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1 HCL Infosystems concludes sale of entire stake in HCL Services HCL-INSYS 18 Jun, 2018 HCL Infosystems has concluded the sale of entire shareholding of HCL Services (consisting of Domestic Enterprise Service Business), a wholly owned subsidiary of the company on June 15, 2018 to Karvy Data Management Services. HCL Infosystems is one of India’s premier IT Services, Distribution and Digital Solutions Company, enabling organizations to attain and sustain competitive advantage by leveraging Information and Communication Technologies. ...
2 Fortis Healthcare scraps SRL, Fortis Malar merger scheme FORTIS 15 Jun, 2018 Fortis Healthcare has said it is withdrawing the scheme of amalgamation between Fortis Malar Hospitals and SRL due to delay in completion of the process and strong headwinds in the sector. “The entire process was expected to take 6-8 months, however, due to reasons beyond the company’s control, the process has taken over 19 months and is still not complete,” Fortis Healthcare said in a late night filing on Wednesday. The scheme is currently pending for approval with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), Chandigarh bench, it added. During this period of 19 months, the healthcare sector has witnessed strong headwinds and performance of diagnostics business has not been optimum, Fortis Healthcare said. “Given the challenges/headwinds in the sector and less than optimum performance of the diagnostics business during the period of delay, the demerger and a subsequent listing may result in value unlocking that may not be optimum for Fortis shareholders at this point of time,” it added. The board has approved the withdrawal of the composite scheme of arrangement and amalgamation between the company, Fortis Malar Hospitals Ltd and SRL Ltd, subject to the approval of the NCLT, Fortis Healthcare said. On August 19, 2016, the board of Fortis had approved a proposal to demerge its diagnostics business, including that housed in its subsidiary SRL Ltd into another majority-owned subsidiary, Fortis Malar Hospitals pursuant to a composite scheme of arrangement and amalgamation. As part of the process, Fortis Malar was to sell its hospital business to Fortis Healthcare by way of a slump sale for a lump sum cash consideration of Rs 43 crore. The cash-strapped healthcare provider in May-end decided to initiate a fresh, time-bound bidding process for the company. Shares of Fortis Healthcare Ltd were today trading at Rs 136.95 per scrip on BSE, down 0.90 per cent from its previous close....
3 Tata Motors' arm expects Rs 1000 crore revenue from robotics business over next 5 years TATAMOTORS 15 Jun, 2018 Tata Motors’ heavy engineering and automation arm -- TAL -- is expecting Rs 1000 crore revenue from robotics business over next five years, with its entry into factory automation across various verticals and commercialisation of different product portfolio that are in pipeline. Besides, the company is planning to foray into high-end automation technology from June 2019 which includes surface mount technology (SMT) assembly machines. Tata Motors is India’s largest automobile company. Through subsidiaries and associate companies, Tata Motors has operations in the UK, South Korea, Thailand, South Africa and Indonesia. Among them is Jaguar Land Rover, the business comprising the two iconic British brands. ...
4 Karnataka steel companies want NMDC to slash iron ore prices NMDC 15 Jun, 2018 The Karnataka Iron and Steel Manufacturers Association has written a letter addressed to Piyush Goyal, Finance Minister, Narendra Singh Tomar, Minister for Mines, and Chaudhary Birender Singh, Minister for Steel, on the prevailing high iron ore prices in State which were pushing up the cost of steel production, particularly when the demand is reviving. Requesting the government not to allow NMDC, the largest miner in the State, fix the base price of iron ore artificially high in the e-auction, the association said steel companies are not able to pass on the incremental cost as other companies in neighbouring States are offering steel at a lower price due to cheap raw material availability. RK Goyal, Managing Director, Kalyani Steel and Vice-President of Karnataka Iron and Steel Manufacturers Association, told BusinessLine that the iron ore prices in Odisha should be the base price for e-auction in the State as it is a free market and there are no restrictions on output like in Karnataka. “While steel companies in the State are losing about ?1,200-1,500 a tonne depending on the iron ore grade they use, miners cannot be allowed to jack up prices with a profiteering motive,” he said. The Government should instruct the state-owned NMDC to reduce the prices rather than cutting down its production in the pretext that there is no demand for iron ore in the State, the association said in the letter. Seshagiri Rao, Joint Managing Director, JSW Steel, said of the overall iron production capacity of 30 million tonne per annum in Karnataka, NMDC alone produces about 12 mtpa while private miners have capacity of 17 mtpa and Mysore Minerals produces about 1 mtpa. NMDC had increased lump ore price by ?150 to ?3,050 a tonne and price of fines by ?100 to ?2,660 a tonne in May. “If NMDC and other miners are claiming that there is no demand for iron ore in the State then what is the reason for an increase in prices,” Rao asked....
5 Dr. Reddy’s Lab receives approval for Buprenorphine and Naloxone Sublingual Film DRREDDY 15 Jun, 2018 Dr. Reddy's Laboratories has received final approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) and is launching Buprenorphine and Naloxone Sublingual Film, 2 mg/0.5 mg, 4 mg/1 mg, 8 mg/2 mg, and 12 mg/3 mg, a therapeutic equivalent generic version of Suboxone (buprenorphine and naloxone) sublingual film, in the United States market. The product is being launched with an approved Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) Program. Buprenorphine and naloxone are used to treat adults with opioid dependence/addiction. Buprenorphine helps suppress withdrawal symptoms caused by discontinuation of opioid drugs, and naloxone reverses and blocks the effect of opioids. This combination of medications is used as part of a complete treatment program including prescription monitoring, counseling, and psychosocial support. Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories is a multinational pharmaceutical company based in Hyderabad, Telangana in India. It manufactures and markets a wide range of pharmaceuticals in India and overseas. ...
6 Tata Steel-Thyssenkrupp merger faces investor hurdle but is not a dealbreaker TATASTEEL 14 Jun, 2018 If Tata Steel Ltd’s shares are falling owing to fears its European joint venture has hit a roadblock, they may be overreacting. Both Tata Steel and Thyssenkrupp remain keen on the idea of moving the European steel businesses off their books. The opposition from some Thyssenkrupp investors is on the structure. Even opposition from workers could be a negotiation tactic to get better terms. Since the final contours of the transaction are being worked out, there is time to make changes to keep both investors and employees happy. The most recent cloud on the deal comes from an activist investor. Elliott Management Corp. has asked Thyssenkrupp to negotiate a better deal, saying that Tata Steel’s performance has deteriorated since the deal was first proposed, according to a Bloomberg report. When the memorandum of understanding was signed in September 2017, both companies’ European steel business had a near identical Ebitda margin, with Thyssenkrupp’s at 10.1% and Tata Steel Europe at 9.5%. While Thyssenkrupp has maintained around those levels, Tata Steel Europe has dropped to around 7%. The latest four quarters show Tata Steel Europe’s Ebitda on a declining trend. Tata Steel Europe started FY18 with the first quarter Ebitda declining sequentially, which it attributed chiefly to higher coking coal prices negating the effect of higher product prices. The second quarter saw selling prices decline sequentially, even as costs increased and volume declined. The third quarter was a seasonally weak one due to planned shutdowns, but Ebitda stabilised as costs were lower. In the last quarter production recovered, which along with higher selling prices offset higher costs and Ebitda gained. Thyssenkrupp has said that its Ebitda benefited from higher selling prices but also from cost efficiency. This divergence in performance is why a few investors believe there is a case for better terms for Thyssenkrupp. Eventually, that depends on whether the underlying reasons are permanent or temporary in nature. Even while keeping the equity stake at 50%, the two companies can negotiate other terms in a manner that allows concessions for such divergences. Fortunately, the companies don’t seem to be having second thoughts about the transaction. Certainly, tough opposition from institutional investors cannot be ruled out, but even if they force a recast that is still better for Tata Steel than the deal falling through. Its acquisition of Bhushan Steel Ltd and likely acquisition of other distressed steel assets will increase the strain on its balance sheet. Moving the Europe steel business off its books not only makes its balance sheet healthier but should also improve profitability. Tata Steel shares were down 0.30% at Rs578 in early trade on Wednesday....
7 Bharti Airtel plans Rs 24,000 crore capex for FY19 BHARTIARTL 14 Jun, 2018 Bharti Airtel is planning a capex of Rs 24,000 crore in FY19 to stay ahead in the 4G game and become the primary SIM for subscribers. The operator had a capex of Rs 23,968.2 crore in FY18. In a bid to achieve its target, the company has plans to entice customers to upgrade to 4G - with their device partnerships and special offers, retain them with postpaid offers, loyalty programs and use micro -marketing to cover all markets. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
8 Tata Power’s arm enters into PPA with GE to provide solar rooftop solutions TATAPOWER 14 Jun, 2018 Tata Power's wholly-owned subsidiary --Tata Power Renewable Energy (TPREL) has entered into a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with GE to provide solar rooftop solutions for six manufacturing and services sites in India. Tata Power will install solar rooftop projects at manufacturing sites located at Durgapur in West Bengal, Pallavaram and Hosur in Tamil Nadu, multi-modal manufacturing site at Pune and upcoming factory at Marhowra in Bihar and maintenance facility at Roza in Uttar Pradesh. The project would be executed on build-own-operate basis. The installation of the solar rooftop projects will help to generate over 1 million kWh of electricity per year and will lead to an average tariff reduction of around 30 percent. GE will also be able to curb the emission of over 13,000 kg of carbon dioxide per day. Tata Power is India’s largest integrated power company with a growing international presence. The company together with its subsidiaries and jointly controlled entities has presence in all the segments of the power sector viz. Fuel Security and Logistics, Generation (thermal, hydro, solar and wind), Transmission, Distribution and Trading. ...
9 HDFC Bank gets nod to raise up to Rs 15.5k cr via QIP HDFCBANK 14 Jun, 2018 HDFC Bank, India’s most valued lender, has received government approval to sell fresh shares in India and abroad in what could result in the country’s largest qualified institutional placement (QIP). The approval includes an Rs 8,500-crore infusion from parent Housing Development Finance Corp (HDFC), which will allow it to maintain its 25.6% current shareholding, potentially leaving about Rs 15,500 crore to be raised from the market. The QIP record is Rs 15,000 crore raised by State Bank of India (SBI) in June 2017. “This sale could happen as early as next week,” said a person involved in the issue. “The government approval was the most difficult to get and now that it is in hand the only thing that remains is a nod from the National Housing Bank (NHB), HDFC’s regulator, which can come in the next couple of days. Bankers will then waste no time in hitting the market.” Cabinet approved the proposal on Wednesday, subject to overseas ownership limits. This will allow “HDFC Bank to raise additional share capital of up to a maximum of Rs 24,000 crore, including premium, over and above the previous approved limit of Rs 10,000 crore, such that the composite foreign shareholding in the bank shall not exceed 74% of the enhanced paid-up equity share capital of the bank,” the government said. “The proposed investment is expected to strengthen the capital adequacy ratio of the bank.” Foreign banks including Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse, JPMorgan Chase, UBS Securities, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Nomura Holdings are vying for the issue. Bank’s First Share Sale in 3 Yrs Domestic investment banks such as JM Financial, Kotak Mahindra and Motilal Oswal could also be part of the issue. “It is expected that HDFC BankNSE 0.42 % will issue preferential shares to HDFC and simultaneously issue shares to institutional investors through a QIP,” said the person cited above. The capital raising will enhance the bank’s capital adequacy ratio from 14.8% in March 2018 and likely last the bank for the next three years. HDFC Bank ended at Rs 2,035, down 0.46%, on the BSE Wednesday. The Sensex ended 0.46% higher. This share sale will be the first since HDFC Bank raised Rs 10,000 crore through a combination of QIP and American Depository Receipts (ADRs) in February 2015. “Unlike last time, this time there is unlikely to be an ADR because regulations for ADRs are undergoing a change,” the person said. “HDFC Bank has to ensure that the sale of shares does not result in a breach of its 74% foreign investor limit. The QIP will also be closely watched after last week overseas investors surprised the market by keeping their purchase of shares in the bank to the minimum after a Rs 9,400 crore window opened up due to employee stock options vesting and diluting equity in the bank, giving foreign investors room to buy some more shares. ...
10 Ashok Leyland gets nod to merge light commercial vehicle arm ASHOKLEY 12 Jun, 2018 Ashok Leyland has received an approval from its board to merge its light commercial vehicle (LCV) Subsidiary, which were acquired from its erstwhile partner Nissan, with itself. The company has announced acquisition of the joint venture companies from Nissan on November 25, 2016. Both the companies went through a short period of dispute before entering into a settlement agreement. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
11 Crack in the welding: Tata Steel Europe, ThyssenKrupp JV hits speed bump TATASTEEL 12 Jun, 2018 A lifeline joint venture deal for Tata Steel Europe with German giant ThyssenKrupp is headed for trouble with key shareholders asking the ThyssenKrupp management to re-negotiate a better deal as profits of the German company have improved while those of Tata Steel Europe have slowed since last September, when both companies first proposed a merger of their European businesses. In a communication to Thyssenkrupp AG’s management, Elliott Capital Management, which owns a 3 per cent stake in the company, highlighted the divergence in performance of the steel businesses of Tata Steel Europe and Thyssenkrupp. The weakness in Tata’s slowing performance meant that a tie-up was now less favourable for Thyssenkrupp, it said. Earlier a similar appeal was made by Cevian Capital, which owns a 15 per cent stake in Thyssenkrupp, according to people familiar with the matter. Since Thyssenkrupp and the Tatas agreed to the preliminary terms of a merger of their European steel operations last September, Tata Steel Europe’s business has been under pressure. Earnings at Tata Steel Europe have dropped on rising raw material costs, while Thyssenkrupp’s profits have risen. There will also be 4,000 job losses, which the unions are opposing. If the initial deal terms of the 50:50 joint venture were to be maintained, it would represent about a $2.2-billion lower valuation for Thyssenkrupp, Elliott said. The equity structure would have to be 82 per cent in favour of Thyssenkrupp, the letter added. The investors’ views could make it more difficult for Thyssenkrupp CEO Heinrich Hiesinger, who has pledged his future on the deal with the Tatas, to proceed under the current terms. Hiesinger still needs to convince the company’s supervisory board to sign off on the joint venture. ALSO READ: Sale of steel business: Usha Martin board may discuss Tata, JSW offers As the board consists equally of shareholder and labour representatives, Hiesinger needs to convince both camps to agree to the deal. For Tata Steel Europe, which has been an albatross in Tata Steel’s growth story, this means the Tatas will have to either sweeten the deal or look for other options. “This significant divergence in relative valuation should be adequately reflected in the final terms of the steel JV,” Elliott wrote in the letter, which was first reported by German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. Earlier, Cevian Capital, Thyssenkrupp’s second-largest shareholder, had said Thyssenkrupp should be compensated with up to 2.5 billion euros if the joint venture came to fruition. Elliott and Cevian declined to comment when contacted by Bloomberg News. A formal agreement between ThyssenKrupp and Tata Steel is pending. Crack in the welding: Tata Steel, ThyssenKrupp JV hits speed bump In India, Tata Steel shares closed 2 per cent down on Monday at Rs 588 a share as investors were nervous over the future of Tata Steel Europe, which had affected the parent company negatively since Tata Steel’s acquisition in 2007 at $13 billion. When contacted, a Tata Steel spokesperson said: “As outlined in the MoU, both companies will bring different assets and obligations into the JV in order to set the valuation ratio at 50:50.” Thyssenkrupp reiterated that it planned to sign the agreement, declining to comment further. In a meeting with analysts on May 16, Tata Steel said its joint venture with Thyssenkrupp was on track. “We are progressing well to form the joint venture in Europe and we expect to sign the binding agreement very soon. Assuming six months for approval from the anti-trust authorities, we are looking to close the transaction by the end of the year,” T V Narendran, Tata Steel’s global CEO and MD, had said. The company is planning to de-consolidate Rs 200 billion of debt to the joint venture. Earlier, Thyssenkrupp’s labour representatives had also voiced their concern over the deal with Tata Steel Europe, highlighting the drop in profits at Tata’s European business and rising earnings at Thyssenkrupp’s business. “We are still concerned that the JV is a sensible solution, given the circumstances,” said Wilhelm Segerath, who is a senior official at labour union IG Metall and sits on Thyssenkrupp’s supervisory board. “The diverging development at both companies emphasises our concerns about the viability of Tata’s European operations, specifically the UK plant.” The diverging performance between the two businesses would affect the outcome of the joint venture. The 50-50 split between Tata and Thyssenkrupp is based on both companies’ earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of the 12 months prior to last June. Another sticky point of the deal is a plan to give Tata’s Dutch plant certain operational privileges after the merger, according to people familiar with the matter. The special rights would allow the management at Tata’s Ijmuiden plant in the Netherlands to retain cash flow and keep the current set-up of operations after the joint venture is completed, according to documents seen by Bloomberg. If Tata’s Dutch plant were to be protected, then Thyssenkrupp’s activities should get the same guarantees, Segerath had said. Europe workers question rationale Tata Steel’s European labour representatives remain unconvinced by a planned joint venture (JV) with Thyssenkrupp, adding there are numerous details that need to be hammered out before they can endorse a deal.The remarks on Monday by Tata Steel Europe’s European Works Council (EWC) threaten a further delay to a deal to combine Thyssenkrupp’s steel operations with Tata’s European steel business, a pact which has not been signed because of resistance from Dutch workers. Thyssenkrupp said in May it expected to be able to sign the deal with Tata Steel, agreed in principle last September, in the first half of 2018. Tata Steel confirmed that timeline at the time. The planned transaction would combine Thyssenkrupp’s and Tata Steel’s European steel operations to create the continent’s second-largest steelmaker after ArcelorMittal with sales of 15 billion euros ($17.7 billion). A Tata Steel spokesman told Reuters: “We will continue to engage in constructive dialogue with our employee representatives throughout the process of creating the proposed joint venture.”...
12 Fortis defers Q4 results by 2 weeks, says it needs time to consider internal investigation report FORTIS 12 Jun, 2018 Fortis Healthcare on Monday deferred the announcement of its results for the March quarter to June 25, citing a need for additional time to consider certain aspects of the internal investigation report comprehensively in its financial accounts. "The internal investigation conducted by Luthra & Luthra Law Offices, as initiated by the Audit and Risk Management Committee, has been completed and their report was made available on June 8, 2018. The same was duly placed before the Audit and Risk Management Committee and the Board at their meetings held today," the Fortis board said in a statement. "In light of the above, the completion of the audit and accounts will require additional time to consider the aspects of the report comprehensively in the financial accounts," the board said. Accordingly, the company's board, at its meeting held today, decided to defer the approval of its quarterly and annual financial results for the period ended March 31. Fortis' board did not disclose any details of the internal investigation report, but said it had shared the findings of Luthra & Luthra with the statutory auditors. It also said that the findings are being submitted to Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and Serious Fraud Investigation Officer (SFIO) as well. Both SEBI and SFIO are investigating Fortis after the company said that promoter directors Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh funneled Rs 473 crore out of the company through inter-corporate deposits. The Singh brothers resigned from the company's board in February. Fortis is now up for sale through a protracted bidding process. The company's board in March appointed external legal firm Luthra & Luthra to investigate whether there are any breaches in company's internal control procedures in light of the promoters taking out nearly Rs 500 crore. Deloitte, the statutory auditor of Fortis, had raised several red flags about ongoing investigations, inter-corporate loans and recoverability of certain vendor advances, in the auditor review report accompanying the company's earnings statements for the September and December quarters. The statutory auditor said it wasn't able to come to a conclusion on the financial statements as it "couldn't get sufficient appropriate evidence". Deloitte said it hasn't performed an audit, but has reviewed the accounts of the company. Deloitte earlier refused to sign the company's accounts for the September quarter, as it couldn't get sufficient, appropriate audit evidence from the company....
13 Sun Pharma’s Halol plant resolution could repair more than its financial health SUNPHARMA 11 Jun, 2018 Is this the beginning of something good for Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd? More importantly, will investors regain their long lost faith in the company, whose shares have halved from their high levels of April 2015? Consider the 8% jump in its share price on Friday. News reports said the US Food and Drug Administration had delivered a voluntary action indicated (VAI) verdict after an inspection of its Halol facility. This was apparently interpreted by investors as a sign that a re-inspection was not required. In turn, that implied a shorter resolution timeline after which pending generic drug approvals could get cleared. The significance of this resolution, if it does actually happen, is not in question. The plant’s non-compliance has held up approvals for nearly four years now and is partly responsible for Sun Pharma’s US business underperformance. But this development should not have been news to Sun Pharma’s shareholders. In a conference call on 25 May, after its March quarter results, Dilip Shanghvi, managing director’s responses to questions on Halol also indicated as much. He said that they did not expect a re-inspection and that the last date for a post-remediation response to FDA was in the second quarter of fiscal year 2019. The guidance for FY19 too included a quarter or two of revenues from launches from Halol, which assumed it would get a green light. Still, its shares went up 8% on news that merely confirms what the management said very recently. Does that reflect lack of confidence in the management’s assertion? That is possible. It’s been nearly four years since Halol came under the FDA scanner, in which it has tripped on multiple inspections and was also issued a warning letter. You can’t fault investors for wanting to see proof that this time could actually be different. The management’s response to the stock exchanges, after Friday’s news, says they will be able to provide an update after they get an establishment inspection report (EIR). The EIR is a closure report that will hopefully see Halol turn compliant, the warning letter will get lifted, and the cycle of approvals will resume. That is important as Halol’s resolution could add as much as $100 million in revenues annually, according to a Motilal Oswal Research note. While that can add to revenue and profit, the cash flows so generated will be useful for its research programmes. The problems in the external environment will remain, such as pricing pressure and competition in the US market or the threat of domestic policy proposals to control drug prices. But Halol was a problem of its own making. Getting rid of it will allow the management to focus on the market. Thankfully, there are no recent repeats of Halol in other locations. In the same conference call, Shanghvi had said the past year saw 18 site audits by the US FDA, which resulted in either zero or very limited observations. If they can maintain that record, say for the next five years, their credibility on this front should recover....
14 Arbitration award in Reliance-ONGC gas row next month RELIANCE 11 Jun, 2018 An international arbitration tribunal has concluded hearing in the USD 1.55 billion claims made against Reliance Industries and its partners for allegedly siphoning gas from deposits they had no right to exploit and is expected to pronounce a judgement next month. The panel headed by Singapore-based arbitrator Lawrence Boo has concluded hearings on the validity of the government's demand that Reliance and its partners BP plc of UK and Canada's Niko Resources pay for "unfairly" producing natural gas belonging to state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), sources privy to the development said. The three-member panel is likely to give its award in July, they said. Boo, a professor at universities in China, Australia and Singapore, and head of the Singapore-based Arbitration Chambers, was last year appointed as president of the tribunal by its two other members -- government's arbitrator and former Supreme Court Judge G S Singhvi and Reliance-appointed arbitrator, former English High Court Justice Bernard Eder. The oil ministry on November 4, 2016, slapped a demand of USD 1.47 billion on Reliance-BP-Niko combine for producing in seven years ending March 31, 2016 about 338.332 million British thermal units of gas that had seeped or migrated from ONGC's blocks into their adjoining KG-D6 in the Bay of Bengal. After deducting USD 71.71 million royalty paid on the gas produced and adding an interest at the rate of LIBOR plus 2 per cent, totalling USD 149.86 million, a total demand of USD 1.55 billion was made on Reliance, BP and Niko. At the time, Reliance disputed the government's demand as being based on a "misreading and misinterpretation of key elements of the PSC," and it said that such a demand was without precedent in the oil and gas industry. It on November 11, 2016, slapped an arbitration notice. Reliance is the operator of the KG-D6 block with 60 per cent interest while BP holds 30 per cent. The remaining 10 per cent is with Niko Resources. The government's compensation claim flowed from the report of the Justice (retd) A P Shah Committee. The Shah panel, in its August 28, 2016, report, concluded that there has been "unjust enrichment" to the contractor of the block KG-DWN-98/3 (KG-D6) due to the production of the migrated gas from ONGC's blocks KG-DWN-98/2 and Godavari PML. It relied on a report produced by petroleum industry consultant DeGolyer and MacNaughton which concluded that gas had migrated from ONGC-controlled parts of the sea floor and the geological formations beneath it into areas controlled by the private companies. But Reliance had at that time stated that the methods were flawed. The government, sources said, accepted the recommendations of the committee and consequently, decided to claim restitution from Reliance-BP-Niko for "the unjust benefit received and unfairly retained". So, a notice was sent, they said, adding that the government is also pressing Reliance to pay USD 174.9 million of additional profit petroleum after certain costs were disallowed because of KG-D6 output being lower than the target. The cost recovery issue is being arbitrated separately. Originally, ONGC had sued Reliance for producing gas that had migrated from its blocks KG-DWN-98/2 (KG-D5) and Godavari PML in the KG basin to adjoining KG-D6 block of Reliance. Under the direction of the Delhi High Court, the government had appointed a one-man committee under retired Justice A P Shah to go into the issue. Shah, however, said the compensation should go to the government as it is the owner of all unproduced natural resources. ...
15 D-Mart parent joins Rs1 trillion crore market cap club D-MART 11 Jun, 2018 D-Mart parent Avenue Supermarts Ltd on Monday joined the elite club of companies with Rs1 trillion market capitalisation after its share price surged to a record-high of Rs1,608.50, up 1% from previous close, BSE data showed. At 9.50am, D-Mart saw its market capitalisation touch Rs100,171.80 crore. The stock has gained 20% in last three weeks. So far this year it has gained 35%. The scrip has jumped 373.86% from its offer price of Rs299 since its debut in March 2017. This after D-Mart promoter Radhakishan Damani sold nearly 6.2 million shares, or 1% stake, in Avenue Supermarts last week to ensure that the firm meets the minimum public shareholding norms. The company was recently included in the MSCI India Domestic and MSCI India Domestic Small Cap Index, with effect from 1 June. “D-Mart has a strong track record of high growth and profitability in all of its performance matrices. We expect high growth to continue aided by store additions, change in strategy, e-com, debt reduction and tailwinds from GST. As a result we expect high premium to be maintain in the medium-term” said investment services firm Geojit Financial Services. In the March quarter, D-Mart posted a net profit of Rs 167 crore, up 73% from a year ago. Total revenue rose 22.5% from a year ago to Rs3,810 crore. D-mart added 24 stores during 2017-18—the highest number of stores additions in a year since 2012 but lower than management’s internal expectations of 30. The D-Mart management has cited store addition as one of the key challenges and focus areas for the company. “We now factor in 25 store openings/year (20 earlier) and increase our EPS estimates by 1% for FY19 and 4% for FY20. We estimate 32% EBIDTA and 33% PAT CAGR over FY18?20. We believe that valuations at 66.8xFY20 EPS factor in the positives,” said Prabhudas Lilladher in a report to its investors. The brokerage firm has retained its reduce ratings with a target price of Rs1,003 a share. Of the 15 brokers tracking the D-Mart stock on Bloomberg, five recommended a ‘buy’ rating, eight asked its investors to ‘sell’ the stock and two have a ‘hold’ rating....
16 Tata Motors open to stake sale in finance arm, expects Rs 50k crore AUM by 2020 TATAMOTORS 11 Jun, 2018 Tata Motors is open to divesting stake in its financing arm, Tata Motors Finance, which is expected to have Rs 50,000 crore of assets under management by 2020, according to company officials. The auto major, however, intends to keep control in Tata Motors Finance Ltd (TMFL), an entity which it expects to play a key role in its future growth even as it sells a stake in other businesses or winds up some operations abroad as part of a restructuring exercise. "Of course, we are very clear that we will now continue to invest as far as Tata Motors Finance is concerned. We will maintain control as far as Tata Motors Finance is concerned. But clearly, there is no intention to say that it should always hold at 100 percent. That is also clear," Tata Motors Group CFO PB Balaji told analysts. He said the company expects "a very strong broad-based rebound" in TMFL, which saw 24 percent increase in assets under management (AUM) in 2017-18 at Rs 27,932 crore as against Rs 22,517 crore in 2016-17. "Probably the most heartening to see is gross NPA has gone from 18 percent last year (FY17) down to 4 percent (in FY18) and the business actually generates an ROE (return on equity) of 17 percent," Balaji added. Elaborating on strategic goals, Tata Motors Finance Ltd(TMFL) CEO Samrat Gupta said in an investor presentation that the company is aiming to be a "Rs 50,000 crore asset under management group" by 2020. As part of the plan, TMFL also plans to expand its reach by increasing total branches across India to 500 by 2020 from 270 at present, he added. Moreover, Gupta said TMFL is also targeting to "attain 20 percent sustainable ROE" by 2020. Apart from driving up financing of its new vehicles by TMFL, Tata Motors also looking at the financing arm to help its partner suppliers with poor financial health. Conducting the financial risk assessment of stressed vendors, providing assistance in correcting capital structure and financial working capital requirements are some of the areas that Tata Motors is looking to leverage on TMFL. The significance of TMFL to Tata Motors is in contrast to other businesses such as defence the sale of which is in progress. Balaji said Tata Motors is "now holding for sale of a stake in Tata Technologies as well as Tata Hitachi" and some small shareholding in other companies like Tata Steel. "We are winding up our Spain business (Tata Hispano), which is already in final stages as well as Tata Precision in Singapore has been wound up," he added....
17 RIL eyes to increase consumer businesses profits: Report RELIANCE 08 Jun, 2018 Reliance Industries (RIL) is reportedly targeting to increase its bottom-line from consumer-facing businesses viz. retail and telecoms to that of its core energy operations. The company will continue to evaluate and deploy wire line and wireless technologies for business solutions to consumers and enterprises. Moreover, the company is all set to become one of the largest non-conventional gas producers in India through the production of coalbed methane. RIL is India’s largest private sector company. The company’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
18 PremjiInvest buys 6% stake in Future Retail for ?1,700 crore OTHER 08 Jun, 2018 PremjiInvest, the family office of Wipro chairman Azim Premji, has picked up 6% stake in Future Retail Ltd, the company said. PremjiInvest bought the stake in a bulk deal from Cedar Support Services Ltd, a subsidiary of Bharti Ventures Ltd. The move comes weeks after the family office sold some of its stake in Future Lifestyle Fashions Ltd (FLF), another Future Group firm. The transaction is valued at ?1,700 crore and the retail arm of Future Group will see an inflow of ?600 crore following a claw-back arrangement between Future Retail and Bharti Ventures, a person close to the deal said on condition of anonymity. According to the claw-back agreement, if the deal value for the entire 9.2% stake is between ?950 crore and ?1,450 crore, Future Retail would get 50% of the amount over ?950 crore. If the deal is between ?1,450 crore and ?1,950 crore, Future Retail would get 60% of the amount over ?1,450 crore and if the deal value is greater than ?1,950 crore, Future Retail would get 75% of the amount over ?1,950 crore, Abneesh Roy, senior vice-president, institutional equities, Edelweiss Securities Ltd, explained in a note on Thursday. The total clawback to Future Retail would be ?962 crore in case the deal value is ?2,500 crore for the entire 9.2% stake, according to Roy. Last month, PremjiInvest sold 4% stake to Singapore-based private equity firm L Catterton Asia, which bought a total 10% stake for about ?780-800 crore in Kishore Biyani’s lifestyle arm FLF. The remaining 6% came from promoters who divested 4% and a primary issue of 2%. Earlier in May, Biyani had told Mint that he is in discussions with some of the world’s biggest retailers, technology companies and strategic investors, including Amazon.com Inc, the Walmart-Flipkart combine, Alphabet Inc.’s Google, Chinese firms such as Tencent Holdings Ltd and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, and Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp, to divest up to 10% equity. An announcement on the possible partner could be expected in the next two to three months, according to the person quoted above. Future Retail did not publish any official statement on the block deal. Future Retail gained 0.62% to close at ?571.40 per share on Thursday on the BSE, while the Sensex gained 0.81% to close at 35,463.08 points. Future Consumer Ltd gained 3.38% to close at ?53.55 per share, while FLF gained 0.59% to close at ?440.35 per share....
19 Tata Motors up over 1% as co plans to raise $250-500 m via ECBs TATAMOTORS 08 Jun, 2018 Shares of Tata Motors gained over a percent in the morning trade as investors bet on the firms’ fundraising plans. The stock has touched an intraday high of Rs 310.00 and an intraday low of Rs 302.60. The company on Thursday said that it proposed to raise funds of about USD 250-500 million through external commercial borrowing (ECB). All proceeds will be used towards refinancing a part of the principal amount of the borrower's notes as permitted under the ECB directions. Meanwhile, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) reported a rise of 6.1 percent in May sales to 48281 units driven by the introduction of new models including the Range Rover Velar, the Jaguar E-PACE and the new Land Rover Discovery. While Land Rover retail sales rose 6 percent to 33,774 units during May while Jaguar sales increased by 6.6 percent to 14,507 units. During the January-May period, JLR sales increased 1.6 percent to 188,443 units, a statement from Tata Motors said. The stock has lost around 7 percent in the past month, while in the past three days it rose over 8 percent. At 09:30 hrs Tata Motors was quoting at Rs 309.50, up Rs 4.20, or 1.38 percent, on the BSE....
20 Maruti Suzuki charges ahead with ambitious electric car plan MARUTI 06 Jun, 2018 Suzuki Motor Corp., the parent of India’s largest carmaker, aims to produce as many as 35,000 electric cars annually in India starting 2020-21, when it rolls out the first of these cars in the country, two people familiar with the matter said. “Suzuki will venture into the electric vehicle market quite late compared to some of its competitors. That’s why they wanted to make sure the foray into electric should be sustainable and gradually gain volume. The battery plant was crucial and now the management has internally decided on 30,000-35,000 units per annum from FY21,” said one of the two people, requesting anonymity. A spokesperson for Maruti Suzuki declined to “give any guidance”. While rivals such as Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd and Tata Motors Ltd are already manufacturing electric vehicles by sourcing half of the components from overseas vendors, Suzuki plans to set up the full ecosystem, starting with a lithium-ion battery plant, before unit Maruti begins selling the vehicles in India. If all goes as planned, Maruti may be the first carmaker in India to make electric cars with locally sourced components. “As of now, the target is to get approximately 2% of sales in 2021 but the infrastructure that Suzuki is creating for electric vehicles will help them hit the ground running. None of the other manufacturers as of now have any such plans,” said the first person cited above. Suzuki will source technology from Toyota Motor Corp. and Denso Corp. for the development of a compact and ultra high-efficiency powertrain for India and other global markets. Suzuki also has a tripartite joint venture with Denso and Toshiba to set up a lithium-ion battery factory in Gujarat. The EV market in India is still small, numbering 25,000 units at the end of 2016-17. Of this, nearly 92% were two-wheelers. Electric cars and four-wheelers accounted for less than 8% of the total sales, according to Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles. Mahindra’s plans are more ambitious. It plans to produce 60,000 electric vehicles annually starting 2020 as it seeks to benefit from its first-mover advantage. “Our electric vehicles story is poised to take off,” said Pawan Goenka, M&M managing director, in an interview to Mint in February. In a January interview, Maruti Suzuki managing director Kenichi Ayukawa said his firm will also establish charging stations in some areas in collaboration with dealers and business partners. According to the people cited above, manufacturing of Suzuki’s vehicles are likely to happen in Gujarat....
21 Tata Motors working on a dozen electric, hybrid vehicles TATAMOTORS 06 Jun, 2018 Betting big on greener vehicles for the future, Tata MotorsNSE 3.11 % in a presentation to investors on Tuesday informed that it is working on close to a dozen electric and hybrid vehicle solutions in the commercial vehicle space and is simultaneously moving towards adedicated electric vehicle platform in the passenger vehicle front. The company is planning to develop a 320 volts battery with a range of 300 plus kilometres which will deliver faster acceleration, efficiency, including fast charging. On Monday, Tata Motors had announced that it is setting up an electric mobility business vertical which will be headed by Shailesh Chandra, who also leads the corporate strategy division at the company. Having edged ahead of Mahindra to bag the L1 tender for EESL’s 10,000 electric vehicle contract, the company was able to deliver on the contract in the short span of four months, claimed Tata Motors. The company has also bagged 60% of electric bus order from the Ministry of Heavy Industries for plying in major cities. Chandra in his presentation to investors said the company aims at leading in EVs by offering optimised and accessible solution to the consumers. The company will immediately adopt a conversion route of existing vehicles —Tigor and Tiago — to EVs to address the immediate demand with an eye on optimising range and performance to maintain economic balance before eventually moving to 300-400-km package protected future platform to meet the long-term requirement. On the commercial vehicle front, Tata Motors will offer EV or hybrid solutions on Iris, Magic, Ace, Super Ace on the small commercial vehicle front and come out with fuel cell electric bus, pure battery-operated electric bus, a diesel hybrid bus, CNG hybrid, diesel-parallel hybrid bus. Apart from the dedicated electric vehicle architecture, the company has designed the new ALFA and OMEGA architecture for passenger vehicle to accommodate an electric powertrain. The company told the investors that they expect the commercial vehicle market to grow by lower double digit growth in the next two years and expect the passenger vehicle market to grow by 8% CAGR till 2023 to cross 5 million. ...
22 Bharti Airtel to partner with Verizon for IoT projects: Report BHARTIARTL 06 Jun, 2018 Bharti Airtel is reportedly in talks with US telecom major Verizon for a partnership in the domain of internet of things (IoT). The partnership is expected to be signed by the middle of June 2018. Under the partnership, Verizon’s global customers will be able to deploy solutions on Airtel’s IoT platforms as and when they have requirements in India. Similarly, Bharti Airtel customers will have access to Verizon’s IoT platforms. The partnership, when finalised, will also give Airtel access to Verizon’s large corporate customer base. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
23 Govt may enlist pharma firms for medicine bank OTHER 05 Jun, 2018 Drug makers may have to contribute medicines equivalent to at least 1% of their average profit in the past three years to create a medicine bank that will be used during public health emergencies in India or abroad, according to a government proposal. The contributions, which will be considered part of the firms’ mandatory corporate social responsibility (CSR) activity, will be used to provide free medicines during a public health crisis in India or in a foreign nation, the health ministry’s proposal said. While the contributions will be voluntary initially, the government is considering changes to the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945, to make it mandatory at a later stage. “The Drug Technical Advisory Board (at its 16 May meeting) decided that it should be left to companies to contribute on a voluntary basis but later, it will be made part of the rules, making it mandatory for the companies to share a part of their profit for a noble cause,” said S. Eswara Reddy, Drug Controller General of India. The latest proposal is among several measures through which the government has co-opted the private sector to deliver health care to its citizens. This time, the government has taken a step further in proposing to provide drugs in other countries also which are facing public health crises such as epidemics. The health ministry will soon take up the matter with the law ministry to make necessary changes to the drugs and cosmetics rules. “As long as it is out of the CSR provision, the industry would contribute happily as they would be saving lives of people,” said D.G. Shah, secretary general of the Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance, which represents 20 of the country’s biggest drug makers. CSR rules mandate companies with a net worth of more than Rs500 crore or revenue above Rs1,000 crore or net profit higher than Rs5 crore to spend 2% of their average profit in the last three years on social development-related activities. The medicine bank, according to three health ministry officials aware of the matter, can be used in case of epidemics in other countries as well and will help improve India’s ties with these nations. R.C. Juneja, chairman of Mankind Pharma Ltd, lauded the proposal. “We wholeheartedly welcome this move and endorse such a decision. It is a very good idea provided it is implemented properly”. Bejon Misra, founder of Patient Safety and Access Initiative of India Foundation and Partnership for Safe Medicines India Initiative, said India must make CSR funding public to improve safety, quality and accessibility of medicines to the vulnerable population....
24 Post merger, the name will simply be Bayer as 'Monsanto' becomes history MONSANTO 05 Jun, 2018 Bayer plans to complete the acquisition of Monsanto on June 7, following the receipt of all required approvals, in India and abroad, from regulatory authorities for the $63-billion combination of the two multinational companies. Globally, Bayer will remain the company name; all acquired products will retain their brand names and become part of the Bayer portfolio. In this country, Bayer CropScience Ltd and Monsanto India Ltd are both listed on the stock exchanges. Bayer stated: “Both companies will continue to operate independently. The relevant bodies of both entities will review the best possible option on the integration.” However, in a board meeting last Tuesday, Bayer CropScience decided to invest upto Rs 4 bn to acquire the shares of Monsanto through an open offer. Of late, Monsanto, the world’s largest maker of genetically modified (GM) seed, has been facing problems with some governments and with environmentalists. In India, it has decided to not introduce any new technologies in the GM segment or new varieties of cotton till issues with the government are resolved. All these have impacted the Monsanto brand value. Including Monsanto and taking divestitures into account, the total research and development investment of Bayer in 2017 would have been around €5.7 bn. Of that, €2.4 bn would have been spent in the combined agricultural business. Bayer had announced its intention to acquire Monsanto in May 2016 and signed an agreement with the US company for $128 per share in September 2016. Currently that corresponds to a total cost of about $63 billion taking into account Monsanto's debt outstanding as of February 28, 2018. “Bayer will become the sole shareholder of Monsanto on June 7,” said Werner Baumann, Chairman of the board of management of Bayer AG in a statement. According to the conditional approval from the United States Department of Justice, the integration of Monsanto into Bayer can take place as soon as the divestments to BASF have been completed. This is expected to be in approximately two months, he said. “We have diligently prepared for the upcoming integration over the past two years. Our extensive experience in integrating other large companies has proven that we can and will be successful,” Baumann said. Bayer will remain the company name. Monsanto will no longer be a company name. The acquired products will retain their brand names and become part of the Bayer portfolio. “The acquisition of Monsanto is a strategic milestone in strengthening our portfolio of leading businesses in health and nutrition. We will double the size of our agriculture business and create a leading innovation engine in agriculture...,” Baumann added. Stating that the acquisition is anticipated to generate significant value, Bayer said it expects a positive contribution to core earnings per share starting in 2019....
25 Govt weighs merger of Bank of Baroda, IDBI Bank, Oriental Bank, Central Bank OTHER 04 Jun, 2018 The government is considering merging at least four state-run banks, including Bank of Baroda, IDBI Bank Ltd, Oriental Bank of Commerce and Central Bank of India, two people aware of the matter said. If the plan goes through, the merged entity will become the second-largest bank in the country after State Bank of India, with combined assets of ?16.58 trillion. With the merger, the government hopes to help stem the rise in bad loans in their books at a time when poor asset quality has crippled the lending ability of some of them. The merger will also allow the weak banks to sell assets, reduce overheads and shut money-losing branches. The four banks that are being proposed to be merged are under pressure with combined losses of ?21,646.38 crore in the year ended 31 March. The department of financial services, under the finance ministry, is also simultaneously considering a 51% stake sale in IDBI Bank to a strategic partner, for ?9,000-10,000 crore, the people said on condition of anonymity. “Dilution of (government) stake in IDBI Bank could also be achieved through stake sale to private equity investors,” said one of the two people cited above. Queries emailed to IDBI Bank, Bank of Baroda, Oriental Bank of Commerce and Central Bank of India did not elicit any response. On 21 May, IDBI Bank told the exchanges in a regulatory filling that a special resolution will be placed for further issue of capital at its board meeting of 25 May. On the following day, IDBI Bank informed the exchanges about a scrutinizer report for an increase in the bank’s authorized capital from the existing ?4,500 crore to ?8,000 crore. The increase in authorized capital could facilitate the sale of a stake of 51% or more, in the form of a preferential issue to investors. Government officials declined to comment, saying the matter is highly market sensitive. In his 2016 budget speech, finance minister Arun Jaitley said that the government was considering reducing its stake in IDBI Bank to less than 50%. The government had merged SBI with five of its associate banks and Bharatiya Mahila Bank in April 2017....
26 Govt to ask ONGC to bear fuel subsidy to help cut petrol, diesel price ONGC 01 Jun, 2018 The government may ask state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) to bear fuel subsidy to help cut petrol and diesel prices, sources said. The government does not want to cut excise duty and is looking at alternative means to reduce petrol and diesel prices that had on Tuesday touched an all-time high of Rs 78.43 per litre and Rs 69.31 a litre respectively. Sources said the alternative in works is to ask ONGC give subsidy to fuel retailers so that they can sell petrol and diesel at below market rates. Oil producers ONGC and Oil India Ltd had till June 2015 made good as much as 40 per cent of the under-recoveries or subsidy arising out of selling fuel at below market price. The same subsidy sharing in some form is being brought back, they said. Sources said that meetings to decide on the subsidy sharing mechanism were on and an announcement may come as early as tomorrow. ONGC Chairman and Managing Director Shashi Shanker, before the news of meeting came to light, said that the company has not heard anything from the government on subsidy sharing. Petrol and diesel prices have in the last two days have been cut by 8 paisa and 6 paisa a litre, and the government is keen to show a visible reduction which can be possible only if retailers are subsidised. In the previous subsidy sharing scheme, ONGC sold oil to refiners at a discount....
27 ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar asked to be on leave till probe is over ICICIBANK 01 Jun, 2018 ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar has been asked to proceed on indefinite leave from the company she has helmed for almost a decade until an independent enquiry announced by the lender’s board to probe alleged cases of impropriety is concluded, according to a person with direct knowledge of the board’s decision. The decision to ask Kochhar to go on leave has been taken on the advice of a majority of the seven independent directors on the bank’s board, the person said. The enquiry, likely to be headed by a retired judge of the Supreme Court, will begin next week and will be completed in two months, he added. “A new whistleblower complaint came 15-20 days back. It came to our notice as well. The bank’s board and top management first met and then the independent directors decided to meet separately. So the independent directors met on 29 May. The charges made against the bank and its CEO are quite harsh and the independent directors thought that such allegations cannot be dealt with internally,” the person said on condition of anonymity. Kochhar’s leadership has come under a cloud following the resurfacing of allegations against her, including alleged conflict of interest over loans made to Videocon Group, whose chairman Venugopal Dhoot had business links with her husband Deepak Kochhar. The allegations first surfaced in 2016 but the bank’s board had given her a clean chit following an internal investigation. “After the previous whistleblower complaint in 2015-16, the board had conducted an internal probe but we can see that it did not help much. Shareholders, depositors, employees and everyone associated are still in doubts and raising various questions despite that probe. Hence, this time the independent directors decided to tell the bank to conduct an independent enquiry,” the person said. Although there was pressure from some institutional shareholders, the bank did not order an independent enquiry so far because the board was divided on the issue, said the person. “But the latest whistleblower charges, which are somewhat similar to the charges made by a whistleblower in 2016, compelled the independent directors to look for an external independent probe. Additional independent directors have been brought in by the bank,” added the person. Over the past two months, the bank has replaced two independent directors. It added a new one on Tuesday. The fresh probe will examine all the details since Kochhar’s appointment in May 2009, the person said, adding that the work of all committees in the bank, the top management, directors, their interactions with each other and customers through emails or phones will be scrutinized. The independent directors have also discussed with other board members a succession plan if Kochhar decides to quit prematurely or if any wrongdoing is discovered in the course of the independent enquiry, the person said. “The bank, apparently, has told some of the shareholders and directors that an expert headhunter will be appointed for shortlisting a new CEO for the bank. The bank’s business is not bad, but the reputational risk is too high right now,” added the person. The new whistleblower complaint came soon after the bank’s board met on 7 May, said another person directly aware of the development. On 28 March, the ICICI Bank board had issued a statement reposing its confidence in the corporate governance of the lender and the integrity of Kochhar. The board was aware of a 2016 Reserve Bank of India probe on this issue and considered that information before giving her a clean chit....
28 Reliance Infrastructure gets nod to raise funds up to Rs 385 crore RELINFRA 01 Jun, 2018 Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra) has received an approval to raise funds up to Rs 385 crore. The Committee of Directors at its meeting held on May 31, 2018 has approved issuance of Secured Rated Listed Redeemable Non Convertible, privately placed Debentures. RInfra is one of the largest infrastructure companies, developing projects through various Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) in several high growth sectors such as Power, Roads and Metro Rail in the Infrastructure space and the Defence sector. ...
29 HCL Technologies, JDA Software enter into collaboration HCL-INSYS 01 Jun, 2018 HCL Technologies and JDA Software, Inc. have entered into a collaboration to extend the value of JDA Commerce, SofTechnics, and Pricing and Revenue Management solutions through modernizing the solutions’ architecture and shifting to a SaaS model. Under the terms of the partnership, HCL Technologies will join forces with JDA on development, product support, and go-to-market (GTM) initiatives for JDA’s Commerce, SofTechnics, and Pricing and Revenue Management solutions. This alliance will leverage the collective forces of both companies to increase services capabilities for these solutions, enable new and enhanced product innovations, and allow expansions into new markets also leveraging other portfolio products. The alliance also aims to ensure best-in-class customer experience and support. Existing JDA customers of these solutions will continue to engage with JDA as their primary partner but will be further complemented by HCL services and resources. HCL Technologies is a leading global IT services company that helps global enterprises re–imagine and transform their businesses through digital technology transformation. ...
30 UltraTech Cement Gets Lenders’ Approval To Acquire Binani Cement ULTRACEMCO 31 May, 2018 Lenders of Binani Cement Ltd. today approved the resolution plan submitted by UltraTech Cement Ltd., as part of the insolvency resolution process. The committee of creditors had approved the plan in a meeting yesterday, and issued the letter of intent today, UltraTech said in a filing to the stock exchanges. The Kumar Mangalam Birla-backed company beat a rival consortium that included Dalmia Bharat Ltd. and a Bain Capital-backed fund. The resolution plan is now subject to approval by the National Company Law Tribunal. Financial creditors led by Edelweiss Asset Reconstruction Company Ltd. voted to accept UltraTech’s Rs 7,950 crore offer as the highest bid, BloombergQuint had reported on May 28. If approved, the acquisition will boost UltraTech’s capacity to 116.15 million tonnes per annum, according to the exchange filing. It will also give the Aditya Birla Group company access to Binani Cement’s large reserves of high quality limestone. The announcement comes after the NCLT had asked lenders to reconsider UltraTech Cement’s bid after they had rejected it earlier. UltraTech Cement was not allowed to revise its bid for Binani Cement since lenders had agreed to not entertain the second highest bidder in the case. UltraTech Cement tried multiple times to revise its bid for Binani Cement, however, the creditors did not consider it. Thereafter, in a parallel deal, UltraTech signed an agreement with Binani Industries Ltd. to buy its cement assets for Rs 7,266 crore and said it will seek termination of the insolvency process. This decision was subject to lenders agreeing to withdraw from the NCLT. However, this agreement did not go anywhere since lenders declined to settle out of court. In its May 2 order, the NCLT said that the decision of the creditors’ panel to deny UltraTech an opportunity to be heard once its resolution plan was rejected is unfair, unjust and against the very objective of the IBC. It stated that the resolution professional and the CoC are duty bound to ensure value maximisation for shareholders of Binani Cement. The lenders’ argument that UltraTech had sent an offer on email and did not adhere to the timelines and process is not substantive, the NCLT ruled....
31 SAIL Improves Profitability As Production Ramp-Up Yields Results SAIL 31 May, 2018 Steel Authority of India Ltd.’s profit rose for the second straight quarter on the back of record steel production and an exceptional gain . The state-run steel producer reported a profit of Rs 816 crore in the March-ended quarter compared to a loss of Rs 771 crore last year, according to its stock exchange filing. That compares with Rs 524 crore estimated by analysts polled by Bloomberg. That bottom line was aided by a Rs 377 crore exceptional gain which included writebacks for royalty payments, salary revisions and staff benefits. Revenue rose 34.4 percent over last year to Rs 17,038 crore, higher than the Bloomberg consensus estimate of Rs 16,206 crore. The sustained effort of process integration, intensive marketing, ramping up production and stabilisation of new mills are yielding results and helped the company’s financials, SAIL said in a media statement. “The domestic market is showing very good growth signs, which is backed up strongly by the government's initiative to enhance domestic steel consumption. The on-going and upcoming large infrastructure projects offer large scope for steel consumption,” chairman PK Singh said in the statement. The steelmaker recorded its best ever sales in volume in a year in the financial year 2017-18. Volume rose 7.4 percent over the previous fiscal to 14.08 million tonnes. Even during the quarter, crude steel production rose 6 percent to 4 million tonnes, its best quarterly sales on record. Concast production also increased 8 percent to a record 3.4 million tonne during the quarter. It now expects a demand to improve thanks to the government’s infrastructure push. SAIL’s array of new products will befit the demands of retail, rural as well as larger projects. The company is poised to march ahead in the growth path and is enabled to explore the positive demand sentiments. PK Singh, Chairman, SAIL Operational Performance Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation stood at Rs 2,347 crore versus an Ebitda loss of Rs 265 crore. Operating margin stood at 13.8 percent. Shares of the steelmaker closed 1.43 percent higher ahead of the earnings announcement. The stock fell 23.8 percent between January and March, compared to a 3.2 percent decline in the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex Index....
32 M&M planning to raise funds up to Rs 5,000 crore M&M 22 May, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) is planning to raise funds by way of issuance of Securities including but not limited to secured/unsecured redeemable Non-convertible Debentures (NCDs) under Private Placement basis for an aggregate amount not exceeding Rs 5,000 crore. The meeting of the Board of Directors of the company will be held on May 29, 2018 to consider the same. Besides, the shareholders of the company, at the last AGM held on August 04, 2017, had approved the same. Since the approval of the shareholders in case of offer or invitation for Non-convertible Debentures has a validity of one year in terms of Section 42 of the Companies Act, 2013 read with Rule 14 of the companies (Prospectus and Allotment of Securities) Rules, 2014, it is proposed to seek fresh approval from shareholders by way of a Special Resolution at the ensuing AGM. M&M is the flagship company of the Mahindra Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. Amongst the various business interests of its parent group, the company is mainly involved in the automobile manufacturing. It is one of the leading auto companies of India. ...
33 DLF gets nod to raise funds up to Rs 2,500 crore via NCDs DLF 22 May, 2018 DLF has received approval for raising of funds through Non-Convertible Debentures (NCDs) and/or other debt instruments for an amount not exceeding Rs 2,500 crore. The meeting of the Board of Directors of the company held on May 21 2018, approved the same. DLF is one of India's biggest property developers. The company’s primary business is development of residential, commercial and retail properties. The company has a unique business model with earnings arising from development and rentals. ...
34 Coal India planning to raise supplies by a minimum of 15 MT: Report COALINDIA 22 May, 2018 Coal India is reportedly planning to raise supplies by at least 15 million tonnes (MT) annually in the weeks to come, as the company has almost completed three new rail projects linked to high-capacity mines. The additional supply will be enough to fuel almost 4,000 MW of power plants through the year, which will rise as more coal is transported, the executives said. The increased availability comes as demand for power rises with temperatures climbing in the summer. The new rail links will benefit mines belonging to Coal India subsidiaries Central Coalfields, Mahanadi Coalfields and South Eastern Coalfields. Coal India is the world’s largest coal mining company. It also produces non-coking coal and coking coal of various grades for diverse applications. ...
35 Glenmark submits New Drug Application for Ryaltris to USFDA GLENMARK 22 May, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has submitted a New Drug Application (NDA) to the US Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for its leading respiratory pipeline candidate Ryaltris, an investigational fixed-dose combination nasal spray of an antihistamine and a steroid, as a treatment for seasonal allergic rhinitis (SAR) in patients 12 years of age and older. Ryaltris (olopatadine hydrochloride (665 mcg) and mometasone furoate (25 mcg)), formerly GSP 301 Nasal Spray, has been conditionally accepted by the FDA as the brand name. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals is a global pharmaceutical company. The company is engaged in the development of new chemical entities (NCEs) and new biological entities (NBEs). Its segments are India, United States, Latin America, Europe and Rest of the World (ROW). ...
36 Suven Life Sciences secures product patents in New Zealand, Norway SUVEN 22 May, 2018 Suven Life Sciences has secured one product patent from New Zealand and one product patent from Norway corresponding to the New Chemical Entities (NCEs) for the treatment of disorders associated with Neurodegenerative diseases and these Patents are valid through 2034 and 2027 respectively. The granted claims of the patents include the class of selective 5HT6 compounds and are being developed as therapeutic agents for major depressive disorders and for the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, Attention deficient hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Huntington’s disease, Parkinson and Schizophrenia respectively. Suven Life Science is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing novel pharmaceutical products, which are first in class or best in class CNS therapies using GPCR targets. ...
37 UltraTech Cement to acquire cement business of Century Textiles ULTRACEMCO 21 May, 2018 UltraTech Cement has received approval to acquire the cement business of Century Textiles and Industries. The meeting of the Board of Directors of the company held on May 20, 2018, has approved a scheme of arrangement amongst the both companies and its respective shareholders and creditors. The company will issue 1.4 crore new equity shares to the shareholders of Century, which will increase its equity capital to Rs 288.58 crore, divided into 28.86 crore equity shares of Rs 10 each. UltraTech Cement is the largest manufacturer of grey cement, Ready Mix Concrete (RMC) and white cement in India. It is also one of the leading cement producers globally. UltraTech as a brand embodies strength, reliability and innovation. ...
