Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

6 interesting Forbes India reads for the weekend

The weekend is here! So find yourself a comfortable spot and settle down with this compilation of some of the best stories from our writers this week

Published: Sep 23, 2017 09:07:58 AM IST
Updated: Sep 24, 2017 09:22:22 AM IST

6 interesting Forbes India reads for the weekend Image (Clockwise from top left): Sanjiv Bajaj by Joshua Navalkar; Nitin Gadkari by Amit Verma; Byju Raveendran by Nishant Ratnakar for Forbes India; Abhishek Shah by Mexy Xavier

1) Wellthy Therapeutics: Taming diabetes

Mumbai-based young entrepreneur Abhishek Shah has deconstructed the Type 2 diabetes into a simple mathematical equation: Work on the left-hand side and the answer on the right-hand side changes automatically. It was this simple math that led Shah to launching Wellthy Therapeutics, a digital therapeutics company that focuses on type 2 diabetes care through its Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based mobile app. That and the fact that he's grown up with healthcare being an integral part of his life, with both his parents being professionals in the sector, and now, also patients of chronic diseases. The app uses data analytics to understand customer behavior, diet, sleeping habits, fitness and medication to make positive reiterations and provide motivational support to the patients. Click here to read more about Wellthy Therapeutics

2) The long road ahead for electric vehicles
When Piyush Goyal, former power minister, announced in April that the country would stop selling petrol and diesel cars by 2030, it gave a much-needed nudge of encouragement to the electric vehicles segment in the country. The sector is largely made up of Mahindra & Mahindra as the only major carmaker and several startups working in the space. The big question remained whether India was prepared to make such a massive shift, given that only 25,000 electric vehicles were sold in 2016 in the domestic market against 1,59,000 in the US and the fact that India is the third largest car market in the world. This story by our intern Katherine Sullivan explores some of the initiatives taken by companies to work towards a country with clean vehicles albeit in the absence of clear policies from the government so far. Sullivan talks to Chetan Maini, the founder of Reva Electric Car company, who stepped down as the CEO of Mahindra Reva five years after the Anand Mahindra-led company acquired it in 2010. Maini is now focusing on building charging infrastructure for EVs along with swappable batteries to cut down waiting time. Click here to read more.

3) Alang: Looking at a healthier future

Alang, a 10 km sandy stretch about 50 km from the city of Bhavnagar in Gujarat, is the world's largest ship-breaking yard. It is also notorious for its poor human and environmental safety standards. So much so that it finds a mention in a study commissioned by the National Human Rights Commission and conducted by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, which confirmed the poor working conditions at Alang. But now with global trade slowing down, more shipping companies have to retire and scrap more old vessels than before. But the yards in China and Turkey pay less money for the old ships because of higher operating standards. To get a better price for retired ships from yards that operate with higher safety standards, some shipping companies are trying to develop Alang as a ship-breaking yard that adheres to global benchmarks. Ship-breaking companies at Alang are also trying to upgrade their processes and infrastructure to meet better standards of environment and personnel safety in a bid to get more work at a better price. While this is a start, it is just the beginning. Read more about Alang as it embarks on a part to transformation, penned by our Associate Editor Aveek Datta.

4) Presently, India does not need driverless cars: Nitin Gadkari
Minister for Road Transport & Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari spoke to Forbes India about the considerable achievements of his ministries in the last three years under the Modi government, the various ambitious targets that the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has set. More importantly, as some of the world's tech and auto companies are striving to develop autonomous and driverless cars, Gadkari talks about his views on the concept in India and why he deems them unnecessary. Click here to read more.

5) Byju's: Swipe and learn from this near-unicorn
This story by our special correspondent Sayan Chakraborty traces the adventures of Byju Raveendran, a former service engineer to being a full-time teacher and entrepreneur, running his eponymous startup and scaling it to unprecedented heights. While a majority of India's consumer-facing startups are busy burning cash and doling out discounts to protect their market share, Byju's is comfortably accelerating to the unicorn status which doesn't seem out of reach. Click here to read about Byju's - the founder and the app - journey from being in a small classroom or an auditorium in Bengaluru to a startup bringing in Rs 260 crore in revenues (FY17) and on the path of being a profitable unicorn.

6) Bajaj Finserv: Indian consumer’s best friend
Understanding consumer behavior and spending patterns of Indian consumers and using data analytics has helped Bajaj Finserv come up with a financial services model with a twist. The company, run by Sanjiv Bajaj, has tied up with 40,000 retailers in the country selling everything from modular kitchens and mattresses to mobile phones and televisions. It has also tied up with Kishore Biyani's Future Group to convert any purchase over $75 into monthly instalments, something that makes it the Indian customers' best friend. Click here to read more