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Starwood To Relocate Global HQ To India In March 2015 For A Month

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As Prime Minister Modi’s significant visit to the USA nears end, international hospitality giant Starwood Hotels & Resorts is betting big on India. The group announced that it will relocate its global headquarters from the United States to India in March 2015 for a month-long immersion. Starwood President & CEO Frits van Paasschen and the company’s top executives will split their time between Mumbai and Delhi, conducting day-to-day business from this important global destination with immense potential for outbound travel. Following the company’s successful relocations to China in 2011 and Dubai in 2013, this third leadership move underscores Starwood’s unique approach to cultivating a global culture and fostering relationships in key growth markets. “Global trends are revolutionizing travel.  Rapidly growing markets and a more interconnected world are bringing high-end travelers to new markets like never before,” said van Paasschen.  “As a company with operations in over 100 countries, we at Starwood know that there is no substitute for witnessing firsthand this huge transformation.” van Paasschen continued: “This is a particularly exciting time for us to relocate to India.  Its renewed focus on travel infrastructure is much needed, as travel demand is fueled by economic growth and a population expected to overtake China by 2030.  We all know of India as a hotbed of technological innovation and global services.  Coupled with the rise in entrepreneurship and investment, millions of people are joining its middle class every year.  And, of course, this means millions of new travelers.  At the same time, India is both unique and immensely diverse.  Our extended time there will allow us to immerse ourselves and appreciate new approaches to the business of hospitality.”

Starwood’s legacy in India dates back to 1973 with the debut of its Sheraton brand in Mumbai. Starwood currently operates 40 hotels in India with another 36 hotels under development.  Across South Asia, Starwood remains on track to reach its goal of 100 hotels under operation or development in the region by 2016.

Huawei Launches Honor Smarthphone Series, Tablet
The festive season has come and all the big players are diving in the market with their latest launch. On Monday (29 September), two days before Durga Puja, Huawei, 3rd largest smartphone brand, has launched its Honor series of smarthphones that includes 2 smartphones - Honor 6 (Rs 19,999) and Honor Holly and 2 tablets - Honor X1  and Honor T1 (Rs 9,999) - available to the visitors of Flipkart. Cai Liqun, India CEO, Huawei Telecommunications (India) commented, “India is a strategic market for Huawei and a big focus for Huawei Consumer Business Group. The company has performed extremely well in the market in the last two years demonstrating a firm commitment for India. Our product line up for the next quarter is exciting and promising and we are confident that our tie-up with Flipkart will further fuel our growth and success in India.” Michael Adnani, VP – Retail & Head - Brand Alliances, Flipkart, said “Introducing products and technology in tune with customer requirements and aspirations is our key focus at Flipkart. This exclusive partnership with a global company like Huawei will help us bring in a world class range of devices for our customers. We are confident that this new Honor range will be really successful on Flipkart, especially during the festive season.” Huawei aslo announced an exclusive tie-up with India’s largest e-commerce marketplace Flipkart, for the Honor range of devices. This new range will be sold exclusively through Flipkart with the Honor 6 smartphone going on sale starting 6th October 2014. Honor 6 smartphone packs a 13 MP Sony camera and a 5 MP front camera featuring Ultra- FastSnapshot (0.6 seconds fast capture shutter) with 10 level Auto Beauty level Enhancement. The high performance GPU (Mali T628 MP4) provides a superb gaming experience. The smartphone supports high speed connectivity up to 42Mbps D/L 3G speed and has an option of to either connect to Wi-Fi directly or via hotspots.

Dell Launches ‘Dell Storm’ To Strengthen Commercial Business In India
Dell, leading end to end solutions provider, announced the launch of its “Dell Storm” outreach to increase the scope of its coverage and influence to 117 tier 2 and tier 3 cities across the country. The programme was launched as part of the activities surrounding Dell’s renewed distribution focus that was announced earlier this year. Dell has partnered with Distribution partner Ingram Micro for the outreach. Dell currently has over 2,000 channel partners and is looking to increase this number to strengthen and broaden its coverage reach. With the new strategy Dell aims to reach out to 300 additional channel partners & System Integrators across the country. Dell and Ingram will be reaching out to channel partners in 36 locations of the North and South of India each, 26 locations of the West and 19 of the east. The objective of the outreach is to help attain maximum coverage and scale up business in future by reaching out to more partners. Dell has partnered with 31 branches of Ingram Micro to strengthen its outreach in these location and aims to sell the business class desktops and notebooks including DellOptiPlex Micro based on Intel dual core, OptiPlex Dual core SFF and Latitude i3 at better price points. As part of the activities planned Dell will be giving Sales Reps of Channel Partner organizations the Dell Storm kit for their enablement.

MobiKwik, eBay India Partner To Offer 15% Discount
MobiKwik, India’s number 1 mobile wallet has announced an exclusive partnership with eBay India for the festive season. Together, MobiKwik and eBay India will offer an exclusive 15% discount to users choosing to make payments on the eBay India platforms with their MobiKwik wallet. The discount is of the highest-ever value offered by eBay India and will be available across the website, mobile site, and mobile app versions of the world’s leading consumer-to-consumer online sales portal. The MobiKwik wallet greatly enhances consumer convenience while they shop on eBay India as they need not navigate through payment gateways and banks. With a single-click, the payment is processed in the most secure manner backed by stringent security techniques. MobiKwik and eBay India have been associated since May 2014.

Hines India Residential Launches With $250 Mn Capital
Hines, the international real estate firm, announced the launch of Hines India Residential. This initiative has been conceived to invest in multi-phased, for-sale residential developments that require long-term equity capital, with a particular focus in key urban centers of India, like the National Capital Region (NCR), the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), Bangaluru and Pune. The programme has an initial capitalisation of more than $250 million, and its focus is to partner with local Indian developers. The partnership will leverage local partners’ Indian experience and Hines global know-how in designing and developing differentiated residential products that creates value for end users.

Paytm Unveils Its Wedding Boutique
Paytm, India’s largest mobile commerce platform extends its services with the latest additions; wedding theme based merchandise. The recently launched wedding boutique has thematic merchandise for brides, cocktails, reception, honeymoon etc. This boutique features various products pertaining to occasion right from Lehengas, Heavy ornamental sarees, and wedding gowns both in western as well as ethnic styles. Another highlight of the store is its expansive list of categories comprising watches, clutches and bags, heels, make-up and fragrances, nightwear and baby dolls, honeymoon dresses, jutties, lingerie etc. Apart from this, the section also has categories like accessories and sunglasses, slings and totes, casual shoes etc. Vijay Shekhar Sharma, CEO, Paytm commented, “The wedding season is here! Weddings are a time hectic shopping, we at Paytm aim at making it a more hassle free occasion. Customers can pick anything from dresses to gifts. The Wedding Boutique is an extension of our suite of initiatives to bring India’s commerce online.”

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