Viewpoint: A Panel Discussion on Budget 2013

The Indian Institute of Management’s finance and investments club – Beta organized Viewpoint – a panel discussion on this year’s union budget on Tuesday the 5th of March, 2013 at the institute’s campus.  The discussion saw distinguished faculty, from the areas of economics and finance get together to air their views and opinions on the subject. The faculty trio that chaired this event were Prof Errol D’Souza, Prof Ravindra Dholakia and Prof Jayanth Verma.

Prof Errol D’Souza was fairly happy with the budget presented by the FM considering that India is suffering from a high fiscal and current account deficits coupled with economic inequalities and rampant corruption. He went on to say that using expenditure by way of cash transfers which are less corruption prone shows that it wants to move towards a more transparent system. Prof D’Souza also believes that government can contribute to the reining in of inflation by reducing the fiscal deficit and by reducing subsidies on public utilities and petroleum. The government’s revenues can be shored up by measures that are growth promoting such as increasing the climate for investment.

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The next speaker on the panel was Prof Dholakia, in his opinion the FM had identified the right symptoms but the diagnosis was flawed. The FM addressed slowdown in savings as a key concern – but erroneously thinks that the slowdown is in household savings instead of public sector savings and corporate savings. Also the FM was of the opinion that the problem of slow growth rate can be effectively tackled by investments, Prof Dholakia believes that this will not solve the problem, instead the actual issue is capacity underutilization, which can be solved by sanctioning of projects in the pipeline. He was also of the view that the fiscal deficit might have been understated due to underestimation of the expenditure involved in the Food Security Bill and overestimation of non-tax revenue.

The final speaker on the panel was Prof Jayanth Verma who spoke extensively on the problem of capital flight. According to Prof Verma households expecting double-digit inflation are investing in non-financial inflation hedged assets and commodities such as gold. Many business groups are investing more money outside India than in India. Also FIIs have become a major source for funding the current account deficit but are subject to abnormal taxation laws, the FM has in his budget not addressed the issue of improper taxation of both FDI and FIIs.

The discussion held the audience enthralled and was concluded with a lively Q&A session. The third edition of the series well received by an enthusiastic audience comprised of not only students of the flagship PGP programme but also the PGP-Agri-Business Management, Fellow Programme in Management and the Armed Forces and PGP Executive programmes.

PGP 2011-13 Final Placements complete at IIM Ahmedabad

The placement process for the graduating batch of the Post Graduate Programme (PGP) in Management at IIM Ahmedabad has been successfully completed with students being placed in sectors and functions of their choice. The successful recruitment cycle stands testament to the high quality of students at the institute and the robust nature of the placement process that provides adequate flexibility to both students and recruiters.

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Placement process

The placement process was conducted in two stages. The first was the laterals process where firms interviewed students with work experience and offered them mid-level managerial positions. In the second stage, the final placement process, firms were grouped into cohorts based on the profile offered, and invited to campus in different clusters. As in previous years, students were provided the flexibility of making a “dream” application to any firm of their choice even with an offer in hand. This gave students the freedom to build careers in sectors of their preference.

Laterals process

50% of the batch was eligible for lateral placements, which provided students an opportunity to optimally leverage their work experience. The laterals process included firms from diverse sectors such as technology, consulting, pharmaceuticals and analytics. Firms which participated in the laterals process included Aditya Birla Group, Amazon, Deloitte, General Electric, Google, Microsoft, Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Thomson Reuters.

Sectoral overview

Despite adverse market conditions, IIM Ahmedabad did not witness a hiring freeze from any sector. Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays, Citibank, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Morgan Stanley, Royal Bank of Scotland and Standard Chartered were the global investment banks that recruited students from the batch of 2011-13. Several other banks and financial institutions such as Axis Bank, DBS, HDFC, Kotak, JM Financial and Yes Bank also recruited students this year.

Consulting companies recruited in large numbers in both the finals and laterals processes. Recruiters in the consulting space included global strategy consulting firms as well as niche consulting firms: Accenture, AT Kearney, Bain & Company, Booz and Company, Boston Consulting Group, Capgemini, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Feedback Ventures, KPMG, McKinsey & Company, Monitor Group, Oliver Wyman, Opera Solutions, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, TSMG and Vector Consulting.

