Ola Launches ‘Auto Unnati’ – A comprehensive benefit program for auto driver partners

Introduces tailor-made business benefits that guarantee INR 40,000 in earnings for auto driver partners every month, in addition to a unique insurance program



Bengaluru: Ola, India’s leading and one of the world’s largest ride-sharing companies, today launched ‘Auto Unnati’– a comprehensive benefit program for its Auto driver partners. As a part of this initiative, Ola Auto partners will benefit from Ola’s unique and comprehensive ‘Chalo Befikar’ insurance program, family welfare initiatives, and performance-based financial benefits. Built out of local insights gathered over time, ‘Auto Unnati’ is Ola’s first such program that aims to create a robust financial cover and business benefit assurance plan that enables a healthy professional ecosystem for Auto driver partners and enhances their entrepreneurial journey.

Ola’s in-trip insurance program ‘Chalo Befikar’ for auto driver partners is an industry-first initiative that provides a cover of INR 500,000 at zero-cost for every Ola Auto driver partner. It entails daily benefits in case of hospitalisation to cover business losses, takes care of outstanding auto loans, and children’s education. This program will help in achieving a sustainable livelihood, benefiting the partners and their families. Starting in Bengaluru, ‘Chalo Befikar’ will be rolled out in a phased manner to different cities in the coming months.

Key Features of ’Chalo Befikar’ program:

  • Covering outstanding vehicle loan obligation of driver partners, irrespective of the loan amount
  • Children’s education fee (up to INR 24,000 per year) per child till class 10th – over and above the cover of INR 500,000
  • Business loss reimbursement of up to INR 750 per day for 3 months, in case of temporary disability

Auto Unnati’ is further strengthened by a tailor-made performance-based financial benefit program that guarantees earnings of INR. 40,000 to all auto drivers. This program has been launched exclusively for Ola Auto driver partners in Bengaluru and will inspire them to focus more on customer service and increase their earning potential.

Speaking on the launch of Auto Unnati, Siddharth Agrawal, Senior Director and Head Auto category at Ola said, “Ola has consistently co-created multiple avenues to foster entrepreneurship in the driver partner ecosystem. Our aim is to create an inclusive environment in which driver partners can operate and thrive. ‘Auto Unnati’ is a milestone program in the same direction that will offer better financial and emotional stability for thousands of auto drivers in Bengaluru. He added, “With the assurance of financial benefits and free insurance cover, Auto Unnati will elevate Auto Drivers’ overall wellbeing and that of their families.”

Speaking on the program Christy Thompson, an Ola Auto driver partner, said, “I am delighted to be a part of Ola’s ‘Auto Unnati’ program that is aimed at providing increased earning opportunities as well as cater to the needs of my family and their wellbeing. I have been driving with Ola for more than 2 years now and I feel the benefits and opportunities the platform offers are immense. With the introduction of the insurance policy, I will have an assurance that if tomorrow something happens to me, my family is financially secure and that my children’s education won’t stop. Additionally, the business benefits will bring consistency in my earnings and help me save more and plan a better future for my family.” 

Ola Auto was launched in Bengaluru in 2014. Since then, the category has seen multi-fold growth making it an integral part of the city’s transport ecosystem. Over the years, Ola has brought in cutting edge technology like Wi-Fi to the auto platform and has revamped the whole experience for the customers as well as drivers partners. 

About Ola Auto:

Launched in 2014, Ola has over 2,00,000 Auto rickshaws registered on its platform across 73 cities, and plans to launch in more cities in the coming months. The Ola app for Auto driver partners is available in English and Indic languages including Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Marathi, Tamil, and Telugu. Every Auto driver partner on the Ola app goes through a KYC verification and training across behavioral, etiquette, and technology to make the ride experience seamless for customers.

About Ola:

Founded in 2011 by Bhavish Aggarwal and Ankit Bhati, Ola is one of the world’s largest ride-hailing companies. Ola integrates city transportation for customers and driver-partners onto a mobile technology platform ensuring convenient, transparent, and quick service fulfillment. Ola is focused on leveraging the best of technology and building innovative solutions ground-up, that are relevant at global scale. Notably, in 2016, Ola Play the world’s first connected car platform for ride-sharing was launched, transforming commuting experiences and setting the tone for global innovation in this space. Beyond offering a highly personal experience for users during their rides, Ola Play also allows its partners like Microsoft, Apple Music, Sony Liv amongst others, to build a high quality interactive and productive experience for its users. Using the Ola mobile app, users across 110+ cities, can connect with over 1,000,000 driver-partners across cabs, auto-rickshaws, and taxis. Driven by a hyperlocal approach, Ola is committed to its mission of building mobility for a billion people.

