Digital Unlocked: Google CEO Sundar Pichai unveils platform to leverage SMBs in India

Google held a special event today in India called Digital Unlocked. At the event, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced a new initiative which focuses on giving a boost to small and medium businesses in India.

According to Google, SMBs or small and medium businesses play an important role for India's economy as 37 percent of the country's GDP is contributed by them. There are about 51 million SMBs in India out of which 68 percent are still not online. Google believes that having a digital backbone massively increases the reach on a local as well as global level. Out of the 32 percent Indian small and medium businesses that have gone digital, 51 percent today serve beyond city boundaries and have seen two-times growth in profits.

Pichai said, "The internet is a powerful equaliser and we are motivated to bring the benefits of information and technology to as many people as possible. Building for everyone and making it available in the hands of as many people is at the heart and core of what we do. And we do by investing in open ecosystems."

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To give a boost to SMBs, Google has partnered with FICCI and announced Digital Unlocked. It is a training program to empower upcoming and existing Indian SMBs with essential digital skills that enable them to get online and start using the internet to grow their business.  The process is fairly simple and only requires one to register on the Digital Unlocked website. The program is being offered in three formats, online, offline and mobile.

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Business owners opting for the online program get a package of about 90 videos, roughly 6 minutes each which guides them as to how they can reach more consumers using the digital route. Similarly, an app called Primer will be available for Android and iOS which will offer basic and advance mobile training.

The training material will be available offline and in English and Hindi languages. Google said that more languages like Telugu, Gujarati will follow. As for offline training, Google is planning to host about 5000 workshops over the year which will include one day-8 hour training for businesses. Interested business owners can go to the Digital Unlocked website and look for the nearest workshop and register for one starting today.

Updated Date: Jan 04, 2017 12:54 PM