Gujarat Government Signs MOU with Entigrity, Commits Up to 150 Crore Investment

 Ahmedabad-based outsourcing and fintech company, Entigrity Pvt. Ltd entered into a partnership with the Government of Gujarat. They aim to invest 150 crores and create 3000 jobs in the IT & Outsourcing Industry of the state.

Entigrity Pvt. Ltd. is a global leader in outsourcing for accounting firms across North America and the United Kingdom. On 20th June, 2022, the company signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Gujarat under its IT/ITES policy 2022-27.

A part of the Government’s IT/ITeS policy 2022-27, under this MOU, the company intends to generate an upwards of 3000 employment opportunities across Gujarat and invest upto 150 crores in the coming 3 to 5 years. The MoU was signed in the presence of the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Gujarat, Shri. Bhupendrabhai Patel. Shri. Vijay Nehra, Secretary of the State Department of Science and Technology along with Entigrity CEO, Mr. Shalin Parikh and COO, Mr. Valay Parikh attended the signing ceremony.

Through this MoU, Entigrity joins the State Government in bolstering its efforts to assist the Information Technology sector, empower youth through ICT skills, and position Gujarat as a preferred location for global knowledge workforce and industry.

Mr. Shalin Parikh, Founder and CEO of Entigrity said, “Government of Gujarat’s IT and ITES policy initiative, under the leadership of Shri Bhupendrabhai Patel, will really boost investment & enable the whole ecosystem to grow. Gujarat will immensely benefit from these policies and we are happy that we have been selected among the Top 3 companies to sign an MOU to strengthen the government’s efforts. These policies will really help companies like ours in building infrastructure, hiring right talent and being more globally competitive. Our aim is to go to tier 2 cities of Gujarat and set up our offices there and generate progressive employment opportunities for the youth of these cities.”

Started in December 2015 with 4 team members in a short span of 6 years Entigrity has grown to more than 1250 employees, with offices in 6 different cities of India. Entigrity also has offices in Houston, TX and Toronto, ON. With its main office in Ahmedabad, in the coming years, the company plans to expand its presence to cities such as Rajkot, Baroda and Surat. Entigrity hired almost 700 people during the pandemic in 2020 and 2021, and grew by more than 100% in the last two years.

Shalin further says, “We have completely bootstrapped our business from scratch to scale and have never raised any funding from Investors or VC’s, and we would love to remain that way. We have had several investment offers over the years, however, our focus has been to grow profitably while prioritizing employee welfare and client satisfaction. Our core strength is our team.”

Entigrity focuses on 3Es for every Entigritian i.e. Enhance, Empower and Elevate.

#enhance – continuous upskilling amongst its employees by providing quality training and development all the while upholding its core values

#empower – providing the right platform and environment for growth and development of each team member.

#elevate – all the Sr. Management positions at Entigrity are being held by employees who have grown and elevated in their career at Entigrity. Entigrity believe in elevating their homegrown talent to all senior and leadership position as they have given the sweat and blood in building the foundation.

In their short journey of less than 75 months, they have hired 800+ CA dropouts and have thereby provided them with progressive career opportunities. They intend to continue our endeavor and provide opportunities to those dropouts and individuals who have unfortunately failed in their CA exams. Providing such opportunities would result in gainful employment creation, because these candidates, who failed in their CA careers often don’t get the kind of opportunity that they truly deserve. In most cases, if you are not able to clear the CA exams, the opportunities and growth in the job market for such a student would be significantly lower compared to one who has become a chartered accountant. The knowledge and skills gained by them during their articleship and while preparing for their exams is what is far more valuable in the eyes of the company rather than just a title or degree. As far as statistics are concerned, there are more than 5 Lakh semi- qualified/dropped out CA aspirants in the market struggling for a gainful opportunity.

Not only that, but Entigrity also provides sponsorship to all its staff members if they wish to pursue CPA (Certified Public Accounting) or EA (Enrolled Agent) program while working with the company.

Elaborating on the same, Shalin says, “We want to reach out to this pool of talent who have dropped out of CA exams because of various reasons, financial, social or otherwise, so that we can break the stigma around these dropped out CA aspirants and provide more advantageous and progressive working opportunities. I believe they deserve better job opportunities and financial growth considering the amount of hard work they have done in preparing for their CA exams and the knowledge they have gained by working in a CA firm for 2 to 3 years. We at Entigrity, respect hardwork and knowledge over any title or degree.”

Speaking about their plans to scale the business, Mr. Valay Parikh, COO and Co-founder said, “We plan to hire more than 3000 professionals in the state of Gujarat in the next 3 to 5 years across multiple cities. Apart from expanding our operation in Ahmedabad, we will be opening up our offices in Gandhinagar, Rajkot, Surat, Vadodara, thereby generating direct employment of 3000+ professionals in the state of Gujarat. With this increased hiring, we would continuously increase our investment in expanding our Infrastructure, building state of the art research and development centers, continuously upgrade our learning and development infrastructure, expand our investment in technology and cybersecurity capacities, especially in the area of Automation, Robotics and Edtech, to cater our clients. We plan to invest between 100 to 150 crores in the state of Gujarat in the next 3 to 5 years. Our focus would be to provide economic and job opportunities to the youth of Tier 2 cities of gujarat so they don’t have to migrate to pune, bangalore or hyderabad and they get the same opportunities in their hometown.”