38 Dabur India to invest Rs 300 crore in capacity expansion in FY19 DABUR 21 May, 2018 Dabur India is planning to invest Rs 250-300 crore in capacity expansion in FY19. The FMCG firm is also looking for acquisitions in the domestic market going forward. The company has just done a couple of acquisitions in South Africa, and is looking at doing something substantial in India going forward. The FMCG major had last month completed acquisitions of two South Africa-based firms D&A Cosmetics Proprietary and Atlanta Body & Health Products Proprietary through its subsidiary. Dabur India is one of the largest FMCG Company in India. Building on a legacy of quality and experience of over 125 years, Dabur operates in key consumer products categories like Hair Care, Oral Care, Health Care, Skin Care, Home Care & Foods. ...
39 Glenmark receives ANDA approval for Colesevelam Hydrochloride Tablets GLENMARK 21 May, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc., USA (Glenmark) has been granted final approval by the United States Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for Colesevelam Hydrochloride Tablets, 625 mg, the generic version of Welchol Tablets, 625 mg, of Daiichi Sankyo. The company has already commenced supplies of the product to the US market. According to IQVIA sales data for the 12 month period ending March 2018, Welchol Tablets, 625 mg market achieved annual sales of approximately $519.9 million. Glenmark’s current portfolio consists of 135 products authorized for distribution in the US marketplace and 62 ANDA’s pending approval with the USFDA. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals is a global pharmaceutical company. The company is engaged in the development of new chemical entities (NCEs) and new biological entities (NBEs). Its segments are India, United States, Latin America, Europe and Rest of the World (ROW). ...
40 Tata Steel’s arm completes acquisition of controlling stake in Bhushan Steel TATASTEEL 21 May, 2018 Tata Steel’s wholly-owned subsidiary -- Bamnipal Steel has successfully completed the acquisition of controlling stake of 72.65% in Bhushan Steel. The company will be paying Rs 1,200 to operational creditors of Bhushan Steel over a period of 12 months. Tata Steel, the flagship company of the Tata group is the first integrated steel plant in Asia and is now the world’s second most geographically diversified steel producer and a Fortune 500 Company. ...
41 RIL gets environmental clearance for expansion project in Maharashtra RELIANCE 21 May, 2018 Reliance Industries (RIL) has received environment clearance for the expansion and optimisation of its petrochemical complex at Nagothane in Raigad district of Maharashtra at an estimated cost of Rs 2,338 crore. The approval, given based on the recommendations of an expert panel, is subject to compliance of certain conditions. The proposal is to expand the gas cracker and downstream plants located at Nagothane village in Raigad district by way of debottlenecking, expansion and change of fuel in captive power plant (CPP) along with expansion and rebuilding of residential township. RIL is India’s largest private sector company. The company’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
42 Tata Chemicals Expects A Revival In Revenue In FY19 TATACHEM 21 May, 2018 After reporting flat revenue growth in the January-March quarter, Tata Chemicals Ltd. expects a revival in the financial year 2018-19. Revenue of the maker of Tata Salt remained nearly flat at Rs 2,555 crore, the company said in its filings to the stock exchanges. Net profit rose 23 percent to Rs 356 crore year-on-year as margins expanded during the quarter. Operating margin expanded to 20.1 percent from 18.9 percent in the same quarter last year even as raw material costs rose. “Raw material costs is a concern, energy costs have been increasing, we also expect due to the oil price change, the transportation costs will increase,” R Mukundan, managing director of Tata Chemicals told BloombergQuint in an interview. He expects margins to remain at current levels as “positive market conditions” offset the negative impact of high input costs. Tata Chemicals is focusing on expanding its consumer business and hopes to double the reach of its pulses to around 80,000 retail outlets in FY19. Revenue from this business will touch Rs 5,000 crore in the next three to four years, Mukundan said. The company has added nutrimixes like khichdi and chila mix to its portfolio and looks to launch more such products as it believes the market is still underpenetrated. The company currently has become cash positive on a standalone basis, but it also plans to become debt free even on its consolidated basis, however, it won’t be in the current financial year. The company’s net debt stands at Rs 1,800 crore, said Mukundan. Shares of Tata Chemicals have fallen 1.6 percent in 2018, compared to the 2.3 percent increase in the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex Index....
43 JSW Steel’s arm enters into agreement to acquire steel facilities at Piombino JSWSTEEL 19 May, 2018 JSW Steel’s subsidiary - JSW Steel Italy S.r.l. has entered into a Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA) on May 17, 2018 with Cevitaly S.r.l (Cevitaly), a company organized under the laws of Italy, for acquisition of 100% shares of Aferpi S.p.A (Aferpi), Piombino Logistics S.p.A (PL) and 69.27% of the share capital of GSI Lucchini S.p.A (GSI) for a cash consideration of 55 million euro on a cash free, debt free basis subject to closing adjustments including for working capital of the respective targets. The above facilities are located in Piombino, Tuscany Province, Italy. The transaction is subject to fulfillment of conditions precedents and other customary terms generally applicable to such transactions as per the SPA. JSW Steel is one of the largest steel manufacturing companies in India having units in Karnataka and Maharashtra producing crude steel, long steel and flat steel products. ...
44 RCom says in advanced talks with Ericsson to resolve issues RCOM 19 May, 2018 Reliance Communications Ltd (RCom) said it was in advanced talks with Ericsson to resolve “commercial issues”, after two people indicated it was currently uncertain if the firms’ discussions over dues would lead to an out-of-court settlement. Earlier this week, India’s bankruptcy court admitted a plea by the Swedish telecom gearmaker seeking insolvency resolution against debt-laden Reliance Communications (RCom) over unpaid service dues, potentially derailing the company’s plans to sell assets to larger rival Reliance Jio. Ericsson, which signed a seven-year deal in 2014 to operate and manage RCom’s nationwide telecoms network, is seeking Rs1,155 crore from RCom and two of its subsidiaries. “We confirm that RCom and Ericsson are at an advanced stage of discussions to expeditiously resolve commercial issues,” the company said in a securities filing on Friday, adding a resolution would enable it to exit the bankruptcy court process. RCom is also confident of “expeditiously” proceeding on its asset sale deal agreed with Jio and the overall debt resolution plan agreed with its creditor banks, it said in the statement. One of the two people who spoke to Reuters earlier on Friday, said RCom had approached Ericsson, but with a lack of clarity around payment of dues “a settlement currently looks uncertain”. The two, who asked not to be named as the talks are private, said Ericsson could withdraw its plea if an out-of-court understanding is reached. Ericsson said it does not comment on speculation. Shares in RCom, controlled by billionaire Anil Ambani, had soared 30% on reports of settlement talks with Ericsson, but reversed gains to trade down 2.7%. The Mumbai market was down 0.7%. With debt totalling Rs45,733 crore at end-March 2017, RCom is the most-leveraged of all listed telecom carriers in India. To raise funds, RCom announced plans late last year to sell most of its wireless assets to mobile carrier Reliance Jio infocomm Ltd in a deal said to be worth about $3.8 billion. Reliance Jio, the telecoms venture of Reliance Industries Ltd, is controlled by India’s richest man and Anil’s elder brother, Mukesh Ambani. Reliance Group companies have sued HT Media Ltd, Mint’s publisher, and nine others in the Bombay high court over a 2 October 2014 front-page story that they have disputed. HT Media is contesting the case....
45 Himatsingka Seide acquires the exclusive licensing rights for Tommy Hilfiger Home HIMATSEIDE 19 May, 2018 Himatsingka America Inc., the wholly owned step down subsidiary of Himatsingka Seide Ltd, has acquired the home portfolio of Global Brands Group Holding Limited. The company has mentioned in its filing on BSE that the acquired home portfolio includes the exclusive license rights to the famous and iconic Tommy Hilfiger brand, the Copper Fit brand and other brands. This move will help the company in revenue growth and gaining market share, as this brand portfolio is estimated to contribute annual revenues of US$60-65mn to the group. Its subsidiary, DWI Holdings, has exclusive licenses for sourcing, marketing and distribution of luxury home textile brands like Calvin Klein Home, Barbara Barry and Bellora Hospitality in North America. Company’s new terry towel facility will have installed capacity of 25,000 tonnes, which is expected to start production from Q1FY20E. The scrip opened at Rs357.20 and has touched a high and low of Rs379 and Rs355 respectively. So far 1,96,630 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs3,502.22cr....
46 RPower sells stake in Tilaiya UMPP to Jharkhand utility for ?112 crore RPOWER 19 May, 2018 Reliance Power of the Anil Ambani-led Reliance Group has sold its entire stake in Jharkhand Integrated Power, an SPV created for the development of the 3,960 MW Tilaiya Ultra Mega Power Project (UMPP), to the State utility, Jharkhand Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd (JUVNL), for ?112.64 crore. JUVNL was the lead procurer from the Tilaiya UMPP. Apart from receiving ?112 crore for the stake in the SPV, Reliance Power is likely to get bank guarantees of ?600 crore released from power buyers, sources close to the development said. Risk management The transaction was designed back in 2015, when Reliance Power pulled out of the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) of Tilaiya UMPP citing delays in land acquisition for the project. This also paves the way for the resolution of the 4,000- MW project of Reliance Power- Krishnapatnam UMPP in Andhra Pradesh. This project, awarded in 2007, could not be taken forward as the coal from Indonesia became pricier, the company had said earlier. According to company sources, the negotiations on the Krishnapatnam UMPP are going on as the process involves over 10 power buyers in five States. Speaking at the company’s 23rd Annual General Meeting in September, 2017, Anil Ambani, Chairman, Reliance Power, said that risk management initiatives taken with respect to Tilaiya and Krishnapatnam are “well on track.” “It effectively reduces future capex pipeline by ?56,000 crore,” he said, adding that the company has been continuously bringing down its leverage which will reduce further if the company, among other efforts, puts its stranded gas-based power generation capacity on track.Reliance Power of the Anil Ambani-led Reliance Group has sold its entire stake in Jharkhand Integrated Power, an SPV created for the development of the 3,960 MW Tilaiya Ultra Mega Power Project (UMPP), to the State utility, Jharkhand Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd (JUVNL), for ?112.64 crore. JUVNL was the lead procurer from the Tilaiya UMPP. Apart from receiving ?112 crore for the stake in the SPV, Reliance Power is likely to get bank guarantees of ?600 crore released from power buyers, sources close to the development said. Risk management The transaction was designed back in 2015, when Reliance Power pulled out of the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) of Tilaiya UMPP citing delays in land acquisition for the project. This also paves the way for the resolution of the 4,000- MW project of Reliance Power- Krishnapatnam UMPP in Andhra Pradesh. This project, awarded in 2007, could not be taken forward as the coal from Indonesia became pricier, the company had said earlier. According to company sources, the negotiations on the Krishnapatnam UMPP are going on as the process involves over 10 power buyers in five States. Speaking at the company’s 23rd Annual General Meeting in September, 2017, Anil Ambani, Chairman, Reliance Power, said that risk management initiatives taken with respect to Tilaiya and Krishnapatnam are “well on track.” “It effectively reduces future capex pipeline by ?56,000 crore,” he said, adding that the company has been continuously bringing down its leverage which will reduce further if the company, among other efforts, puts its stranded gas-based power generation capacity on track....
47 RIL’s telecom arm enters into exclusive partnership with Screenz RELIANCE 18 May, 2018 Reliance Industries’ (RIL) telecom arm - Reliance Jio Infocomm (Jio) has entered into exclusive partnership for the Indian market with Screenz, the most powerful platform for entertainment-based interactivity used by world’s top broadcasters and format owners. With this exclusive partnership, Jio Screenz will become the largest platform and one of the only integrated providers of entertainment-based gamification in India. The partnership will add to Jio’s existing platform for gamification, which has proven itself time and again, as seen during the on-going Jio Cricket Play Along, where it has enrolled over 65 million unique users already, who are consistently playing the game as well as the Jio Kaun Banega Crorepati Play Along game, where it took KBC to every home and therefore in the common man’s reach. RIL is India’s largest private sector company. The company’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
48 Godrej Agrovet’s arm intends to invest Rs 400 crore in milk processing plants GODREJAGRO 18 May, 2018 Godrej Agrovet’s subsidiary - Creamline Dairy Products (CDPL), as a part of its expansion plans, intends to invest Rs 400 crore in three greenfield milk processing plants in Tamil Nadu, North Karnataka and Maharashtra over the period of next three years. CDPL had recently acquired a processing plant in Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu and is in the process of setting up another plant in Vishakhapatnam. The objectives behind this proposed expansion, include growing the share of value-added milk products. In view of the same, it is expected that the milk processing capacity of CDPL would increase from 12 lakh litres per day to 15 lakh litres per day. Godrej Agrovet is a diversified, research and development focused agri-business company with operations across five business verticals i.e. animal feed, crop protection, oil palm, dairy, and poultry and processed foods ...
49 Sun Pharma launches AG version of Welchol Tablets in US SUNPHARMA 18 May, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries through one of its wholly owned subsidiaries has launched in US, the Authorized Generic (AG) version for Daiichi Sankyo Inc.’s Welchol (colesevelam hydrochloride) 625mg tablets. Welchol Tablets recorded US sales of approximately $520 million for the 12 months ending March 2018, as per IQVIA. The launch is pursuant to a distribution and supply agreement between Sun Pharma’s wholly owned subsidiary and Daiichi Sankyo Inc., which grants the Sun Pharma subsidiary, exclusive rights to distribute these tablets in the US for a pre-determined period. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
50 Tata Steel Is Said to Seek Loan for Bhushan Steel Asset Purchase TATASTEEL 18 May, 2018 Tata Steel Ltd. is preparing a 115 billion rupee ($1.7 billion) loan to help fund its purchase of assets from Bhushan Steel Ltd., people familiar with the matter said. The producer is in talks with banks about a six-month bridge facility, which it aims to refinance with a loan that would mature in about 15 years, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private. The acquisition would help Mumbai-based Tata in its goal to double production in five years, as it also plans further expansion at its Kalinganagar plant. The new facility would be the largest Indian local-currency loan since HPCL-Mittal Energy Ltd.’s 134.4 billion rupee loan, signed in May 2017, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Read more about Tata Steel getting approval for the asset purchase Lenders in talks with Tata for the loan include Axis Bank Ltd., HDFC Bank Ltd., IndusInd Bank Ltd., Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd., Standard Chartered Plc, State Bank of India and Yes Bank Ltd., the people said. A Tata Steel spokesman didn’t immediately reply to an email seeking comment on the planned borrowing. A Tata Steel unit sold 50 billion rupees of three-month commercial paper to also help fund the Bhushan asset purchase, separate people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday....
51 Suven Life Sciences secures product patents in Australia, Singapore SUVEN 17 May, 2018 Suven Life Sciences has secured two product patents from Australia and one product patent from Singapore, corresponding to the New Chemical Entities (NCEs) for the treatment of disorders associated with Neurodegenerative diseases and these Patents are valid through 2034. The granted claims of the patents include the class of selective H3 Inverse agonists and 5HT6 compounds respectively and are being developed as therapeutic agents for major depressive disorders and for the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, Attention deficient hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Huntington’s disease, Narcolepsy, Parkinson and Schizophrenia respectively. Suven Life Science is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing novel pharmaceutical products, which are first in class or best in class CNS therapies using GPCR targets. ...
52 Hindustan Adhesives commences production at its new plant in Kutch HINDUSTAN ADHESIVES 17 May, 2018 Hindustan Adhesives has completed the expansion of its BOPP Packaging Tapes manufacturing capacity by way of setting up new plant with an installed capacity of 216 Million Square Meter per annum at Survey No. 380, village Bhadreswar, Taluka Mundra, District Kutch in state of Gujarat. The company has also commenced the production at said plant. Hindustan Adhesives is engaged in manufacturing of self-adhesive tapes and polyolefin (POF) film. The company’s adhesive tape products include self-adhesive tear tapes, carton tear tapes, tear tapes, packaging tapes, convenience tapes and security tapes. ...
53 Competition Will Help Premium Biscuits Grow Faster, Says Britannia’s MD Varun Berry BRITANNIA 17 May, 2018 Britannia Industries Ltd. isn’t worried about the competition it faces from its rivals ITC Ltd. and Parle Products Pvt. Ltd. in India’s premium biscuits market. The company is the nation’s second-largest biscuit maker and the leader in the premium category. Its peers are also building their premium portfolios and supporting them with aggressive advertisement campaigns, Britannia’s Managing Director Varun Berry told BloombergQuint. “We are glad that everyone is making the right moves because it will make sure that the segment grows much faster than the overall biscuit market,” he said. “Us being the market leader in the segment, the advantage will be with us if we do the right things.” Britannia plans initiatives to generate demand to help it maintain a double-digit volume growth seen in the last two quarters. This partly depends on a stable inflation rate in its commodity basket. While the prices of milk, sugar and flour have reduced, oil prices increased by a large margin. So far, there has been a small inflation in the overall commodity basket which is “manageable”, Berry said. Another factor in securing advantage is “democratising” the premium products so that they’re available to those who are not willing to spend much on such products. Britannia Industries had earlier told BloombergQuint that it will make its premium brands affordable by offering smaller packs to make deeper inroads into the hinterland. “It’s a very important part of our strategy,” Berry said. Keeping up with new technology that helps bring in products that are first to the Indian market is also crucial, he said. Parle, the country’s largest biscuit maker, has expanded its offerings under its Platina brand. The segment, which includes flavoured ‘Hide & Seek’ biscuits and ‘Milano’ cookies, contributes 15 percent to its revenue. This is expected to grow to 25 percent as of this March, Mayank Shah, category head of Parle Products, told Business Line in February. ITC’s bakery segment has also introduced a line of ‘Farmlite’ digestive biscuits and cookies under the ‘Dark Fantasy’ brand, in direct competition with Britannia’s ‘Nutri Choice’ digestive biscuits and ‘Good Day’ chocolate chunk cookies. Work-In-Progress Hindi-speaking states such as Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh are a weak spot and a growing opportunity for Britannia, Berry said. “We are at best a distant second or even a third player in some of these states,” he said, adding increasing geographical distribution is one its key areas of focus for the financial year. The company is looking to come up with more premium and value-added products instead of basic milk products, he said. Cheese, for instance, is a high value-added product for the company. While other dairy product makers may be benefitted from lower milk prices, “we are not looking at getting into basic products because the value added is not enough to give us enough of a premium or profit”, he said. We all know that Britannia has created a very strong niche in premium products. But what is Britannia doing to deepen the moat and tackle competition in areas that it was always strong in? You’re talking about the premium products I’m guessing. We are certainly the strongest but we are not the only one. I do think ITC has a fairly strong premium portfolio. Even Parle has been trying to build a strong premium portfolio and they have been advertising pretty heavily. But remember one thing, when competition grows in a certain segment, the growth in that segment becomes much higher than it has ever been. I’m glad that everyone is making the right moves in the premium segment because this will make sure that the segment grows much faster than the overall biscuit market. And obviously, being the market leaders in the segment, the advantage will be to us if we do all the right things, if we create the right portfolio and if we continue to bring the choices for the consumers and that’s exactly what we plan to do. And that will involve adapting your product strategy to the market? Definitely, and also bringing in the right technologies to develop products which are first to market, which are very different from what consumers have tasted in the market. Also, democratising the product to make sure it doesn’t just become a product for a person who can afford it, but there is a certain SKU (stock keeping unit) even for people who are not willing to spend a lot of money on indulgent products. We have seen a softening in the prices of sugar milk and wheat. Your operating margins have increased and so have the volumes. Entering FY19, what’s the focus going to be like? Is it going to be on volume growth? And if the prices continue to soften, will you re-look at product pricing? Just to clarify, while there has been a softening in commodity prices such as sugar, flour and milk is concerned, there has been a fairly high inflation as far as oil is concerned. The oil import duties have gone up from 7.5 percent to 48 percent. so overall there has been small inflation in the basket which is manageable in the overall commodity basket. Hopefully, as we go forward, things will remain as they are, inflation will remain within a certain band. And that will give us the ability to maintain prices and that we are able to work on all the demand-generative initiatives that are up our sleeve this year. That would also make sure that the volume growths and the revenue growth stay at the level at which Indian should be reflecting. I have always dreamed about double digit volume growth. Now we have had two quarters of volume growth and we are hoping we are able to continue with it. In which geographies do you still think there needs work to be done in terms of Britannia’s products? The Hindi belt continues to be our weakest area. We have seen a lot of traction in our market share and our distribution in those areas but we are still distant second, or a number three player. So that will continue to be our focus. We will make sure that we continue to focus on distribution, demand generation and market share growth in the Hindi belt. But that is not the only area of weakness., There are other states as well which have segments where we have got some work to do. So, we continue to work through all of these to make sure we continue to see a distribution game. Last year has been one year where our distribution numbers have been growing month on month and that gives me a lot of confidence in what our team can perform and what we can take this company to. How are you tackling competition when other dairy players businesses are stepping into value added products? As far as dairy is concerned, the milk prices have been soft and that is giving tailwinds to dairy players. However, our strategy is not to be in every dairy category possible. We would like to be only in the value-added categories. So out of the portfolio that we have today, the most value-added part of the portfolio is cheese. So, as we go forward we would like to make sure that we put a back-end for cheese. We start to produce products which are value added, which have the right traction with the consumers and that really is what we are looking at. We are not looking to getting into products which are [made of] milk because the amount of value addition in those products is not enough to give us premium and a profit in those categories. ...
54 HUL on the verge of overtaking ITC in market cap HINDUNILVR 17 May, 2018 Cigarette-to-soap maker ITC Ltd’s shares rose 1.5% on Wednesday, even though its March quarter net profit just about met Street expectations. Worse, revenues were 11% lower than Bloomberg consensus estimates. It’s not that there were any hidden gems in the company’s results; rather, there is a fancy for consumer sector stocks in the markets currently. In fact, ITC is only enjoying a rub-off effect; other consumer goods stocks are doing far better. Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL), ITC’s nemesis in the market cap tables, has caught up dramatically in the past year, as the chart above shows. A year ago, ITC’s market cap was 60% ahead; the gap has shrunk to merely 2.4%. There have been earlier occasions in 2018 when the gap has narrowed, though not to this extent. HUL is on the verge of overtaking ITC at this point, for the first time after it ceded the pole position back in 2005. The divergence in the performance of the two stocks is sort of reflective of differing fortunes in terms of volume growth. HUL’s growth of 11% was far ahead of estimates, while ITC’s growth, or the lack of it, remains a concern. ITC does not provide volume details but Dolat Capital Market Pvt. Ltd estimates a 2-4% decline in cigarette volumes during the March quarter. From an investor’s perspective, this amounts to small mercy, as it compares favourably with a 5% estimated decline in volumes in the December quarter. ITC has said that volume growth is getting affected by the large pictorial warnings. And while the worst of harsh taxes may be behind it, policy-related concerns may continue to weigh on growth. The silver lining is that in ITC’s case, while its revenues may have been lower than expected, there are signs of improvement in its business segments, leading to better profitability sequentially in most of its divisions. The cigarettes business, which accounted for as much as 87% of ITC’s total segment Ebit, saw a 7% improvement as against the December quarter. Ebit is earnings before interest and tax. ITC’s consumer goods business did well with comparable sales growth of 11.3% over a year ago, but it was lower than HUL’s 16% growth. Although this segment’s Ebit growth was impressive, this could change once ITC begins to invest heavily in growing the business, which is its main priority. Still, analysts say that ITC’s consumer goods business Ebit of nearly 3% is rather encouraging. On a sequential basis, its margins were down slightly but this was chiefly due to a decline in the agricultural exports segment margins. But given the sluggishness in cigarettes volumes, it isn’t surprising that ITC shares have underperformed at a time when most FMCG stock valuations are running ahead of their fundamentals and are expensive. Currently, the ITC stock trades at 27-times estimated earnings for this fiscal year, based on Bloomberg data. That appears rather cheap when compared to the nearly 55 times FY19 expected earnings that HUL is trading at. An improving profitability outlook for the cigarettes business does raise the prospect of better valuations for ITC but for that volume growth will have to look up....
55 JSW Steel to invest Rs 17,600 cr more to up capacity to 24.7 mt JSWSTEEL 17 May, 2018 Sajjan Jindal-led JSW Steel today said the company has decided to invest an additional Rs 17,600 crore for increasing its steel capacity to 24.7 million tonne per annum (mtpa) by 2020. "Looking at the domestic demand growth, we see a shortage of steel if we don't expand in the next two years," JSW Steel joint managing director and group chief financial officer Seshagiri Rao told reporters here while announcing almost two-fold rise in consolidated net profit to Rs 2,879 crore in the March quarter, against Rs 1,008 crore in the year-ago quarter. "We have decided to expand our capacity from 18 mt (million tonne) to 24.7 mt, which includes addition of one mt at Vijaynagar and 0.67 mt at Dolvi unit, and also expand our downstream projects by 2020," he said. The overall estimated capex plan of Rs 26,815 crore announced last year is expected to be enhanced by Rs 17,600 crore to implement new projects, Rao said, adding, "Overall, the company is now implementing a cumulative capex pipeline of Rs 44,415 crore by March 2020." With the company already spending about Rs 4,700 crore in FY18, it plans to spend the balance Rs 39,715 crore over the next three years, according to him. These projects are planned to be funded by a mix of debt of Rs 25,000 crore and internal accruals of around Rs 19,000 crore, Rao said. Meanwhile, the total income of the company increased by 16 per cent to Rs 20,862 crore in the March quarter, against Rs 17,973 crore in the same quarter last year. During financial year 2017-18, the company reported 76 per cent year-on-year rise in net profit at Rs 6,113 crore. Its net debt reduced by Rs 4,048 crore during the quarter and by Rs 3,529 crore during the year, despite higher activity levels, the company said in a statement. Rao pointed out that the domestic growth outlook is improving as structural reforms are expected to increase productivity and incentivise investments. The domestic steel demand grew at a healthy rate of 8 per cent in the March quarter, however, imports remained at elevated levels in FY18, indicating that the trade remedial measures in place are ineffective, he said. Rao expects the steel consumption in India to grow by 7-7.5 per cent in FY19 on the back of government push for infrastructure projects and strengthening consumer demand. The private steel giant hopes that the 17 per cent growth in the automobile industry, 14 per cent in the appliances industry and infrastructure and housing sector growth will create huge demand for domestic steel players. Commenting on the guidance, Rao said the company is looking at a 3 per cent jump in steel production at 16.75 mt and 2.5 per cent increase in sales at 16 mt in FY19. He said the company is awaiting NCLT approval for Monnet Ispat and Energy (MIEL) acquisition. JSW Steel and AION Investments Private II (AION) had submitted a bid for MIEL under the corporate insolvency resolution process of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code 2016. JSW Steel is a part of the diversified JSW Group, which has presence in steel, energy, infrastructure, cement and JSW Ventures....
56 Glenmark receives ANDA approval for generic version of Temovate Cream GLENMARK 11 May, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc., USA (Glenmark) has been granted final approval by the United States Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for Clobetasol Propionate Cream USP, 0.05%, the generic version of Temovate Cream, 0.05%, of Fougera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. According to IQVIA sales data for the 12 month period ending March 2018, the Temovate Cream, 0.05% market achieved annual sales of approximately $118.0 million. Glenmark’s current portfolio consists of 134 products authorized for distribution in the US marketplace and 61 ANDA’s pending approval with the USFDA. In addition to these internal filings, Glenmark continues to identify and explore external development partnerships to supplement and accelerate the growth of its existing pipeline and portfolio. ...
57 Fortis Board Backs Munjals And Burmans In Takeover Battle FORTIS 11 May, 2018 The board of Fortis Healthcare Ltd. said it will recommend the offer proposed by the Munjal and the Burman family offices for the healthcare chain’s hospital and diagnostics businesses. The recommendation of the board will be placed before the shareholders for approval, Fortis said in its filing to the stock exchanges. The board met on Thursday to consider all binding offers received by the company. Sunil Munjal’s Hero Enterprise Investment Office and the Burman Family Office, which jointly own a minority stake in Fortis, has committed to invest Rs 1,800 crore in the Indian healthcare chain. Of this, Rs 800 crore will be infused through a preferential issue at Rs 167 a share The rest will be invested through warrants at Rs 176 a share, with Rs 250 crore of that coming up front. Including the warrant subscription amount, their upfront investment would be Rs 1,050 crore without any due diligence. “This wasn’t the obvious first offer to our minds nor was it the best bid financially,” Amit Tandon, managing director of proxy advisory firm IiAS told BloombergQuint. The weighted average price of the offer from the Munjals and Burmans comes to Rs 171-172 per share. The price offered by IHH is Rs 175. While TPG has been offering a slightly lower price, it’s the most absolute binding offer and the most detailed offer in every sense. Amit Tandon, Managing Director At IiAS Tandon believes the board could have done a better and tighter bidding process for better price discovery. "It will be interesting to know how they [board] arrived at their decision." The takeover battle for Fortis started earlier this year when founders Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh lost shareholding control due to mounting debt and lenders invoking pledged shares. They then stepped down from the board amid allegations of siphoning funds. The fragmented shareholding of the company attracted five bidders in just over a month. In March, the Fortis board signed a binding agreement to spin off its hospital business and merge it with Manipal Health Enterprises Pvt Ltd. backed by private equity firm TPG. After that deal was announced, Fortis received another four non-binding bids from the Munjal-Burman combine (with a partially binding element), Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare, KKR-backed Radiant Life Healthcare and Fosun International. In response, the Fortis board said it would consider only binding bids, which prompted IHH Healthcare and Radiant Life to add binding elements to their offers. The Munjal and the Burman family offices, meanwhile, revised their offer into a fully binding one. The Munjal-Burman combine’s first offer for Fortis was made at Rs 1,250 crore which was subsequently revised higher to Rs 1,500 crore and finally to Rs 1,800 crore. The entity, in their final offer, also recommended divesting Fortis’ stake in SRL Diagnostics to fund the buyout of Religare Healthcare Trust Ltd’s assets. If the SRL stake sale does not happen, the offer proposed a rights issue for acquisition of RHT stake. Also Read: Who’s Offered What For Fortis Separately, the Fortis board today also approved the appointment of Sabina Vaisoha and Rohit Bhasin as independent directors for five years starting March 27 and April 19, respectively....
58 Zen Technologies incorporates wholly owned subsidiary company in US ZENTEC 10 May, 2018 Zen Technologies has successfully formed a wholly owned subsidiary company namely ‘Zen Technologies USA, Inc’, a Delaware Registered Company, on May 09, 2018. The company has incorporated subsidiary company for furtherance of its US business operations. Zen Technologies specializes in making simulators and imparting training since 1993. It has an innovative research and development division and is recognized as an in-house R&D unit by the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR). ...
59 Cipla enters into agreement with MannKind Corporation for Afrezza CIPLA 10 May, 2018 Cipla has entered into an exclusive marketing and distribution agreement with US-based MannKind Corporation for Afrezza in India. Afrezza is the only USFDA approved inhaled insulin available for patients suffering from diabetes. Under the agreement, Cipla will be responsible for obtaining regulatory approvals to distribute Afrezza in India, including approval from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI). Cipla will also be responsible for all marketing and sales activities of Afrezza in India. MannKind is responsible for supplying Afrezza to Cipla. Cipla is a global pharmaceutical company which uses cutting edge technology and innovation to meet the everyday needs of all patients. The company’s portfolio includes over 1500 products across wide range of therapeutic categories with one quality standard globally ...
60 Aurobindo Pharma’s arm recalls over 1.5 million injections from US market AUROPHARMA 10 May, 2018 Aurobindo Pharma’s US subsidiary - Auromedics Pharma LLC has initiated voluntary recall of over 1.5 million bags of different antibiotic and anti-seizure injections from the US market due to lack of assurance of sterility. The company started recalling nearly 0.4 million bags of Linezolid Injection 600 mg per 300 mL (2 mg/mL) for Intravenous Administration, 0.67 million bags of Levofloxacin in 5 % Dextrose Injection of different strengths and 0.52 million of Levetiracetam of different strengths. Aurobindo Pharma is engaged in manufacturing pharmaceutical products. It offers active pharmaceutical ingredients, intermediates and generic formulations like astemizole, domeperidone and omeprazole; anti-infective, oral and sterile antibiotics, pain management and osteoporosis segments. ...
61 Suven Life Sciences secures product patents in Australia, Eurasia, Europe SUVEN 09 May, 2018 Suven Life Sciences has secured one product patent from Australia, one product patent from Eurasia and one product patent from Europe corresponding to the New Chemical Entity (NCE) for the treatment of disorders associated with Neurodegenerative diseases and these Patents are valid through 2034. The granted claims of the patents include the class of selective 5-HT4 compound and is being developed as therapeutic agents for the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, Attention deficient hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Huntington’s disease, Narcolepsy, Parkinson and Schizophrenia respectively. Suven Life Science is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing novel pharmaceutical products, which are first in class or best in class CNS therapies using GPCR targets. ...
62 Tata Steel Europe explores potential sale of five non-core businesses TATASTEEL 09 May, 2018 Tata Steel Europe has identified five non-core businesses for potential sale. The sale process will cover five business units - Cogent, Kalzip, Firsteel, Tata Steel Istanbul Metals and Engineering Steels Service Centre (Wolverhampton). The company has recently conducted a detailed portfolio review of all its businesses to assess the strategic fit and the future potential. Based on the review, it has begun a process of seeking buyers for business units which supply products to niche markets. Following the potential sale of these business units, which employ a total of 1,100 people, Tata Steel Europe would continue to employ about 20,000 people manufacturing advanced products for the automotive, construction, engineering and packaging sectors. Tata Steel, the flagship company of the Tata group is the first integrated steel plant in Asia and is now the world’s second most geographically diversified steel producer and a Fortune 500 Company. ...
63 Bharti Infratel, Indus Towers May Invest Rs 3,500 Crore Capex Ahead Of Merger INFRATEL 08 May, 2018 Bharti Infratel Ltd. and Indus Towers are likely to invest Rs 3,500 crore in operations as capital expenditure for 2018-19 as they continue to operate on a ‘business-as-usual’ mode till their merger happens before the end of the financial year, sources said. The two companies, last month, announced a merger deal that will create a $14.6-billion firm with the world’s second-largest number of mobile masts. The merged entity will have, in its fold, more than 1,63,000 towers across India—the largest after China Tower. The transaction is subject to regulatory and other approvals which the two companies will now pursue, starting with the Competition Commission of India and thereafter the Securities and Exchange Board of India, National Company Law Tribunal and the Department of Telecom (FDI approval). The companies said the deal was expected to close before the end of 2018-19. A source privy to the development said the annual financial planning continues on course for both the companies as it is ‘business-as-usual’, and that Infratel’s capex is expected to be in the ballpark range of Rs 1,200 crore in 2018-19. Indus Towers—where Infratel holds a 42 percent stake—is likely to infuse Rs 2,300-2,500 crore as capex this year, said an official requesting anonymity. Indus Towers is jointly owned by Bharti Infratel (42 percent holding), Vodafone (42 percent), Idea Group (11.15 percent) and Providence (4.85 percent). The amount of investment is similar to last year’s levels and will go into “new towers, tenancies and replacement capital”, the official said, adding the investments are being funded from internal accruals of the two tower firms. A Bharti spokesperson declined to comment on a detailed e-mailed query sent to the company. Indus Towers did not wish to comment. “The capex amount will also be used for replacement of batteries, DG (diesel generators), power equipment...As the tenancies increase, the two companies will continue to increase their capacities of mobile towers ahead of their proposed merger,” said the source. Also Read: Bharti Infratel-Indus Tower Merger Explained Last month, the two entities announced that, “Indus Towers will be merged with and into Bharti Infratel through a scheme of arrangement.” The merged entity, which will be called Indus Towers, will remain listed. Bharti Airtel Ltd., which owns 53.5 percent in Bharti Infratel, will get a 33.8-37.2 percent stake in the combined entity. Its final shareholding depends on what Aditya Birla Group’s Idea and Providence do with their minority shareholding in Indus Towers. Vodafone India will get between 26.7 percent and 29.4 percent of the Indus-Bharti Infratel combine. The merger will help unlock value for the companies which are locked in a tariff war unleashed by newcomer Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. that has hurt earnings and triggered consolidation in the sector. Vodafone and Idea Cellular Ltd. are already in the final stages to merge their mobile operations. Last month, Airtel separately stated that it plans to engage with potential investors to evaluate a stake sale in the combined tower company, which will have an equity value of Rs 96,500 crore ($14.5 billion). Under the mega tower deal, Idea has the option to sell its 11.15 percent stake in Indus for cash at the merger ratio that values the stake at Rs 6,500 crore ($1 billion). Under the transaction, Infratel agreed to pay 1,565 of its own shares for each Indus Towers share. Vodafone India will receive 783.1 million shares in the combined company, valuing the U.K.-based firm’s stake at Rs 28,400 crore ($4.3 billion). If Idea decides to sell all its stake and Providence sells 3.35 percent of its 4.85 percent shareholding, the new entity will be 37.2 percent owned by Airtel and 29.4 percent by Vodafone Group, while 1.1 percent will be with Providence and the rest by public shareholders. In case Idea and Providence decide to continue to stay invested, Airtel would have a shareholding of 33.8 percent in the combined entity. Vodafone, in such a scenario, would have a 26.7 percent stake while Idea Group would get 7.1 percent and Providence would have a 3.1 percent holding. The remaining 29.3 percent would be with public....
64 Nestle Bets $7 Billion on Starbucks to Revive Coffee Sales NESTLEIND 08 May, 2018 For years, a smoldering George Clooney would sip his espresso and ask: “Nespresso...what else?” Turns out the answer is: Starbucks. In the third-biggest transaction in Nestle SA’s 152-year history, the Swiss food giant will spend $7.15 billion for the right to market Starbucks Corp. products from beans to capsules, marrying its international distribution network with the allure of arguably the biggest name in java. Nestle won’t get any physical assets in the deal. Instead, Chief Executive Officer Mark Schneider is harnessing the name recognition of Starbucks, with its 28,000 outlets around the globe and massive draw in the U.S. Nestle has struggled there for years with its own products like Nespresso and Dolce Gusto. Nestle could use a jolt -- sales rose at their weakest pace in more than two decades last year. By entering a marketing pact with Starbucks, the Swiss company is revealing the limits to growing with Nescafe and Nespresso. “Nestle needed a big brand, and they needed one fast,” said Alain Oberhuber, an analyst at MainFirst Bank in Zurich. “Starbucks is the only strong brand in roast-and-ground. It’s a rather defensive move -- a bit late -- but nevertheless, a strategically absolutely vital step.” Starbucks shares rose less than 1 percent in New York trading. The company said it will use the deal proceeds to accelerate stock buybacks. Nestle gained as much as 1.8 percent in Zurich. Its shares have dropped about 7 percent this year. Nestle’s Nespresso portioned-coffee business is one of its largest growth engines, but knockoff capsules -- including Starbucks-branded ones -- that are compatible with the machines have dented revenue. The new deal will give the Swiss company control of Starbucks capsules, among other products. It comes as Nestle’s Nescafe brand of instant coffees has lost market share in four of the past five years, according to Euromonitor. Starbucks is the second-most-valuable brand in fast food, according to BrandZ’s Global 2017 report, which estimates it’s worth $44 billion. Schneider agreed to pay 3.6 times sales for the consumer-products business, higher than the average of 3 times for major global food deals, according to Andrew Wood, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein. “This will be his first big M&A test,” Wood said. “Nestle’s acquisition track record over the last 10-15 years has been less than stellar.” Nestle is making a new offensive in the U.S. a decade after Nespresso renewed a push into that market, enjoying limited success as most coffee drinkers avoid small espressos. Nestle has been struggling to gain market share in that market, given the prevalence of Starbucks and Green Mountain, which was bought out by Europe’s billionaire Reimann family. Their JAB Holding Co. has spent more than $30 billion building a coffee empire by acquiring assets such as Peet’s and combining with Mondelez International Inc.’s coffee business. JAB is the biggest danger for Nestle, MainFirst’s Oberhuber said. The Nestle-Starbucks alliance comes just as JAB purchases Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc. for $18.7 billion, diversifying in soft drinks. Starbucks intends to remain in the K-Cup pod business with JAB’s Keurig and is in talks with the company, Chief Executive Officer Kevin Johnson said on a conference call with analysts. Nestle will take over about 500 Starbucks employees who will remain based in Seattle. Starbucks will continue to produce packaged coffee and other goods in North America, while Nestle will be in charge of the rest of the world. Sales will be booked by Nestle, which will pay royalties to the coffee chain. The agreement adds prospects for growth outside of North America, where Starbucks outlets are less prevalent. The Swiss company gets the rights to sell packaged coffee products in supermarkets, restaurants and catering operations under the flagship Starbucks brand and others including Seattle’s Best Coffee, Starbucks VIA and Torrefazione Italia. The deal includes the Teavana tea brand as well. Starbucks sees the deal contributing to profit by 2021 or sooner, and will use proceeds to accelerate share buybacks. The chain expects to return around $20 billion to shareholders through 2020 via buybacks and dividends, according to a statement. The alliance with Nestle will help Starbucks gain brand recognition abroad, executives said on the call. They also said Starbucks was in talks with a number of parties, but they picked Nestle after several months of contacts with Schneider. Slower Growth Now one of the world’s largest restaurant chains, Starbucks has transitioned from explosive growth of past years to a steadier pace of expansion. This has left some investors underwhelmed in recent quarters, with the shares rising less then 1 percent in 2018. Nestle is taking a page from JAB’s strategy, as it begins to build a patchwork quilt of different brands in coffee instead of focusing almost exclusively on Nescafe and Nespresso. Last year’s $425 million purchase of a stake in Blue Bottle Coffee was a step back into the roast-and-ground segment, whose growth prospects have revived as consumers become more sophisticated about coffee. Nestle also added niche brand Chameleon Cold-Brew last year to expand its portfolio in the U.S. That added complexity may make it harder to run the coffee business, and there’s a risk that the Starbucks food-service sales cannibalize those of Nescafe. “Being a big brand is not an automatic passport to future success,” said Peter Walshe, BrandZ global strategy director at Kantar Millward Brown in London. “We see that in the coffee category, with the rise of smaller brands. Brands that are perceived to be making people’s lives better, are innovative and deliver a great experience, are the most successful. Both Starbucks and Nestle do so very strongly.”...
65 RInfra alliance bags ?7,000-cr Mumbai sea-link project RELINFRA 08 May, 2018 Anil Ambani-led Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra) has received a letter of award from the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) for the 17.17-km Versova-Bandra Sea Link project in Mumbai, the company said in the statement. Reliance Infrastructure bagged the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract project in partnership with Italian construction major Astaldi S.p.A after bidding ?6,993.99 crore, lower than other bidders, but higher than MSRDC’s initial estimate of ?5,500 crore. Joint ventures of ITD Cementation-Hyundai Engineering and L&T Infrastructure-Samsung C&T were among the other bidders. The Versova-Bandra Sea Link, part of an ambitious coastal road project connecting south Mumbai to the western suburbs, is expected to be completed within five years. Metro project MSRDC is yet to get the environmental clearances for the project. Earlier this year, the consortium of Reliance Infrastructure and Astaldi won a ?1,584-crore order for construction of three packages of the Mumbai Metro Line 4 project. The new contract takes Reliance Infrastructure’s EPC order book – that includes orders for several road, metro and railway projects and thermal and nuclear power plants – to around ?27,500 crore. RInfra had last month reported a 291 per cent rise in its consolidated net profit for the fourth quarter of 2017-18. The company’s net profit increased to ?160 crore from ?41 crore for the same period a year ago....
66 Maruti Suzuki set to shake up the vehicle lubricant market MARUTI 08 May, 2018 Traditional vehicle lubricant makers are now facing competition from India’s largest car manufacturer and seller Maruti Suzuki, which has launched its own line of lubricants, ECSTAR. This is a game-changer. So far, sole lubricant manufacturers faced competition only from their co-branded counterparts (IndianOil makes lubricants for almost all major vehicle manufacturers). For example, Servo, IndianOil’s lubricants and greases brand, has manufacturer approvals for its specific products from two-wheeler companies such as Kinetic, LML and TVS, and four-wheeler majors such as Hyundai and Hindustan Motors. These products, endorsed by vehicle companies, are touted as favourable products at authorised service stations. Till now, even Maruti endorsed the Servo Maruti Genuine Oil specifically for its entire range of petrol vehicles. But with ECSTAR, things might change, as the vehicle manufacturer has decided to procure the products directly from local suppliers. Under Suzuki brand “Maruti Suzuki would be giving the specifications and suppliers will offer the product. The lubricants are then packaged and branded under the Suzuki ECSTAR brand,” an industry watcher said. In its sales pitch, the ECSTAR is supposed to “give you a Suzuki experience that others could not.” Surfing on the premium claim, the ECSTAR products are also priced higher than their competitors. Lubricant prices vary depending on the quality and requirements, ranging from ?300 to ?3,500 a litre. “Maruti has about 48 per cent market share in passenger vehicles in India, and hence the largest share in the total number of cars serviced at authorised service stations. If they start using their own lubricants, it will negatively impact other lubricant manufacturers like Castrol,” said Rajat Sharma, Founder at Sana Securities and SEBI Registered Investment Advisor. “Maruti derives up to 20 per cent of its net profit from service income. Engine oil and coolants constitute a major portion of overall service cost, so naturally this will have a positive impact on Maruti’s margins,” he added. While announcing the product, Maruti Suzuki said that initially the company will offer ECSTAR to its customers at the newly launched NEXA Service workshops and then across its full service network of over 3,000 workshops across the country....
67 NMDC reports 2.41 MT production of iron ore up to April 2018 NMDC 07 May, 2018 NMDC has reported 2.41 million tonnes (MT) of iron ore production and logged sales volume of 2.22 MT up to the month of April 2018. The company’s Chhattisgarh mines produced 1.57 MT of iron ore and registered sales volume of 1.91 MT, while Karnataka mines produced 0.84 MT of iron ore and sold 0.31 MT of iron ore up to April 2018. NMDC is a state-controlled mineral producer of the Government of India. It is fully owned by the Government of India and is under administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. ...
68 JK Paper planning to raise funds up to Rs 500 crore JKPAPER 07 May, 2018 JK Paper is planning to raise funds by way of issue of Non-convertible Debentures up to Rs 500 crore. The meeting of the Board of Directors of the company will be held on May 14, 2018, to consider the same. JK Paper is engaged in paper manufacturing business. The company is India’s largest producer of branded papers is a leading player in the printing and writing segment. ...
69 Essar Steel Lenders To Consider Allowing ArcelorMittal, Numetal To Repay Overdue Loans: Exclusive ESTL 07 May, 2018 The committee of creditors to Essar Steel Ltd. will meet on Monday to discuss a proposal to allow Numetal Mauritius and ArcelorMittal India to repay any overdue loans to their respective lenders and become eligible to bid for the insolvent steel company, according to three people in the know. The committee of creditors will take a final decision based on a vote, said the people quoted above. The voting, which will extend over 24 hours starting Monday morning, will seek the consent of at least 75 percent of the lenders by value to allow both bidders to participate. If majority lenders approve the proposal, lenders will give both Numetal and ArcelorMittal a certain number of days to clear any pending dues they may have with their respective lenders. The bidders may choose to comply or challenge the CoC’s decision in court. In ArcelorMittal’s case, the National Company Law Tribunal had found that the company was liable—as a promoter of KSS Petron and Uttam Galva Steels Ltd.—to repay dues to the lenders of both companies. In Numetal’s case, Essar Group co-founder Ravi Ruia, had issued guarantees to banks in exchange for loans availed by other group companies, which needs to be cleared, for it to become eligible, two of the three people quoted above have confirmed. Ruia's son has was a beneficiary of a trust which held 25 percent equity in Numetal Mauritius when the first bid was submitted. The bidders will have to get ‘no dues’ certificates from all of their respective lenders and submit in writing that they do not have any pending liabilities to be considered as eligible bidders for Essar Steel. An ‘overdue’ in the context of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code is any amount that was due to lenders on a certain date before the bids were submitted and penal interest, if any. During these meetings, Numetal had offered in writing that they were willing to sever any ties to the Ruia family. The other shareholders including VTB Bank could buy out the equity held by Aurora Trust, where Revant Ruia has been a beneficiary. The committee of creditors was itself forced to consider this option after the Ahmedabad-bench of the NCLT directed it to do so. The NCLT in its order last month noted that under Section 30(4) of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, any bidder deemed ineligible due to non-repayment of loans must be given a chance to repay their dues and become eligible. The order was passed after both bidders challenged the committee's decision of deeming them ineligible to bid for Essar Steel in March. Lenders followed the resolution professional's recommendations in the matter, where both bidders were found to be in violation of Section 29(A) of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code on many counts, including being promoters of companies that were tagged as non-performing assets for over 12 months, having pending regulatory orders and criminal proceedings. The lenders themselves did not open the bids submitted by Numetal and ArcelorMittal to determine eligibility, which the NCLT noted as a problem. After the NCLT passed its order, the creditors opened both bids and found that ArcelorMittal’s bid was higher than that of Numetal. The India arm of the Luxembourg-based steel company had proposed 30-35 percent haircut for the financial creditors of Essar Steel, as compared with a 60-65 percent haircut proposed by Numetal, BloombergQuint reported earlier. It is not clear as to whether Numetal will be allowed to revise its offer after it clears all pending dues to be eligible to bid. Meanwhile, both Numetal and ArcelorMittal have independently approached the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal to challenge the orders passed at the NCLT and question the other bidder's eligibility in the case. Both pleas will be heard on May 17. The decisions taken by the lenders and the directions passed by them will be subject to the NCLAT order in the matter....
70 Maruti Suzuki in collaboration with Bihar government inaugurates IDTR MARUTI 04 May, 2018 Maruti Suzuki India (MSIL) in collaboration with Bihar government has inaugurated the state’s first Institute of Driving Training and Traffic Research (IDTR). The IDTR has been set up under Public Private Partnership mode, between the Government of Bihar and MSIL, and with guidance and support from Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. The Government has provided the land and building, while MSIL will manage and run the facility. The IDTR will set standards for quality driving training and also impart driving training, theoretical and practical, to aspiring and existing drivers. The institute will focus on the ‘Train-the-Trainer’ model, to have a multiplier effect and upgrade the driving skills of a larger number of people. Maruti Suzuki India (formerly known as Maruti Udyog) is an automobile manufacturer in India. It provides passenger cars, utility vehicles and vans. The firm also offers pre-owned car sales, fleet management and car financing services. ...
71 RIL’s telecom arm launches world’s first AI based brand engagement platform RELIANCE 04 May, 2018 Reliance Industries’ (RIL) telecom arm - Reliance Jio Infocomm (Jio) has launched the world’s first Artificial Intelligence (AI) based brand engagement platform - JioInteract. This unique and innovative service uses a powerful artificial intelligence based platform to listen to user questions and respond to them in the most appropriate way. The first of many services to be launched on this platform is the Live Video Call that features India’s favourite celebrities. To kick-start, Jio has on-boarded none other than Bollywood’s biggest star, Amitabh Bachchan, who will promote his upcoming comedy-drama film ‘102 Not Out’ in the most innovative way. RIL is India’s largest private sector company. The company’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
72 PNB Housing Finance to raise up to $1 billion through ECB PNB 04 May, 2018 PNB Housing Finance has received an approval to raise up to $1 billion (about Rs 6,500 crore) through external Commercial Borrowing (ECB) in order to fund business expansion. The board of directors at its meeting held on May 3, 2018 has approved to raise the funds in one or more trenches to augment its medium-term resources subject to all regulatory approvals. PNB Housing Finance is a registered housing finance company with National Housing Bank (NHB). They provide housing loans to individuals and corporate bodies for construction, purchase, repair and up-gradation of houses. ...
73 Tata Motors gets nod to sell defense business to TASL TATAMOTORS 04 May, 2018 Tata Motors has got approval for the sale of its defense business to Tata Sons’ -- wholly-owned subsidiary Tata Advanced Systems (TASL), by way of a Scheme of Arrangement to be entered between the company, TASL and their respective members and/or creditors. Tata Motors will receive an upfront consideration of Rs 100 crore, adjusted for capex incurred and changes in working capital in the intervening period until closure date, and a deferred consideration of 3% of the revenue generated from identified Specialized Defence Projects for upto 15 years from FY20 subject to a maximum of Rs 1750 crore. The company has also got approval for the sale of its shareholding in TAL Manufacturing Solutions (TAL), a wholly-owned subsidiary, to TASL at an enterprise value of Rs 625 crore. The Board of Directors of the Company at their meeting held on May 3, 2018, have approved the same. Tata Motors is India’s largest automobile company. Through subsidiaries and associate companies, Tata Motors has operations in the UK, South Korea, Thailand, South Africa and Indonesia. Among them is Jaguar Land Rover, the business comprising the two iconic British brands. ...
74 Why India’s Packaged Food Market Will Jump To $200 Billion In A Decade OTHER 03 May, 2018 More working women and smaller families will drive consumption of packaged food in India. Particularly when hiring a household help is becoming costlier. Credit Suisse calls these structural drivers for the long term. The immediate push is coming from improving cold storage due to better power supply, affordability and investments. As a result, the Zurich-based investment bank said, the market is expected to grow fivefold to $200 billion over the next decade. The most profitable opportunities lie in baby food, chocolates, biscuits, baked products and juices, according to Credit Suisse. It also highlighted the increased focus on healthier snacks, and beverages — largely driven by consumption amid rising temperatures. Taking a cue, fast-moving consumer goods companies like ITC Ltd., Nestlé India Ltd. and Britannia Industries Ltd. are increasingly catering to the changing consumer habits, introducing eco-friendly, healthy products at cheaper rates. Britannia, the maker of Good Day biscuits, launched new products and expanded reach in the past five to 10 years. Nestlé India, after a change in management following the Maggi safety issue, too unveiled new products. ITC also has a sizeable foods business, having invested strongly in growing branded packaged wheat flour, cream biscuits and salted snacks. While the scope for growth is high, lower shelf life, need for controlled ambient temperature in the supply chain, greater price sensitivity and taste are some of the challenges for the packaged food industry. Credit Suisse identified three key catalysts that could translate into sustained growth. Availability: Better power supply has improved refrigeration at retail stores. Also, modern retail outlets can now be found in smaller cities and towns. Affordability: Lower goods and services tax rates, lesser wastage in the packaging cycle and larger manufacturing efficiencies keep costs under check. Prices have increased at a lower rate than inflation. Credit Suisse sees a strong potential for both Nestlé India and Britannia. Nestlé has a better category mix and a diversified product portfolio, while Britannia is the market leader in biscuits, the investment bank said. Britannia can grow further by expanding its market share and diversifying its product range. It also identified smaller players like Prataap Snacks Ltd. and Manpasand Beverages Ltd. as high-growth companies with a relatively low margin. For ITC, packaged food is still a small contributor to its earnings. While Patanjali is another large player in packaged foods, Credit Suisse said it has seen a limited traction in biscuits, chocolates and juices. The company, it said, will derive growth from consumer transition to branded products. Credit Suisse’s Top Picks Nestlé: Maintained ‘Outperform’ with a price target of Rs 10,500 — an upside potential of 12 percent. Britannia: Maintained ‘Outperform’ with a target of Rs 5,850, implying an upside of 6 percent. GSK Consumer: Maintained ‘Outperform’ with a price target of Rs 7,100 — an upside of 16 percent....
75 Sun Pharma’s arm enters into anti-fungal powder OTC category with ABZORB SUNPHARMA 30 Apr, 2018 Sun Pharma Consumer Healthcare (CHC), a division of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries has entered into the anti-fungal powder OTC category with ABZORB. The brand will be co-promoted across prescription & OTC channels in India to drive growth. Sun Pharma CHC has launched a 360 degree marketing campaign comprising TV, print & digital to expand consumer outreach. ABZORB’s unique combination of talc & starch ensures superior sweat absorption and clotrimazole, one of the best-in-class anti-fungal, helps treat infection & prevents its recurrence. The new packaging design, with an angular dispensing nozzle, enhances consumer experience through targeted application. The new pack makes it easier to apply the product on difficult to reach areas thereby reducing wastage. The product is available in 100 g & 50 g packaging. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
76 L&T synchronises MP Power Plant Unit in record time LT 30 Apr, 2018 Larsen & Toubro (L&T) has successfully synchronised on April 27, 2018, the Unit-3 of the state-of-the-art 2x660 MW Shree Singaji Thermal Power Plant in Madhya Pradesh in record time of 40 months for indigenously built power plants in India. This supercritical power plant is being put up by MP Power Generating Company at Khandwa district in the state. L&T’s scope of work includes design, engineering, supply, installation and commissioning of Units 3 & 4 (Stage-II) of the coal-fired power plant on a turnkey basis. The EPC contract was awarded to L&T on December 31, 2014. L&T has executed several large coal-based power projects on EPC basis for government utilities and independent power producers in India. It is currently executing another coal-based power project in Madhya Pradesh – 2x660 MW ultra-supercritical power plant at Khargone for NTPC. L&T is an Indian multinational engaged in technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services with over $17 billion in revenue. ...
