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The Ford Foundation announced the election of N.R. Narayana Murthy to its board of trustees. Mr. Murthy is chairman of the board and chief mentor of Infosys Technologies Limited, an international software services firm based in Bangalore, India. He will join the board at its May meeting, which begins today. Ford Foundation trustees are elected by the full board and serve six-year terms.

N.R. Narayana Murthy

“N.R. Narayana Murthy is respected around the world as a pivotal leader in international business, key innovator in information technology and champion of strong corporate governance,” said Kathryn Fuller, chair of the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees. “He is deeply committed to the mission and values of the Ford Foundation and will play a critical role in advancing our efforts to improve lives and create opportunity for people throughout the world.”

Along with six other software engineers, Mr. Murthy founded Infosys in 1981. He served as the company’s CEO until 2002 and as executive chairman of the board and chief mentor from 2002 to 2006.

Mr. Murthy serves as an independent director on the boards of several global companies including Unilever, HSBC and NDTV. He is also a member of the advisory boards and councils of several educational institutions including The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University, INSEAD, Stanford Graduate School of Business, University of Tokyo, Singapore Management University (SMU), Indian Institute of Information Technology-Bangalore (IIIT-B) and ESSEC Business School, Paris.
The recipient of numerous honors, Mr. Murthy was awarded the Padma Vibhushan, the second highest civilian award, by the Indian government in 2008. The Government of France conferred upon him the Officer of the Legion of Honor in 2008 and Britain conferred upon him the Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 2007. In 2005, he was ranked among The Economist magazine’s list of 15 most admired global leaders.

Mr. Murthy joins a group of senior business leaders who have served as trustees of the foundation, including Henry Schacht, former CEO of Lucent Technologies, and Ratan Tata, chairman of the Tata Group.

Ford Foundation trustees set policies relating to grant making, geographic focus, spending, investment, management, governance and professional standards, and they oversee internal and independent audits. Over the years, the foundation’s trustees have hailed from four continents and have extensive experience in the worlds of higher education, business, law, government and the nonprofit sector.

The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization. For more than half a century it has been a resource for innovative people and institutions worldwide, guided by its goals of strengthening democratic values, reducing poverty and injustice, promoting international cooperation and advancing human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, and Russia.

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Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), a leading IT services and business solutions firm, can confirm that it has renewed its managed services contract with one of the world’s leading long haul airlines Virgin Atlantic. By entrusting the management of its IT infrastructure and applications management to TCS, Virgin Atlantic is in a position to focus on core business activities and flex with the future challenges of the international airline industry.

Under the renewed agreement, TCS will continue to manage Virgin Atlantic’s global end-to-end IT systems including a 24×7 service desk, infrastructure and application support services. The company also manages Virgin Atlantic’s relationships with other third party IT vendors to ensure a cohesive approach to the airline’s IT ecosystem. TCS’ service delivery for Virgin Atlantic is designed around IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) best practices framework. TCS’ rigorous metrics-based management model and airline innovation expertise will ensure increased responsiveness for Virgin Atlantic customers.

“Today, airlines need to effectively exploit IT more than ever to be successful in a very competitive marketplace,” commented Mike Cope, IT Director, Virgin Atlantic. “Thanks to our ongoing partnership with TCS we have the right partner to enable this.”

Mr. A.S. Lakshminarayanan, VP and country manager, UK & Ireland, TCS, added, “Virgin Atlantic’s IT infrastructure and services are worldwide and therefore require a partner with a similarly global reach. TCS has established a strong reputation for providing our clients with certainty of outcome in alignment with their strategic objectives and the renewal of our agreement with Virgin Atlantic is testament to our performance over the past three years.”

The Travel and Transportation sector is emerging as a key vertical for TCS, generating 4.0% of the company’s total $5.7 billion revenues in FY08. TCS launched a dedicated Travel & Hospitality Innovation Lab in 2007 to help airlines enhance customer experience and differentiate themselves in an era of increasing competition and new distribution models.