The company has also taken great efforts to give back to the community and support the less fortunate. They started with an Initiative in March 2022 called the “1 Child Education Support for 1 Employee” wherein they support the complete education of 1 underprivileged child for every employee they recruit. With a target to support more than a thousand children before the end of 2022 and a double of that by the end of 2023, this MoU will go a long way in aiding Entigrity’s goal.

Entigrity Private Limited

Patrick Ross

646-827-4348

www.entigrity.com

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Hong Kong – Government implements measures with immediate effect to curb scalping of designated quarantine hotels guest rooms

Government implements measures with immediate effect to curb scalping of designated quarantine hotels guest rooms

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     The Government announced today (June 24) the immediate implementation of measures to curb scalping of guest rooms of designated quarantine hotels (DQHs) and the inclusion of three more DQH hotels under the eighth cycle of the DQH Scheme to increase the room supply.

 

     The Government has all along been monitoring closely the operation of the DQH Scheme and noticed the scalping of guest rooms in DQHs in recent days. Having discussed with the hotel industry, the following measures are implemented with immediate effect to prevent the scalping of hotel rooms-

 

  1. DQHs should require their partner travel agents not to block book the guest rooms without booking details of guests. Travel agents must provide relevant information of the guests to the hotels with full payment settled at the time they reserve the rooms;
  2. Hotels should ensure that all room bookings must be made under a real name and full payment must be settled in advance. At the same time, DQHs should develop a set of fair and transparent refund policy; and
  3. Hotels should ask the travel agents to itemise the fees charged on the receipt, and ensure that the hotel room rate is the same as the published rate listed on the Government website.


 

     A Government spokesman said, “The Government implements the DQH Scheme with a view to preventing the importation of COVID-19 cases. The Scheme is an effective measure in Hong Kong’s anti-epidemic strategies to contain virus spread. We have reiterated to all DQHs that the Government will not tolerate any kind of scalping activities.

 

     “We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will take appropriate follow-up action if non-compliance cases are found.”

 

     Following the announcement of the list of the first batch of DQHs for the eighth cycle of the DQH Scheme on June 16, the Government announced today a list of three more hotels, including Bay Bridge Lifestyle Retreat in Tsuen Wan, Mira Moon Hotel in Wan Chai and Prince Hotel, Hong Kong in Yau Tsim Mong District. These three hotels join upon assessment as DQHs under the Scheme and will start accepting room bookings from tomorrow (June 25) onwards. A total of some 900 additional rooms will be provided.

 

     The eighth cycle of DQH Scheme will run from August 1 to October 31. The Government is conducting assessments on other hotels’ applications. Further announcements will be made when relevant work is completed.

 

     Coupling with the hotels announced today, there are altogether 65 DQHs under the eighth cycle of DQH Scheme, providing around 24 000 rooms.

Hong Kong – Government announces list of eighth-cycle designated quarantine hotels

Government announces list of eighth-cycle designated quarantine hotels

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     The Government announced today (June 16) the list of the first batch of designated quarantine hotels (DQHs) for the eighth cycle of the Designated Quarantine Hotel Scheme (see Annex). The new cycle of the Scheme will run from August 1 to October 31, 2022.  The first batch of 62 hotels will provide about 23 000 rooms.



     A Government spokesman said, “The Government issued letters to some 2 000 hotels and guesthouses with valid licences on May 27 to invite applications for enlisting as DQHs in the eighth cycle.  Interested hotels must pass the inspection conducted by the Food and Health Bureau and relevant departments (including the Buildings Department, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department and the Department of Health) to ensure that the design, facilities and workflow of the hotels fulfil the infection control requirements.



     “A total of 62 currently serving DQHs (see Annex) are confirmed suitable to be DQHs under the eighth cycle of the Scheme after assessment, providing about 23 000 rooms of various types and rates for selection by arrivals in Hong Kong from places other than the Mainland and Macao.”



     The spokesman added, “The Government is still conducting assessments on other hotels applying for joining this cycle of the Scheme. Further announcements will be made when relevant work is completed.”



     The Government will update regularly the list of DQHs and their booking status on the thematic website www.designatedhotel.gov.hk;



     The Government fully implemented the DQH Scheme on December 22, 2020, requiring all arrivals from specified places to undergo compulsory quarantine at DQHs as a measure to further prevent the importation of COVID-19 cases and reduce contact between arrivals and the local community. The first to sixth cycles of the DQH Scheme have ended while the seventh cycle will end on July 31, 2022.

