All posts by Navin Kabra

Event: Impact of AI/ML on IoT

Fireside chat with CEO of Espressif, a fabless semiconductor company with presence in Shanghai, Pune, and Europe, which develops cutting-edge WiFi-and-Bluetooth enabled low-power IoT solutions, including the popular ESP8266 and ESP32 connected SoCs that are used by makers, startups and enterprises for building IoT/smart things. With over 100 million IoT chipsets sold and thousands of registered companies as customers, Espressif is at the cutting-edge of IoT product innovation and deployment.

This will be a conversation about Espressif’s journey to the platform it is today, challenges for a hardware startup, the current state of IoT, and how he sees artificial intelligence and machine learning driving IoT further. It should be a great opportunity for IoT enthusiasts, startups as well as hardware entrepreneurs.

Join us for a conversation with Espressif’s CEO & founder, Swee-Ann Teo from 6pm to 9pm, on Wednesday, 19th Dec. At Kirloskar Auditorium, Bhau Institute, COEP campus, Next to Boat Club

This event is open to free, and open to all. No registration required.

PuneConnect 2018: Pune’s Largest Tech/Leadership/Startup Event 20 Oct: Register Today

PuneConnect, SEAP‘s flagship event is back in a bigger format this year. We invite you to join us for the conversations on “Future of Everything”. 25 hand-picked speakers from across the country, special keynotes and four dedicated tracks for dialogues around: startups, technology, leadership, and academia/research/innovation.

As technology advances continue to permeate the business and social world and re-defines how we do business, we believe the future of work is also bound to change in a significant way and hence we have anchored the theme for Pune Connect 2018 around this.

The detailed schedule is here, and speaker profiles are here.

To attend as a delegate, register here.
If you’re a startup and would like to demo your product in the demo hall (free for selected startups), please apply here

This is an ideal event to connect with the who’s who of the Pune Startup ecosystem. You will find lots of the senior leadership from the technology industry, startup founders, successful senior entrepreneurs, potential recruits, angels and investors from all over, potential customers, mentors, business partners, affiliates, and investors from all parts of Pune’e startup and technology ecosystem – including SEAP, PuneTech, TiE Pune, PoCC, MCCIA, IPMA, HIA, IIMA’s CIIE, and SME Joinup.


Time Session Topic Speaker Track
09:15AM-9:30AM Kick Off By SEAP President Main Track
9:30AM-10:30AM Keynote Address On Your Markets, Get Set, Go Pune….Define the Future By Pari Natarajan Main Track
10:40AM-11:40AM Keynote Address Changing nature of the consumer and its impact on the technology selection for sustaining business Vijayaraman Subramaniam Main Track
11:50AM-12:50PM Keynote Address Leadership lessons from Mt. Everest Team Giripremi Main Track
12:50PM-01:00PM Inauguration of the Startup Stalls
01:00PM-01:45PM Lunch Break

Track Wise Agenda

Time Technology Track Leadership Track Academics & Research Track Startup Track
1:45PM-02:20PM Keynote Address:

Unearthing possibilities with data

by Dr. Hanumantha Rao Susarla

Keynote Address:

How Companies Can Become Digital Leaders

By Mrutyunjay Singh

2:30PM-03: 30 PM Panel Discussion:

What are the challenges with data?

Panelist: Rohit Shrivastawa, Milind Barve, Satish Patil, Moderator: Sandeep Suryavanshi

Keynote Address:

Lead The Change Through Social Entrepreneurship

By Ramesh Padmanabhan

Panel Discussion:

Laying the path for Research, Academia and Industry collaboration

Panelist: Dr. Bhalchandra Puranik, Dr. Neeraj Gupta


Samir Patil

03:30PM-04: 15 PM Fireside Discussion:

Blockchain and the Future of Enterprise

Pandurang Kamat, Bharani Subramanium, Moderator: Navin Kabra

Panel Discussion:

The Changing Face Of Leadership

Panelist: Seema Gopal, Mangesh Kirtane, Dr. Kiran Bala, Moderator: S. Ramprasad

Keynote Address:

The emerging relevance of Liberal arts to Indian Industry

by Anita Patankar

Panel Discussion:

PuneConnect Winner Alumni what happened afterward…

Panelist: Nitin Gupta, Akshay Mehrotra, Madhukar Bhatia : Moderator: Seema Joshi

Time Session Topic Speaker Track
04:45PM-05:15PM Startup Shootout Top 5 Startups will pitch their startup in front of Jury Jury: TBA Main Track
05:15PM-05:45PM Awards Winner of Pune Connect will be announced Guest Of Honour will present the awards Main Track


PuneConnect started in 2011 as a purely startup focused event, and quickly became one of Pune’s top startup events. However, after a break in 2017, we decided to expand the scope so that different parts of the industry/ecosystem (the established companies, the startups, academia, and leaders and mentors from elsewhere) could really connect with each other.

