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USA India Business Summit 2020 organized virtually

December 2020
USA India Business Summit 2020 organized virtually

Given the pandemic, organizers of UIBS and presenting partners, Georgia Tech Global Forum (GTGBF) decided to hold the 11th USA India Business Summit digitally as a scaled up version.

  [Left] Dr. R. A. Mashelkar, world renowned scientist.

Sixteen sessions were conducted internationally to deliver the full two-track, two-day program along six themes with forty-eight speakers and eight moderators. Interrelated themes addressed in 2020 program were: The Southeastern United States as an Emerging Global Manufacturing Region; Innovation in the Pandemic and Post-Pandemic Period; Cyber Security and Securing the Essential Information Technology Infrastructure; Reshoring and Nearshoring Global Supply Chains: Issues at the Heart of the Trade and Offshoring Debate; Covid-19 ‘s Impact on Digital Transformation and Its Future; and India Goes Global.

Opening keynote by Dr. R.A. Mashelkar, Former Director General of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research and Former Chairman of National Innovation Foundation, India was aptly titled “Science, Technology & Innovation for Covid-19 in India.” World renowned eminent scientist Dr. Mashelkar presented an exemplary case of how India is dealing with this black swan pandemic with frugal innovation. Dr. Mashelkar, who was a member of the Scientific Advisory Council to the Prime Minister for over thirty years, has been honored with Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan, and Padma Vibhushan – three of the highest civilian honors given by the Govt. of India.

USA-India Summit  RLP-Headshot__Dec_2020.jpg

Second day’s keynote speaker was Ravi Saligram, President & CEO, Newell Brands. Saligram comes to Newell Brands with an extensive background in consumer brands, omnichannel commerce and global operations. In his session “Onwards & Upwards: Leading in turbulent times,” he first highlighted ‘Roadmap to Address Key Strategic Issues’ that he as a CEO of Fortune 500 company envisaged and then concluded with key messages that in his company—People (Are) First, Leadership Matters, Innovation is Key & Omnichannel— is the way forward.

 [Right]  Honorable Robb Pitts, Chairman, Fulton County Board of Commissioners.

In his video message, Honorable Robb Pitts, Chairman, Fulton County Board of Commissioners thanking UIBS Chair, highlighted that Fulton County is the place to do business for Indian companies as it provides a rapidly growing platform. Out of the 29 counties in Metro Atlanta region, Fulton County is home to 1-in-3 jobs and generates 40 percent of all wages in the region. Fulton County is home to nine Fortune 500 HQs and 19 Fortune 1000 HQs. He said new companies from abroad are consistently moving into Fulton County because of diverse and inclusive community that provides top talent, affordable cost of living, and high quality of life.

Dr. Swati Kulkarni UIBS 2020.jpg

The session, “India Goes Global”, of UIBS provided a unique mirror and benchmark to assess how India is leapfrogging its economic development and accelerating modernization with unique innovatory excellence.

 [Right] Hon. Dr. Swati V. Kulkarni, Consul General of India, Atlanta.

Hon. Dr. Swati V. Kulkarni, Consul General of India, Atlanta, delivered closing keynote remarks and also presented UIBS Awards virtually. She spoke about growing India-U.S. relationship in all spheres, and how India is managing the pandemic. She said that we are at the launch pad of a technological revolution which is already transforming the way we work, how we conduct our lives, address health issues, manufacture, distribute, create well-being, and relate to one another in the public and private spaces.

Dr. Swati Kulkarni UIBS 2020.jpg

[Left] Ravi Saligram, President & CEO, Newell Brands.of Commissioners. 

According to GTGBF Co-Chair Dr. McIntyre, the Fourth Industrial Revolution has the clear potential of raising global income levels, improving the quality of life for large swaths of population around the world while implementing key components of sustainable development. In responding to these opportunities but also to the threats posed by Covid-19 environment, all economic and societal factors are called upon so to work cooperatively while creating public-private partnerships to ride this new wave at the local, regional, national and international levels.

UIBS Co-Chair, Ani Agnihotri said that UIBS has always sought to draw out the nexus of interconnections between the United Sates and India. He said, the United Sates is one of the leading innovating nations, given its economic resilience and technological talent pool. It is a trend setter and the repository of creativity in addressing socio-economic issues through entrepreneurship while India is transforming its own economy through advanced technologies and economic reforms, bridging development gaps at an increasing speed.

The two-day event was seen by over 900 attendees, including live streaming by two institutional partners in India. Some fifty MBAs from Georgia Tech participated in one or more sessions.

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