Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax | Walmart's Flipkart has led a $60 million (roughly Rs. 428 crores) financing round in logistics platform Shadowfax as the online retailer looks to expa

Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax

Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax

Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax

Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax

Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax

Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax
Flipkart Leads $60 Million Investment in Logistics Platform Shadowfax
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Walmart's Flipkart has led a $60 million (roughly Rs. 428 crores) financing round in logistics platform Shadowfax as the online retailer looks to expand hyperlocal delivery capabilities.

This investment is part of a Series D funding that Shadowfax has received from Eight Roads Ventures, Nokia Growth Partners, Qualcomm Ventures, Mirae Asset Naver Fund and World Bank-backed IFC.

Flipkart has an existing partnership with Shadowfax to fulfil logistics requirements across various categories in its e-commerce business.

"At Flipkart, we are focused on redefining customer experience, and hyperlocal is a key element to enable this transformation," Kalyan Krishnamurthy, Chief Executive Officer, Flipkart, said in a statement on Thursday.

"We have seen strong synergies with Shadowfax through our existing engagement with them, and their investments in tech-enabled innovations will help us significantly reduce delivery time and provide superior customer experiences across product categories," Krishnamurthy added.

Founded in 2015, Shadowfax currently enables delivery of 10 million monthly shipments across diverse segments ranging from hot food to grocery to fashion, electronics and other e-commerce items.

The company will use the funds to enhance the tech capabilities of the platform, recruit talent, increase the number of shipments to 100 million a month and expand its geographical presence to 1,000 Indian cities, Flipkart said.

"With the new round of capital infusion, Shadowfax plans to invest extensively in building long-term capabilities which are essential to developing an efficient and superior service quality ecosystem in Indian logistics," said Abhishek Bansal, CEO, Shadowfax.

Xiaomi Mi Note 10 could launch in India by January 2020

Xiaomi Mi Note 10 could launch in India by January 2020

Xiaomi's 108MP Penta-camera Mi Note 10 could launch in India by January 2020 with a price of around Rs 40,000. The company has previously teased the launch of a 108MP camera phone in India, and we suspect it to be the Mi Note 10 series, which debuted in China as the Mi CC9 Pro.

Now, Xiaomi recently announced it's Global Photography Challenge 2019 on the Mi India community, and under its Juror's Choice Awards prizes, the company is offering ten Mi Note 10 to winners. Interestingly, the Mi Note 10 is cited as worth Rs 46,832 in the announcement post, which was first spotted by the folks over at 91Mobiles.

The report states that the price of the Mi Note 10, as mentioned in the details of the challenge, is a directly converted price from US dollars. The phone is priced starting at AU$888 in Australia and CNY 2,799 in China, where it retails as the Mi CC9 Pro. We expect Xiaomi to price the Mi Note 10 upwards of the Rs 40,000 mark when it launches it in India.

The winners of the Global Photography Challenge 2019 will be announced on February 5, 2020, and we expect the company to announce the Mi Note 10 around the same time. 

Xiaomi Mi Note 10 will pose to be a direct competitor to the Realme XT 730G which is slated to launch sometime before the end of 2019 with a rumored price of Rs 17,000 for the base variant.

Mi Note 10 specifications

Xiaomi Mi Note 10 series features a glass-metal sandwich design featuring a 6.4-inch Full HD+ (2340 x 1080 pixels) display, which uses an AMOLED panel. The screen has a u-shaped notch cut-out, resulting in a 19.5:9 aspect ratio and also houses the 32MP selfie camera. The display supports DCI-P3 color gamut and can playback HDR10 videos. It is protected with a layer of Gorilla Glass 5, and the fingerprint sensor is embedded within the display.

A Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G processor powers the Mi Note 10 with an octa-core CPU and Adreno 618 GPU paired with up to 8GB RAM and 256GB storage. It runs on MIUI 11 out-of-the-box.

The highlighting feature of the Mi Note 10 is its primary 108MP camera, which uses Samsung's ISOCELL Bright HMX sensor with an f/1.7 aperture backed by PDAF, Laser autofocus, and OIS. The second camera is a 12MP telephoto lens with up to 2x optical zoom followed by a 5MP custom telephoto sensor with 5x optical zoom, a 20MP ultra-wide angle lens with 117-degree field-of-view and a 2MP macro lens.