See the PuneConnect website for more information about past PuneConnects.

Fees and Registration

This event costs Rs. 1200 (Rs. 1600 after 13th October) if you want to be part of the lunch, Rs. 500 if you want to just attend second half of the event (without lunch; Rs. 800 after 13th October), and Rs. 300 for students (full day) and is free for students (half-day).

The event is from 9:00am to 6pm at the Westin, Pune.

Register here.

PuneConnect 2018: Call for Startups: Apply Now

PuneConnect, which earlier was a purely startup focused event is now returning this year in an even bigger, expanded format. The event is now a technology and startup event with 4 different tracks—startups, technology, leadership, and academia. So, startups showcasing their products at this PuneTech will have a much more diverse audience to pitch to, and the potential to find prospective customers, mentors, employees, co-founders, and investors.

The startup track of PuneConnect is now in its 7th edition, and is one of Pune’s most important events for startups. Early stage startups get a chance to showcase their products and services to larger companies in Pune, senior and juniors from the technology industry, VCs and angel investors from all over the country, and others from the ecosystem. PuneConnect 2018 is on 20th October 2018, at Westin, Pune. It is a full-day event where selected startups will be provided with a table in the demo hall.

This event is free for startups selected by PuneConnect. If you are unsure of whether this event is appropriate for you or not, please go ahead and apply, and our selection committee will figure out whether you’re a good fit or not. Please apply right away. The last date to apply is 1st October 2018.

Any startup company that has a product that they would like to demo, should submit a proposal at (The product must be ready/working on the date of the event.) A panel of selectors drawn from experts in the industry will select the most promising startups who will be allowed to set up a demo at PuneConnect, in Westin, Pune, on 20th October 2018.

There will be a special quota for students – i.e. startups whose founders are still students will be given special consideration, so if you know someone in this category, please forward this info to them.

Benefits to selected startups include:

  • Exposure to Pune’s top companies (potential customers and potential mentors)
  • Exposure to Pune’s software developer community (potential employees and potential co-founders)
  • Exposure to Venture Capitalists and Angel Investors who are being invited to the event
  • Press and media coverage before and after the event

PuneConnect started in 2011 and is usually held in late October/early November every year (except for a gap in 2017). For the last few years, we’ve been selecting about 25-30 startups for demos out of 150+ registrations that we receive. Click here for more information about past PuneConnect events.

Media Coverage: In past PuneConnects, Economic Times, Indian Express, The Financial Express, the Financial Chronicle, Business Standard, and the top Marathi newspapers Sakal and Maharashtra Times all have carried detailed articles about PuneConnect and the companies.

PuneConnect is a joint initiative of Software Exporters Association of Pune (SEAP), TiE Pune, (POCC), PuneTech, and NASSCOM, SME Joinup, CIIE Ahmedabad, and MCCIA Pune – basically all the important players in Pune’s startup ecosystem. PuneConnect represents a one-of-its-kind activity that bridges the gap between the new companies and the established ones.

Apply now. It costs nothing. Please apply right away. The last date to apply is 1st October. (Note: this is just a call for applications for the demo hall. A separate announcement will be sent out for registrations for attending the event as a delegate.)

Event: 75-year celebration for Prof. Mathai Joseph, and talk by Pankaj Jalote on Research in Engineering

ACM-India (Association for Computing Machinery) And CSI-Pune (Computer Society of India Pune Chapter) invites you for an event to felicitate Prof. Mathai Joseph on his 75th birthday. 16th June, 4pm, at Persistent Systems, SB Road.

With a distinguished career that spans industry (TRDDC) and academia (TIFR, University of Warwick), Mathai is among the few who have witnessed the story of the Indian software industry unfold.

On this occasion, there is also a talk by Pankaj Jalote, director of IIIT Delhi (earlier HoD CS at IIT-Kanpur).

A Career in Research in Engineering

Talk by Prof. Pankaj Jalote

There is sometimes a lack of clarity about what research is, how is engineering research different from engineering, and what does it mean to be an effective researcher. In this talk we will first discuss what research is, relationship between science and engineering research, difference between academic and industrial research, between applied and basic research, etc. Then we will discuss how research is evaluated and some aspects of building an effective engineering research career.