77 Tata Motors’ New Range Of Commercial Vehicles To Drive Turnaround Strategy TATAMOTORS 26 Apr, 2018 Tata Motors Ltd., is betting on a new ‘Ultra’ range of trucks to increase market share in the commercial vehicles segment. As part of the its five-year strategy, the automaker is looking to expand its portfolio in the intermediate and light commercial vehicle as well the medium commercial vehicles segments, Girish Wagh, president of the commercial vehicles business at Tata Motors told BloombergQuint. The launch of the Ultra range of trucks, ranging from 7-16 tonne capacity, will help to strengthen its position in the ILCV segment, he added. Tata Motors’ market share in the segment rose 2.7 percent to 44.2 percent for the year-ended March. For the commercial vehicles segment overall, its market share increased by 70 basis points to 44 percent as it undertook heavy discounting to increase volume growth. Last August, while addressing shareholders, Tata Motors Chairman N Chandrasekaran expressed concern over the company's falling commercial vehicles market share from a high of nearly 60 percent five years ago and emphasised on the turnaround plan for its domestic business with a special focus on the ailing commercial vehicles business. The company has been investing Rs 1,500 crore every year, Wagh said, adding that this investment is expected to grow marginally as they look to meet the Bharat Stage Vi emission norms. Tata Motors is eyeing demand from the e-commerce logistics segment and smart cities even as it contends with higher commodity prices. “We are seeing some of the headwind in steel and tyres, we have been able to pass on some of these to the customers. But in competitive environment, we have to absorb some of the costs, said Wagh. Higher fuel prices is also a red flag for the CV maker. “Of late, we have seen customers talk about rising diesel prices, these could have some impact,” Wagh added. Tata Motors chief Guenter Butschek is confident the company will outpace industry growth in the financial year 2018-19 but did not set a target....
78 JSW Steel Plans To Double Capacity In About Five Years JSWSTEEL 26 Apr, 2018 India’s largest steel manufacturer is confident of retaining size leadership even if none of its current acquisition plans succeed. Expansion of current manufacturing facilities and the plan to build a new plant in Odisha will take JSW Steel Ltd. to 40 million tonnes per annum from the current 18 mtpa over the next five years or so, said Seshagiri Rao, joint managing director and group CFO of the company. Rao is upbeat about the growth prospects for India’s steel industry after demand rose over 7 percent in the last quarter. “It’s a momentum we are seeing after a period of almost 10 years, after the global financial crisis. So we expect at least for sometime this momentum will continue,” he said in an interview with BloombergQuint. An additional 5 mtpa capacity at JSW’s factory in Dolvi will be ready by March 2020. The company also intends to add 4 mtpa to the 12 mtpa facility at Vijayanagar facility in 24 to 30 months, said Rao Another 1 mtpa will be added when the National Company Law Tribunal approves JSW Steel’s resolution plan for Monnet Ispat Ltd., a steel company currently undergoing insolvency resolution. JSW was the sole bidder for the business. The company is also working on a new 12 mtpa plant in Odisha. “We have done a lot of preliminary work there, getting approvals and all that. So that may take some time, because it's a greenfield project,” Rao added. In the meantime, if we succeed in any of the IBC cases, I think it [capacity] can accelerate further or go beyond 40 mtpa. This is how we are looking at our growth story. Seshagiri Rao, Joint MD and Group CFO, JSW Steel So far the Sajjan Jindal-founded company has succeeded in acquiring just one of the three insolvent steel businesses it bid for - Monnet Ispat. JSW was outbid by Tata Steel for Bhushan Steel Ltd. and Bhushan Steel & Power Ltd. Both debt burdened companies are currently in the final stages of insolvency resolution. It’s now trying its luck with the 10 mtpa Essar Steel Ltd., also a company undergoing insolvency resolution. When the five assets were available, we prioritised three assets and we focused on the three. All the five assets came together at the same time, bunched together. We could not spend our time on all the assets, so we focused on three. So after having secured only one, there was an opportunity which again opened for Essar Steel, because both the applicants were declared as ineligible as resolution applicants. So we also saw an opportunity for rebidding. Competitors Tata Steel and Steel Authority of India also have aggressive expansion plans lined up. SAIL expects to expand capacity to 21 mtpa from the current 12 mtpa in two to three years, its Chairman PK Singh said to BloombergQuint earlier this month. If it succeeds in acquiring the Bhushan Steel (5.6 mtpa) and Bhushan Power & Steel (2.5 mtpa), Tata Steel could overtake JSW before the year is out, with a total 21.1 mtpa capacity. Last year it also announced a further 5 mtpa capacity expansion at its Kalinganagar facility, to be ready in 4 years. That puts Tata Steel’s estimated capacity at 26 mtpa by say, 2022. Just 2 short of JSW’s targeted total capacity in that time period. India’s total steel production capacity is 128 mtpa, as per government data. In two years it is expected to become the world’s second-largest steel producer, according to a Goldman Sachs report. And by financial year 2030, the total capacity is estimated to hit 300 mtpa, as set out in the government’s National Steel Policy of 2017. The performance of the steel sector has been ahead of government’s target in the past with nameplate capacity as of FY17 at 125 mtpa versus government target of 110 mtpa by FY20 as per the National Steel Policy, 2005. However, we believe, the current capacity addition target of the government, if achieved, will be largely in the latter half of the next decade. - Goldman Sachs Research Report Capacity utilisation is also expected to improve, from 76 percent in the last fiscal to 87 percent by FY23, Goldman Sachs estimated. Shopping Overseas At a time when Tata Steel is working to save its Europe business via a merger with Thyssenkrupp AG, JSW is looking for acquisition opportunities overseas. Today the U.S. and Europe are completely different than what it was in the past. They are in the growth momentum. For the last 10 years, they were not doing well. Today the commodities cycle has come back again. It is looking better. Industrial commodities are particularly looking better. And in this current environment, I think even looking at acquisitions globally is not a bad idea. Seshagiri Rao, Joint MD & Group CFO, JSW Steel Last year, JSW lost to ArcelorMittal in the competition for Italy’s troubled Ilva steel plant with an annual production of over 10 mtpa. Now it is rumoured to be interested in acquiring a much smaller Italian steelmaker, Aferpi....
79 Mahindra Finance to raise funds up to Rs 40,000 crore M&MFIN 26 Apr, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra Financial Services (Mahindra Finance) has received an approval for issue of Secured and/ or Unsecured Redeemable Non-Convertible Debentures including Subordinated Debentures on a private placement basis, for an aggregate amount not exceeding Rs 40,000 crore, within the overall borrowing limits of the company. The Board of Directors of the company at its meeting held on April 25, 2018, approved the same. Mahindra & Mahindra Financial Services one of India’s leading non-banking finance companies. ...
80 Reliance Jio Adds Highest Monthly Subscribers In A Year RELIANCE 25 Apr, 2018 Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. added the highest monthly users in a year as it continues to gain subscribers at the expense of smaller telecom operators. Reliance Jio added close to 87 lakh subscribers in February, the highest since February 2017, according to the latest data released by the telecom regulator. It now has 17.7 crore users or 15.3 percent share of the market. The user addition could have been partly fuelled by lower tariffs and JioPhone. The carrier cut pricing twice in January. About 86 percent of Reliance Jio’s subscribers are active on the network, lower than its larger peers. The number of active users, however, has been increasing consistently. Reliance Jio’s larger rivals Bharti Airtel Ltd., Vodafone India Ltd. and Idea Cellular Ltd. together added close to 1.2 crore subscribers. Vodafone added the most users in 18 months and Idea Cellular the highest in 16 months. Overall, all carriers together added a net of 49 lakh users in February. Among the smaller operators, barring state-owned BSNL, all lost subscribers in February. Reliance Communications Ltd., Tata Teleservices Ltd., Aircel, MTNL and Telenor’s customer base fell by more than 1.65 crore during the month. Tata Teleservices and Telenor have completely stopped providing services, while Aircel has reportedly halted services in six of its circles and filed for insolvency. Anil Ambani owned RCom sold its assets and has decided to operate as a virtual network operator. The pressure on customer addition and SIM consolidation is expected to continue as carrier on the verge of exiting consumer wireless services still have close to 13.2 percent of India’s user base. Reliance Jio’s customer market share increased the most by 69 basis points, while that of other operators rose 20 to 31 basis points. Since Reliance Jio’s launch, only Vodafone India has lost its share, while Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular have managed to hold their ground....
81 Bharti Airtel Approves Proposal To Merge Indus Towers With Bharti Infratel BHARTIARTL 25 Apr, 2018 Bharti Airtel Ltd. approved the merger of Indus Towers Ltd. with Bharti Infratel Ltd. in a deal that will create the largest tower company, outside of China. Merger ratio for the deal will be 1,565 shares of Bharti Infratel for every one Indus Towers share, Bharti Airtel said in an exchange filing. The deal values Indus Towers at an enterprise value of $10.8 billion. Combined entity will control more than one-third of the tower industry in India. It will have a market share of close to 35 percent. The tenancy ratio – the number of tenants, or operators who have put up their antennae on the towers – for the merged entity will be close to 2.25 times, ahead of the industry average of nearly 2 times. The merger will also help the company save close to Rs 560 crore on account of dividend distribution of tax and other corporate expenditures. Economies of scale could also bring down the combined entity’s capital expenditure, Bharti Infratel's management said in a conference call yesterday. Key highlights of the deal: Bharti-Indus deal values Vodafone’s shareholding at $4.3 billion. Vodafone to get 783.1 million new shares in combined Bharti-Indus entity. To consider stake sale in Indus post merger To engage potential investors for Indus stake Idea has option to sell Indus stake or get new shares Exit Opportunity Bharti Infratel currently owns 42 percent of Indus Towers while Vodafone owns 42 percent, Idea Cellular group owns 11.15 percent and U.S.-based private equity firm Providence owns 4.85 percent. The three telecom service providers – Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India Ltd. and Idea Cellular Ltd., were looking to cut their stake in tower business to fund their core operations. Bharti Airtel has so far sold 18.5 percent stake in its tower arm Bharti Infratel in different tranches for close to Rs 12,000 crore. Earlier this year, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular sold their own tower assets to ATC India for close to Rs 7,850 crore. The merger of Infratel and Indus Towers will provide Idea Cellular an exit and will give Vodafone Group a chance to exit in future date by selling its shares in open market. Key highlights on the ownership of merged entity: Idea group has the option to sell its 11.15 percent in Indus Towers. The proceeds will be for the benefit of the entity resulting from the merger of the Vodafone India and Idea Group. It also has the option to get 7.1 percent stake in the new Bharti entity. Providence will receive new shares equivalent to 1.1 percent in the combined entity between Bharti Infratel and Indus Towers. The remaining 3.35 percent will can either be sold to Bharti Infratel for cash or be converted into shares in the new entity. Vodafone will get 783.1 million shares in the net entity in exchange for its 42 percent stake in Indus Towers. This is on the basis that the other parties sell their prior holdings in Indus Towers. Bharti Airtel’s shareholding will be diluted from 53.5 percent in Bharti Infratel currently to 37.2 percent in the combined company. Consolidation Continues India's telecom industry is going through perhaps its final leg of consolidation led by Vodafone-Idea merger deal and Reliance Communications' asset sale to Jio. The tower business is struggling in many ways despite the fact that India needs an estimated two lakh towers, Mahesh Uppal, telecom analyst at Com First India told BloombergQuint. "This deal will benefit the telecom industry as a whole." Nitin Soni, Director for Asian Corporates at Fitch Ratings agrees. There is a lot of growth still to happen, he said. "We know that there are frequent call drops and data traffic is growing really well. We need to continue to add more towers in the industry to address this significant growth in data traffic."...
82 Hero MotoCorp hikes prices of its products HEROMOTOCO 25 Apr, 2018 Hero MotoCorp has made an upward revision in the ex-showroom prices of its motorcycles and scooters, with immediate effect. The upward revision in the prices has been done to partially off-set the consistently rising input costs, including the prices of commodities. The increase in the prices of the two-wheelers is up to Rs 625. The exact quantum of the increase will vary, basis the model and the specific market. Hero MotoCorp is an India-based holding company and a two-wheeler manufacturer. The company is engaged in the manufacturing and selling of motorized two-wheelers, spare parts and related services. ...
83 Suven Life hammered with 7 Observations at Medak from USFDA SUVEN 25 Apr, 2018 Hyderabad based Suven Life Sciences has been hammered with seven form 483 observations by USFDA at its Medak facility, as per media reports. This facility based at Pashamylaram, in Medak district, is an integrated facility with capability to manufacture active pharmaceutical ingredients (bulk drugs), intermediates and formulations. In April 2016, this facility had undergone a USFDA inspection and had received EIR in July 2016. The current inspection is likely to be a routine inspection. Suven operates a contract research and manufacturing services (CRAMS) model for new chemical entities and has several clients and molecules in its pipeline. The observations at Medak/Pashamylaram would be negative for the company....
84 SAIL inks pact with Airports Authority of India SAIL 24 Apr, 2018 Steel Authority of India (SAIL) has inked a pact with the Airports Authority of India (AAI) for utilization of airstrips at its three facilities -- Rourkela, Bokaro and Burnpur -- under the Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) - UDAN. SAIL is India’s largest steel producing company. The company is among the five Maharatnas of the country’s Central Public Sector Enterprises. The company has five integrated steel plants, three special plants, and one subsidiary in different parts of the country. ...
85 Jet Airways to start flight services from May under codeshare partnership with AeroMexico JETAIRWAYS 24 Apr, 2018 Jet Airways will commence flight services between India and Mexico from next month under a codeshare partnership with AeroMexico. The Codesharing allows an airline to book its passengers on its partner carriers and provide seamless travel to destinations where it has no presence. The codeshare flights, which will be effective from May 1, 2018, will be operated between Delhi and Mumbai in India and Mexico City through London’s Heathrow Airport. Jet Airways is India’s premier international airline, which operates flights to India and overseas. The company’s robust domestic India network spans the length and breadth of the country covering metro cities, state capitals and emerging destinations. ...
86 Berger Paints to invest ?200 cr in UP BERGEPAINT 24 Apr, 2018 The ?4,600-crore turnover Berger Paints India, will invest ?200 crore to set up an integrated plant at Sandila in Uttar Pradesh. The plant is expected to be operational by FY20. According to a notification to the bourses, the proposed plant will be an integrated one. It will manufacture the whole range of water and solvent-based decorative, industrial and protective coatings, resin, putty, emulsion and construction chemical paints. The company’s Managing Director and CEO Abhijit Roy was not available for comments. However, post the company’s 93rd Annual General Meeting in August, Roy had spoken of a capex of ?200 crore for FY18 to be used for brownfield expansion....
87 Bharti Airtel to start selling Apple Watch Series 3 BHARTIARTL 24 Apr, 2018 Bharti Airtel will begin selling Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular), which adds built-in cellular to the world's number one watch, with pre-registrations starting May 4, 2018 and availability on May 11, 2018. Customers can pre-register on Airtel website. With cellular, customers can go with just their Apple Watch and stay connected to the people and information they care about. To help Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) customers get started, Airtel will also offer a special introductory cellular trial. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
88 HDFC Bank to raise Rs 50,000 crore in next 12 months via private placement HDFCBANK 23 Apr, 2018 HDFC Bank has received an approval for the issue of Perpetual Debt Instruments (part of Additional Tier I capital), Tier II Capital Bonds and Long Term Bonds (financing of infrastructure and affordable housing) up to a total amount of Rs 50,000 crore in the period of next twelve months through private placement mode. The Board of Directors of the bank at their meeting held on April 21, 2018, approved the same. HDFC Bank is one of India’s premier banks providing a wide range of financial products and services using multiple distribution channels including a pan-India network of branches, ATMs, phone banking, net banking and mobile banking. ...
89 Bank Union Head Says Cash Crunch Still A Problem OTHER 23 Apr, 2018 Over the past few days, citizens in a few of India’s states have had a sense of deja vu. They’ve walked up to automated teller machines or bank branches and realised that they can’t withdraw their money. The last time they felt this was when the government announced in November 2016 that it was withdrawing 86 percent of the currency in circulation. The experience of not being able to access their own money, not a pleasant one to be sure, has caused irate customers to create a ruckus at several bank branches across the affected states, according to CH Venkatachalam, general secretary of the All India Bank Employee Association. Faced by criticism, particularly from the opposition, the government has said it is working to resolve the shortage of cash quickly. The Reserve Bank of India has said the shortage “in some pockets” is mainly because of certain logistical issues faced during the replenishing of ATMs. There is also a suggestion that the low velocity of the Rs 2,000 note has caused some of the shortage. Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Garg said there is a trend of high-value notes being hoarded as Rs 2,000 notes are being circulated but are not returning to the system. “We have not got this investigated, but you can assume this is the one note which is most suitable to hoard as this is a high value note.” Economists have hazarded various theories as to why the shortage occurred. According to Abhishek Upadhyay, economist and fixed income strategist at ICICI Securities Primary Dealership, the requirement of cash during remonetisation might have been underestimated. If one were to chart the requirement for cash based on growth in cash in circulation from before demonetisation, the number would amount to around Rs 21-22 lakh crore, he said. In the beginning of April, this number stood at Rs 18.4 lakh crore. Venkatachalam also contends that the recalibration of ATMs has not been completed in several locations, so as to allow the use of the new Rs 200 notes. He adds, based on inputs from members of his union, which numbers over 5 lakh, that the shortage of cash is far from resolved....
90 Motherson Sumi could go in for 3 acquisitions to achieve its FY2020 vision MOTHERSUMI 23 Apr, 2018 Global automobile component maker Motherson Sumi Systems Limited (MSSL) could go in for three acquisitions over the next 6 months in order to fast-track its FY2020 vision, as per media reports. The company has not yet officially reported anything in this regard. According to the media reports, of the three acquisitions, one could be of a European company in the range of $500mn, the second could be a Japanese company in the $50-$80mn range and the third could be a US company in the $200-$250mn range. These acquisitions are expected to be in addition to the recent acquisition of Reydel, which manufactures Instrument Panels, Door Panels, Console Modules, Decorative Parts and Cockpit Modules. PKC acquisition would enhance its revenue by Rs6,000cr in wiring segment. EBITDA margin is likely to expand by 203bps over FY18-20E to 11.4%, led by declining start-up costs and PKC turnaround. SMR continues to gain volume market share in exterior mirrors; value growth would be aided by premiumization. Vehicle upgradation and BS-VI norms are likely to increase the company’s wiring harness content per car supplied. The recent acquisition of interior component maker Reydel will provide geographical and client diversification. We project revenue, EBITDA and PAT CAGR of 16%, 28% and 37% respectively over FY18-20E. MSSL supplies to 14 out of top 15 global OEMs and derives consolidated revenues from wiring harness business (12%), SMR (21%), SMP (47%), PKC (14%) and others (6%), as per Q3FY18 numbers. It saw an erosion of 161bps yoy in consolidated EBITDA margins in Q3FY18 due to lag in pass-through of copper prices, high start-up costs at SMP and supplier issues in European business of PKC. However, these are near-term issues and the long-term trajectory remains extremely strong. Motherson Sumi Systems Ltd ended at Rs351 up by Rs0.9 or 0.26% from its previous closing of Rs350.10 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs351 and touched a high and low of Rs351 and Rs351 respectively. A total of 3,533 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs73,706.19cr. ...
91 Jet Airways reports passenger load factor of 86.2% in March JETAIRWAYS 19 Apr, 2018 Jet Airways has reported the Passenger Load Factor (PLF) of 86.2% during the month of March 2018. The company had reported the Passenger Load Factor of 90.4% during the month of February 2018. The PLF is a key indicator of the company’s performance, as it measures the average percentage of seats filled on airline’s aircraft fleet. Jet Airways is India’s premier international airline, which operates flights to India and overseas. The company’s robust domestic India network spans the length and breadth of the country covering metro cities, state capitals and emerging destinations. ...
92 NMDC fixes prices of iron ore NMDC 19 Apr, 2018 NMDC has fixed the prices of iron ore with effect from April 18, 2018. The prices of Lump Ore have been fixed at Rs 2,900 per ton, while the prices of Fines have been fixed at Rs 2,560 per ton. The above FOR prices are excluding Royalty, DMF, NMET, Cess, Forest Permit Fee and other taxes. NMDC is a state-controlled mineral producer of the Government of India. It is fully owned by the Government of India and is under administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. ...
93 Sun Pharma’s arm hikes stake in Ranbaxy Malaysia SUNPHARMA 19 Apr, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries’ one of the wholly owned subsidiaries has increased its shareholding in Ranbaxy Malaysia, Malaysia, by way of further purchase of 394,404 shares of face value of MYR 1.00 each (equivalent to 4.93%) of Ranbaxy Malaysia. Ranbaxy Malaysia is a subsidiary of the company, and the total shareholding of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, along with its wholly owned subsidiary is 90.74%, prior to this purchase of shares. Post completion of this purchase of shares, the total holding of the company along with its wholly owned subsidiary will increase from 90.74% to 95.67% in Ranbaxy Malaysia. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
94 Ashok Leyland plans ?1,000-cr capex for FY19 ASHOKLEY 19 Apr, 2018 Ashok Leyland plans a capex of ?1,000 crore and expansion of product range this fiscal as the country’s second largest medium and heavy commercial vehicle (M&HCV) company gears up for the upcoming growth curve. The company ended 2017-18 with its highest-ever medium and heavy duty truck volume of more than a lakh units and maintained its market share at 33 per cent despite intense competition. The Hinduja flagship expects the growth momentum in the M&HCV (goods) segment to continue till 2020 due to favourable growth drivers. “I think the market is very bullish and the next couple of years look strong. This year outlook is bright due to infrastructure push and year after that will be BS VI pre-buy period. And year after that, normally you expect the demand to moderate. But that is the year scrappage policy will kick in. So, the overall demand outlook is favourable,” Vinod Dasari, Managing Director, Ashok Leyland, said at the company’s global conference event here. He said the capex for the current fiscal would be about ?1,000 crore, which will be invested in expanding capacity and capabilities as also in new product development. The proposed capex is the highest in the recent years. The company will be debottlenecking all its plants to solve the capacity constraints, which arose due to rise in demand for tippers and other vehicles. Dasari also said the shift towards the higher tonnage vehicles in the market helped secure better margins and the company’s revenues will be more than ?25,000 crore for FY18 against ?20,000 crore in the previous year. “But, we will continue to focus on generating double-digit operating margins,” he added. Ashok Leyland’s LCV business has turned positive in terms of margins from negative last year. “We turned this business around completely,” he said. The company will launch 20-25 new products which will include variants and new models across categories this fiscal. The company is betting on products such as 41 tonne fully-built truck and MiTR left-hand-drive for fuelling growth this year. Dasari also highlighted the success of the company's own technology and other customer-centric initiatives such as i-Alert, LeyAssist and LeyKart. “Despite negative campaign against our own innovation, our iEGR technology has proved its mettle across the markets and the sale of more than one lakh trucks in FY18 underlines the faith the customers have on us,” he said. The company’s focus on helping the dealers increase profitability through its MaxServe model has paid dividends. Its dealers were selling about ?530 crore worth of services in FY16 and the value doubled to ?1,048 crore in FY18. “This also resulted in substantial improvement in the service satisfaction index,” said Dasari....
95 Legal Hurdles In RCom’s Asset Sale To Reliance Jio RCOM 18 Apr, 2018 Anil Ambani-led Reliance Communications Ltd. agreed to sell its assets to Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd., the telecom arm of his elder brother Mukesh Ambani, by March-end. The deal has faced legal hurdles and is yet to go through. The Bombay High Court granted a stay on sale of assets which was set aside by the Supreme Court. The top court, however, granted a stay on the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal’s decision allowing sale of towers. That came on a petition of minority shareholder HSBC Daisy Investments (Mauritius) Ltd. The appellate tribunal will now hear the matter April 18. The planned asset sale by debt-laden RCom stems from its inability to repay lenders Rs 45,000 crore. The company had shelved an earlier plan to merge with Aircel Ltd. and sell towers to Blackstone that had helped it win a seven-month moratorium from banks. Here are the details of the two legal challenges to RCom’s asset sale to Reliance Jio: Arbitration Case With Ericsson Telecom equipment maker Ericsson initiated arbitration proceedings against RCom. The arbitration tribunal passed an interim order on March 5 against the sale of assets, the Economic Times reported. Ericsson has made an arguable case and the tribunal is of the opinion that in the event it is denied any relief, it will suffer an irretrievable injury, the report said quoting the tribunal’s order passed by Justice Swatanter Kumar, Justice VS Sirpurkar and Justice SB Sinha—all former Supreme Court judges. The next date of hearing of the arbitration case is June 9. RCom challenged the order in the Bombay High Court on March 8 but was denied relief. The matter headed to the Supreme Court where a bench of Justice AK Goel and Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman set aside the stay. That paved the way of sale of assets, except towers. ‘’There is no legal restriction any more on the company to proceed with sale of its spectrum, MCNs (media convergence nodes) and real estate, and RCom is duly proceeding with the same,” a company spokesperson said in a statement today. Litigation With HSBC Daisy, Others The genesis of this case was the plea against the tower sale filed by HSBC Daisy Investment and a few others citing oppression of minority shareholders to stop the deal from going through. The National Company Law Tribunal ordered a stay until further orders. Reliance Infratel Ltd., RCom’s tower arm, along with State Bank of India approached the Supreme Court, which on April 5 said the matter must first be heard by the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal. The very next day, the NCLAT allowed banks to sing an agreement for RCom’s tower assets and ordered that the proceeds of the sale be held in an escrow account until it decides on a dispute with HSBC Daisy and others. The NCLAT fixed April 18 as the next date of hearing for hearing. Against the interim order, the minority shareholders approached the Supreme Court which stayed the sale till the NCLAT finally decides on the dispute....
96 Oil India commissions 52.5-MW wind energy project OIL 18 Apr, 2018 Oil India Ltd has commissioned a 52.5-MW commercial wind energy project developed partly in Gujarat and partly in Madhya Pradesh. A company statement said that another 500-KW captive solar project in Jorhat, Assam has also been commissioned. The 52.5-MW project is split between a 27.3-MW capacity project operational at Kotiya in Gujarat and a 25.2-MW capacity project operational at Unchwas in Madhya Pradesh. “The Kotiya, Gujarat sub-part of the project was fully commissioned on January 12, while the Unchwas, Madhya Pradesh sub-part was fully commissioned on March 31,” the statement added. With this, OIL’s present installed renewable energy capacity stood at 188.1 MW, including 174.1 MW of wind energy projects and 14 MW of solar energy projects. OIL also commissioned a captive 500-KW solar power project at pump station number 3 in Jorhat, Assam on March 19....
97 Glenmark receives ANDA approval for generic Protopic Ointment GLENMARK 18 Apr, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc., USA (Glenmark) has been granted final approval by the United States Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for Tacrolimus Ointment, 0.1%, the generic version of Protopic Ointment, 0.1%, of Leo Pharma AS. According to IQVIA sales data for the 12 month period ending February 2018, the Protopic Ointment, 0.1% market2 achieved annual sales of approximately $109.0 million. Glenmark’s current portfolio consists of 132 products authorized for distribution in the US marketplace and 61 ANDA’s pending approval with the USFDA. In addition to these internal filings, Glenmark continues to identify and explore external development partnerships to supplement and accelerate the growth of its existing pipeline and portfolio. ...
98 CRISIL assigns ratings to SQS India BFSI’s bank loan facilities CRISIL 17 Apr, 2018 Credit rating agency, CRISIL has assigned ratings to SQS India BFSI’s bank loan facilities worth Rs 7.1 crore. The rating agency has assigned ‘BBB/Stable’ rating to the company’s long-term bank loan facilities and has also assigned ‘A3+’ rating to the short-term bank loan facilities. SQS India BFSI is engaged in providing software testing services. All its clients operate in the banking, financial services and insurance sector, yet each of them have individual needs. To cater to the very distinct needs of its customers, the company has configured its comprehensive range of service capabilities in the area of testing and business requirements assurance. ...
99 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals initiates Phase 2b clinical trial of GBR 830 GLENMARK 17 Apr, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has initiated Phase 2b clinical trial of GBR 830, a novel, investigational treatment for moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis. The trial’s primary endpoint will assess the efficacy of GBR 830, compared to placebo. Secondary and exploratory trial endpoints include additional measures of efficacy, safety and pharmacodynamics. The trial enrollment is expected to begin in June 2018. The Phase 2b, double-blind, placebo-controlled multicenter trial will randomize approximately 392 patients across four dosing arms of GBR 830 and placebo. The trial’s primary endpoint will assess the effectiveness of GBR 830, compared to placebo, on reducing the severity of atopic dermatitis as measured by Investigator’s Global Assessment (IGA). Further, in addition to moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis, Glenmark is evaluating the potential for conducting studies with GBR 830 for the treatment of other inflammatory autoimmune conditions where dysregulation of OX40 overexpression is implicated in disease activity. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals is a global pharmaceutical company. The company is engaged in the development of new chemical entities (NCEs) and new biological entities (NBEs). Its segments are India, United States, Latin America, Europe and Rest of the World (ROW). ...
100 Nestle India moves to fortify mass consumption products NESTLEIND 17 Apr, 2018 Nestle India has dialled-up fortification of its mass consumption products with micronutrients. This is also in keeping with demands of the food regulator Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, which is pushing packaged food companies to fortify their products, especially staples. In its annual report for 2017, Nestle India said: “Micronutrients such as iron, Vitamin A, iodine and zinc are essential for growth and development. We have been fortifying many of our mass consumption products with micronutrients to counter under-nutrition specially among the lower income consumers.” As part of its “Good Food, Good Life” initiative, the company said it launched products such as iron-fortified Maggi Masala Noodles, fortified milk under Nestle a+ and minerals and vitamin fortified ready-to-drink malt beverage Milo. Reduce salt The company also said it plans to further reduce salt in its Maggi portfolio. “We have been making continuous efforts to reduce sodium (salt) in the Maggi portfolio. We are committed to further bringing it down by 10 per cent per serve by 2020,” the company stated in the annual report. Nestle India also said that Maggi Noodles (the core category under brand Maggi) saw a double-digit volume growth in 2017. In a letter to shareholders, Suresh Narayanan, Chairman & Managing Director, Nestle India, said: “2018 is going to be about bringing consumers closer by being responsible, transparent and focusing on sustaining long-term relationships that add value. The industry is evolving at a tremendous pace and we would like to ride the tide and be ahead of the curve. India as a country is undergoing a digital revolution and we will embrace this positively.” Talking about the economic scenario during 2017, the company said: “Beginning of 2017 was slow because of the effects of demonetisation that made consumers restrict their consumption. “There was a slow revival of consumption with the urban market being more resilient compared to rural India. Towards the middle of the year, the economic growth improved.”...
101 Fortis Healthcare raises Rs150 crore debt to stave off bankruptcy FORTIS 17 Apr, 2018 Fortis Healthcare Ltd, which is weighing multiple takeover offers for its assets, has got a Rs150 crore bridge loan from RattanIndia Finance to keep the struggling hospital operator afloat till it finds a buyer, amid a credit squeeze. The non-banking financial company has provided the funding to help Fortis avert bankruptcy, two people close to the development said, requesting anonymity. Fortis has been grappling with legal hurdles and liquidity crises for a while. The healthcare firm reported a consolidated loss of Rs37 crore in the quarter ended 31 March 2017, the latest available financials of the company showed. “The funds raised will be used for meeting operational expenses and improving cash flows in the short term. The repayment will be done after the new promoters come in,” said one of the two people cited above. RattanIndia Finance is an equal joint venture between RattanIndia Group and US-based private equity firm Lone Star Funds. Emails sent to RattanIndia and Lone Star did not elicit any response. Meanwhile, Malaysian firm IHH Healthcare Bhd, which had submitted a non-binding offer for acquiring Fortis hospitals, on Monday said that the Fortis board “has indicated its inability to engage” with it as it has entered into a binding agreement with TPG Capital-backed Manipal Hospital Enterprises Pvt. Ltd for the deal. IHH is now considering launching an open offer in a bid to acquire Fortis, said the second person cited earlier. Later in the day, Fortis in a press release said that its board will be meeting this week “to look at all eligible options and determine the future course of action that is in the best interests of the company, employees and shareholders.” Manipal & TPG’s relentless pursuit of Fortis hospitals: 18 months, 334 drafts The statement mentioned the combined offer received from Hero MotoCorp’s Sunil Munjal and Burmans of Dabur Group along with bids received from Manipal-TPG Capital as well as IHH. It did not specify if IHH was still eligible. The Fortis board will be meeting during the week to discuss the proposals. Manipal Group promoter Ranjan Pai said that the firm has not firmed up its response to a potential open offer from IHH. “We have said that we are not going to be irrational bidders for this asset. We are not engaging with investors right now. We will wait for the board to decide whose proposal will be sent to the EGM for vote. We would not like to waste time if our proposal is not being sent,” Pai said in a phone interview. He further said that sending more than one proposal for shareholder vote may lead to an impasse as no clear winner may emerge in the absence of a promoter block. “It could delay things which the firm cannot afford at this point of time. We have submitted a comprehensive offer from our end,” he said. Fortis Healthcare: Three bids later, investors see no windfall Last week, the Manipal-TPG Capital combine submitted a revised offer to the Fortis board to assuage investor concerns, offering a suitable deal structure and 21% higher valuation than the offer initially submitted on 27 March. Munjals and Burmans together have agreed to infuse Rs 1,250 crore in the firm as well....
102 Aditya Birla Group in talks to raise $1 bn for Idea Cellular OTHER 17 Apr, 2018 The Aditya Birla Group is in talks with buyout firms to sell stakes in promoter entities that control Idea Cellular Ltd to raise more than $1 billion, part of which will be used to pay down regulatory dues of the telecom operator ahead of a merger with Vodafone India Ltd, two people directly aware of the development said. The stake sale transaction is being structured in this way to maintain the total shareholding of the promoter entities in Idea Cellular at the current level, one of the two people cited above said, requesting anonymity. The promoter group of Idea Cellular consists of seven entities, including Aditya Birla Group chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla, owning a combined 42.57% stake. The group’s flagship company Grasim Industries Ltd owns 23.14% in Idea and Birla TMT Holdings Pvt. Ltd owns 6.51%. “The overall size of the deal is expected to be more than $1 billion,” said the second person cited above, also requesting anonymity. Emails seeking responses from Idea Cellular and Aditya Birla Group did not elicit a response until press time on Monday. In January, Aditya Birla group had said that it would invest Rs3,250 crore in Idea Cellular to strengthen its balance sheet. The equity infusion is expected to increase Aditya Birla Group’s stake in Idea Cellular to 47.2%. Vodafone India’s parent also plans to invest nearly Rs9,350 crore as part of the merger conditions, Mint reported. The proposed capital raising by Idea, the sale of its standalone towers to American Tower Corp. and the potential sale of its 11.15% stake in Indus Towers Ltd will further augment the firm’s long-term capital resources, Idea had said in a statement. Mint had also reported in February that Idea Cellular and Vodafone India, whose merger will create India’s largest telecom operator, will invest Rs60,000 crore in infrastructure to meet surging demand for data. Meanwhile, The Economic Times reported earlier this month that the telecom department is likely to ask Vodafone India and Idea Cellular to collectively pay nearly $3 billion in dues relating to a mix of pending licence fees, spectrum usage charges and one-time spectrum charges before clearing their merger. According to the report, Vodafone India’s licence fee and spectrum charge dues are roughly Rs5,532 crore while the one-time spectrum charge due is about Rs3,600 crore. Idea’s total licence fee and spectrum usage charge dues are close to Rs7,625 crore and its one-time spectrum charge dues is Rs2,113 crore....
103 Bajaj Electricals hits record high on Rs 3,578-crore of rural, urban electrification projects BAJAJELEC 17 Apr, 2018 Bajaj Electricals share price rallied 7.5 percent intraday to hit a fresh record high of Rs 665.85 on Tuesday on bagging of orders for rural/urban electrification projects in Uttar Pradesh. The engineering & project business unit of the company has bagged orders for 10 rural/urban electrification projects. The company said the order worth Rs 3,577.93 crore was from Madhyanchal Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited under the Saubhagya Yojna of Government of India in Uttar Pradesh. The scope of work includes work of rural/urban electrification and related work on turnkey basis under the Saubhagya Yojna of Government of India. These projects will be completed within 15 months from the date of issue of letter of intent, the company said. At 11:06 hrs Bajaj Electricals was quoting at Rs 657.75, up Rs 38.55, or 6.23 percent....
104 Suzlon commissions 626 MW of wind power projects in FY18 SUZLON 16 Apr, 2018 Suzlon Group has commissioned 626 MW of wind power projects in the financial year 2017?18 (FY18), the highest installations by any player during this fiscal. With this, Suzlon has gained a market share of 35% despite an extremely challenging year for the sector and several hurdles due to the transition from FIT to bidding regime. As a result, the overall wind industry installations plummeted to 1,766 MW in FY18 (32% of FY17 installations) due to stagnant volumes, uncertainty on PPAs and policy environment. Suzlon Group is one of the leading renewable energy solutions provider in the world with an international presence across 18 countries in Asia, Australia, Europe, Africa and Americas. ...
105 Tata Steel India reports highest ever output at 12.48 MT in FY18 TATASTEEL 16 Apr, 2018 Tata Steel achieved a 6.88% rise in production in FY18 to 12.48 million tonne (MT) in its Indian operations with sales increasing by 10.97% to 12.13 MT during the year. In Europe, however, the company’s sales remained flat during the fiscal at 9.93 MT, while production showed a marginal rise to 10.68 MT over 10.56 MT in FY17. In Q4FY18, Tata Steel India reported a production of 3.07 MT with sales at 3.01 MT. Tata Steel, the flagship company of the Tata g roup is the first integrated steel plant in Asia and is now the world’s second most geographically diversified steel producer and a Fortune 500 Company. ...
106 Marico to make strategic investment in Revofit MARICO 16 Apr, 2018 Marico has agreed to make a strategic investment in Revolutionary Fitness (Revofit) by acquiring/ agreeing to acquire equity shares up to 22.5% of the post-acquisition paid-up share capital of Revofit. Towards this end, the company has on April 13, 2018 entered into Shareholders’ Agreement and Share Subscription Agreement. Marico is one of India’s leading Consumer Products Group, in the global beauty and wellness space. Its products are sold in India and about 25 other countries in Asia and Africa. ...
107 Balmer Lawrie looking at organic growth across businesses BALMLAWRIE 16 Apr, 2018 Diversified PSU Balmer Lawrie & Co Ltd is eyeing organic growth across all its six strategic business units (SBUs), a top company official said. “We are looking at organic growth in all SBUs since inorganic growth was not possible as the funds available for buy-outs were limited,” Chairman and Managing Director Prabal Basu said. The company was facing challenges at the Kolkata plant of industrial packaging (IP), owing to lack of demand from the private sector as government orders were restricted only to the MSMEs, and not the PSUs. Basu told PTI that the networth of the company was ?1,000 crore and only 15 per cent of that could be used for funding acquisitions. “This amount of ?150 crore was little for buy-outs,” he said. Almost a debt-free company, Balmer Lawrie was also not too keen on leveraging, Basu said. “At present, all the SBUs were on growth path. We are shortly going to commission one IP plant (steel drums) at Gujarat at a cost of ?25 crore to ? 30 crore,” he said. Regarding the Kolkata plant, Basu said challenges were being faced due to lack of industrialisation in the state, leading to dearth of private orders. “We are looking for newer product lines at the plant.” The container freight stations (CFS) business of the logistics SBU had also been suffering because of the Centre’s directive of direct delivery to import points from the plants, the top company official said. “This has led to a dip in the CFS business volume by 40 per cent leading to a loss of ? 14 crore to ? 15 crore. Despite this, the logistics SBU contributed maximum to the turnover,” Basu said. Balmer Lawrie has begun operations of a temperature- controlled warehouse. “If this becomes successful, we will replicate this by several numbers,” he added...
108 Passenger vehicle industry: India made four million cars in FY18 OTHER 16 Apr, 2018 It took the Indian passenger vehicle (PV) industry seven years to go from three million to four million in annual production. It produced and sold a record four million vehicles (cars, utility vehicles and vans) in the year ended March 31, 2018. The next milestone of five million vehicles might not take that long but is unlikely to happen by 2020, unlike some earlier forecasts. Between March 2013 and March 2018, domestic PV production saw a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.42 per cent. Assuming this rate stays for the next few years, it could take another five years to reach five million units. The industry is more optimistic. That is because the CAGR in past three years has been 7.72 per cent. R C Bhargava, chairman of Maruti Suzuki, said going from four to five million meant growth of 25 per cent and that cannot take place in two years. “We can expect to touch five million in three or four years. Double-digit annual growth is not happening in the domestic market at this point of time; it is reasonable to think of high single-digit growth. Disruption can come in the form of a surge in fuel prices,” he said. The past seven years of an incremental one million units in production was marked by a year of decline (4.64 per cent in FY14) and another year of low growth (4.54 per cent in FY15). But for these two years, things could have been different. The earlier Automotive Mission Plan of the government (2006-2016) had set a target of four million PV production by 2016. It took two more years to do this. Rakesh Srivastava, director of sales and marketing at Korean car maker Hyundai, said India could achieve five million units in production in three to four years. “The only challenge could be export demand on account of stress in some global markets,” he added. Export of PVs saw its first decline since FY11 in FY17. Shipments are down one per cent to 747,287 units. Exports account for almost a fifth of total sales. Its growth will play an important role in the road to five million units. Vishnu Mathur, director general of the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers, said it was difficult to predict the demand growth for cars, since this was linked to economic growth and income levels. India was projected to become the third-largest PV market by 2020, according to estimates. It stood fifth in 2017 after China, the US, Japan and Germany. At 3.22 million units, local consumption in 2017 in India was not far from Germany’s 3.44 million sales. It is unlikely to bridge this gap in next two years, implying that India could be the fourth largest market, not the third, in 2020. ...
109 Gitanjali Gems To Contribute Rs 8,000 Crore To India’s Bad Loan Menace GITANJALI 16 Apr, 2018 Non-performing assets or bad loans in the banking sector are set to shoot up by at least Rs 8,000 crore as advances to the scam-hit Gitanjali Gems group have turned bad during the quarter ended March 31. Banks will have to make provisioning of Rs 8,000 crore for Gitanjali alone as there has been no servicing of the working capital loan during the fourth quarter of last financial year, sources said. Gitanjali, among others, is the major account which has turned bad in the fourth quarter of 2017-18. Gross NPAs of all the banks in the country amounted to Rs 8,40,958 crore in December, led by industry loans followed by services and agriculture sectors, as per the government estimates. Gitanjali is promoted by Mehul Choksi, uncle of billionaire diamantaire Nirav Modi, who defrauded Punjab National Bank of over Rs 13,000 crore by getting fake Letters of Undertaking/Credit issued from one of the bank's branches in Mumbai. PNB had issued as many as 1,590 LoUs to Modi, Choksi and their associates. A special Central Bureau of Investigation court in Mumbai has issued non-bailable warrants against Modi as well as Choksi. Mumbai Court Issues Non-Bailable Warrant Against Nirav Modi And Mehul Choksi On CBI’s Request A consortium of 21 banks led by Allahabad Bank had first extended working capital loans to Gitanjali Gems in 2010-11. In 2014, ICICI Bank became the jeweller’s lead banker as it had highest exposure of about Rs 900 crore. Till December 2017, the loans to Gitanjali Gems were standard and regular debt servicing was being done. There was no servicing of debt in the last quarter ended March 31, so it has to be declared NPA by all banks, said a senior bank official of the consortium. In 2015, the consortium had restructured working capital loans given to Gitanjali under the joint lenders' forum mechanism. The Gitanjali exposure was classified as a special mention account-2 in 2014 after the company failed to fulfil its payment obligations for more than 60 days, triggering the formation of a JLF. As a result, the company announced consolidation of the business at the group level to improve cash flows and reduce costs in various activities such as sourcing, manufacturing, distribution, exporting and retailing. It proposed the merger of Asmi Jewellery India and Spectrum Jewellery with Nakshatra Brands and also the merger of Gitanjali Jewellery Retail and Gitanjali Lifestyle with GILI India. Different investigating agencies, including CBI, I-T and Enforcement Directorate, are probing the fraud, which came to light in January, dubbed as the biggest banking scam in the country....
110 RIL executes definitive agreements to acquire 72.69% stake in Embibe RELIANCE 13 Apr, 2018 Reliance Industries (RIL) has executed definitive agreements to acquire majority shareholding constituting 72.69% (on fully diluted basis) from existing investors of Indiavidual Learning (Embibe), a leading AI-based education platform leveraging data analytics to deliver personalized learning outcomes to each student. The company has agreed to invest up to rupee equivalent of $180 million into Embibe, (including consideration to be paid for acquiring majority stake from existing investors) over the next three years. Embibe will use the capital over the next three years towards deepening its R&D on AI in education, as well as business growth and geographic expansion, catering to students across K-12, higher education, professional skilling, vernacular languages and all curriculum categories across India and internationally. RIL is India’s largest private sector company. The company’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
111 BEML launches Medium Bullet Proof 4x4 Vehicle BEML 13 Apr, 2018 BEML has launched Medium Bullet Proof 4x4 Vehicle (MBPV 4x4) at DEFEXPO 2018 - Land, Naval & Internal Homeland Security Systems Exhibition. The BEML MBPV 4x4, is a 4x4 Wheel RH Drive heavy duty all weather off-road mobility vehicle, specially designed for easy manoeuvrability, operability and maintainability. BEML a leading mining and construction equipment manufacturer has designed and developed indigenously over 40 products through its R&D, and are not only working in India but also in 65 countries around the world. ...
112 Ashok Leyland bags order worth over Rs 100 crore from MoD ASHOKLEY 13 Apr, 2018 Ashok Leyland has won another critical order from the Ministry of Defence (MoD). The contract is for supplying the company's High Mobility 10x10 vehicles (HMV 10x10). This order will end a long search by the Indian Army, who have been looking for HMV 10x10s to carry the Smerch Rockets, this initial order is worth over Rs 100 crore. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
113 Cement Prices Recover In April But Fall Short Of Seasonal Strength OTHER 13 Apr, 2018 Cement prices recovered in April but remained lower than the levels typically seen during the summer months, usually a period of brisk construction activity. All-India cement prices increased by Rs 5 to Rs 326 per bag on a month-on-month basis in April after a sharp decline in the previous month, according to a dealer’s survey conducted by Kotak Institutional Equities. But that’s lower than the levels typically seen in the middle of a busy construction season, especially given rising cost pressures, the brokerage said. Prices have been volatile since late last year when the introduction of the Real Estate Regulation Act and the Goods and Services Tax hurt real estate demand, slowing down construction. Prices rose in December, signalling an improvement that continued in January and February, but fell again in March as companies focussed on higher volumes. The recovery in April is mainly on account of price hikes undertaken by western, central and southern regions, Kotak said. All three regions had cut prices in March. Prices were hiked by Rs 8 per bag in western India, the biggest increase in eleven months. Maharashtra undertook a hike of Rs 17 per bag while prices declined in both Gujarat and Goa. Prices rose to a four-month high in central India. The recovery was especially sharp in the south after a stayed an order banning sand mining in Tamil Nadu. In the north, prices were slashed by Rs 3 per bag after a steep Rs 6 cut in the previous month. Prices in Rajasthan fell by Rs 10 per bag while Punjab and Delhi saw a decline of Rs 5. But prices could recover in the range of Rs 10-15 per bag amid a busy construction season, Banwari Lal Katta, a north India-based dealer and proprietor of Universal Agency told BloombergQuint. JPMorgan Downgrades Global financial major JPMorgan downgraded the ratings of two pan India players, ACC and Ambuja Cement Ltd. citing a difficult year ahead for cement companies. Volume expansion has taken a precedence over pricing power for most cement companies, it said in a report. The lack of pricing discipline in light of continued cost presures will continue to weigh on profitability and the valuation outlook for listed cement stocks in FY19....
114 Oaktree Capital Says India May Be Growth Engine in 3-5 Years OTHER 12 Apr, 2018 Oaktree Capital Group LLC, one of the world’s largest distressed debt investors, is eyeing India as a key market as the nation overhauls its bankruptcy rules and banks battle with a historic bad debt clean-up. “I wouldn’t be surprised to see India as another engine of growth maybe in the next three to five years,” said Jay Wintrob, chief executive officer at the Los Angeles-based firm, in an interview in Hong Kong. “We are spending a lot of time in India, getting up to speed.” India’s $210 billion pile of stressed assets and distressed borrowers have attracted global funds from Varde Partners to JC Flowers & Co. The nation’s so-called dirty dozen -- 12 large debtors that have been ordered to go through the bankruptcy courts -- are testing the country’s insolvency rules. A high-profile default by Reliance Communications Ltd. is also proving a litmus test for how foreign creditors get treated. Oaktree, which has about $100 billion of assets under management, doesn’t have an onshore presence in India, and currently invests a “very, very small amount” in the nation, according to Wintrob. Local Partners “We have yet to open our first Oaktree office in India. That’s something we have considered,” said Wintrob. “I think we are looking to form one or more local partnerships.” The distressed debt investor has seven offices in Asia, including ones in Hong Kong, Singapore, Shanghai and Beijing. Wintrob said that “under the right circumstances,” his firm may open a physical office in India at some point. Oaktree is following the limited number of insolvency proceedings in India and feels optimistic about how those proceedings are going, said Wintrob. Potential ways to expand in the nation could include setting up or investing in non-banking financial companies and India’s bad loan buyers, or so-called asset-reconstruction companies, he added. The firm is looking to lend directly to companies in India and also invest in bad loan portfolios, and is looking at sectors including energy and infrastructure, according to Wintrob. He declined to say whether Oaktree is looking at the dirty dozen. ...
115 Adani enters multiple tie-ups to further Defence play ADANIENT 12 Apr, 2018 Adani Group is betting big on its defence and aerospace with a slew of new projects in the next two years. The group forayed into this sector three years ago. To begin with, Adani will start a new plant at Hyderabad to manufacture composite aero structure for Hermes 900, a tactical medium-altitude, long-endurance unmanned air vehicle system, in tie-up with Elbit Systems of Israel. The joint venture will set up a plant in Hyderabad, a km from airport, with an initial investment of $15 million, which will go up to $100 million depending on the order from the government, he told newspersons. Adani and Elbit have a joint venture to develop, maintain, unilaterally integrate payloads and upgrade Hermes 900 and 450 Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) in India. The joint venture will provide dedicated support to Indian Armed Forces to ensure availability of UAS, said Ashish Rajvanshi, Head of Adani Defence & Aerospace, at DefExpo2018. Adani, in association with Saab group of Sweden, will establish a facility for assembly, integration and flight testing of aircraft. This facility will consist of design and engineering centre, parts manufacturing and testing and structural assembly and integration facilities, he said, without giving details on the location. At DefExpo2018, a tripartite alliance was announced among Adani Group, Punj Lloyd and US-based Rave Gears to design and manufacture high precision gears and transmission systems for rotary platforms. The partners will set up a manufacturing unit at Punj Lloyd's Gwalior facility, said Ashok Wadhawan, President Manufacturing Business at Punj Lloyd. The production is likely to commence in a year, he said. The facility will manufacture gears and gear assemblies mainly for rotary platforms, currently under production in India for Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, and for future programmes like Naval Utility Helicopters and Naval Multi Role Helicopters. The collaboration will use manufacturing base in India for exports to global OEMs, both in the military and civil aerospace domain, says a joint press release. The three companies aim at increasing self-reliance at the tier-I level, which will be critical for system integration of platforms in India. The collaboration furthers the indigenisation agenda under ‘Make in India’ programme and will bring state-of-the-art technology to the country, the release said....
116 Tata Sons To Consolidate Aerospace, Defence Companies Across The Group OTHER 12 Apr, 2018 Tata Sons today said it is in the process of consolidating its various businesses across aerospace and defence sectors under a single entity – Tata Aerospace & Defence. “The necessary statutory and regulatory approvals are in the process of being obtained,” the Tata Sons said in statement. “The formation of Tata A&D, a single unified entity, will allow us to better target emerging opportunities in Aerospace and Defence, and engage holistically with customers both in India and globally,” N Chandrasekaran, chairman of Tata Sons, said in the statement. The company said Tata A&D proposes to leverage its full range of expertise, experience and capabilities from across the Group related to land mobility solutions, aerospace, weapon systems, sensors and command, control, communication, computers and intelligence . Several companies proposed to be forming part of Tata A&D already have strong, established partnerships with leading aerospace and defence firms and are part of the global supply chain. In some instances, they are also a global single source provider. Tata Sons Statement Tata A&D will also be deeply invested in the development of indigenous platforms uniquely suited for the Indian defence forces, which is central to Tata A&D's long-term strategy, the statement added. “In addition to the growing list of joint ventures and collaborations with leading global equipment manufacturers, Tata A&D proposes to bring together over 6,000 employees, and have production facilities in the states of Telangana, Karnataka, Jharkhand, and Maharashtra,” the company said. Banmali Agrawala, President, Infrastructure and Defence & Aerospace, Tata Sons, said, “Tata A&D when formed, will be better equipped to execute larger and more complex projects and be more globally competitive as part of the global supply chain.” Post the combination, the full range of integrated solutions by Tata A&D will include multi-axle combat support vehicles, light armoured vehicles, light support vehicles, mine protected vehicles, light armoured multi-role combat vehicles, wheeled armoured amphibious platforms (WHAP) and tracked amphibious platforms like the Futuristic Infantry Combat Vehicle (FICV) and Future Ready Combat Vehicle (FRCV). It said the airborne platforms and systems of the company will include unmanned systems, rotary platforms, fixed wing platforms, mission systems and avionics, as well as in-house indigenous development of mini and micro unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and in-house development of safety-critical airborne computer systems and related applications for both manned and unmanned platforms. “Subsequent to the consolidation, Tata A&D will draw synergies from entities across the group, including Tata Motors' Defence Division, TAL Manufacturing Solutions Limited (subsidiary of Tata Motors), Tata Power's Strategic Engineering Division, Tata Advanced Materials Limited, and Tata Advanced Systems Limited,” the company said....
117 Ashok Leyland in overdrive on mobility solutions ASHOKLEY 12 Apr, 2018 With expansion of its product range, Ashok Leyland seeks to grow the share of participation in defence capital outlay in order to maintain its strong position in offering land-based mobility solutions to the Indian Army. The Hinduja Group flagship company also plans to grow the share of exports in defence business to 15-20 per cent over the next few years. “We are expecting the capital outlay of Army for all modernisation and weapon procurement programmes to grow to about ?80,000 crore over the next five to six years. We hope to participate in 20-22 per cent of this outlay, up from five per cent level now,” Amandeep Singh, Head – Defence, told BusinessLine. “Presently, with about five per cent participation in army’s capital outlay, we maintain a market share of about 65 per cent in the logistics solutions space for army. But with our growing addressable share, we will still be able to garner a decent chunk and maintain our position,” he further added. Ashok Leyland has expanded its range from providing logistics vehicles to supplying contour military vehicles, missile carriers, and armoured vehicles to tracked vehicles. “All these vehicles were imported earlier. We have now become a complete mobility solution provider to army,” he said. Today, the cumulative value of the projects in which Ashok Leyland is participating is worth more than ?50,000 crore over the next 10 years. It has won 12 out of 15 mobility vehicles tenders of the army recently. “We continue to have very good hit rates and we hope to maintain this,” said Singh. In armoured vehicles, it has started supplies to police forces in some States that include Jammu & Kashmir and Punjab. It is also working with paramilitary forces for supply of these vehicles. The company sees huge potential in tracked vehicles (tanks such T-72, T-90 etc) as the Indian Army is looking to upgrade or modernise these equipment in terms of engines, suspensions parts and mobility systems as they have been in service for more than two decades. The company is also looking opportunities in two more areas – supply of power packs for artillery guns and exports. “We are targeting the self-propelled artillery guns programme where our power packs can be used. Presently, these power packs are being imported. The average cost of these packs will be ?15-20 lakh depending upon the size, parts etc,” he said. Ashok Leyland is exporting its logistics vehicles to Africa and is looking to target West Asia and ASEAN markets due to favourable growth opportunities....
