Google recognition for Astra Concrete

Google India recently announced several initiatives for small and medium businesses in Goa, to create an online presence by going digital. Company officials also announced central India winners of SMB Heroes 2017, a nationwide contest of small business that powered growth through the internet.

Madkai based Astra Concrete won the award for business impact through digital while the other two winners were Mumbai based companies Safecity and Pipa Bella. The winners were felicitated by Manguirish Pai Raikar and Yogesh Andlay co-chair of FICCI Startup Committee.

Briefing on programmes and products for small business owners, Director – Marketing Solutions Shalini Girish said, that India has 400 million internet users and presence of the net has transformed the way how people consume information, connect with each other and find business opportunities. “We see the internet as a great democratising force that breaks down barriers and location,” she said.

According to estimates made by Google, of one lakh Goan business only 8,000 have gone digital and have on line presence. Elucidating on the benefits of going online, Shrikant Parulekar, Astra Concrete, said that, using online sites and maps, his business reach expanded beyond Goa to exports and other states.

Several local unit owners were present at the occasion and the officials announced training programmes offered on line, in classrooms and on the mobile for them.

The online training is free while the offline sessions are at marginal cost, said Girish.

She added that research has shown that, profits grow twice as fast for businesses that go digital and 52 percent of digital businesses cater to outside markets.

“Digital businesses also employ five times more employees than offline companies,” said Girish.

Mapusa Urban Co-op Bank asks RBI to permit monetization of assets

Mapusa Urban Co-operative Bank has asked the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to permit it to monetize assets or sell properties attached from defaulters that are totally worth over `60 crore, said Ramakant Khalap, one of the bank’s directors.

“Mapusa Urban is considering various options, the first one being a proposal to monetize assets. We have commercial spaces in Panaji and Mapusa and on the books, their value is just `25-30 lakh, but the actual value will be around `6 to 7 crore. We have asked RBI to allow us to show this as assets,” Khalap told reporters. The bank is currently sitting on gross non–performing assets (GNPA) of `25 crore and has made provisions against these non–performing assets. Simultaneously, the RBI has imposed sanctions on the bank to prevent it from lending to customers, effectively putting a stop on the bank’s revenue source.

“The bank’s accumulated losses are at `55 crore which we have carried forward. Our annual salary outgo is `12 crore. If the RBI does not take a policy decision then the bank will have to consider other options,” Khalap said. One of the options before the board of directors is to explore the possibility of merging with another co-operative bank or to convert the bank into a co-operative credit society. These options are not being considered, but could be pursued if the bank is unable to sell properties which it has attached from defaulters.

“There are several cases of properties under litigation and we have asked RBI and even spoken to its officials to ask if we can compromise and arrive at a one-time settlement on cases pending in courts,” Khalap said.

IT Minister Rohan Khaunte wants to create an initiative like T-Hub to encourage Goan talent

Rohan KhaunteAs part of an outreach Programme of IT Minister in the state of Telengana, Rohan Khaunte proposed to have startup incubators like T-Hub in Goa. T-Hub Hyderabad hosted Rohan Khaunte and showcased several startup models developed at the centre. Khaunte was accompanied by IT Secretary of Goa Ameya Abhyankar and other important dignitaries of the state. T-Hub has been a success story since its inception and has produced brilliant startups that have gone onto making strong mark in the national IT industry. Rohan Khaunte also called upon his counterpart of the Telegana state IT Minister K.T. Rama Rao. Khaunte pledged to build a “great nation” in close cooperation with the state of Telengana.  K.T. Rama Rao expressed his pleasure in hosting Khaunte and delegation from Goa to improve and study the IT ecosystem.

“I’m looking forward to guiding and working with Goa in improving the IT ecosystem: Strong states, stronger India. The meeting is in continuation to the MoU signed last year between Goa and Telangana for mutual cooperation in IT and Skill Development,” Rama Rao said.