About the Speaker

Pankaj Jalote is the Director of IIIT-Delhi (Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology Delhi). Earlier he has been an Assistant Professor at University of Maryland College Park, Chair Professor at IIT Delhi, and Head of Computer Science Department at IIT Kanpur. He has also been Vice President at Infosys for 2 years, Visiting Researcher at Microsoft in Redmond for 1 year, and Interim Vice Chancellor of Delhi Technological University (DTU) for six months.

He has a B.Tech. from IIT Kanpur, MS from Pennsylvania State University, and Ph.D. from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is the author of five books, some of which have been translated in Chinese, Japanese, Korean etc, and the Indian edition of his text on Software Engineering was adjudged the bestselling book by the publisher. His main area of interest is Software Engineering. He has served on the editorial boards of IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, Intl. Journal on Empirical Software Engineering, and IEEE Trans. on Services Computing. He is a Fellow of the IEEE and INAE.

followed by

Felicitation of Prof. Mathai Joseph

Prof. Mathai Joseph will be in conversation with Anand Deshpande, Persistent and Venkatesh R, TRDDC.

Registration and fees

The event is on Saturday, 16th June, at 4pm. At Dewang Mehta auditorium, Bhageerath, Persistent Systems, SB Road.

This event is free and open for everyone to attend. Please register using this link:

Event: Pune Data Conference, 31 March

Pune Data Conference 2018 is a one-day conference on 31st March, at Westin Pune, from 8:30am to 6pm. It features 3 tracks of talks from topics in big-data, AI and ML, IoT, Cloud and Containerization.

For more details, check out the schedule of the talks, and the list of featured speakers. This is the second year of PDC. You can also check out the highlights of PDC 2017.

CROSS Open-Source Awards

PDC 2018 will also feature the CROSS Awards—Corporate Responsibility for Open Source Software, to recognize the open source contributions to the community and motivate others to become open source contributors.

The 3 categories, in which you can nominate yourself or your organization are:

1. Best Individual Contributor Award
2. Best Local Meetup Group Award
3. Best All Round Community Contributor Award

Please nominate yourself or your organization here.

Fees and Registration

This is a paid event. You can buy tickets here until 29th March.

Other Details

The event is on 31st March, at Westin Pune, from 8:30am to 6pm. For further details, see the event website, or email:

Event: Computational Science Symposium – 1-day conference on CS for Science from ThoughtWorks’

This year, ThoughtWorks’ Engineering for Research arm is organizing the first Computational Science and Engineering Symposium. The forum will host scientists and researchers from across scientific disciplines, alongside engineers and technologists to discuss and design solutions for computation challenges. We see this as the beginning of a computational-science community building exercise in Indian context.

The Symposium will delve into the three important trends that are disrupting the field of computational science: Data Deluge, Artificial Intelligence, and Complex Modeling and Simulation.


8.00 AM – 9.00 AM Registration and Breakfast
9.00 AM – 9.30 AM Welcome Note, E4R Vision and TWI Commitment Sameer Soman, Managing Director, ThoughtWorks India; Harshal Hayatnagarkar, Computer Scientist, ThoughtWorks India
9.30 AM – 9.45 AM Opening Keynote Dr.Raghunath Mashelkar, National Research Professor, Chairman, National Innovation Foundatin and President, Global Research Alliance
9.45 AM – 10.30 AM Computational Astronomy and Astrophysics: Challenges and Opportunities Dr. Yashwant Gupta, Centre Director – National Centre for Radio Astrophysics, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Pune
10.30 AM – 10.45 AM Tea Break
10.45 AM – 11.30 AM Data-driven scientific discovery (4th Paradigm of Science) Dr. Vidyadhar Mudkavi, Director – Council of Scientific & Industrial Research, 4th Paradigm Institute, Bengaluru
11.35 AM – 12.20 PM Large-volume and Long-term Data Management Dr. Aparna N, Group Head – Data Centre, National Remote Sensing Centre
12.20 PM – 1.15 PM Lunch Break
1.15 PM – 2.00 PM A small boy and a hammer: Case studies in Data-Intensive science Dr. Mihir Arjunwadkar, Director – Centre for Modeling and Simulation, University of Pune
2.05 PM – 2.50 PM Trends in Data Storage & Analytics Dr. Milind Bhandarkar, Founder CEO of Ampool Inc.
2.50 PM – 3.05 PM Tea Break
3.05 PM – 4.05 PM Breakout sessions 3 tracks: Data Engineering (Dr Neeraj Gupta & Milind Bhandarkar), Data Science + Artifical InteIligence (Dr. Abhijit Kulkarni & Devangana Khokhar), Modeling and Simulation (TBD)
4.05 PM – 4.35 PM Vote of Thanks Unmesh Joshi, Head of Technology, ThoughtWorks India
4.35 PM – 5.30 PM Open Forum Q & A and Networking

Event Details

The event is in Pune, on Saturday, 24th March, from 8am to 5:30pm, Thoughtworks office, Yerawada, Pune.

