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With 25,000+ subscribers, The Ken is the largest community of thought leaders in Asia. While our reporting and analysis provides necessary context about business in Asia, our subscribers complete the experience by adding their perspectives.

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A daily habit of the who’s who of business in Asia

Nithin Kamath

Founder & CEO, Zerodha

Sairee Chahal

Founder & CEO, Sheroes

Geoff Prentice

Co-founder, Oriente—former Skype co-founder

Ashutosh Raghuvanshi

CEO, Fortis Healthcare

Kabeer Biswas

Co-founder & CEO, Dunzo

Viren Shetty

COO, Narayana Health

Harshil Mathur

Co-founder & CEO, Razorpay

Naveen Munjal

Managing Director, Hero Electric

Hian Goh

Co-founder Openspace Ventures—early investor in Gojek

Subscribers add invaluable insights in exclusive comment sections

Recent Top Comments

Lockdown lessons: India’s affordable private schools face a reckoning

Could education end up taking a cue from the healthcare model that exists today. The underlying premise is that you are responsible for your own health (education). So you eat well, exercise to ensure good health. In education the equivalent would be accessing online resources most of which are available for free. That's the normal mode. If you happen to fall ill, you first respond to it with medicines available at home. In education the equivalent would be to take help from parents, siblings etc. When that fails you go to a doctor (mid level fees) or a specialist (high end fees). That would lead to a pay as you go model for online education.

Anand George ClassRoom, Founder

The elite VC-founder club riding Aarogya Setu to telemed domination

I agree. We too had proposed an AI enabled telemedicine platform to ACT which solves a lot of issues with the current telemedicine platforms as well as Indian healthcare. Currently, telemedicine's effectiveness is dependent on internet availability and connection along with the patient being able to speak English or the language that the doctor speaks. In order to make it more effective, we have built Arintra ( - an AI platform that captures the patient's medical history prior to the consultation and can be used in multiple languages by patients in even Tier II and Tier III cities. It improves patient outcomes and generates patient documentation as well. We proposed this idea to ACT grants to connections with government and other industry players and deploy it for enabling patients in even remote areas to avail tele-consultations. The response we got was that they have already granted funds to telemedicine startups (presumably 1mg, Curefit and Practo) and are looking to subsidize the telemedicine consultations for them so that more patients can come onboard. I guess a 10 crore grant plus the amount of money they are pouring into these startups helps them 'subsidize' the CAC for these platforms to get the patients onboard and offer them 'free' consults so that they can own the data - truly a Bharat Health Stack trying to dominate Bharat's telehealth space.

Preeti Bhargava

The new math for India's $50 billion restaurant industry

While it’s true that many food brands are fighting an uphill battle with aggregators, land lords & overall market sentiment. A good many of them are taking up this opportunity to get the back of the house of the right. They have got a relief from the everyday fire fighting they need to undertake during these times. Also, they are looking to reduce costs by adapting to automation of multiple foods, which helps faster turnaround time, reduced expense on skilled labour & improved efficiencies. Maybe the time has come for the food service segment to re-invent themselves using these times.

Eshwar K Vikas Automating Cloud & QSR kitchens, Mukunda Foods

IVM sidelined in India's podcasting mic-drop moment

Some people are wondering why audio podcasts are making a comeback despite video being the richer medium. Difference between watching video and listening to a podcast is that you can do other things while listening to a podcast. Also, you do not have to worry about having a screen or holding one in your hand - hence the comfort, especially while commute. Finally, there is content like 'Cut the Clutter' by Shekhar Gupta. I used to watch it regularly on YouTube, it is a high quality analysis. But the visuals did not really add much value to the content. Very often, I would start the video while I would keep the phone away and just listen to it on bluetooth earphones while doing my daily chores. Recently, I found out that same content is uploaded as a podcast on Spotify. The switch to podcast could not have been more natural.

Apoorva Mishra Glance (InMobi Group), Product Manager

Many a slip between Third Wave's coffee cup and lip

Firstly I believe that Starbucks is missing a trick by having prices which are almost the same as anywhere in the world. India is a price conscious country and my gut feel says that they shoukd gone with some linkage to purchasing power parity. If others follow or benchmark their prices to Starbucks, it will be a strategic mistake. The good part is Third Wave coffee prices are not as expensive. Secondly retail is all about locations. Starbucks has positioned itself in the premium ends like malls and posh areas wherr the more richer folks spend or reside. Cafe Coffee Day was filling this space but has increasingly lost its mojo. This leaves the space wide open for the newer chains. Locations near office complexes and colleges are a huge opportunity. Thirdly coffee chains should look at differential pricing for takeaways. This will increase both foot fall and revenue. Very clearly a trick is being missed. Of course Loyalty programmes are integral to this model. But for that, the number of outlets have to increase.

Ravishankar P Infosys BPM Ltd,

Ola Electric’s anti-ecosystem e-autorickshaw ambitions

Ola's startegy seems to be " Go Big or go home " It will be interesting to see how early and till what extend Ola is able to implement the plan. I have been extensively following EV market for last few months and globally even the top players in auto sector have struggled to launch successful EV's. Ola's plan to manufacture and launch three wheelers seems overly ambitious when the company has little to no experience in manufacturing even with the right talent and sufficient capital they are more vulnerable to fall.

Aman Jain

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