Lessons Lessons JOSHY MANJUMMEL by tyndale

VIEWS: 45 PAGES: 2

									                                                      Lessons
JOSHY MANJUMMEL       COVER STORY




                        Kochi is on move, adding a regular impetus on Kerala
                        Kochi is on move, adding a regular impetus on Kerala
                        economy. In IT, Biotechnology,
                        economy. In IT, Biotechnology,
                        Industry and Trade, Kochi is fast changing.
                        Industry and Trade, Kochi is fast changing.
                        The hitherto static economic growth of Kerala is past.
                        The hitherto static economic growth of Kerala is past.
                        ‘Ruin, if not grow’ thinking among people and our
                        ‘Ruin, if not grow’ thinking among people and our
                        leaders is gradually showing positive signs.
                        leaders is gradually showing positive signs.
                        More than a dozen major projects, which are espected
                        More than a dozen major projects, which are espected
                        to rewrite the destiny of Kerala, are on the roll.
                        to rewrite the destiny of Kerala, are on the roll.
                        But Kerala is a tiny state.
                        But Kerala is a tiny state.
                        Why Kochi alone grow?
                        Why Kochi alone grow?
                        Why Kochi phenomena are
                        not spreading whole Kerala?
                        Kerala Calling looks into the issue:
                        Kerala Calling looks into the issue:




                  6                                                    October 2004   KERALA CALLING
from Kochi
K G Kumar
                                                to be as adequately connected to the          Also, common effluent treatment Plants


I
     n the generally lacklustre industrial      outside world through sea, air and road       are being installed and roads, ducts and
     landscape of Kerala, the city of Kochi     as Kochi, thanks to the availability of 15    drains are being renewed.
     stands out as a shining exception to       Gbps bandwidth, through undersea                  Yet, infrastructure by itself is not
the rule of entrepreneurial lethargy often      cables such as FLAG, SAFE and                 sufficient for a place to be industrially
applied to the State. As the commercial         SEAMEWE 3, ensuring seamless data             attractive. As Kotler points out,
capital of Kerala, this port city has           flow. The existence of information            marketplace shifts and changes occur far
notched up several achievements and             technology (IT) parks and business parks      faster than a community’s capacity to react
successes, so much so that it is worthwhile     and the new plan to develop a Special         and respond. Buyers of the goods and
pondering on what lessons it has to offer       Economic Zone also add to Kochi’s             services that a place can offer (i.e.
for the rest of Kerala.                         attraction as an industrial destination,      businesses, firms, tourists, investors,
    Philip Kotler, marketing guru and           especially for IT-enabled services (ITES).    among others) have a decided advantage
professor of business at Northwestern               The Cochin Special Economic Zone          over place sellers (i.e. local communities,
University, US, has done some seminal           (CSEZ), Cochin International Airport          regions, and other places that seek
work on marketing places. Kotler has            Ltd. (CIAL) and Cochin Port Trust (CPT)       economic growth). The challenge of place
analysed how towns, cities, regions and         have drawn up a master plan to set up a       marketing is to strengthen the capacity
nations must learn to think more like           Special Economic Zone (SEZ), with the         of communities and regions to adapt to
businesses, developing products, markets        help of Kinfra park at Kakkanad. This ties    the changing marketplace, seize
and customers.                                  in with Kotler’s prescription for             opportunities, and sustain their vitality.
    “The globalisation of the world’s           promoting small business expansion and            Thus, if Kochi has succeeded in
economy and the accelerating pace of            fostering new business start-ups.             becoming an attractive industrial
technological changes are two forces that           According to Kotler, place marketing,     destination – and hopes to continue to
require all places to learn how to              at is core, embraces four activities -        do so – it should not rest on its laurels.
compete,” says Kotler.                          designing the right mix of community          Place marketing, at its core, says Kotler,
    To do so, communities and regions           features and services, setting attractive     embraces four activities: (1) designing the
must adapt to the changing marketplace,         incentives for the current and potential      right mix of community features and
seize opportunities, and sustain their          buyers and users of its goods and services,   services; (2) setting attractive incentives
vitality. That will happen only when            delivering a place’s products and services    for the current and potential buyers and
stakeholders such as citizens, workers and      in an efficient, accessible way, and          users of its goods and services; (3)
business firms derive satisfaction from         promoting the place’s values and image        delivering a place’s products and services
their community, and when visitors, new         so that potential users are fully aware of    in an efficient, accessible way; and (4)
businesses and investors find that their        the place’s distinctive advantage.            promoting the place’s values and image
expectations are met.                               On the matter of social infrastructure    so that potential users are fully aware of
    These are the standards against which       such as premium housing, education and        the place’s distinctive advantages.
Kochi can be assessed. Specifically, Kotler     recreation facilities, Kochi has recently         Some of Kochi’s institutions, like the
offers six generic strategies for               had some good news with Tata Housing          chambers of commerce, trade bodies,
communities and regions to improve their        drawing up an ambitious project to            exporters’ forums and management
competitive        positions.      Kotler’s     develop 32 acres of land into a satellite     associations, have already done their bit
prescriptions assess a place’s worth in: (1)    township, which will consist of premium       to market the city. But much remains to
attracting tourist and business visitors; (2)   houses (1200 residential units),              be done. Kotler says that a strategic place
attracting businesses from elsewhere; (3)       commercial establishments, shopping           marketing plan should focus on
retaining and expanding existing                malls, a science park and quality hotels,     improving five areas: urban design,
businesses; (4) promoting small business        among other facilities.                       infrastructure, basic services such as fire,
expansion and fostering new business                As a low-cost destination, the CSEZ       police and education, attractions and
start-ups; (5) expanding exports and            offers among the lowest lease rentals both    people. That is what other places in Kerala
outside investments; and (6) expanding          for land and built-up space. CSEZ is          should concentrate on to improve their
the population or changing the mix of           augmenting its built-up space with            images. The key factor, however, is that,
residents.                                      2,50,000 sq. ft through a Rs 33 crore         as Kotler points out, an appropriate and
    On all these counts, Kochi seems to         upgradation programme of the Union            useful image can be created only if it is
far better than most other cities in Kerala.    Commerce Ministry to improve water            valid, believable, simple, distinctive and
In fact, few other Indian cities can claim      supply and modernise power distribution.      has some appeal.

KERALA CALLING         October 2004                                                                                                     7

								
To top