ISB plans efficiency for S Railway

Chennai-headquartered Southern Railway (SR) has sought Indian School of Business’ help in reducing carbon emissions, enhancing revenues, and identifying areas for investment among others. ISB is likely to submit its report and recommendations by the end of January.

About 15 students in four teams, as part of their experiential
learning programme (ELP), recently visited Chennai to study the
existing advertisement revenue channels of SR, its technology, also
energy usage patterns. SR came into existence in 1951 through the
merger of Madras and Southern Mahratta Railway, South Indian Railway and Mysore State Railway.

The students will apply classroom knowledge to real business issues
of SR and give suggestions on strategic issues. Their mandate is
market positioning, entry strategies, new product development,
growth strategies and talent management among others.

According to Nalin, one of the students involved with the project,
ISB is studying the traction, non-traction, green buildings and
renewable energy segments of the SR. On an average, each ELP project fetches ISB Rs 150,000 from Indian companies.

The report will also be submitted to the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change, an international environmental treaty aimed at stabilising greenhouse gas concentrations, that will enable the SR to trade carbon credits. “Some drivers are consistent with coasting (allowing the train to decelerate after reaching an optimum speed). This reduces the electricity usage by about 30 per cent,” he said.

According to another student Chetan, passenger movements in the SR
can be tapped for additional revenues. “Customised advertisements –
say students, women, officergoers, business community travelling in
trains can be tapped,” said the student pointing out that passenger
profiles change with the route and timing.

The ISB team is interacting with media buying houses for feedback on
their space buying patterns and will conduct trial marketing in
January.

The Southern Railway has already begun a biodiesel generation plant
at its workshop and is also implementing a water management
system. “A few processes just need some tweaking for enhancing their
efficiency,” said Anurag, another student.

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Published in: on December 31, 2008 at 6:48 am  Leave a Comment  

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