Via Ola Press Release

Doosan Yonkang Foundation Awards 770 Million Won in Scholarships to 169 Students

Doosan Yonkang Foundation Chairman Yong Hyun Park (front row, sixth from left) delivers scholarship certificates to the students at the 2018 Doosan Yonkang Foundation Scholarship Awards Ceremony.

On Feb. 20, Doosan Yonkang Foundation (Chairman Yong Hyun Park) held the 2018 Doosan Yonkang Foundation Scholarship Awards Ceremony at the Hotel Skypark Dongdaemun, presenting 770 million won (or $716,000) in scholarships to 169 high school and university students.

The scholarships were awarded to disadvantaged students who demonstrated outstanding academic performance. Among the scholarship recipients, 81 college students will participate as mentors in the Doosan Yonkang Scholarship mentoring program, established in 2013, to support students from educationally alienated backgrounds at children’s welfare facilities.

“Through the Doosan Yonkang Foundation scholarship program, we hope to make a positive impact on the students and help them grow up to become invaluable members of society,” Chairman Park said.

Since its establishment in 1978, Doosan Yonkang Foundation has offered scholarships to underprivileged students who have shown excellent academic performance. So far, more than 6,000 high school and university students have benefited from the scholarship program.

About Doosan Group

Doosan Group is a South Korean conglomerate company. In 2009, the company was placed 471st in the Fortune Global 500. It has been included in the Forbes Global 2000 companies from 2007. It is the parent company of ŠKODA power. Doosan was ranked 4th among the “World’s Best 40 Companies 2009” list, released in the latest issue of BusinessWeek, the U.S. economics magazine in October 2009.

Doosan’s core businesses are based on ISB (Infrastructure Support Business). Doosan’s Infrastructure Support Businesses are made up of five subsidiaries: Doosan Corporation, Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction, Doosan Infracore, Doosan Engineering & Construction and Doosan Engine. These subsidiaries provide electrical power, desalinated drinking water, construction equipment, advanced machinery, defense supplies, houses, highways and bridges, chemical processing equipment and industrial engines.

For more information visit www.doosan.com


Eaton makes it easier to access aftermarket automotive fuses, previously only available through dealership networks


PITTSBURGH, PA — Power management company Eaton today announced the availability of Bussmann™ series automotive multi-pole, multi slow-blow and battery terminal fuses that provide the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) equivalent to those installed in a variety of popular vehicles. Eaton’s new Bussmann series automotive fuses enable warehouse distributors and jobbers to access fuses that were, up until now, primarily available only through dealerships and online parts websites.

“With the widest offering of automotive fuses, we are making it easier for customers to access technology once exclusive to the dealership network,” said Dan Miller, retail marketing manager for Bussmann series consumer products at Eaton. “Distributors and automotive suppliers can now offer an aftermarket solution to establish their business as the go-to source for previously hard-to-find replacement parts.”

Building upon one of the largest offerings of OEM products and accessories in the marketplace today, Eaton now offers the following Bussmann series aftermarket automotive solutions:

  • Multi-pole fuses (MPF) – Original equipment equivalents to those installed in popular Nissan®, Infiniti®, Toyota® and Lexus® vehicles.
  • Multi slow-blow (MUSB) fuses – Direct OEM replacements for fuses found in 2004 to current-model Acura®, Ford® and Honda® vehicles.
  • Battery terminal fuses (BTF) – Designed to provide original equipment equivalents to those installed in popular Chrysler®, Ford®, Lexus®, Lincoln® , Mercury®, Mitsubishi®, Nissan® , Scion®, Subaru®, Suzuki® and Toyota® vehicles.

In addition, Eaton is offering distributors a new Bussmann series planogram in 2018 with the ability to stock 14 percent more product. Combined with new, compact product packaging, header and reorder backer tags, the planogram is designed to enable retailers to meet the demands of the market by offering more circuit protection products within the same footprint.

Eaton develops and manufactures Bussmann series critical circuit protection, power management and electrical safety products designed to provide innovative circuit protection solutions. To learn more about the new automotive fuses, contact your local sales representative or visit Eaton.com/bussmannconsumer.

Eaton is a global leader with expertise in power distribution and circuit protection; backup power protection; control and automation; lighting and security; structural solutions and wiring devices; solutions for harsh and hazardous environments; and engineering services. Eaton is positioned through its global solutions to answer today’s most critical electrical power management challenges.

