EFU General wins Quality King Award

KARACHI (PR): EFU General Insurance Limited (EFU) has been conferred 'Quality King Award' in the category of 'Best General Insurance Company' by the Consumer Eye Pakistan.

The award was given to those organizations whose performance remained outstanding throughout the year 2017, as Pakistan's Top Quality Service Provider, the King in its respective category.

Quality King Award is distinctive recognition for only Top Quality Product or Top Quality Service as single champion in their category whose accomplishments have made significant achievement in maintaining highest quality standard.

Today, with over 85 years of winning the customers' trust EFU is Pakistan's largest and the oldest general insurer, always ready to go an extra mile to serve better.

EFU General has always been providing the full range of insurance service to fulfill all of its customers' needs whether they are commercial or individual clients. EFU has built a diversified customer base, enhanced its expertise and stood by its promises always.

In the year 2017 EFU crossed the Premium (including Takaful Contribution) of Rs.20 billion. It is the first general insurance company in the history of Pakistan to achieve this milestone.

OPPO launches flagship phone Find X

LAHORE (PR): OPPO, a leading global smartphone brand, launched the OPPO Find X at the Louvre Museum in Paris.

The Find X is OPPO's flagship smartphone, with a breakthrough design and full array of innovative technologies that highlight the company's constant pursuit and exploration of the future smartphone. It will also be launch soon in South Asia.

OPPO also announced a global, strategic partnership with Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. ("Lamborghini") at the Find X launch. This is the first exclusive strategic partnership between a leading smartphone brand and a premium supercar brand. The OPPO Find X Automobile Lamborghini Edition was unveiled at the event.

During the event, OPPO also officially announced its entrance into the European market to broaden OPPO's overseas presence. France, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands are the first four European markets slated for OPPO products.  

OPPO Find X Perfects the Fusion of Art and Technology Powered by the Qualcomm(r) Snapdragon(tm) 845 mobile platform, the OPPO Find X has a 6.42-inch panoramic arc screen.

with an industry-leading screen ratio of 93.8 percent and features full stealth 3D cameras on the front and back of the smartphone body.

 

The Stealth 3D Cameras use a sliding structure that gives the phone a natural, seamless design for unparalleled smooth handling. Moreover, the OPPO Find X boasts 16MP and 20MP Dual Cameras and a Color OS 5.1 AI Intuitive System.

The Find X features OPPO's "O-Face" facial recognition technology that uses structured light for facial identification. The technology is 20x more secure than fingerprint security and is useful for mobile payments. Thanks to a partnership between OPPO and Alibaba, Alipay payment is available for financial transactions on the Find X. OPPO's O-Face technology also provides users more lifelike and natural 3D camera effects for superior photo editing and Omoji 3D facial expression functionality for social and chat apps.

 Making business sense

Two years ago, Amneh Shaikh Farooqui and Angela Braid -both development professionals- threw their net far and wide to bring in crafts workers from all over the country onto a common online platform, to open up access to the mainstream market. The platform, Polly and Other Stories, has a precursor: Polly and Me, a brand started in 2005 by two Australian sisters, Angela and Catherine Braid. Catherine left Pakistan a few years later, while Angela decided to stay on, to work in the development sector.

Angela and Amneh met while working for Entrepreneurs, a project supported by USAID, with a focus on microenterprises. The two worked on women and textiles, and their efforts paid off, as linkages were forged with as many as 17 mainstream brands for home-based artisans.

Sadly, the linkages did not survive when the project wound up. "We thought why we should just let it go at that" says Amneh "Here's an opportunity for us to actually do something." The two women decided to step in and start an online platform to connect the groups of artisans they had already worked with. "The products were already finessed," says Amneh, "They were amazing. We wanted to bring them online to give them an assured market." That is how Polly and Other Stories began, and grew from strength to strength. 

"When you buy a product from a small business," says Amneh, "The money you give them won't go towards buying a yatch for the CEO. It will go into paying the electricity bill and sending children to school. This is true of rural artisans and small urban entrepreneurs. You're actually helping to run a household when you buy from these people."The inclusive nature of the platform gives a voice to small producers spread out all over the country. Starting with 20 businesses in 2015 and going live in 2016, there are now 65 businesses online. "We knew it was going to be e-commerce from the start," says Amneh. "Most women producers in the crafts sector have domestic responsibilities and often can't leave the home space. Online access gives them a window to the world. At the same time, online networks gave us a way of working across Pakistan that is really cost effective."

Once Amneh and Angela had their network in place, they could use technology for quick communication. They utilize Skype and Whatsapp to keep track of product development and stay in touch with their partners. Quality control is always an issue in the crafts sector, and online checks and guidelines have helped Polly and Other Stories to overcome this barrier.

Amneh and Angela tried pop-ups in brick and mortar stores in Islamabad, to supplement online sales, but were surprised to find that store sales far exceeded online sales in volume. They recast their growth plans to include brick and mortar stores."E-commerce is a useful tool," says Amneh, "but it's not the only tool."Growth is important, not just for the benefits it will bring to the producers in terms of added income, but in terms of establishing economies of scale. "When we work with small businesses we give them channels to come to market. But our impact is a fraction of what we would like it to be," says Amneh. "We have the infrastructure, it is ripe to grow and just needs the green light."

And Karandaaz has given their growth plan the green light, by offering funding to support the first brick and mortar store. Karandaaz promotes access to finance for small businesses, to help generate broad based employment in Pakistan, and fosters economic participation of women with the help of the United Kingdom's Department for International Development (DFID) and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

SMIU celebrates completion of 75 years

KARACHI (PR):  Sindh Madressatul Islam University on Thursday celebrated the completion of 75 years of elevation of Sindh Madressatul Islam to the level of college on June 21, 1943 by the hands of its illustrious alumnus Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. Addressing the meeting held to celebrate the day, Dr Muhammad Ali Shaikh, Vice Chancellor of Sindh Madressatul Islam University said that exactly 75 years ago on this day, 21 June 1943, Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah had inaugurated "Sindh Madressah College" elevating his Alma-Mater from school to college. He said that the Quaid had specially come from Bombay to Karachi for this occasion and was visibly observed sentimental during his speech delivered at the inaugural ceremony. "On that occasion the Quaid had also donated some amount for his Alma-e-Mater and had appealed to the audience that they must support SMI, because the institutions can't be run without financial support," Dr Shaikh said. 

Dr Muhammad Ali Shaikh further said that Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah had spent a longest period of his academic career at SMI ranging from 1887 to 1892. This is why, he had developed a deep association with his Alma-Mater, which, he had exhibited on various times including during writing his Last Will in 1939 in Bombay, where he had bequeathed one third of his residual property to SMI and after four years of it, he had come to SMI to upgrade it.

In the last days of his life, the Quaid had also visited his Alma-Mater, because he seems very weak in a picture, which is preserved in the Jinnah Museum of SMIU.

"Today the Alma-Mater of Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah has become university, and is being considered as one of the modern and best quality universities of the country," Dr Muhammad Ali Shaikh said added that today we proudly follow the legacy of founder of Pakistan by working on his ideals, because, without following his ideals, the country and the nation couldn't progress and move forward accordingly.