The Prime Minister of Netherlands, Mark Rutte is all set to visit Bengaluru on 25 May.
The Country wants to strengthen the innovation ecosystem with India efficiently. This comprises the setting up of Startup Link in India. Startup Link is an umbrella initiative in order to help Dutch startups explore the Indian market. This trip for Mark Rutte plays a vital role in pertaining to Netherland’s focus toward India.
It could also be understood by the fact with a 120 member business trade delegation, with two ministers and the mayor of the Hague to Bengaluru, the Netherlands-India delegate is the country’s largest delegate to any foreign country!
Even larger than that of Netherland’s recent visit to China.
The Netherlands Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, Sigrid Kaag, is expected to launch the Indo-Dutch Startup Link Digital Hub, on 25 May.
According to a source, Consul General Jaap Werner stated,
The delegates will be visiting Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru, signing a number of MoUs to promote technology and Innovations at all levels universities to SMEs and corporates. In Bengaluru alone, we are expecting to sign 15-20 MoUs. The Bengaluru visit will focus to strengthen the bilateral trades and relationships in the areas of healthcare, smart cities, life sciences, waste management and cybersecurity.
Recently, Netherlands also upgraded its Bengaluru, South India office to a fully operational Consulate General. It also amalgamated various ministerial departments under one roof.
The Senior Deputy Representative Consulate General Of Netherlands, Bengaluru, Meenakshi P.R., stated that the Consulate General would also help Dutch startups soft launch in Indian territory, specifically in Bengaluru.
She also added, IoT, 3D Printing, cybersecurity and blockchain are some of the areas where the startups under startup link can collaborate.
Apart from that, the events on 25 May also include an ‘Innovation power lunch’ where the Dutch PM will meet 30 top Indian CEOs.
However, there are over 200 Netherlands companies operating in India. While India is the fourth largest investor in the Netherlands, the latter stands fifth in India.
There are plenty of opportunities and challenges to do business in the Indian market. India has been abuzz with Startup culture now!
How This Bangalore Based Augmented Reality Startup Helped Contain Wuhan Covid-19 Outbreak
When news about a new type of virus broke out, the world was not ready for what was to come. The Novel Coronavirus or COVID-19 virus originated in Wuhan province of China. This is now established as the epicenter/epicentrum that quickly paralysed the entire Country, before the virus spread to other countries. Currently, the virus spread to almost every nation on the planet with Italy, Spain, America and Germany being some of the worst affected countries.
The virus seems to have finally subsided in Wuhan and life is slowly returning back to normal. However, when the virus was at its peak, ventilators were the need of the hour. The virus affects the respiratory system and symptoms include difficulty in breathing. Beside the lockdown which played a part in controlling the spread of the virus, ventilators supplied by Huber & Ranner, a German company played a vital role in combating the illness.
However, the technical team could not travel from Germany to Wuhan in order to install the ventilators and demonstrate how to use them. This is where a Bangalore based startup BlinkIn, stepped in to the rescue. According to reports, BlinkIn developed an augmented reality (AR) product named Scotty to provide visual guidance to the technicians in Wuhan. They did this based out of their office in Pocking,Germany. All that the technicians in Wuhan had to do was to click on a link to see a visual demonstration.
The idea behind Scotty was to use lightweight technology in order to provide just enough AR support to get the job done ‘then and there.’ Scotty requires minimal computational power unlike traditional AR, which relies heavily on heavy downloads, graphics processing units and figuring out how to use it.
It is truly wonderful to see how different technologies are adapting to these uncertain times and it will certainly be interesting to see how AR can be merged into other technologies as well in the future.
How The Tech Industry Is Coming Together To Fight The Coronavirus Pandemic
We live in a time when technology has taken over the world. No matter what the problem, there is always a startup or a tech giant coming up with a solution. There is no doubt that technology has elevated the quality of life across the globe and has increased life expectancy all over the world. However, we are currently living in an extraordinary time when the entire world and stock markets are being brought to its knees due to a virus of the physical kind. The virus which originated in the Wuhan province in China, has quickly spread like wildfire across the globe due to its exponential growth and transmission rates. World governments are enforcing quarantine measures in order to combat the spread of the virus. As quarantine measures are taking effect, corporations and businesses have come up with innovative ideas to ensure their work stays on track and have implemented work from home options.
