Power2SME has secured an additional $36 million in capital for its Series E financing round. Power2SME pioneered the category of the B2B Buying Club for SMEs and boasts of a strong digital ecosystem platform for SMEs, it said. Its increased portfolio offering addresses challenges in raw material procurement, finance and MRO needs. Power2SME operates out of seven offices and 14 states in India with a registered SME base of 50,000 SMEs. Power2SME will use the additional financing to continue geo expansion, accelerate product growth and innovation, invest in additional sales and marketing resources, and continue evaluating strategic acquisition opportunities. “Power2SME’s goal is to empower SMEs to reach efficiencies of scale, thus driving profitability for them. Our work has been driven by our vision to make SMEs bankable. Our deep networks and relationships with the banking sector and financial institutions helps us to make our SMEs succeed like never before,” founder and CEO R. Narayan said. “This capital gives us additional resources to expand quickly and strategically into new markets, innovate rapidly, and deliver on our vision.”

F-Prime Leads Threat Stack Series C Round

F-Prime Capital Partners served as the lead investor into the Series C funding round of Threat Stack, provider of the industry’s most comprehensive intrusion detection platform for cloud, hybrid-cloud and on-premise environments, which netted $45 million. F-Prime is the venture capital group associated with the parent company of Fidelity Investments. Additionally, Indian American Gaurav Tuli of F-Prime will join Threat Stack’s board of directors. “The migration of computing workloads to public cloud environments represents the most significant shift in enterprise technology of the last 15 years. Cybersecurity continues to be the most acute challenge in the move to cloud, as cloud infrastructure is elastic and complex and attackers are operating at unprecedented speed and sophistication,” said Tuli. “Cloud security requires new approaches and new solutions, and Threat Stack is a rare security company that is purpose-built to address these unique challenges. Our investment will help drive continued innovation to meet the rapidly expanding market demand.”

CrowdStrike Expands Operations in India

CrowdStrike Inc. announced the further expansion of its operations in India. CrowdStrike is setting up its development center in Pune and appointing senior local leadership to drive growth and talent acquisition. CrowdStrike has appointed Ramanand Kambli as regional sales director of India and SAARC and Jhilmil Kochar as managing director of the CrowdStrike India Development Center. Additionally, CrowdStrike is making multiple strategic hires within India and plans to rapidly recruit for more than 20 new positions by the end of 2017. On the heels of explosive global growth, CrowdStrike’s operations in APAC now span India and SAARC, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and parts of Northern Asia. CrowdStrike is leveraging its India operations as a significant technical hub for future growth and development. The organization is building a 10,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art engineering and operations center to acquire the most skilled, technical talent within the region. CrowdStrike is also investing in building a regional salesforce with supporting functions such as sales engineers, field sales managers and channel sales representatives. “The opening of CrowdStrike’s engineering and operations center in Pune will allow us to attract the region’s smartest and brightest technical talent and expand our innovative next-generation technology at an even faster pace,” said Kochar.

American Eagle Outfitters Expands to India

American Eagle Outfitters Inc. announced plans to enter India through licensed stores. The company has signed a multi-year license agreement with the Aditya Birla Group, a leading Indian conglomerate with an extensive retail portfolio, as well as strong digital and omni-channel capabilities. The first stores are expected to open in Mumbai and Delhi in Spring 2018. “India’s rapidly developing and vibrant economy, anchored by the world’s largest youth population, provides an exciting growth opportunity for our brands, expanding our global reach,” commented Andrew McLean, EVP of global commercial operations. “Aditya Birla brings deep market experience and extensive retail capabilities, giving us a strong platform to deliver our leading AE jeans collections and casual American style to India’s growing market.”

Avjinder Kaler Appointed as Alternate Liaison

Avjinder Singh Kaler was appointed as alternate liaison and liaison for the National Soybean Variety Review Board by the president of the Crop Science Society of America based on his commitment to the society. It is a three-year term running through 2020, to be followed by two years as liaison. Kaler is currently working as a professional research assistant with Larry Purcell, crop physiologist, in the Department of Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences. "I am very grateful for my major adviser, Dr. Larry Purcell, who gave me every opportunity to learn and guided me to become a good plant scientist," Kaler said.

Abha Thakkar Guides Wisconsin Council

Abha Thakkar has turned her focus toward the nonprofit field. The 42-year-old, who expected to be an elementary school teacher, now leads a Madison, Wis.-based Northside Planning Council as its executive director. The nonprofit runs the FEED Kitchens and a bakery training program, is administering the MarketReady program for the city’s Public Market project, and is helping plan a path for how to use federal grants to reduce youth violence on Madison’s North Side, among other initiatives, according to a Wisconsin State Journal report.

ISAS, BPI Launch Dissertation Prize Contest

The Institute for South Asia Studies and the Berkeley Pakistan Initiative announced the inaugural S.S. Pirzada Dissertation Prize for 2017-18. Submissions, accepted through Dec. 1, of the best doctorate dissertation on Pakistan (or the region that is now Pakistan) in the humanities, social sciences, visual and fine arts, law and public health are welcomed. Comparative dissertations will be accepted as long as Pakistan forms at least 50 percent of the content and the dissertee can make a specific case for the research on Pakistan. Only dissertations submitted at an accredited North American or European Union-based University will be accepted. The prize comes with a $2,500 book subvention. Results will be announced Feb. 9, 2018.

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