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Last Updated : Feb 12, 2020 12:51 PM IST

Amazon Smbhav, and the art of the possible for Indian SMBs

Watch the first episode of the series on Amazon Smbhav, broadcast on CNN-News18, featuring NR Narayana Murthy and Kishore Biyani.

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Amazon Smbhav,  a two-day thought leadership SMB summit, was held at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi on 15 & 16 January. Over 3000 small and medium businesses as well as micro enterprises from across India had an open interaction with peers, domain experts, and India Inc regarding opportunities in eCommerce, future trends, and learnings. Smbhav also saw industry leaders, policy makers, solution providers and Amazon’s global leadership share their perspectives on issues concerning SMBs, like logistics, payments, digitisation, global trade etc. Documenting some of these scenes was the first episode of the series on Amazon Smbhav, broadcast on CNN-News18, featuring NR Narayana Murthy and Kishore Biyani.

In his keynote speech, NR Narayana Murthy, Co-founder of Infosys, advised SMBs to demonstrate discipline, hard work, good work ethics and good values. Sharing lessons from his entrepreneurial journey, he said SMBs will play an “extremely important role” in taking India’s economy to the $5 trillion mark because they contribute 10% of the country’s business output.

“To do that,” Murthy said, “you have to create a differentiated business value proposition...better than any of your competitors. That is going to come because of innovation.” He emphasized the importance of hiring the best quality people, putting together teams with collectively exhaustive but mutually exclusive skill sets, and embracing durable value systems. Stating that harmony in society is imperative, Murthy added, “Always ask, will what I am doing make this a better place for all of us?”

Another highlight of Smbhav was Kishore Biyani, Founder and CEO of Future Group, who spoke with disarming candor in a fireside chat with Gopal Pillai, Vice President, Seller Services, Amazon India. He recalled, “I started by supplying fabric to the garment industry. It was a journey of learning.” Calling India the most heterogeneous market, he said setting up offices across zones allowed the Future Group to scale up quickly.

He added, “We decentralised on day one, and that helped us understand the nuances of each market.” Advising the audience to not take failures personally, he explained, “Today, failure doesn’t disappoint us because that’s the customer saying ‘you’ve not done well.’ Change yourself, or change the product.” He also encouraged SMBs to embrace challenges, saying, “Every challenge will teach you something. We need to introspect what this thing is teaching us, and how we apply that in our journey.”

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First Published on Feb 12, 2020 12:41 pm
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