Solaris – A grand success

The inaugural management fest of IIM Udaipur, Solaris, was a two day extravaganza held on the 7th and 8th of November. The fest was entirely conceptualized and executed by the student body and earmarked the exponential growth the college has seen since its inception. The fest encompassed a wide array of activities from summits, workshops to umpteen competitions. The summits and workshops covered all domains of management and were graced by industry veterans and provided huge impetus for learning. The competitions too provided an interesting mix ranging from testing participants on core domains such as finance, marketing to a short film making competition and the high competence level helped bring out the best in the students.

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The first day started with an address from the director of IIM Udaipur, Prof. Janat Shah. He outlined the key focus areas of the institute’s growth and how the concept of Solaris was directly in sync with the college’s focus on holistic growth. He emphasized on research, transformation and contributing to society as the key pillars of growth of the institute. Prof. Shah’s address was followed by an enriching talk from industry behemoth and keynote speaker, Mr. Subir Gokarn( recently appointed executive director of the IMF). He helped provide a comprehensive view of India’s growth potential and the means to eradicate the present frailities to exploit this potential.

The keynote address was followed by the first summit, The Leadership Summit. This is the flagship event of the Media and Industry Interaction Cell of the institute and as in the preceding three editions, this time too, the summit had industry veterans such as Mr. Unnikrishnan(CEO, Thermax), Mr. Sandeep Budhiraja( Country Head, MMR Research Worldwide),Mr. Ajay Gupta( COO, Decimal Point Analytics) and Mr. Manish Rastogi( Head, Metro Cash and Carry) attending. Their speeches helped provide detailed perspectives on specific industries and the macroeconomic situation. They helped provide unique interplays on the central theme “Evolve” by helping elucidate as to how companies consistently break through existing norms and bring about innovation in all spheres to cope with the present times.

Samvaah , the marketing conclave organized by the marketing club Marclan, was the other summit held on the first day. The theme for the event was “The Future of Marketing”  and had a keen focus on the advent of new marketing techniques in view of the tried and tested concepts becoming obsolete in the present scenario. The conclave had industry marketing wizards such as Mr. Ramamoorthi (Managing partner at Ogilvy and Mather), Mr. Abhishek Joshi (Director- Digital Marketing and Customer Acquisition at Redbus), Mr. Atindriya Bose (Country Head of Sony entertainment) and Ms. Gayatri Ojha (Brand Communications & Insights Head – M-Pesa at Vodafone India).They emphasized on the dynamic nature of the marketing field and the practices needed to remain abreast with this dynamism. The speeches covered a wide array of topics such as digital marketing, new age advertising and also marketing techniques to popularize novel initiatives such as M-Pesa.

The second day commenced with Arth-Samvaad, the Finance Summit which was organized by Finomina, the finance committee of the college. The presence of industry stalwarts such as The Chief Economist at YES BANK– Dr. Shubhada Rao, Associate Director at NVS Brokerage- Mr. Kamlesh Mehta and Executive Director of IDBI Bank Ltd.– Mr. N.S. Venkatesh helped provide the ideal platform for future financial managers to interact with them and help understand the intricacies of the financial world. The panel discussion was on the topic “Currency Chaos: Where will it lead to?” where the industry experts helped decipher the intricacies and position of the Indian Rupee along with the market swings brought in by the Chinese Renminbi. The panel discussion was followed by Mr. Deepak Mohanty(Executive Director of the RBI) addressing the audience on the objectives of the central bank and how the RBI has coped with global financial pressures in the past. Mr. Mohanty helped enrich the audience regarding the key financial indicators and how performance on these indicators is a sign of growth. The summit concluded with the dignitaries unveiling the finance magazine-Arthaarth and hence concluding another successful edition of the summit.

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The final summit of the fest was Technovate, the IT-Entreprenuership Summit which focused on the booming world of startups and how technology was the key enabler for this boom. The industry leaders in attendance were Mr. Manoj Sharma the Chief Technical Officer of Quikr, Mr. Vishal Verma the Operations and Logistics Manager of Uber, Mr. Anil Joshi of Unicorn India Ventures, Ms. Aditee Rele, the Lead in Technical Evangelism at Microsoft, Mr. Piyush Poddar, the Director of Professional Services at Axelerant and Ms. Lalitha Yanamandra, the General Manager of Enterprise Services & Delivery at MartJack and they spoke on the topic “Evolution of entrepreneurs in IT”. The summit was an extremely engaging medium as the panel discussions helped shed light on various facets associated with startups i.e. investment , target market, evolving technology etc. Mr. Anil Joshi, founder of early stage investment provider, Unicorn India Ventures, too provided inputs on the investment cycle. The summit helped educate budding entreprenuers of the essential parameters to start a successful enterprise and was a huge success.

The various competitions and workshops were held across the two days and provided ample opportunities for learning and testing one’s competencies. The various competitions included events that tested core concepts such as Vitt-Sangram, the finance case study competition and marketing events such as Juxtapose, the ad-making event to events such as the short film making competition which was judged by eminent director Mr. Vibhu Puri. The competition was extremely intense as a number of teams were from other top B-schools such as IIM Ahmedabad, Symbiosis, IIM Amritsar etc. The students of IIMU too gave their best and bagged laurels in several events. A number of workshops were held too such as the Dabbawala workshop, the Consultimg workshop etc which were attended in great numbers as students had the chance for close interaction with industry veterans. The Dabbawala workshop in particular was a huge hit as Mr. Vijay Aggarwal provided an in depth study of the world famous supply chain system of the Dabbawalas.

The two day inaugural fest was thus organized on a very grand scale even though the college is in its nascent stage. The various summits and workshops proved to be ideal grounds for learning and understanding of the various facets of the corporate world. The competitions tested competencies to the hilt and hence proved to be ideal for the best minds of the country. The smooth conduction of the event in itself provided umpteen challenges but the coordinated efforts of the student body and everyone associated with the institute helped the IIM Udaipur fraternity pull it off. Hence, Solaris was a huge success and it certainly set the benchmark for other top B-schools to emulate.

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