A large number of students took up roles in Sales and Marketing in various companies such as Airtel, Asian Paints, HUL, ITC, Kraft, L’Oreal, Mars, Nestle, P&G, Pepsi and Reckitt Benckiser. General Management and leadership profiles were offered to students by Aditya Birla Group, Cipla, General Electric, Ingersoll Rand, Mahindra, Reliance, RPG Group, TAS, Thomson Reuters among others. Students secured roles in the technology sector in firms such as Cognizant, Google, Hewlett Packard, HCL, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP.

Top recruiters

More than 130 firms participated in the placement process in 2013 including the laterals process. In terms of volume, Boston Consulting Group was the top recruiter across clusters having picked 15 students from the campus. Several consulting firms recruited a significant number of students. Accenture recruited 13 students while McKinsey & Company and Capgemini made 10 offers each, and Bain & Company selected 9 students from the batch.

Among global investment banks, Goldman Sachs was the largest recruiter having picked 7 students for roles in financial markets as well as quantitative strategy. In the consumer goods and services sector, Airtel was the lead recruiter having made 11 offers to students for roles in marketing and finance, both in India and in international locations. Amazon recruited 7 students for roles in business development and operations.

Entrepreneurship

IIM Ahmedabad has always encouraged students to take up entrepreneurship as a career and this year, five students opted out of the placement process to start their own ventures. The start-ups include a professional network for photographers, an online sampling and market research portal and an e-commerce venture for project equipment.

In line with its culture of fostering entrepreneurship, IIMA offers a placement holiday to its students wherein they will be allowed to participate in placements in one of the next two years in the event that their venture does not work out.

Prof. Kirti Sharda, the Chairperson of the Placement Committee, IIM Ahmedabad said, “The demand for IIMA graduates continues to be high and has overridden concerns of a general slowdown in hiring activities in 2012-13. Students have been placed in their chosen roles in diverse cohorts comprising a remarkable array of recruiters. We are glad to announce that the PGP batch of 2011-13 has been placed and the PGP Final Placement Process at IIM Ahmedabad is complete.”

Barathram A, the Recruitment Secretary of IIM Ahmedabad said, “We are extremely happy with the way full time placements have panned out this year. Despite the uncertain economic scenario, students had opportunities in various sectors. Consulting firms, FMCG and pharmaceutical companies were among the major recruiters this year. Students were able to secure roles of their choice standing testimony to the high recruiter-student fit at IIM Ahmedabad”.

Further details about the placement process including details about compensation will be released in an audited report, as per the Indian Placement Reporting Standards (IPRS), introduced by IIMA in an effort to bring about greater transparency in B-school placements across the country. The IPRS report for ‘Final Placements 2013’ will be released 6 months from the date of graduation, and the link to the report will be shared with all stakeholders, once released.

Official Link: http://www.iimahd.ernet.in/users/placement/files/Finals%202013/PGP%20Final%20Placements%202013%20-%20Press%20Release.pdf

Finesse Art Mela: Bringing Art Lovers Together

ImageFinesse, the Fine Arts club of IIM Ahmedabad, in association with the Union Bank of India and Temperature Lounge, organized the “Art Mela”, a repertoire of events and workshops on the  13th and 14th October. As a precursor to the Mela, the club hosted an Online Arts Quiz on its Facebook page, followed by an Acrylic Painting Workshop on 10th and 11th October by Tanishqua Dewani, MA(Fine Arts).

The Mela began with successive workshops – Caricature Workshop by Prof. Sekhar Mukherjee, faculty at National Institute of Design and Calligraphy Workshop by Tanishqua Dewani. The workshops were attended by more than 100 participants from IIM A campus as well as from other campuses like NID. An art exhibition displaying the extraordinary talent of the IIM A community was well appreciated and praised by all the visitors.

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A Face Painting competition was also organized on the first day of the Art Mela and it attracted participation from entire IIM A student community- FPM, PGP and PGPX. Prof V.V. Rao, an excellent artist himself, was the judge for the event. On the second day, both the workshops were continued and the event finally concluded with the most awaited competition: Haute Couture – the Fashion Design competition. As many as 11 teams participated in the event. The participants were from not only IIM A student community – FPM, PGP and PGPX, but also participants from different colleges like NID, IIFT and LD Arts College. The competition was judged by Prof Neharika Vohra. With art lovers and enthusiasts flocking to participate and catch a glimpse of the talent on display, the debut edition of the Art Mela was a grand success and was highly praised by faculty, student and staff members of IIM A community.