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An Exclusive Interaction with Chandrika Behl, Managing Director, Exhibitions India Group

Chandrika-BehlConvergence India, a pioneer event is dedicated to the IT/IoT and Telecom sectors in India. It has been organized every year and this year over 1,000 companies, including 200+ startups, from approximately 40 countries, are set to participate in the expo. Alongside the expo, a series of conferences will feature 150 speakers representing a range of entities, including the Union and State governments, industry, think tanks, and academia. During an interaction with BISinfotech; Chandrika Behl, Managing Director, Exhibitions India Group elaborates the key focuses and attractions of this year’s event as this year Convergence India is about to celebrate its 30th anniversary. Also get to know which big brands and companies are set to take the centre-stage at this year’s gala expo event. Edited Excerpts Below.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of Convergence India. What can industry professionals and attendees anticipate when they attend the expo?

Since its inception in 1992, Convergence India has been a pioneering event dedicated to the IT/IoT and Telecom sectors in India. Over time, the expo’s influence has grown to encompass a diverse range of industries. When it first launched, cutting-edge sectors such as IT/ICT, IoT, Big Data, Cloud, Blockchain, and others were still in their early stages or unknown. However, the expo has emerged as the primary platform for presenting these groundbreaking technologies, making it an essential venue for startups to gain knowledge and explore the latest industry trends.

Over 1,000 companies, including 200+ startups, from approximately 40 countries, are set to participate in the 2023 iteration of the expo. Alongside the expo, a series of conferences will feature 150 speakers representing a range of entities, including the Union and State governments, industry, think tanks, and academia. The event will be attended by esteemed government officials, including ministers and senior dignitaries from the Government of India, as well as industry leaders, Smart City CEOs, city planners, mayors, ambassadors, and stakeholders from both India and across the globe. With an anticipated attendance of over 50,000 visitors, the three-day event is set to be a major highlight.

Key Attractions of the Expo:

  • The international conference will have concurrent sessions spread over three days and will focus on the government’s initiatives to develop India into a ‘Digital’ economy. Discussion areas will include upcoming technologies such as 5G adoption; the changing face of AI, Blockchain; ChatGPT; strategies to prevent cybercrime; new use cases in Telecom; the future of Digital Twin and IoT; next frontier for Digital Gaming and OTT, innovative FinTech business models, etc.
  • The expo has received support from the following ministries & Government campaigns: Digital India, Skill India, Smart Cities Mission, Swachh Bharat Mission, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Ministry of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, Ministry of Science & Technology, Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC).
  • The expo will host Country Pavilions from Russia, the United Kingdom, Slovakia and China.
  • Curated B2B meetings will be held during the expo. This value-added service will assist exhibitors in establishing new business engagements and create lucrative business opportunities through one-to-one interaction.

Can you provide more context about the co-located expos being organized?

The Mobile India expo is a leading exhibition on Mobile Devices, Accessories and Gadgets industry. It offers an unmatched buyer-seller platform enabling all participants to network with brands, manufacturers, OEMs/ODMs, new & emerging brands, corporate buyers, distributors, wholesalers, stockists, department stores, retail chains, e-tailers and end users – enabling participants to showcase cutting-edge technology, create a strong brand and develop a robust distribution channel.

  • The Internet of Things India expo is the focal point for established businesses, start-ups and tech talent to meet with top investors, influencers and professionals. It will showcase IoT innovations in the fields of smart cities, design applications, enablers, industrial IoT, data analytics and many other disruptive technologies for enterprises.
  • The Embedded Tech India expo is a platform that showcases the latest trends adevelopmentsnts in the Embedded Technology ecosystem that powers smart devices, smart manufacturing, smart transport, smart industries, smart homes, smart cities, IoT devices and demonstrations showcasing the reliability of electronic systems, IoT applications, distributed intelligence, and solutions for smart future and other technology solutions.
  • The FinTech India expo will showcase companies and institutions involved in financial technologies, including blockchain, cryptocurrency, digital banking, e-Wallets, payment gateways, point of sales (PoS) & payment solutions, cyber security, banking & insurance solutions, accounting & auditing solutions, E-commerce solutions, robotic process automation (RPA), transactional platforms, data analytics and more.
  • The Digital Gaming India expo will present emerging trends and technologies in the gaming sector, from software solutions in animations to VFX, software developers, Cloud computing, digital gaming services etc. It focuses on hardware components in chipsets for motherboards, console gaming platforms, CPU manufacturers, desktop gaming platforms, etc.
  • The ‘Startup Hub Pavilion’ at the 30th Convergence India expo will feature over 200 startups that will bring innovations across the different verticals of emerging technologies, ICT & Smart Cities technologies. There will be mentoring sessions from the pioneers of the ecosystem, and specially curated conference sessions, will be organised alongside the Start Pitch Competition and the Investor & Startup meet. Startups will generate B2B leads along with making meaningful business relations with the industry stakeholders.