Eaton is a power management company with 2017 sales of $20.4 billion. We provide energy-efficient solutions that help our customers effectively manage electrical, hydraulic and mechanical power more efficiently, safely and sustainably. Eaton is dedicated to improving the quality of life and the environment through the use of power management technologies and services. Eaton has approximately 96,000 employees and sells products to customers in more than 175 countries.


Dana Incorporated elects veterans of Tesla and Deere to its board of directors

Two Long-serving Directors Also Announce Retirements

MAUMEE, OhioFeb. 20, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Dana Incorporated (NYSE: DAN) announced that its board of directors has elected two new members – veterans of Deere and Co. and Tesla Inc. – to serve on the board effective immediately.  Additionally, two long-serving directors have announced their pending retirements from the board.

Dana Incorporated logo. (PRNewsFoto/Dana Incorporated)

Michael J. Mack, 61, recently retired from Deere & Co., where he had served as chief financial officer; president of the company’s Worldwide Construction & Forestry Division; and most recently as group president of John Deere Financial Services, Global Human Resources, and Public Affairs.  He also held leadership roles in dealer systems, business development, engineering, purchasing, manufacturing, marketing, and finance.

Mr. Mack earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from Iowa State University and also holds a master’s degree in business administration in finance, operations, and statistics from the University of Chicago.  He will serve on Dana’s Audit Committee and Compensation Committee.

Diarmuid B. O’Connell, 54, spent the last 11 years at Tesla, most recently as vice president of business development.  One of the longest-serving executives at the automaker, he also served as chief of staff to the assistant secretary of state for political military affairs in the U.S. Department of State.  He also held management positions with Accenture, Young & Rubicam, and McCann-Erickson.

A graduate of Dartmouth College, Mr. O’Connell earned master’s degrees in business administration from the Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and international relations from the University of Virginia.  He will serve on Dana’s Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, as well as the Compensation Committee.

“We are pleased to be adding these two distinguished business executives to our board,” said Keith Wandell, non-executive chairman.  “They are exceptional leaders with strong financial acumen, international experience, and a deep understanding of the markets Dana serves.  Mike and Diarmuid bring unique knowledge to Dana as we continue to execute our electrification strategy and expand our presence in the off-highway and industrial markets.  Their collective experience will be invaluable.”

In addition, Terrence J. Keating and Mark A. Schulz have decided to retire from Dana’s board, effective at the conclusion of the annual meeting of shareholders, April 26.  Messrs. Keating and Schultz both joined Dana’s board in 2008.

“I would like to sincerely thank Terry and Mark for their decade of service to Dana.  I speak for the entire board of directors when I say that their guidance and insight has been of tremendous value as the company has grown to the strong, profitable company it is today,” Mr. Wandell added.

About Dana Incorporated
Dana is a world leader in highly engineered solutions for improving the efficiency, performance, and sustainability of powered vehicles and machinery.  Dana supports the passenger vehicle, commercial truck, off-highway, and industrial markets as well as industrial and stationary equipment applications.  Founded in 1904, Dana employs more than 30,000 people in 33 countries on six continents who are committed to delivering long-term value to customers.  The company reported sales of more than $7.2 billion in 2017.  Based in Maumee, Ohio, the company’s headquarters operations were selected as a “Top Workplace” by The (Toledo) Blade for the last two years.  Dana is ranked among the Drucker Institute’s listing of the 250 most effectively managed companies.  For more information, please visit dana.com.


Mahindra to make an additional investment of over Rs. 500 crore for Electric Vehicles and Electric Vehicle Components in Chakan as part of expansion efforts


Mumbai, February 19, 2018: Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd (M&M Ltd), a part of the US $19 billion Mahindra Group, announced in the presence of the Government of Maharashtra, that it would make an additional investment at its Chakan plant in Maharashtra. As part of its expansion plans, the company will invest over Rs. 500 crores in its Electric Vehicle (EV) Project under the new EV Policy of the Government of Maharashtra.

The investment for EV and EV Components is in addition to its ongoing expansion plan in Chakan which includes an initial investment of Rs. 6,500 crores. This additional investment of Rs. 500 crores will be utilized towards product development and capacity enhancement for electric vehicles and related components.

The MoU was signed by Shri Sunil Porwal, Additional Principal Secretary (Industries), Government of Maharashtra and Dr. Pawan Goenka, Managing Director, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. in the presence of Shri Devendra Fadnavis, Hon’ble Chief Minister, Government of Maharashtra and other dignitaries present at the Magnetic Maharashtra Conference currently underway in Mumbai.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Pawan Goenka, Managing Director, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. said, “We are delighted to announce the next phase of our Electric Vehicles expansion plan at Chakan and would like to thank the Government of Maharashtra for its new EV Policy which is a proactive step in electric mobility. The implementation of projects under this EV Policy will certainly make the state a leader in manufacturing of EV and EV components, promoting greater use of these vehicles. We have no doubt that the state will attract large EV related investments and emerge as a front runner in the EV race.”