Hong Kong – Government releases consultancy study report on support to carers

Government releases consultancy study report on support to carers

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     The Labour and Welfare Bureau (LWB) today (June 9) released the report of the Consultancy Study on Needs and Support Required of Carers of Elderly Persons and of Persons with Disabilities in Hong Kong, submitted by the Consulting Team commissioned. The Government accepted in principle the directions and recommendations put forward in the study report and will follow up on them.



     A spokesman for the LWB said, “The Government encourages ageing in place and assists persons with disabilities to live in the community. Carers play an indispensable and important role in helping elderly persons and persons with disabilities live at home. The Government provides various support services to enhance the capabilities of carers and relieve their stress. The consultancy study recognised the Government’s efforts in supporting carers and suggested integrating and enhancing relevant services.” At present, support services include care skills training, emotional support, respite care, lending of rehabilitation aids, assisting carers to set up mutual support groups, and various pilot schemes of financial assistance and support required (details in Annex).



     The consultancy report proposed supporting carers along four directions, i.e. supporting carers in the community, capacity building of carers, multi-partite collaboration and ensuring the sustainability of carer support measures, and a Collaborative Model, which is divided into three tiers, namely carer strength building, encouraging family and informal support, and service integration. A total of 11 specific recommendations are proposed as follows:

 

  1. Raise awareness of carers about the importance, availability, and access of information, and increase the readiness of carers and intermediate parties to seek help from available services;
  2. Examine existing websites and encourage non-governmental organisations/social enterprises/corporates to develop a carer-centric and sustainable information gateway to address carers’ needs;
  3. Provide carer-centric training and intervention to promote carers’ well-being, self-management, ability to cope with stress, as well as to strengthen their caregiving capacity;
  4. Promote family-based support and mutual assistance among peer carers across their lifespan and at different stages of their caregiving journey;
  5. Cultivate a carer-friendly neighbourhood;
  6. Devise and promote a carer-friendly support environment in the workplace so as to help carers strike a balance between their work and their caregiving role;
  7. Develop a local self-administered assessment tool with the aim of increasing the knowledge of carers in terms of needs, risks identification and management, and potential support available;
  8. Identify high-risk carers and provide timely support;
  9. Better introduce, access and utilise assistive technologies to relieve the care burden, enhance caring capability and improve carers’ quality of life;
  10. Increase accessibility and diversity of respite service to provide relief to carers with ad-hoc needs; and
  11. Provide a good mix of services, voucher and cash to support carers.




     The consultancy study emphasised that carer support is a shared responsibility of family, community, business and the Government. Multi-partite collaboration among different sectors, professions, organisations and the Government should be established to implement various service proposals, such as adopting flexible and innovative operation models and promoting the use of technology, and providing sustainable support through optimising government and non-government funding. The resources injected by the Government should be integrated, so as to enhance the effectiveness of services.



     The spokesman said, “We will report the study report to the Legislative Council Panel on Welfare Services in due course. The Government will follow up on the directions and recommendations put forward by the consultancy report, consult stakeholders in a timely manner and consider practicable measures to support carers continuously.”



     The Government commissioned the Consulting Team from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in July 2020 to conduct a consultancy study on the service needs of carers of elderly persons and of persons with disabilities. Through individual interviews, focus group discussions and surveys, the Consulting Team interviewed nearly 5 000 participants, including elderly persons/persons with disabilities and their carers, and stakeholders such as professional staff of elderly and rehabilitation services in public and private sectors, and consulted the relevant committees. The study report has been uploaded to the LWB’s website (www.lwb.gov.hk).

Hong Kong – HKSAR Government strongly opposes criticism on Hong Kong’s situation by US’ 2021 Report on International Religious Freedom

HKSAR Government strongly opposes criticism on Hong Kong’s situation by US’ 2021 Report on International Religious Freedom

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     The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) today (June 3) strongly opposed the unfounded remarks on Hong Kong in the United States’ 2021 Report on International Religious Freedom.



     “Following the implementation of the Hong Kong National Security Law, chaos has stopped and order has been restored in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong National Security Law ensures the resolute, full and faithful implementation of the ‘one country, two systems’ principle under which the people of Hong Kong administer Hong Kong with a high degree of autonomy, and also clearly stipulates that human rights shall be respected and protected in safeguarding national security in the HKSAR,” said the HKSAR Government spokesperson. “The rights and freedoms, including the freedoms of speech, of the press, of publication, of association, of assembly, of procession and of demonstration, enjoyed by residents of the HKSAR under the Basic Law and the provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights as applicable to Hong Kong shall be protected in accordance with the law. The four categories of offences endangering national security stipulated under the Hong Kong National Security Law are clearly defined. Law-abiding people will not unwittingly violate the law.”



     The HKSAR Government spokesperson stressed, “All law enforcement actions taken by the law enforcement agencies under the Hong Kong National Security Law, or indeed any local legislation, are based on evidence, strictly according to the law and for the acts of the persons or entities concerned, and have nothing to do with their political stance, background or occupation.”