Central Government to setup cancer centres in Goa Medical College

Cancer centresGoa government signed a MoU with the Union Health Ministry to setup regional cancer centres in the state. Central Government has sanctioned 45 crores for the project. The centres will be developed by the state nodal agency, the Goa State Infrastructure Development Corporation. “The centre would be set up in the premises of the Goa Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) and its infrastructure would be ready within six months,” Health Minister Vishwajit Rane told pressmen. The cancer centre funded by the Union government, would be the first such facility in Goa and in the Konkan region. Rane also informed that specialised staff will be posted from the centre.

The MoU comes at a time when the cases of cancer are rising at an alarming rate.

GCCI and ICAI to conduct seminar on GST

GCCI and ICAI to conduct seminar on GSTGoa Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) in association with the Goa branch of Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) and Taxsutra organized a comprehensive two-day seminar on the 14th and 15th of July in the GCCI hall. The seminar was held with a view to help all professionals as well as manufacturers, traders and service providers to understand the finer details of GST and to be prepared for the transition. The seminar covered in detail all topics related to the GST law and its implementation. Also put into focus was the different procedures required such as registration, filing of returns, availing input tax credit, TDS, and refunds. The seminar also discussed on how GST would impact the functioning of businesses and changes in business process required for compliance.

Panel to finalise Tourism Department’s branding, marketing strategies

The government has recently constituted a state level marketing and promotion committee headed by Minister for Tourism Manohar ‘Babu’ Azgaonkar to finalise branding plans and marketing strategies for state tourism as well as all other promotional and marketing related matters.

The committee will also finalise and recommend to the government a calendar of events for the annual year with probable estimates along with a list of standby events up to 80 per cent of the annual budget allocation on account of promotion and marketing. Such calendar of events would be finalized for the period from the month of June of the current year to the month of May in the succeeding year. In respect of the balance 20 per cent of the annual budgetary allocation, it shall be open for the government to decide on the events to be participated and activities to be undertaken.

The committee will be for all purposes a recommendatory body to the government and render all help and assistance for deciding matters relating to promotion and marketing activities of the state tourism. As such, all the decisions of the committee would be subjected to approval by the government.

The execution of the events and activities under the promotion and marketing will be carried out by the department of tourism. The government may, however, allot any specific event or activity to Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) for execution, according to the notification pertaining to the constitution of this committee.

GTDC chairperson Nilesh Cabral is the vice chairperson of the committee, while its members include secretary tourism and managing director of GTDC, besides Ramnath Quenim, Lavina Ruzai Rodrigues, Abhijeet Walke, Nandan Kudchadkar, and Suraj Morajkar. The director of tourism is the member secretary.

The committee will decide upon and recommend for the empanelment of various agencies for execution of scope of work of the activities under promotion and marketing of Goa tourism.

IFFI invites entries for Indian Panorama 2017

IFFI GoaIndian Panorama is a significant component of the International Film Festival of India, organized by the Directorate of Film Festivals under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India, which features the best films of the year. Directorate of Film Festivals has initiated the process for receiving entries for Indian Panorama section of the 48th International Film Festival of India to be held from November 20-28, 2017 in Goa, with some changes in the regulations.

26 feature and 21 non-feature contemporary Indian films of cinematic, thematic and aesthetic excellence will be selected, for the promotion of film art. Films certified by CBFC or produced during the last 12 months preceding the festival i.e. 1st September, 2016 to 31st July, 2017 are eligible for Indian Panorama 2017. Films not certified by CBFC and produced within this period can also be submitted. Out of 26 feature films selected in Indian Panorama, two films will be recommended for the Competition Section of International Film Festival of India.

Sesa Football Academy to equip players beyond football: SFA President

Vedanta Sesa Goa Iron Ore is committed to foster skill development through sports and the Sesa Football Academy has been doing this since its inception in 1999.

Speaking at the CII’s flagship event on sports, President of SFA, Annanya Agarwal spoke about ‘Corporate Philanthropy and Sports’.

The event organized by CII titled ‘CII Scorecard 2017’ was held in Delhi and attended by esteemed dignitaries: Vijay Goel, Union Minister, Youth Affairs and Sports, Ratan P Watal, Principal Advisor, NITI Aayog, and others.

Sharing his views Annanya Agarwal, President, Sesa Football Academy said “Our dream is to create players who will make India proud at global level”.

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