Climb Aboard for a Passage to India

Today’s Wall Street Journal has two stories about India, placed almost next to each other on the front page of the Marketplace section.

The one titled “India Could Provide Unique Opportunities for Expat Managers” discusses the tremendous opportunities that await managers relocating to India. Most of the article is about “Boomerang Professionals,” US Citizens of Indian origin who return to India after climbing the American corporate ladder. It also has some tips for “foreigners” trying to find positions in India.The second article “LVMH Books Passage to India for Vuitton, Dior, Fendi, and Celine” details how Louis Vuitton is snapping up all the good retail spaces in high-end shopping malls, thus leaving its competitors like Hermès behind. LVMH brands Fendi, Tag Heuer, and Dior are already in India. Kenzo and Sephora are lining up to be next. LVMH is also actively lobbying with the Indian government, mostly on reducing import tariffs and majority ownership in local retail operations. Thanks to their successful advocacy, Louis Vuitton and Fendi were allowed to own 51% stake in their local distributors. WSJ says they were one of the first foreign brands with majority ownership.

I do have an opinion on foreign entities and their ownership stakes. But that is not what this blog is about. It is about this “Passage to India” business. The first sentence in the first article starts off with “Ambitious global managers are looking for a passage to India – with good reason.” The second article has Passage to India right there in its title.

It is common knowledge now that India’s financial and economic stars are on the rise. Doesn’t that also mean that journalists and editors should increase their repertoire beyond this Passage to India bit? Otherwise, this is going to get pretty boring quite soon, making this a very long and tedious passage indeed (sorry, could not resist :)).

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