118 Grofers finds success with D-Mart model for online groceries AVENUE SUPERMARTS 12 Apr, 2018 About a year ago, online groceries start-up Grofers changed its business model to replicate India’s most profitable and fastest growing large modern retailer D-Mart. The Gurugram-based start-up, which claims to have price savings at par with D-Mart, reduced its stocked items and now focuses on the lower middle class and middle class consumers. The result has been a 300% growth in topline and reduced losses, said Albinder Dhindsa, co-founder and chief executive officer, Grofers in an interview to Mint. D-Mart (Avenue Supermarts Ltd), which replicated Walmart Inc, is best known for its “everyday low cost, everyday low price” strategy, and is India’s most valuable listed retailer. Grofers ended FY18 with sales revenues of Rs700 crore, up from Rs250 crore a year ago. Losses have remained the same at Rs200 crore for both financial years 2017 and 2018, said Dhindsa. The revenues for the privately-held company comprise of seven to eight entities, said Dhindsa, but refused to disclose the registered names of all the companies. In November 2017, Grofers completed its 10-month long transitioning to an inventory-led model from a hyperlocal delivery start-up. Last year, the company also decided to change its positioning to focus on the lower middle class and middle class consumer of India. “We wanted to be the D-Mart for online consumers,” said Dhindsa. What this meant was reducing its stock-keeping units or items by nearly 40% from 6,500 to 4,000 units and quicker turnaround time per item at 15 days as compared to 35-40 days a year-ago. The online grocer also introduced its own private label brands and regional brands which were lower priced. These two categories—regional and private label—now account for 20% each of its overall revenues. “In terms of savings and pricing we are now at par with D-Mart,” claimed Dhindsa. As a result, the profile of the Grofers consumer has changed. A Grofers consumer now comes typically from the “motorcycle families”: 2-3 people per household with less than Rs100,000 monthly income, said Dhindsa, adding that they are less than 35 years of age. Three out of four Grofers shoppers are women. That’s a change from the consumers shopping online a year-ago: 65% of them were men from the richest households of the country. “E-commerce players like Bigbasket and Grofers have snatched market share from brick and mortar (B&M) retailers,” according to a January report by Edelweiss securities Ltd. However, they are still making losses, the report added. Meanwhile, B&M retailers are launching their online groceries business. In the first nine months of this fiscal, Avenue Supermarts Ltd posted a 28% gain in revenues and a 60% jump in net profit. D-Mart had last year launched a pilot e-commerce portal dmart.in. Consumers in certain areas of Mumbai can now shop online and get doorstep delivery or opt to order online and pick up from a DMart Ready Pick Up Point. Meanwhile, all majority foreign-owned online grocers have raised yet another round of funding in February. Grofers raised Rs400 crore (around $62 million) in a Series E round led by existing investor SoftBank Group Corp. Rival BigBasket, operated by Supermarket Grocery Supplies Pvt. Ltd, had raised a much larger sum of $300 million in a Series E funding round led by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. The money will be used to fund its aggressive growth plans, said Dhindsa. Grofers expects to end FY19 with revenue of Rs2,200 crore. It exited March with monthly sales of Rs120 crore, up from Rs26 crore a year ago. Bigbasket, on the other hand, has sales of Rs200 crore every month and expects to end FY19 with sales of Rs500 crore a month, co-founder and chief executive Hari Menon had told Mint in February....
119 Bharat Forge bags two export defence orders in PV segment BHARATFORG 12 Apr, 2018 India-based diversified global conglomerate Bharat Forge Limited (BFL) bagged two defence orders in the Protected Vehicles segment. This segment comprises of vehicles like the Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC), Light Bullet Resistant Vehicle (LBRV), Ultra-Light Strike Vehicle (ULSV), Light Armoured Vehicle (LAM) and the Armoured Troop Carrier (ATC). The first order was for 4 x 4 APC, Class II (STANAG 4569) for the UN missions of Indian Army. The second order was for supplying an ATC to an Asian country. The second order was part of a larger order. Both these kind of vehicles are fitted with 360 degree rotating armoured turret with modular weapon mounts to meet lethality requirements. The vehicles have been successfully tested and evaluated by armies globally, including Indian Army. Bharat Forge has manufacturing facilities spread across India, Germany, Sweden, France and North America. Commercial vehicle segment contributed 42%, industrial segment 46% and passenger vehicle segment 12% to segmental revenues of Q3FY18. Geography wise India formed 44%, Americas formed 39%, Europe formed 14% and Asia Pacific formed 3% of Q3FY18 revenues. BFL, through a slew of measures including light weighting of components, new product development focused on entire powertrain and emission solution is well primed to capture the opportunities arising from the technological upgradation required to meet the emission norm applicable from 2020. Bharat Forge Ltd ended at Rs731.10 up by Rs0.55 or 0.08% from its previous closing of Rs730.55 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs735 and touched a high and low of Rs741.40 and Rs727.95 respectively. A total of 19,00,620(NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs34,013.58cr. ...
120 M&M’s Bolero achieves 10 lakh unit sales milestone since inception M&M 11 Apr, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra’s (M&M) iconic SUV - Bolero has touched a new milestone, having sold 10 lakh units, since inception. Bolero has also regained its position in the list of Top 10 Passenger Vehicles of India where it features as the third highest selling SUV in the country. Bolero has registered year-on-year growth of 23%, outperforming the industry which has witnessed 17% growth. M&M is the flagship company of the Mahindra Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. Amongst the various business interests of its parent group, the company is mainly involved in the automobile manufacturing. It is one of the leading auto companies of India ...
121 Saudi Oil Goal of $80 a Barrel Will Hurt Fastest Growing Buyer OTHER 11 Apr, 2018 Oil’s rally to $70 a barrel is threatening to clip India’s economic wings at a time when Saudi Arabia is looking to join a $30 billion refinery project in the world’s fastest growing market. The South Asian nation wants to see prices at about $50 a barrel in order to manage its finances better, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said in an interview. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia -- which is said to be aiming for oil near $80 to pay for its own crowded policy agenda -- is planning to sign a deal to participate in a refinery on India’s west coast as part of its strategy to secure sources of consumption for its crude. While Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration reaped the benefits of the biggest price crash in a generation during its first term in power, oil is recovering as the government gears up for elections in 2019. Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest crude exporter, is preparing for an initial public offering of its state-run producer and leading efforts by OPEC to curb output and eliminate a global glut that spurred oil’s decline. “We are a very price-sensitive consumer,’’ Pradhan said on Tuesday. “From Indian consumers’ point of view, I will be more than happy if the price is around $50 a barrel.’’ Saudi Arabian Oil Co., known as Saudi Aramco, has agreed in principle to join a proposed 1.2 million barrel a day refiner on India’s west coast, he added. Refinery Deal Saudi Aramco’s Chief Executive Officer Amin Nasser will sign a memorandum of understanding on Wednesday for the project with RRPC, or Ratnagiri Refinery & Petrochemicals, a consortium consisting of state-run refiners Indian Oil Corp., Hindustan Petroleum Corp. and Bharat Petroleum Corp., said a person familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified before an official announcement. Aramco may take a 50 percent equity stake in the project and can bring in another strategic investor, the person said. Nobody immediately replied to an email seeking comment sent to Aramco’s press office outside regular business hours. “Things are on the table, we are discussing with each other,” Pradhan said, referring to Saudi Arabian participation in the project. “It has to be a win-win situation for both. It must be acceptable to them, it must be profitable for me also.’’ He confirmed on Wednesday that a preliminary deal will be signed with Aramco. Saudi Arabia has been edged out as the top oil supplier to India amid an intensifying race among producers to retain their most-prized markets. India, which imports about 80 percent of its crude requirements, has been diversifying its sources of oil supply and is seeking more favorable terms from producers in the Middle East. Saudi Strategy The potential partnership in India would be an extension of Aramco’s strategy to lock up market share by investing in refineries in Asia, the region that’s driving global oil demand growth. Over the last few years, the Middle East kingdom has committed billions to projects in Malaysia and Indonesia, as well as a new refining and petrochemical plant in China. Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih is scheduled to speak at the 16th International Energy Forum in New Delhi this week, along with other Middle Eastern countries’ ministers. ...
122 Uflex launches new solvent-based laminating adhesive UFLEX 10 Apr, 2018 Uflex’s Chemicals Business has unveiled a general performance 2K solvent-based Polyurethane (PU) laminating adhesive under FLEXBON Brand for food packaging and general applications. Reducing the use of solvents is the prime driver behind creating this product. Uflex's Chemicals Business launched this product commercially at its production unit, located in Noida (Uttar Pradesh, India). This product has good wettability and solvent release during lamination; it offers good adhesion on all metallized and non-metallized films and is easy to handle. Owing to its great potential globally, the Chemicals Business of Uflex plans to target both domestic and international markets with this offering. Uflex is India’s largest multinational flexible packaging materials and Solution Company and an emerging global player. Since its inception back in 1985, Uflex has grown from strength to strength to evolve as a truly Indian Multinational with consumers spread across the world. ...
123 Merrill Lynch buys ICICI Bank shares worth Rs 823 cr MERRILL LYNCH 10 Apr, 2018 Merrill Lynch today bought nearly 3 crore shares of ICICI Bank for Rs 823.40 crore through an open market transaction. According to the block deal data available with BSE, Merrill Lynch Markets Singapore Pte Ltd acquired 2.94 crore shares, amounting to 0.46 per cent stake in the bank. The shares were picked up at an average price of Rs 280, valuing the transaction at Rs 823.40 crore, the data showed. The scrips were sold by Baillie Gifford Emerging Markets Fund. ICICI Bank is embroiled in a controversy over the alleged conflict of interest and quid pro quo involving its CEO Chanda Kochhar and her family members in extending a loan to Videocon Group. The CBI has launched a preliminary investigation into the Rs 3,250 crore loan ICICI Bank had extended to Videocon in 2012 and the role of Kochhar's husband. As per the allegations, Videocon chairman Venugopal Dhoot invested Rs 64 crore in NuPower Renewables, a firm owned by Deepak Kochhar after Videocon secured a loan from a consortium of lenders, including ICICI Bank....
124 Jet Airways too opts out of Air India bid JETAIRWAYS 10 Apr, 2018 According to earlier media reports, Jet Airways was supposed to bid for the government owned Air India in consortium with its European carrier combine partners Air France-KLM and its American partner carrier Delta Air Lines. However, this news was never confirmed by the airlines. It is now speculated that the airline has decided not to participate in the bid, which will be closing on May 14, 2018. Earlier, Indigo had made an official announcement stating that the airline has not participated in the bid for acquisition of Air India. The government had invited expressions of interest (EoI) on March 28, 2018 for stake sale in Air India. The government proposes to sell 76% of Air India along with low-fare subsidiary Air India Express and a 50% stake in AISATS, a ground handling joint venture with Singapore Airport Terminal Services (SATS), as a single entity along with most of the national carrier’s debt. Air India had a domestic market share of 12.3% and international market share at 16.9% at the end of Q3CY17. The government may announce the winning bidder by May 28, 2018. We believe Air India's huge debt of Rs33,392cr and government's plan to sell the airline as a package (including subsidiaries and JVs) may have discouraged the leading airlines like Jet Airways and Indigo to opt out of the bidding. We believe it is a right move for Jet Airways as the airline is suffering from lower yields from international segment and lower RASK growth (1.4% yoy in Q3FY18). The company has debt of ~Rs7,900cr and acquiring a stake in Air India would have further increased its debt burden....
125 NMDC reports 35.50 MT production of iron ore up to March 2018 NMDC 09 Apr, 2018 NMDC has reported 35.50 million tonnes (MT) of iron ore production and logged sales volume of 36.07 MT up to the month of March 2018. The company’s Chhattisgarh mines produced 23.50 MT of iron ore and registered sales volume of 23.16 MT, while Karnataka mines produced 12.00 MT of iron ore and sold 12.91 MT of iron ore up to March 2018. NMDC is a state-controlled mineral producer of the Government of India. It is fully owned by the Government of India and is under administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. ...
126 Binani Industries to move Supreme Court with Rs 7,618 cr offer BINANIIND 09 Apr, 2018 Binani Industries has decided to move the Supreme Court with an appeal to redeem the pledge of its assets in debt ridden subsidiary Binani Cements Ltd from its lenders and will also submit 10 percent of the offer to prove its commitment, a company official today said. "We are moving the Supreme Court for sure. We have assurance of support from most of the lenders for this move," a Binani group spokesman told PTI. Redeeming the pledge will mean seeking an end to the bankruptcy proceedings against it from the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). The Committee of Creditors (CoC), despite supporting the Rs 7,618 crore offer, declined to accept it due to lack of clarity in legal interpretation in several rounds of meeting held both yesterday and today. The Binani group had sought lenders' support on whether it should move the apex court or not. Lenders, part of the Committee of Creditors (CoC), desired that there was no problem in the offer unless a higher adjudicating authority permits it. Binani, backed by Aditya Birla group's UltraTech Cement, has already received comfort letter for financial support. Binani has agreed to pay the interest till date since the insolvency proceedings started. From the day insolvency proceedings were initiated by NCLT, the interest on dues are not charged. UltraTech Cement entered into an agreement with Binani Industries to buy 98.43 percent stake in Binani Cements. Operational creditors are supporting UltraTech backed Binani offer as it covers entire claim. Dalmia Bharat group, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Rajputana Properties, had emerged as the highest bidder with an offer to pay Rs 6,350 crore for Binani Cements. The fate of the takeover is hanging in the balance and is set to reach the Supreme Court. Binani group is hoping to get a favorable outcome from the apex court that will empower the CoC to consent to an out-of-court settlement even after Dalmia Bharat's final voted offer had been submitted before the NCLT, Binani and lenders sources said. Bharat Dalmia officials has said any out-of-court settlement, while a company undergoes bankruptcy proceedings, will set a bad precedent....
127 Alembic Pharmaceuticals receives USFDA approval for Acyclovir ointment ALEMBICLTD 09 Apr, 2018 Alembic Pharmaceuticals has received approval from the US Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for its Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) Acyclovir ointment USP, 5%. The approved ANDA is therapeutically equivalent to the reference listed drug product (RLD) Zovirax ointment 5%, of Valeant Pharmaceuticals North America LLC. Acyclovir ointment USP, 5% is indicated in the management of initial genital herpes and in limited non-life-threatening mucocutaneous Herpes simplex virus infections in immunocompromised patients. Acyclovir ointment USP, 5%, has an estimated market size of $145 million for twelve months ending December 2016, according to IMS. Alembic Pharmaceuticals, a vertically integrated research and development pharmaceutical company, has been at the forefront of Healthcare since 1907. The company now has a total of 71 ANDA approvals (63 final approvals and 8 tentative approvals) from USFDA. ...
128 India Seeks $15 Billion Fighter Jets in World's Largest Deal OTHER 09 Apr, 2018 India asked global companies to submit proposals for 110 fighter jets, the world’s biggest such order currently. The Indian Air Force sought requests for information for the supply of single- and twin-seat jets to be mostly manufactured locally, it said in a statement on its website. The Asian nation had earlier scrapped a deal to buy 126 fighter jets from Dassault Aviation SA, and instead opted to import 36 Rafale aircraft. The order announced on Friday could be worth at least $15 billion, and will be the world’s largest fighter aircraft deal, said Rahul Bedi, a New Delhi-based analyst at Jane’s Information Services. At least 85 percent of the jets -- three-quarters of which are single-seat aircraft and the rest twin-seat -- have to be made in India and manufacturers interested in bidding need to send their proposals by July 6, according to the government. Getting new aircraft is crucial for Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the South Asian nation faces increased risks from neighboring Pakistan and China at a time when the Russian MiG fighters -- India’s mainstay -- are being phased out. The country’s air force and navy require as many as 400 single- and double-engine combat aircraft, according to the government. The first aircraft must be delivered within three years of signing the contract. The South Asian country started looking for new warplanes in 2007, a contest that ended with the government selecting Dassault Aviation for 126 Rafale jets for $11 billion. With talks stalling over price and quality guarantees, the government scrapped the purchase in 2015 and bought 36 jets separately to speed up the process. India was revising the specifications to allow manufacturers such as Boeing Co. and United Aircraft Corp. to pitch their twin-engine combat aircraft in the deal, people familiar with the matter said in February. Modi wants to modernize the country’s aging military equipment with a $250 billion spending, but it has been bogged down by a defense procurement process which is known for delays, backtracking and a history of corruption, making it a sensitive, slow-going process....
129 Bharti Airtel to enhance network capacity by up to 7 times BHARTIARTL 09 Apr, 2018 Bharti Airtel will deploy the advanced Massive MIMO pre 5G-technology at Indian Premier League (IPL) match venues that can enhance its network capacity by up to seven times and provide high speed connection to its consumers. Massive MIMO expands existing network capacity by five to seven times over existing spectrum. The company will deploy the Massive MIMO solution in IPL match venues in Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mohali, Indore, Jaipur, Bengaluru and Chennai. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
130 NMDC fixes prices of iron ore NMDC 07 Apr, 2018 NMDC has fixed the prices of iron ore with effect from April 4, 2018. The prices of Lump Ore have been fixed at Rs 3,000 per ton, while the prices of Fines have been fixed at Rs 2,660 per ton. The above FOR prices are excluding Royalty, DMF, NMET, Cess, Forest Permit Fee etc. NMDC is a state-controlled mineral producer of the Government of India. It is fully owned by the Government of India and is under administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. ...
131 Apollo Pipes commences commercial production at new manufacturing unit in Ahmedabad APOLLO 07 Apr, 2018 Apollo Pipes has commenced commercial production at its new manufacturing facility in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. The state-of-the-art manufacturing facility will have an initial capacity of 10,000 MTPA, thereby taking the company’s total available capacity to 63,000 MTPA. The company plans to further expand capacity at the Ahmedabad facility to 25,000 MTPA by March 2019. Apollo Pipes, formally known as Amulya Leasing and Finance, is a Delhi based company and in engaged in the business of financing, and sale and purchase of shares in India. ...
132 Tata Motors along with DHCV unveils three new commercial vehicles in Malaysia TATAMOTORS 06 Apr, 2018 Tata Motors along with its authorized distributor DRB-HICOM Commercial Vehicles (DHCV) has launched the Tata Super Ace and the Ultra range of commercial vehicles (Ultra 814 and ULTRA 1014) in Malaysia. These vehicles have been designed for the modern commercial vehicle customer, with superior performance, world-class cabins, high load carrying capacity and flexible body-load configurations. The Tata Super ACE is a 1 ton mini-truck from Tata Motors, for inter-city and intra-city transportation solutions. The Ultra 814 offers enhanced levels of durability and reliability on the ULTRA platform, while the ULTRA 1014 offers faster turnaround time and enhanced profitability for any goods carrying business, making it an ideal work-horse for movement of materials across distances. Tata Motors is India’s largest automobile company. Through subsidiaries and associate companies, Tata Motors has operations in the UK, South Korea, Thailand, South Africa and Indonesia. Among them is Jaguar Land Rover, the business comprising the two iconic British brands. ...
133 Bharti Airtel to provide live streaming of IPL cricket matches BHARTIARTL 06 Apr, 2018 Bharti Airtel will provide free live streaming of Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket matches through Hotstar on its TV app to its customers. The company will offer its users unlimited free streaming of all live matches and highlights from the upcoming Vivo IPL 2018 through Hotstar app. Airtel TV app users will not have to pay the subscription fee charged by Hotstar for watching IPL 2018 cricket matches. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
134 RCom Hopes To Cut Debt By Rs 25,000 Crore From Asset Sale RCOM 06 Apr, 2018 Anil Ambani’s Reliance Communications Ltd. today said it expects to reduce debt by around Rs 25,000 crore after the Supreme Court lifted a stay on the sale of assets of the company. “There is now no bar in immediately completing the asset sales of spectrum, Media Convergence Nodes and real estate, and the same shall be concluded expeditiously,” RCom said in a statement. The Bombay High Court had granted stay on RCom’s asset sale on an appeal by its vendor Ericsson. The Hon’ble Supreme Court has directed that secured lenders can proceed with the asset sales in accordance with law. RCom Statement RCom in December signed an agreement with Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. to sell spectrum, mobile towers, fiber network and MCNs. The National Company Law Tribunal had also granted a stay in favour of minority shareholders holding around 4 percent stake in Reliance Infratel Ltd. Now the apex court has directed the company and its lenders to file an appeal at the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal instead of directly approaching them, the statement added. Also Read: Top Indian Lender Throws Weight Behind Ambani's RCom Asset Sale RCom said that based on legal advise and today’s order it is optimistic of securing appropriate relief from the NCLAT to enable sales of tower and fibre assets. Based on these developments, RCom is now confident of achieving overall debt reduction of approximately Rs 25,000 crore within the next few weeks, from the first phase of the asset monetisation programme. RCom Statement The Anil Ambani-led firm said that the claim of the minority investors, which is fully disputed by RCom, can, in any case, be a maximum of approximately Rs 200-300 crore....
135 IOC concludes acquisition of 17% participating interest in Mukhaizna oil field IOC 06 Apr, 2018 Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has completed acquisition of 17% participating interest in Mukhaizna Oil Field (including the Marketing Rights for entitlement oil) by acquiring 100% equity stake in Shell Exploration & Production Oman (SEPOL) from Shell Overseas Holdings (Shell), for a transaction value of $329 million. The company has made this acquisition through its wholly owned subsidiary, IOCL Singapore. The effective date of the transaction is January 1, 2017. This is IOC’s first producing upstream acquisition in Oman which will further enhance its growth in the upstream sector in the Middle East. The Mukhaizna Oil Field is the single largest producing individual oil field in Oman, contributing approximately 13% of total Omani crude production with current production of 1,20,000 bbl/d. It is also, the largest steam flood project in the Middle East. The field is operated by Occidental Mukhaizna LLC (45%). The other partners are Oman Oil Company S.A.O.C (20%), Liwa Energy (15%), Total E & P Oman (2%) and Partex (Oman) Corporation (1%). IOC is the largest enterprise in the country and the foremost ranked Fortune Global 500 Company in India and has presence in the complete hydrocarbon value chain from downstream refining & marketing, pipeline transportation, Petrochemicals, E&P and Gas Marketing. ...
136 L&T's construction arm bags orders worth Rs 3,376 cr LT 05 Apr, 2018 larsen & toubro larsen & toubro Larsen WatchlistPortfolioMessageSet Alert NSELIVE 05 Apr, 2018 12:15 1,329.75 33.60 (2.59%) Volume 700586 Todays L/H 1,311.001,329.90 More Larsen & Toubro (L&T) today said its construction arm has won orders worth Rs 3,376 crore across business segments. "L&T Construction's power transmission and distribution business has secured orders worth Rs 1,226 crore on both domestic and international market,” the engineering and construction major said in a BSE filing. The company's water and effluent treatment business has received an order worth Rs 1,200 crore, and its building and factories business has won orders in health and automobile sector worth Rs 950 crore. Shares of the company were trading 2.26 percent higher at Rs 1,325.65 apiece on BSE....
137 Lupin to go for restructuring of its domestic business in FY19 LUPIN 05 Apr, 2018 Drugmaker Lupin Ltd plans to focus on chronic therapies, explore in-licensing opportunities and restructure its domestic business in the year ahead, a top company executive said. Lupin, like other drugmakers, has suffered from the rollout of goods and services tax (GST) and price regulations in India and pricing pressures in the US, but hopes to recover and grow in the days ahead, Rajeev Sibal, president of Lupin’s India region formulations said in an interview. “We have seen the market has grown around 9-10% in the past and even in future also, the market will continue to grow. In the next few months, you will see better results as far as stock market is concerned,” said Sibal. The company, which was served several warning letters from the US drug regulator over safety and quality, is attending to issues at its Goa and Indore plants which have received so-called Form 483s from the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA), Sibal said, adding “Whenever the next inspections happen, we are sure that we will come out of it.” Going forward, Lupin will concentrate on its chronic therapies, which brings 57% of its revenue. “Four therapies contribute maximum business. Our objective is that we will consolidate in these four therapies and we will continue to gain our market share in these four therapy areas because these are very important and these are the drivers of the market, lifestyle disease prevalence is going up so obviously these therapies are going to drive the market,” he added. Lupin is focused on chronic therapies like respiratory, cardiology, diabetes and anti-infectives. During 2018-19, Lupin plans to restructure its domestic business and add four new divisions to maintain a product and therapy-specific approach. “We have always grown better than the market, we have improved our ranking in domestic market, we were ranked number nine in 2015; we have improved four rankings. We are also working on other therapy areas like dermatology, urology, oncology as well as ophthalmology because these are also very important areas for us to be in,” added Sibal. Lupin will watch out for more in-licensing opportunities to develop and market products from other drugmakers, in differentiated products and drug delivery systems. “New product pipeline is getting dried up; so in-licensing is the other way,” Sibal said. Big pharmaceutical companies, he said, are collaborating with Indian partners to increase the reach of their products and Lupin is at the forefront as far as those alliances are concerned. “We are the only company which has got 16 alliances of different pharma companies; so when it come to alliances, most of the companies considered Lupin as their preferred partner,” he said. The company already gets 13-14% business from in-licensing, Sibal said. On Wednesday, Lupin shares fell 1.78%, or Rs14.05, to Rs774.50 on the BSE while the benchmark Sensex slumped 1.05%, or 351.56 points, to end the day at 33,019.07....
138 Insolvency auctions set to shake up stodgy domestic steel market OTHER 05 Apr, 2018 It’s an interesting time to be a steel company, unless you are a defaulter. The redrawing of ownership of a large chunk of India’s steel capacity will change the current market structure, affecting how business has been done. New companies will be hungrier for market share and volume growth, spelling trouble for incumbents. So far, Tata Steel Ltd’s share of steel capacity is expected to increase to 14% with the acquisition of Bhushan Steel Ltd, and if it gets Bhushan Power and Steel Ltd also, it will increase to 16%. JSW Steel Ltd’s share will rise to 14% with Monnet Ispat Energy Ltd’s acquisition, though with Aion. This is chiefly consolidation among incumbents. This could change with Essar Steel Ltd. Vedanta group stayed out of the first round, but surprised by bidding in the second. JSW Steel joined the fray in the second round but as an investor in Numetal and Steel Pvt. Ltd. ArcelorMittal is the main challenger to watch. It is the world’s largest steel producer with a capacity of 95.5 million tonnes as of 2016, according to World Steel Association. Getting Essar, which has a 7% share of domestic capacity, will be just what it needs to pry open the market. Essar also has access to iron ore deposits, and if it can buy out those assets separately that’s another line of business for it. Apart from Numetal, which was always in the fray, Vedanta has turned up as a surprise competitor. Buying Essar is a headlong plunge into the steel business for Vedanta, with a sizeable financial commitment, as Essar’s debt as of 29 March was Rs49,213 crore. Both Vedanta and ArcelorMittal have the financial ability to shake up the market. Essar’s capacity is not fully operational, but further investments can make that happen. This is true in other cases too. Working capital constraints are another reason why most distressed steel assets were not fully utilized. Once investments are done and working capital funding is comfortable, steel supply will increase. Higher output could result in domestic prices feeling the heat and exports will increase too. A new competitor would be keen to increase share in the domestic market, which could upset the domestic price situation. This scenario will play out in the coming years. The bigger companies will play for larger stakes but their fight can mean bad news for smaller firms. Already, smaller steel producers are ceding share to the bigger companies. Some of them are in the second list of cases referred for bankruptcy proceedings. In FY18 till February, smaller steel producers’ share of production was 47%, down from 53.5% in FY15. That decline in share will continue, as the larger steel producers will not only hike output but also move to increase their share of the retail market for steel. In recent years, they have been increasing the contribution of branded products to their sales, to improve margins. A higher share of the retail market implies the unorganized sector is ceding share. Larger companies also got a structural advantage, which started during demonetisation and has continued after the goods and services tax was introduced....
139 Jet Airways inks agreement for purchase of aircraft JETAIRWAYS 04 Apr, 2018 Jet Airways has entered into an agreement with The Boeing Company for purchase of 75 Boeing 737 MAX Aircraft. The company had recently reported the Passenger Load Factor (PLF) of 90.4% during the month of February 2018. Jet Airways is India’s premier international airline, which operates flights to India and overseas. The company’s robust domestic India network spans the length and breadth of the country covering metro cities, state capitals and emerging destinations. ...
140 Escorts Expects High Single-Digit Sales Growth In FY19 ESCORTS 04 Apr, 2018 Escorts Ltd., which posted double-digit sales growth in the last few months, may not be able to maintain that pace going forward. The tractor maker is expected to post high single-digit growth next year, its Group Financial Controller Bharat Madan told BloombergQuint in an interview. The company took one price hike this month on rising input costs, said Madan, adding that Escorts might hike prices by 2-3 percent this year. Escorts sold 11,790 units last month, an increase of 66.5 percent from March 2017, aided by festive demand. ...
141 India Spends Record $18 Billion to Develop Roads as Polls Loom OTHER 04 Apr, 2018 India invested a record 1.16 trillion rupees ($18 billion) in the financial year ended March, to develop highways and improve road connectivity across the nation, according to a statement from Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration spent 44 percent more than a year ago on building roads. The government plans to construct 83,677 kilometers (52,005 miles) of roads by 2022 to boost economic growth and employment, under its $106 billion Bharatmala infrastructure development plan. The government is rushing to enact policies that will boost employment opportunities in Asia’s third-largest economy before elections next year. Modi swept to power in May 2014 with the biggest electoral mandate in three decades after promising to create 10 million jobs each year for the country’s burgeoning youth population. “The renewed focus on road building will continue to improve connectivity thereby enhancing the overall efficiency in the economy,” said Shubhada M Rao, chief economist at Yes Bank Ltd. “Focus on road building will also help employment generation.” The administration awarded a total of 17,055 kilometers of orders in year ended March, around 7 percent more from a year ago, according to the statement. Construction of roads last fiscal increased to 9,829 kilometers from 8,231 kilometers a year earlier. The breakneck pace of highway projects has resulted in swelling of order books of most road developers to an all-time high, IIFL Wealth Management analyst Alok Deora said. They “will ensure strong topline” and earnings growth in current and next financial years, Deora said. Road developers such as Dilip Buildcon Ltd., Ashoka Buildcon Ltd., Sadbhav Infrastructure Project Ltd. rallied on Monday. National Highways Authority of India on March 31 said it awarded road projects totaling 1.22 trillion rupees in last financial year. Tendering and projects awarding activity picked after the government announced the ‘Bharatmala’ program, NHAI said in a statement. India constructed 26.9 kilometer of roads daily in the year to March 31....
142 Tata Motors rallies 5% on rise in JLR sales & new product launches TATAMOTORS 04 Apr, 2018 Tata Motors Ltd rallied as much as 4.9 percent in morning trade on Wednesday after Jaguar Land Rover reported 83 percent jump in sales in the last fiscal, and plans to bring 10 new products in India in 2018-19. JLR India completed 2017-18 with a total sales of 4,609 units against 2,514 units in the previous fiscal. Jaguar Land Rover US reversed the declining trend for the past three months. For the month of March 2018, sales grew 10 percent on a YoY basis, better than the industry growth of 6% and ahead of estimates. Land Rover sales grew strongly 38 percent (due to a surge in Velar deliveries). Jaguar sales however declined by 34% YoY to 3260 units The company's new products such as the fifth-generation all-new Land Rover Discovery and the New Range Rover Velar have been received very well in the market. Besides, other models like Jaguar XE, XF and F-PACE and Land Rover Discovery Sport and Range Rover Evoque have also done well during the year, management highlighted. They further added that all the new products lined up for introduction during the year will also help the company maintain sales momentum. However, adding it would be difficult to achieve very high double-digit growth due to increase in prices the following hike in customs duty in the Budget. At 09:50 hours IST, the stock price was quoting at Rs 358.90, up Rs 15.55, or 4.53 percent on the BSE....
143 JSW Steel with Nu Metal submits bids for Essar Steel JSWSTEEL 03 Apr, 2018 JSW Steel in the capacity of an investor joined Nu Metal & Steel in submitting binding bid for Essar Steel, which is under the corporate insolvency resolution process as per the provisions of Insolvency Bankruptcy Code 2016. This step has been taken by the company as part of its growth strategy, while expanding its capacities through brown-field expansions. JSW Steel is a part of the diversified $12 billion JSW Group, which has a presence in Steel, Energy, Infrastructure, Cement, Ventures and Sports ...
144 Motherson Sumi Systems inks deal to acquire Reydel for $201 million MOTHERSUMI 03 Apr, 2018 Motherson Sumi Systems (MSSL), through its step down subsidiary, Samvardhana Motherson Automotive Systems Group B.V. (SMRP BV) has executed the transaction documents for the proposed acquisition of Reydel Automotive Group (Reydel), a privately held portfolio company of Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. (Cerberus) that manufactures interior components and modules for global automotive customers. The purchase price for the transaction is $201 million. This would be the 21st acquisition from the Samvardhana Motherson Group and is intended to further bolster Motherson’s offerings in the automotive Interiors space. The transaction will be discussed with employee representatives and, subject to obtaining customary regulatory and other approvals, could close within the next four to six months. The consideration is expected to be financed using existing cash and banking limits at SMRPBV. Evercore acted as exclusive financial advisor to Cerberus and Reydel, and Linklaters LLP acted as legal advisor. Latham & Watkins acted as legal advisor to Motherson for the transaction and Norton Rose as legal advisor to Motherson for Anti-trust related matters. Motherson Sumi Systems, including its subsidiaries and JVs is one of the leading manufacturer of automotive wiring harnesses, mirrors for passenger cars and a leading supplier of plastic components and modules to the automotive industry. ...
145 JMC Projects bags new orders worth Rs 942 crore JMCPROJECT 03 Apr, 2018 JMC Projects (India) has secured new orders of Rs 942 crore from National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). The company has bagged two orders for construction of flyovers on NH 53 in Maharashtra for Rs 456 crore and one more order for four-laning of Madurai-Chettikulam section of NH 785 in Tamil Nadu on EPC basis for Rs 486 crore. JMC, a subsidiary of Kalpataru Power Transmission, is India’s one of the leading contracting company. The company is mainly engaged in the construction of industrial and residential buildings and also power and infrastructure development projects. ...
146 Tata Steel to pay ? 35,200 cr cash for Bhushan Steel TATASTEEL 03 Apr, 2018 Tata Steel has offered ? 35,200 crore in cash and conversion of the remaining debt of about ? 27,000 crore into equity to take over Bhushan Steel, the counsel for the Committee of Creditors (CoC) informed NCLT today. The creditors would get 12.27 per cent equity in Bhushan Steel, said senior advocate Ravi Kadam to the Principal bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) here. “Tata Steel is the highest bidder (H1) offering an upfront payment of ?35,200 crore. Remaining debt would be converted into equity,” he said. Kadam further said: “Financial creditors would get 12.27 per cent of equity of the corporate debtor (Bhushan Steel) subject to SEBI approval.” As of February 1 this year Bhushan Steel had a total debt of ? 57,160 crore. The company has a financial debt of ? 56,051 crore and operational debt of ? 1,050 crore, he added. He further informed that Bhushan Steel has a liquidation value of ?14,541 crore. Tata has also offered ? 1,200 crore to its operational creditors depending on the criticality to run the company....
147 Lupin’s Goa plant clears UK MHRA audit LUPIN 03 Apr, 2018 Lupin has announced that its Goa facility has cleared the UK MHRA audit without any critical or major observation. This comes a day after Lupin’s Pithampur unit II completed the Health Canada audit successfully. USFDA had issued a warning letter in November 2017 at the same Goa unit. Lupin has now reported two successful audits by two different global drug regulators within two days. The stock, owing to the regulatory issues and challenges in the US business, had reached a 52-week low of Rs727 on March 26, 2018. The sentiment has improved with 8% gains from its 52-week lows. The warning letter on the Pithampur and Goa units remains a key hurdle in the re-rating of the stock. The warning letter was issued on account of repeated OOS related observations in both the plants. Lupin Ltd is currently trading at Rs788.80 up by Rs13.4 or 1.73% from its previous closing of Rs775.40 on the BSE....
148 Suven Life gets product patent from Canada SUVEN 03 Apr, 2018 Suven Life Sciences today said that it has been granted a product patent by Canada corresponding to New Chemical Entities (NCEs) for the treatment of disorders associated with neurodegenerative diseases. The patents are valid till 2033, the company said in a BSE filing. "We are very pleased by the grant of these patents to Suven for our pipeline of molecules in the CNS arena, which are being developed for cognitive disorders with high unmet medical need with a huge market potential globally," Suven Life CEO Venkat Jasti said. The granted claims of the patents are being developed as therapeutic agents and are useful in the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer's disease, attention deficient hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Huntingtons disease, Parkinson's and Schizophrenia....
149 Bharat Electronics achieves landmark turnover of over Rs 10,000 crore BEL 02 Apr, 2018 Bharat Electronics (BEL) has achieved the landmark turnover of more than Rs 10,000 crore (Provisional & Unaudited) during FY 2017-18, sustaining the double digit growth over the previous year's turnover of Rs 8825 crore. Some of the flagship projects executed include Integrated Air Command & Control System (IACCS), Weapon Locating Radar (WLR), Hand Held Thermal Imager (HHTI), Akash Weapon Systems (Army), Naval Fire Control System etc. BEL is a multi-product, multi-technology, multi-unit conglomerate with over 350 products in the areas of military communication, radars, naval systems, C4I systems, weapon systems, homeland security, telecom & broadcast systems, electronic warfare, tank electronics, electro-optics, professional electronic components and solar photovoltaic systems. ...
150 IOC To Double Refining Capacity With Rs 1.4 Lakh Crore Investment IOC 02 Apr, 2018 India's biggest oil refiner Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. plans to invest about Rs 1.4 lakh crore to nearly double its oil refining capacity to 150 million tonnes and boost petrochemical production by 2030. While IOC is expanding refining capacity to meet fuel demand that’s expected to double by 2040, it does not want to remain “a refining company alone and is venturing into petrochemicals and alternative fuels as well,” company's Director (Refineries) B V Rama Gopal told reporters in New Delhi. IOC is investing Rs 16,628 crore to upgrade refineries to produce Euro-VI emission norm compliant petrol and diesel as against Euro-IV fuel that was being produced now. This investment cycle would be completed by 2020, Rama Gopal said. The company is also investing Rs 15,600 crore to expand petrochemical projects, and another Rs 74,600 crore for raising capacity of its existing refineries. Rama Gopal said projects worth Rs 36,500 crore are in the pipeline but haven't been approved by the company board yet. These include expansion of its recently-commissioned 15-MTPA Paradip refinery in Odisha to 18 MTPA, and the expansion of its Bongaigaon unit. India's current refining capacity of 247.6 MTPA exceeds consumption. But with demand growing at a compounded annual growth rate of 3.5-4 percent, it will need to add more capacity to meet the rising fuel needs. The International Energy Agency expects India’s fuel demand to reach 450-492 MTPA by 2040. IOC Capacity Expansion Plans Panipat refinery in Haryana: 25 MTPA from 15 MTPA currently Koyali refinery in Gujarat: 18 MTPA from 13.7 MTPA currently Barauni refinery in Bihar: Additional 3 MTPA Mathura refinery in Uttar Pradesh: Additional 1.2 MTPA Rama Gopal said IOC is also looking at adding a 9 MTPA capacity to its subsidiary Chennai Petroleum. He added that IOC, Bharat Petroleum, and Hindustan Petroleum are together setting up a new 60 MPTA refinery on the west coast in Maharashtra....
151 Reliance Extends Jio Prime Membership For One Year At No Extra Cost RELIANCE 02 Apr, 2018 Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. said that it will allow existing Jio Prime users to extend their membership for one more year without paying for it, as India’s youngest telecom operator looks to maintain its pace of growth. “All Jio Prime members who have subscribed to the exclusive membership benefits till March 31 will get another year of complimentary Prime benefits at no additional fee,” India's third-largest telecom operator announced in a press statement. The offer will be for a limited period, the company added, without specifying the time frame. New Jio users will be able to avail Jio Prime membership, which offers additional data at same prices compared to non-Prime members, for an unchanged annual fee of Rs 99. The subscription service, rolled out in February 2017, has garnered over 17.5 crore members, the company added. Reliance Jio added close to 83 lakh subscribers in January, according to the latest data provided by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. That compares with the combined addition of 39 lakh by Bharti Airtel Ltd., Idea Cellular Ltd. and Vodafone India Ltd. Jio continues to offer lower tariffs, having cut its prices twice in January. Its JioPhone too is helping the operator bring more feature phone subscribers on board as it continues to disrupt the world’s second largest telecom market with its aggressive pricing. That reflected in the performance of the overall industry. The telecom sector lost more than 1.5 crore subscribers as the number of multi-sim users fell. That’s due to consolidation among service providers and cheap bundled plans. Jio’s subscriber addition, on the other hand, rose for the second consecutive month after falling in November. Reliance Jio’s customer market share also increased the most in January—90 basis points compared with 30 to 45 basis points for its rivals. Since Reliance Jio’s launch, only Vodafone India’s customer market share has declined, while Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular have managed to protect their share. Revenue Impact The Prime membership fees boosted Jio’s average revenue per user in the last two quarters and its share in the total revenue also increased. Moreover, the telecom operator is expected to report higher revenue in the fourth quarter of the current financial year as it accounts for a bigger chunk of the Prime membership fee. The revenue coming in from a subscriber -- who availed the membership in April 2017 -- was distributed equally in the four quarters of the year. However, a subscriber who joined in the fourth quarter of financial year 2018 will see the entire Rs 84 -- adjusted for GST -- being accounted as revenue in March ended quarter. This will lift company’s revenue in the fourth quarter of this year and could pull down the revenue in the first quarter of next as the company will not see any Prime membership revenue coming from old customers....
152 GAIL arm to invest Rs 3,000 cr in Dabhol terminal GAIL 02 Apr, 2018 The newly-created arm of state-run gas major Gail India, Konkan LNG, will pump in around Rs 3,000 crore to double the capacity at its liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal at Dabhol in the Konkan region of Maharashtra to 10 million tonne over the next three years. Konkan LNG, a 100 per cent subsidiary of GAIL, had on March 30 received the first 1.2 lakh tonne shipment of the 5.8-mt LNG contracted from the first-ever long-term agreement with the US signed way back in 2011 and 2013. “We will be investing around Rs 3,000 crore in Dabhol terminal to increase its capacity to 10 million tonne from the present 5 mt, which is also underutilised now due to the terminal not being an all-weather facility. “So, to make the Dabhol terminal an all-season facility, first we will invest around Rs 700 crore to complete the abandoned and semi-finished breakwater. Rest of the investment will go into capacity expansion,” GAIL chairman and managing director BC Tripathi said. GAIL created Konkan LNG recently after demerging it from Ratnagiri Gas & Power, which is a three-way joint venture it has with NTPC and Maharashtra SEB. The JV was created to run Dabhol Power which was abandoned by Enron Corporation early 2000 following its global bankruptcy. The entire project will take around three years to complete, and will be executed by Konkan LNG, Tripathi said, adding the work on the breakwater should be begin shortly. Currently the terminal can operate only about eight months in a year due to not having a breakwater. “We’ve finalised the tender for the breakwater which will be floated very soon and hope to begin work before the monsoons at the earliest or soon after the monsoons,” petroleum and natural gas minister Dharmendra Pradhan said here on Friday receiving the first shipment of 1.2 lakh tonne LNG from the US. GAIL commissioned the Dabhol terminal in 2013 and the US vessel was the 78th berthing, Tripathi said. The company will get 22-24 shipments per annum till the breakwater is built. Once that is done the annual intake will be 80-90 ships. It had in 2011 and 2013 entered into two contracts of 20 years each, to lift 5.8 mt of LNG from the US, which is valued at around USD 32 billion. The gas will come the Dominion Cove Point project in Maryland (signed in 2011) and the Sabine Pass project in Louisiana (agreement signed 2013) from the US. The under-construction breakwater at the Dabhol terminal, was created in FY07 by the original Dabhol power plant promoter Enron Corporation which went bankrupt following which it abandoned the 1,200-mw power plant. The minister had claimed that the country could negotiate “a very competitive price from the US which offers one of the best prices of LNG,” without disclosing the average price of the maiden shipment. “Pricing is a commercial matter that cannot be publicly discussed. All I can assure you is that we have managed one of the best prices which should help the end-consumers,” he told PTI, adding industrial and residential customers in Karnataka, Maharashtra and Gujarat. But it can be noted that when the first shipment was loaded, the crude was trading over USD 81 a barrel, and on the day it arrived it was ruling under USD 70 a barrel. Crude and LNG prices are linked. Pradhan also said the beginning of the oil and gas shipments from the US will boost Indo-US trade and has the potential to raise it by USD 2-3 billion annually, considering massive spike in energy demand, making the country third largest in the world. Indo-US trade has been rising 11.4 per cent on average annually since 2000 when it had stood at a USD 20 billion and crossed USD 126 billion in 2017. It can be noted that Asia is the largest consumer of LNG in the world with around 70 per cent of consumption led by Japan, China and India. “Once this pipeline delivery begins, this will connect the state-run gas major’s Kochi-Kuttanad- Mangalore-Bengaluru pipeline,” GAIL said. Describing the arrival of the first shipment and the conclusion of the long-term contract with the US-based Cheniere Inc as “a new beginning in the Indo-US energy partnership and trade,” Pradhan said LNG supplies is linked to the Henry Hub index contract and also “will help achieve the vision of moving towards a gas-based economy“. The charter-hired vessel MV Meridian Spirit arrived at the Dabhol facility on March 30 after sailing for 24 days....
153 Lupin’s Pithampur Unit gets clearance from Health Canada LUPIN 02 Apr, 2018 Lupin has received clearance from Health Canada for its Pithampur Unit. The company announced successful facility review carried out by Health Canada for its Pithampur Unit 2 (Indore) manufacturing facility. Following the review, Health Canada has maintained the compliant rating for Unit 2 at Pithampur (Indore) and has issued a revised ‘Establishment License’. Lupin is an innovation led transnational pharmaceutical company developing and delivering a wide range of branded & generic formulations, biotechnology products and APIs globally. ...
154 BEML delivers ultra modern metro train to Kolkata Metro BEML 02 Apr, 2018 BEML has delivered the first set of six car metro train unit to Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation (KMRCL). BEML won this contract for supply of 84 nos. standard gauge metro cars (14 trains) to KMRCL East-West Metro Line against international competitive bidding. The total contract value is around Rs 900 crore. BEML is the first Indian company supplying indigenously developed six car metro train with Advanced Communication Based Train Control (CBTC) system. The six coach rakes comprise of two Driving Motor Cars (DMC) at either end, LED lightings for energy conservation and latest train protection/control systems. The carrying capacity of each rake is 2068 passengers and with a maximum operation speed capability of 80 kmph. The state-of-the-art metro trains are indigenously designed, developed and manufactured by BEML, truly realising the motive of 'Design in India' and 'Skill India' initiatives of the Government. BEML a leading mining and construction equipment manufacturer has designed and developed indigenously over 40 products through its R&D, and are not only working in India but also in 65 countries around the world ...
155 Ashok Leyland’s price hike well timed, others may follow to offset cost pressures ASHOKLEY 28 Mar, 2018 On Tuesday, commercial vehicle manufacturer Ashok Leyland Ltd announced a minimum 2% price hike across all categories with effect from 1 April 2018. Will others follow suit? Most likely, yes. Here are the reasons why: Rising input costs, thanks to higher metal and rubber prices over the last year, will hurt profitability. Add to that the cost of mandatory compliance with the AIS (Automotive Industry Standards) 140 regulations that would require automakers to invest in vehicle tracking and camera surveillance systems. And, what better time to pass on cost pressures than now, when the demand for commercial vehicles is skyrocketing. Growth rates are surpassing that of all other vehicle segments. The cyclical medium and heavy commercial vehicle (M&HCV) segment posted a 32% annual growth in fiscal year 2017 (FY17) after contracting by 1% in the previous year. Analysts estimate a robust 17-18% growth in FY18 too after which it might taper a bit as the base becomes higher. With the goods and services tax in place, the unorganized small truck operators are expected to give way to organized logistics service providers. This would drive demand from fleet owners. Further, the truck scrappage policy that is reckoned to be round the corner is likely to spur demand. The industry expects incentives for those who discard aged trucks and purchase new ones. In other words, Ashok Leyland’s move to hike prices is well timed. According to Bharat Gianani, analyst at Sharekhan Ltd: “When a formidable manufacturer (Ashok Leyland is the No. 2 commercial vehicle maker) hikes prices due to cost increases, others tend to follow because cost pressures tend to be an industry phenomenon.” Meanwhile, competition in both M&HCV and light commercial vehicles is high. This is reflected in the discounts still prevalent in these segments. While Ashok Leyland has increased its hold in the market by steadily gaining share to its current 33%, Tata Motors Ltd has ceded the phenomenal lead it had with nearly two-thirds share of the market about five years ago. Besides, firms like Eicher Motors Ltd and Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd are also giving tough competition to the two leaders. That said, strong demand and ability to hike prices and pass on cost pressures has aided profitability. Ashok Leyland’s operating margin improved from 7% to 11% and that of Tata Motors from an operating loss to 8% margin over the last three quarters. The price hikes in the wake of continuing discounts will therefore help improve profitability at least as long as the upturn in the commercial vehicles cycle lasts....
156 Fortis Healthcare To Demerge Hospitals Business Into Manipal Hospitals FORTIS 28 Mar, 2018 Fortis Healthcare Ltd. will demerge its hospitals business into TPG-backed Manipal Hospitals and divest management control of its diagnostics business to the same entity in a two-step deal. The resultant entity Manipal Hospitals will automatically list on the Indian exchanges and become the largest hospital services provider in the country by revenue, Fortis Healthcare said in an exchange filing today. Every shareholder of Fortis Healthcare will receive 10.83 shares in Manipal Hospitals – the resultant combined hospitals business – for every 100 shares held. In the second part of the transaction, Manipal Hospital will buy 50.9 percent stake in SRL Diagnostics from Fortis Healthcare and other private equity investors of SRL. This includes Manipal Hospitals buying 20 percent stake from Fortis Healthcare for Rs 720 crore and an additional 30.9 percent stake from private equity investors, according to the exchange filing. After the completion of the transaction, SRL will become a subsidiary of Manipal Hospitals and Fortis Healthcare will be an investment holding company with about 36.6 percent stake in it. The remaining 12.5 percent stake in SRL will be held by existing investors, including management. Bloomberg had reported the deal on Monday. The demerger comes in the wake of Fortis Healthcare founders Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh battling allegations of financial irregularities. India’s fraud watchdog and stock market regulator are both investigating the company after the Singh brothers allegedly siphoned Rs 500 crore from the company with board approval, Bloomberg reported earlier. As part of the proposed transaction, Manipal Hospitals promoters Ranjan Pai and TPG will invest Rs 3,900 crore into Manipal Hospitals. The funds will be utilised by Manipal Hospitals to finance the acquisition of 50.9 percent stake in SRL. In addition, the investment will support the proposed acquisition of hospital assets owned by the Singapore-listed RHT Health Trust and the growth of the hospitals and the diagnostics businesses. The deal is value accretive for all stakeholders, Fortis founders Shivinder Singh and Malvinder Singh said in a press statement today. “The demerger of Fortis’ Hospital business into Manipal Hospitals, promoted by Dr. Ranjan Pai and backed by TPG, will unlock significant value for all stakeholders and will further accelerate and expand access to high quality healthcare services in India.” Earlier this month, Yes Bank Ltd. had also acquired a 17.3 percent stake in Fortis invoking a pledge that was triggered after the promoter group defaulted on loans provided by the Mumbai-based private bank. The acquisition had made the private lender the biggest shareholder in the beleaguered hospital chain....
157 Lupin, Taro Pharma gets final approval for Clobetasol Propionate Spray LUPIN 28 Mar, 2018 Lupin has announced that it has received final USFDA approval for Clobetasol Propionate Spray, 0.05%. This is a generic version of Clobex Spray, 0.05%, of Galderma Laboratories. In the morning, Glenmark too had announced that it has received USFDA approval for the same product. From the USFDA website, we also understand that Sun Pharma Subsidiary Taro has also received approval for the same spray. According to IQVIATM data, the Clobex Spray 0.05% had annual sales of ~$30.5mn for the 12 month ended January 2018. In the Clobex spray 0.05%, apart from Lupin, and Taro, there are three more generic players including two Indian companies Zyduc Pharma and Glenmark. Lupin has filed this product from Indore Unit III. We do not expect significant contribution from this drug due to its small size. The approval spree in Clobex shows USFDA's efficiency in GDUFA II regime and continued pricing pressure in US market....
158 Glenmark receives ANDA approval for Clobetasol Propionate Spray GLENMARK 27 Mar, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc., USA (Glenmark) has been granted final approval by the United States Food & Drug Administration (US FDA) for Clobetasol Propionate Spray, 0.05%, the generic version of Clobex Spray, 0.05%, of Galderma Laboratories, L.P. This product will be manufactured at Glenmark’s Baddi plant in India. According to IQVIA sales data for the 12 month period ending January 2018, the Clobex Spray, 0.05% market achieved annual sales of approximately $30.5 million. Glenmark’s current portfolio consists of 131 products authorized for distribution in the US marketplace and 63 ANDA’s pending approval with the US FDA. In addition to these internal filings, Glenmark continues to identify and explore external development partnerships to supplement and accelerate the growth of its existing pipeline and portfolio. ...
159 Reliance Industries inks $1 billion deal to combine JioMusic with Saavn RELIANCE 24 Mar, 2018 Reliance Industries has inked a deal to combine over-the-top (OTT) music platform Saavn with its own digital music service JioMusic in a transaction worth over USD 1 billion, the oil-to-telecom behemoth said in a statement on Friday. JioMusic’s implied valuation for the transaction was USD 670 million, RIL said. The company will invest an additional USD 100 million towards making the combined platform one of the largest music streaming services in the world. Of the USD 100 million, USD 20 million will be invested upfront, the company said, adding that the three co-founders of Saavn – Rishi Malhotra, Paramdeep Singh, and Vinodh Bhat – will continue in their respective leadership roles at the combined entity. The investments will be made in the form of rupee-equivalents of the amounts mentioned above. In addition to this deal, Reliance Industries will also acquire a part of the stake held by Saavn’s existing shareholders for a sum of USD 104 million. Saavn’s shareholders, including Tiger Global Management, Liberty Media, and Bertelsmann, will continue holding the remainder of their stake. “We are delighted to announce this partnership with Saavn, and believe that their highly experienced management team will be instrumental in expanding Jio-Saavn to an extensive user base, thereby strengthening our leadership position in the Indian streaming market,” said Akash Ambani, Director, Reliance Jio. At the moment, JioMusic has been India’s fastest growing music streaming application for over 60 consecutive weeks. It sources content from all major Indian and international labels and currently has over 16 million high definition songs across 20 languages on its platform. On its part, Saavn brings to the table the unique distinction of being the only streaming service to feature on lists of top-grossing apps in numerous markets such as India, UK, Canada, United States, UAE, and Singapore, among others. The combined entity will have both Saavn’s streaming media expertise and Jio’s digital ecosystem to leverage. It will aim at benefitting all the stakeholders involved – users, music labels, artists, and advertisers – Reliance Industries said in the statement....
160 L&T Technology Services bags multi-million dollar ER&D project LT 23 Mar, 2018 Germany’s Covestro, a world-leading manufacturer of high-tech polymer materials, has chosen L&T Technology Services (LTTS) to implement digitalization based Engineering Programs across Covestro’s global locations. L&T Technology Services, a global leading pure play ER&D services company, has been awarded a multi-million dollar contract by Covestro to execute these engineering transformational programs. Within this program, L&T Technology Services has been selected as the engineering partner to drive digital transformation across Covestro’s 8 global locations, especially in the area of data migration. L&T Technology Services is a listed subsidiary of Larsen & Toubro focused on Engineering and R&D (ER&D) services. ...
161 Mahindra And Ford Will Jointly Develop Electric Cars, SUVs For India M&M 23 Mar, 2018 India’s largest sports utility vehicle maker Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. will partner with the Indian unit of Ford Motor Company to develop smaller SUVs, electric cars and other in-vehicle technologies. M&M and Ford signed five memorandums of understanding to collaborate on product development of compact sports utility vehicles, battery-powered vehicles and connected car solutions in India and other emerging markets, according to a stock exchange filing. The non-binding MoUs are aimed to further strengthen the strategic alliance in India between the two automakers, the filing added. The two will use M&M’s existing platform to build a mid-size SUV which will be sold independently by both companies as separate brands. The automakers also agreed to evaluate co-developing an electric vehicle and sharing powertrain portfolios. This will involve M&M supplying their powertrains – the main component of a car that transfers power from an engine to the wheel – to Ford's product range. Both teams are working together on joint development areas in keeping with industry requirements and leveraging mutual strengths. Pawan Goenka, Managing Director, M&M The teams will collaborate for at least three years. This is an extension of a strategic alliance between the two that was announced in September 2017. The automakers had agreed to co-operate on mobility programs, connected vehicle projects, product development, distribution in India, improving Ford's reach within the country and Mahindra's reach in global markets....
