Will Budget 2023 accelerate Digital India?
It’s that time of the year again…
The nominations for the 95th Academy Awards were announced last night and guess what? RRR’s Naatu Naatu has been nominated in the Best Song category. After the splash at Golden Globes, will the Telegu epic bag an Oscar as well? Fingers crossed!
Other nominations from India include Kartiki Gonsalves’ The Elephant Whisperer in the Documentary Short Film category, as well as Shaunak Sen's All That Breathes in the Best Documentary Feature category.
You can check the full list here.
Meanwhile, B2B ecommerce player reported a 43% increase in losses for FY22 even as its revenue jumped nearly 34%. As for its consolidated expenses, costs increased 42.63% to Rs 2,454 crore, mostly on account of increase in employee benefit expenses and contract costs.
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In today’s newsletter, we will talk about
- Budget 2023’s impact on Digital India
- Agritech seeks stable policy, awareness initiatives
- Innovaccer lays off 15% workforce
Here’s your trivia for today: Where was the first Winter Olympic Games held?
India's tech industry has been pushing for growth, supported last year by the government promoting the digital economy and fintech-enabled development. This year, the sector is hoping the Budget will further push the agenda of Digital India with initiatives around skilling and AI.
- The government and the industry need to focus on upskilling employees, especially in the area of emerging technologies.
- The Budget is expected to provide new incentives to encourage R&D investments into newer technology.
- The industry also expects processes that make the movement of goods easier, as well as simpler permissions for special economic zones (SEZs).
Last year's Budget was the first to mention the term "agritech". This year, the reigning opinion is that a lot needs to be done on-ground to make it easier for agritech startups to operate, given the complexity of factors they deal with on an everyday basis.
Factors for growth:
- A stable and clear export policy to help India emerge as a major agri exporter.
- Reduce the number of licensing requirements and digitalise/centralise the processes.
- Introduce service-linked incentives for the drone industry and match on-paper rules with ground realities.
Healthtech unicorn has laid off about 15% of its workforce across teams in India and US. "We are taking the much-needed step of doubling down on our core capabilities and streamlining our organisational focus," said Abhinav Shashank, Co-founder and CEO, Innovaccer, in a statement to YourStory, adding that the company is “going to deprioritise certain areas and offerings that distract us from our core portfolio”.
- In an internal mail, Abhinav blamed “uncertain macroeconomic environment” for the job cuts.
- In September, the company let go of 90 employees across various departments in a cost-cutting move.
- Recently, ShareChat laid off 20% of its workforce while Hubilo laid off 35% of its employees.
News & updates
- Healthy add-on: Amazon announced a new prescription perk for US Prime members, hoping to boost subscriptions and attract users to its pharmacy service. Called RxPass, it will allow Prime members to get as many drugs as they need from a list of 50 generic medications.
- A bitter taste: Consumer Reports urged four chocolate producers—Hershey, Mondelez, Theo Chocolate, and Trader Joe's—to commit by Valentine's Day to reduce the amounts of lead and cadmium in their dark chocolate products, after testing revealed harmful levels of the heavy metals.
- Carbon-free: As countries are desperate to lower emissions and reach climate goals, the world also faces a shortage of traditional fossil fuels. The answer to this contradiction has taken an unlikely turn: Keep nuclear reactors running for far longer than anyone ever expected.
Where was the first Winter Olympic Games held?
Answer: Chamonix, France, in 1924.
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