Birla Sun Life MF launches Fixed Term Plan-Series DE

Birla Sun Life Mutual Fund new issue closes on 11th July

Birla Sun Life Mutual Fund has launched Birla Sun Life Fixed Term Plan-Series DE, a close-ended income scheme.

The investment objective of the scheme is to generate income by investing in a portfolio of fixed income securities maturing on or before the duration of the scheme. The tenure of the scheme is 367 days.

The new issue closes on 11th July. The minimum investment amount is Rs5,000.

CRISIL Short Term Bond Fund Index is the benchmark index. Kaustubh Gupta is the fund manager.


Intex: Good marketing offer wasted

The stories feel very incomplete. If Intex didn’t have the budget for long duration ads, the exercise should have been approached very differently. Right now, it’s neither here nor there

Here is yet another example of a reasonably good marketing strategy frittered away because of poor advertising work.

Intex, the mobile handsets maker, has released multiple ads for their new phone which enables you to make video calls. And they promise you can do this without applying for the expensive 3G service.

Before I come to the ads, a quick point. Most 3G subscribers are bitterly complaining about the sad quality of connectivity. And video call users report more drops than conversations. In that scenario, you can only imagine the quality of video calls minus 3G. But I digress.

The slogan for Intex's campaign is: 'Jo bolna hai, mooh pe bol'. An obvious thought for a video call. What helps Intex's cause is that because the handset does not offer any other significant features, the communication becomes single-minded by default. I watched three commercials. In each one, a person says something naughty to the call receiver-something that the caller would normally hesitate to say when he/she comes face-to-face with the person.

In one ad, a chap calls his prospective pa-in-law and demands that he give the permission for the fellow to marry his daughter. Else, the youngster threatens, he'll elope with the girl. In another ad, an employee calls his boss and declares he's taking the day off, because the weather is wonderful. In the third ad, a husband calls his wife, who's sitting very bored at home, and says that he'd rather party in the night than come home to her.

While the ads manage to communicate the video call feature, they are totally uninspiring and dull. The situations are very predictable and the humour immensely weak. Even if you are the sort who laughs at just about any joke, you may just flash a half smile on first exposure. Thereafter, it's a yawn. Also, these stories feel very incomplete. If Intex didn't have the budget for long duration ads, then the exercise needed to have been approached very differently. Right now, it's neither here nor there.

Bottom-line: A cool marketing offer: Video call without 3G. Should help Intex phones sell like hot cakes (and I am assuming they are priced reasonably). But a poor communication strategy and a lackluster execution blows things up for the marketer. The Intex managers should video call their ad agency guys and demand that they get back to the drawing board. If they are hesitating to say that in person, jo bolna hai, mooh pe bol, Sirji!


Exports jump 46.4% to $29.2 billion in June

During the first quarter of the current fiscal, exports grew by 45.7% to $79 billion and imports jumped by 36.2% to $110.6 billion, leaving a trade gap of $31.6 billion

New Delhi: India's exports registered a robust growth of 46.4% year-on-year in June to $29.2 billion on account of increasing demand in Western markets, reports PTI.

Imports, too, grew at a high rate of 42.4% to $36.9 billion, leaving a trade deficit of $7.7 billion for the month, according to government data.

"$29.2 billion figure is a very, very high number for exports. Virtually all sectors grew well," commerce secretary Rahul Khullar told reporters here.

During April-June 2011-12, exports grew by 45.7% to $79 billion and imports shot up by 36.2% to $110.6 billion, Mr Khullar said.

During the first quarter of the current fiscal, the trade deficit stood at $31.6 billion.

The exporting sectors that registered strong growth during the quarter include engineering, petroleum products, gems and jewellery, readymade garments and electronics.


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