162 Sun Pharma: One down, Halol to go SUNPHARMA 23 Mar, 2018 In every conference call held in fiscal year 2018 (FY18) after Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd’s quarterly result, the launch of tildrakizumab was a key point discussed. The Halol plant’s non-compliant regulatory status was another. It’s a bit of a surprise then that its shares yawned at the announcement that the firm got a novel drug approval for Ilumya, the brand name for tildrakizumab. This could be a case of the news already in the price but this was by no means a slam dunk, as seen from the conversations in these calls. There is the possibility that the company’s continuously flagging US sales growth and inability to clear the Halol hurdle has made investors circumspect, even in the face of positive news. At Halol, new generic approvals have stopped as even a recent inspection of the plant saw observations regarding deficiencies. Ilumya is good news in that light, becoming a key contributor to US revenues eventually. This drug was licensed by Sun Pharma from Merck and Co. in 2014, by paying an initial sum of $80 million and while Merck did the work and filings to bring it to market, Sun Pharma has borne all costs. It has worldwide rights for this product and has out-licensed it for Europe. Sun Pharma will pay Merck milestone-related amounts (the approval itself will trigger a payment) and then royalty on sales that will range from mid-single digit through teen percentage rates on sales. Sun Pharma deserves a pat for getting its licensing candidate right, which targets a large market opportunity. In recent calls, Sun Pharma’s management has said its marketing organization for Ilumya is in place, and some field force recruitments are already done. That means related investments and expenses, to an extent, are already in its expenditure. Initially, Merck will supply the product and later Sun Pharma will shift production to a third-party facility. Sun Pharma’s management had said that the investment phase for Ilumya—where the company will spend more than it will sell—may last for 1.5-2 years. In the US, the market for psoriasis drugs is a sizeable one. For instance, Janssen Biotech Inc.’s Stelara earned $4 billion in global revenues in 2017. Janssen also launched a product Tremfya, which is in the same sub-category of IL-23 products, as Sun Pharma’s Ilumya. There are some concerns too, on whether too many products are crowding this market, whether Tremfya will be preferred over llumya, and also positive trial data for a new product risankizumab (being developed by AbbVie Inc.). In response to a question that asked the revenue potential from speciality products, Sun Pharma’s managing director Dilip Shanghvi said that IL-23 and IL-17 (different sub-categories of immunology products targeting diseases such as psoriasis) are being sold by very large companies with more experience in speciality biologics than Sun Pharma. While the company may not have the same success the large firms may have (in turning it into a blockbuster drug), Shanghvi said it has a good product and sees no reason to not try and match those revenues. He also clarified that the current spend is not geared to handle that kind of volume and upside but Sun Pharma will take that decision closer to market. After its March quarter results, the management will give a guidance for FY19, which should factor in the impact of Ilumya’s launch. Sun Pharma will probably share some details on its plans for the product and its future. Investors are keeping their hopes low. Whether they are surprised by the management’s guidance remains to be seen. The company has passed a key near-term milestone with the Ilumya approval. Sun Pharma’s investors seem to be fixated more on its ability to get the Halol facility compliant for them to change their cautious view....
163 Sun Pharma receives USFDA approval for ILUMYA SUNPHARMA 22 Mar, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries has received US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) approval for ILUMYA (tildrakizumab-asmn) used for the treatment of adults with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis who are candidates for systemic therapy or phototherapy. The USFDA approval of ILUMYA for the treatment of adults with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis was supported by data from the pivotal Phase-3 reSURFACE clinical development program. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
164 JSW Steel to join race for Essar Steel as lenders seek fresh bids JSWSTEEL 22 Mar, 2018 The race to acquire Essar Steel will start all over again with new players, including JSW Steel, evincing interest in bidding for the company. This follows a decision by the Committee of Creditors of Essar Steel to reject the bids placed by Numetal (backed by Russia’s largest bank VTB) and ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steel company, on grounds that their proposals did not comply with the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code. At a meeting held here on Wednesday, the creditors decided to call for fresh bids, which could further delay the entire process of finding a suitor for the company. Essar Steel has defaulted on a ?48,000-crore loan. Both Numetal and ArcelorMittal can participate in the rebidding after addressing the concerns raised by the lenders. Numetal moves NCLT Numetal has filed an application before the NCLT, Ahmedabad, stressing that it would, if need be, ease out Rewant Ruia, son of Essar promoter Ravi Ruia, from the consortium that has placed a bid for Essar Steel. Rewant’s presence in Numetal as a shareholder was the primary reason for the lenders to reject the bid. Numetal said that full facts related to its eligibility have not been appropriately assessed. “Accordingly, all necessary facts for determining the eligibility of Numetal have been placed before the NCLT for an objective assessment,” it said. ArcelorMittal said it has not received any official communication from the creditors on its bid being rejected. It partnered Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp to bid for Essar Steel but the company’s earlier stake in debt-laden Uttam Galva proved to be a spoiler. Creditors to meet tomorrow Sources said the creditors will meet on Friday and decide on whether to restrict fresh bidding to companies that had earlier submitted an Expression of Interest but did not place financial bids or open it up to all interested parties. It is unlikely that Tata Steel and Vedanta will rejoin the bidding though they had evinced interest earlier. While Tata Steel has acquired Bhushan Steel, Vedanta is the top bidder for Electrosteel, and, therefore, the two may not have the appetite for more assets. JSW Steel is yet to taste success in the ongoing asset-sale process and will join the race for Essar on its own or through a tie-up with PEs that had expressed interest earlier....
165 Tata Steel Is The Most Attractive Bet Among Peers TATASTEEL 22 Mar, 2018 Tata Steel Ltd. has become the most attractive bet among peers after metal stocks declined anywhere between 7 percent and 17 percent last month on falling prices in China, the world’s largest steel producer. Nearly 25 of the 30 analysts tracked by Bloomberg currently have a ‘buy’ rating on the stock, with an implied potential upside of 39 percent – the highest in the ferrous pack. Moreover, the stock is available at relatively cheaper valuation compared with others. Broking and research firm Macquire said Tata Steel’s robust domestic fundamentals make it a good bet. The risk associated with its aggressive bidding for Bhushan Steel Ltd. and Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd. seems to be well priced in the current market value of the stock, the brokerage said. ...
166 RCom gets bondholders' yes to sell assets to Jio for trimming debt RCOM 22 Mar, 2018 Reliance Communications has got approval from investors holding $300 million worth of outstanding bonds for sale of wireless assets to Reliance Jio, and also that of its real estate assets, to pare its debt, news which drove the telco’s stock nearly 9% higher. Holders have also accepted part pre-payment of the bonds that were due to mature in 2020, the company said in a notice to stock exchanges Wednesday. It added that the development was a significant milestone in relation to the asset monetization plan which will facilitate the group’s zero write-off debt resolution plan that the Anil Ambani-owned carrier announced in October 2017. “The holders of the company’s US $300 million Bonds, at their meeting held on 20 March 2018 in London, have approved with overwhelming majority the sale of assets to Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited and also monetization of other real estate assets,” the company said. “The Bondholders also approved release of their security on the company’s assets and to accept part prepayment of their outstanding Bonds,” it added. The bonds were issued in May 2015 at 6.5% interest and were to mature in 2020. As of February, they were trading in the range of 32% to 37% discount. RCom’s shares jumped 8.9% to close at Rs 25.20 on the Bombay Stock Exchange on Wednesday. The asset monetization process though is getting delayed after an arbitration court barred the sale without its permission, on a plea of telecom equipment maker Ericsson against RComBSE -3.57 % over dues worth over Rs1,000 crore. RCom had appealed in the Bombay High Court, which declined to give any relief, after which the company moved the Supreme Court, which will hear the matter on Thursday. The State Bank of India-led lenders forum overlooking the asset monetisation of RCom has also moved th .. RCom’s debt stood at more than Rs 45,000 crore and the promoters managed to avoid the possibility of ceding control to banks under a strategic debt restructuring programme late January, when they approved the sale of assets to Jio for around Rs 25,000 crore, which would be used to pay lenders on a pro-rata basis. Besides the sale of spectrum, tower, optical fibre network and other wireless infrastructure, to Reliance Jio, RCom plans to sell real estate assets including 125 acres of the Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City (DAKC) campus, Navi Mumbai - with approximately 20 million square feet of development space – to further pare debt by Rs 7,000 crore. “The company is also in discussions with a global strategic partner for a further debt reduction which will occur upon a stake sale process that is already underway,” it said. After these exercises, the company will have a remaining debt of Rs 7,000 crore, and the remaining businesses focused on enterprise and data center services, will generate total revenues of Rs 5,400 crore and Rs 6,800 crore, between fiscals 2018 and 2022, respectively. It added that RCom was considering two instruments having a ‘de minimis interest rate’, with majority having a long-dated maturity repayable on completion of various milestones, including the ongoing stake sale. The Anil Ambani-owned carrier that has shut down voice services since December 2017, said that discussions with noteholders with respect to restructuring terms were ongoing, but there has been no change in the interest rate or maturity date of the bonds under the agreed resolutions. The approvals allow RCom to modify certain conditions in the bonds regarding restricted subsidiaries and release of collateral, appoint Madison Pacific Trust Limited as the trustee replacing Standard Chartered and permit the mandatory partial redemption of the bonds, at par, pro rata, on three separate payment dates with proceeds stemming from the Reliance Jio sale and monetization of other real estate assets. The approvals allow RCom to modify certain conditions in the bonds regarding restricted subsidiaries and release of collateral, appoint Madison Pacific Trust Limited as the trustee replacing Standard Chartered and permit the mandatory partial redemption of the bonds, at par, pro rata, on three separate payment dates with proceeds stemming from the Reliance Jio sale and monetization of other real estate assets. The company added that the release of any collateral under the bonds, will be conditional upon receipt of 90% of the consideration payable with respect to such collateral pursuant to the sale of assets to Reliance Jio. Post the sale of assets to Jio, the first partial redemption of bonds is slated to happen by June 15 this year, while the second partial redemption is expected by June 30. The third partial redemption will take place seven business days following the escrow hold back date, the company said. RCom said it will hold a meeting with bondholders to discuss the terms of restructuring on or before April 15 and aims to complete the restructuring of the bonds by August 31. The restructuring process will include accrued and unpaid interest, and the condition that the bond holders are at par with other secured creditors. It will also include an undertaking to pay a cash fee equivalent to 1% of the principal amount outstanding under the bonds to the ad-hoc committee on or before June 30. ...
167 Ashok Leyland bags order worth Rs 321 crore from IRT ASHOKLEY 21 Mar, 2018 Ashok Leyland has bagged an order from the Institute of Road Transport (IRT), Tamil Nadu for supply of 2000 Passenger Chassis and 100 of Fully built Small Buses to various STUs in the state of Tamil Nadu. The order size is about Rs 321 crore. This order is scheduled to be supplied during the first half of 2018-19. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
168 Suzlon designs, produces India’s longest wind turbine blade SUZLON 21 Mar, 2018 Suzlon Group has designed and manufactured India’s longest wind turbine blade at its Padubidri Rotor Blade Unit. The advanced blade (SB 63) measures 63 meters in length and has been specifically developed for Suzlon’s new S128 wind turbine family with a rotor diameter of 128 meters, 1.5 times taller than the India Gate monument in terms of height. The S128 series offers around 33% more swept area (12,860 m2) and are expected to deliver around 32% more energy generation compared to the S111. Suzlon Group is one of the leading renewable energy solutions provider in the world with an international presence across 18 countries in Asia, Australia, Europe, Africa and Americas. ...
169 Newgen Software Technologies’ arm unveils MME solution for US Health Plans NEWGEN 21 Mar, 2018 Newgen Software Technologies’ wholly owned subsidiary - Newgen Software Inc., has unveiled Mobile Medicare Enrolment (MME) solution for the US Health Plans. Built on a robust platform, Newgen Enterprise Mobility Framework (NEMF), the suite allows Health Plans to eliminate paper-based enrollments and reduce operational costs significantly. NEMF facilitates real-time capture and processing of enrolment applications and member information, reducing application processing time per enrollee. By leveraging the solution, Health Plans can efficiently manage their processes from enrolment, reconciliation to servicing. Newgen Software Technologies is a software products company offering a platform that enables organisations to develop applications addressing their strategic business needs. ...
170 IOC, BPCL May Have To Raise Debt If They Buy Government’s Stake In GAIL GAIL 21 Mar, 2018 Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. and Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd. will have to borrow funds if the state-owned refiners and marketers acquire the government’s stake in GAIL (India) Ltd., the nation’s largest gas marketing and transportation company. India’s top two state-owned refiners could equally buy the government’s holding, newswire PTI reported, quoting unnamed people. The government’s 54 percent stake in GAIL is valued at close to Rs 40,000 crore. IOCL and BPCL, however, are nearly Rs 23,000 crore short as the two, according to their September filings, had Rs 7,400 crore and Rs 9,500 crore cash, respectively. This cash balance would have further reduced as both the companies had declared hefty dividends in the month of February. IOCL had declared a dividend of Rs 19 per share, while BPCL declared a dividend of Rs 14 per share. Also, in the past none of the companies in the last seven years ever had cash and cash equivalents of more than Rs 20,000 crore. RS Sharma, former chairman and managing director of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd., isn’t sure how the two companies will benefit from such a deal. “Buying less than 50 percent stake in GAIL won’t benefit IOCL or BPCL in any way as it will not become subsidiary of either of them. GAIL will just remain as portfolio investment in their books. RS Sharma, Former CMD, ONGC The government stands to gain though. The possible deal, similar to ONGC’s acquisition of its holding in Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd., could help it meet its divestment target set at Rs 80,00 crore for the financial year starting April. Last year, the government sold its 51.11 percent stake in HPCL to ONGC for Rs 36,915 crore, helping it exceed divestment target first time in 14 years. Possible Debt Implications While buying government's stake could add more debt on the books of IOC and BPCL, their leverage ratio would still be below the levels considered high by market. IOCL and BPCL had a total debt of close to Rs 32,000 crore and Rs 18,000 crore, respectively, as of December 2017. IOC and BPCL also own stakes in multiple listed entities which they could consider to fund the acquisition. Their holdings in various listed companies is valued at close to Rs 26,000 crore and Rs 9,500 crore, respectively. ...
171 Ashok Leyland to supply 50 e-buses for Ahmedabad’s BRT corridor ASHOKLEY 20 Mar, 2018 G BALACHANDAR Truck and bus maker Ashok Leyland has bagged its first major electric bus order, for the supply of 50 buses to the Ahemdabad Bus Rapid Transit System. “We have received the LoI (letter of intent). The purchase order is expected once the Centre confirms subsidies,” Karthick Athmanathan, Head - EV and eMobility Solutions, Ashok Leyland, told BusinessLine. The electric buses are expected to start plying on the BRT corridor by the last quarter of this fiscal. Asked whether Ashok Leyland will supply its Circuit-S buses, which were showcased at Auto Expo 2018, Athmanathan said the powertrain and architecture of the buses supplied will be the same as the Circuit-S range but it will be a ‘slightly different’ platform. He further said Ashok Leyland is in the process of devising its energy management plan for the Ahmedabad order. “It could be a fast charging, swappable battery model, or some other solution. We have all the options and once the grid is confirmed, we will start implementing chargers and other support infrastructure,” he said. While he couldn’t provide the order value, he said the price of electric buses would depend on the number of batteries. Just the base electric bus, without the battery, will cost ?35-40 lakh more than the diesel bus today, he said. “The price will be higher by another ?15 lakh with battery,” he said adding, “this difference of ?35-40 lakh between the electric base variant and diesel bus is expected to come down to ?15-20 lakh in three-four years. The Ahmedabad BRT tender is part of the Centre’s initiative to encourage State transport undertakings to procure electric buses with Central subsidy. The Centre has sanctioned ?437 crore for the procurement of 390 electric buses across 11 major cities under the FAME programme. Other States are also in the process of procuring electric buses, supported by the Centre’s subsidies. Last year, the State transport corporation of Himachal Pradesh floated its tender for India’s first big electric bus order for 25 units, which was bagged by Chinese company BYD....
172 Asian Stocks Fall Ahead Of US Federal Reserve Policy Meeting OTHER 20 Mar, 2018 Asian shares fell on Tuesday after investors took profits in high-flying U.S. technology shares on fears of stiffer regulation as Facebook came under fire following reports it allowed improper access to user data. The retreat came as investors braced for new Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's first policy meeting starting later in the day and amid concerns that U.S. President Donald Trump could impose additional protectionist trade measures. "U.S. tech indexes, including Nasdaq and Philadelphia semi-conductor index all hit record highs last week. So they were prone to profit-taking," said Mutsumi Kagawa, chief strategist at Rakuten Securities. "Shares will be capped by various uncertainties for now. Once those uncertainties are cleared, investors will shift their focus back to relatively attractive valuations," he added. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropped 0.4 percent. Japan's Nikkei fell 1.0 percent. On Wall Street the S&P 500 lost 1.42 percent and the Nasdaq Composite 1.84 percent, both suffering their worst day in five weeks. "Investors lightened their positions ahead of the Fed's policy meeting. The markets are completely split on whether the Fed will project three rate hikes this year or four," said Hiroaki Mino, senior strategist at Mizuho Securities. Facebook led the losses, tumbling 6.8 percent as the social media colossus faced demands from U.S. and European lawmakers to explain how a consultancy that worked on President Donald Trump's election campaign gained improper access to data on 50 million Facebook users. In addition, worries about the potential for a trade war cast a shadow after U.S. President Trump imposed tariffs on steel and aluminium. The Trump administration is also expected to unveil up to $60 billion in new tariffs on Chinese imports by Friday, targeting technology, telecommunications and intellectual property, two officials briefed on the matter said Monday. U.S. businesses were alarmed with several large U.S. retail companies, including Wal-Mart Inc and Target Corp, on Monday urging Trump not to impose massive tariffs on goods imported from China. The sharp fall in share prices put a lid on long-term U.S. bond yields while short-dated yields rose ahead of an expected rate hike from the U.S. Federal Reserve after its two-day policy meeting starting on Tuesday. The yield on 10-year Treasuries was little changed at 2.857 percent, 10 basis points below the four-year high of 2.957 percent touched a month ago. But the yield on two-year notes hit a 9 1/2-year high of 2.32 percent on Monday as the Fed appears set to bump up its policy interest rates to 1.50-1.75 percent from the current 1.25-1.50 percent. Still, with a Fed rate rise already fully priced in, the dollar barely gained from the prospect of a rate hike. Instead it was the euro that stole the spotlight after Reuters reported that European Central Bank officials were shifting their debate from bond purchases to the expected path of interest rates. The euro rose to $1.2345, bouncing back from $1.2258 hit the previous day. The British pound hit one-month high of $1.4088 after Britain and the European Union agreed to a 21-month post-Brexit transition period and a potential solution to avoid a "hard border" for Northern Ireland. It was last at $1.4037. The yen was little changed at 106.01 per dollar, with traders wary of any new developments in a cronyism scandal that has eroded support for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Oil prices barely moved as investors remained wary of growing crude supply although tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran provided some support. COMMENTSBrent crude futures traded at $66.19 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures were $62.16 a barrel....
173 L&T set to win EPC contract for new dry dock in Kochi LT 20 Mar, 2018 Larsen & Toubro Ltd has emerged the lowest bidder in a tender issued by Cochin Shipyard Ltd (CSL) for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract of a new dry dock — the third in the state-run yard. India’s biggest engineering and construction firm placed the lowest rate for the EPC contract, a Shipping Ministry official briefed on the tendering process said without disclosing the rate. CSL had sold shares in an initial public offering (IPO) in August 2017 to part-fund a ?2,769-crore expansion plan comprising the construction of a ?1,799-crore dry dock at its yard and a ?970-crore international ship repair facility next door, at Cochin Port Trust. The company said its existing two dry docks permit building of ships up to 110,000 dead weight tonnage (dwt) and repairing of ships of up to 125,000 dwt. “These limitations have restricted our ability to expand business by constructing larger vessels, for which we believe there is greater demand and on which we believe we can achieve better profit margins by increasing our annual output,” said Cochin Shipyard in documents filed with market regulator SEBI for the IPO. Stepped dock The new dry dock will help CSL build very large ships such as capesize bulk carriers, general cargo ships, Aframax and Suezmax tankers, Panamax and post Panamax type container ships, LNG carriers, oil drilling rigs, semi-submersible rigs and better versions of aircraft carriers. The new dry dock will be a ‘stepped’ dock with a length of 310 m (the existing dry docks have a length of 270 m each), width of 75 m at the wider part, width of 60 m at the narrower part and depth of 13 m with a draught of up to 9.5 m. The stepped dock will enable longer vessels to fill the length of the dock, and wider, shorter vessels and rigs to be built or repaired at the wider part. CSL had awarded Simplex Infrastructures Ltd the EPC contract for the new ship repair facility it is setting up at Cochin Port Trust....
174 Tata Communications collaborates with Surbana Jurong TATACOMM 20 Mar, 2018 Tata Communications is working with Surbana Jurong, one of Asia’s largest urban, industrial and infrastructure consulting firms, to equip its Internet of Things (IoT) enabled lifts and escalators with secure, scalable connectivity to Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform. As a key part of its Smart City in a Box solution, Surbana Jurong’s Lift Monitoring System enables property management companies and public sector organizations to remotely monitor the safety and maintenance of lifts and escalators. The IoT-enabled monitoring system uses artificial intelligence tools on a Microsoft Azure cloud platform to predict when a lift or escalator is likely to fail, and trigger an alert for maintenance before a breakdown occurs. Given the critical nature of this operation, Surbana Jurong’s Lift Monitoring System uses the highly secure Microsoft Azure cloud platform coupled with Tata Communications MOVE. This IoT connectivity service enables data to be carried over an edge-to-edge encrypted virtual private network (VPN) for maximum reliability. Tata Communications along with its subsidiaries is a leading global provider of A New World of Communications. ...
175 RBI allows foreign investors to raise upto 49% in Future Retail FRETAIL 20 Mar, 2018 The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has notified that foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) can now invest up to 49 per cent of the paid-up capital in Future Retail (FRL) under the portfolio investment scheme, against the earlier cap of 24 per cent. FPIs currently hold 17.02 per cent stake in the company. FRL had passed necessary resolutions through its board of directors and general body meetings as required under FEMA, 1999, and the regulations framed thereunder. Future Retail offers food and grocery categories, fresh fruits and vegetables, meat and poultry, dairy products, staples, FMCG and processed foods, electronics and appliances, clothing and footwear, furniture and furnishing, and other household articles. ...
176 Arfin India bags Calcium management, Ferro Boron management at JSW Steel Plant JSWSTEEL 20 Mar, 2018 Arfin India has bagged Calcium management and Ferro Boron management at JSW Steel Plant, Dolvi for 100% steel production for one year. The company has recently received approval from National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) for the scheme of amalgamation. NCLT, Ahmedabad Bench had sanctioned the scheme of amalgamation of Mahendra Aluminium with Arfin India. Arfin India is leading manufacturer, supplier and exporter of Aluminium Wire, Aluminium Wire Rod, Flipped Coil Aluminium Wire Rod, Aluminium Alloy Wire Rod, Ferro Alloy Product, Aluminium Stick, Aluminium Cube, Aluminium Shot, Aluminium Ingot and Aluminium Alloy Ingot. ...
177 UltraTech Cement challenges Binani Cement sale to Dalmia Bharat ULTRACEMCO 19 Mar, 2018 UltraTech Cement Ltd, the Aditya Birla group company that has lost a bid to acquire Binani Cement Ltd, has challenged the sale of the cement maker to rival Dalmia Bharat Ltd, alleging lack of transparency in the bidding process. “The creditors of Binani Cement have overlooked important aspects of the resolution plan submitted by us and have hastily decided to approve the sale to Dalmia for reasons best known to them,” Atul Daga, chief financial officer at UltraTech Cement, said in an interview. “We fail to understand the reasons behind approving the sale to Dalmia, although we had made the highest bid,” Daga said. “Isn’t the committee of creditors responsible for looking after the interests of all stakeholders?” UltraTech has now challenged the sale to Dalmia Bharat at the National Company Law tribunal (NCLT), and the matter is scheduled to be heard on Monday at the Kolkata bench of the tribunal. On 16 March, a committee of Binani Cement creditors approved the resolution plan from a consortium led by Dalmia Bharat Ltd. The Dalmia Bharat consortium had bid about Rs6,350 crore ($978 million) and had offered close to a 20% stake in Binani Cement to its lenders. Dalmia Bharat proposed to make the Binani Cement investment through an equal joint venture with India Resurgence Fund, which is backed by Bain Capital Credit and Piramal Enterprises Ltd. Mint had reported on 19 February that both UltraTech and Dalmia had submitted bids of roughly around Rs6,000 crore each, with included upfront cash payments, as well as an offer of close to 20% stake in Binani to lenders. Although Dalmia Bharat’s bid was marginally higher, UltraTech had raised the offer by Rs700 crore, taking its overall offer above Rs7,000 crore. Mint had reported on 16 February that UltraTech was specifically asked by the creditors to provide information on a Competition Commission of India (CCI) penalty, which is a contingent liability on the company. In 2016, CCI had imposed a penalty of Rs1,175.49 crore on UltraTech. This was part of an overall penalty of Rs6,700 crore on 11 cement companies, including UltraTech, ACC, Ambuja Cements Ltd, Ramco Cements Ltd and JK Cement Ltd, as well as industry body Cement Manufacturers Association for indulging in cartelization. UltraTech approached the Competition Appellate Tribunal against the order, which stayed it. “We were told that our bid was not being considered because of the contingent liability following the CCI order,” said Daga. “Even before we revised the bid higher, the difference in score between us was marginal, but lost out as creditors unilaterally decided that we will not get the Competition Commission of India approval for the deal,” Daga added. On 23 February, UltraTech had approached the Competition Commission of India, seeking an approval in the event of it acquiring Binani Cement. Dalmia Bharat, too, had made a similar request to CCI. Binani Cement is a unit of Binani Industries Ltd (BIL). In July last year, NCLT’s Kolkata bench had admitted the insolvency petition against Binani Cement. Bank of Baroda (BoB) had referred the company to NCLT after it failed to repay around Rs100 crore, following which Vijaykumar V. Iyer of Deloitte India was appointed as the interim resolution professional (IRP). At the time of being admitted in NCLT, Binani Cement owed a consortium of lenders close to Rs3,042.93 crore. Mint reported in January that at least two lenders holding corporate guarantees of Binani Cement had approached the appellate bankruptcy tribunal after IRP rejected their claims on corporate guarantees worth Rs2,000 crore. Following the appeal, the appellate tribunal had admitted them as creditors of Binani Cement, thereby adding an additional Rs2,000 crore to its unpaid loans. ...
178 Signs of Revival Turn Lender Bullish on India's Villages OTHER 19 Mar, 2018 The recovery in India’s rural economy is likely to curb bad loans and boost profit at financial companies that specialize in credit to the country’s villages, according to one of the biggest such lenders. Mahindra & Mahindra Financial Services Ltd., which offers loans for equipment and vehicles in 330,000 of India’s roughly 600,000 villages, is seeing business growing and bad loans dropping since the middle of 2017. That’s because the crucial monsoon rainfall was normal last year and the negative effects of the government’s shock decision to invalidate high-value currency notes is fading as authorities step up spending on roads and healthcare across the hinterland, said M&M Financial Managing Director Ramesh Iyer. “We have a bullish forecast for the agrarian economy,” Iyer said in an interview at the company’s headquarters in Mumbai, adding that delinquent customers are now resuming loan repayments. “The twin cash flow -- income from farm produce and government’s infra spend -- is leading to an improvement in rural sentiment.” India had been ravaged by insufficient rainfall since 2015 and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cash ban the following year caused crop prices to crash, triggering a wave of farmer protests across India. That pushed authorities to shift policy from keeping food costs low for consumers to offering farmers higher prices for their produce, and last week the government of Maharashtra state -- epicenter of the agrarian crisis -- agreed to consider forgiving the debt of more farmers. More money in the hands of farmers stands to boost demand for tractors and trucks, benefiting companies like M&M Financial. However, such waivers do little to improve a farmers’ creditworthiness -- which depends more on the outlook of the harvest, Iyer said. The market for agricultural credit in India is dominated by state-run banks, which are used as policy tools given that the bulk of India’s population depends on agriculture for their livelihood. However, government-controlled lenders have been hit by the souring of the credit they extended to industrial companies, which has curbed new loans. This has allowed non-bank financial companies to grab a bigger market share, with M&M Financial and its peers accounting for about 21 percent of loans in the year to March 2017. M&M Financial last quarter reported its strongest growth in profits since at least 2010 due to recoveries in non-performing loans, and management expects lower fresh delinquencies going forward, analysts at Emkay Global said in January. The brokerage upgraded its rating on the company to hold with a target price of 520 rupees. “Going by demand for farm equipment, commercial vehicles and construction equipment, rural demand is outpacing urban after about three years," Iyer said. “In the last three quarters, there has been a change for good.”...
179 IOC and BPCL may buy 26% stake each in GAIL GAIL 19 Mar, 2018 IOC and BPCL may buy 26% stake each in the gas utility company of India - GAIL, as per media reports. This may lead to paying the government over Rs20,000cr each to become integrated energy firms. IOC and BPCL had submitted separate proposals to buy the government's ~54% stake in GAIL India, the report said. Shares of Bharat Petroleum Corp and Indian Oil Corp will also be in focus following the news. It is followed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's February 2017 Budget announcement of creating integrated oil majors after which ONGC bought out government's 51.11% in HPCL for Rs36,915cr. GAIL, majority owned by the government of India ~(54%), is the largest natural gas transmission and marketing company in India. It owns a pan India gas grid capable of transmitting 206mmscmd. Apart from gas transmission, it is also the largest gas marketer in the country. It also has interests in LPG production and transmission, petrochemical production and city gas distribution. It is also a key LNG player in India with an owned terminal at Dabhol (5mtpa) and through strategic stake (12.5%) in Petronet LNG, which operates LNG terminals at Dahej and Kochi. GAIL (India) Ltd ended at Rs440.85 down by Rs9.55 or 2.12% from its previous closing of Rs450.40 on the BSE. The stock traded below its 100 DMA....
180 Lupin receives USFDA approval for generic Topicort Topical Spray LUPIN 19 Mar, 2018 Lupin has received final approval for its Desoximetasone Topical Spray, 0.25%, 30 ml, 50 ml, and 100 ml from the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) to market a generic version of Taro Pharmaceuticals USA Inc.’s Topicort Topical Spray, 0.25%. Lupin’s Desoximetasone Topical Spray, 0.25%, 30 ml, 50 ml, and 100 ml is the generic equivalent of Taro Pharmaceuticals USA Inc.’s Topicort Topical Spray 0.25%. It is a corticosteroid indicated for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in patients 18 years of age or older. Desoximetasone Topical Spray, 0.25%, 30 ml, 50 ml, and 100 ml had annual sales of approximately $19.5 million in the US (IQVIA MAT January 2018). Lupin is an innovation led transnational pharmaceutical company developing and delivering a wide range of branded & generic formulations, biotechnology products and APIs globally. ...
181 Brace Yourself, It’s Going to Be a Busy Week in the World Economy OTHER 19 Mar, 2018 Investors and policy makers should get some rest this weekend: For those tracking the world economy, next week is shaping up to be one of the busiest in recent memory. From the selection of a new governor at the People’s Bank of China to the Federal Reserve’s likely first interest rate increase of 2018, here is a rundown of the key events and the stories you need to read to get ready for them. Five months after PBOC Governor Zhou Xiaochuan hinted he would soon step down after 15 years, the National People’s Congress will name his successor. Tasked with guiding the world’s second largest economy as its authorities try to curb its debt, Zhou’s replacement will take the reins of a central bank that’s wielding ever greater power at home and abroad. Just this week, the government handed it the power to rewrite the rules for the financial sector it’s seeking to restrain. Here’s a look at some of the candidates to replace Zhou and a dashboard on their experience. Central bankers and finance ministers from the Group of 20 are gathering for the first time this year in Buenos Aires. Their talks start Monday and conclude with the release of a statement on Tuesday. They convene at a time when the global economy is in rude health, yet concerns are growing that its upswing may boil over. While officials say they want to discuss what to do about cryptocurrencies, the topic of the moment is President Donald Trump’s plan to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum. Many governments are lobbying to be exempted, while also warning of a potential trade war. That could make for an uncomfortable couple of days for U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin as he tries to play down trade frictions. Scandal-plagued Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso will not be attending. Jerome Powell makes his debut in the hot seat, chairing his first meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee after taking over from Janet Yellen. With the economy growing and the labor market tightening, betting is the Fed will raise its benchmark overnight lending rate to a range of 1.5 percent to 1.75 percent. Perhaps a bigger question is whether officials will boost their estimate for 2018 rate hikes to four from a median of three at their last forecast round in December. Elsewhere in the Americas, Brazil’s central bank is predicted to cut its key rate to a record low. Bank of England officials are expected to lay the groundwork for an interest-rate increase in May. Inflation in the U.K. is still 1 percentage point above the bank’s target and policy makers are concerned that the economy’s speed-limit has dropped since the Brexit vote, leaving it at risk of overheating. Investors currently assign a more than 80 percent chance of a move in May, and it would take a big shock from the BOE on Thursday to prompt a significant unwinding of that trade. Elsewhere in the world, New Zealand, the Philippines and Indonesia also set rates today. Germany releases its Ifo Index on the business climate, which is expected to slip. Trump this month announced 25 percent tariffs on imported steel and 10 percent for aluminum and they take effect Friday. Canada and Mexico are already excluded from the levies, and the Trump administration has left the door open for Australia and possibly other allies to win a similar concession if they can show they are trading fairly and are national-security partners. Planned retaliation from the European Union to China has triggered concerns over a global trade war....
182 Unilever Picks Netherlands Over U.K. as Base in Blow to May HINDUNILVR 16 Mar, 2018 Unilever is consolidating its headquarters in the Netherlands, abandoning a separate London base in a blow to Prime Minister Theresa May’s effort to maintain investment in the U.K. after it leaves the European Union. The maker of quintessentially British brands like Marmite spread and Lipton tea is streamlining the dual nationality it has maintained for nearly a century. Unilever said the move will ease mergers and acquisitions, which have become a priority for slow-growing consumer-goods giants as predators take aim. “It gives us more more strategic flexibility to undertake major M&A using the stock or demerge parts of our business in the future,’’ Chief Financial Officer Graeme Pitkethly said on a call, though the company said it doesn’t currently envision large-scale transactions. Losing the headquarters of the U.K.’s third-biggest company, operating in 190 countries, is a setback for May’s vision of a post-Brexit economy open to the world. The shift runs counter to a move by information and events business RELX, which recently opted for a single London-based parent company after 25 years of also having a Dutch owner. “Unilever’s decision to pick the Netherlands over the U.K. is another sign of the weakening of the business environment in Britain since the referendum,” Chris Bryant, a member of Parliament who supports staying in the bloc, said in a statement. Multiple Listings Easing the U.K.’s pain, Unilever said it plans to base its beauty and personal-care division and the home-care business in London. It will continue to list its shares in both countries, as well as the U.S. The vast majority of the 7,300 people the company employs in the U.K. and 3,100 in the Netherlands won’t be affected, it said. Unilever shares were down 2 percent at 1:10 p.m., London, with those traded in Amsterdam falling 1.5 percent. Unilever decided to consolidate its headquarters after staving off an unsolicited takeover bid from Kraft Heinz Co. last year. Activist investors have targeted rivals Nestle SA and Procter & Gamble Co. -- which, like Unilever, are facing sluggish sales of mainstream food and personal-care brands. Dutch takeover laws provide more protection against hostile approaches than the U.K.’s code. Netherlands Prime Minister Mark Rutte used to work at Unilever, and Chief Executive Officer Paul Polman is Dutch. Rutte has proposed scrapping a dividend tax, making the country more attractive to multinationals. The shift is “a great boost for the Netherlands and Rotterdam,” Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb said via a spokesman, adding that the company opted for a place where “the interests of Unilever are well served, where it will be less of a prey to acquisitions.” The move keeps Unilever’s headquarters within the EU after the U.K.’s expected departure from the bloc. Its base in Rotterdam will continue to benefit from free cross-border movement of labor, though Pitkethly said the decision was made on other grounds. “It’s a pretty historic move and it’s certainly not connected to Brexit,” he said. “Why not? Because it’s such a long-term view we’re taking for the next 30, 50 years.” Airbus, Toyota The move follows U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond’s portrayal of Britain as an attractive destination for foreign investment as he provided an update on the country’s budget this week. Multinational manufacturers including Airbus SE and Toyota Motor Corp. have reaffirmed their commitment to the U.K. Unilever said several key executives, including personal-care chief Alan Jope and home-care head Kees Kruythoff, will move from to London from current bases outside the U.K. The company said it hasn’t decided whether Polman and Pitkethly will formally relocate from Britain to the Netherlands. More than 100 jobs have shifted to Rotterdam as part of the merger of Unilever’s food and refreshment units. “As the company itself has made clear, its decision to transfer a small number of jobs to a corporate HQ in the Netherlands is part of a long-term restructuring of the company and is not connected to the U.K.’s departure from the EU,” the U.K. Business Department said in a statement. The decision will help Unilever cut costs and simplify a convoluted structure it has maintained since the 1930 merger of Margarine Unie of the Netherlands and U.K. soapmaker Lever Brothers. The company hosts two annual general meetings, employs two boards composed of the same members and operates under separate takeover regulations. End of Year The proposals are subject to approval of the British and Dutch entities’ shareholders, with implementation expected toward the end of this year, Unilever said. The Dutch entity represents about 55 percent of the combined share capital and trades with greater liquidity than the British company, Pitkethly said. “We chose the Netherlands because pretty simply, at the end of the day, the Dutch company is quite a bit bigger than the U.K.,” he said....
183 Signs of Revival in Rural India Predict Recovery for Economy OTHER 15 Mar, 2018 Shankar K.C.’s wife pawned her jewelry to help pay for a new red tractor, which the 46-year-old farmer parks in his courtyard as a symbol of his prosperity. Encouraged by relatively good rains, better prices for his grain and vegetable crops and a state government subsidy for the cow milk he sells, Shankar scraped together a deposit of 300,000 rupees ($4,627) and got bank finance for a matching amount to make his biggest-ever purchase. Premlatha was so confident that her husband would make enough money from their small-scale farm to buy back her jewels that she didn’t protest. Both of them were beaming with pride as they spoke about their fresh acquisition, sitting in their living room furnished with just a cot and an old-style television. “We wanted to buy a tractor for a long time but had no money,” said Shankar. “Life has improved -- I can supplement my income by renting out the tractor to other farmers." Shankar is one of the 300 inhabitants of Kuragunda village in the southern, largely rural state of Karnataka, enjoying early signs of a recovery in the agricultural sector. If sustained, it could bode a turnaround from years of distress in rural India since Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in 2014 and bolster his re-election chances next year. At Vijaya Farm Equipments, a dealer of Mahindra Tractors where Shankar bought his vehicle, the mood is upbeat. The showroom doubled its sales in February from a year ago, underscoring figures from Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd., India’s largest tractor maker, where sales jumped 39 percent that month. “This year has been a positive one and the tractor industry growth is riding on the cash liquidity in the farmers’ hands due to a good crop, government support to the sector and a push towards building rural infrastructure,” said Rajesh Jejurikar, president of the farm equipment sector at Mahindra & Mahindra. Rural Tracker A Bloomberg Economics index that tracks the rural economy shows tractor and two-wheeler sales are up and the government is spending more. Monsoon rains are set for a third good year -- another sign of hope for an industry that was beset by back-to-back droughts followed by a disruptive cash ban in late 2016. “A revival in rural activity bodes well for the broader growth recovery,” said Abhishek Gupta, an economist at Bloomberg Economics in Mumbai. “It is likely to boost the equity returns of agrarian and rural consumption stocks. And with nearly two-thirds of India’s population residing in rural areas, a recovery is likely to enhance political stability by improving Modi’s chances of re-election next year.” Read Bloomberg Economics’ Report: New Rural Tracker Shows Early Signs of RecoveryAfter sweeping to victory with the help of the rural vote, Modi’s popularity has taken a knock as farming incomes slumped, debts piled up, joblessness rose and suicides climbed. Growth Prospects Hit by criticism that he’d neglected his rural base and after his party’s worst electoral showing in two decades in his home state of Gujarat, Modi has set out on a course of correction. He has pledged to double farmers’ incomes by 2022, raise the support prices on additional crops and spend more on irrigation and infrastructure in rural areas. On Wednesday, the government agreed to extend a fertilizer subsidy program until 2020. Farm loan waivers by some state governments are also helping. “Life has started returning to normal now,” Laxmi Narayan Gowda, a 48-year-old farmer, said on the side of the road in Kuragunda village. “It’s not the best situation but people are able to spend on marriages, buying goods and building houses.” With almost 70 percent of India’s 1.3 billion people living in rural villages and agriculture contributing about 16 percent of gross domestic product, what happens in the sector determines not only Modi’s election fate, but also growth prospects for the $2.3 trillion economy. The statistics office is forecasting expansion of 6.6 percent in the year through March, slightly above its earlier estimate of 6.5 percent, while the central bank expects government programs to boost rural incomes and investment will help underpin demand. Protest March Consumer goods companies such as Marico Ltd., Eveready Industries India Ltd., and Godrej Consumer Products Ltd. saw traction in rural sales in the December quarter and expect further growth in coming months. Britannia Industries Ltd. has witnessed higher growth in rural markets compared to urban markets, India’s most valuable cookie maker said by email. The company expects rural sales to account for 40 percent of its revenue in the next two years, up from 30 percent now, as the government’s support helps to boost consumers’ disposable income. For many in rural India though, recovery remains elusive. Nearly 50,000 farmers marched to the financial capital of Mumbai on Monday demanding loan waivers and higher crop prices. “Sales numbers are an indicator of change but not an indicator of the condition of agriculture or rural economy,” said Narendra Pani, a professor at the National Institute of Advanced Studies in Bengaluru. Doubling farmers’ income would be an electoral boost, but doing so may be a tall order, he said. Rain Forecast India’s biggest maker of consumer products, Hindustan Unilever Ltd, the local unit of Unilever NV, said while there’s a pick-up underway, it would wait for another two quarters before concluding that the rural market’s out-performance over urban areas was here to stay. Good rains will be key. The meteorological department hasn’t given an official forecast yet, but Bloomberg Economics’ analysis, based on forecasts for El Nino and La Nina weather patterns, shows favorable conditions.“Hopefully my income will double to 100,000 rupees this year,” Shankar said, counting on favorable rainfall to help pay off his debts quickly so he can buy another tractor in three years. "I’ll be able to give a better future to my children." ...
184 Hunting for Value in India's Power Lenders May Be a `Blind Bet' OTHER 15 Mar, 2018 Rural Electrification Corp. and Power Finance Corp. are among the worst performers in an index of India’s top 100 companies this year. Analysts say the lenders’ shares are cheap for good reasons. The government-ordered restraint on lending to loss-making power distributors has marred the outlook for the state financiers, accelerating a slide that’s put their shares on course for a third month of losses. Jefferies on Wednesday cut its fiscal 2019-20 earnings estimates by more than 25 percent for Power Finance and by over 8 percent for Rural Electrification. “Medium- to long-term outlook is challenging as existing receivables are stuck” with state distributors, said Deven Choksey, managing director at K.R. Choksey Shares & Securities Pvt. The shares may have fallen too far but “there’s no clarity at present and so it is futile to put money in them. It will be a blind bet,” he said. Power Minister R.K. Singh on Feb. 8 asked Rural Electrification and Power Finance to not give loans to distribution companies unless they come up with a plan to reduce losses. That’s not going to be easy as “state government’s finances are in a bad shape," said Chokkalingam G, managing director at Equinomics Research & Advisory Pvt. “They will have to make additional provisions.”...
185 JSPL Looking To Raise Up To $200 Million Via Institutional Share Sale: Exclusive JINDALSTEL 15 Mar, 2018 One of India’s leading steel makers, Jindal Steel & Power Ltd., promoted by Naveen Jindal, is said to be looking to raise upto $200 million or close to Rs 1,250 crore via a qualified institutional placement or share sale to institutional investors. The debt-laden company aims to use most of the issue proceeds to pare debt, two people close to the development told BloombergQuint on the condition of anonymity. JSPL’s total debt, according to data complied by Bloomberg, stood at Rs 23,689 crore, as Dec. 31, 2017. The company’s total revenue for the third quarter rose 21 percent to Rs 6,993 crore as compared to the same period last year, according to its financial statements. Net loss narrowed to Rs 448 crore from Rs 1,101 crore year-on-year. Finance costs for the quarter rose to Rs 967 crore. SBI Caps is said to the investment banker to the QIP issue. The pricing of the issue is likely to be close to the current market price. The two-week average price is Rs 230-235 range on which a maximum discount of 5 percent can be offered, as per guidelines of the Securities and Exchange Board of India. The share placement is intended to raise upwards of Rs 1,000 crore, but the quantum of fund raising depends on the demand and response from institutional investors, said one of the sources quoted above. The company board will meet on March 16 to decide on the QIP, it said in a stock exchange filing earlier. Shares of JSPL have risen over 80 percent in the last 12 months after the company took measures to deleverage its balance sheet. These include both asset sales and equity fund raising to pare debt. In November 2017, the company allotted 4.8 crore convertible warrants to a promoter entity which will help raise nearly Rs 670 crore on full conversion into equity shares. JSPL said in an emailed response to BloombergQuint that it has “nothing more to share beyond filings already made on stock exchanges”....
186 Himadri Speciality Chemical to invest ?1,000 cr for making specialty carbon black HSCL 15 Mar, 2018 Himadri Speciality Chemical will invest ?1,000 crore over five years to expand its carbon black business. Plans are afoot to set up new carbon black lines in its existing integrated plant at Mahistikry in West Bengal for producing specialty carbon black. According to Anurag Choudhary, CEO, the company, which currently has a capacity of producing 1.2 lakh tonne of carbon black a year, will be adding 2 lakh tonne capacity in the next five years. “We will be investing close to ?300-400 crore (out of the ?1,000-crore) in the first phase to add close to 60,000 tonne capacity. Commercial production (from this expansion) is likely by April 2019,” Choudhary said at a press conference here on Wednesday. The investment will primarily be by way of internal accruals, he said. The company plans to introduce close to 40 new grades of carbon black and expects to clock additional revenue of ?2,500-3,000 crore from the new product lines once it is fully operational. Growing demand The specialty grades of carbon black find application in racing tyre, moulded rubber goods, wires, cables and fibres. Globally, the demand for specialty carbon has been growing at a CAGR of 3 per cent, while the domestic demand is close to 80,000 tonne and growing at a CAGR of over 6 per cent. Nearly 50 per cent of the domestic demand is currently met through imports, he said. Once the entire 2 lakh tonne goes on-stream Himadri will be in a position to cater to nearly 70 per cent of the domestic demand. The company will also look at exporting close to 80 per cent of its production to North America, Europe, Asia and West Asia. The company is expecting to clock ?2,200 crore of revenue in the current fiscal, almost 50 per cent higher than ?1,471 crore in FY-17....
187 Suzlon commissions 340 MW solar projects SUZLON 15 Mar, 2018 ?Renewable energy company Suzlon has announced it has commissioned 340 MW solar power generation projects across Telangana, Rajasthan and Maharashtra. With the commissioning of the 340 MW generation capacity, Suzlon has completed delivery of its entire solar order book. These projects were commissioned on turnkey basis. ?The orders entail comprehensive operation and maintenance (O&M) services to be provided by Suzlon for a period of 25 years. ?These projects were won through competitive bidding in Telangana, NTPC bid in Rajasthan and SECI bid in Maharashtra. J.P. Chalasani, Group CEO, Suzlon Group in a statement said, “We have delivered the entire 340 MW solar project on turnkey basis. Our focus on solar will continue to be through wind-solar hybrid projects, which will lead to better utilisation of grid, due to complementary generation profile." "It will also save on duplication of costs such as land and evacuation infrastructure. We have an edge due to our existing large land bank, technologically advanced products and nationwide O&M strength. With the positive change in the Indian renewable energy landscape, we are confident that volumes will witness significant growth across all sources of clean energy. Suzlon endeavours to bring down the cost of energy and provide clean and affordable energy for all,” ?he said....
188 Jet Airways to add 144 weekly flights from end of March 2018 JETAIRWAYS 15 Mar, 2018 Jet Airways (India) Ltd on Wednesday said that it will introduce an additional 144 weekly flights as part of its summer schedule, starting March-end. “As part of the new schedule, Jet Airways will strengthen connectivity between the country’s capital and the northeastern region,” Jet Airways said in a statement. Jet Airways’ move to increase flights comes after the country’s aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) grounded 11 Airbus A320Neo aircraft, powered by Pratt & Whitney engines, belonging to IndiGo and GoAir, causing both airlines to cancel several flights over the last two days. The Naresh Goyal-led airline is also starting non-stop flights from Pune to Patna, Raipur and Chandigarh. It will begin a daily, non-stop service between Mumbai and Tiruchirappalli and Tiruchirappalli and Delhi. “The upcoming robust connectivity between the Northeast and India’s financial as well as political capital is expected to provide a positive stimulus to the region’s economy, boosting tourism as well as development of business and trade, leading to enhancement of cargo movement,” Jet Airways added. Jet Airways currently operates over 500 daily flights, said a spokesperson of the airline. Operations at both IndiGo and GoAir are expected to be significantly disrupted in the run-up to the peak travelling season that starts in April. Flights that were cancelled during the last two days were mostly ones from the national capital and included busy routes like Delhi-Mumbai, Delhi-Kolkata, Guwahati-Delhi, Indore-Mumbai and Delhi-Hyderabad. GoAir on Tuesday said that it had cancelled 18 flights (daily) till 24 March following the grounding of three of its aircraft. IndiGo cancelled 48 flights on the same day. According to Kinjal Shah, vice-president of corporate rating at Icra, the grounded planes account for about 3% of the total fleet maintained by domestic airlines. Other airlines are looking to fill the supply vacuum created by the grounding of IndiGo and GoAir aircraft. Air India, which operates wide-bodied aircraft on the Delhi-Mumbai sector, could increase the number of aircraft on popular domestic routes to cater to the high demand during the summer season, a senior airline official said. A SpiceJet spokesperson said that the airline can’t comment on its frequency or routes for the upcoming summer schedule since it is yet to be approved by the regulator....
189 UltraTech Cement hikes bid for Binani Cement to $1 billion ULTRACEMCO 15 Mar, 2018 UltraTech Cement Ltd. has increased its bid for Binani Cement Ltd. in an email to the resolution professional overseeing the company’s bankruptcy proceedings as it tries to beat a consortium backed by Bain Capital that’s in the lead. The company has raised its offer to about Rs6,600 crore ($1 billion) from about Rs6,200 crore earlier, chief financial officer Atul Daga said in an interview on Wednesday. UltraTech, controlled by billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla, is competing with the consortium led by Dalmia Bharat Ltd., which has been chosen as the highest bidder. Vijaykumar Iyer of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India LLP is the resolution professional overseeing the bidding. “We are not happy with the way the process has been dealt with,” Daga said. “It’s not transparent and equitable. Specially when there was only a marginal difference in both the bids, the lenders should have called both the bidders to maximize the value.” UltraTech, India’s biggest cement maker, has approached the National Company Law Tribunal and the matter will be heard on 19 March, he said. Deloitte did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment. Dalmia Bharat had put in a bid of about Rs6,350 crore, people familiar with the matter said last month. The consortium’s proposal included offering about a 20% stake in Binani Cement to its lenders, the people said. Dalmia Bharat made a joint offer with India Resurgence Fund, which is backed by Bain Capital Credit and local conglomerate Piramal Enterprises Ltd., the people said. UltraTech’s earlier offer would rise to about 72 billion once working capital is included, Daga said. “Our resolution plan is balanced,” he said. “We are also paying the trade creditors.” UltraTech is also unhappy that past industry issues with India’s competition commission were considered when scoring the bids, Daga said. The company has made two acquisitions since 2012 and both have been approved by the commission, he said. UltraTech has served notice to the resolution professional asking for bidding details, Business Standard reported 7 March, citing unnamed sources. Binani has secured lenders of about Rs4,000 crore and unsecured lenders of about Rs2,500 crore. ...
190 India’s Palm Oil Imports Seen Climbing on Summer Season Demand OTHER 14 Mar, 2018 India’s palm oil imports probably advanced in February as rising demand before the summer season outweighed higher prices. Imports in the world’s biggest buyer climbed about 8 percent to 795,000 metric tons from a year earlier, according to the median of four estimates in a Bloomberg survey of processors, brokers and analysts. Total vegetable oil purchases decreased 5.4 percent to 1.2 million tons. The Solvent Extractors’ Association of India is likely to release monthly trade numbers this week. Palm oil prices on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives rose 2.7 percent in February, after falling for three straight months on higher stockpiles, muted demand from key buyers and expectations of a surge in supply later in the year. Palm has fallen 5.7 percent this month after India increased import duties. Still, prices in India are about $25-$30 a ton lower than imports, prompting some buyers to delay shipments for about 15 days, Sandeep Bajoria, chief executive officer of Sunvin Group, a Mumbai-based broker and consultant for the oilseeds industry. Soybean oil purchases declined about 23 percent to 193,500 tons in February, the survey showed. India buys soybean oil mainly from the U.S., Brazil and Argentina. Sunflower oil imports fell around 7.4 percent to 194,000 tons. Canola oil imports were seen at 19,000 tons. ...
191 Top Indian Refiner Eyes $1.5 Billion Savings With Own Plant Tech OTHER 14 Mar, 2018 India’s biggest oil refiner has developed refining processes that may help it save at least $1.5 billion in costs as well as challenge global giants in the technology leasing business. State-run Indian Oil Corp., which controls nearly half of the country’s refineries, has created its own processes using catalysts and hydro-cracking to convert crude oil into fuels such as gasoline, diesel and liquefied petroleum gas, according to the company’s head of R&D. That means it won’t have to license technology anymore from the likes of major manufacturing companies such as Honeywell International Inc. “We were at the mercy of a few multinational suppliers,” S.S.V. Ramakumar, director of research and development at Indian Oil, known as IOC, said in an interview in Faridabad, 20 miles away from the nation’s capital city. “Now we have become a technology developer and going forward, we will become a technology provider.” Building refining technologies squares with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s campaign to turn the country into a global manufacturing hub. It may also allow the refiner to have more control over its plants and enable it to adapt quicker to changes in domestic fuel demand, which is growing at the fastest pace in the world. IOC can now supply more than 75 percent of the technology needed for its plants, Ramakumar said. The licensing fees it typically pays out to refining-technology providers is about 5 percent of the project cost, he said. That means savings of about $1.5 billion on the estimated $40 billion mega-refinery it’s planning with some other state processors on the country’s west coast, according to Bloomberg calculations. Indian Oil has a home-grown fluidized catalytic cracking unit, called IndMax, that can increase LPG output at its newest 300,000 barrels-a-day refinery on the country’s east coast. It also plans to spend 2 billion rupees ($31 million) to build a catalyst manufacturing plant in Panipat in northern India. “Indian refiners spend 20 billion rupees every year on catalysts,” Ramakumar said. “We had to pay whatever the manufacturers charged, draining a lot of foreign exchange.” The refiner is also looking to lease the technologies, making a foray into a field traditionally dominated by firms such as Honeywell as well as Axens and Technip SA. IOC is in talks with five or six overseas refineries for IndMax adoption, as well as several domestic rivals, Ramakumar said....
192 JSW Steel reports crude steel production of 1.33 MT in February 2018 JSWSTEEL 14 Mar, 2018 JSW Steel has reported crude steel production of 1.33 million tonnes (MT) in February 2018, a growth of 5% over the corresponding month in 2017.The production of rolled products (long) increased to 0.34 MT as compared to 0.25 MT in February 2017, representing a surge of 36%. The production of rolled products (flat) increased marginally to 0.91 MT, a rise of 2%, as compared to 0.90 MT in February 2017. JSW Steel is one of the largest steel manufacturing companies in India having units in Karnataka and Maharashtra producing crude steel, long steel and flat steel products. ...
193 HDFC Bank Blocks Its Cards For Buying Or Trading Cryptocurrencies HDFCBANK 14 Mar, 2018 Following the regulatory discomfort on cryptocurrencies, second largest private sector lender HDFC Bank today blocked its cards from being used to purchase or trade in such instruments. “We have decided to not permit use of HDFC Bank credit, debit and prepaid cards towards purchase or trading of bitcoins, cryptocurrencies and virtual currencies, on merchants suspected to be dealing in crypto-currency or online foreign exchange trading or both,” the bank said. In the communique to its customers, the bank said there are “increasing global apprehensions” regarding such instruments and the Reserve Bank has also cautioned regarding the potential economic, operational, legal and security related risks associated in dealing with such currencies. The move comes after multiple warnings by the RBI and the finance ministry on the non-fiat virtual currencies. Earlier this year, banks had reportedly stopped or delayed processing deposits and withdrawals in dedicated bitcoin exchanges. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's had on Feb. 1 made the government position very clear in the Budget speech, wherein he had said such instruments were illegal and promised action to eliminate their use. “Government does not consider cryptocurrencies legal tender or coins and will take all measures to eliminate the use of these crypto-assets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payment system,” he had said. However, the bitcoin exchanges had reacted to it saying it is “business as usual” even after the statement and said Jaitley's comments were being misinterpreted. “There is no change in the government stance with respect to trading cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrency holders need not panic and the business is as usual,” chief executive and co-founder of Unocoin Sathvik Vishwanath had said. Another player Belfrics Global’s chairman Praveen Kumar Vijayakumar said government was taking time to understand the crypto world and the country' global share on cryptocurrency market was steadily increasing. It can be noted that there has been a huge volatility in the price of the bitcoin over the past few months, which surged to a very high level before crashing down. The bitcoins are “mined” using complex algorithms....