The unforeseen threat of the Novel Coronavirus crippled the stock markets around the world so much so that it is being compared to the great economic depression that shook the world in the 1930’s. However technology companies are coming together to offer whatever assistance they can to help combat the Coronavirus.
Microsoft has always prided itself on being one of the largest technology companies in the world for more than two decades. Microsoft was always on the forefront of innovation and Bill Gates visionary leadership was a vital contributor for its growth. In these testing times Microsoft’s communication application Team has seen a huge surge in its usage. The chat and conferencing app gained more than 12 million daily users in one week as more people worked from home during the coronavirus outbreak. Microsoft understood that healthcare providers and hospitals are under extreme stress and therefore rolled out several features designed to help with telemedicine and employees working from home, such as a bookings application for Teams to help hospitals manage virtual appointments.
Facebook is a social networking platform which boasts of having a whopping 2.36 billion active users on its platform. This makes it a very powerful tool to communicate and spread information quickly. However, this also means a lot of misinformation and myths can be spread as well. Facebook usually has a team of moderators verifying information going online on its platform and checking to see if the information meets their community guidelines. In these testing times, misinformation is spreading at an alarming rate and therefore Facebook is considering the usage of Artificial Intelligence to do the job of a moderator in order to combat wrong information being spread about the Coronavirus.
Microblogging platform Twitter is one of the quickest ways to search for information online from all over the world. A verified Twitter user tagged Jack Dorsey and asked him why popular and esteemed epidemiologists, contagion experts and virologists do not have a verified account which is indicated by a blue tick on their profiles. Paul Graham, the cofounder of Y Combinator retweeted the original post and asked Jack why Twitter is not verifying the accounts of contagion experts as their expertise is the need of the hour. Jack Dorsey was quick to acknowledge Paul Graham’s tweet and has called for users to help Twitter in identifying public health experts.
— Paul Graham (@paulg) March 20, 2020
Help us verify public health experts https://t.co/5HzruGBCKi
— jack 🌍🌏🌎 (@jack) March 21, 2020
Alibaba’s founder Jack Ma has pledged an extraordinary amount of resources to help the world out in this crisis. Jack Ma donated face masks, safety suits and virus testing kits to Japan, Iran and Italy. Italy and Iran in particular have seen the highest cases of Coronavirus outside of China. In the latest update, Jack Ma pledged more support to some of the poorest countries in Asia.
Go Asia! We will donate emergency supplies (1.8M masks, 210K test kits, 36K protective suits, plus ventilators & thermometers) to Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Laos, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan & Sri Lanka. Delivering fast is not easy, but we’ll get it done!
— Jack Ma (@JackMa) March 21, 2020
In this time of crisis, it is heartwarming to see businesses putting profits aside for the moment and instead focus their efforts on helping humanity as a whole. As the whole Coronavirus pandemic sees its course, there will no doubt be countless stories of humanity winning all over the world.
Online Food Delivery Platform Zomato Acquires Uber Eats
Uber Eats, the online food delivery business owned by Uber, has been in the news for quite some time, saying it will cease operations due to losses from the business. Swiggy, which is one of the leading online food delivery startups in India, had its eyes on acquiring Uber Eats. However, the deal could not fall through due to disagreements about the financial terms and taxation clauses.
The Indian public was in for a surprise when Zomato announced they will acquire Uber Eats in an all stock deal for $ 350 million. This is one of the biggest acquisitions of this year. The Uber Eats app ceased operations and instead shows you a notice which redirects you to the Zomato platform.
Uber Eats posted on their official Twitter handle regarding the news about the acquisition.
We entered food delivery in India in 2017 and today is when our journey takes a different route. Zomato has acquired Uber Eats in India and we’ll no longer be available here with immediate effect. We wish all our users more good times with great food on the road ahead pic.twitter.com/WEbJNaJY8M
— Uber Eats India (@UberEats_IND) January 21, 2020
This deal now gives Zomato a 55 % control of the market, which it now shares with its competitor, Swiggy. The online food delivery market has been very difficult for Uber Eats to make inroads as it was already captured by Swiggy and Zomato. The deal excludes Uber Eats’ employees as Zomato stated they will not take them. Uber will absorb these employees and allocate them other business roles.
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