The phone has a 5,260mAh battery that supports 30W fast charging and USB Power Delivery. Xiaomi claims that the phone can go from 0-58% in 30 minutes and up to 100% in 65 minutes tops.

Survival of the fastest: balancing the business complexity seesaw

Survival of the fastest: balancing the business complexity seesaw

At a time of constant innovation and evolving customer expectations, business agility has never been more important. The enterprises most adaptable to change stand the best chance of thriving. By contrast, those caged by complex and disjointed back office systems are running out of time.

In particular, established companies that have been on the market for more than a decade face real challenges – from silos to legacy systems – that put the brakes on their ability to innovate and remain relevant to customers. A recent study by Oracle and The Confederation of British Industry highlights just how unrelenting undergoing this change can be, with half of the largest FTSE100 companies disappearing from the index since 2009. In short, large enterprises are in serious danger of being left behind.

Companies who can’t move at the speed of their customers and handle relentless change won’t be able to compete in today’s digital marketplace. While they won’t disappear overnight, the outcome will eventually be falling revenue, an intense scrambling to identify deep-seated problems, increasing levels of irrelevance and the inevitable death spiral.

By contrast, the opportunities are vast for companies with the courage to remake themselves around today’s realities and harness the pace of change as a competitive weapon.

The age of confusion

It’s no coincidence that some of the least connected companies suffer the most from complexity. To react to changing customer needs, companies need insight from a multitude of data sources and the ability to act on it quickly.

Evolving is only achievable through a state of hyper-connectivity, where company, customer and supplier data are all easily accessible across the organisation. If the Chief Financial Officer needs insight into employee productivity, they should be able to access the data from HR in seconds. Similarly, a Chief Human Resources Officer looking for information on a new hire’s financial impact should easily be able to draw the data from finance.  

While aspiring to hyper-connectivity is easy, achieving it is the real challenge. The main hurdle for business leaders is the oft-neglected back office. It’s here where some of the most crucial functions, including payroll, HR and supply chain operate. It’s the engine room of the organisation, so when it isn’t running efficiently the entire company stalls. 

To keep pace with change, organisations need to leverage enterprise resource planning to effectively manage, optimise and leverage data across the day-to-day but crucial business functions.  

Automate, integrate, iterate

For business leaders to align, the underlying back office must be integrated and connected. Migrating your various functions to the cloud avoids system fragmentation. Doing so also means you have all the data in one place and a flexible, scalable and secure environment in which to roll out changes. This leads to improved performance, agility and visibility. 

Even then, however, organisational functions like HR and finance still drain time and resources. Simple, repetitive tasks like payment processing will continue to draw your staff away from higher-value tasks. And you won’t change outlooks overnight. Your ability to adapt and change your organisation is still compromised by cultural resistance and long-standing processes.

To overcome this resistance, businesses should look to simplify, standardise and automate with applications embedded with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML). A ML application, for example, can easily auto-approve expenses, flagging those that require further investigation.

A connected, cloud based back office is a strong foundation on which to build these shared processes that run by themselves, more efficiently, and which filter throughout the enterprise.

It’s also crucial that employees, partners and stakeholders drive change. Led from the top and executed from the ground up, there must be an expectation in place that failing isn’t a bad thing. Small companies may have agility, but might not have the established processes in place, while large organisations can have the opposite problem. In order to build the right change culture for your organisation, it’s important to be open to all answers and different models.

United we stand

The impact of connecting data and automating processes across lines of business is transformative. Armed with the correct tools, business leaders can unlock unprecedented insight into operations, leading to increased collaboration, performance and the ability to anticipate change.

This couldn’t come at a better time. Our research found that almost three-quarters of HR and Finance executives struggle to focus on future strategic direction due to a lack of collaboration and too much short-term thinking. With a shared, single source of accurate data, however, business leaders will no longer have to make decisions in the dark.

They’ll also be able to exploit more sophisticated tools. With predictive modelling, for example, organisations can forecast budget and headcount needs, responding early to avoid future crises. AI solutions can also extract insight from vast quantities of third-party data otherwise unavailable to the business. Overall, better, more evidence-based decisions can be made that help grow the business. 