194 Suzlon installs India’s largest wind turbine generator SUZLON 14 Mar, 2018 The Suzlon Group has announced it has installed largest wind turbine generator ever manufactured in India with rotor diameter of 128 metres. This has the country’s largest single rotor blade measuring 63 metres and reduced levelised cost of energy. The S128 wind turbine generator (WTG) is being offered in 2.6 MW to 2.8 MW variants and offers hub heights up to 140 metres. JP Chalasani, Group CEO, Suzlon Group, in a statement said: “The S128 wind turbine is going to be a revolutionary product. It has been our continuous effort to reduce the levelised cost of energy (LCoE) and we continue to invest in R&D with an aim to develop technologically advanced and innovative products.” “It is a proud moment for us to manufacture, install and commission the largest wind turbine generator in the country. With its reduced levelised cost of energy, cost effective design and superior performance S128 will unlock unviable sites and set new benchmarks in the Indian wind industry,” he said. Duncan Koerbel, Chief Technology Officer, Suzlon Energy, said: “Our focus is on developing efficient turbines that ensure higher ROI to our customers. The prototype of the S128 is delivering close to conventional fuel competitive Plant Load Factor (PLF).” “We are leveraging the S128 technology to further grow our portfolio to bring offshore size technology onshore to India and other developing markets,” Koerbel said....
195 Tata Power’s TPDDL estimates peak electricity demand of about 2,000 MW this summer TATAPOWER 14 Mar, 2018 Tata Power’s TPDDL, the power utility that supplies electricity in North and North West Delhi, has estimated a peak electricity demand of about 2,000 MW this summer. Last year, during summer, the demand peaked to 1,852 MW in the TPDDL area. Tata Power Delhi Distribution (TPDDL) is a joint venture (JV) of Tata Power and the Government of Delhi. To ensure uninterrupted power supply during summer, TPDDL had exported power up to 300 MW to the states of Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh during winter of 2017-18 under the banking arrangements. The same power shall now be returned by these states to TPDDL in the summer month of 2018. Tata Power is India’s largest integrated power company with a growing international presence. The company together with its subsidiaries and jointly controlled entities has presence in all the segments of the power sector viz. Fuel Security and Logistics, Generation (thermal, hydro, solar and wind), Transmission, Distribution and Trading. ...
196 Torrent Pharma may raise Rs1,500 crore in bid for Sanofi generics business TORNTPHARM 14 Mar, 2018 Torrent Pharma Ltd is likely to raise at least Rs1,500 crore by selling shares to institutional investors, as it prepares a bid for the generic drugs unit of France’s Sanofi, two people aware of the development said. Torrent Pharma is readying a €2 billion (Rs16,000 crore) binding bid for Sanofi’s unit Zentiva NV, Mint reported on 7 March. It has tied up funding from several banks for the bid, the deadline for which ends on 28 March, the report added. “Torrent has appointed JP Morgan and JM Financial to help it raise Rs1,500 to support its acquisition efforts. The firm has already had a couple of rounds of meetings with probable investors for the purpose of the fund-raising,” one of the people cited above said, requesting anonymity, as he is not authorized to speak to reporters. The proposed fundraising will help the pharma company strengthen its balance sheet as it looks to absorb yet another major asset, he added. On 1 March, Torrent told exchanges that its shareholders had approved raising as much as Rs5,000 crore of equity capital through a qualified institutional placement (QIP) and other routes. According to the second person cited above, Torrent has a strong track record of growing through acquisitions and therefore it should not see much difficulty in convincing investors to participate in its QIP. He too requested anonymity. In January, the company announced the acquisition of US-based generic pharmaceuticals company, Biopharm Inc (BPI). BPI is a maker of oral solutions, suspensions and suppositories. In November last year, it acquired the domestic business of Unichem Laboratories for close to Rs3,600 crore. In 2014, Torrent acquired the branded domestic formulations business of Elder Pharma for Rs2,000 crore and acquired select brands of Novartis, and manufacturing plants of Zyg Pharma and Glochem Industries in 2015. According to analysts, Torrent has a track record of turning around acquired assets and controlling its debt post acquisition and that should comfort investors. “Post the Unichem acquisition, net debt increased to Rs4,000 crore (as against Rs2,350 crore in September 2017). Torrent Pharma’s track record of successful turnaround of the acquired Elder business and debt reduction post the acquisition in FY14, provides comfort,” Spark Capital said in a research note last month. Emails sent on Friday to Torrent Pharma and JM Financial did not elicit any response. JP Morgan declined to comment. Torrent’s acquisition of Zentiva, if it happens, will be the biggest outbound transaction by an Indian drug maker. As on date, the record for the largest outbound acquisition stands in the name of Lupin Ltd, which in 2015 acquired Gavis Pharmaceuticals Llc. and Novel Laboratories Inc. for $880 million. Sanofi had acquired Zentiva in 2009 for close to $2.6 billion. It is currently the third-largest generics company in Europe and sells medicines for cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, anti-inflammatory, pain management, metabolic and blood disorders, among others. Incorporated in 1971, Torrent Pharma has a presence in markets such as the US, UK, Germany, Brazil and Mexico. On Monday, its shares fell 0.38%, or Rs4.95, to Rs1,305.65 while the benchmark Sensex shed 0.18%, or 61.16 points, to end the day at 33,856.78....
197 HFCL commences work to set-up Optical Fiber manufacturing plant HFCL 13 Mar, 2018 Himachal Futuristic Communications (HFCL) has commenced setting up of greenfield project of manufacturing Optical Fiber (OF) in the state of Telangana at S-9, Fab City, E-City, Raviryala & Srinagar (V), Maheshwaram (M), Srisailam Road, Ranga Reddy District. The foundation stone was laid on March 12, 2018 to mark the start of construction of the plant. The company manufactures optical fibre cables at its Goa plant and at Chennai in its subsidiary - HTL. In order to reduce the input cost and overcome the worldwide shortage of fibre supply, Optical Fibre manufacturing Facility is being set up at Ranga Reddy District, Telangana as a backward integration of optical fibre cable manufacturing. The facility is expected to produce 6.4 million fibre kilometers p.a. The cost of this project is estimated to be Rs 260 crore and it will commence production from April, 2019. This is backward integration of business for the company. This manufacturing facility will be used to produce optical fibers which are mainly used for telecommunication (4G/5G) and various networks for broadband & FTTx in India and abroad. HFCL is one of India’s largest telecom network turnkey implementation companies, with wide and deep capabilities and domain expertise in rolling out advanced telecom networks. ...
198 Eros International’s Bajrangi Bhaijaan grosses over Rs 169.17 crore in China EROSMEDIA 13 Mar, 2018 Eros International Media’s Bajrangi Bhaijaan has collected over Rs 160 crore within ten days of its release in China. More than two years since it opened in India, Bajrangi Bhaijaan released in China on March 2 this year and continues to enjoy a very strong box office performance earning Rs 169.17 crore ($25.95 million) since its release. Eros International Media is a leading global company in the Indian film entertainment industry that acquires, co-produces and distributes Indian films across all available formats such as cinema, television and digital new media. ...
199 Tata Sons to sell TCS stake worth $1.25 billion to pay debt TCS 13 Mar, 2018 Tata Sons Ltd, India’s biggest business group, plans to sell $1.25 billion of its stake in Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), according to terms of the transaction. Tata Sons will sell 28.27 million shares of Asia’s largest software developer, or about 1.48% stake, according to the terms. The company plans to sell the shares at between Rs2,872 to Rs2,925 a share, the terms show. Citigroup Inc. and Morgan Stanley are the bankers to the sale. Tata Consultancy, which is 73.5% owned by its parent, rose 0.57% to Rs3051.85 on BSE earlier on Monday. Tata Sons will use the proceeds to pay creditors of its wireless division, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. The company will also use the funds to raise its stake in some of its unit in a bid to reduce cross holdings, the person said asking not to be identified as the matter is private. Tata sold Tata Teleservices Ltd’s mobile-phone operations to Bharti Airtel Ltd last year and pledged to pay the unit’s obligations. The holding company is also seeking an offshore syndicated loan, as it seeks to pay down expensive debt at telecommunications unit, people familiar with the matter said last week. Tata Sons has mandated lenders for a $1.5 billion six-year loan. Tata Sons plans to use the proceeds to repay debt of units Tata Teleservices and Tata Teleservices Maharashtra, a person said then. ...
200 India Starts Biggest Gas Distribution Auction To Make Cities Cleaner OTHER 13 Mar, 2018 India, home to cities with the world’s most toxic air, kick-started its largest auction to distribute natural gas in more urban areas as it looks to cut emissions by switching to cleaner auto and kitchen fuels. The Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board has started the bidding process by offering nearly 86 geographical areas comprising 156 districts, according to information on its website. In the last nine years, the board identified 101 such areas and awarded contracts for 52. The country ranks alongside China in having the world’s deadliest air pollution, according to a study by Boston-based Health Effects Institute. Toxic fumes, largely emitted by coal-fired power plants and automobiles, caused 1.1 million deaths each in both the neighbouring nations in 2015. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government is looking to fast-track expansion of city gas distribution grid to increase the share of natural gas in the kitchen and auto fuels mix from 6 percent to 20 percent by 2030. That would help reduce emissions as part of the global pledge to keep the average increase in temperature below 2-degree celsius. The auction will help city gas distributors like Indraprastha Gas Ltd., Gujarat Gas Ltd., and Mahanagar Gas Ltd. increase their network. The large-scale development of gas distribution grid provides tremendous growth opportunities to companies, said brokerage Antique Stock Broking. Gujarat Gas is the largest operator in India with rights in 22 districts of Gujarat, union territory of Dadra Nagar Haveli and Thane. Indraprastha Gas has presence in Delhi, Noida and Ghaziabad regions, while Mahanagar Gas distributes gas in Mumbai, Thane urban and adjoining areas and in Raigad district of Maharashtra. Indraprastha Gas could actively participate for regions offered in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to leverage existing infrastructure and connectivity in adjoining areas, Edelweiss said. Mahanagar Gas could be interested in high-potential areas like Nashik and Aurangabad, it said....
201 Bhushan Power creditors to announce highest bidder next week BHUSANSTL 10 Mar, 2018 The creditors' panel will next week declare the highest preferred bidder for acquiring the assets of Bhushan Power and Steel amid the resolution process for the debt-laden firm being marred by controversy, sources said. "The Committee of Creditors (CoC) will meet on March 14 to evaluate the criteria and declare the H1 bidder for Bhushan Power and Steel," a banker privy to the development said. UK-based Liberty House has moved NCLT to direct creditors and resolution professional (RP) to consider its bid offer to acquire the company as it was rejected by Creditors Committee. "The lenders which met on March 8 decided to go ahead with the entire process (resolution process of Bhushan Power) . When the judgement of NCLT comes then they (the lenders) will take a call accordingly," said another source close to the development. When contacted, RP Mahender Kumar Khandelwal declined to comment on the issue. Liberty House on March 9 presented its argument before the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). The next hearing of NCLT is scheduled for Tuesday in which resolution professional will respond. The RP for the debt-laden firm earlier said that the resolution plan for Bhushan Power and Steel, facing insolvency proceedings is likely to be finalised this month. With the CoC last moth rejecting the bid of Liberty House to acquire Bhushan Power and Steel Ltd, Tata SteelBSE -4.66 % and JSW Steel are now in the race for taking over the assets of the bankrupt firm. Bhushan Power and Steel owes about Rs 45,000 crore to its lenders. The source had said that while Tata Steel offered Rs 17,000 crore to the lenders as upfront amount and Rs 7,200 crore for operations of Bhushan, JSW made an offer of Rs 11,000 crore to the lenders and Rs 2,000 crore for the operations of the beleaguered power firm. Bhushan SteelBSE -6.57 % and Power was among the 12 non-performing accounts referred by RBI for NCLT proceedings. The insolvency process was filed by SBI, the lead banker of the consortium of lenders, in the case of Bhushan Steel while a similar plea was filed by Punjab National Bank against Bhushan Power and Steel. ...
202 Tata Power launches IoT based asset tracking solution TATAPOWER 10 Mar, 2018 Tata Power on Friday announced launch of its IoT based, asset-tracking, automation solution enabled by Tata Communications in Mumbai. Tata Power worked on a state-of-the-art IoT solution to create process efficiency in monitoring and harnessing insights from the data collected from an internal Geographical Information System (GIS), Tata Power said in a statement. This solution allows various features such as asset trace log on a periodic basis and Geo Fence breach alerts. It also allows information to be converted into actionable insights in real-time which in turn will help drive operational efficiencies. “We, at Tata Power, have always ensured that we are the lead adopters of technology. The asset tracking solution would enable Tata Power to improve its operational efficiency through tracking real time movement of assets,” Ashok Sethi, COO and Executive Director, Tata Power, said. VS Shridhar, Senior Vice President and Head — Internet of Things, Tata Communications, said: “Tata Communications has already lit the network for IoT across 38 cities in India and we plan to touch over 400 million customers in the first phase itself. It’s been an honour to work with Tata Power, shoulder-to-shoulder, in lighting up the Asset-tracking solution and adding momentum to this revolution in India”....
203 SAIL eyeing steel production target of 21 MT by FY21 SAIL 09 Mar, 2018 Steel Authority of India (SAIL) is eyeing steel production target of 21 million tonnes (MT) by 2020-21. The company had produced 14.496 MT of crude steel during 2016-17. The company’s modernisation and expansion programme will enable it to enormously increase its capacity and produce high margin products particularly from its new mills and market them. SAIL is India’s largest steel producing company. The company is among the five Maharatnas of the country’s Central Public Sector Enterprises. The company has five integrated steel plants, three special plants, and one subsidiary in different parts of the country. ...
204 IndiGo Said to Plan Order for Up to 50 Airbus A330 Planes INDIGO 09 Mar, 2018 IndiGo, India’s biggest airline, plans to order as many as 50 Airbus SE A330 wide-body jets as it seeks to expand beyond short-haul flights, people with knowledge of the matter said. The carrier aims to take the upgraded A330neo version of the plane, according the people, who asked not to be named as the discussions aren’t public. The deal would be worth $13 billion at list prices for the smaller of two variants, though some of the aircraft are likely to be options to be confirmed later. IndiGo is developing plans for long-haul flights after building up a fleet of more than 150 Airbus A320 narrow-body planes used within the region. The carrier, based near New Delhi, looked at the Boeing Co. 787 and Airbus’s larger A350 before settling on the A330neo, a re-engined model developed from an older design, the people said. Quick delivery times and the ease of retraining A320 pilots for the jet were a factor in the decision, one person said. A sale to Indigo would come as a shot in the arm for the A330 upgrade, which Airbus developed to fill a gap at the bottom end of the wide-body market after building the A350. The plane had won 214 orders through February, compared with almost 1,500 for the original model and around 850 for the A350. All commitments are for the bigger -900 version after Hawaiian Airlines canceled a deal for six smaller -800s last month. Shares of the Indian carrier fell as much as 1.8 percent on Friday in Mumbai. An order announcement from IndiGo could come as early as June, one of the people said. Representatives for the carrier didn’t respond to requests for comments. A spokesman for Airbus said that the Toulouse, France-based planemaker is in regular contact with all of its customers, while declining to comment further. IndiGo, a brand of InterGlobe Aviation Ltd., has shown interest in unprofitable national carrier Air India Ltd., though the budget specialist has said it intends to commence low-cost, long-distance flights with or without a takeover. The carrier still has about 400 more A320neos to come. ...
205 Most Expensive Bank Said to Pick $2.4 Billion Sale Arrangers HDFCBANK 09 Mar, 2018 India’s HDFC Bank Ltd., the world’s most-expensive lender, has appointed arrangers including Bank of America Corp, Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse Group AG for a 155 billion rupee ($2.38 billion) planned share sale, people with knowledge of the matter said. The lender has also appointed JPMorgan Chase & Co., Edelweiss Financial Services Ltd., IIFL Holdings Ltd. and JM Financial Ltd. for the offering, the people said asking not to be identified because the information is private. The sale process will begin as soon as the lender gets the required regulatory approvals, they said. HDFC Bank plans to raise the bulk of the funds from international investors through a sale of American depository receipts, with the rest to come from selling stock in India, the people said. The money will be used to boost the lender’s capital buffers and support its growth plans for several years, Paresh Sukthankar, deputy managing director of HDFC Bank said in January. Representatives for HDFC Bank, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, IIFL and Edelweiss declined to comment, while Credit Suisse, JPMorgan and JM Financial didn’t immediately respond to emails. HDFC Bank has a price-to-book multiple of 5.16, making it the most expensive among lenders across the globe with at least $50 billion in market value, data compiled by Bloomberg shows. The lender’s board approved in December a fund raising of as much as 240 billion rupees through a share sale. Parent company Housing Development Finance Corp. will invest about 85 billion rupees, it said at the time. The Mumbai-based bank, helmed by Chief Executive Officer Aditya Puri, has consistently maintained a low bad-loan ratio by limiting its exposure to heavily-indebted Indian corporates and lending to the country’s growing middle class. The lender, which has the biggest weighting in the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex, fell 0.2 percent to 1,848.70 rupees as of 9:28 a.m. in Mumbai on Friday, paring its gains for the past year to 33 percent. HDFC Bank had a capital adequacy ratio of 15.5 percent as of Dec. 31 and a gross bad-loan ratio of 1.3 percent, exchange filings show. That compares with 13.9 percent and 10.2 percent, respectively, for India’s banking system as a whole at end of September....
206 BHEL wins Rs 11,700 crore order to set up plant in Jharkhand BHEL 09 Mar, 2018 Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL) has won a Rs 11,700 crore order for setting up a 3x800 MW supercritical thermal power plant in Jharkhand. The order for setting up the 3x800 MW Patratu Super Thermal Power Station Expansion, Phase-I (3x 800 MW) has been placed on BHEL by Patratu Vidyut Utpadan Nigam (PVUNL – a subsidiary of NTPC in Joint Venture with Jharkhand Bijli Vitran Nigam). Significantly, this is the single largest order ever placed by NTPC or its subsidiaries and the second largest order ever won by BHEL. Located at Patratu in Ramgarh district of Jharkhand, the project will be executed by BHEL on Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) basis. Key equipment for the project will be manufactured at BHEL's Trichy, Haridwar, Hyderabad, Ranipet, Bhopal, Bengaluru and Jhansi plants, while the company's Power Sector – Western Region division will be responsible for construction and installation activities at the site. ...
207 Marico sells entire equity investment in Bellezimo MARICO 08 Mar, 2018 Marico has sold back its entire equity investment in Bellezimo Professionale Products amounting to Rs 1.6 crore to the Promoter of Bellezimo. Earlier in October 2015, the company had made investment in equity share capital of Bellezimo, a company marketing skin care products to cater to Salons channel, equivalent to 45% of the issued and paid-up share capital of Bellezimo. Marico is one of India’s leading Consumer Products Group, in the global beauty and wellness space. Its products are sold in India and about 25 other countries in Asia and Africa. ...
208 CCI imposes fine of Rs 39.81 crore on Jet Airways JETAIRWAYS 08 Mar, 2018 The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has imposed a fine of Rs 39.81 crore on Jet Airways for unfair business practices with respect to fixing fuel surcharge on cargo transport. The watchdog has also directed Jet Airways to cease and desist from anti-competitive practices. The order has come on a complaint filed by Express Industry Council of India against the airlines alleging cartelisation. Jet Airways is India’s premier international airline, which operates flights to India and overseas. The company’s robust domestic India network spans the length and breadth of the country covering metro cities, state capitals and emerging destinations. ...
209 Tata Steel emerges as top bidder for Bhushan Steel TATASTEEL 08 Mar, 2018 Tata Steel has received a formal communication from the Resolution Professional of Bhushan Steel (BSL) that it has been identified as the highest evaluated compliant resolution applicant to acquire controlling stake of BSL under the Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process (CIRP) of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code 2016 (IBC), as decided in the meeting of the Committee of Creditors (CoC) of BSL on March 6, 2018. The advisors to the CoC and Resolution Professional of BSL are currently in discussions with Tata Steel on the resolution plan. The next steps in the process will be as per the stipulations under the CIRP of the IBC. Tata Steel, the flagship company of the Tata group is the first integrated steel plant in Asia and is now the world’s second most geographically diversified steel producer and a Fortune 500 Company. ...
210 Pidilite Industries enters into collaboration with Jowat PIDILITIND 08 Mar, 2018 Pidilite Industries has entered into collaboration with Jowat SE, a German family-owned enterprise and one of the leading suppliers of industrial adhesives worldwide. As part of the collaboration, the company will now exclusively handle sales and distribution of the entire range of Jowat adhesives in India and other neighbouring countries including Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Nepal. In addition to this, the two companies have also entered into a technical collaboration encompassing the high growth, specialized category of Hot Melt adhesives. This will provide a comprehensive range of Thermoplastic Hot Melt adhesives for use in several industrial and modular and other wooden furniture segments. Pidilite Industries is engaged in manufacturing consumer and specialities chemicals in India. Its products include adhesives and sealants, construction and paint chemicals, automotive chemicals, art materials, industrial adhesives, industrial and textile resins and organic pigments and preparations. ...
211 India Sugar Exports May Climb to Four-Year High on Record Output OTHER 08 Mar, 2018 India will probably export more sugar than previously forecast as higher yields in some key growing regions are seen boosting output in the world’s top consumer. Mills will attempt to ship about 2 million metric tons of sugar this year as domestic production is likely to climb to a record, leaving enough surplus for exports, said Abinash Verma, director general of the Indian Sugar Mills Association. That would be highest since 2013-14 when India shipped 2.13 million tons. Last month, Verma said that millers will try to export 1.5 million tons in six to eight months, raising his estimate from January forecast of 1 million tons. “We could explore the possibility of exporting white sugar in the next six to seven months with the government’s help,” Verma said in a phone interview on Wednesday. Mills will attempt to export about 4 million tons of raw sugar in the next season starting in October to keep the inventory under control, he said. Global sugar prices have tumbled about 28 percent in the past year on a global surplus as production is set to increase in Europe and India. ISMA raised its 2017-18 sugar output estimate by 13 percent to an all-time high of 29.5 million tons on higher yields especially in Maharashtra and Karnataka, a second revision in less than two months. The current planting trend shows that sugar production in 2018-19 may be even higher than this season, he said. India imposes a duty of 20 percent on sugar exports, which millers are seeking to get abolished. Without the duty, an exporter may lose about 10 rupees (15 cents) a kilogram at current global prices, Verma said. Shippers could seek to export even at a loss as they would sell the remaining quantity in the domestic market at higher prices, he said. Even an increase of one rupee per kilogram in local prices would help millers recover losses from exports, Verma said. The government is considering providing some incentives for exports, including abolishing the 20 percent duty on overseas sales, according to a government official, who asked not to be identified citing rules....
212 ITC to ramp up fresh vegetables, fruits supply in seven metros ITC 08 Mar, 2018 Diversified company ITC, which recently forayed into the packaged fresh fruits and vegetable segment, plans to ramp up the distribution of its brand Farmland in the top seven metros in the next two to three years. The company had last year, launched packaged potatoes in four variants in Delhi and recently expanded this range to apples with the assurance of “no wax” under the Farmland brand. S Sivakumar, Group Head-Agri & IT Businesses, ITC, said: “The potential in the packaged fresh fruits and vegetables is huge. We are focussing our efforts on development of this category. We will add more products under brand Farmland as there are more vegetables and fruits lined up for launch. We will expand the distribution of Farmland to the top seven metros in the next two to three years.” He said that the company is working on adding several other vegetables to the brand, including green vegetables which will require cold chain infrastructure. In terms of packaged fresh fruits, the company is experimenting with fruits such as mangoes, pomegranates and bananas. “We will also look at adding more variants of potatoes and apples this year too. Since we have developed the supply chain and channel strategy in Delhi, we will initially focus on Delhi before adding more cities,” he added. Under brand ITC MasterChef, the company had earlier launched frozen prawns and spices and has recently added dehydrated onions. “As of now, we have launched ITC MasterChef Smart Onions which are dehydrated red onions for institutional consumers. We will look at launching it in smaller packs for the B2C segment in the next 6-12 months,” Sivakumar added. Replying to a query on the impact on private players due to higher MSP on commodities such as wheat, he said: “The national priority of raising farmers’ income will mean some degree of higher pricing for consumers. Therefore, private players will play a key role in bringing in efficiencies with more food processing so that farmers get more value for their produce and consumers do not get penalised with higher prices. ”...
213 NCLT halts Reliance Infratel’s asset sale RELINFRA 08 Mar, 2018 The Mumbai bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on Wednesday directed Reliance Infratel Ltd, a subsidiary of Reliance Communications Ltd (RCom), to stay the sale of its assets until 13 March. The tribunal was hearing a petition filed by offshore investors of Reliance Infratel led by HSBC Daisy Investments (Mauritius) Ltd, which are alleging oppression of minority shareholders and mismanagement. After hearing the arguments of Reliance Infratel, overseas investors and the joint lenders’ forum of RCom, the NCLT division bench of B.S.V. Prakash Kumar and Ravikumar Duraisamy reserved its final order, to be released on 12 March. This might create a minor hiccup as the Anil Ambani-owned company has entered into a binding agreement to sell off parts of RCom’s assets to Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd, controlled by Anil Ambani’s older brother Mukesh Ambani. An RCom spokesperson declined to comment. Earlier on 28 December, both companies in separate statements said that Reliance Jio had emerged as the highest bidder for the wireless spectrum, tower, optical fibre network and media convergence node assets of RCom. The companies did not disclose the deal value. HSBC Daisy-led investors argued that the company in which they had invested—Reliance Infratel—would become defunct because it would not have any assets left. “When we had invested Rs1,100 crore in the company, under the agreement, we had the right to know about any changes that (the) company does, but we were not aware of anything that the company did,” argued their counsel Iqbal Chagla. He further argued that out of the total debt of RCom of around Rs45,000 crore, Reliance Infratel had debt of mere Rs3,400 crore, while the valuation of the latter’s tower business alone was Rs11,000 crore when its parent was in talks with Brookfield to sell assets. “Currently, all the assets including those owned by Reliance Infratel are mortgaged and today, if the assets are not sold, the lenders will approach the tribunal under insolvency and bankruptcy code to recover their dues,” argued Alpana Ghone, counsel for Reliance Infratel. “The entire procedure was conducted by the joint lenders’ forum where Reliance Jio was the highest bidder.” According to Ghone, the sale of RCom group assets will fetch around Rs24,707 crore, out of which the assets of Reliance Infratel will fetch around Rs8,000 crore. Ghone also argued that the valuations of the telecom tower company had gone down because anchor tenant RCom had decided to terminate the rental agreement, and any delay might further dent valuation. Earlier, on 20 February, Reliance Infratel had agreed to share details of the deal to sell its assets to Jio with shareholders led by HSBC Daisy. These investors are seeking an exit from Reliance Infratel at fair market value. In July 2007, HSBC Daisy Investment along with a clutch of other investors had invested around Rs1,100 crore in Reliance Infratel for about 5% stake, which has now come down to 4.26%. Appearing for the joint lenders’ forum, senior counsel Birendra Saraf argued that RCom’s assets, including the tower business, are a pledge and the entire plan was monitored by the lenders; hence, nobody can see any asset in isolation. Late on Tuesday, in an exchange filing, RCom said that it had appealed in the Bombay high court against an arbitration court which restrained it from sale, transfer or mortgage of its assets. The arbitration court was ruling on an appeal by Swedish telecom vendor Ericsson, an operational creditor of RCom....
214 Tata Power achieves highest gross power generation in February in 2018 TATAPOWER 08 Mar, 2018 Tata Power has registered the highest ever gross electricity generation of February 2018 at 4647 million units. At 11:27 hrs Tata Power Company was quoting at Rs 78.10, down Rs 0.95, or 1.20 percent. The share touched its 52-week high Rs 101.75 and 52-week low Rs 75.90 on 05 January, 2018 and 11 August, 2017, respectively. Currently, it is trading 23.24 percent below its 52-week high and 2.9 percent above its 52-week low. Market capitalisation stands at Rs 21,124.28 crore....
215 ITC’s Aashirvaad becomes Rs 4,000 cr brand, forays into new segments ITC 07 Mar, 2018 FMCG major ITC today said its Aashirvaad atta has become a Rs 4,000-crore brand in the wheat flour market, with around 28 per cent share in the branded segment. The company as part of its expansion plans is also expanding brand Aashirvaad into new segments as milk and ghee in the dairy category, besides spices, instant mixes, ready meals etc. “Aashirvaad is India’s number one branded packaged atta with a consumer spend of over Rs 4,200 crore,” ITC Divisional Chief Executive Foods Division Hemant Malik told PTI. He further said: “The brand has been growing at the rate of 16-17 per cent CAGR over the last many years and we hope to continue this growth momentum.” Market share In India, branded wheat flour market is growing rapidly; and presently, around 60 per cent of households purchase wheat, 25 per cent buy loose wheat flour and balance 15 per cent buys packaged wheat flour, Malik said. “We are having 28 per cent share of that (packaged wheat flour),” he claimed. The company, he said, is now offering customised atta blends in wheat flour category in accordance with regional preferences; and in health segment, it has sugar release control atta, and multi grains etc. “We have customised blends for different regions. We have also crafted variants in the health and wellness space which includes Aashirvaad Multigrain atta and Aashirvaad Sugar Release control atta,” he said. Aashirwad brand expansion The company has extended Aashirwad brand into cow ghee and also launched Aashirwad milk last month in Munger at Bihar. “Now the brand Aashirvaad has spices and salt. All the basic staple food, we believe that Aashirvaad brand has a great efficiency,” Malik said adding that the company is leveraging its network of e-Chaupal and chaupal sagar to source quality products from the farmers. The company is also evaluating some other segments like maida, suji, besan for expansion of Aashirwad brand. “In the coming years, we could look at products as maida, suji, besan etc,” said Malik. Besides, ITC also exports Aashirwad atta to 32 countries, including US, Canada and Middle East, targeting the Indian diaspora. The export is presently about 7 per cent of total sales. Fake videos on social media Over the recent videos being circulated in social media platforms such as Whatsapp and Facebook alleging the company mixes plastic in Aashirvaad atta, ITC said those are “malicious” and are “wrongly” claimed. “What is being shown as plastic in these mischievous videos is actually wheat protein which is a mandated component of atta by the FSSAI. Protein is an integral part of any atta/wheat. This protein is what binds the atta. Without this protein, it is not possible to roll chapatis,” Malik said. The company had filed police complaints in Kolkata and Hyderabad. “There is a court order issued in ITC’s favour which restrains the circulation of such fake videos on social media,” he added. PTI KRH MKJ 03061824...
216 Indian Energy Exchange to launch spot gas exchange for marginal fields IEX 07 Mar, 2018 The Indian Energy Exchange (IEX), the country’s largest power trading platform, is looking at launching a spot gas exchange for trading of natural gas produced by marginal fields. Speaking to Business Standard, S N Goel, managing director and chief executive officer, IEX, said the company was in discussion with stakeholders on the proposal. “There is a disparity in gas prices. In India, the domestic gas price is $3.5 per mmbtu, while the LNG rate is $9 per mmbtu. If there is a market, the rate would be $7-8 per mmbtu,” he said. Mmbtu stands for one million British thermal units (BTU), a measure of energy content in a fuel. Goel said a higher price would help operators produce gas from the marginal fields. Since output from these fields was less, gas production did not make commercial sense at a lower rate, he added. “There is a lot of synergy between a power and gas exchange. Since we are already operating a power exchange for the last 10 years, we think we are good for setting up a gas exchange,” he said. Currently, natural gas derivatives are being traded on commodity platforms such as the NCDEX. If the IEX’s plan succeeds, this will be the first spot gas market in the country. The move comes at a time when gas-based power generation is facing fuel crisis. Of the 24,150 megawatts (Mw) of gas grid-connected power generation capacity in the country, 14,305 Mw has no supply of domestic gas. The remaining (9,845 Mw) is working at a sub-optimal level. The Centre recently conveyed to private power producers that natural gas would no longer be allocated, and that they would have to bid to buy the fuel. “We are working with different stakeholders to understand what we need to do. It will be a privately owned exchange, so you might see participants like GAIL. But it is all in the discussion stage,” said Goel. The IEX, which recently concluded its IPO listing, is looking to offer several new products to the electricity sector. “One opportunity is in the forwards and future markets in electricity, which is not there in India as yet. The government and the regulator did look into it, but there was not enough liquidity in the power trading market. Now, with an increase in liquidity, the discussion has started again, and I think in the next 1 to 2 years, there will be opportunity in this as well,” he said. Liquidity or volume of power trading at the spot market has seen a spurt over the past year. With states reluctant to sign long-term agreements for power purchases, and thermal power generators reeling from demand crunch, the spot market has emerged as a necessary tool. Volumes during the nine months of the current fiscal year grew 32 per cent over the corresponding period of 2016-17. Goel said the company was confident of 25 per cent year-on-year growth by the end of the financial year. “We estimate that the variable demand over and above the base load of all the states would come to the spot market. In the next 4-5 years, the spot market will have close to 10 per cent of the power generation market with trading of 125 billion units,” Goel said, citing a CRISIL study that was commissioned by IEX. He said the spot market would soon be source agnostic, like the mature electricity market globally. “With large renewable capacity being built, a liquid market is being discussed actively with the government and the regulator. We need a good short-term market to meet the variability of the renewable. Lack of balancing power begets the need of a dynamic spot market,” said Goel....
217 Torrent Pharma readying a deal to acquire Sanofi’s European generics business TORNTPHARM 07 Mar, 2018 Torrent Pharma is readying a bid of EUR2bn (Rs16,000cr) to acquire Sanofi’s European generics business Zentiva N.V., as per the news reports. The news also indicated that the funding arrangement is being made several domestic and foreign banks and this will be arranged by the end of March 28, 2018. Zentiva was acquired by Sanofi in 2009 for EUR2.6bn. This generics company is the third largest generics company in Europe. Zentiva currently operates in 50 markets and provides medicines in 15 different key therapeutic areas such as cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, anti-inflammatory, pain management, metabolic, blood disorders, etc. Sanofi’s generics business recorded sales of EUR1.8bn in 2017 (yoy decline of 4%) of which EUR1bn came from advanced markets (yoy decline of 4.6%) and EUR758mn came from the emerging markets (yoy decline of 3.4%). As per media reports, the target business i.e. European generics business reported EBITDA of $150mn which should value the company at 16.5x of its 2017 EBITDA. Torrent is currently valued at 17.5x of its FY18E EV/EBITDA. Torrent generates EBITDA margins of more than 22% while Zentiva reported EBITDA margin of ~12%. Torrent already has a business in Germany (Rs241cr revenue in Q3FY18, ~16% of its total revenue) and it may be trying to scale up this business through the acquisition. The deal on the valuation front looks bit expensive. Torrent Pharma in January, had of its fundraising plans. This fundraising could be either in form of issuance of equity shares (including convertible/non-convertible debentures/bonds) through QIP or depository receipts or by way of private placement or any other mode. Torrent Pharma in Q2FY13 reported total debt of Rs2,607cr with the cash and investment of Rs1,947cr. Debt to equity ratio stood at 0.57 which is comfortable. Torrent has recently acquired the domestic business of Unichem laboratories and the same was funded by mix of internal accruals and borrowings....
218 Government May Revaluate Bank Recap After PNB Fraud OTHER 07 Mar, 2018 The government may re-evaluate its bank recapitalisation plan after the Rs 12,700-crore fraud at the Punjab National Bank and the possibility of more public-sector lenders coming under the central bank’s prompt corrective action, a senior government official told BloombergQuint requesting anonymity. Of the earmarked Rs 2.11-lakh crore plan, banks are expected to raise Rs 58,000 crore from the market. That would be difficult after the fraud at the second-largest public-sector lender and if more banks come under the PCA, the first official quoted above said. PCA imposes restrictions on a bank’s lending activity if it breaches thresholds for bad loans, weak capital levels and low return on assets. The government planned to infuse about Rs 1.2 lakh crore in the next year financial year starting April. That will be assessed again and no estimate has been made on the additional capital as of now, he said. Since the ongoing financial year is almost over and an infusion of about Rs 88,139 crore has been announced, no changes would be made for year ending March 31, the official said. Shares of PNB have fallen more than 31 percent since it reported that jeweller Nirav Modi and his firms obtained loans overseas on fraudulent guarantees issued through the bank’s system. The Nifty PSU Bank Index has since declined more than 8 percent. India’s public-sector banks, according to RBI data, accounted for nearly 90 percent of more than Rs 8 lakh crore bad loans as of September. Already, 11 of India’s 21 listed government-owned banks are under PCA. Five more—Andhra Bank, Canara Bank, Union Bank of India, Punjab National Bank and Punjab and Sind Bank—are expected to be brought under the prompt corrective action framework, according to ratings agency ICRA. Such banks face restrictions on lending and expansion. The government had in October last year announced the Rs 2.11-lakh crore fund infusion over two years to boost capital of the lenders. A bulk of this, or Rs 1.35 lakh crore, would be raised through recapitalisation bonds. The rest would be met through budgetary allocation or market borrowing. The actual recapitalisation required would depend on the growth banks are targeting and how much they plan to raise from the market or through selling non-core assets, Kartik Srinivasan, senior vice-president at ICRA, told BloombergQuint. There could be some issuances by a few banks to raise money from the market, but not all public-sector lenders would be able to do that, he said. The government will take a relook at the recapitalisation plan in three months to decide if it needs any change in three months, said another senior Finance Ministry official. He said it was too early to comment further. A third official pointed out that market conditions in the next financial year could turn more conducive for banks to raise funds, indicating that any change in plan would need to factor that in. The Economic Survey 2017-18 tabled last month had also pointed out that expeditious resolution of stressed assets through the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code may require the government to provide more resources to state-run lenders, especially if the haircuts required are greater than previously expected, the ongoing asset quality recognition uncovers more stressed assets, and if new accounting standards, or Ind-AS, are implemented. Some clarity on capital requirements of public sector banks could come in about a month’s time as they get a better idea on the recoveries and haircuts that lenders will have to take from the PNB fraud and the insolvency cases, said Srinivasan....
219 Rural Stocks Are Trade of Decade to Old Bridge on Modi Farm Push OTHER 07 Mar, 2018 Kenneth Andrade, who made a name for himself in the late 2000s backing India’s consumer stocks, says the next big opportunity is companies tied to the rural economy. Makers of farm products such as seeds, fertilizers and agrichemicals have plenty of policy support as government measures such as providing crop insurance and depositing subsidies directly into bank accounts should fatten disposable income among growers. “Any part of the economy that gets an enormous amount of money usually creates an industry by itself, where the allocated capital creates an output,” Andrade, founder and chief investment officer of Old Bridge Capital Management Pvt., said in an interview. “You will see disproportionate amount of capital getting reallocated into the rural economy. That is our larger play.” The government in its Feb. 1 budget proposed increasing purchase prices for crops to more than 50 percent of the input cost, a move aimed at fulfilling Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s promise of doubling farm incomes by 2022. The ruling party faces general elections in 2019. The plan “resets the farm economics” said Andrade, who oversees about 30 billion rupees ($463 million) across three funds. He quit IDFC Asset Management Co. in 2015 after spending a decade as head of investments. Andrade was rated as one of India’s best mid-cap managers by Morningstar Inc. for his bets on stocks including Page Industries Ltd., which sells Jockey International Inc.’s innerwear. Page has soared more than 40 times over the past decade. Below are some of the views he shared at the interview: Why bet on the rural economy? “Nearly 70 percent of the economy is in that part of the world, contributing to 30 percent of GDP. India cannot grow as an economy till you even out this imbalance. “A lot of this won’t happen in a year or two or three, but maybe over decade, where you bring 70 percent of your population into the earnings cycle.” Which companies benefit from a buoyant rural demand? “Everything from firms that make tractors and tillers to agrichemicals and crop input producers. There are only 30-35 companies in this universe. “If you’re able to identify the right part of the cycle, you will end up buying companies at a price that you want.” Andrade declined to name stocks, citing client confidentiality. Which other businesses are you investing in? “We look for industries where the capital-expenditure cycle has slowed or gone to zero, while demand is still consistent. One example are power generators. “The biggest spend in this business happened from 2010 to 2016, where the producers added about 300 gigawatts capacity. Today, only about 10 percent of it is idle.” What is your outlook on India company earnings? “In the PE ratio, I can only have an outlook on the denominator i.e. earnings. And that number looks fairly buoyant going into the next couple of years. “Earnings will rise in ‘high teens’ annually up to March 2020.” Will election outcome impact investor sentiment? “We’ve been through multiple governments. The most fortunate part of politics in India is that big policy initiatives have always continued. “Luckily for us, it’s never been a ‘stop-start-stop-start’ kind of an economy.”...
220 JSW Energy acquires JSW Electric Vehicles JSWENERGY 06 Mar, 2018 JSW Energy has acquired JSW Electric Vehicles on March 5, 2018. Consequent to this acquisition, JSW Electric Vehicles is now a wholly owned subsidiary of the company. The acquisition is part of diversification strategy of JSW Energy to foray into Electric Vehicles, Energy Storage Systems and Charging Infrastructure which will be housed under the acquired entity - JSW Electric Vehicles. JSW Energy, part of the JSW Group, is a growing energy company. The Group has diversified interests in carbon steel, power, mining, industrial gases, port facilities, aluminium, cement and information technology. ...
221 FDA Woes Hit Aurobindo Pharma As Unit 4 Gets Nine Observations AUROPHARMA 06 Mar, 2018 Aurobindo Pharma Ltd. received nine observations from the U.S. drug regulator for one of its Hyderabad units. That’s worrying for two reasons. One, it’s an injectables facility that’s required to maintain the highest standards; and two, several drug approvals from it are pending in the U.S., the company’s biggest market. The observations for Unit 4 in Hyderabad relate to equipment and cleanliness, employees training, quality control and computer controls, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Form 483 reviewed by BloombergQuint. Aurobindo Pharma will now have to respond with corrective measures to get the plant cleared. These are not just procedural observations as the company reported earlier, but a strong criticism of its sterile manufacturing unit, especially regarding inadequately designed equipment, untrained staff and maintenance, said Amit Rajan, managing director of quality and regulatory consultant Prosfora Technologies. The company would require robust commitments from the management to move past these observations, he said. The remark on computerised system management are unfortunate given the number of inspections the company has faced from U.S. FDA, he said. Unit 4 is one of the most important plants for Aurobindo Pharma, contributing 15 percent of the total U.S. sales. More importantly, the next leg of growth will come from this plant as it has several pending approvals. All high-margin injectable products are filed from the Hyderabad facility, the company said in its post-earnings conference call. It’s looking at sales of $180-185 million from the unit by the end of the ongoing financial year and increase to about $250 million by the year through March 2020. Repeated attempts by BloombergQuint to reach the company over the phone and email remain unanswered. Aurobindo Pharma will now have to respond to the U.S. FDA with corrective measures. If it doesn’t respond do that appropriately, then the plant can get a warning letter, Gurudatta GG, chief executive officer and director at consultant Estima Pharma Solutions, said. The regulator doesn’t approve filings from a plant that has received a warning letter. While the observations do not point to any data integrity, the U.S. FDA would be more concerned as the issues relate to an injectables plant, which is expected to maintain the highest level of quality. “The U.S. FDA will be stringent in terms of future course as observations relate to cleanliness in an injectables plant,” Amey Chalke, analyst at HDFC Securities said, stressing that a depends on on the company’s response. “Don’t see an immediate warning letter as the company will have time to respond. It may get a warning letter if the responses are not appropriate.”...
222 Sun Pharma’s Halol Plant May Get FDA Clearance Soon SUNPHARMA 06 Mar, 2018 The regulatory issues at Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.’s critical Halol plant may soon be resolved. In a recent inspection the U.S. drug regulator found no data integrity issues, and its observations are mostly to do with procedural matters, according to the information on the Form 483 on its website. The three observations issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration inspectors are focused on equipment and plant cleanliness and hence addressable, said Gurudatta GG, chief executive officer at consulting firm Estima Pharma Solutions in a comment to BloombergQuint. The 3 Observations Separate or defined areas to prevent contamination or mix ups are deficient regarding operations related to aseptic processing of drug products. Written procedures for cleaning and maintenance fail to include description in sufficient detail of the methods of disassembling and reassembling equipment as necessary to assure proper cleaning and maintenance. Written procedures are lacking - which describe in sufficient detail the sampling, testing, approval and rejection of drug product containers and closures. Simply put - the first observation speaks about rough, cracked and uneven surfaces that made cleaning difficult. The observation also talks of problems of airflow returning to the sterile area and the lack of use of contact plates. The second observation is regarding unclean gaskets while the third refers to deficiencies in the written procedure regarding cleaning and operating of the vial machine. The Halol observations require remediation but there will likely be no re-inspection, according to analyst Anubhav Aggarwal of Credit Suisse. The observation on air-flow studies will likely require an FDA review post remediation, the research note authored by Aggarwal said. Both Gurudatta and Aggarwal said that the plant may get clearance in four to six months. BloombergQuint had on March 5 reported on the likelihood of the FDA’s observations being procedural in nature. Why Halol Matters The clearance will allow the Halol plant to speed up several complex generic filings and ramp up existing products in the U.S. The launch of key drugs like Xelpros for Glaucoma and Elepsia used for epilepsy, developed by Sun Pharma Advanced Research Co. Ltd., also depends on clearance to the Halol plant. Delay in plant clearance will cost Sun Pharma opportunities in the U.S. due to delayed drug approvals and its earnings growth will depend on a single product, according to a recent Morgan Stanley report. The Halol plant’s contribution to the company’s U.S. sales declined to 11 percent from 22 percent before its regulatory troubles began, according to a CLSA report. Its share in overall sales dropped from 12 percent to 4 percent. Part of that can be ascribed to an increase in the overall size of the company due to the Ranbaxy acquisition. But there’s also been a decline in sales from about $350 million to $150 million in three years through March 2017....
223 Arcelor, Nippon Steel Join Forces to Bid for Insolvent Essar ESTL 05 Mar, 2018 The world’s biggest steelmaker, ArcelorMittal, and Japan’s top mill will form a partnership to bid for Essar Steel India Ltd., the insolvent producer that could fetch at least $6 billion. Arcelor and Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. said in a statement they have joined the bidding for Essar, which is on the block after entering an Indian government-mandated process designed to clean-up companies that can’t repay their debts. Luxembourg-based Arcelor will be the majority partner, Kosei Shindo, president of Nippon Steel, said at a briefing in Tokyo, describing the venture as “almost 50:50.” He said the bidders want to target demand from the construction industry, which is set benefit from a massive infrastructure push by India’s government that could triple the nation’s steel capacity. The joint acquisition by the companies depends on their plan being selected and accepted by Indian courts. Essar is the largest distressed steelmaker being sold under the program, and is also the subject of a bid from Russia’s state-controlled VTB Group. Arcelor and Nippon Steel have operated joint ventures in America going back to 1987, and partnered on another U.S. purchase in 2014. In the statement, Lakshmi Mittal, Arcelor’s chief executive officer, promised a “rapid turn-around in Essar’s performance,” citing “a rich history of positive collaboration” with the Tokyo-based company. Advisers evaluating offers for Essar had recommended last month that both Arcelor and VTB should be disqualified after querying whether they met the bidding criteria. ...
224 Bajaj Corp sharpens rural focus to drive volumes BAJAJCORP 05 Mar, 2018 Fast moving consumer goods company Bajaj Corp is sharpening focus on rural areas to drive volumes and is also scouting for acquisitions in the personal care category, a company official has said. With a rural focused-Budget, the company expects demand from the hinterlands to revive in the upcoming financial year. The company has been witnessing tepid growth in the rural markets since the past many months. “Our growth is coming largely from urban markets now and the growth rate in rural markets is a lot slower since the past 18 months or so. This year our focus will be to both sustain urban growth at the same time also accelerate growth in rural markets,” Sandeep Verma, sales and marketing president at Bajaj Corp told PTI. He said the prof-rual budget coupled with a good monsoon should bring back rural demand. “It is not as though rural market is de-growing, it is just not growing as fast as urban. Till two years ago, rural was growing at 10 percentage points higher than the urban markets but it has now slowed down. We expect rural demand to come back in FY19.” Urban areas contribute 60 per cent of its sales and the rest come from the hinterlands. Rural sales To drive rural sales, the Shishir Bajaj-led company is allocating a large portion of its marketing budget for. “We are spending a huge amount for rural marketing. We are over indexing rural to 1.5 times when it comes to TV spends and even some of the other above-the-line spends,” he said. The Rs 800-crore company normally spends 16-18 per cent of revenue on advertising and marketing. Personal product Bajaj Corp, whose popular products in the hair oil segment include Bajaj Almond Drops, Bajaj Kailash Parbat and Bajaj Brahmi Amla, is also planning to amplify its lower priced products in the rural market. “Our Re 1 packet contributes to 40 per cent of our rural sales by volume. We are going to focus on it a lot more and drive its depth. Next financial year we would be launching Rs 10 almond oil in rural and semi-urban markets,” he said. It has also increased its direct coverage in rural areas by 20 per cent after GST by appointing more distributors, direct sales agents. The Rs 6,500-crore hair oil industry is growing at 7.5 per cent and Bajaj Corp aims to increase its market share to 16-16.5 per cent in FY19 from 14.5 per cent now. The company focuses on the Rs 4,000-crore valued added hair oil category that is growing at 13 per cent and would be launching a new hair oil next quarter. It recently launched Coco Jasmine hair oil in Maharashtra, making its foray into the coconut hair oil space. It had acquired NoMarks brand from Ozone Ayurvedics in 2013 to enter the skin-care and Verma said they are looking at inorganic growth opportunities in the personal-care segment. Acquisitions “We are open to acquisitions in the personal care category if they have some sort of synergy with our distribution system,” he said, adding he expects NoMarks to become a Rs 100-crore brand in the next two years. “The anti-marks category us growing at 30 per cent and is a Rs 350-380 crore category. We will continue to invest very strongly in the NoMarks and we will have new products in the skincare segment under the NoMarks brand,” he said, adding in FY17 it contributed Rs 28 crore to the turnover....
225 Tata Motors launches special edition of Zest at Rs 7.53 lakh TATAMOTORS 05 Mar, 2018 Tata Motors today said it has launched a special edition of its compact sedan Zest, with 1.3 litre diesel engine and 13 additional features, priced at Rs 7.53 lakh ((ex-showroom Delhi). The Zest Premio, which was launched on March 1, has been made available across all Tata Motors sales outlets in the country, a release said. Tata Motors has so far sold more than 85,000 units of Zest since its launch in August 2014. "We are confident that this (special edition of Zest) will attract our customers for its value proposition. With more than 85,000 customers of Zest, we expect to strike a new chord with young and aspirant customers," Tata Motors' president for passenger vehicle business unit Mayank Pareek was quoted as saying in the release. The company will continue to gauge changing customer preferences and keep introducing new features in its products to give the customers enhanced value, he added. The Zest Premio comes in with first-in-segment premium features such as dual tone roof in glossy black, piano black hued outside mirrors on the exterior, and a chic tan finished mid pad on the dashboard in the interior, among others, the release said. Tata Motors reported a 38 per cent jump in domestic sales at 58,993 units in February, driven by continued strong sales in commercial and passenger vehicle (PV) segments in the domestic market. The PV sales stood at 17,771 units as against 12,272 units in February 2017, up 45 per cent....
226 India’s Economy Continues To Rebound OTHER 01 Mar, 2018 India’s economy picked up pace in the October-December period as it continues to recover from the twin disruptions of demonetisation and a nationwide goods and services tax. The gross value added growth stood at 6.7 percent in the third quarter of 2017-18 compared with a revised 6.9 percent in the same period last year and a revised 6.2 percent in the previous quarter, according to data released by the Central Statistics Office today. A Bloomberg poll of economists had pegged GVA growth at 6.7 percent. GVA has become a preferred measure of economic growth as it strips out the impact of indirect taxes and subsidies. The more commonly tracked gross domestic product growth stood at 7.2 percent compared with a revised 6.5 percent in the second quarter. “The shadows of demonetisation and GST may be behind us,” said Madan Sabnavis, chief economist at CARE Ratings said. While the disruptions may be over, it may be too soon to say the economy is accelerating, he said. The Indian economy was hit by twin shocks of a cash purge and GST over the past 18 months, disrupting economic activity which has only now started to rebound. A modest revival in the investment cycle along with a pick-up in exports is expected to support this “nascent” recovery, the RBI had said. India is now expected to grow faster than estimated in 2017-18. GVA growth for the full year is seen at 6.4 percent compared to 6.1 percent forecast in the first advance estimates. GDP too is expected to grow 6.6 percent in the year ending March 2018—10 basis points higher than January estimates. That may provide some reprieve to Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of the Lok Sabha election in 2019. Yet, the expected GVA growth is still lower than the 6.7 percent India recorded in the previous year and the GDP estimate is 50 basis-points lower than last year. “Something substantial will need to be done next year if the government wants to cross the 7 percent mark,” said Sabnavis. It will still be too early to rejoice and think that we’re on an accelerated growth path. A lot would depend upon how demand conditions behave in the fourth quarter and subsequently in 2018-19. Madan Sabnavis, Chief Economist, CARE Ratings. Sectoral Breakdown Growth in the farm sector in Q3 stood at 4.1 percent compared with 2.7 percent in Q2. The manufacturing sector grew at 8.1 percent versus 6.9 percent. The construction sector grew 6.8 percent versus 2.8 percent. The financing, real estate and insurance segment grew at 6.7 percent compared to 6.4 percent. Mining sector contracted 0.1 percent from a 7.1 percent growth in the previous quarter. The government spending-linked public administration segment grew at 7.2 percent versus 5.6 percent. Some of the sectoral data, especially the sharp pickup in agriculture is “puzzling”, according to Japanese brokerage Nomura said in a note. “Overall, the growth data are a positive surprise and confirm a cyclical recovery, led by rising investment demand, but growth in private consumption demand is slowing.” The more sustainable capital expenditure-driven recovery is yet to come, Sonal Varma, managing director and Chief Indian Economist at Nomura told BloombergQuint in an interview. We do not want another two or three quarters of high growth and then falling down again. The more sustainable recovery is probably some time down the line. But yes, we should enjoy this recovery. Sonal Varma, Managing Director & Chief Indian Economist, Nomura. Private investments continue to pick up as the gross fixed capital formation grew at a multi-quarter high in the third quarter. Government spending rose as well. Private consumption, however, weakened. Gross fixed capital formation grew at 12 percent year-on-year in Q3 compared to 6.6 percent in Q2. Private consumption expenditure at constant prices grew by 5.6 percent versus 6.5 percent in Q2. Government consumption expenditure grew at 6.05 percent compared to a weak 2.9 percent in Q2. The 12 percent growth in fixed capital formation is what pulled up the GDP growth and “the need of the hour is how we can nurture this budding investment revival with conducive policies”, according to Devendra Kumar Pant, chief economist at India Ratings and Research. Given the growth momentum and the inflationary risks, RBI is expected to stay in pause mode for a few quarters, Pant said in an emailed statement. “Thereafter, it will depend on growth-inflation dynamics shaped by both evolving domestic and external conditions, particularly oil prices.”...
227 Tatas to merge housing, infra businesses OTHER 01 Mar, 2018 Tata Group chairman N Chandrasekaran plans to merge the housing and infrastructure businesses to create a single large unit with revenues of over Rs 3,000 crore. The businesses are parked under Tata Housing and Tata Realty & Infrastructure, both subsidiaries of Tata Sons, the apex holding company of the conglomerate. This will be the first amalgamation of group companies under Chandrasekaran, who recently completed a year as the conglomerate’s chairman. The last such internal merger happened during Cyrus Mistry’s regime when IT company CMC was combined with TCSBSE 0.02 % in 2015. The move to merge Tata Housing and Tata Realty is in sync with Chandrasekaran’s strategy to simplify corporate structures, leverage synergies and scale up businesses. Tata Housing, set up in 1984, clocked revenues of Rs 428 crore in fiscal 2017, while Tata Realty, established in 2007, had revenues of Rs 2,718 crore. While Tata Housing constructs only residential apartments, Tata Realty, besides building houses, also undertakes construction of malls, roads and offices. Tata Realty has partnerships with Actis and Standard Chartered Private Equity, among others, to invest in infrastructure projects. The new combined entity will be headed by Sanjay Dutt who is currently with real estate PE major Ascendas-Singbridge. Dutt will join the Tata Group in April and will oversee both the housing and commercial real estate businesses till the merger is completed. Sanjay Ubale, MD & CEO of Tata Realty, will eventually move to the chairman’s office to look after public affairs. In the interim, Ubale will head the longer cycle business of infrastructure such as roads and highway projects....
228 Cipla enters into distribution agreement with Roche Pharma India CIPLA 28 Feb, 2018 Cipla has entered into a distribution agreement with Roche Pharma India under which Cipla will promote and distribute tocilizumab (Actemra) and Syndyma, the 2nd brand of Roche’s cancer therapy, bevacizumab (Avastin) in India. This partnership is in line with Cipla and Roche’s efforts to improve healthcare and increase access to innovative, life-changing medicines in India, particularly to patients who currently do not have access to them. Cipla is a global pharmaceutical company which uses cutting edge technology and innovation to meet the everyday needs of all patients. The company’s portfolio includes over 1500 products across wide range of therapeutic categories with one quality standard globally. ...
229 Bharat Forge exits power equipment JV BHARATFORG 28 Feb, 2018 Auto components major Bharat Forge said it has completed divestment of balance 26 per cent stake in power equipment JV with GE, Alstom Bharat Forge Power Pvt Ltd. With this, the company has completed divestment of its shareholding in Alstom Bharat Forge Power Pvt Ltd to GE, Bharat Forge said in a regulatory filing. The consideration received from the disposal was USD 35 million, which was received in March last year, the company said....
