Month: November 2011

Weekly Business Quiz # 107

Q1. The campus placements in IIMs have been likened to what by Tata HR Chief Satish Pradhan ?

Ans. Cattle at Pushkar fair

Q2. Connect Bandit, intruder, Hayabuza..

Ans.Suzuki motorcycles

Q3. Name this luxury car model which Daimler has decided to withdraw from india ?

Ans. Maybach

. Q4Cyrus Mistry is the first Non-Indian national to head the Tatas. What passport does he have ?.

Ans. Irish

Q5. Name this detergent brand that created waves in the ’80s as competitor to Surf and is now being withdrawn.

Ans. Nirma

Q6. What is the day after Thanksgiving day called in the US ? Why is this day important for retail industry ?

Ans. Black Friday. Discount season

Q7. Verghese Kurien, the milkman of India celebrates his 90th birthday today. An easy question. How did AMUL get its name ?

Ans. Anand Milk Union Ltd

Q8. Under what brand has tanishq launched a range of low-priced jewllery for working women ?

Ans. Mia

Q9. Which co has launched the music of 3 that has the “Why this KOLAVERI di” tamil song that has gone viral ?

Ans. Sony Music

Q10. In Money market lingo, what is TED spread ?

Ans. The gap between LIBOR & US 3m treasury bill

Q11. Who has been named as the successor to Ratan Tata ?

Ans. Cyrus Mistry

Q12. Why is a 1967 study by psychologist Stanley Milgram relevant for today’s social networking world ?

Ans. The  concept of 6 degrees of freedom that separates any two humans

Q13, Name the man behind JaxtrSMS the free SMS service ?

Ans.Sabeer Bhatia

Q14. Which smartphone operating system is also known as ‘ice cream sandwich’ ?

Ans. Android 4.0

Q15. Theodore Forstmann who died recently coined the phrase ” Barbarians at the gate”. Who did he refer to as barbarians ?

Ans. The guys who do Leveraged Buyouts (LBOs)

Compiled by G.Mohan Twitter @go_mohan


Weekly Business Quiz # 106

Q1. In the Boost ad, a young boy appeared with Kapil Dev. He also went on to don the India cap. Name him.
Ans. Nikhil Chopra ( Source :GSK web-site)
Q2. The former telecom minister Sukh Ram has been convicted for receiving a bribe for a cable contract. What was the amount of the bribe ?
Ans. 3  lakh
Q3. What is TATA FIRST DOT ?
Ans. A platform for student startups
Q4 Which group has entered the retail sector with plans to launch over a lakh of small grocery outlets under the Q Shop name ?
Ans. Sahara
Q5. Which global brand has launched a controversial ad campaign showing Obama-Wen Lip kiss ?
Ans. Benetton
Q6. Raghuram Rajan and Pratap Bhanu Mehta have been awarded prizes for Economics and Pol Science. Name this prestigious prize.
Ans. Infosys Prize
Q7. My fathers watch was one. My alarm clock was one. Name this old swiss brand acquired by Titan for a mere 2 m euros.
Ans. Favre Leuba
Q8. Name this artist who accounts for 17% of contemporary art sales. His first exhibition was 32 paintings of Campbell’s soup cans.
Ans. Andy Warhol
Q9. Name this 100 year old car brand named after a swiss born racing driver and has a “bow-tie’ badge on its bonnet.
Ans. Chevrolet
Q10. Exxon Mobil is the world’s largest listed oil co. But it is only 11th if unlisted oil cos are included in terms of oil reserves. Name the #1 .
Ans. National Iranian Oil Co (NIOC) of Iran
Q11. How do we know this Korean conglomerale that started life as a noodle co and is today a group of 83 cos under a holding co Everland ?
Ans. Samsung ( it means three stars in Korean)
Q12. Add the next one in this series Archana, East West, Damania, NEPC, Paramount…
Ans. Kingfisher ( airlines)
Q13. Einstein is normally associated with theoretical physics. For which home appliance he has a joint patent with Leo Szilard?
Ans. Refrigerator
 Q14. What is common to the following @TCS , Infy Bubble, Cognizant 2.0, World of W, U&I ?
Ans. Social networking platforms of Tech cos. TCS, Infosys, CTS, Wipro and HCL respectively
-Compiled by G.Mohan @go_mohan

Weekly Business Quiz #105

Q1. Nehru’s birthday on 14th Nov is celebrated as Childrens day and also as National ________ day. Fill in the blank.

