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On November 20, 2016, Chirag commented on Dare to dream: A world without lancets :

Very interesting thought, even with being invasive POC (point of care) testing and testing based on micro units of bloods itself has such vast and over-reaching implications. As far as I understand blood glucose is one of the few parameters that be tested using blood drawn from extremities, recent ordeals of Theranos seems to have conclusively shown that we are not close to a solution! I do feel that such technology, however, has the potential to disrupt both human health as well as the mammoth global diagnostics industry.

On November 20, 2016, Chirag commented on “The Everything, Everywhere, Every time Store” :

Great article Ayhan, they seem to have really done something interesting and in a (seemingly) profitable sustainable way! They seem to continue investing in the future without taking short term profitability or investor worries into account. Seems like they are taking your main recommendation very seriously!

On November 20, 2016, Chirag commented on FedEx – the next big Challenge :

Interesting article, would love to understand the size of the SenseAware application now in FedEx (% of total shipments, revenue). Given that it was rolled out more than 5 years ago I would expect it to be a large part of FedEx’s delivery system. However, historically acceptance or applicability and scalability of such products has been a challenge. From the surface, this seems to be the case for this product as well. It is seems to be a small part of FedEx Freight Segment (not reported in 10-Ks) and the segment itself seems to have been flat overall in 2016. Would love to understand how successful this product was for them.

@ludwig the tele-density in India is closer to 75-80% (TRAI: Telecom Regulatory Authority of India estimates) . However the 29-30% number is relevant smart-phone penetration (not mobile phone penetration).
Mobile phone penetration in India has actually been miraculous, the country skipped fixed line penetration (unlike more developed economies) and embraced the wireless technology directly. The payment solutions have two clear paths to success from here: 1. Continued growth of smart phones. Smart phone penetration has been growing at a rapid pace, to put the 30% penetration number in context only ~50% of Indians have a bank account. Hence reaching a penetration of 30% has been spectacular in less than a decade; 2. Adopting to a non-smart phone but mobile based mechanism for payments. It will be interesting to see where the cashless economy boom goes, however it will have limited impact on taxation compliance in the recent future.

On November 20, 2016, Chirag commented on KUVO – Connecting The Global Dance Music Industry :

Interesting Article! This seems to have many implications! (1) Improving customer satisfaction by providing more information before the purchasing decision (which club to frequent) is made; (2) It provides a global platform for upcoming artists and an even playing field; (3) Intelligence services to nightclub to help them optimize and curate their DJ roster and (4) It has potential implications on royalties of smaller dance labels. Even though, there are no plans to monetize KUVO, where do you think the opportunity lies? Is there a way to quantify their potential impact?

On November 7, 2016, Chirag commented on Levi Strauss – Taking the Water Out of Jeans :

Very interesting article! Levi’s has made substantial improvements to their climate impact and has been able generate positive press and marketing from these initiatives! This campaign was a popular one in the Indian market – “” Good example of how one can leverage the investments made to improve the impact on the overall environment, to drive consumer behavior and finally sales.

On November 7, 2016, Chirag commented on Vail Ski Resorts :

Interesting post! Seems like they are in a tough spot. Sale mix shifting towards season passes seems like a short term measure at best, given that bad weather combined with season passes will disappoint customers and have a negative impact on future sales overall. More efficient snow- making equipment also seems more suitable just for the shorter term. I think for MTN diversifying out of problem geographies is the way to go?

On November 7, 2016, Chirag commented on Making a Google Search Sustainable :

Extremely insightful article! Given proliferation of smart phones and “on the go” access in emerging and developed economies this issue might become much larger in the near future. Would love to see projections (if any) that combine this information with the exponential rise in connected devices in emerging countries to come up with the additional energy burden these devices will create.

Extremely informative article! Interesting to see that coffee houses have their fate intimately tied to climate change. I am worried that the industry might be more inclined towards distributing and improving insecticides/pesticides to address the fungus/pests rather than tacking the core issue of climate change. Securing their supplies by running a “social” effort of supporting their farmers by providing additional insecticides and pesticides will be a easier but less optimal solution to the problem. I feel that this might be one of the situations where the symptoms get treated but the core issue is left unaddressed.

On November 7, 2016, Chirag commented on Monsanto – Facing a Wicked Problem or a Major Opportunity? :

Interesting article! Definitely an interesting time to watch the company to see how the Bayer deal pans out. The pro forma entity wields more influence over the global agriculture industry than any other private firm and many governments.
However, I am skeptical about the managements commitment towards responsible business practices. Their recent stand-off against the Indian government and other competitors has been closely followed[1]. Though the motivations and context of the stand-off is different, it just makes one question whether the same management team can deliver lofty environment friendly goals at the cost of short-term financial results.


On November 7, 2016, Chirag commented on Hanes: Clean Shirts for a Cleaner World :

Very interesting take on the competitive edge, can create a significant difference if knee-jerk regulations take up management bandwidth at competitors. It is a very interesting take on “paying now for future strategic positioning”. Would love to see how this plays out.
I am a little more skeptical about the immediate cost savings of the overall initiative. Given that the $23 million savings is calculated using a baseline from 2007 (one year after the spin-off), the baseline metrics might have had some low hanging fruits built into them. Would love to know more about recent performance and savings!
Addressing climate change the post turned out to be a great lesson in strategy too!