Could you provide me with information on notable brands that will be participating in the show?

With time, the expo has attracted the best of the best across all segments. Some of industry leaders participating in this year’s event are: LG Electronics, Western Digital Corporation, TATA Communications, Vuenow, Arycom, Realtek Semiconductors, Micron, Amazon Pay, Airtel Payment Bank, Lenovo, Zebronics, Seagate, CtrlS, Anritsu, Cloud Infotech, BBNL, Power Grid Corporation, C-DOT, Ashtel, Syrotech, Corsis Technology, Techroutes Networks, Fujikura, Grandstream Network, GX Group, Matrix Comsec, PPC Broadband – A Belden Brand, Extreme Broadband, Software Technology Parks of India, U&I, Varni, MIVI, KDM, Sonilex and many more.

What is special about your shows and how are they different from competition?

All our events are driven by a desire to contribute towards India’s growth story. The expos draw inspiration from initiatives such as Make in India, Digital India, Start-up India, and the Smart Cities Mission to create an environment conducive for fulfilling the vision of these initiatives.

For example, when Convergence India was launched, the IT/ICT and IoT sectors in India were barely recognisable. Today we are ranked third worldwide with over 600,000 cloud experts across all verticals, including technology. The expo has played a crucial role in providing a platform for Indian IT, Telecom and BPM to forge strategic alliances with each other and international players. This helped them to achieve technological upgradation and also diversify across verticals. The expo also became the launchpad for many start-ups associated with the space, some of whom went on to become Unicorns.

Similarly, the story of the Smart Cities India expo is intertwined with the Smart Cities Mission, which has helped it to emerge as one of the most impactful events in space. It facilitates coordination between governments and technology providers to pool the expertise needed to implement and integrate the latest and innovative technologies for the public good. The expo also provides opportunities for collaboration and partnerships among the private players, including overseas participants, which is perhaps the best way of marking growth.

It is, perhaps, one of the reasons why the Smart Cities Mission under the Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs has partnered with event organisers India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO) and Exhibitions India Group to support the expo.

How have Convergence India and Smart Cities India grown to become world-class expos?

Convergence India has been leading the digital revolution from the forefront by showcasing breakthrough technologies, innovations, trends and best practices in the fields of telecom, broadcast, 5G & 6G networks, Cloud, Big Data & Analytics, AI, IoT, Embedded tech, FinTech, Digital Gaming, and much more. During this journey, we have provided an international platform for the Indian industry to grow, contribute towards nation-building, and emerge as global competitors. As we celebrate 30 glorious years, Convergence India has become synonymous with ‘Brand India’ while leveraging Industry 4.0 to build a ‘Digital and Smart India.’

Similarly, the Smart Cities India expo continues to be the game-changer and the leading platform for the technologies and solutions that are revolutionising India’s urban landscape. The expo was the first such event launched with a focus to fulfil the vision of the Smart Cities Mission and other missions associated with it. Over the years, the expo has evolved to encompass all aspects of urban development, i.e. Green buildings, clean energy, environmental solutions, water & sanitation, clean fuel, urban mobility, etc. to create a smart and sustainable ecosystem in our cities.

Both the expos have been the launchpad for many domestic companies, including start-ups, some of which have consolidated their position in the industry to emerge as Unicorns, global players and influencers.

The 2023 edition of the 30th Convergence India and 8th Smart Cities India expos is bigger and better than before with over 1,000 participants from 40 countries, including over 200 start-ups from across the nation, congregating on a common platform to exchange ideas and deliberate on the future of the industry. The event is a centralised venue to explore new business opportunities, forge partnerships, explore technological upgrades, and expand into new markets. This year, we expect to host over 40,000 visitors who will experience first-hand how business is done in probably the fastest-growing market in the world.


Nitisha Dubey

I am a Journalist with a post graduate degree in Journalism & Mass Communication. I love reading non-fiction books, exploring different destinations and varieties of cuisines. Biographies and historical movies are few favourites.

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