Dr. Goenka further added, “The Mahindra Group along with Mahindra Electric Mobility Limited (MEML) is at the forefront of promoting electric mobility which could result in a paradigm shift in the passenger commuting segment, considerably mitigating air pollution. I am sure that with this expansion, the Mahindra Group will continue to play an integral part in the development of not only the region of Chakan but the state of Maharashtra, as well as the Indian auto industry, in time to come. We would like to showcase for the whole country the viability and benefits of EV through our EV Project. This is the next step towards the journey of achieving Mahindra’s vision of the “Future of Mobility” and encompasses the “5C” framework of Clean, Convenient, Connected, Clever and Cost effective. We are thankful to the Government of Maharashtra for their continuous and unstinted support.”

About Mahindra

The Mahindra Group is a USD 19 billion federation of companies that enables people to rise through innovative mobility solutions, driving rural prosperity, enhancing urban living, nurturing new businesses and fostering communities. It has a leadership position in utility vehicles, information technology, financial services and vacation ownership in India and is the world’s largest tractor company, by volume. It also enjoys a strong presence in agribusiness, aerospace, commercial vehicles, components, defense, logistics, real estate, renewable energy, speedboats and steel, amongst other businesses. Headquartered in India, Mahindra employs over 2,40,000 people across 100 countries.


Maharashtra State Govt signs an agreement with Virgin Hyperloop One with an intent to build hyperloop between Mumabi and Pune

  • Pune-Mumbai Route Will Support 150 Million Passenger Trips Per Year And Help India Boost Its Economic Competitiveness Through High-Speed Transportation Innovation and Job Creation
  • Construction Will Begin With An Operational Demonstration Track

MUMBAI, INDIA, February 18, 2018 — Virgin Hyperloop One today announced the Indian State of Maharashtra’s intent to build a hyperloop between Pune and Mumbai beginning with an operational demonstration track.

Virgin Group Founder and Virgin Hyperloop One Chairman Sir Richard Branson announced the Framework Agreement in the presence of the Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis to begin the development of the route. This historic signing at the Magnetic Maharashtra event was also attended by Virgin Hyperloop One board members and key investors Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, CEO and Group Chairman of DP World, and Ziyavudin Magomedov, Chairman of Summa Group.

Recognizing the Maharashtra government’s contribution to the country’s economy, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “51 per cent of total investments in India have come to Maharashtra, and the state is attracting global investors. The state’s overall development in the past few years is a shining example of change thinking and improving conditions in the country. Maharashtra government was ahead of all other Indian states in terms of infrastructure spend and the state is on its way to achieving its bold vision of a trillion dollar economy.”

“I believe Virgin Hyperloop One could have the same impact upon India in the 21st century as trains did in the 20th century. The Pune-Mumbai route is an ideal first corridor as part of a national hyperloop network that could dramatically reduce travel times between India’s major cities to as little as two hours,” said Sir Richard Branson. “Virgin Hyperloop One can help India become a global transportation pioneer and forge a new world-changing industry.”

The hyperloop route will link central Pune, Navi Mumbai International Airport, and Mumbai in 25-minutes, connecting 26 million people and creating a thriving, competitive megaregion. The high-capacity passenger and cargo hyperloop route eventually will support 150 million passenger trips annually, saving more than 90 million hours of travel time, and providing citizens with greater opportunities and social and economic mobility. The hyperloop system will also have the potential for the rapid movement of palletized freight and light cargo between the Port of Mumbai and Pune, creating a robust backbone for on-demand deliveries, supply chains, and next-generation logistics.

The Pune-Mumbai route could result in USD $55 billion (INR ₹350,000 crores) in socio-economic benefits (time savings, emissions and accident reduction, operational cost savings, etc.) over 30 years of operation, according to an initial pre-feasibility study completed by Virgin Hyperloop One. The 100% electric, efficient hyperloop system will ease severe expressway congestion and could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 150,000 tons annually.

“With Virgin Hyperloop One, we can create a sustainable infrastructure that will enhance the State of Maharashtra’s competitiveness and attract new investment and businesses,” said the Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis. “The Pune-Mumbai hyperloop route will be an economic catalyst for the region and create tens of thousands of jobs for India’s world-class manufacturing, construction, service, and IT sectors and aligns with Make in India initiatives.”