About Virgin Atlantic Airways Limited

  • Virgin Atlantic is one of the world’s leading long-haul airlines.
  • It flies to 30 destinations worldwide from its main base at London Heathrow and London Gatwick.
  • There are 38 aircraft in its fleet, comprising 747-400s, A346 and A343.
  • Sir Richard Branson is the President of Virgin Atlantic; Steve Ridgway is the Chief Executive.
  • In 2007, Virgin Atlantic carried around 6 million passengers.

About Tata Consultancy Services

Tata Consultancy Services is an IT services, business solutions and outsourcing organization that delivers real results to global businesses, ensuring a level of certainty no other firm can match. TCS offers a consulting-led, integrated portfolio of IT and IT-enabled services delivered through its unique Global Network Delivery Model, recognized as the benchmark of excellence in software development. A part of the Tata Group, India’s largest industrial conglomerate, TCS has over 111,000 of the world’s best trained IT consultants in 50 countries. The company generated consolidated revenues of US $5.7 billion for fiscal year ended 31 March 2008 and is listed on the National Stock Exchange and Bombay Stock Exchange in India. For more information, visit us at http://www.tcs.com

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Yahoo! India, a leading global Internet company, today announced the launch of a new concept for Yahoo! India Search called Glue Pages Beta, available exclusively at www.yahoo.in. This new search experience collates and integrates the most relevant information from across the Web onto a single ‘visual’ search results page. Glue Pages Beta, which aggregates text, images, and video content, is available for select search terms across categories such as health, sports, entertainment, travel, technology, and finance.

Designed to save time by offering a new way to find answers quickly, Glue Pages Beta is ideal for topics with broad coverage across a variety of information sources. For example, a search for ‘diabetes’ combines results from HowStuffWorks, Yahoo! Groups, Yahoo! Health, Yahoo! Answers, and blogs. A search for ‘Aishwarya Rai’ would include biographical quick-facts, videos, music tracks, photos, and content from Yahoo! Answers.

Results will be displayed alongside classic Yahoo! India Search results. Consumers will also find links for other Glue Pages on topics related to their query.

Gopal Krishna, Head of Audience, Yahoo! India.

“Searching on Glue Pages Beta will result in an experience that promises more than just web links. Users will receive more relevant, visually appealing search results from across the Web in one topical page. The new Glue Pages Beta feature for Yahoo! India Search supports our strategy to make Yahoo! the leading starting point on the Internet and demonstrates our commitment to provide a compelling online search experience,” said Gopal Krishna, Head of Audience, Yahoo! India.

“Glue Pages Beta limits guesswork for the user by providing the best of web, all onto one ‘at-a-glance’ page. Over time, Glue Pages Beta will be made available to more categories that are relevant to users in India. We are excited to open this up further and work with a wider ecosystem of consumers, publishers, developers and advertisers in the future,” said Sandeep Shrivastava, Director Search, Yahoo! India.

Yahoo! Glue Pages Beta.

With a focus on providing a compelling and intuitive online search experience, the new Glue Pages Beta helps enable users in India to derive maximum value from their search efforts. As this beta evolves, Yahoo! India Search will explore various ways to supplement algorithmically generated Glue Pages with topical pages built and maintained by local subject-matter experts from the Internet community.

Key benefits of Glue Pages Beta

  • Collates and integrates the best information from across the Web onto a single topical page.
  • Uses intuitive search technology to identify the most relevant combination of text, images and video content for select popular search queries, alongside classic Yahoo! India Search results.
  • Saves time and helps eliminate guess work involved in clicking on multiple web links.
  • Initially available across categories like health, sports, entertainment, travel, technology and finance.

What are Glue Pages?
Glue Pages unite your Classic Search Results with visual information from the best sites anywhere on the Web.

Glue Pages unite your Classic Search Results with visual information from the best sites anywhere on the Web.

How are they different?
In one click, browse through images, videos, articles, and more all on one page! With Glue Pages, you spend more time learning and less time searching.

In one click, browse through images, videos, articles, and more all on one page! With Glue Pages, you spend more time learning and less time searching.