Ans. Metallurgists

Q2. In which Indian co’s mine have they found India’s biggest diamond weighing 37.68 carat ?

Ans. NMDC, Panna Mines

Q3.______ is like manure. You have to spread it around or it smells. ‘ said J Paul Getty. Fill in the blank.

Ans. Money

Q4. Which investment guru says ‘risk can be greatly reduced by concentrating on only a few holdings’ ?

 Ans. Warren Buffett

Q5. Web sites like Huffingtonpost and Firstpost do ‘curation’ ? What is it ?

Ans. Selecting news from various sources and presenting it

Q6. What is the new interest rate and new limit on PPF announced by govt yesterday ?

 Ans. From 8.0 to 8.6% and Rs 70,000 to Rs 1,00,000

Q7. The paints industry brings creative people in Paris to forecast colour trends. For 2011 it was Lime Twist. What is it for 2012 ?

Ans. Tea Dance ( a shade of red)

Q8. Name the Bollywood star who has been signed up by West Bengal state as its brand ambassador.

 Ans. Shahrukh Khan

Q9. Which silicon valley hot start up has asked its under performing employees to surrender the shares given or get fired ?

 Ans. Zynga

Q10. Which co has now got the dubious distinction of posting the highest ever loss in a quarter by a listed co ? (Rs 7845 cr only)

Ans. Indianoil

Q11. Name this Indias largest herbal drugs co that wants to remain unlisted to focus on the ‘long term’.

Ans. Himalaya drugs

Q12. Name the insurance co with whom TCS has signed the biggest IT deal by an indian co.

 Ans. Friendslife

Q13. Of the 175 routes in which our flag carrier Air India flies which are the only 2 routes it makes money ?

 Ans. Delhi-tokyo and Tokyo-Delhi

Q14. Why does Narendra Modi  agree to the govt theory that high inflation is being caused by higher GDP. As per NaMo what is GDP ?

 Ans. Gas, diesel, petrol

– Compiled by G.Mohan Twitter handle @go_mohan

An imaginary chat with Chetan Bhagat

Chetan Bhagat is India’s paperback king. `The New York Times’ says he is ” The biggest selling English-language novelist in India’s history”. He is a youth icon today. He has just released his latest book Revolution 2020. He got a few TV appearances and interviews just before launch. Last week, his publisher tried arranging a few TV shows. Unfortunately, the other youth icon Shah Rukh Khan was on all channels promoting `Ra.One’.


Chetan Bhagat thought on his feet and decided to field questions about his book on Twitter @chetan_bhagat. Given that his Klout index is over 90 and that he has over 500,000 followers, there was a huge response to this live chat on Twitter. The overwhelming response meant that many of the comments and questions remained unanswered.


Highlights of this tweet-chat, as imagined by me, are presented below. Readers may bear with constraints on the grammar and readability imposed by the 140 character limit of Twitter.


@ankur_varma A book on corruption when the issue is top of the mind of the entire country. U r a genius sir !

@chetan_bhagat Thanks. I believe in what the character Shukla-ji in R2020 says ” Life may not give the same chance twice”.

@ram_pandey I am very excited u chose Varanasi as the setting. Why Varanasi CB ?

@chetan_bhagat Varanasi is a Tier II city in UP. Huge unpenetrated market. I believe in the potential of Tier II cities. Look at Dhoni!

@madhu_singh I am fm VNS. When did you visit VNS ? Missed u ! How long were you here ?

@chetan_bhagat Great place. Loved the Ganges. I spent full 2 days there.

@meenadas33 In 2 days you could understand Varanasi so well. It appeared you lived all ur life here.

@chetan_bhagat  At IIT-IIM v r taught how to look authentic. I bought a city map & some coffee table books at the  airport.

@ajeeya121 R2020 is fabulous CBag. Is the character Raghav U ? An engineer who wants to make a career in writing and changing the world.

@mahesh_bhatt Chetan A piece of advice. FPS and 2 states were good bcoz they were ur stories. From exp. I tell u stop writing if u hv nothing new.

@chetan_bhagat Mahesh sir. Get ur point. Now that I am a celebrity how can I experience real life. I am mobbed everywhere I go.

@makkhichoos Cbag the price of R2020 is too high @ 140. Ur other books I could buy with my pocket money. Why not 95 ?

