Suresh Shankar on entrepreneurship, artificial intelligence and banking

Suresh Shankar, founder of Crayon Data, talks about how entrepreneurship is all about persistence and perseverance, through one of his favourite anecdotes on the Chinese bamboo tree. One that will get all you budding entrepreneurs fired up and ready to make a change! Catch him in conversation with the University of Oxford and Said Business School. Suresh Shankar also discusses ‘obvious’ opportunities in the digital banking space and the financial disruption sphere. With burgeoning amounts of unstructured data, Suresh says…

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The Kindness of Strangers – Thank you Singapore

It was 20 years ago today The Kindness of Strangers Thank you Singapore (Sung to the tune of Sgt Pepper’s…..) It was 20 years ago today That I came to Singapore to play I’ve been going round and round in life Even found myself a wife So may I re-introduce to you The guy you’ve known all along Suresh Shankar’s Happy Hearts club band. It was the first week of August 1997 that I arrived on the shores of the Lion…

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Choice and new consumer: (Article 2 in a series of 5)

The Misery of Choosing   In my last post, we talked about the growing importance of two concepts that are radically changing consumer marketing practices: The Choice Equation and the Influence Mix. The influence mix { D = f(P+M+O)}, captures the forces behind a consumer purchase decision by looking at her prior preferences and experiences (P), information from marketers (M) and inputs from other people (O). The Choice Equation on the other hand {Choice = f(Taste, Influence, Context and Behaviour)}…

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#DataMeetsDesign: the DNA of future corporate success

We live in a world of rapidly exploding tech trends. A big data world. A mobile-first world. The collision of big data and mobile creates a unique challenge of contrasts. In such a world, #DataMeetsDesign is the biggest challenge, and the biggest opportunity. Why? Take big data. In an era where data is expanding exponentially, humans are plagued with an overwhelming number of choices. Through a tech lens, reduction is the primary challenge. We need algorithms that mirror the complex…

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Data is the new oil of the Digital Economy

Everyone from geeks to CEOs is on the data bandwagon. Today, for a CEO to say, “I’m not investing in data and analytics” is the same as him saying “I’m not interested in our customers”. The real question is not whether you invest in data or not. What matters is what I call Return on Data Investment (RoDI). CEOs can announce they invested $10 mil in data and analytics and make analysts happy. But it is harder to show a…

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The age of the cockroach

I read an article, The Age of the Cockroach, on Medium and found myself completely agreeing with it. In fact, it hit a sweet spot. We all know there’s a lot of money chasing that all B2C internet and e-commerce start-ups need to do. These investments however happen at highly inflated valuations. Most of the money raised is spent on customer acquisition; where customers are basically allowed to use the company’s products for free, resulting in massive losses for the…

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Two powerful concepts that define today’s new consumer: Influence Mix and Choice Equation

Today, there’s a lot of buzz around a few words. Data: the big, the small, the relevant. Social media, contextual marketing, going viral, and influencers. Digital advertising, mobile first, e-commerce. Everyone splashes around in the shallow end of tech trends. They convince themselves that they are swimming in the deep waters of fundamental changes in consumer behavior. But very little is known about the central actor in this plot – the new consumer. Someone who is tickled pink and overwhelmed,…

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The Death of Search

Some 16 odd years ago, Google made search engines famous and ubiquitous. It’s sell-by date has come. Think about it. Search was the greatest thing in the world because it achieved Google’s wonderful vison of ‘organising the world’s information’. But now… what is the point of a million results, give or take a billion. Who can process such massive information? And why would you need a million, when none of them seem right for you? What the world needs is…

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Big data meets mobile: simpler choices on smaller screens

As we begin our journey in 2015, here are a few thoughts on big data trends for mobile devices. In the age of more, we may soon see the twilight of search 15 years ago, the defining problem of the Internet age was how do I find the information I need? This gave birth to search engines. The problem today is ‘how do I find a choice that’s right for me? One that’s relevant and that’s personalised? The emerging dominance…

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How does a Choice Engine overcome the choice problems?

Consider a typical decision – you have just arrived in a new city after a 6 hour flight, it’s 6.30 PM and you want to get a decent vegetarian meal. What do you do?You fire up Google, search for good restaurants in that city, and filter them by type, price, location etc. You search the review sites and blogs, both international and local for reviews and ratings on what might be a decent choice. You ask the hotel concierge or…

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