What are Related Pages?
These are Glue Pages that we think you might be interested in based on the topic of your search. Example:

These are Glue Pages that we think you might be interested in based on the topic of your search.

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Dr. Shan Nair was announced today as the recipient of the 2008 Outstanding 50 Asian Americans in Business Award, presented by the Asian American Business Development Center (AABDC).

Dr. Shan Nair 2008 Outstanding 50 Asian Americans in Business.The awards honor Asian American entrepreneurs and executives with great achievements in business nationwide. In honor of the recipients, an awards dinner will be held May 28 at The Waldof-Astoria in New York City. The 2008 awards recognize achievements from 2007 and is the first and largest business award program for the Asian American business community.

“All this year’s award recipients have faced the challenges of running a business head-on with outstanding success. Asian Americans are a successful group of individuals and this is why our organization wants to recognize the talent among the community,” says John Wang, president of AABDC.

Dr. Shan Nair, Co-Founder of Nair & Co is an Oxford University trained Ph.D. nuclear physicist and Charter Member of TiE-Boston and has a unique blended background in high technology, software and accounting. Dr. Nair has lived in 13 countries in South East Asia, Europe and the Middle East becoming multi-lingual in the process and placing him in an excellent position to understand international issues. When the Chernobyl accident occurred, he was one of the two UK technical experts assisting the European Commission on its post-accident risk assessment.

Once the UK power generation industry was privatized in the early 1990s, he retrained as an accountant within the industry and left to found Nair and Co. He introduced and trained UK legal practices in the Law Society’ Practice Management Standards and now uses his expertise to ensure Nair’s quality standards for clients continue to reflect the Sarbanes-Oxley (SAS-70) certification requirements. Dr. Nair is also responsible for the overall development of the group’s policies, strategies and goals. He has driven the company’s strong focus on using IT to leverage business advantage.

The award program also serves as an advocacy channel for many corporations to demonstrate their support for cultural diversity by nominating distinguished Asian American executives for the program. Previous award winners include Grace Wu Vice President of Merrill Lynch; Vivek Shah, President of Digital Publishing, Business & Finance Network at Time Inc.; Sandeep Gupta, Principal of Deloitte & Touche, LLP; Grace Hwang, Director of Reporting & Analysis at Verizon Wireless; Rachel Lam, Senior Vice President of Investments & Group Managing Director at Time Warner; Nawzer Parakh, Vice President for Operations & Global Business Manufacturing Director at The Dow Chemical Company; and Ansso Wang, Assistant Vice President of Corporate and International Affairs at American International Group (AIG).

For more information about the Outstanding 50 Asian Americans in Business Awards visit http://www.outstanding50.com/.

About Nair & Co

Nair & Co provides businesses an integrated solution geared to making your company’s thrust to expanding business overseas less risky, stress free and more strategic in the finance, tax, HR, compliance and legal arenas. Specialized in working with the unique challenges of US-based technology companies, Nair & Co has headquarters in the UK and offices in USA, China, Japan and India and acts for nearly 700 foreign operations in over 40 countries. Nair & Co employs highly qualified international specialists as your one point of contact client service directors to support your international registration, tax, accounting, compliance, HR and payroll needs. Our unrivalled knowledge base, attention to detail and superior work ethics protect your company’s operations more effectively and save you time and money in the long run. For more information, visit http://www.nair-co.com.

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Bloggers and social media enthusiasts on the Internet have weighed in on the heated race for the democratic presidential nomination, and while the press and pundits are declaring Clinton’s victory in Pennsylvania a possible turning point in her road to the White House, Obama is still the big winner in the blogosphere.

According to RelevantNoise, Zeta Interactive’s technology that mines the Internet’s social media landscape – including blogs, as well as Consumer Generated Media (CGM) – the amount of buzz, or volume of posts, on the Internet regarding Barack Obama continues to be higher than Hillary Clinton. In fact, while both candidates received a substantial boost in buzz from the Pennsylvania primary, Obama’s spike far exceeded Clinton’s despite her win – with the volume of posts on Obama registering more than twice that of Clinton’s.

Volume of posts on Barack Obama versus Hillary Clinton from March (3/24/08) - April (4/24/08).

