Partners in a changing world: Exploring business opportunities for India and Germany
2022 has seen several events converge. After two years of a global pandemic, the war in Ukraine has laid bare geopolitical shifts with profound repercussions on business. At the same time, fundamental global challenges, such as climate change, remain. Business relations between India and Germany (and the EU generally) will expand in this changing world.
For the second time, the Indo-German Centre brought together business leaders, thinkers from academia, and government representatives in Frankfurt, Germany, on 22 September 2022 to discuss challenges and opportunities for Indo-German business. This year, we focused on three overarching themes:
- Towards a sustainable and green future
- Innovation through startups and entrepreneurship
- Digital transformation and digital finance
The day featured inspiring speeches and panels with plenty of interactive sessions and opportunities to mingle, network, and exchange insights and ideas.
Conference moderator: Dr. Matthias Catón, Director of Corporate Development, Frankfurt School; Deputy Chairman, Indo-German Centre
09:00 – 09:45: Registration. Coffee and light breakfast.
09:45 – 09:55: Conference Opening
- Prof. Nils Stieglitz, President and CEO, Frankfurt School; Chairman, Indo-German Centre
09:55 – 10:00: Welcome remarks from FrankfurtRheinMain (Gold Partner)
- Dr. Kasturi Dadhe, Director, FrankfurtRheinMain
10:00 – 10:05: Welcome remarks from Partex (Gold Partner)
- Lakshmi Lalita Mohan, Co-CEO & Founder, OncoCoin AG (Partex NV company); Head, CII; Board Member, Indo-German Centre
10:05 – 10:20: Keynote Address
- H.E. Parvathaneni Harish, Indian Ambassador to Germany
10:20 – 11:05: How the next generation can shape Indo-German relations
Ambassador Harish in conversation with Indian and German students from Frankfurt School.
- H.E. Parvathaneni Harish, Indian Ambassador to Germany
- Patrick Meyer, student, Frankfurt School
- Soamya Singh, student, Frankfurt School
- Adwait Sompura, student, Frankfurt School
- moderated by Lisa Ronneburger, Director of Student and Alumni Affairs, Frankfurt School
11:10 – 12:00: Decentralized Finance: Convergence or different paths ahead for India and Germany?
Joint session with the Global Fintech Fest in Mumbai.
Despite recent setbacks, Decentralized Finance (DeFi) is all the rage. In this session, we will compare the regulatory frameworks in Germany and India and analyze how DeFi will change the banking and finance landscape. Will we see a future without banks? And will technology lead to global convergence, or could we end up with very different models in Germany and India?
- Diksha Dutta, Head of Marketing, AsiaBerlin
- Suresh Ghalsasi, Chief Operating Officer, 21e6 Capita
- Devender Maggo, Head of Retail Banking, ICICI Bank
- moderated by Saurabh Singh, Sustainability & Blockchain Research Consultant
12:30 – 13:30: Networking Lunch
13:30 – 14:15: Women as drivers for innovation
This session will examine how women drive innovation in startup companies’ leadership roles. What do women do differently, and how can we ensure that female business leaders become role models for future generations of women?
- Amrita Gandikota, Founder, PrimedinFabrik
- Anandi Iyer, Director, Fraunhofer Office India
- Ruzica Pekic, Founder, Digital Transformation Lead
- Sowmya Thyagarajan, CEO, Foviatech
- moderated by Carsten Vogel, Development Director, Frankfurt School
14:15 – 15:00: A marriage made in heaven? Matching German Mittelstand with Indian startups
The famous “Mittelstand” medium-sized companies are the backbone of German economic power. Many of these hidden champions have a long tradition and produce outstanding products in demand worldwide. India has a notable entrepreneurial spirit manifesting in the country’s vibrant startup scene. Can both sides benefit from cooperation?
- Ashish Airon, Co-founder, CogniTensor
- Vikas Goel, Vice President Operations, Tvarit
- Prof. Hermann Simon, Founder & Honorary Chairman, Simon-Kucher
- moderated by Prof. Ramakrishna Velamuri, Dean, Mahindra School of Management
15:00 – 15:45: Innovation in agriculture – How to sustainably feed a growing world population
While the growth rate is shrinking, the world’s population is still growing in absolute terms. It will continue to do so for many decades. Feeding eight billion people and counting (including some 1.5 billion Indians soon) requires innovative approaches. Not only do we need enough food, but it must also be healthy. We must produce it sustainably without depleting our planet’s natural resources. Global warming adds another challenge to agricultural production. This session will discuss possible solutions from a German and Indian perspective.
- Dr. Conrad Albrecht, Group Leader, German Aerospace Center
- Dr. Christian Garbe, Managing Director, FIZ Frankfurter Innovationszentrum Biotechnologie
- Prof. Mrinalini Kochupillai, Guest Professor and Core Scientist, International Future Lab: Artificial Intelligence for Earth Observation, Technical University of Munich
- Shikha Shah, Founder and CEO, AltMat
- moderated by Karthik Jeganathan, Director, Sri Sri Tattva Europe
15:45 – 16:30: Coffee break
16:30 – 17:15: ESG Taxonomies – challenge or opportunity for German and Indian companies?
The EU Taxonomy will have a significant impact on all companies operating in or doing business with countries in the European Union. At the same time, other countries, including India, are also discussing their own taxonomies. In this session, we will discuss the impact on Indian and Geman companies and what threats and opportunities arise from introducing these taxonomies.
- Devendra Gupta, Project Manager, Forest Stewardship Council
- Karsten Löffler, Head, UNEP Collaborating Centre for Climate & Sustainable Energy Finance, Frankfurt School
- Saumya Srivastava, Senior ESG Professional
- moderated by Dr. Kasturi Dadhe, Director at FrankfurtRheinMain
17:15 – 17:30: Conference closing and invitation to next year’s Annual Conference
17:45 – 20:30: Networking reception and get-together
Liaise with other participants in Frankfurt School’s exclusive Campus Lounge with a view over the city’s skyline and enjoy a drink and innovative Indo-German fusion cuisine.