@chetan_bhagat Thanks for bringing it up. Will speak to Rupa folks. I know that my readers are college goers and unemployed youth

@deshobhaa Chetan you have done to Rupa, what I had done for Penguin. In India people want pulp fiction. Sex sells.

@frustram I will say Cbag thanks to you we are reading something better than Prof Mastram and Savita Bhabhi.

@babita You r doing a service to the nation as I have written in my blog in TOI

@chetan_Bhagat Thanks for your kind words.

@lakshmi_chaudhry Bull ! I think you are Mediocre , Middlebrow and Mahaan . Pl read  in Firstpost

@chetan_bhagat I understand my readers. I know what they want. I am a full-time writer. I am not interested in  Booker prize.

@monicagrg55 Cbag are u superstitious like Kjo ? Why does all ur book titles have a number in it ? 5,1,3, 2 and now 2020

@lillylucknow Cbag we r very angry abt comments abt ur ‘maid’ tweet. We know u r genuinely care for your maid.


@chetan_bhagat I do not hv to answer all my critics. Thru my columns in TOI and books I know I can create a revolution.

@ex_infy_empl CB, whereas we all know what Infy does. Taking on Narayana Murthy was it necessary ?

@chetan_bhagat Pl understand the  timing of his comment on IIT & coaching was 2 good to let it pass. Controversy helps.

@taran_adarsh When I read FPS, I felt it could be made into a hit movie. 3 idiots we all know. R2020 is too filmi.What’s new ?

@deshobhaa Very right. The love triangle is too close to movies like Sangam or Saagar. 2 boys and a girl, one a friend and other lover.

@jholawalla333 I bought R2020  in the rly station. Expecting politics, ideology, some radical solution. It is Mills and Boon stuff.

@chetan_bhagat I have given everything my readers want. Love, Ambition, Corruption in 300 pages of easy prose.I have sold 500, 000 copies.

@greatbong I think CBag you are in the business of writing best sellers and you do it better than any Indian author.

@chetan_bhagat I have a book release function to attend. Thanks everyone.


( This is a work of fiction)

( This post appeared earlier in The South Reports

Weekly Business Quiz # 104

Q1. Which drink traces its origin to “uisce beatha” (Scottish Gaelic) meaning ‘the water of life” ?

 Ans. Whiskey or Whisky

Q2. In 1984 there were just 3 IIMs, A B & C. In 2011 there are how many IIMs ?

 Ans. 13

Q3. ‘A diamond is forever’ was created in 1947 and named the greatest ad line of 20th century by Ad age. Name the brand.

 Ans. De Beers

Q4. Who is the largest registrar for internet domain names globally ?

 Ans. Verisign

Q5 .As per the EDS bill 2011 in how many years all govt of india services will be delivered electronically?

 Ans. five yrs

Q6. Which US co. Owns the brands Diesel, Timberland, Ernemildo Zegna etc ?

 Ans. Kenneth Cole

Q7. The question that got Sushil Kumar 5Cr in KBC. Which colonial power left India from Nicobar islands in 1868 ?

Ans. Denmark

Q8. From Dec 1 which indian city will be the only US consulate to accept and process L visas ?

 Ans. Chennai

Q9. Which international ad group has acquired the controlling stake in MUDRA that used to pride itself as a rare indian agency ?

Ans. Omnicom

Q10. Which global brokerage that runs a TVC claiming to guide thru the investing jungle is itself filing for bankruptcy ?

Ans. MF Global

Q11. Who once said ‘womens’ role is in the kitchen dressed in white like all other domestic appliances ‘?

Ans.  F1 Boss Bernie Ecclestone

With this post , the WBQ completes 2 years. Watch out for the Best of WBQ – Annual shortly.

– compiled by G.Mohan @go_mohan

Ask Ramalinga Raju

Ramalinga Raju has spent more than two years in judicial custory. Thanks to his good behaviour, the jail authorities have allowed him to use a computer. He has been also been given a mail id in the Chanchalguda mail server, where every mail is censored. Using his new iPad2 with 3G, presented to him by his wife Nandini, he answers questions from the public. Given his strength in dealing with Corporate ethics, most of the questions relate to this topic.

Q 1. (Arvind from Delhi)  Sir, Do you think what Kiran Bedi did by inflating her travel bills was wrong ?

RR : When straightforward people try to do petty theft, they get caught. At Satyam, we were inflating our books for years. We created so many fake Fixed Deposit receipts. We never got caught. I surrendered voluntarily and until I announced , no one knew. 