However, although Obama clearly wins in terms of buzz among the social media landscape, not all of the buzz is positive. While Obama registered a 70 percent share of voice among positive posts on the social internet, he also recorded nearly the same percentage of share within the negative posts. This means that of all the bloggers who posted negative opinions on one of the two candidates, Obama stole the vast majority of the share.

Tone comparison for Barack Obama versus Hillary Clinton from March (3/24/08) - April (4/24/08).

RelevantNoise is a Web-based, user-driven social media mining tool that instantly taps into the over 75 million blogs, as well as message boards and online communities within the Internet’s social media landscape, providing real-time feedback and insight on the consumer trends and opinions that help drive their behaviors. A growing number of organizations rely on the technology to collect vital business and competitive intelligence to help drive decisions regarding their brands and products.

In addition to measuring the volume and tone of conversations across the blogosphere, RelevantNoise also measures the influence level of bloggers, and provides links to all related posts. In the case of Barack Obama, RelevantNoise detected a significant increase in both positive and negative posts from a mixture of thousands of online authors, ranging from very influential bloggers to lesser-known authors. The technology is also able to measure competitors’ Internet buzz as well, including share-of-voice. So that a company or political campaign can compare the volume and tone of buzz surrounding its organization vs. the competition to help gauge the effectiveness of messaging and/or quickly change strategy when necessary.

“We used our RelevantNoise technology to gain insight on the democratic presidential race, and determine what was being said about each candidate heading into the critical upcoming primaries,” said Al DiGuido, CEO of Zeta Interactive. “Searching on public reaction to important news topics such as the Obama/Clinton race continues to illustrate the immediate value of blog mining intelligence and analysis to businesses throughout the world.”

Zeta Interactive continues to innovate the next generation of digital marketing for Fortune 1000 customers, and its clients with full-service digital marketing offerings, including its award-winning RelevantNoise technology.

About Zeta Interactive

Zeta Interactive is a full-service digital marketing agency offering a wide range of services – from email and search marketing, to web site development, creative, business intelligence services and more. The company aims to be the leading provider of integrated, interactive services that help marketers realize the full potential of the Internet to build brands, increase sales, improve processes, and reduce costs. Zeta Interactive’s specialty is in crafting strategies and programs for customers that help them acquire, retain, up-sell, cross-sell and win back their customers-cost effectively and efficiently. The company does so by providing superior proprietary technology and a marketing approach that is focused on accountability, measurability and ROI metrics.

Headquartered in New York City, Zeta Interactive has more than 300 employees worldwide located in California, Florida, Idaho, Nevada, New Jersey, Texas, Rhode Island and India. The company serves more than 200 clients currently, including such world-class companies as Time Inc., Sony Electronics Inc., and LiveNation. For more information please visit: http://www.zetainteractive.com. For more information on Zeta Interactive’s RelevantNoise go to http://www.relevantnoise.com.

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The United States’ infrastructure problems could reach crisis proportions in the next 10 years if steps are not taken to attract more private capital to the sector or overhaul the nation’s antiquated regional infrastructure planning process. This is one of the key findings in Infrastructure 2008: A Global Perspective, a report published jointly today by Ernst & Young LLP and the Urban Land Institute (ULI).

The report estimates that the US currently has a US$170 billion annual funding gap for infrastructure projects. However, the gap is widening every year and there are fears that the gap could balloon over the next few years as local and state governments experience “revenue shrink,” particularly from lower property tax collections.

“Frankly, the US has been coasting when it comes to infrastructure spending, especially when compared to growing economies such as China which spends about nine percent of GDP on vital infrastructure,” said Dale Anne Reiss, global leader of real estate, Ernst & Young, LLP. “The economic uncertainty facing us means that public infrastructure is in even greater jeopardy,” said Ms. Reiss.

“It is clear from the experience of other countries that public private partnerships (PPPs) are an essential tool in planning, building and maintaining vital infrastructure,” said Mike Lucki, head of Ernst & Young’s global infrastructure services group. “Failure to fully embrace this model in the US could lead to our economy falling behind more of our global competitors,” Mr. Lucki added.

