.
        western China’s largest city.                   Da Wood and his family came from
                                                                                                 a dehydrated bit or a biscuit.
                                                   Ili in Xinjiang, a largely Muslim region      Walk into the supermarket
            The historic area was once
        called the “Bird and Flower Market.”
                                                   of northwestern China. Other restau-          from the dusty main avenue
                                                   rants around Kunming bear signs writ-
        Now shoppers browse Nintendos,             ten in the Arabic letters of the Uyghur.
                                                                                                 of this mountain town and
        nunchucks and fishing tackle – along       hundreds of years ago the city was            behold the specials for the
        with birds and flowers. It’s also a good
        place to taste Kunming’s spicy street
                                                   linked to Muslim central Asia by the          week: soybean oil, candied
                                                   Silk Road.
        food. In Kunming, street meals are              Kunming has a mild climate year-
                                                                                                 peanuts, peach cakes. Sounds
        cheap and best enjoyed in skewer           round, and spring is a good time to           mundane, but delve deeper
        form. Fatty beef is popular, thin crispy
        fish delectable, and obscure chicken
                                                   stroll Green Lake Park, a sprawling,          into the cavernous store and
                                                   wooded park with interconnecting
        parts plentiful.                           lakes and lots of old folks. Men sit un-
                                                                                                 behold the uniquely Chinese
            The food area of the market is a       der willow trees in the park and chat.        snacks and staples stacked
        series of tents. each tent serves some-
        thing different – one sells drinks and
                                                   Spotted brown birds bought in the old         floor to ceiling, aisle after
                                                   market sit in bamboo cages, serenad-
        soup, another grilled meat, and anoth-     ing the old men with squawks.
                                                                                                 aisle, many with grammati-
        er fried potatoes and tofu.                     March is berry season in Kunming,        cally bewildering names and
            In one of the tent restaurants bear-
        ing a gold sign marked “Moslem,” Mu-
                                                   and hawkers can be found through-             slogans.
                                                   out the alleys of the Old City selling
        hammad Da Wood and his family grill        blackberries, strawberries and haws –             First, past the dour, red-cloaked
        fish and meat. A nylon sign that takes     a soft, sweet fruit about the size of a       checkers, there’s the tea and mush-
        up the back wall of the restaurant         crabapple.                                    room section. It’s a dry indicator of
        shows two yaks and three ostriches              In more recent history, Kunming          what’s to come. There are mounds
        grazing in a green field, but those ani-   was the launching point for U.S. pi-          of jasmine buds and paper-wrapped
        mals cannot be found on Da Wood’s          lots flying supplies over the himalayas       discs of different teas. There are mush-
        menu. Instead he grills fatty cubes of     to India. They called the route “The          rooms of every description – phallic
        beef and whole skewered fish. When         hump,” and references to that era of          mushrooms, tiny disc mushrooms, gi-
        the beef cubes are finished, they’re       aviation abound.                              ant dusty mushrooms, mushrooms so
        tender and rich. The fish turn out              The city’s most popular hostel –         old and dry that they clank when you
        crispy and blackened, with oily dark       also called The hump – is vast, cheap,        bump them together. everything has
        meat inside. All items are, of course,     and centrally located. The walls are          been dried severely and displayed with
        covered with chili pepper powder.          decked with old black and white pho-          pride in jars and piles.
            Other tent restaurants along the       tos of pilots, planes and the old city.           After the mushrooms come the




AP-1.indd 42                                                                                                                                6/5/09 10:57:45 AM
               ever want to drink grog from something more exciting than a glass? how about
               a gold, coin-covered deer? the Wonderful can accommodate, and throw in a
               booze-filled leopard to boot. then of course, there’s the alcoholic glass cab-
               bage, the fish and the leapfrogging crocodiles.