Q 2. (Vijay from Bangalore) I have a similar problem in my company. I know a salesman who travels by sleeper class, but claims AC- 2 Tier fare?

RR : You should be thankful that this person is travelling. I know many executives, who do not travel at all. They get their work done on phone and submit inflated travel bills to the company. I suggest, you put this salesman on the fast track. He has good potential and is set for bigger things.


Q3. (Anil from Gurgaon) I am the Finance Manager from a mid-size IT company. I routinely see many of my senior managers submitting large client entertainment bills. I often wonder how could three people have five Chicken tikkas and six malai koftas in dinner. I apprehend that he is converting liquor bills to food bills. ?

RR : Ha Ha ! That is the biggest hypocrisy in India. What is client entertainment without some liquor. It is time the companies and tax authorities accept this as a reality. The managers and restaurants are compelled to convert liquor bills to food bills. I see nothing wrong in it. Just be on the look out, if they are entertaining their mistresses /girlfriends and submitting client entertainment bills. The HP chief did that and lost his job.

Q4 ( Prabhakar from Infocity) I am a Manager in IT outsourcing company. I have the responsibility of placing software engineers in various client sites abroad. In order to meet the client and visa requirements, I am asked by my company to doctor the CVs of my engineers. When I complain about this to my colleagues, they brush it aside as an occupational hazard. What do you suggest sir?

RR : I think, you should have no qualms in doing that. This is the IT industry’s best kept secret. When the foreign company says it wants a software engineer, it actually wants a data entry operator. By taking a data entry operator’s CV and calling him a software engineer, you are doing nothing wrong. They want a data entry operator and you give them one. Only the visa authorities and prospective father-in-laws do not know that.


Q5 (Geeta from Hyderabad) I am a journalist with a local newspaper. I would like to know your opinion on the PM’s announcement about strict laws against corporate sector corruption also ?


RR : I welcome it. When I was busy managing the complex affairs of  Satyam and Maytas, I used to hear a lot of rumours about corruption in our companies. I used to hear HR guys were getting expensive gifts from private engineering colleges and placement consultants. I hear they used to give fake job offers to unsuspecting people from small towns on payment. Some of our senior officers who were entrusted with paying speed money for infrastructure contracts, often used to pocket a big share of that. I think it is a good move. But since PM is saying that, I doubt if anything will come out of it. 


Q6 ( Prasanna from Kakinada) I am an entrepreneur who is in the advanced stage of negotiating for a large infrastructure project. I have been promised the contract, provided I give a large sum of money as kickback to a Minister. I do not have such a large amount of money in black. Can you please suggest a method of paying money in white ?

RR : This is the first problem, that is challenging. I will suggest, you find out if the Minister has any relative, preferably a son. Create some shell companies in the son’s name. Then ask the shell companies to private placement of shares at a premium. Through your public limited company, you subscribe to the share issue. That way, you pay in white and be legally above board.


Q7. ( Dhiraj from Mumbai) I am a sharebroker from Mumbai. I have lost a lot of money in Anil Ambani group company shares. What do you think about three executives of ADAG companies in jail ?

RR : I think Anil did a smart thing. I am sure he would have paid a big sum to those executives to take the blame and go to jail on his behalf. He is lucky, he has an elder brother to protect him. How I wish I had one ? I was too much of a proud Kshatriya to take all the blame.


Q8 . (NCR from NCR) I hear the business environment in Hyderabad is not the same. What is your opinion on Telangana ?

RR : I am this Coastal Andhra person, who made it big in Hyderabad. The T-agitators are against people like me. For me, the world is limited to Chanchalguda and NIMS. I don’t care whether these are in Samaikhya Andhra, Telangana or in the Union Territory of Hyderabad.


Q9 . (Sonia from Secunderabad) I had read in the papers, that you play badminton to keep yourself fit in the jail. With whom are you playing  these days ?

RR : That’s right. These days,  I am playing badminton with the Reddy brothers of Bellary Though I had no business connections with them, we spent a lot of time together in the waiting hall of YSR’s bungalow. We have lots of interesting conversations, while we play Badminton.


Q 10. (Raju from Bhimavaram) Sir, we still adore you as a hero here in Bhimavaram. Now that you have been allowed to use a computer, how I wish you would write your autobiography ?

RR : I hear that a mini-publishing industry has sprung up in India writing about Satyam. I am afraid, I have nothing new to say on this. 



(This is a work of fiction)

( This post first appeared in