Many organisations are already realising these benefits. Amplifon, the world’s largest hearing aid manufacturer, has been able to improve its customer experience and working practices all while growing its network and customer base. Its cloud-based platform has been the catalyst, spreading common governance models, metrics and KPIs across countries.

Global fashion conglomerate Apparel Group has also innovated through a mix of intelligent cloud applications. By centralising its data in a single source of truth, the brand has gained visibility across its global operations, giving them insight into opportunities with new brands and markets.

Connectivity and complexity are like two ends of a see-saw. When one side goes up the other comes down; the less connected you are, the more difficult it will be to run the business.

With a connected, automated mindset, a strategy can be developed at the top and rapidly implemented all the way down. This agility is what allows businesses to outpace change and evolve faster than the competition.

After all, you don’t lead the market by following it.

Debbie Green, Vice President of Applications, Oracle UK

Inside Edge 2 Creator on Bhaisaab, the Long Delay, and the Amazon Series’ Tone

Inside Edge 2 Creator on Bhaisaab, the Long Delay, and the Amazon Series’ Tone

At midnight on Friday, Inside Edge — Amazon's first original series from India, about the power-hungry individuals behind a fictionalised version of the Twenty20 cricket tournament Indian Premier League — returned after a long absence: nearly two and a half years. According to Inside Edge creator Karan Anshuman, that was partly because a second season was never on the cards. In fact, it's the response to the first innings that is responsible for the existence of Inside Edge 2. Anshuman also spoke about the character of Bhaisaab, who was written as a MacGuffin and is now played by Aamir Bashir, and why the Prime Video series has a tone that's akin to a soap opera.

Inside Edge 2 Review: Why Is One of Amazon's Worst Indian Series Still a Thing?

“[Inside Edge] was just a concept that I had and then we worked on it and it was just a big fun experiment for us, because there were no constraints,” Anshuman told Gadgets 360. “We were shooting it like one long film and I don't think anyone was really aware of what we were getting into at that point. There was no plan, so to speak, of a second season, and it's only after it came out and, everyone was like, ‘Man, this has really struck home in a way that we didn't see coming.' And so, then we had to huddle and get back into the writers' room. And that process, from that point to finishing it, it's how much time it takes to put the show together. So now that we have a bit of a thing going, we're better prepared. So, if there is a [season 3], it won't be that long.”

Given the Inside Edge makers hadn't anticipated a second season, they also had to deal with the character of Bhaisaab, who had only existed as a voice all through the first season. Anshuman rightly called it a MacGuffin, in that it was important to the plot and characters' motivation, but otherwise irrelevant. But after the character became more popular than they could have imagined, going into Inside Edge 2, Anshuman & Co. had a decision to make.

“It's not something the writers planned, ‘Oh, this is gonna go viral,' in the way that it did,” Anshuman added. “Obviously you don't plan for that kind of stuff. [But season 2 brought] that whole pressure of, ‘Do we even introduce Bhaisaab in the second season? Or do we just keep him the way we did in the first and just play with him as like a voice of God, or a deus ex machina to sort of come in and help move the plot along?' But then we took a call and we went with it.”

As you already know, that call ended up being the former route. Aamir Bashir (Sacred Games) plays Bhaisaab in the second season, whose full name is Yashwardhan Patil. Inside Edge 2 also reveals that Bhaisaab is the president of the Indian Cricket Board, analogous to the real-life Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). Bhaisaab is one of a very few muted characters on Inside Edge, in what is otherwise an over-the-top show filled with larger-than-life individuals. Anshuman said that's because Inside Edge was one of India's first originals and they wanted it to act as a bridge for Bollywood audiences.

“In all honesty, we have a tradition in terms of our viewers and audiences who are so conditioned to watching Bollywood in a certain sort of hyper band of cinema,” Anshuman added. “I have always been a champion of going towards the kind of cinema that I like, which is, I love indie cinema. But that doesn't mean you limit yourself to a certain kind of thing. So, because this was the first show, this was sort of bridge I thought at the time, and then I really enjoyed doing something like this.

“I think Mirzapur [which I co-created] also was hyper-real in a way. That's not to say that I wouldn't be interested in doing something that's closer to [what I like], in terms of the treatment and style and a way of doing things. [Inside Edge 2] is slightly different, you'll find there's an evolution in that regard from the first to the second.”

Inside Edge 2 is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video worldwide.

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