               beauty products, where shoppers can       nourishment meal), milk powder with         anges and brown pears – huddled as if
               grab Flexibility Cream, Tendering         vitamins (“It has very good smell and       ashamed of their unprocessed nudity.
               Cleanser or Removing Masks. And on        taste”). You can pick up oatmeal in the         Last, but perhaps most hearty, is
               to the booze.                             powder section, too. It’s nutritious –      the meat section (as the “fresh” meat
                   ever want to drink grog from          just ask its spokesman, a deranged fat      section is so small as to be negligible,
               something more exciting than a glass?     man in a kaftan.                            I will refer to the cornucopian canned
               how about a gold, coin-covered deer?           Throughout the Wonderful there         and shrink-wrapped meat section as
               The Wonderful can accommodate,            are scattered snacks, some of the most      the “meat section”). Red and white
               and throw in a booze-filled leopard to    interesting morsels here. Peckish?          chicken feet share space with whole
               boot. Then of course, there’s the alco-   Grab a box of Fragrant Fragile Walnut       bagged ducks, roast yak bites and cans
               holic glass cabbage, the fish and the     Meat Biscuits or a bag of Golden Mon-       of suspiciously goldfish-like anchovies,
               leapfrogging crocodiles.                  key Milk Candy, which entices with          Pork Luncheon Meat (“So delicious!”)
                   The supermarket has a selection of    its imaginative slogan: “Mylikes from       and Beef Meat in Jelly. Included in the
               local wines too – Rare Wine (“a present   Anglicism.” There are Shallot King Bis-     meat section are the protein-rich le-
               first choice good taste”), Naked Wine,    cuits, Scallion Pancakes (with scallion     gumes, king of which is the Strange-
               even enduring Pulchitude Wine.            crash) and Chum bars. And of course,        Taste horsebean.
                   Past the spirits begins one of the    what snack section would be complete            If you’ve filled your cart with dried
               supermarket’s most intimidating           without Wife Cakes?                         and packaged delectables and still
               realms. On the shelves of the vast             Toward the back of the store the       have room for a sweet, pick up an ice-
               powder section sit bags and cans of       impressive dehydrated fruit section         cream bar. The flavors are sundry and
               normally whole foods – walnuts, soy-      gloats within sight of its inferior cous-   tempting: corn, peas, sesame seed.
               beans, milk – all pulverized and ren-     in – the fresh fruit. Whereas the de-           Then proceed to checkout. The red-
               dered into meek powder.                   hydrated fruit section overflows with       cloaked cashiers will dutifully drop
                   Walnut powder dominates, but          angular bites of haw, pineapple and         your haul into plastic nets and count
               there are plenty of others: soybean       mango and plums of every sort, the          out Mao-covered notes. The name of
               powder, lotus root powder, nourish-       fresh fruit section is a lonely corner      the place is Wonderful, and for some,
               ment powder (not to be confused with      sparsely populated by wrinkled or-          maybe it is.




AP-1.indd 43                                                                                                                           6/5/09 10:57:49 AM
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AP-1.indd 45                 6/5/09 10:57:59 AM
       46                                                 the lAst woRD

       the death of phone manners
       BY TRACeY STARK                                                                                  As you can see, these rules were




