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Infosys launches platform for retail industry

Special Correspondent
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Proctor & Gamble Director (Global Business Services) Damon Frost (right) and InfosysFounder and Executive Chairman of the BoardN. R. Narayana Murthy at the launch ofTrade Edge in Bangalore on Monday.—PHOTO: G. R. N. SOMASHEKAR
Proctor & Gamble Director (Global Business Services) Damon Frost (right) and InfosysFounder and Executive Chairman of the BoardN. R. Narayana Murthy at the launch ofTrade Edge in Bangalore on Monday.—PHOTO: G. R. N. SOMASHEKAR

Infosys, on Monday, announced the launch of its new retail trade platform, TradeEdge. The platform, developed in association with FMCG major Proctor & Gamble, is targeted at the emerging markets including India, said N. R. Narayana Murthy, Executive Chairman, Infosys.

The platform would enable FMCG companies have ‘greater visibility’ of their sales flowing through their distribution and retail channels, Mr. Murthy said. The platform would also provide ‘insights’ to FMCG companies to exchange information about sales, inventory and products sold through their distributors, he added.

Distribution costs now account for about 18-25 per cent of the final cost of products sold to consumers and it is the second highest component of final cost, after raw materials, Mr. Murthy pointed out. Consumption levels in emerging markets were increasing at a faster pace compared to the developed world and within the next two decades emerging markets would account for half of global consumption. Global companies, seeking a foothold in emerging markets, needed to react to the needs of people in those markets, he observed.

Global FMCG companies needed to ‘leverage’ technology to achieve their objectives in the emerging markets, Mr. Murthy said. “Many companies are drowning in data, but are starved of insights,” he said, referring to the need to harness analytics, which would make their distribution system more efficient.

Damon Frost, Director, Global Business Services, Proctor & Gamble, told The Hindu that that his company had been working for nearly three years to build the platform.

“Our data was scattered across the enterprise and our distributors, but now the platform would enable us to get accurate and timely visibility about sales,” Mr. Frost said. He said Infosys had played a role in developing Distributor Connect initiative, now part of TradeEdge. “The platform’s primary advantage is that it results in actionable insights,” he said.

‘A good example’

Mr. Murthy said the development of the platform was ‘a good example’ of Infosys’ objective of achieving growth through ‘non-linearity’. He reiterated the company’s long-term aspiration of earning revenue shares of one-third each from products and platforms, consulting and from services.

At present, Infosys earns about 5 per cent of overall revenues from products and platforms.


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