The report concludes that infrastructure funds – private vehicles set up to invest in infrastructure assets – currently hold an estimated US$400 billion in capital for investment. This, combined with broader adoption of the PPP model, could alleviate much of the current strain on public coffers caused by the need for radical improvement in local, state and regional infrastructure, says the report. However, the report also questions whether the US has the political will and determination to take a long term approach to the infrastructure issue.

“Unfortunately, the infrastructure debate in this country only moves forward when catastrophic examples occur of the state of our bridges, roads, airports and water systems,” said Mr. Lucki. “If we are going to address this issue and be in a position to challenge rampant economies such as China over the next few decades, we have to take a much more considered and holistic approach and not wait for another structure to collapse. We need to create a mindset to have the will to build,” he added.

The EY/ULI report provides a snapshot of current and planned infrastructure investment in a variety of categories across the globe, with an in-depth look at the United States, China, Japan, India and Europe.

About Ernst & Young’s Global Real Estate Center

Today’s real estate industry must adopt new approaches to address regulatory requirements and financial risks, whilst meeting the challenges of expanding globally and achieving sustainable growth. Ernst & Young’s Global Real Estate Center brings together a worldwide team of professionals to help you achieve your potential – a team with deep technical experience in providing assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The Center works to anticipate market trends, identify the implications and develop points of view on relevant industry issues. Ultimately it enables us to help you meet your goals and compete more effectively. It’s how Ernst & Young makes a difference.

About Ernst & Young

Ernst & Young is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. Worldwide, our 130,000 people are united by our shared values and an unwavering commitment to quality. We make a difference by helping our people, our clients and our wider communities achieve potential. For more information, please visit http://www.ey.com.

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The world’s populous nations are also among the fastest growing mobile markets, producing some 320 million new mobile phone subscribers in 2007 alone, an increase of more than 25 percent, according to a new report from TechWeb’s Light Reading called “Top 10 Emerging Mobile Markets 2007.”

China’s mobile operators added about 2 million more new subscribers than India’s wireless carriers, making China the fastest growing mobile market in 2007 by subscriber volume, and helping the country maintain its position as the world’s largest mobile market.

This new report, available free of charge, can be viewed by visiting: http://www.lightreading.com/document.asp?doc_id=151913

“So-called emerging markets have become the drivers of mobile growth, and the top 10 countries in our list alone account for about a third of the 3 billion subscribers worldwide,” says Light Reading reporter Nicole Willing, who compiled the report. “These are the hottest markets to watch in the mobile world, and they have plenty more room to grow.”

The major service providers mentioned in this report include: Etisalat, MTN Irancell, HT Mobile, Vimpel-Communications, China Mobile, and China Unicom.

About Light Reading

Founded in 2000, Light Reading is the ultimate source for technology and financial analysis of the communications industry, leading the media sector in terms of traffic, content, and reputation. It reaches an extensive audience of executives and technologists within the telecom and enterprise networking communities, as well as the financial/industry analysts and investors who track these sectors. Light Reading was acquired by United Business Media in August 2005 and operates as a unit of TechWeb.

About TechWeb

TechWeb, the global leader in business technology media, is an innovative business focused on serving the needs of technology decision-makers and marketers worldwide. TechWeb produces the most respected and consumed media brands in the business technology market. Today, more than 13.3 million* business technology professionals actively engage in our communities created around our global face-to-face events Interop, Web 2.0, Black Hat and VoiceCon; online resources such as the TechWeb Network, Light Reading, Intelligent Enterprise, InformationWeek.com, bMighty.com, and The Financial Technology Network; and the market leading, award-winning InformationWeek, TechNet Magazine, MSDN Magazine, Wall Street & Technology magazines. TechWeb also provides end-to-end services ranging from next- generation performance marketing, integrated media, research, and analyst services. TechWeb is a division of United Business Media, a global provider of news distribution and specialist information services with a market capitalization of more than $2.5 billion.

*13.3 million business decision-makers: based on # of monthly connections.

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