The event is free, but by invitation only. To request an invitation register here.

Event: TiECON Pune – Indian Startup Ecosystem Conference – 20/21 April

TiECON Pune is one of the top startup conferences in the country, in its 6th year, will be held on 20/21st April, 2018. The venue is The Westin Pune. The early
bird registrations are now open. Click here to register. You can use the special code ‘TiE-PuneTech’ to get a discount.

The speakers for this year have not yet been finalized, but TiECON always does a good job of putting together a great line-up. Earlier TiECons have seen iconic speakers like N.R. Narayana Murthy, Rajiv
Bajaj, Ronnie Screwvala; this is in addition to lots of sessions on starting up, funding and growing your ventures, excellent networking opportunities. Also, you can periodically check this website to see updates on the speakers and sessions as and when they get confirmed.

As a part of TiECon Pune, this year there is a dedicated track for women entrepreneurs and soon-to-be entrepreneurs. This is an opportunity to network with inspiring women entrepreneurs driving home businesses as well companies across diverse industries such as education, technology, media, and entertainment. There will also be awards for women entrepreneurs.

Check the TiECON 2018 website will have updates and details. Click here to buy tickets (discount code: ‘TiE-PuneTech’)—registrations for past participants have started, and early bird registrations for first-time attendees will open soon.


Event: Understanding Israel’s startup ecosystem: Lessons for India —by Amit Paranjape

Venture Center and present a talk by Amit Paranjape on what the India can learn from Israel’s startup ecosystem, on Saturday, 3rd March, at 3.45pm at Venture Center, NCL. The talk is free, but registration is compulsory

Abstract of the Talk

Amit recently visited Israel at the invitation of the Embassy of Israel in Delhi, to participate in a startup delegation. The goal of the delegation was improve startup to startup and ecosystem level contact between India and Israel.

Israel is a small country with many geographical and geopolitical challenges. It has made amazing strides in tech, core research and startups. Driven by excellent government support, a great entrepreneurial culture, and a good industry ecosystem, Israel has become a true ‘startup nation’.

This talk will be focused on understanding Israel’s startup ecosystem, some key reasons for its success, and important lessons that India can learn from it.

About the Speaker – Amit Paranjape

Amit is an entrepreneur and a technology professional based in Pune. He has been working in the Software/IT area for over 20 years. He completed his B.Tech in Mechanical Engineering from IIT Bombay, and his M.S. in Manufacturing Systems from University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Amit worked for over a decade in Manufacturing & Supply Chain Software at i2 Technologies in Dallas, in various leadership roles. He moved back to India a decade back and has been actively involved with startups in Pune. In addition to mentoring and advising early state startups, Amit is also involved in his own startup venture, ReliScore, in the skills assessment space.

Amit is a co-founder of

Amit has a variety of interests including Technology, Science, healthcare, economics, history, geopolitics & strategic affairs. He is very active in blogging, social media and tweets regularly across a variety of topics at @aparanjape

Event Details

The event is on Saturday, 3 March 2018 from 3.45 pm to 5 pm. Venue: Lecture Theatre, Venture Center, 100 NCL Innovation Park, Pashan Road.

The event is free, and open for anybody to attend. But registration is compulsory

Event: “The cryoEM revolution in structural biology” by Richard Henderson (2017 Nobel, Chemistry)

IISER Pune is pleased to announce a public lecture by the 2017 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry, Prof. Richard Henderson (MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK), on:

The cryoEM revolution in structural biology

Abstract: In the last few years, single particle electron cryo-microscopy (cryoEM) has experienced a quantum leap in its capability, due to improved electron microscopes, better detectors and better software, and this is revolutionising structural biology. Using the technique invented by Jacques Dubochet and his colleagues, a thin film containing a suspension of the macromolecules of interest is plunge-frozen into liquid ethane at liquid nitrogen temperature, creating a frozen sample in which individual images of the structures can be seen in many different orientations. Subsequent computer-based image analysis is then used to determine the three-dimensional structure, frequently at near-atomic resolution. Prof. Henderson will show examples of some recent structures, and discuss remaining barriers to progress. CryoEM is already a very powerful method, but there are still many improvements that can be made before the approach reaches its theoretical limits. Prof. Henderson will also include some historical perspective on how he became an electron cryomicroscopist.

Fees, Registration, and Logistics

This event is open to all. No registration required.

