Cultural Briefing- India

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Cultural Briefing-India| October 20
Brief overview on India’s history, geography, size, population, languages, values and traditions to help business managers conduct new business venture in India| Prepared by: Sunita Goel, University of Maryland, University College |

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Starbucks has decided to launch its product in India. In order for the company to succeed in this new venture, I have prepared a cultural briefing for my colleagues, who will be leading this venture in India. I will conduct an informal cultural briefing session in order to provide cultural understanding, business etiquettes, and facts & figures about India. I will provide them with a quick overview about India, followed by a short power point presentation.

India is a large country with 3,287,240 Sq Km in area. It is basically a peninsula, with the Arabian Sea on the West, the Bay of Bengal on the east, and the Indian Ocean to the south. The Himalayas separate India from rest of Asia and China. Indian weather conditions vary from region to region due the vastness of the country (US Department of State, 2010). It varies from the snows of the Himalayas to the cultivated peninsula of far South, from the deserts of the West to the humid deltas of the East, from the dry heat and cold of the Central Plateau to the cool forest foothills. India is a country with 5000 year old civilization, values and traditions. Its history is divided into 7 periods, original Indians dating back to 1700BC to 3300 BC, Aryans from 2500 BC to 322 BC, the Mauryan Empire from 322BC to 188 BC, Gupta Period from 320 AD to 480 AD, Muslim period from 1175 AD to 1800AD, and Europeans Rule from 1800 AD to 1947. In 1947 India regained its independence from the British Empire (Cohen, 1998). India is one of the largest democratic nations in the world. It is the 2nd most populous country with population of 1,028,737,436. It has 28 states and 7 union territories. The majority of people, almost 70% of the total population, reside in rural areas. The national gender ratio is 944 females per 1000 males. India’s median age is 24.9 and annual growth rate is 1.38% per annum (US Department of State, 2010). India’s official language is Hindi, and its international commercial language is English. There are 22 other languages and many dialects. Hindi is most commonly spoken language in the country. English is a common language; however, there are local nuances of Indian English, such as, cousin-sister, cousin-brother, etc. Sanskrit is the classical language of India, and is older than Hebrew and Latin. India is a home to diverse languages, dialects, rituals, and ceremonies. India has been able to maintain it national identity even with it diversity, multi- languages, sub cultures, and languages (Pearson and Chatterjee, 1999). India is a secular state and there are people practicing many religions. 80% of the population is Hindu and 13.4 Muslim. The Indian religion consists of many Gods and Goddesses. India is the 5th largest economy in the world with a population of 300 million in middle class socioeconomic status (US Department of State, 2010. India is marked as one of the top destinations for retailers in A T Kearney’s Global Retail index. As per Kearney’s latest FDI Confidence Index, India has become the second most attractive destination for foreign direct investment. It is one of the ten largest retail markets in the world. Due to India’s expected growth rate of 8-9 %, the country is a now at a fulcrum of economic growth. It offers a wealth of opportunities in terms of consumer demand, market capitalization and continually improving infrastructure. For example, India has many different varieties of food. Each state has its own language, attire, and cuisine. Indian lifestyle varies from rural to urban areas. Indians place emphasis on family, and live in joint family systems, where a lot...
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