230 RPower's Sasan plant gets govt permission to mine 18 mn tonne coal RPOWER 28 Feb, 2018 Reliance Power said that its 3,960 MW Sasan ultra mega power project has got the permission from the coal ministry to increase mining output by a million tonnes every year to 18 million tonnes. "Reliance Power Ltd's subsidiary, Sasan Power Ltd (Sasan) 3,960 MW Ultra Mega Power Project (UMPP) has received permission from the Ministry of Coal on February 26, 2018 to increase the coal mining from 17 million tonne per annum to 18 million tonne per annum," Reliance Power said in a BSE filing. According to the statement, the project is currently operating at over 100 per cent PLF (Plant Load Factor or capacity utilisation) and this approval will facilitate Sasan to sustain its operations above 100 per cent PLF....
231 Gail India seeks to buy spot LNG cargo for March: Traders GAIL 28 Feb, 2018 Gail (India) has launched a tender to buy a liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo for delivery in March, two trade sources said on Wednesday. The company is seeking a cargo for delivery over March 1 to 25, they said....
232 Government Issues Guidelines For Auction Of Coal Mines To Private Firms OTHER 28 Feb, 2018 A week after the government of India announced, in a historic decision, that private and foreign firms will be permitted to bid for coal mines in India, the guidelines for such bidding have been issued. The guidelines, that provide for opening up of India’s coal sector, indicate that the highest price bid will be successful, there will be no restriction on the sale or utilisation of coal from the mine, there will be production flexibility and measures to capture windfall gains. Here are the key features as per the circular issued by the Ministry of Coal on Feb. 27... It will be an ascending forward auction. Floor price shall be determined as per a December 2014 circular. The highest price offer will win the auction. There shall be no restriction on sale/utilisation of the coal. Successful bidder shall have production flexibility. But production cannot drop below 50 percent of production as per mining plan. And in any five year block, at least 70 percent of the production, as per mining plan, will have to be mined. In order to capture revenue upside due to increase in coal prices there will be an annual adjustment of the final offer price linked to the Wholesale Price Index of coal (relevant grade). Up to 100 percent foreign direct investment may be allowed in coal mining activities including associated processing infrastructure. Relevant environmental norms will apply to the washing of coal. The Ministry has yet to publish details regarding the mines to be auctioned for sale of coal and their time schedule....
233 M&M collaborates with LG Chem for Li-ion battery technology M&M 27 Feb, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) and LG Chem, Korea’s leading manufacturer of advanced batteries have entered into collaboration in the field of advanced Li-ion battery technology. Under the aegis of this collaboration, LG Chem will develop a unique cell exclusively for India application and will also supply Li-ion cells based on NMC (nickel-manganese-cobalt) chemistry with high energy density. These cells will be deployed in the Mahindra and SsangYong range of Electric Vehicles. LG Chem will also design the Li-ion battery modules for Mahindra Electric, which in turn will create battery packs for the Mahindra Group and other customers. M&M is the flagship company of the Mahindra Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. Amongst the various business interests of its parent group, the company is mainly involved in the automobile manufacturing. It is one of the leading auto companies of India. ...
234 Reliance Infra wins ?292-crore arbitration award against Goa RELINFRA 27 Feb, 2018 Reliance Infrastructure has won an arbitration award of ?292 crore against the Goa Government. The need for arbitration arose due to prolonged non-payment of dues by the Goa Government towards supply of electricity by Reliance Infrastructure from its 48 MW Goa Power Plant in Sancoale. The Arbitration Tribunal has ordered the State to pay up by April 15. The Tribunal has also ordered payment of interest at 15 per cent per annum on the total award amount if the State government fails to pay the entire award amount by the deadline. The Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission had constituted the Tribunal under the new rules laid down in 2015. The tribunal began proceedings in January 2016 and pleadings and arguments by both the parties were completed in 12 sittings. Outstanding dues The total outstanding dues along with interest as on October 31, 2017, amount to ?278 crore. The Tribunal has also awarded Reliance Infrastructure interest from October 2017 till the date of the award, which amounts to ?14 crore. “The contention of Reliance Infrastructure Ltd that the rate of energy for the period from June 2013 to August 2014 was based on the varying prices of fuel and the dollar exchange rate as was agreed to by the Goa Government, was upheld by the Tribunal,” said a statement from Reliance Infrastructure. “The contention of the Goa Government that the rated capacity of the plant was to be down-rated, right from the second year of operation, for calculation of fixed charges, since the parties had already agreed against down-rating in 2007, was rejected by the Tribunal,” it added....
235 ACC shelves plans to merge with Ambuja Cement AMBUJACEM 27 Feb, 2018 The board of directors of ACC has shelved plans to merge the company with holding company Ambuja Cement. Switzerland-based cement major LafargeHolcim owns a majority stake in ACC through Ambuja Cement and had proposed to consolidate its holding in the two companies by merging both the listed companies. Referring to a proposal last May on formation of a special committee to consider a merger, ACC, in a statement on Monday, said that on the basis of a comprehensive evaluation by special committees, the Boards of both companies are of the opinion that there are certain constraints in implementing the merger between ACC and Ambuja Cement. So, ACC has decided not to proceed with the merger as of now, though it will remain the ultimate objective, the company said in the statement. Meanwhile, to maximise operational efficiency, the board has decided to approve an arrangement whereby Ambuja Cement will decide on mutual purchase and sale of material and services, it said. The operational part of the arrangement for mutual purchase and sale of material will be announced soon, it added....
236 Berger Paints inches up on planning to set up integrated paint plant in UP BERGEPAINT 27 Feb, 2018 Berger Paints India is currently trading at Rs. 247.90, up by 0.15 points or 0.06% from its previous closing of Rs. 247.75 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs. 247.90 and has touched a high and low of Rs. 248.00 and Rs. 245.40 respectively. So far 8165 shares were traded on the counter. The BSE group 'A' stock of face value Rs. 1 has touched a 52 week high of Rs. 285.75 on 25-Oct-2017 and a 52 week low of Rs. 220.30 on 08-Mar-2017. Last one week high and low of the scrip stood at Rs. 249.00 and Rs. 239.55 respectively. The current market cap of the company is Rs. 23935.92 crore. The promoters holding in the company stood at 74.99%, while Institutions and Non-Institutions held 14.27% and 10.75% respectively. Berger Paints India is considering putting up an integrated paint plant at Sandila Industrial Area near Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh (UP). The details of the Project are being worked out. Berger Paints India is the second largest paint company in India. It is present in all segments of paint including decorative, automotive, industrial, protective and powder coatings. ...
237 Siemens, BHEL Bid For Electric Vehicle Charger Contract SIEMENS 27 Feb, 2018 Eleven companies bid for setting up 2,000 electric vehicle chargers in the second phase of electric vehicle programme as India takes first steps towards its target to end fossil-fuel powered passenger transport. The 2,000 chargers will be set up in government offices. The companies include Analogics Tech India Ltd., Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd., Delta Power Solution India Pvt., EVI Technologies Pvt., Exicom Telesystems Ltd., Imperial Engineering Company, Ornate Agencies Pvt., RRT Electro Power Pvt., SBO Green Energy and Infra Pvt., Siemens Ltd. and VIN Semiconductors Pvt. These companies had participated in earlier bids as well, Saurabh Kumar, managing director at Energy Efficiency Services Ltd., told BloombergQuint. “These are under technical evaluation and the price bid hasn't been opened yet.” State-run EESL had floated a global tender for 10,000 electric vehicles in September to replace the government's fleet in line with the vision to switch to 100 percent electric mobility by 2030. The tender was split into two parts—500 vehicles were to be procured in phase one and the rest in the second phase. EESL in November floated a tender for 250 chargers in Delhi. About 140 have already been installed, Kumar said. Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat are also installing chargers. Of the 2,000 fresh chargers, 1,800 will be AC that can power three cars simultaneously and 200 will be DC chargers. "An AC charger costs about Rs 40,000 while the DC unit comes for Rs 1,50,000,” said Kumar. Meanwhile, the government is also formulating a policy on charging infrastructure which will be ready by May 15, Bloomberg reported....
238 JSW Steel to buy Italy-based Aferpi for ?600 crore JSWSTEEL 26 Feb, 2018 Having lost the race to acquire the stressed assets of two Bhushan group companies, JSW Steel is all set to buy out Italy’s second largest steel producer, Aferpi, formerly known as Lucchini SpA, in a deal worth ?600 crore. JSW Steel has been in talks with Algeria-headquartered Cevital Group on the acquisition for the last six months and is expected to make an announcement after closing the deal early next month, said sources tracking the development. An email sent by BusinessLine to the company for comments on the deal remained unanswered till the time of going to press. Earlier, Tata Steel had pipped JSW Steel, promoted by Sajjan Jindal, by placing an aggressive bid to buy out the stressed assets of Bhushan Steel and Bhushan Power and Steel. However, uncertainty lingers over the Tata Steel bid for the Bhushan assets as global metal major Liberty House has moved the National Company Law Tribunal against the Committee of Creditors’ decision not to open its bid, which was placed after the deadline but before other bids were opened. Eye on Italy JSW Steel has been eyeing Italy’s two largest steel producers, Ilva and Lucchini, which went belly up due to the sudden fall in steel demand after the 2008 economic recession in Europe. In 2012, they were declared bankrupt and put on the block. Considered a value buyer, JSW Steel did not place aggressive bids and lost Ilva to ArcelorMittal and Lucchini to Cevital Group. Last August, it initiated talks with the Cevital Group to buy out Lucchini, which was renamed Aferpi (Acciaierie e Ferriere di Piombino). Aferpi, originally owned by Russia’s Severstal, has an annual steel production capacity of about 2.5 million tonnes in Piombino. EV plans It produces speciality long products for European railways, bars for specialised auto industry parts and wire rod mills. The acquisition of Aferpi by JSW comes at a time when its group company, JSW Energy, is gearing up for electric car production in India. A foothold in Europe, one of the largest electric car markets, will enable the group to gain technical knowhow in electric vehicle production and localise manufacture of components much faster, said an analyst. JSW Energy plans to invest about ?4,000 crore to produce e-vehicles in Gujarat and is scouting for a joint venture partner. It plans to roll out the first electric vehicle by 2020....
239 Reliance to invest ?50,000 cr in AP RELIANCE 26 Feb, 2018 The Reliance Group has signed pacts with the Andhra Pradesh Government for investments worth ?50,000 crore in the electronics, IT and petroleum sectors, in phases. The MoUs were signed here on Sunday on the second day of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) partnership summit. Reliance Jio will invest ?15,000 crore in setting up electronics parks in Tirupati and Amaravati, the new capital city. An institute of excellence will be set up at Amaravati, which will be a hub for innovation, incubation and start-ups. The unit at Tirupati will have the capacity to manufacture one million cell phones. Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said it was “a huge step forward in making AP a hardware hub, and IT and ITES are already being promoted in a big way.” State IT Minister Nara Lokesh said 20 per cent of the cell phones in the country were being manufactured in Andhra Pradesh. “They are not merely being assembled in the State. They are being designed and manufactured here,” he added. In the petroleum sector, Reliance proposes to invest ?35,000 crore in phases....
240 Lupin Sees U.S. Pain Till 2020, Bets On Women’s Health To Offset Pricing Fall LUPIN 26 Feb, 2018 Indian pharmaceuticals company, Lupin Ltd., is betting on its branded women’s health specialty product, Solosec, to offset pricing pressure in the U.S. market. “Solosec is, by far, the most important product in our portfolio,” Nilesh Gupta, managing director at Lupin told BloombergQuint on the sidelines of an annual quality forum organised by trade group Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance (IPA) on Friday. The company sees the drug for bacterial vaginosis as a “big opportunity” and is working towards a sales target of $100 million for the oral granules. The company’s branded business, which makes for 13 percent of its U.S. sales, rose 25 percent to $28 million in the quarter ended December, compared to the corresponding quarter last year. The branded portfolio is expected to grow next year as well, said Gupta. Other new products such as Tamiflu generic which got a U.S.FDA approval on Feb. 21, along with levothyroxine, Ranexa generic and Axiron generic will also be launched in the U.S. by fiscal 2019. Lupin plans to launch a total of 20-30 new products over the next year. Also Read: Lupin’s Q3 Earnings Weak On Foreign Exchange Loss The company’s gross margins declined by nearly 10 percent in the quarter-ended December, compared to the same period in the previous year. This, as the company saw price erosions in most of its base generic drugs in the U.S., especially for its Metformin franchise. “The pain will continue for the next two years,” according to Gupta....
241 Sun Pharma drops the ball again at Halol plant SUNPHARMA 26 Feb, 2018 When the answer finally came, it was a disappointing no. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd was unable to convince the US Food and Drug Administration inspection team to give its Halol (Gujarat) plant an all-clear. An establishment inspection report would have given it closure and closed the warning letter on the plant. That would then see pending generic drug approvals filed from Halol come through, adding to Sun Pharma’s revenues and profits. That would be welcome considering the pressure on its US generics business. Instead, the company got another form 483 which is issued when the FDA finds lapses in compliance, with three observations this time, which was the only consolation. The previous inspection in December 2016 had resulted in nine observations. This one should have ideally resulted in none. Sun Pharma had spent considerable time and money in ensuring this plant was up to the USFDA’s compliance levels. What next? The 5% increase in Sun Pharmaceutical’s shares was a bit surprising, considering its press release gave no details about the observations. It did not clarify if any of these were repeat observations. A repeat observation would be seen as a negative development. The statement states the standard line of taking prompt action and replying to the FDA in 15 days. Once the form 483 becomes available, the severity of the lapses and whether there were any repeat ones will be known. If these are minor in nature and do not require a re-inspection by the regulator, it could be resolved relatively quickly. That will be the outcome investors will be looking for. If this calls for remedial action and another inspection, then there may be a long wait. That will prolong their agony over the loss in earnings due to Halol’s non-compliant status. In the recent quarterly earnings, the company had said that pricing pressure was still visible in the US market. If Halol had come back on stream, then it could have eased some of that pressure. That plant goes right back on the watch list of triggers that investors should watch out for....
242 LIC trims stake in Tata Global Beverages TATAGLOBAL 24 Feb, 2018 State-owned Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India has reduced its shareholding Tata Global Beverages (TGBL) to 3.62 per cent by selling 2.05 per cent stake in open market. LIC sold 1.29 crore shares, representing 2.05 per cent stake, of TGBL in open market between August 23, 2017 to February 21, 2018. The insurance giant had 5.67 per cent stake in TGBL earlier. Tata Global Beverages is a global beverage business with a brand presence in over 40 countries. The company has significant interests in tea, coffee and water and is the world’s second largest tea company. ...
243 Biocon to set up R&D lab in Hyderabad BIOCON 24 Feb, 2018 Biocon is planning to start a Research and development (R&D) lab of its subsidiary Syngene in Genome Valley, Hyderabad, along with an expansion of its existing API/Intermediates facility. While the expansion will lead to creation of 500 new jobs, the R&D facility will generate at least 1,000. Biocon is India’s largest and Asia’s leading Biotechnology Company with a strategic focus on biopharmaceuticals and research services. It is a fully integrated, innovation-driven biopharma enterprise offering affordable solutions for chronic diseases to patient's worldwide. ...
244 Titan Expects PNB Fraud To Drive Customers To Its Jewellery Brands TITAN 24 Feb, 2018 Titan Company Ltd., which will be part of the NSE's Nifty 50 index from April 2, expects to lure more customers to its jewellery brands like Tanishq as a fallout of the Rs 11,400 crore PNB fraud, involving Nirav Modi and Gitanjali Gems Ltd. "We are not dependent on banks for any credit and are not into exports. Also, the incident is likely to draw more customers to trusted brands like Tanishq," Managing Director Bhaskar Bhat told BloombergQuint in an interview. Tanishq has expanded its network in 400 towns in India with “high potential”, Bhat said. The company expects to clock a sales growth of 15-20 percent next financial year. “We will continue to remain aggressive in terms of sales store growth and network expansion,” Bhat said, adding that the final growth outlook will be announced on a later date. ...
245 Bharti Airtel to sell Motorola 4G smartphones starting Rs3,999 BHARTIARTL 24 Feb, 2018 Bharti Airtel has entered into a pact with Motorola Mobility India to sell its budget fourth-generation smart phones under the company's 'mera pehla smartphone' initiative. The company will sell Motorola Mobility's Moto C, Moto E4 and Lenovo K8 Note devices at Rs3,999, Rs6,499 and Rs10,999, respectively. All devices will come bundled with a special recharge of Rs169, with benefits like 1 GB of data per day and unlimited local and national calls. On purchase, the customer will get a cash back of Rs2,000 in two instalments over 36 months. Customers will have to make prepaid recharges worth Rs3,500 twice within 18 months to get the cashback instalments of Rs500 rupees and Rs1,500....
246 Sun Pharma receives three observations at Halol SUNPHARMA 24 Feb, 2018 Sun Pharma has received three form 483 observations post inspection at it's Halol facility. The USFDA concluded it's Halol inspection today and issued a Form 483 with three observations as per the exchange filing. The company is now preparing the response to the observations, which will be submitted to the USFDA within 15 business days. The corrective actions taken by the company have led to a reduction in the observations from nine to three which is a positive sign; however, one has to see if the new observations are minor in nature. The future of the US business is closely tied with the Halol facility and hence it remains a critical facility for Sun Pharma. Sun Pharma is currently trading at Rs574.80 up by Rs32.65 or 6.02% from its previous closing of Rs542.15 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs550 and has touched a high and low of Rs575 and Rs546.20 respectively....
247 Reliance Jio Is Now India’s Third-Largest Telecom Company RELIANCE 23 Feb, 2018 Billionaire Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. is now India's third-largest telecom operator India's youngest telecom operator’s revenue market share increased to 19.7 percent in the third quarter of the financial year 2018, higher than Idea Cellular Ltd., a feat achieved in just 16 months of operations. The telecom company is just 90 basis points away from becoming the second-largest. Reliance Jio’s revenue market share increased by 584 basis points compared to the last quarter. The revenue market share is calculated using the adjusted gross revenue (AGR) provided by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). AGR means gross revenue adjusted for interconnect usage charges and other deductions. In the December-ended quarter, Bharti Airtel Ltd., the country's largest telecom operator, lost some market share to Reliance Jio among the top telcos. Vodafone India Ltd. and Idea Cellular Ltd. did see some marginal improvement in their market share. Among the smaller players, the state-owned BSNL saw the sharpest decline in revenue market share followed by Anil Ambani-led Reliance Communications Ltd. Tata Teleservices revenue market share declined by more than 100 basis points to 4.39 percent. Reliance Communications and Tata Teleservices have sold their assets to Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel respectively. Reliance Communications is still operating as a virtual network operator, but Tata Teleservices has announced the closure. The telecom sector as a whole again saw a drop in its adjusted gross revenue decline the most in last three quarters. After an increase in last quarter, the adjusted gross revenue again decline by 10.9 percent to Rs 27,391 crore in the December-ended quarter....
248 India’s Biggest Drugmaker’s Fortunes Tied To This, For Now SUNPHARMA 23 Feb, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Ltd.’s near-term fortunes are tied to the outcome of U.S. drug regulator’s ongoing inspection of its facility in Halol, Gujarat that can’t win drug approvals in America, the biggest market for India’s No. 1 drugmaker. Inspectors from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration who started re-inspecting the unit on Feb. 12 are expected to complete it today. The review stems from nine observations that the plant received last year. That had followed a December 2015 warning letter preventing the company from making fresh filings. “We believe the plant has a good chunk of products pending approval,” Alok Dalal, a healthcare analyst at CLSA, wrote in a note. “A further delay in Halol clearance could hurt U.S. recovery.” The resolution for Halol unit is crucial as generic drugmakers have been cutting prices in the U.S. amid fierce competition. A clearance will unlock several complex generic filings and allow the company to ramp up existing products. In response to BloombergQuint’s emailed queries, Sun Pharma said, “As a policy we don’t comment on the schedule of regulatory inspections.” The plant’s contribution to the U.S. sales declined to 11 percent from 22 percent before its regulatory troubles began, according to a CLSA report. Its share in overall sales dropped from 12 percent to 4 percent. That’s because of two reasons. The acquisition of Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd. increased the overall base. Also, sales declined amid price erosion and competition from about $350 million to $150 million in three years through March 2017. If Halol cleared, CLSA forecasts incremental revenue of at least $100 million and $150 million in years ending March 2019 and 2020. It could go up to $200 million and $300 million, increasing its earnings per share by 4 and 10 percent, respectively. Shares of Sun Pharma declined nearly 20 percent in the last 12 months, ahead of the 17 percent decline in the benchmark NSE Nifty Pharma Index. Nearly 44 percent of the analysts tracking the stock recommend a ‘Buy’. The Bloomberg consensus upside potential is 3.8 percent based on Feb. 22 stock price of Rs 541.15. Both Goldman Sachs and Citi cited clinical trials of Tildrakizumab, a drug used for skin disease plaque psoriasis, and the outcome of the U.S. FDA’s re-inspection of the Halol plant as the potential catalysts for the stock. Goldman Sachs maintained its ‘Buy’ call while Citi stuck to its ‘Neutral’ rating. Analysts agree that risk for the drugmaker will be a failure to get an all-clear on the Halol plant. Yet, Deutsche Bank sees an approval only as a sentiment boost. “We think earnings factor in near- and medium-term upside potential,” Kartik Mehta of Deutsche Bank wrote in a note. The Nine Observations The U.S. FDA’s nine observations that Sun Pharma got in 2016 for the Halol facility: Field alert reports not submitted within three working days of getting information about bacteriological contamination and a significant chemical, physical or other change in a distributed drug. Drugs don’t bear an expiration date determined by appropriate stability data to assure they meet applicable standards of strength, quality and purity at time of use. Testing programmes not adequately designed to assess the stability of drugs. Test procedures, including any changes, are not adequately reviewed and approved by the quality control unit. The accuracy of test methods has not been established. No scientifically sound lab control mechanisms to ensure that components, containers, closures, in-process materials, or drugs conform to standards of strength, quality and purity. The responsibilities and procedures applicable to the quality control unit not fully followed. Changes to written procedures are not drafted, reviewed and approved by the appropriate organisational units. Appropriate controls not exercised to ensure that changes to documents related to drug manufacturing are instituted only by authorised personnel....
249 Tata Communications joins forces with Chunghwa Telecom TATACOMM 22 Feb, 2018 Tata Communications is joining forces with Chunghwa Telecom, Taiwan’s largest mobile network operator, to bring global connectivity to consumer electronics and industrial Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Tata Communications MOVE - IoT Connect allows IoT devices to be deployed quickly both locally and internationally by leveraging Tata Communications’ ecosystem of mobile network operators worldwide. As part of this ecosystem, Chunghwa Telecom will be able to tap into additional revenues by connecting IoT devices through Tata Communications MOVE. Tata Communications along with its subsidiaries is a leading global provider of A New World of Communications. ...
250 Adani Group to invest Rs 35,000 cr in UP ADANIENT 22 Feb, 2018 Adani Group today said it will invest Rs 35,000 crore in Uttar Pradesh over the next five years in various sectors. Promising to stand with the leadership in transforming the state, Gautam Adani of the Adani Group committed an aggregate investment of Rs 35,000 crores in UP. Speaking at the inaugural session of the Investors Summit- 2018 here, Adani said energy, logistics, solar power, roads and agriculture are among the core sectors in which his group is working and showed interest in investing in these fields. “Almost 17 per cent of the total population of the country lives in Uttar Pradesh...the development story of the country cannot be written without the state,” Adani said....
251 Lupin gets USFDA nod to market generic Tamiflu LUPIN 22 Feb, 2018 Drug firm Lupin today said it has received the final nod from the US health regulator to market its Oseltamivir Phosphate for oral suspension, used for the treatment of acute influenza in America. The company has received final approval to market its generic Oseltamivir Phosphate for oral suspension from the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA), Lupin said in a filing to BSE. The company’s product is a generic version of Hoffman-La Roche Inc’s Tamiflu for oral suspension, 6 mg/mL, it added. Lupin would commence promoting the product shortly, it added. According to IQVIA MAT October 2017 data, Oseltamivir Phosphate for oral suspension, 6 mg (base)/mL had annual sales of approximately $358 million in the US, Lupin said. The product is “indicated for the treatment of acute, uncomplicated influenza A and B in patients 2 weeks of age and older, who have been symptomatic for no more than 48 hours and prophylaxis of influenza A and B in patients 1 year and older, ” it added. Shares of Lupin were today trading at Rs 813.50 per scrip in afternoon trade on the BSE, down 0.28 per cent from its previous close....
252 ITC plans integrated consumer goods plant in UP ITC 22 Feb, 2018 Diversified firm ITC on Wednesday said it plans to set up an integrated consumer goods manufacturing facility in Uttar Pradesh besides exploring investment possibilities in green energy and a logistics hub in the state in coming years. The company has implemented significant interventions in agriculture sector in the State strengthening agri and food value chains making a meaningful contribution to the Prime Minister’s vision of doubling farmers’ income, ITC CEO Sanjiv Puri said in a statement. “In alignment with the government’s Make in India vision, ITC proposes to invest in a world-class integrated consumer goods manufacturing facility in the State. The company is also exploring investment possibilities in green energy and a logistics hub in the years to come,” Puri said. ITC has a large footprint in the state which includes a modern unit in Saharanpur and 19 co-packaging units which support local entrepreneurship, he added. Highlighting various steps taken by the company in the State, he said through a network of 2,000 e-choupals, ITC is today empowering 12,00,000 farmers in the State. “ITC’s agro-forestry model in Uttar Pradesh aims to provide food, fodder and wood security and de-risk farmers through alternative sources of remuneration, while contributing to carbon sequestration and soil conservation,” Puri said....
253 Mahindra Logistics opens its largest multi-user facility in Pune MAHLOG 22 Feb, 2018 Mahindra Logistics has signed, Chakan (Pune) based Embassy Industrial Parks, one of the largest spaces in the country comprising of built-to-suit facilities ranging from 50,000 sq. ft. to 2lakh sq. ft. in size. The facility is ready to lease for warehousing purpose. Embassy Industrial Parks is a joint venture between Embassy Group, India’s leading property developer and Warburg Pincus, a leading global private equity player. Chakan is an automotive belt and Mahindra Logistics already has some existing relationships and volumes, hence it will be utilized properly, as per the company expectations. Additionally, this warehouse is also owned by the big investors, as mentioned above, hence it is expected to be a better facility than the individual owned warehouse. The space was expected to be handed over in April but it has commissioned earlier than expectations. This is a positive news on the counter....
254 No Buyers for Indian Bonds Means More Pain for Modi's Debt Plan OTHER 22 Feb, 2018 The biggest holders of India’s sovereign debt are dumping them. State lenders have been selling 4.7 billion rupees ($73 million) of government bonds on average every day this year, hurt by deep portfolio losses, data from the Clearing Corp. of India show. Last year, their net daily inflows totaled 368 million rupees, and in 2016, the run rate was at 3 billion rupees a day. Their sale in a market where there’s a paucity of buyers is contributing to a vicious downward spiral, where losses keep worsening. It will be difficult for debt auctions to sail through without participation from the state banks when Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s new borrowing program begins in April, according to Sandeep Bagla, associate director at Trust Capital Services in Mumbai. “State-run banks have reduced secondary market activity, which is impacting volumes in a big way,” said Bagla. “They are investing selectively in state government bonds, but staying away from federal bonds.” The average daily volumes on the central bank’s trading system have dropped to 307 billion rupees since Jan. 1, from 385 billion rupees in 2017. Sovereign bonds in India have sold off for six consecutive months, hurt by concerns of a wider government deficit and higher oil prices....
255 Two Anti-Dumping Duties Prompt Tyre Industry To Call For Export Ban On Carbon Black OTHER 22 Feb, 2018 A shortage in the domestic market of carbon black, a key raw material used in tyres as a reinforcing material, has resulted in unplanned shutdowns of factories, an industry body has said. Curiously, two different anti-dumping duties have resulted in this problem. Last year the imposition of an anti-dumping duty on select Chinese tyres helped boost domestic tyre production. But a 2015 anti-dumping duty on the import of carbon black restricted supplies of the raw material. To counter this, the Automotive Tyre Manufacturers Association, in a statement issued on Monday, has asked the government to allow duty free import of carbon black for domestic tyre makers. It has also asked for curbs on the export of carbon black. The domestic production of carbon black is estimated at 8.4 lakh kilo tonne, while consumption is pegged at 9 lakh KT resulting in a shortfall of 60,000 KT, according to ATMA. This gap is increased further as domestic manufacturers export nearly 1.2 lakh KT, taking the overall shortage to 1.8 lakh KT which is approx 20 percent of the total domestic production. The gap in the demand and supply of the raw material leaves the industry with no choice but to import carbon black, ATMA said. However, the an anti-dumping duty amounting to $397 per tonne is proving to be prohibitive. If exports are increased, the domestic availability will fall further, said Rajiv Budhraja, director general of ATMA, making the case for export curbs. There is a huge potential of value addition which is to take place in the country and you are exporting such a basic raw material and penalising the domestic value addition by imposing this anti-dumping duty on imports. This is a paradoxical situation where the government must step in and resolve that do we export basic raw material and penalise the consuming interest for imports for a product or raw material which is in such scarce supply? Rajiv Budhraja, Director General, Automotive Tyre Manufacturers Association But Jigar Jani, analyst at Edelweiss Securities, who tracks this sector closely, believes this gap can be lessened by 50 percent. “While the difference is estimated to be approx. 1.8 lakh KT, it is after deducting imports. If you add back the imports which is estimated to be around 90,000 -1 lakh KT, then the actual demand-supply gap falls to only 80,000 KT.” Except that imports are prohibitively priced due to the duty, said ATMA Crisis For MSMSEs While domestic manufacturers of carbon black are undertaking capacity expansion, this will only start contributing meaningfully after the first half of the next financial year. With this production gap and high import duty, micro, small and medium enterprises manufacturing tyres have come under pressure, Budhraja said. “...Many MSMEs have shut down because they don’t have carbon black. On one hand, the budget is incentivising the MSMEs and the government is promoting ‘Make in India’. The original equipment segment after so many years is seeing a revival. We were hoping that with anti-dumping on truck and bus radial, the domestic industry will see an acceleration with more production and then suddenly you hit a speed breaker,” he added. Adding to the shortage is a change in the production trend of carbon black, said Vikrant Gupta, equity research associate at Antique Stock Broking. Existing manufacturers of the raw material are shifting towards a niche high-value sub segment in the carbon industry called specialty black, which has application in non-tyre segment like coatings, polymers and printing, etc., he said. “Realisations from specialty carbon black are twice that of normal rubber carbon black and command four-five times higher Ebitda margins (earnings before interest, depreciation and ammortisation margins). This coupled with an element of exports which accounts for nearly 10-12 percent of the total domestic production has resulted in severe crunch of the raw material,” Gupta said. Jani argued that an export ban on carbon black would be more effective than reducing the anti-dumping duty. While there are exports happening, the realisations from domestic market are higher than overseas market estimated at about Rs 120-130 per kg as against Rs 90-95/kg. In a situation like this, what makes sense is to curb exports instead of removing anti-dumping duty as it would increase the domestic availability....
256 Sun Pharma recalls 17,554 bottles of nasal spray from US market SUNPHARMA 22 Feb, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries’ US arm - Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Inc (collectively Sun Pharma) is recalling over 17.5 thousand bottles of antihistamine Azelastine HCI nasal solution from the US market. The company is recalling 17,554 bottles of Azelastine HCI Nasal Solution (Nasal Spray) 0.1 per cent (137 mcg per spray), 30 ml indicated for the treatment of the symptoms of seasonal allergic rhinitis. The ongoing nationwide voluntary recall is a class III recall and is being recalled, following a failure to meet the %RSD requirement in the test for Droplet Size during the 6 month long term stability test station. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
257 Havells India launches range of unique water purifiers HAVELLS 22 Feb, 2018 Havells India has unveiled a range of unique water purifiers capable of handling new age pollutants. These purifiers maintain the pH balance in water and add various essential minerals and trace elements lost during the reverse osmosis (RO) process. Havells range of water purifiers for the first time in the country would offer safe, healthy and mineral rich drinking water to consumers at the all times. The promise would be delivered across six variants namely “Digitouch”, “Digiplus”, “UTS”, “Max”, “Pro” and “UV Plus” that have been designed with clear focus on design excellence, technological advancements and consumer convenience. The product would also offer a host of advanced consumer convenience features such as programmable multi?fill options, feather touch consumer interface, alerts on performance, & preventive maintenance, operations and cartridge life. The range consists of six product variants, priced between Rs 10,499 and Rs 23,999. Havells India is a leading FMEG company (Fast moving electrical goods) with presence across India. Its product range includes Industrial & Domestic Circuit Protection Switchgear, Cables & Wires, Motors, Fans, Havells owns prestigious brands like Havells, Lloyd, Crabtree and Standard etc. ...
258 Tata Steel’s bids for Bhushan a déjà vu moment for investors TATASTEEL 21 Feb, 2018 Fears that Tata Steel Ltd may be biting off more than it can chew have made investors skittish as news reports say the company is in the lead to acquire Bhushan Steel Ltd, and Bhushan Power and Steel Ltd. The last time Tata Steel stretched its balance sheet to grow in size, it was to acquire Corus Plc. It took a hard fall on that one. Several restructuring attempts and asset impairment write-offs later, the European operations are set to move into a joint venture with Thyssenkrupp AG. If Tata Steel’s investors were settling in for a more normal ride from here on, the stressed assets’ bidding changes that. News reports indicate Tata Steel is offering an upfront payment of Rs35,000crore for Bhushan Steel for its financial creditors and Rs17,000 crore for Bhushan Power. This adds up to Rs52,000 crore, but after paying operational creditors and funding working capital, the amount may increase to Rs69,000 crore. At the financial creditors’ level, it translates to a haircut for the lenders of 38% for Bhushan Steel and 63% for Bhushan Power. The haircut in Bhushan Steel’s case seems to be less, which may be worrying investors. The upfront payment is only one aspect and the full transaction structure will give a better picture of what Tata Steel has offered, and what it is asking for in return. For instance, favourable debt refinancing terms could be one concession sought. Therefore, any premature reaction—celebratory or funereal—may be jumping the gun. What is behind Tata Steel’s interest in both companies? Bhushan Steel’s steel capacity is 5.6 million tonnes (mt), while that of Bhushan Power is 2.3mt, based on available information (Bhushan Power is unlisted). Both companies are also implementing expansion plans (including allied activities such as increasing captive power capacity) for their steel operations. The existing capacity of 7.9mt itself is substantial, considering that Tata Steel recently announced plans to expand its Odisha steel capacity by 5mt over four years, which will add to the company’s total steel capacity of 13mt. The location is another positive. Both the Bhushan plants are in Odisha, where Tata Steel’s new steel plant is also located. That should throw up opportunities of rationalizing costs across functions, and even higher operating efficiencies if possible, because of proximity of the plants. Saving costs on the corporate function is a given, as that function will become redundant and so will all the taxation-related concessions to make these stressed assets more attractive to bidders. What’s more, both companies are making profits at the Ebitda (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) level, with fiscal year 2017 numbers showing Bhushan Steel turned in an Ebitda margin of 17.6% at the consolidated level while Bhushan Power’s stand-alone margin was 14%. High depreciation and interest costs pushed them into losses, implying underutilization of capacity and an unfavourable capital structure. A new owner would first focus on cutting costs, improving efficiency and utilization, and then completing those half-done projects that can improve profitability in the near run. Refinancing the debt at a lower cost will also be a priority to improve the net earnings from the acquired businesses. Tata Steel’s capital structure is set to change, which should help ease the burden of this transaction. A rights issue is under way to raise Rs12,800 crore and once the European steel business moves to a joint venture with Thyssenkrupp, the debt related to this business will also be lower. That should give Tata Steel breathing room for the increase in debt because of these acquisitions. Still, if not for these acquisitions, Tata Steel would have been left with a much lighter balance sheet and investors could have looked to a simpler life ahead. Now, the balance sheet will be weighed down by these acquisitions, and the additional investments needed to extract their full value. Invariably, such acquisitions are also a strain on profitability in the near-to-medium term. The longer run may see it all turn out well. But the longer run is also unpredictable, especially if the steel cycle goes against Tata Steel. Investors may have to reconcile having a new monkey on their backs....
259 PNB Housing Finance planning to raise $400 million through masala bonds PNB 21 Feb, 2018 PNB Housing Finance is planning to raise $400 million through masala bonds in order to fund building of affordable homes. Of the total, World Bank’s arm IFC has agreed to underwrite $150 million from its own funds, while the balance would be raised through other investors. The money will be raised through masala bonds - rupee-denominated bonds issued in overseas capital markets. PNB Housing Finance is a registered housing finance company with National Housing Bank (NHB). They provide housing loans to individuals and corporate bodies for construction, purchase, repair and upgradation of houses. ...
260 RIL to acquire stake in Eros International PLC RELIANCE 21 Feb, 2018 Reliance Industries (RIL) through a subsidiary, has agreed to subscribe to a 5% equity stake in NYSE listed Eros International PLC (Eros) at a price of $15 per share, which represents an 18% premium to last closing price. The transaction is subject to customary regulatory and other approvals. Further, RIL and Eros International Media have agreed to partner in India to jointly produce and consolidate content from across India. The parties will equally invest up to Rs 1,000 crore in aggregate (approximately $150 million) to produce and acquire Indian films and digital originals across all languages. RIL is India’s largest private sector company, to feature in Fortune’s Global 500 list of ‘World’s Largest Corporations’ - currently ranking 203rd in terms of revenues, and 110th in terms of profits. ...
261 NTPC plans to acquire 1,000 MW hydropower projects NTPC 21 Feb, 2018 Public sector undertaking NTPC Ltd will be looking to acquire hydropower projects in a bid to continue diversifying its energy generation portfolio. Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the International R & D Conclave being organised by the Central Electricity Authority, the company CMD, Gurdeep Singh said, “We will call for bids to acquire 1,000 MW of hydropower projects within a month.” This will be similar to the call for acquiring thermal power projects that NTPC had issued recently. The company is open to prospective sellers approaching them and they want the sellers to come forward....
262 M&M to phase out low selling models, launch newer models prior to BS-VI implementation M&M 21 Feb, 2018 India’s leading carmaker Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M) has announced that it will be phasing out some of its older models and replacing them with new launches prior to Bharat Stage VI (BS-VI) coming into effect. It will cut investments in Xylo MPV, Verito sedan, Verito Vibe notchback and Nuvosport compact SUV. These models are among the lesser selling models for M&M and hence the company wants to phase them out rather than coming out with their refreshes. The phasing out will happen over next two years once existing products belonging to these models are sold out. Our Take M&M is preparing itself technologically for adapting to stricter safety and emission norms that come with the BS-VI implementation. These norms will come into effect from April 01, 2020. Given the dwindling popularity of these models, it makes more sense for the company to phase out these models since their refreshes could meet with limited success. New launches planned in place of old models will provide freshness to its overall portfolio. M&M is already the leader in India among tractors and is a key player in UVs. The company has the best preparedness in electric vehicles mong Indian OEMs. A greater focus on strengthening its passenger vehicle portfolio will be a step in the right for the company for ensuring a balanced portfolio. Hence, we view these developments positively. The combined entity (standalone M&M and subsidiary MVML) derives revenue from farm equipment (35%), automotive including 2W (61%) and others (4%) as on Q3FY18. It is market leader in the tractor industry with share of 44% as on Q3FY18. On account of new launches and normal monsoon, management expects the tractor industry to grow at 15-18% in FY18 and 8% in FY19. In the automotive business, M&M expects UV segment to perform well backed by two new launches and three product refreshes. M&M’s FE business continues to do well and we expect the company to maintain leadership position on account of new launches. Mahindra & Mahindra ended at Rs709.05 down by Rs18.05 or 2.48% from its previous closing of Rs727.10 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs730 and touched a high and low of Rs733.50 and Rs704 respectively. A total of 43,84,843 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs88,148.57cr....
263 India to Tighten Approvals for Firms Borrowing Offshore OTHER 21 Feb, 2018 India’s central bank is reviewing its process for allowing companies to raise money overseas due to concern that any increase in rupee volatility may hurt borrowers’ ability to repay debt, a person familiar with the matter said. The Reserve Bank of India is spending more time scrutinizing companies’ hedging practices, vetting borrowers more closely to prepare for any financial-market fallout from an increase in U.S. interest rates, the person said, asking not to be named as the matter is private. The new process is resulting in slower approvals in recent weeks for offshore debt sales, said other people with knowledge of the matter, who also asked not to be identified. The RBI hasn’t issued loan registration numbers to some borrowers recently, they said. Companies need to obtain LRNs for raising debt overseas under the country’s external commercial borrowing guidelines. “RBI’s prime concern is to avoid any defaults by companies offshore, ”said Raj Kothari, head of trading at Jay Capital Ltd. in London. “Such scrutiny will further improve the trust of international investors in Indian issuers." Overseas bond sales have stalled this month after Indian firms raised $15.6 billion last year, most since 2014, taking advantage of record-low borrowing costs. Concern about the pace of inflation and the outlook for borrowing costs in the U.S. sent tremors through global markets in early February, and the rupee is one of the worst-performing major global currencies so far this year. While offshore dollar bond issuance so far this year has maintained pace with last year, any restrictions on borrowing rules could impact some of India’s biggest borrowers including Bharti Airtel Ltd, ONGC Videsh Ltd., Reliance Industries Ltd, Indian Railway Finance Corp Ltd. and Suzlon Energy Ltd. which have debt coming due this year. An email and text message to RBI spokesman Jose Kattoor was unanswered. The RBI already keeps a close watch on Indian firms borrowing abroad and has a pricing cap on offshore borrowing, restricting the number of companies looking to access foreign debt. This means that only 5 percent of dollar bond deals from Asia excluding Japan come from Indian borrowers. Central bank rules state that Indian firms can’t sell three-to five-year debt abroad with an all-in cost of more than 300 basis points over the six month London interbank offered rate and 450 basis points for notes with tenors of more than five years. In a speech in December, Deputy Governor Viral Acharya said that the rate of short term overseas debt growth should not exceed the pace of reserves growth. India’s short term debt was at around $100 billion or around a quarter of the total foreign exchange reserves of $420 billion, RBI’s Acharya said. ...
264 Sun Pharma’s arm hikes stake in Ranbaxy Malaysia SUNPHARMA 20 Feb, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries’ one of the wholly owned subsidiaries has increased its shareholding in Ranbaxy Malaysia, Malaysia, by way of further purchase of 386,865 shares of face value of MYR 1.00 each (equivalent to 4.84%) of Ranbaxy Malaysia. Ranbaxy Malaysia, is a subsidiary of the company, and the total shareholding of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries along with its wholly owned subsidiary is 85.90%, prior to this purchase of shares. Post completion of this purchase of shares, the total holding of the company along with its wholly owned subsidiary will increase from 85.90% to 90.74% in Ranbaxy Malaysia. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
265 Advanced Enzyme to make additional investment in AEM ADVENZYMES 20 Feb, 2018 Advanced Enzyme Technologies has received an approval for making additional investment not exceeding MYR 300,000, in one or more tranches, in shares of Advanced Enzymes (Malaysia), subsidiary (AEM). The board of directors at its meeting held on February 19, 2018 approved the same. The acquisition of remaining 20% stake i.e. 50,000 equity shares of face value of MYR 1 each will be made from the existing other shareholders of AEM. On completion of the said acquisition, AEM would become wholly owned subsidiary of the company. The balance investment will be by way of subscription, purchase or otherwise of shares of AEM, in one or more tranches. Advanced Enzyme Technologies is an India based company engaged in research, development, manufacturing and marketing of Healthcare, Nutrition and Bio-Processing products. ...
266 Suven Life Sciences secures product patents in India, South Korea SUVEN 20 Feb, 2018 Suven Life Sciences has secured one product patent from India and one product patent from South Korea corresponding to the New Chemical Entities (NCEs) for the treatment of disorders associated with Neurodegenerative diseases and these Patents are valid through 2029 and 2033 respectively. The granted claims of the patents include the class of selective Alpha4 Beta2 and 5-HT4 compounds respectively and are being developed as therapeutic agents for major depressive disorders and for the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, Attention deficient hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Huntington’s disease, Narcolepsy, Parkinson and Schizophrenia respectively. Suven Life Science is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing novel pharmaceutical products, which are first in class or best in class CNS therapies using GPCR targets. ...
267 Tech Mahindra to invest Rs 125 crore to create an all-green tech hub in Nagpur TECHM 19 Feb, 2018 Tech Mahindra will invest Rs 125 crore to create an all-green tech hub in Nagpur. This investment will create at least 2,500 jobs. Tech Mahindra is a leading provider of solutions and services to the telecommunications industry with a majority stake owned by Mahindra & Mahindra. The company, since 2002 has operations in China with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Guangzhou. ...
268 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals presents new data on GBR 830 GLENMARK 19 Feb, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has presented findings from a Phase 2a study of GBR 830, an investigational anti-OX40 monoclonal antibody, at the 2018 American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) Annual Meeting in San Diego. The GBR 830 Phase 2a study was a double-blind, placebo-controlled study in adults with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis (AD) that evaluated the safety, biological and clinical activity, and pharmacokinetics of GBR 830. New data presented on 40 patients who had skin biopsies showed that GBR 830 had an effect on AD-related disease biomarkers. Additionally, a clinical improvement in Eczema Area and Severity Index (EASI) scores was observed in 17 out of 23 patients treated with GBR 830. In the study, GBR 830 was safe and well-tolerated. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals is a global pharmaceutical company. The company is engaged in the development of new chemical entities (NCEs) and new biological entities (NBEs). Its segments are India, United States, Latin America, Europe and Rest of the World (ROW). ...
269 Reliance Industries plans?Rs60,000 crore integrated industrial area in Maharashtra RELIANCE 19 Feb, 2018 Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), India’s largest private sector enterprise, and its global partners will set up the country’s first integrated industrial area in Maharashtra with an investment of Rs60,000 crore, RIL chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani said on Sunday. “Reliance, along with other global companies, will invest over Rs60,000 crore in the next 10 years in Maharashtra, which will be the first integrated industrial area in the country,” Ambani said on the opening day of the Global Investors’ Summit at Magnetic Maharashtra Convergence 2018 being held in Mumbai. Ambani did not say where the integrated industrial area would be set up. The event is Maharashtra’s first global investors summit, with an objective similar to the Prime Minister’s Make In India initiative. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who inaugurated the Investors’ Summit, also laid the foundation stone for the Navi Mumbai International Airport where state-run City Industrial Development Corporation (Cidco) and the GVK Group are building the Navi Mumbai International Airport with an investment of Rs16,700 crore. As part of establishing the integrated industrial area in Maharashtra, Ambani said that in the last couple of weeks, more than 20 global companies have already agreed to co-invest with Reliance. They include Cisco, Siemens, Corning, HP, Dell, Nokia and Nvidia. “I firmly believe that what China could achieve with its manufacturing revolution, India can achieve much more—and much more quickly—with the businesses and services of the fourth industrial revolution,” Ambani added. Through its telecom venture Reliance Jio Infocomm, RIL plans to connect every gram panchayat, school, college and hospital in Maharashtra in the next two years to bring the benefits of the digital revolution to the last person in society, Ambani said, adding that RIL has so far invested Rs2,50,000 crore across India, of which the highest investment is in Maharashtra at Rs22,000 crore. “The fourth industrial revolution will help Maharashtra and India solve the most difficult problems in socio-economic development: in healthcare and education; in water security and environmental security; in boosting agriculture production; in making all our towns and cities smart, and also all our villages smart, in addition to generating new employment opportunities for the youth of Maharashtra, and the youth of India,” Ambani added....
270 Would be cautious on Tata Steel owing to aggressive expansion drive: Expert TATASTEEL 19 Feb, 2018 Reports over the weekend suggest that Tata Steel has emerged as the highest bidder to buy Bhushan Steel, offering a package of Rs 40,000 crore. In an interview to CNBC-TV18, Rakesh Arora, Managing Partner of Go India Advisors shared his views and readings on Tata Steel and Bhushan Steel. Arora said that Tata Steel will double its capacity if Bhushan asset purchase goes ahead. However, we would be cautious on Tata Steel owing to the aggressive expansion drive. We are pleased that JSW Steel has not been aggressive in this bidding war, he added. Watch accompanying video for more details & also for SP Tulsian’s views on the overall steel space....
271 Mahindra Group to invest Rs 2,325 crore in Maharashtra M&M 19 Feb, 2018 The Mahindra Group today announced over Rs 2,300 crore investment in the state in three projects of which as much as Rs 1,700 crore will be spend towards creating an entertainment destination at Kandivali, a northwestern suburb of the megapolis. Addressing the Magnetic Maharashtra investor summit here this evening Mahindra group chairman Anand Mahindra said his software company Tech Mahindra will invest Rs 125 crore to create an all-green tech hub in Nagpur that will create ate least 2,500 jobs. On the Rs 1,700-crore investment announced in the city, Mahindra said, "we are exploring to set up a unique film-centric entertainment destination on our land at Kandivali in the city as Mumbai is the heart of Hindi film industry. "This will create hundreds of direct and indirect jobs and we plan to spend Rs 1,700 crore on this venture," he told the summit that was inaugurated by Prime Minister Modi. It can be noted that the group already runs a successful tour and leisure services company Mahindra Holidays and this announcement hints that the group is ready to tap tourism and related segments in a more aggressive manner. He also said the company will invest another Rs 500 crore in the state for which his group has "executed an agreement with Maharashtra for an investment of Rs 500 crore under the new electric vehicle policy." It can be noted that Mahindra is the first electric car maker in the country after it bought out the Bengaluru- based electric car company Reva, which again was the first such firm in the country. The company has also won an order of supplying 150 electric sedans to the government-owned ESSL as part of the government push to an all-electric transportation system in the country by 2030. ...
272 Tata Steel May Bag Both Bhushan Steel And Bhushan Power & Steel TATASTEEL 17 Feb, 2018 The country’s second-largest private sector steel company, Tata Steel Ltd. has emerged as the highest bidder for both Bhushan Steel Ltd. and Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd., according to two bankers who requested not to be identified. This is the result of independent bidding processes conducted for both Bhushan Steel and Bhushan Power & Steel under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code. The bankers quoted above stated that Tata Steel has offered to pay up to Rs 45,000 crore for Bhushan Steel and Rs 17,000 crore for Bhushan Power. JSW Steel Ltd., the only other bidder for both companies is said to have put up Rs 30,000 crore for Bhushan Steel and Rs 11,000 crore for Bhushan Power & Steel. The bankers said details regarding bids for Bhushan Steel were revealed at an informal meeting between banks on Friday. In the case of Bhushan Power & Steel, the details are yet to be formally discussed by lenders. The Indian Banks’ Association has guided that lenders should only negotiate further with the highest bidder. What It Takes To Become A Suitable Bidder In its bid for Bhushan Steel, Tata Steel has offered Rs 35,200 crore towards repaying financial creditors, Rs 1,200 crore to operational creditors and Rs 9,000 crore towards working capital requirements, said the two bankers. Mahender Kumar Khandelwal, the resolution professional for Bhushan Power confirmed the bid information. Vijaykumar V Iyer, the resolution professional for Bhushan Steel has not responded to BloombergQuint’s queries. Spokespersons for Tata Steel and JSW Steel are yet to respond as well. Both the Bhushan group companies were on the first list of 12 stressed accounts which the Reserve Bank of India had sent to bankers in June 2017 for immediate action under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy code. Bhushan Steel owes over Rs 56,000 crore to its financial creditors while Bhushan Power & Steel owes over Rs 48,000 crore. Other debts including those claimed by suppliers and other business associates are not publicly disclosed....
273 UltraTech Cement sees no CCI hurdle in Binani Cement deal ULTRACEMCO 17 Feb, 2018 UltraTech Cement, which has placed a bid of ?7,000 crore for the stressed Binani Cement asset, is not expecting any hurdle in getting the Competition Commission of India’s approval for the deal. Atul Daga, Chief Financial Officer, UltraTech Cement, said even after the acquisition, UltraTech will have only 14 million tonne per annum (mtpa) capacity in Rajasthan, while Shree Cement will reach 19 mtpa with its ongoing capacity addition of 2 mt. “We may have a problem in getting the CCI approval, if we acquire a stressed asset in north Karnataka were we are very strong, but in Rajasthan, we still have room even after Binani acquisition,” he added. According to Binani Cement's website, it has a global manufacturing capacity of 11.25 mtpa with a domestic capacity of 6.25 mtpa and an integrated plant in China and grinding units in Dubai. UltraTech Cement has agreed to pay ?6,000 crore upfront and the rest in equity. Internal study This means that the banks will get over and above ?6,000 crore they are trying to recover from the sale of stressed Binani Cement asset. Ashok Gupta, Director (Legal Services), Aditya Birla Management Corporation, said the Group has done enough analysis and internal study on the market before placing the bid for Binani Cement and there should not be any problem in getting the Competition Commission’s approval if UltraTech Cement emerges as the top bidder. There are about 15 cement companies in the (northern) region where Binani Cement plant is located and even after the acquisition UltraTech Cement market share will be closer to 20 per cent, while the CCI is comfortable with one company having market share of 25 to 40 per cent, he added. On the issue of price cartelisation by the government on the cement industry, Gupta said this allegation is there since the sector was liberalised in 1969 and earlier cases were filed almost every month. Given the huge competition among 60-70 companies and different cost structure for each companies, it is impossible for cement manufacturers to indulge in cartelisation. Cement prices are rising because of various factors including the increase in cost of land and mines acquisition, transportation expenses have gone up in the last few years, he said. Asked on the strategy of cement companies to lower production to keep prices high, Gupta said companies cannot keep on producing cement just because they have the capacity as they have to recover fixed cost and operation expenses to stay profitable....
274 Mahindra Electric to invest additional Rs 400 cr at Karnataka plant M&M 17 Feb, 2018 Mahindra Electric, a part of diversified Mahindra group, today said it plans to invest additional Rs 400 crore at its Karnataka facility over the next five years to ramp up capacity as well as set up testing infrastructure for batteries. The company has already invested Rs 600 crore in the facility since 2010. "We plan to invest Rs 400 crore in Karnataka over the next five years to increase capacity to 20,000 units per annum," Mahindra Electric CEO Mahesh Babu told PTI. He said that the capital would be deployed to upgrade skill development at the company's facility near Bengaluru. The plant currently has a manufacturing capacity to roll out 5,000 units per annum. The facility rolls out E20 plus as well as electric kits which get installed at Mahindra vehicles at company's other facilities as well. Mahindra also manufactures other electric models like E-Verito and E-Supro. Karnataka government is initiating an electric mobility awareness campaign in the state from tomorrow. Mahindra would start with deliveries of e-Verito cars to Bengaluru-based fleet operator Baghirathi Travel Solutions in order to commemorate the event....
275 Reliance Communications to reduce debt by Rs25,000cr from monetization of telecom infrastructure RCOM 17 Feb, 2018 The shareholders of Reliance Communications have approved a plan to monetize the Spectrum, Towers, Fiber, Telecom Infrastructure and other assets of the company. After the asset sale, the debt and liabilities of Reliance Communications would reduce by ~Rs25,000cr by prepayment of debts as well as transfer of spectrum payments. With this transaction, the company’s asset monetization is on the track to meet the March 2018 deadline. Post the various asset sales, Reliance Communications will consist of a stable and profitable B2B focused businesses. This business would include Indian and Global Enterprise, Internet Data Centres and the largest private submarine cable network in the world. This development would have a positive effect on a stock that had been impacted by a loss making B2C mobile network business. Reliance Communications Ltd is currently trading at Rs 27.8, down by Rs0.15 or 0.54% from its previous closing of Rs27.95 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs28.45 and has touched a high and low of Rs29 and Rs27.65 respectively. The BSE group 'A' stock of face value Rs5 has touched a 52 week high of Rs41.77 on 29-Dec-2017 and a 52 week low of Rs9.6 on 15-Nov-2017. Last one week high and low of the scrip stood at Rs30.55 and Rs25.2 respectively. The promoters holding in the company stood at 52.96 % while Institutions and Non-Institutions held 14.64 % and 31.4 % respectively....
