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Pre Budget Statement: Hiren Shah, Founder and Chairman, Vertoz

“The push towards digitisation in India was truly recognised in the Union Budget 2018 when it was the main focus along with Digital India. The allocation of over INR 3000 Crore towards promotion of Digital India came as a welcome surprise to the sector. With this support, the industry witnessed confident strides in the adaption of innovative technology. Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, Machine Learning, AR and VR became part of regular conversations.
As the penetration of mobiles and internet in India increases further and coupled with global sentiments on digitisation, the upcoming Interim Budget 2019 will have to augment its focus to further the growth of the sector. With conversations around data privacy catching the attention of governments across the world, there has been an onset of conversations around data localization in India as well. Data localization means that the data generated within India will be stored with Indian borders. In order to implement this proposition and to facilitate the storage of such huge volumes of data, India will need to have better infrastructure. Considering these potential requirements, the upcoming budget might see some funds being allocated to this sector. Initiatives and schemes are required to develop such digital infrastructure and ecosystem in the country.

Also, infrastructure needs to be developed to support growth through the introduction of new technologies. Subsidies will allow for more start-ups and MSMEs to enter the sector, as well as present it as a favourable investment destination. Consequently, we foresee positive changes cascading to each and every segment associated with the digital space, including the sector we operate in – Programmatic Advertising.

Having said that, the nature of digital media buying and advertising is such that any scheme or initiative announced for any industry will benefit the sector. For example, favourable growth of the e-commerce industry will lead to an increase in their ad spends, and with digital becoming the preferred advertising platform, will lead to programmatic becoming an option for brand managers and marketers.”

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