The event is on Sunday, January 21, 5pm, at Sir. C. V. Raman Auditorium, Lecture Hall Complex, IISER Pune

Event: Electric Cars, Self-Driving Cars, and Next Generation Transportation Technologies, 22 Jan

IESA (India Electronics and Semiconductor Association) presents a tech event focusing on next generation technologies in the transportation sector, including electric cars, battery technology, autonomous and connected vehicles, and related topics, on Monday, 22 Jan, 5pm to 7pm at MCCIA, SB Road.

The talks and speakers are as follows:

  • Adoption of EV in USA and opportunities in India, Dr. Rajiv Mathur, Head of Smart Transportation Programs at ProspectSV, San Jose, CA.
  • Next Generation Technologies in Automotive Electronics, Mr. Amit Jain, CEO and Exec Director, Advanced Electronics, Technology and Development, UNO Minda, NK Minda group.
  • Electronics Technology in Off-Highway vehicles, Mr. Devendra Bahirat, Head, John Deere Electronic Solutions, India and China

Adoption of EV in USA and opportunities in India

Abstract: Consumer electric vehicles have been in the US market since 2011, and have seen increasing acceptance supported by government policy coupled with financial incentives for consumers. While nearly all major OEMs have some EV offering, or plan to in the near future, market forces such as dropping oil prices, lack of EVSE and electric grid capacity have the potential to derail the growth trajectory of EV adoption. On the technology front, a breakthrough in inexpensive, high capacity and quick charging battery can accelerate faster adoption. More recently active research has now shifted to autonomous and connected vehicles. We will discuss this and related topics in this presentation.

Speaker Profile: Dr. Rajiv Mathur is the Head of Smart Transportation Programs at ProspectSV, responsible for many fronts from client engagements to operating ITS Signal Lab and helping accelerate new technology demonstrations in the TIZ. Working with the City of San Jose, and RSM, an innovative technology start-ups, he has facilitated sensor deployment at a city intersection to determine granular road usage data collection and for visualizing traffic flows in 2D and 3D. Rajiv is collaborating with California Dept of Transportation (CalTrans) in bringing leading industry partners to utilize and enhance the Connected Vehicles test bed in Palo Alto, CA. Prior to ProspectSV, he spent a year at Bay Area Climate Collaborative, as an Encore Fellow working on a variety of new EV program initiatives. Prior Rajiv had a three decade plus career at Intel Corporation in Santa Clara in a diverse array of technical and management positions related to silicon process and device modeling, and simulation. Most recently he served as Program Director in Intel Labs’ University Collaborative Research division where he managed Intel’s academic collaboration to several academic research centers at top tier universities, both in US and Europe. Rajiv holds a B.Sc. degree from St. Stephens College, (Delhi, 1974), an M.Sc. from Indian Institute of Technology (Kanpur, 1976) and Ph.D. from Carnegie-Mellon University (Pittsburgh, 1981), all in Physics.

Electronics Technology in Off-Highway vehicles

Abstract: Electronic components are widely used in Agricultural and off-highway vehicles in developed countries since 1990s. Advance technologies like GPS, Power Electronics and auto steer are also being adopted since last couple decades. Productivity and yield improvements are the main drivers behind the introduction of these technologies. We will discuss some of these examples. We will also look at some examples in India and what are the challenges that we face in this region in terms of technology introduction.

Speaker Profile:Devendra is associated with John Deere since April of 2000. Over the past few years he has successfully held numerous positions in the area of Electronics in the US and India. In his current role, he is heading John Deere Electronic Solutions, India and China. In is current role he has set up manufacturing plant for Electronic control units which are used in India and also exported to other John Deere units globally. Devendra is an active member of SAEINDIA for last several years. He led various activities of SAEINDIA OFF-HIGHWAY board during his tenure as the chairman of the board. Devendra completed Executive General Management from IIM, Bangalore, and holds degree in Electronics and Telecommunications from Pune University.

Organized By

  • Mr. Ashok Chandak, IESA Past Chairman
  • Mr. Niranjan A. Pol (Member, Board of Directors and Exec Council), IESA and IESA Auto CIG CoChair
  • Mr. Sanjay Gupta, IESA Auto CIG Co-Chair

Registration, Fees, and Logistics

The talk is free, and open to all. Please RSVP at: +91 80 41473251/+91 9535022268/+91 9900243972 Gaurav K Punjabi +91 9900919234

The talk is on Monday, 22 January from 5pm to 7pm, atSumant Moolgaokar Auditorium, No. 1 (A Wing, Ground Floor) 505, A-Wing, MCCIA Trade Tower, ICC Complex, 403, Senapati Bapat Road, Pune.