In its effort to tap into 51 million micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME), Google India has launched new initiatives including a new training programme Digital Unlocked, Primer — new mobile application and a new tool My Business Website.
Speaking at a conference in New Delhi, on Wednesday Sundar Pichai, CEO, Google said, “Internet and digital technology will be an engine of growth for the Indian economy. Today, anyone can become an entrepreneur, a developer, or a creator, but it is important that they have the right tools and skills to digitise. We believe it is important for us to invest in training and equipping these individuals and small businesses to accelerate their journey of growth.”
Google’s new training programme, Digital Unlocked is available across online, offline and mobile. It will conduct offline training of MSMEs in partnership with FICCI. The training is certified by Google, Indian School of Business and FICCI.
“Over the next three years, 5,000 workshops will be held across 40 Indian cities. The online training comprises a set of 90 self-paced video tutorials, curated specifically for India and is available free of charge at g.co/digitalunlocked,” explained Pichai.
Further, the search giant has introduced Primer, a free mobile application. MSMEs can use the app to learn various digital marketing skills. The new app which also works offline is currently available in English and Hindi, with plans to Tamil, Telugu and Marathi versions soon.
The app is available for download through the Google Play and iOS app store.
Pichai further announced a new tool called My Business Websites, which allows small businesses to create a free, mobile website. The new tool which will be introduced later this year, will allow small businesses to create websites. It will be available in nine languages including English, Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil, Urdu, Gujarati, Kannada, and Malayalam.
Pichai also spoke about how several small businesses such as Walnut – a personal finance mobile app , Go Co-op and Maganlal Dresswalla have leveraged Google’s products and technologies including Google My Business, Google AdWords etc. “Walnut app in India saw big growth in its user base from 2 million to 5 million post demonetisation,” he said.
Ravi Shankar Prasad, minister of Information and Technology who was also present during the launch said, “we missed the industrial revolution, and then the entrepreneurial revolution because of the license raaj but we don’t want to miss the digital revolution. Rather we want to be a leader in the area.”
Prasad added that in the last one and a half years, 42 mobile manufacturing units have come up, with Noida and Greater Noida emerging as an important hub. He also urged the tech giant to work on issues like cyber-security.