The Pune-Mumbai hyperloop project will begin with a six-month in-depth feasibility study which will analyze and define the route alignment including environmental impact, the economic and commercial aspects of the route, the regulatory framework, and cost and funding model recommendations. The feasibility study will build upon the findings of the pre-feasibility study signed in November 2017 between the Pune Metropolitan Regional Development Authority and Virgin Hyperloop One.

The project will enter a procurement stage upon the successful completion of the feasibility study to determine the public-private partnership structure. Construction of the Pune-Mumbai hyperloop route would commence after procurement and will be completed in two phases, beginning with an operational demonstration track built between two points on the route. The demonstration track will be constructed in two to three years from the signing of the agreement and serve as a platform for testing, certifying, and regulating the system for commercial operations. The second phase will target to complete construction of the full Pune-Mumbai route in five to seven years. Future projects could also extend the route to link central Pune with the New Pune International Airport and Jawaharlal Nehru Port in Mumbai with Pune’s industrial economic zones.

“The Pune-Mumbai hyperloop project will ultimately be executed by a public-private partnership which will save taxpayer money while delivering a transport option that will help the State of Maharashtra support economic growth, improve sustainability, and meet the transport demands,” said Kiran Gitte, CEO of the Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority.

“We have always believed that India would be a tremendous market for hyperloop. The Pune-Mumbai route is one of the strongest economic cases we have seen to-date,” said Virgin Hyperloop One CEO Rob Lloyd. “The State of Maharashtra has made a strong commitment to building the first hyperloop route in India. We are looking forward to partnering with the State as well as our partners to make the Pune-Mumbai route a reality.”

For the signing photo, route map, fact sheet, and b-roll click here. Additional media images can be accessed here.

About Virgin Hyperloop One

Virgin Hyperloop One is the only company in the world that has built a fully operational hyperloop system. Our team has the world’s leading experts in engineering, technology, and transport project delivery, working in tandem with global partners and investors to make hyperloop a reality, now. Virgin Hyperloop One is backed by key investors including DP WorldCaspian VC Partners (part of Summa Group), Virgin GroupSherpa CapitalAbu Dhabi Capital GroupSNCFGE VenturesFormation 8137 VenturesWTI, among others. For more information, visit www.virginhyperloopone.com.


Cooper Standard Names DeBest President, Advanced Technology Group, to Accelerate Material Science Innovations


NOVI, Mich., Feb. 8, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Cooper Standard (NYSE: CPS) today announced the appointment of Jeffrey A. DeBest to the newly created position of president, advanced technology group. Based at the Company’s global technology center in Livonia, Mich., he reports to Jeffrey Edwards, chairman and CEO. DeBest was also appointed a member of Cooper Standard’s Global Leadership Team.

In his new role, DeBest will lead the Company’s Advanced Technology Group, responsible for accelerating and maximizing the value stream of Cooper Standard’s material science innovations in non-automotive markets.

“With his extensive operations, engineering, portfolio management and leadership background, Jeff brings the unique skillset required to foster the success of our new Advanced Technology Group,” said Edwards. “Our material science advancements have the potential to transform products across many industries, with near term focus in the construction, wire and cable, and footwear markets, and I’m pleased that Jeff is onboard to lead this endeavor.”

Prior to joining Cooper Standard, DeBest served as chief operating officer of APM Terminals B.V., one of five companies within the Maersk Group of Copenhagen, Denmark. In that position, he had full operational responsibility for the company’s more than 100 terminals and depots, as well as managed its transition from a holding company into an operating company. While at APM Terminals, DeBest held numerous board positions with APM regional companies. He also served as a senior vice president of A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S, where he was a member of its Global Leadership Council.

From 1997 to 2014, he held a series of leadership roles of increasing responsibility at Johnson Controls, Inc. Most recently, he served as group vice president of the auto supplier’s worldwide interiors group. He started his career at Prince Corporation, later purchased by Johnson Controls, as the service parts manager.

DeBest earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in marketing from Adrian College in Michigan, a Masters of Business Administration degree with a finance emphasis from Western Michigan University and an Executive Management Certificate from the University of Notre Damein Indiana. Since 2013, he has been a member of Adrian College’s Board of Trustees, currently servicing as vice chairman.

About Cooper Standard
Cooper Standard, headquartered in Novi, Mich., is a leading global supplier of systems and components for the automotive industry. Products include rubber and plastic sealing, fuel and brake lines, fluid transfer hoses and anti-vibration systems. Cooper Standardemploys approximately 32,000 people globally and operates in 20 countries around the world. For more information, please visit www.cooperstandard.com.