       I
                                                                                                    straightforward and didn’t require any
                                                                                                    great sacrifices. But now we jump ahead
               found a seat on the                                                                  20 years and my mother would have had
               subway and within                                                                    to make a list two or three pages long.
               seconds a middle-aged                                                                    What follows is the short version of
                                                                                                    what she would have demanded of us.
               man sat next to me                                                                       Keep your phone on silent at all
               and began sending text                                                               times. NOBODY wants to hear your Ce-
               messages. Or maybe he                                                                line Dion ringtone.
                                                                                                        Keep your touchpad on silent as
       was playing a video game. All                                                                well. NOBODY wants to hear you send-
       I know is that I could hear eV-                                                              ing messages or dialing numbers.
       eRYThING he was doing and                                                                        Do not take pictures of yourself
                                                                                                    while enjoying a coffee at Starbucks.
       it was terribly annoying. Beep,                                                              Vanity is a very unattractive trait. In fact,
       boop, beep, beep, boop…                                                                      don’t use the camera on your phone in
                                                                                                    public at all. For Koreans: Do not stop to
           I gave him the death stare. he didn’t                                                    take pictures of foreigners on the street.
       notice. I coughed a few times and leaned                                                     ever. It is NOT okay.
       closer. he still didn’t budge.                                                                   Do not sing out loud in crowded,
           Didn’t this guy understand that                                                          public places when listening to mu-
       what he was doing was, well, rude?                 Before I call anyone out on bad man-
                                                                                                    sic on your phone/MP3 player. Nobody
       Couldn’t he FeeL the irritation of the         ners, I must first admit that I have been
                                                                                                    wants to hear your version of 50 Cent,
       people around him? No, in fact, he             guilty of one or more of these offenses
                                                                                                    the Wonder Girls or Celine Dion. NO-
       couldn’t. And the reason is simple: his        as recently as yesterday. But I am work-
                                                                                                    BODY.
       mother didn’t know she would have              ing on it. I swear.
                                                                                                        If the phone rings while dining in
       to teach him these particular manners              In the ‘70s when I was a small child,
                                                                                                    public, answer it, say you are eating and
       since this technology didn’t exist when        we had one telephone mounted on the
                                                                                                    will call the person back, then make
       he was a kid.                                  wall in the kitchen. There were strict,
                                                                                                    sure it is on silent. NOBODY wants to
           In the early days of communication,        but simple rules regarding its use:
                                                                                                    hear you talk about how much of a dick
       the rules of conduct were simple. Since            Calls were limited to 10 minutes,         your hagwan director is while they are
       the phone was generally confined to a          since call waiting wasn’t invented yet.       trying to enjoy themselves.
       wall at home, the office or the phone          That way, my mother said, if one of our           If you are playing a video game on
       booth it was straightforward. Walkie-          relatives died, we would be able to find      your phone/MP3 player/PMP, wear head-
       talkies were used by the military or           out.                                          phones or keep it on silent. NOBODY
       cops. Video signals were confined to               If the phone rang while the family        wants to hear you blasting away at some
       that enormous television set in the liv-       was at the dinner table, we were forbid-      evil alien invader.
       ing room. And cameras were pulled out          den to answer it. Not an easy feat with           When using a hands-free device,
       on vacations or special occasions. (NOT        five kids ranging in age from 8 to 18.        wear it so people can see that you are
       a trip to the mall.)                               After 10 p.m., no more phone calls.       actually talking to someone and not just
           eventually, the wall phone gave way        Period.                                       chatting up yourself. It is important to
       to the cordless phone, walkie-talkies              In the ‘80s, the rules changed slight-    not look like a crazy person when walk-
       gave way – in a sense – to the pager           ly. We moved to a new place, there were       ing down the street.
       (‘beeper’ to you older folks) and every-       only two kids left at home and we now             If all you are going to say into your
       thing James Bond and the guys from             had three phones, one of which was            phone is “Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah…uh,
       Star Trek were carrying started to look        cordless.                                     uh, uh…nay,” please hang up. You obvi-
       more and more likely to eventually end             If call waiting beeps, you must an-       ously have nothing to say and just want
       up in our pockets.                             swer it. This is because caller I.D. wasn’t   attention. NOBODY wants to give you
           Today’s communication equipment            widely available. Again, the possibility      the positive kind of attention you obvi-
       rolls all of that stuff into one tiny little   of a dead relative and my mother’s de-        ously crave.
       annoyingly convenient package. And             sire not to miss the news.                        My mother would have gone into
       with it comes all of the problems that             If the phone rang while we were at        greater detail and it would be a con-
       those more primitive technologies pre-         the dinner table, it usually meant some-      stantly evolving list as the technology
       sented, except 10 times as bad.                one was calling to get us to change our       changes, but I think it’s a good start-
           The result? A new generation of peo-       long distance provider. Rock, paper,          ing point. Please share these rules with
       ple who can no longer communicate ef-          scissors to decide who answers it.            your friends and total strangers. And if
       fectively face to face, can hardly spell           If you were on the phone after 10         you text them, keep your keypad on si-
       and don’t care if the rest of the world        p.m., you must use the cordless and go        lent. Thank you and I’ll call you back
       wants them to shut the hell up.                into your room.                               when I’m done peeing.




AP-1.indd 46                                                                                                                                6/5/09 10:58:06 AM
AP-1.indd 47   6/5/09 10:58:08 AM
AP-1.indd 48   6/5/09 10:58:34 AM

								
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