& IAMAI Solve Cloud Puzzle for SMEs

  • Eminent panelists help demystify world of cloud computing at 4th Conference on ICT for SMEs – Taking to the Cloud, Pay for what you need
  • Chief Guest Mr. N Ravi Shanker, Additional Secretary, Department of IT, Govt. of India released IndiaMART-IAMAI report on ‘Free for SMEs:2011″
  • Mr. Dinesh Agarwal, Founder & CEO, gave a special address underlying importance of simplifying technologies
  • Adoption of ICT by SMEs, financial need of SMEs in leveraging ICT services, strategies to digitize, etc. were brought into focus

New Delhi, 30th July, 2011: ‘Need to simplify technology and do away with jargons to help SMEs understand ICT better’ was the popular sentiment echoed by industry experts at the 4th Conference on ICT for SMEs organised by and IAMAI at the India Habitat Centre, New Delhi yesterday. The conference helped SMEs gauge the potential of cloud and connected them to this new emerging technology. The panelists, representing different fields of ICT, brought forward their perspectives to demystify the move to cloud for SMEs. With encouraging words from the Chief Guest Mr. N Ravi Shanker, Additional Secretary, Department of Information Technology, Government of India, the conference was off to a flying start. Relating ICT for SMEs to the cable TV era, he shared how the latter was seen as a harbinger of change. It required subscription on monthly basis to view different channels. Similarly, Indian SMEs should be paying only for those services that they require or use.

Mr. N K Goyal, President, CMAI Association of India and Member Governing Council, Telecom Equipment & Services Export Promotion Council, Govt. of India moderated the inaugural session. Mr. Dinesh Agarwal, Founder & CEO, recalled how for last 20 years, IT has transformed the country. He added, “It is important to make technology invisible for SMEs. Only if we simplify it for SMEs, they would pro-actively use for their own businesses.” Mr. Desi Valli, Executive Director & COO, Net 4 India Ltd. also laid stress on use of ICT by SMEs.

Session on ‘Technology and Infrastructure for Growth of SMEs’, moderated by Mr. Soumya Sarkar, News Editor, Mint, saw panelists dwell on technologies for SMEs which do not need much investment. Mr. Atul Sharma, Founder & CTO, KooKoo stated that the SMEs need to strategise if they wanted to effectively use cloud while Mr. Shyam Sunder, Chief Knowledge Officer, Ramco Systems said that the trust on cloud computing has been on the rise. Stressing on the use of internet, Mr. Brijesh Agrawal, COO,, said, “If an SME owner is willing to spend 10 minutes of his time on the internet everyday, he can turn his business profitable by generating leads online. There are innumerable free services available online which can help you improve productivity and generate sales for your business.” Echoing a similar sentiment, Mr. Bikky Khosla, CEO, further added that B2B can not only be used for supplying but for sourcing too. B2B marketplaces seemed to be popular amongst the audience as their questions, in the Q&A round, were targeted more at generating business through them. One of the audience member asked the panel if there was a ‘pay for what you use’ model. To this Mr. Brijesh Agrawal replied, “ has an annual subscription model and also ‘pay per lead’ model where SMEs can purchase the contact details of the buyer after going through the details.”

Mr. Laveesh Bhandari, Founder Director, Indicus Analytics chaired the third session ‘ICT enabled SME’s in Developing Countries & Financial Needs’. Panelist Mr. Dhiraj Garg, GM-Cloud Solutions, IBM India elaborated on the difference cloud can bring to SMEs’ business – generate new business model, increase operational efficiency, improve security, etc. Mr. Aakash Goel, Associate, Sequoia Capital also shared that cloud held lot of promise as SMEs can reduce capital expenditure cost while Mr. Kartik Taneja, Head India and SAARC Business & Govt Relations at Verisign India, brought the focus of SMEs on the need to take control of their personal domain name.

With mobile phone users multiplying by each day, it was essential that the panelists discuss on how SMEs can have simple strategies to digitize on mobile. Mr. Ravi Visvesvaraya Prasad, CEO, Telecom Industry Consultant moderated the last session and sought opinions from panelists on what are mobile application utilities for SMEs. It saw expert views from Mr. Romit Mitra, VP, Marketing and Alliances, 2ergo; Mr. Deepak Goyal, VP, Sales, Air2Web India; Mr. Sanjay Diwan, VP, Marketing, IMI Mobile and Mr. Rohit Gupta, VP & Head – Wireless, Tata Teleservices Ltd. They elaborated on how SMEs can benefit from mobile cloud computing and improve business efficiency, how mobile can help in trading & commerce and assist in reaching out to target audience with precision and cost efficiency,

The success of past three conferences on ‘ICT for SMEs’ by and IAMAI had increased the level of expectation from this conference. Not letting down the audience, the event promised to be one of the most engaging and informative session for the SMEs who were familiarised with the complex processes of using cloud.