276 Savings from Idea Vodafone merger deal to cross $10 billion: Aditya Birla Group IDEA 16 Feb, 2018 Aditya Birla Group expects savings from the merger between group company Idea Cellular Ltd and Vodafone Group Plc’s India unit to be significantly more than the $10 billion it forecast in March last year, group chief financial officer Sushil Agarwal said in an interview. The benefits accruing out of the Idea-Vodafone merger will increase on account of savings made by both Idea Cellular and Vodafone India Ltd because of synergies in capital and operating expenditure as the group now expects the merger to be completed much before the original deadline of September 2018. Mint on 15 January reported that Idea-Vodafone will start functioning as a single entity from April. The group also expects pricing pressure to moderate soon. “Given the large synergies that we had announced, we had indicated that there would be $10 billion savings which will come and since the merger is likely to consummated ahead of what we had announced... as of now it looks like we will be ahead of the original time line...so that $10 billion will become a larger number. That’s a large sum for any company,” Agarwal said. The rationale behind Idea-Vodafone merger in five charts The Idea-Vodafone merger was earlier expected to be completed by the first half of calendar year 2018. Both Vodafone and Idea have received approval from the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), the Competition Commission of India (CCI) and the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) and now await the final green light from the department of telecom (DoT) for the proposed merger. Agarwal expects DoT approval to come soon. “Post merger, there is a lot of complementary positions that we have between us and Vodafone. There would be some opex (operating expenditure) saving. There would be some capex (capital expenditure) saving—depending upon which item you pick up. A few things will start getting reflected immediately,” he said. That would be good news for Agarwal as well as the Mumbai-based conglomerate whose other companies such as Grasim Ltd have taken a hit on account of losses made by Idea Cellular Ltd. For instance, Grasim factored in a loss of Rs359 crore in its December quarter earnings on Wednesday, following from its 28% stake in Idea and treating the company as its associate. Do Idea Cellular and Vodafone need to be recapitalized? Idea Cellular’s loss tripled to Rs1,285 crore during the quarter ended 31 December from Rs384 crore in the year-ago period. “Over a period of time, if you would have noticed, the prices have been improving from the new competitor also. Serious consolidation has taken place, which is the most important piece. Given the merger which is round the corner, ... (we will) become the largest mobile company in the country. In this background, with the sector improving, I am sure all these numbers will be behind us,” Agarwal said. To better compete with rivals, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular announced a merger in March. Considered to be one of the most complex mergers in India, it will create the world’s second largest and India’s largest telecom operator, surpassing Bharti Airtel Ltd. Since the Idea-Vodafone merger itself is the result of consolidation triggered by a price war started by Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd, it is unlikely that the merged entity will be a price warrior itself. Do Idea and Vodafone’s merger terms need a rethink? It will focus on profitability and revenue. “When you do business, you do it to make money. In that background, if everyone makes a normal commercial return, I think we will not see the pressure and stress that the sector is seeing today,” Agarwal added. Post-consolidation, the industry is likely to turn healthier and more stable than it was a year ago. Still, challenges remain with the industry saddled with debt of around Rs4.5 trillion and Rs3 trillion in spectrum payment liabilities to the government....
277 Zee Learn To Invest Rs. 200 Crore In Over 44% Stake In MT Educare MTEDUCARE 16 Feb, 2018 Zee Learn To Invest Rs. 200 Crore In Over 44% Stake In MT Educare Zee Learn is investing through a preferential allotment of equity shares for a stake of 44.53% in the expanded share capital of MT Educare Business | NDTV Profit Team | Updated: February 15, 2018 11:24 IST by Taboola Sponsored Links Sponsored Here's Another Way to Develop Node.js IoT Applications (Intel) Check your CIBIL Score FREE - In just 2 minutes! (wishfin.com) 3 SHARES EMAIL PRINT COMMENTS Zee Learn To Invest Rs 200 Crore In Over 44% Stake In MT Educare Zee Learn transaction is subject to the fulfillment of customary closing conditions Mumbai: Zee Learn Limited announced on Thursday that it has signed definitive agreements to Invest Rs. 200 crores in MT Educare Limited through a preferential allotment of equity shares (face value Rs. 10 per share) for a stake of 44.53% in the expanded share capital of MT Educare Limited, the company said in a stock exchange filing. The execution of definitive agreements has triggered the requirement to make an Open Offer and the regulations therewith will be complied. The transaction is subject to the fulfillment of customary closing conditions and the requisite statutory and regulatory approvals. Commenting on the transaction, Debshankar Mukhopadhyay, CEO, Zee Learn said, "Post subscription, Zee Learn Ltd would hold a 44.53% stake in MT Educare Ltd. The acquisition of MT Educare Ltd is aligned with our strategy to increase our footprint across segments in the Education sector and consolidate our offerings through the digital route." "This stake acquisition will strengthen our Pre Schools and K12 offerings through Kidzee & Mount Litera Zee Schools, respectively, and will also mark our entry into the high growth market of Edutech through Robomate and test preparation / tutorials through other brands like Mahesh Tutorials, Lakshya and Chitale classes," he added. This acquisition is expected to help Zee Learn make inroads into the government supported skilling and vocational segment where MT Educare has a significant presence. Post the acquisition, Zee Learn's education offerings on a consolidated basis would reach around 3.50 lakhs students, making it one of the biggest education companies globally in terms of number of students served. With this association, Zee Learn will create high value content and enrich the student experience by leveraging the strong experience of the academic teams of both the companies. Zee Learn is confident that this acquisition will further improve and strengthen the shareholder value of both the companies and we are now equipped for an exponential growth in the future." MT Educare has over 250 coaching centres spread across 135 locations nationwide, with a faculty strength of over 1,100 well trained teachers. At MT Educare, technology enabled learning models, advanced teaching methodologies and learning management systems have replaced the conventional chalk and talk model of teaching students. ...
278 M&M inks agreement for investing in Zoom Car M&M 16 Feb, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) has signed an agreement for investing in Zoom Car India and Zoom Car Inc., USA. Zoom Car India is 100% subsidiary of Zoom Car Inc., USA (collectively Zoom Car). Zoom Car India is a self - drive Mobility Company based out of Bangalore, India. It operates in the shared mobility space in India by providing vehicles, and recently also bicycles, on a self-driven shared usage basis. It operates a fleet of over 2,500 vehicles in 27 cities across India. It has team strength of over 200 people. M&M is the flagship company of the Mahindra Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. Amongst the various business interests of its parent group, the company is mainly involved in the automobile manufacturing. It is one of the leading auto companies of India. ...
279 India Says No Electric Vehicle Policy Needed, Will Frame Action Plan OTHER 16 Feb, 2018 India doesn’t see the need for any explicit policy on electric vehicles even as automakers want the government to come out with a clear roadmap to achieve its target to turn all vehicles electric by 2030. There is no need for an electric vehicles policy for India, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari said at a press conference in New Delhi. He didn’t offer any other comments. Amitabh Kant, chief executive officer of NITI Aayog explained why. “Day-to-day technological innovations are taking place in the automobile sector. We are making an action plan on electric vehicles which will be given to all ministries and we will monitor it,” he said. “We don’t require a policy on it as such.” Kant was speaking after the inauguration of two charging stations at NITI Aayog, the coordinating agency for electric mobility. “Technology is ahead of rules and regulations. We cannot bind it. The government will take a final call on whether a policy is required or not.” The government aims to turn all cars electric in less than a decade and a half to cut emissions and reduce reliance on fossil fuels, one of the biggest contributors to the nation’s import bill. Automakers are hesitant to introduce electric vehicles until the government frames a clear policy on electric vehicles. The move to not have a policy got a thumbs up from RC Bhargava, chairman of India's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. “In India, we need action rather than things written on paper, because policy is all paper,” Bhargava told BloombergQuint. “More important would be an action plan and an action plan which is implemented”. Bhargava added that any plan to speed up electric vehicle adoption in India should be dynamic and must evolve to keep pace with the technological developments in the automotive space. The government hasn’t yet come out with a clear policy on electric mobility, Roland Volger, managing director and chief executive officer of Mercedes Benz in India, had earlier told BloombergQuint. “There is a question about where the energy for an electric vehicle push will come from.”...
280 At Jet Airways, things getting worse before they get any better JETAIRWAYS 16 Feb, 2018 Jet Airways (India) Ltd was supposed to be a turnaround story. Its shares have risen more than 60% from its lows in October, backed by the company’s comments that it plans to cut operational costs by a wide margin. But things are getting worse before they get better. In the December quarter, the airline made Rs4.28 in revenue for every available seat kilometre (RASK) it flew. But thanks to higher fuel expenses, it spent Rs4.33 available seat kilometre in costs (CASK). Operationally, the airline is bleeding. It reported a pre-tax profit of Rs186 crore last quarter, but this was thanks to non-operating income such as gains from forex fluctuations. A year ago, things were barely better. RASK and CASK had both amounted to Rs4.22. But the fact that things have worsened is clearly matter of concern. Unsurprisingly, Jet Airways’ shares fell by over 5% after Q3 results were announced. “The fact that core operations continue to be a drag is worrying; profit has been accruing either from sale-and-leaseback deals or from other one-off income sources,” says an analyst at a domestic brokerage firm. But the fact that Jet Airways’ shares are neck and neck with SpiceJet Ltd with respect to one-year returns suggests that investors are keeping the faith. This is largely based on the fact that Jet Airways’ margins are meaningfully below that of its peers, which leaves ample scope for improvement. While this remains the hope and expectation in the case of Jet Airways, peers InterGlobe Aviation Ltd (that runs IndiGo) and SpiceJet are already growing profits at a brisk pace. While both airlines were hit by an increase in costs, it was more than compensated by a 10.3% and 8.7% increase in RASK, respectively. The spread between RASK and CASK jumped 57% year-on-year in the case of IndiGo, and rose 17% for SpiceJet. Of course, it isn’t entirely fair to compare Jet Airways with these airlines, as the former gets over 50% of its revenues from international operations. As pointed out in this column earlier, yields in routes involving Middle East destinations have been under pressure and have been dragging down overall performance. Whatever the underlying reasons, the proof of the pudding is in its eating. And Jet Airways’ financial performance has been disappointing quarter after quarter. From the looks of it, investors have put the cart before the horse....
281 Torrent Power enters into agreement for setting up Wind Power Projects TORNTPOWER 15 Feb, 2018 Torrent Power has entered into a contract with Siemens Gamesa Renewable Power for setting up of Wind Power Projects up to the aggregate capacity of 120 MW. The arrangement includes acquiring of the 100% share capital of the two SPVs established for the purpose of development and implementation of the said projects at Rs 1,00,000 each from Siemens Gamesa Renewable Power. Torrent Power is an integrated utility engaged in the business of power generation, transmission and distribution with operations in the states of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh. ...
282 Indian Acrylics to expand spinning mill capacity INDIAN ACRY 15 Feb, 2018 Indian Acrylics has received an approval for expansion of capacity of Spinning Mill by adding additional 6500 spindles at an estimated cost of Rs 32 crore to increase the production of worsted Acrylic Yarn. The Board of Directors of the company at its meeting held on February 14, 2018, approved the same. Indian Acrylics is the largest and most efficient acrylic fiber manufacturer of India and an important player in the global industry with exports to Asia, Europe and the Middle East. ...
283 Mahindra Susten’s storage-cum-solar project in the Andaman islands scrapped OTHER 15 Feb, 2018 Mahindra Susten’s landmark storage-cum-solar power project in the Andaman and Nicobar islands has been scrapped. Mahindra Susten had last year won the bid to set up the 28-MWh project for NLC (formerly Neyveli Lignite Corporation). Chairman and Managing Director at NLC India, Sarat Kumar Acharya, told BusinessLine, “There has been a change in requirement and we will be going for a fresh tender accordingly.” NLC India will now call for bids for a smaller 8 MWh project. Bids for two other projects of 1 MWh each have already been called by the Military Engineering Services in the Union Territory. Commenting on the cancellation of the project, Director at India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA), Debi Prasad Dash, said the frequent cancellation of tender may send negative signals to foreign as well as Indian companies keen to enter the energy storage space. In the last three years, more than 10 energy storage tenders have been cancelled. NTPC too had scrapped a storage-linked solar project even before it was awarded. On the NLC project, early bidders had said the tender requirements were restrictive and the project was difficult to execute given the location of the islands. On emerging the winner, a Mahindra Susten statement had said that the company had emerged as the lowest bidder at ?289 crore which is 38 per cent lower than Government of India estimates leading to a saving of approximately ?70 crore in Viability Gap Fund grant. The plant was expected to be commissioned by April 2019. “This project will have 20 MW of solar and 28 MWhr of battery and will be one of the largest project of its kind in entire Asia,” the statement had said. The islands currently meet all their existing power demand through diesel-run power generators. The Centre has aimed to generate the entire power requirement of the Andaman & Nicobar Islands through clean energy and was working on means, including solar power and Liquefied Natural Gas plants, for the same....
284 Adani Enterprises looking for foreign coal mines despite challenges in Australia ADANIENT 15 Feb, 2018 Indian resources conglomerate Adani Enterprises Ltd is looking to buy mines in countries such as Indonesia, a company executive told Reuters on Wednesday, despite its struggles to develop a controversial coal project in Australia. The company already owns a coal mine in Indonesia, but has been unable to secure financing for the long-delayed Carmichael mine in Australia amid numerous court challenges from environmental groups concerned about climate change and potential damage to the Great Barrier Reef. "We have a mine in Indonesia, and we are looking for more options there," Rajendra Singh, chief operating officer of Adani's coal trading business, said on the sidelines of the Coaltrans India conference in the coastal town of Bambolim in Goa state. "We're also keeping our eyes open for options in other areas like south African countries, countries like Russia. We are not eyeing for specific grades, we are looking for viable options. We mainly look at reserves, production costs and logistics." He said there was "opportunity in the U.S." as well given that India imports coal from there. Singh, however, did not say if any deal was in the works. Adani is also India's biggest trader of coal, with volumes of 81 million tonnes in the fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2017, sourced mainly from Indonesia and Africa. India, the world's second biggest coal importer after China, brought in a total of 190 million tonnes last fiscal year. Singh said the company's market share in coal trading in the country was going to increase after it extended to retail markets, especially brick kilns and sponge irons. The company has also recently started trading coal in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, in addition to its operations in Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam and China, he said. "Asian countries are going to add a lot of demand in the coal market, especially South Asian countries like Bangladesh and Pakistan," Singh said. "On the supply side, there are limitations. Tonnages are increasing, but quality is decreasing. And to compensate for quality, they have to increase tonnages." Pakistan imported 11.2 million tonnes of coal last year, up from around 3.4 million tonnes bought in 2013. Its purchases are expected to jump to 40 million tonnes by 2025. Populous and power-starved Bangladesh is also ramping up coal imports to light up new homes in an election year. Adani Group's Adani Power in November signed a long-term agreement to sell electricity to Bangladesh....
285 Jeweler to Stars Said to Be Accused of Massive India Bank Fraud OTHER 15 Feb, 2018 One of India’s biggest banks has accused jeweler Nirav Modi -- who’s dressed stars including Kate Winslet and Priyanka Chopra -- of involvement in a multi-billion dollar fraud that could extend to other lenders, said people familiar with the matter. Punjab National Bank filed a complaint with the Central Bureau of Investigation, the federal investigation agency, alleging that Modi and companies linked to him fraudulently acquired PNB guarantees worth 100 billion rupees ($1.6 billion) that they later used to obtain loans from abroad, the people said, asking not to be identified as the details aren’t public. The bank alleged that Modi worked with some junior PNB officials to get the letters, the people said. PNB had already filed a case against Modi two weeks ago -- the details of which have been made public -- alleging a 2.8 billion rupee fraud and said it would check if the impact was deeper. It told the exchanges on Wednesday -- without naming anyone -- that a $1.8 billion fraud was detected at a single branch in India’s financial hub. Officials detected some fraudulent and unauthorized transactions in one of its branches in Mumbai “for the benefit of a few select account holders with their apparent connivance,” PNB said in the statement. “Based on these transactions other banks appear to have advanced money to these customers abroad.” ‘Look Out Notice’ Press Trust of India and ET Now television channel had earlier reported about the new 100 billion rupee case against Modi. Rajiv Kumar, India’s top banking bureaucrat, told BloombergQuint that the case is an isolated one that dates back to 2011. About 10 PNB employees have been suspended pending a CBI investigation, he said. He didn’t name any of the accused. An email to the banking regulator was unanswered. An external spokesman for Modi didn’t reply to an email seeking comment sent Wednesday. An email and phone call made to Modi’s office was unanswered. Modi himself hasn’t publicly commented on the previous case dated Jan. 29, when PNB exhorted investigators to issue a “look out notice” so that Modi and his alleged accomplices “may not leave the country to avoid process of law against them.” Authorities filed complaints against Diamond R US, Solar Exports and Stellar Diamonds, saying Modi and his family are partners in these firms. Antwerp Modi grew up in Antwerp, the son and grandson of diamantaires, according to his website. Apart from India, he has boutiques in cities including New York, London, Beijing, Hong Kong and Singapore. His company Firestar International Ltd. plans a 10 billion rupee initial public offering, Moneycontrol.com had reported in September citing unnamed sources. Firestar isn’t linked to to the complaints made in January, the company said in a Feb. 5 email sent through an external spokeswoman. This external spokeswoman didn’t immediately comment when asked about the latest allegations. According to details of that older complaint, PNB alleged that Modi, his wife and brother, and “other unknown persons” had worked with some named PNB officials at a Mumbai branch to obtain letters of understanding from PNB in 2010 without following due procedure. In order to avoid detection, they hadn’t made transaction entries into PNB’s systems but had transmitted instructions to the Hong Kong branches of Allahabad Bank and Axis Bank Ltd. through the SWIFT global payment system. To read a Gadfly column on India’s bad loan crisis, click here Modi had claimed to need the cash to pay his import bills but the 2.8 billion rupees raised weren’t used for this purpose, PNB had alleged, without elaborating. Emails to Axis and Allahabad banks were unanswered. There are no complaints against Axis and Allahabad Bank. The case came to light when Modi’s companies sought a fresh loan last month. By then the PNB official they had allegedly been working with had retired, according to PNB’s complaint. Since there was no sanctioned limit in the name of Modi’s companies, PNB said it asked for 100 percent cash margin to issue the letters of understanding. When Modi’s companies insisted that they had used the facility before, PNB said it started digging. Investigative agencies have been informed about the latest fraud transactions, PNB said in the filing on Wednesday. The bank didn’t elaborate on what impact the fraud may have on its finances and it didn’t name the other lenders which could be hurt. Shares Plunge “So far there is no clarity on impact on the lender’s bottom line from this,” said Asutosh Kumar Mishra, a Mumbai-based banking analyst at Reliance Securities Ltd. “There is no clarity on whether these transactions are reversed, whether the bank is holding collateral that could back part of these transactions or whether enforcement authorities will be able to recover this amount.” The allegedly fraudulent transactions are the equivalent of eight times the lender’s 2017 net income of about 13.2 billion rupees ($206 million), exchange filings show. PNB shares fell 9.8 percent in Mumbai on Wednesday, the steepest drop since August 2015. The case poses further questions about the health of India’s banks, which are already grappling with one of the worst bad-loan ratios among big economies. It’s also likely to create a challenge for Chief Executive Officer Sunil Mehta, who took charge last May about a year after PNB and 12 other lenders were fined for violating rules on some $1 billion of foreign-exchange deals. Kate Winslet had worn Modi’s creations at the 2016 Oscars and said he’d donated to her foundation. Last year, Modi had signed up Priyanka Chopra -- star of the U.S. TV series Quantico -- as his brand ambassador....
286 Bharti Airtel to consider IPO for Africa business BHARTIARTL 15 Feb, 2018 Bharti Airtel has announced that the board of Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) BV has authorized its management to begin exploratory discussions of the possibility of a public listing. An IPO of Bharti Airtel’s Africa operations will help monetize their investment in a time when it is facing strong competition from Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd in India. The Africa business of Bharti Airtel has recently turned profitable and enjoys a strong position in African markets. The company’s aggregate customer base in Africa has increased to 84.1mn at the end of Q3FY18, an increase of 9.4% yoy. In October, Airtel combined its operations with Tigo in Ghana. Shortly after that, Airtel’s subsidiary in Rwanda announced the acquisition of Tigo Rwanda Ltd, making Airtel the second largest telecom firm in that country. This divestment of the Africa business is part of the company’s steps to reduce debt. On February 5, the company announced that Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (Singtel) would invest Rs2,649 crore in Bharti Telecom Ltd, the promoter company of Airtel, through a preferential allotment of shares. The purpose of these funds would be to reduce debt. In December, the company along with a group entity, sold 20% stake in its DTH arm Bharti Telemedia Ltd to private equity firm Warburg Pincus for $350mn. Bharti Airtel is a wireless operator with largest market share among domestic mobile service providers. As on December, 2017, Bharti Airtel had an Indian subscriber base of 29cr users in its wireless business. The company also had a user base of 1.39cr users in its Direct-To-Home (DTH) business. Further, Bharti Airtel had an overseas (Sri Lanka and Africa) subscriber base of 8.6cr users at the end of FY17. We expect the company to report revenue de-growth of 0.4% over FY17-19E due to ~18% reduction in domestic ARPU over FY17-19E. However, EBITDA margin is expected to rise by 488bps to 41.8% in FY19E, as profitability of Airtel Africa would sharply improve due to subscriber growth of 4.5% over FY17-20E. We estimate PAT CAGR of 32% due to decreasing debt levels from asset disinvestment. The stock is currently trading at 23.7x FY20E EPS. Bharti Airtel is currently trading at Rs 431.15, down by Rs 3.05 or 0.7% from its previous closing of Rs 434.2 on the BSE....
287 Britannia Industries planning to add 50 new products by next fiscal BRITANNIA 14 Feb, 2018 Britannia Industries is planning to launch around 50 new products by the end of next financial year. The products will be launched under its existing as well as new categories in an effort to be a total food company. The company will launch dairy products and croissants by October-November this year through its joint venture with Greek cakes and confectionery major Chipita. Britannia Industries, one of the India’s biggest brands of the country, has a market share of over 33%. More-than-a-century old Britannia has launched big brands in FMCG Segment. The company is expanding its customer base by launching new products and renovating existing ones. ...
288 Astron Paper commences commercial production at Kutch plant ASTRON 14 Feb, 2018 Astron Paper & Board Mill has commenced commercial production at plant located at Survey No 64/1, Chubdak, Bhuj-Anjar Highway, Bhuj - Kutch (Unit 2) effective from February 13, 2018. The said plant will be manufacturing kraft paper. Astron Paper & Board Mill is engaged in the manufacturing of kraft paper (paperboard or cardboard). It comes up with the eco-friendly concept and working towards goal of converting waste in to wealth. ...
289 Apollo Tyres to acquire shareholding in KT Telematic Solutions APOLLO 14 Feb, 2018 Apollo Tyres has received an approval to acquire shareholding in KT Telematic Solutions. The Committee of Directors - Investments at their meeting held on February 13, 2018 approved the same. KT Telematic Solutions is engaged in the business of fleet management solutions, providing telematic analytics for truck and bus, with the aim to help its fleet customers to manage their fleets efficiently. Apollo Tyres is one of the leading tyre manufacturers in India with its product portfolio spread across tubeless and tube type tyres for cars, suvs, trucks, buses etc. ...
290 The Orissa Slurry Pipeline That Could Muddy Essar Steel’s Insolvency Bid OTHER 14 Feb, 2018 Indian lenders, in the midst of finalising a resolution plan for debt laden Essar Steel Ltd, have a new problem on hand. One of the bidders for the asset is trying to gain control of a key pipeline which supplies raw material to Essar Steel’s Odisha plant, even before it secures ownership of Essar Steel. Should it succeed, competing bidders may find the asset less attractive and more complex to operate. The bidder complicating matters is Numetal Mauritius - an SPV in which the Ruia family has an interest. On Jan. 16, BloombergQuint reported that a Singapore based trusteeship, of which a Ruia family member is the beneficial owner, holds 30 percent in Numetal Mauritius. In an email response, Numetal confirmed that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Orissa Slurry Pipeline India Ltd. This is a first step that will allow us to make an unconditional bid for Essar Steel. Price and conditions cannot be disclosed at this time. Numetal’s largest shareholder is VTB with other minority shareholders including Rewant Ruia. Spokesperson for Numetal Mauritius Numetal Mauritius and ArcelorMittal – which is bidding through its subsidiary ArcelorMittal India Pvt. Ltd. (AMIPL) – submitted bids for Essar Steel as the deadline closed at 5 pm today. The proposed bid for the pipeline has bankers seeing red. Particularly since recent amendments to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code bar defaulting promoters from bidding for their own assets until they clear overdues. The Ruia family has not done so yet and hence is not eligible to bid for Essar Steel. Given that, lenders, led by the State Bank of India, have decided to oppose Numetal Mauritius’ bid to buy out the slurry pipeline from a fund promoted by Srei Infrastructure Finance Ltd., two people in the know confirmed. The people, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the deal will have a significant bearing on the resolution plan for Essar Steel. Numetal Mauritius has proposed to buy a 70 percent stake in Orissa Slurry Pipeline Infrastructure Ltd. from the Srei-promoted India Growth Opportunities Fund for around Rs 1,500 crore, the two people quoted above said. The deal is still not closed and is subject to conditions and approvals, these people added. The Economic Times first reported the deal and the lenders’ decision to oppose it. An email sent to Essar Steel seeking confirmation of the transaction was not answered. SBI also did not respond to an email seeking comment. The Importance Of The Slurry Pipeline The Orissa Slurry Pipeline is responsible for transporting about half the raw material required for Essar Steel's iron pellet plant in Paradip, Odisha. The 253 kilometre pipeline is the cheapest way to bring in raw material. Whoever controls the pipeline, would have considerable influence over the plant's production capabilities and thereby on Essar Steel's ability to repay its debt. "The pipeline is a critical part of the infrastructure to run the steel plant for long term success. With it, you will also get a captive iron ore mine, which insulates the operations from global price movements,” said Rakesh Arora, managing partner at Go India Advisors and a long-time watcher of the mining and metals sector. “If the pipeline access is not part of the deal (for Essar Steel), it will impact pricing,” added Arora. Essar Steel owes banks roughly Rs 48,000 crore and is one of the 12 largest accounts being resolved under the IBC, following instructions from the Reserve Bank of India in June 2017. Recognizing the importance of the pipeline to resolution the process, the interim resolution professional, Satish Gupta, had sought a court order to attach OSPIL to Essar Steel. However, in an order dated February 7, 2018, the Ahmedabad bench of the National Company Law Tribunal said that it cannot take any decision in the matter since a dispute over the ownership of OSPIL is pending in the Kolkata High Court. Gupta did not respond to an email from BloombergQuint. The Ownership Dispute Here the story takes another twist. The India Growth Opportunities Fund, which is in the process of selling stake in OSPIL, had purchased the 70 percent stake from Essar Steel via a sale and leaseback agreement in 2015. By March 2015, physical possession of the pipeline assets had been transferred to the India Growth Opportunities Fund, show the documents filed with the Ahmedabad NCLT. In 2016, OSPIL sought to cancel the deal after lenders to it, who were also lenders to Essar Steel, opposed it. This was because the bankers felt that the sale would not help them upgrade Essar Steel to a standard account from a non performing account, said one of the bankers quoted above. Srei Infrastructure opposed this. In May 2016, Srei Infrastructure approached the Kolkata High Court to claim ownership over the pipeline company, in its capacity as the promoter of the India Growth Opportunities Fund. It argued that the purchase had already concluded. It is worth mentioning here that the then Ruia group promoted Essar Oil, with an investment of Rs 1,195 crore, was the largest investor in the India Growth Opportunities Fund which had a corpus of Rs 1260 crore. This fact emerged from a separate order passed by market regulator SEBI in a case unrelated to the ownership of OSPIL. The Securities Exchange Board of India was looking into whether Srei Multiple Asset Investment Trust and Srei Asset Investment Managers Ltd. had followed the regulator’s Alternative Investment Fund guidelines. The India Growth Opportunities Fund fell under the umbrella of Srei Multiple Asset Investment Trust. The Legal View With the dispute over OSPIL’s ownership still pending before the Kolkatta High Court, the Ahmedabad bench of the NCLT, in its order, said it cannot take a decision on the IRP’s request to attach the pipeline asset to Essar Steel. But is the IRP’s request legally tenable? Alok Dhir, founding partner of law firm Dhir & Dhir Associates told BloombergQuint that clubbing distinct companies together may be a case of overreach. You can’t have your cake and eat it too. Corporate entities are distinct from each other and if lenders feel that one asset is critical for the value to be maintained in another, they should insist in the beginning that these two be clubbed together. To go across companies and band them together would be a case of overreach. That would be contrary to the thought behind the insolvency and bankruptcy code. Alok Dhir, Founding Partner, Dhir & Dhir Associates While it is unclear which way the dispute will go, potential investors in Essar Steel will likely weigh the situation with the pipeline asset before they structure their bids....
291 Mahindra Holidays’ arm acquires entire stake in Visionsbolaget 12191 AB MHRIL 14 Feb, 2018 Mahindra Holidays & Resorts’ step down subsidiary -- Holiday Club Sweden AB has acquired 100% stake in Visionsbolaget 12191 AB, Sweden and so, Visionsbolaget 12191 AB has become a step-down subsidiary of the company. Further, Visionsbolaget 12191 AB has acquired 100% stake in Visionsbolaget 12192 AB and accordingly, Visionsbolaget 12192 AB, Sweden has also become a step-down subsidiary of the company. Mahindra Holidays & Resorts is India’s leading player in the vacation ownership industry offering quality family holidays primarily through vacation ownership memberships. ...
292 RIL seeks Andhra Pradesh support to set up submarine cable landing station in Vizag RELIANCE 14 Feb, 2018 Mukesh Ambani-headed Reliance Industries (RIL) has sought the Andhra Pradesh government's support for setting up an international submarine cable landing station (CLS) at Visakhapatnam, an official said. Ambani mooted the proposal for setting up the CLS during his two-hour meeting with Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu at the Secretariat here tonight. The CLS will connect the east coast to Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Myanmar, south-east Asia and onwards. No further details of the proposed project were revealed because of "strategic reasons", the official said. RIL has also proposed to set up state-of-the-art telecom and information technology infrastructure on a 10-acre site "to propel AP into a data superpower", he said. The Indian industry behemoth has also come forward to set up an electronic manufacturing cluster on a 150-acre site near Tirupati to produce mobile and electronic set-top boxes. "Reliance wanted the state government to promote clusters of educational institutions like ITIs and diploma colleges in the vicinity to create employment right after education. "Reliance has also asked the governemnt to develop a workmen housing corridor in the vicinity of Tirupati Growth Corridor. Financial aspects of these projects have not been disclosed yet," a senior official present at the meeting said. Reliance will also set up a 150 MW solar power plant and data centre on its own site near Samalkot in East Godavari district. After the meeting, Naidu drove Ambani to his riverfront residence at Undavalli and hosted dinner....
293 Lupin launches gTamiflu in US LUPIN 14 Feb, 2018 Lupin has launched generic of Tamiflu Capsules, 30 mg, 45 mg, and 75 mg in the US market. The drug was approved on January 9, 2018, and the company has immediately launched it in the US market. Tamiflu (Oseltamivir Phosphate) is a Hoffman-La Roche, Inc’s drug which had annual sales of approximately USD 467.8 million in the US as per IMS data in October 2017. Oseltamivir Phosphate Capsules USP, 30 mg, 45 mg, and 75 mg had annual sales of approximately USD 467.8 million in the US. (IMS MAT October 2017). While this news is positive for Lupin, it is also negative for Natco Pharma and Cadila Healthcare who already have their gTamiflu version in the US market. Lupin is currently trading at Rs841.8, up by Rs20.9 or 2.55% from its previous closing of Rs820.9 on the BSE....
294 ITC proposes investment worth over Rs 1,100 cr in UP ITC 12 Feb, 2018 ITC CEO Sanjeev Puri today met Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath at his official residence here and proposed investments worth over Rs 1,100 crore in the state. An UP government spokesperson today said that during his meeting with the UP chief minister, Puri proposed investments in food and consumer goods, green energy and establishment of a logistics hub in Ghaziabad worth more than Rs 1,100 crore. The ITC CEO also praised the investment promotion and industrial development policies of the state government, and said that his company is willing to expand its business activities in the state. Speaking on the occasion, Adityanath said the state government is making every effort to encourage ‘ease of doing business’ Policies pertaining to different sectors have been implemented, in which there are attractive provisions for establishing industries. He said that influenced by these facilities and developmental works, the investors are considering UP as an ideal state for investment. The chief minister also invited Puri to participate in the two-day Investors’ Summit to be held in Lucknow beginning February 21....
295 L&T’s arm bags order in excess of Rs 2,200 crore LT 12 Feb, 2018 Larsen & Toubro’s (L&T) arm - L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering (LTHE) has signed a major field development EPC contract with Al Dhafra Petroleum Operations Company, Abu Dhabi, UAE, with a value in excess of Rs 2,200 crore. Al Dhafra Petroleum is a joint venture between ADNOC and Korea National Oil Corporation (KNOC) and GS Energy, which is represented by Korean Abu Dhabi Oil Consortium (KADOC). The scope of the contract includes Engineering, Procurement, Construction & Commissioning of flow lines, gathering facilities & pipelines to transfer crude oil & gas from Haliba fields to processing facility at Asab and installation of 132 kV and 33 kV overhead electrical transmission lines to supply power. Larsen & Toubro (L&T) is a major technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services conglomerate, with global operations. ...
296 Indians Pay $600 Million for Stake in Abu Dhabi Oil Concession OTHER 12 Feb, 2018 Indian companies agreed to pay $600 million for a stake in one of Abu Dhabi’s biggest offshore oil concessions, securing a share in the emirate’s crude production for the first time. State-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp. and two other Indian companies will take a 10 percent share of the concession to pump crude from the Lower Zakum field, under a 40-year contract in partnership with Abu Dhabi National Oil Co., according to an Adnoc statement. Adnoc signed the deal during a visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the capital of the United Arab Emirates on Saturday. Abu Dhabi, which holds most of the U.A.E.’s oil reserves, is looking for new partners at its offshore fields in the Persian Gulf as the current production concession for some deposits expires next month. Partners in Abu Dhabi’s fields generally receive an amount of crude oil commensurate with their stakes in return for tax and royalty payments and investment to boost output. The Indian companies will pay 2.2 billion dirhams ($600 million) to Abu Dhabi for their stake in the field, according to the statement. That puts the overall value of the concession at $6 billion. Adnoc, which retains 60 percent holdings in its fields, aims to award rights for an additional 30 percent of Lower Zakum as well as rights to two other offshore crude blocks. The Indian consortium is comprised of ONGC’s wholly owned subsidiary ONGC Videsh, Indian Oil Corp., and Bharat PetroResources, which is a 100 percent subsidiary of Bharat Petroleum Corp., according to the Adnoc statement. Adnoc Offshore, a subsidiary of Adnoc, will operate the concession on behalf of all the partners. Expanded production from its offshore reservoirs is part of Adnoc’s plans to raise its onshore and offshore output capacity to 3.5 million barrels a day by the end of 2018, according to the statement. Adnoc’s offshore fields currently produce about 1.4 million barrels a day, it said. Second-Biggest Buyer Current production at the Lower Zakum field is about 400,000 barrels a day, and the plan is to increase the plateau target to 450,000 barrels a day by 2025, according to a statement from ONGC Videsh. The Indian win gives the country a direct stake in Middle Eastern barrels. India is the second-biggest buyer of U.A.E. crude behind Japan, according Bloomberg tanker tracking. The deal enables Adnoc to tap demand in the world’s second-most populous nation. The producer has said it received more than 10 bids from companies seeking to work on the fields. “For India, it’s a way to secure a lot of long-term oil supply to help fuel growing demand,” said Edward Bell, a commodities analyst at lender Emirates NBD PJSC in Dubai. “For Adnoc it firms up a relationship with one of its biggest buyers and continues the company’s strategy of bringing the big Asian consumers into partnerships and joint projects.” The state producer signed deals last year with Chinese and Korean companies to partner in its main onshore fields for the first time. Adnoc is also seeking partnerships in refining and petrochemicals and may buy assets abroad to secure market share. Adnoc also signed on Saturday an agreement with the Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Ltd. for a storage facility in the southern Indian city of Mangalore, according to the Adnoc statement. The agreement covers the storage of 5.86 million barrels of Adnoc crude underground at the Karnataka facility. “The oil storage facility will help ensure India’s energy security, as well as enable Adnoc to efficiently and competitively meet market demand in India and across the fast-developing southeast Asian economies,” it said. ...
297 Aditya Birla Capital to launch ARC business this quarter ABCAPITAL 12 Feb, 2018 Aditya Birla Capital Ltd (ABCL), the financial services business of the $50 billion Aditya Birla Group, will begin investing in its asset reconstruction company (ARC) and start business this quarter, a top company executive said. The company, which has presence across insurance, asset management and private equity, among others, is trying to tap into the Rs10-trillion bad loan opportunity in India. “We got our in-principle approval from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in September to set up an ARC. That company will now get capitalized in this quarter. We will put the regulatory capital and start that business,” Ajay Srinivasan, chief executive officer of Aditya Birla Capital said in an interview. ABCL’s asset reconstruction business is housed under its subsidiary Aditya Birla ARC Ltd. “That business will then require an AIF (alternative investment fund) and we will probably also have a fund attached to it. That’s how typically a stressed assets business works. You have an ARC, and AIF and a fund. So, we will put all of those structures in place,” said Srinivasan. Srinivasan added that the group is open to partnering with foreign stressed assets investors for its business. “We will explore partnerships. There is a lot of interest. Many people have approached us and we are open to having discussions,” said Srinivasan. The bad loan problem in India has attracted several foreign investors, most of whom have tied up with Indian companies to tap into the opportunity. In 2016, Piramal Enterprises tied up with Bain Capital Credit to set up a $1 billion distressed assets investment platform. Caisse de Dépôt et Placement du Québec (CDPQ), the second-largest pension fund in Canada, has tied up with financial services firm Edelweiss Financial Services Ltd. The two parties have committed to deploying $750 million for acquiring stressed assets. Outlining the strategy of ABCL’s stressed assets platform, Srinivasan said the group will focus on mid-corporate and SME segments. “We are not setting up our stressed assets business for what’s in the NCLT (National Company Law Tribunal) already. We think there will be continued supply of NPAs going forward. We would look more at mid-corporate than large corporate. Many of the cases, today, in the NCLT are of larger size. Because we will be a start-up ARC, we would look at more mid-corporate, SME kind of stressed assets,” he said. The group’s stressed assets business will focus on turnaround situations, he said. “That is one of the things that we bring to the table as a group, because as a group we understand how to run a number of businesses. We believe that this business will become more and more of a turnaround type of business than a pure financial restructuring business,” said Srinivasan. On Friday, ABCL announced its financial results for the third quarter ended 31 December, with a 26% year-on-year increase in its consolidated revenue to Rs3,325 crore, while profit grew 33% to Rs617 crore. Total assets under management rose 31% to reach an all-time high of Rs2.99 trillion, while the group’s lending book rose 41% to reach Rs46,522 crore....
298 M&M fires on all cylinders to clock impressive profit growth M&M 12 Feb, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd (M&M) put up a decent show during the December quarter. Net profit rose a robust 16.9% to Rs1,306 crore from a year earlier. While the base-effect of a weak December 2016 quarter played out well for M&M, profit growth was also driven by power-packed sales. Tractors continued to drive performance, as had been the case in the past few quarters because of two consecutive years of good monsoon. Exports rose reasonably too. On the back of a 6.3% growth in sales of tractors, the division whose capacity is firing at 90% utilization levels, clocked a comfortable 110 basis points (bps) expansion in profit (before interest and tax) margin. One basis point is a hundredth of a percentage point. The auto division too contributed to the overall show by posting a 6.6% growth in sales. Better realizations on the domestic front came largely through sales of light commercial vehicles. While the medium and heavy commercial vehicles sales are improving, M&M’s management conceded that discounts were high. Further, the firm has not been able to regain its lost glory in utility vehicles (UV). Sales were flat as competition has raced ahead of the firm. A report by Prabhudas Lilladher Pvt. Ltd early this year expressed concern on the 14% drop in M&M’s market share in UVs over the last four years. Yet, on the whole, the auto division clocked a 140bps increase in margin. At the consolidated level, M&M along with Mahindra Vehicle Manufacturers’ Ltd (MVML) revved up its operating profit by 19.6% to Rs1,693 crore. While this mirrored the strong sales growth, the operating margin of 14.7%, although wider than the year-ago period, was about 100bps lower than analysts’ estimates. The drag was perhaps due to lower UV sales, challenging times for exports in the auto division and discounts being offered to push sales. In fact, even as most product lines are raking in decent sales growth, M&M could do well to sort out the UV business where it reigned supreme until the era of compact UVs took the firm by surprise and rivals captured the market. Analysts are hopeful that the low base of the recent past quarters and new launches in the segment should fuel UV sales growth in future. M&M’s shares too have recovered since last September when both the tractor and auto segment sales rose steadily and churned out robust profits. Adding to the optimism is the management’s statement that it expects “no headwinds in Q4FY2018 and FY2019” given the recovery in the rural economy, rural-oriented budget and the smooth transition to the goods and services tax. Even so, the risks of higher interest rates and transition away from diesel vehicles would be speed bumps that the firm along with others in the auto universe would have to contend with. Further, commodity prices are unlikely to soften in the near term, which means that sustaining profitability hinges on M&M’s ability to pass on cost pressures to its customers....
299 Tata Global Beverages eyes Paper Boat to expand product line-up TATAGLOBAL 12 Feb, 2018 Tata Global Beverages (TGBL) is believed to have approached prominent shareholders of Hector Beverages with the proposal to buy out the firm and its popular brand Paper Boat, sources told The Economic Times. "Paper Boat is one brand that they are keen on as it has already created a significant brand equity," sources told the newspaper. Despite formally approaching the firm, the talks around acquiring Paper Boat are still at an exploratory stage. There is no guarantee yet that it will lead to a transaction. Hector Beverages was founded by former Coca-Cola executives Neeraj Kakkar and Neeraj Biyani in 2010. Their brand Paper Boat sells Indian ethnic drinks such as aamras, jaljeera and aam panna. Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran is keen to expand the entity's beverages portfolio and wants the group firm to move beyond tea, coffee and water offerings and challenge PepsiCo or Nestle, sources said. Tata is looking at the dairy segment for their expansion plans. When the newspaper approached Hector, the top officials denied the information the paper received. "We are strongly committed to building a long-term, sustainable — and most importantly — an independent business... There has never been any discussion with Tata Global Beverages or anybody else for that matter regarding a strategic investment or sell-out," the Hector Beverages official told the paper....
300 Sun Pharma gains as USFDA inspection starts at Halol SUNPHARMA 12 Feb, 2018 Shares of Sun Pharma are trading up on the media reports that its Halol plant is undergoing USFDA inspection. This inspection was scheduled in this month upon the invitation by the company. This facility, in January 2018, received a clearance from a Dutch drug regulator. Halol is an important plant for Sun Pharma which holds a key for Sun Pharma’s US formulation business. Sun Pharma’s US business has been impacted in the last couple of years as ANDA approvals have been delayed due to the observations at Halol. The Halol facility received 9 observations in the re-inspection by USFDA in Q3FY17. The positive outcome of the inspection will remove the overhang on the stock. It will also be positive for Sun Pharma Advanced Research Company as it also has filed a couple of its potential new drugs applications (NDA) from this facility. Sun Pharmaceuticals Industries is currently trading at Rs602.95, up by Rs20.3 or 3.48% from its previous closing of Rs582.65 on the BSE. ...
301 CG Power Systems bags Rs 335 cr order from Indonesian firm CGPOWER 12 Feb, 2018 CG Power & Industrial Solutions Ltd today said its wholly-owned subsidiary has bagged an order worth Indonesian rupiah 744 billion (Rs 335 crore) from state utility PT PLN (Persero) for manufacturing and supply of 64 units of power transformers. "CG Power Systems Indonesia, a wholly-owned subsidiary of CG Power & Industrial Solutions Ltd, has bagged an order from Indonesian state utility PT PLN (Persero) for manufacturing and supply of 64 units of Power Transformers valued at IDR 744 billion," the company said in a BSE filing. "This project is the first of its kind to be funded by Islamic Development Bank to support PLN's ambitious goal to enhance its transmission grid performance," it added. The project will be completed by December 2018. The scope of work includes site survey, design, manufacturing, supply and installation of 64 units (4400 MVA) of power transformers in PLN regions spread from Aceh to Papua over Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Papua and Malukku Islands of Indonesia. Shares of CG Power & Industrial Solutions Ltd were trading 2.54 per cent higher at Rs 90.70 apiece on BSE....
302 Oil Hunger to Grow in Nation Aiming For Only Electric Car Sales OTHER 10 Feb, 2018 Even though India aspires to sell only electric vehicles by 2030, it still sees gasoline and diesel consumption doubling over that period. The two ideas may not be contradictory. Electric vehicles will take time to become affordable enough for price-sensitive Indian masses, according to the country’s energy forecaster. During that time, gasoline and diesel vehicles will remain the mainstay as cars and scooters sold in the next few years will stay roadworthy for at least a decade after. “The government is only aiming for 100 percent electric vehicles sales by 2030,” Suresh Sivanandam, the Singapore-based head of Asia refining research at Wood Mackenzie Ltd., said in an email. “We should still see gasoline demand growing until 2030 but the pace of the growth slows down beyond 2030.” The Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell of the country’s oil ministry estimates that both gasoline and diesel consumption in the fastest growing oil consumer will double by 2030. Wood Mackenzie too believes that gasoline demand will double by 2030, while diesel may only grow by a third to 113 million tons by 2030. In addition, while the electric vehicle goal has been spoken of by various ministers in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, it hasn’t been formulated into an official policy yet. “The government is yet to release a policy paper on electric vehicles,” Sivanandam said. “That would set the tone for how serious the government is about this ambition.” In the meantime, growing income levels are spurring more Indians to buy traditional cars and scooters. India sold more than 17.5 million scooters and motorcycles in the year ended March 31 and annual sales have grown about seven percent in three of the last four years. Car sales grew more than seven percent in the last two years. The International Energy Agency, which last May termed India’s EV plan “ambitious,” sees the country as the center of global oil demand until 2030....
303 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals recalls Mometasone Furoate Cream from US market GLENMARK 09 Feb, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has initiated a voluntary recall of 5,136 tunes of its Mometasone Furoate Cream, USP, 0.1 per cent 45gm from the US market due to violations of the CGMP (current good manufacturing practice) regulations set up by the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA). Mometasone Furoate Cream is used to treat skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, allergies, and rash. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals is a global pharmaceutical company. The company is engaged in the development of new chemical entities (NCEs) and new biological entities (NBEs). Its segments are India, United States, Latin America, Europe and Rest of the World (ROW). ...
304 Dr. Reddy’s recalls over 80,000 bottles of Atorvastatin Calcium Tablets from US market DRREDDY 09 Feb, 2018 Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories has initiated voluntary recall of over 80,000 bottles of its drug Atorvastatin Calcium Tablets 10mg, 20mg and 40mg from the US market due to quality concerns. Atorvastatin is a drug that blocks the production of cholesterol and reduces its level in the blood. The company has recalled multiple lots of Atorvastatin 10 mg, 90 count and 500 count bottles; 20 mg, 90 count and 500 count bottles and 40 mg, 90 count bottles from US market. The company has recalled the drug on account of Failed Impurities/Degradations specifications; out-of-specification results observed for Total Degradation Impurities during stability. The drug was manufactured at the drug maker’s Srikakulam plant in Andhra Pradesh. Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories is a multinational pharmaceutical company based in Hyderabad, Telangana in India. It manufactures and markets a wide range of pharmaceuticals in India and overseas. ...
305 NTPC invites bids for procuring 1,000 MT of agro residue based fuel NTPC 09 Feb, 2018 NTPC has invited bids for procuring 1,000 metric tonne (MT) of agro residue based fuel per day as part of the eco-friendly drive in the NCR. The initiative will provide farmers with an alternate to burning crop residues, a major contributor to pollution. The bids are for 2,650 MW Dadri power plant in Uttar Pradesh. The tender will be for two years with a capping price of Rs 5,500 per metric tonne for agro residue based pellets and Rs 6,600 per tonne for pellets or briquettes of torrefied agro residue. NTPC is the largest power utility company in India and has presence in Coal, Gas, Solar PV, Hydro and Wind Power Generation and Coal Mining. ...
306 JSW Steel places ?13,000-cr bid for Bhushan Power JSWSTEEL 09 Feb, 2018 JSW Steel has placed bid for ?13,000 crore to acquire the stressed asset of Bhushan Power and Steel for which the bidding closed on Thursday. The Resolution Professional was supposed to announce the winning bid at 4 p.m., but preferred to hold it back. Tata Steel is the only other contender to acquire the company. Mahender Khandelwal is the resolution professional for Bhushan Power and head of restructuring services at audit and advisory firm BDO. According to banking sources, Tata Steel has placed bid for ?11,500 crore. Interestingly, Anil Agarwal-promoted Vedanta Resources which conducted due-diligence did not submit a binding bid, sources said. The resolution professional has arrived at liquidation value of ?9,000 crore and share value of ?24,000 crore for the unlisted company. The financial placed by the two companies JSW Steel and Tata Steel will be taken up with SBI Caps the advisor for the Resolution Professional before being submitted to the lead creditor Punjab National Bank, said sources. The bids will be finally examined and approved by the committee of creditors, including SBI and 11 other banks, sources said....
307 Adani’s giant Australian coal mine takes hit as rail plan axed ADANIENT 09 Feb, 2018 The Indian conglomerate trying to build one of the world’s largest coal mines has already had its own funding bid for a rail line stymied by the Queensland state government. Now, a funding proposal for another line that could carry its coal to the coast for export has been canned. Rail operator Aurizon Holdings Ltd., which hoped to build a common-user rail link to open up the thermal coal-rich Galilee Basin, said Friday it was withdrawing its application because it hadn’t locked in any contracts with customers. The route may have solved a missing link for Adani as it works out how to move coal from its planned Carmichael mine to its Abbot Point terminal on the coast. The company is racing to find as much as A$3 billion ($2.3 billion) in debt financing to kickstart the mine project by a March deadline. ...
308 JBM Auto unveils Eco-Life electric bus at Auto Expo 2018 JBMA 08 Feb, 2018 JBM Auto has reportedly unveiled its Eco-Life electric bus at the Auto Expo 2018 in Greater Noida. The maximum speed of the bus is 75 kmph. The seating capacity of the bus ranges between 36-40. The eco-friendly bus will cost between Rs 2 crore to Rs 3 crore depending on the customizations. JBM Auto is an automotive company that manufactures auto systems and city buses. The company manufactures sheet metal components for automobiles, and tools and dies for automobiles. ...
309 Lupin’s JVcompletes global trials for biosimilar Etanercept LUPIN 08 Feb, 2018 Drugmaker Lupin and Yoshindo’s joint venture YL Biologics has said that its late phase clinical studies on a biosimilar version of Etanercept (YLB113) has met with a successful outcome. The global Phase III study of YLB113 was a multinational randomised double-blind controlled trial of 52 weeks on more than 500 patients with rheumatoid arthritis in 11 countries, Lupin said on Wednesday. The study compared YLB113's efficacy and safety directly against Enbrel, the branded version of the biological drug from innovator Amgen which has an estimated $11-billion market. Biological drugs are made from living organisms and the difficulty with biosimilars is that they are not exactly identical like a chemically generic version of an allopathic drug. And this makes the trials on the biosimilar important to establish safety and efficacy. Phase III trials are studies that come at a more advanced stage in the development of the drug. And like generic drugs, biosimilars are priced less expensive than the originator's drug. The study was conducted at 110 rheumatology clinics across Japan, Europe and India and included 260 Japanese patients from 62 rheumatology clinics, a scale distinct for a global RA trial in Japan, the company said. The safety of the biosimilar was found to be similar to the original product, the company said. "We are excited by the positive results from the Phase III trial. This helps us put together a robust regulatory dossier intended for global regulatory filings for YLB113,” Lupin Managing Director Nilesh Gupta, said in a statement. “We currently have multiple high value-biosimilar candidates in our late-stage global development pipeline. We remain committed to advancing our biotech R&D capabilities so that more patients across the world can access affordable, high-quality biosimilars," Nilesh said. On Tuesday, at an interaction over the company’s financial performance, Lupin Chief Executive Vinita Gupta reiterated that biosimilars and speciality products were integral to its growth strategy. Toshihiko Hibino, YLB President, said, "We believe that it is our joint responsibility with our parent companies to subsidise the cost of RA treatment by offering a clinically equivalent biosimilar Etanercept to the Japanese patients." YLB is in the process of compiling a regulatory dossier for submission to Japanese regulator PMDA for its marketing authorisation....
310 JSW Steel bids ?29,700 cr for Bhushan Steel JSWSTEEL 08 Feb, 2018 JSW Steel has placed a ?29,700-crore bid for acquiring the stressed asset of Bhushan Steel and has agreed to pay ?28,000 crore upfront and the rest in equity, according to sources in the banking sector. The company is believed to have bid aggressively after the committee of creditors decided to negotiate only with the highest bidder. Tata Steel is believed to have bid about ?24,000 crore for Bhushan Steel, which has a steel-making capacity of 5.6 million tonnes and owes banks ?44,478 crore. However, the resolution professional has not opened the bids by both the companies. Meanwhile, global metal major ArcelorMittal is speeding up the sale of its stake in bankrupt Uttam Galva Steel to make it eligible to bid for Bhushan Steel. Currently, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code does not allow promoters of defaulting companies to bid for a stressed asset. But now that the bids placed by most of the contenders for Bhushan Steel are in the public domain, a merchant banker wondered whether banks can accept ArcelorMittal’s bid. The deadline for bidding ends at 2 pm on Thursday and the winning bid will be announced at 4 pm. Some of the other bidders include Vedantaand AION Capital....
311 Sun Pharma’s subsidiary Taro reports weak earnings SUNPHARMA 08 Feb, 2018 Net sales for Sun Pharma’s subsidiary Taro declined 29% to $155.5mn, while volumes surged. An increase in competition and pricing pressure led to decline in the net sales. Gross profit declined by 38% yoy to $102.9mn vs $167.3mn in December 2016 quarter. Gross margin declined by ~970bps to 66.2% in December 2017 quarter vs 75.9% in December 2016 quarter. Operating profit declined by 52.1% yoy to $61.7mn. Operating profit margin was at 39.7% in the quarter vs 58.5% in December 2016 quarter. Net profit declined by 87% yoy to $17.9mn. Taro has received four ANDA approvals from the USFDA and has a total of 30 ANDAs awaiting FDA approvals. Sun Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd is currently trading at Rs558.5, up by Rs9.8 or 1.79% from its previous closing of Rs548.7 on the BSE. Sun Pharma’s US formulations and Indian-branded Generics contributed 45% and 26%, respectively to FY17 revenue, while Emerging markets, ROW and API contributed 15%, 9% and 5%, respectively. It has a strong pipeline for the US market with 136 ANDAs and 4 NDAs awaiting approval....
312 Indian State With Most Cars Plans Electric Vehicle Push OTHER 08 Feb, 2018 Maharashtra, home to the highest number of vehicles in India, plans to offer tax cuts and subsidies to promote electric cars. The state is looking to draw investments under its ‘Maharashtra Electric Vehicle Policy-2018’ to support manufacturing of around five lakh battery-powered vehicles in five years, according to the plan cleared by the Cabinet. That would help generate one lakh jobs, it said. The first leg will cover six cities: Mumbai, Thane, Pune, Nashik, Aurangabad, and Nagpur. India aims to turn all vehicles electric by 2030 to cut reliance on fossil fuels to reduce emissions and lower imports. Maharashtra accounts for over 12 percent of more than 21 crore vehicles in India as of March 2015, according to data by the Ministry of Statistical and Programme Implementation. Transition to cleaner electric vehicles will require investments to set up manufacturing capacities and infrastructure, besides more power to meet demand for electricity to charge batteries. Even the laws need to be changed. Private entities can’t set up charging stations as the Electricity Act allows only distribution companies to sell power. A bill to change the law is expected to come up in the ongoing budget session of Parliament. Almost all automakers that unveiled concept models of their electric vehicles on the first day of the Delhi Auto Expo said the government needs to frame a comprehensive policy to boost the infrastructure for electric vehicles. A few states have taken the lead....
313 Ashok Leyland to invest around Rs 100 crore in EV technology: Report ASHOKLEY 07 Feb, 2018 Ashok Leyland is reportedly planning to invest around Rs 100 crore in the electric vehicle (EV) technology over the next two-three years. The company is also planning to showcase the prototype of its first EV product at the upcoming Auto Expo 2018, scheduled to start this week in New Delhi. The company’s total planned capital expenditure for the 2018-19 financial year, including the expense of expanding its cabin facility, debottlenecking and investment in technologies, would be Rs 500-700 crore. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
314 Tata Steel eyes Rs 1,000 cr turnover from home segment TATASTEEL 07 Feb, 2018 Tata Steel is eyeing Rs 1,000 crore turnover from sale of household solutions in the next three years. Growth will be primarily driven by branded doors ‘Pravesh’ - steel door with a wooden finish, according to the company. Apart from doors, the company has also introduced steel windows in select markets and customised wardrobes (on a pilot basis) targeting solutions for the home-segment. According to Peeyush Gupta, VP – Steel (Marketing & Sales), ‘Pravesh’, which was launched in 2014 to provide value-added steel solutions to individual house builders in semi-urban and rural markets, is likely to clock sales turnover of Rs 200 crore by the end of this fiscal. The door business is estimated to be worth Rs 50,000 crore per annum and is dominated largely by local carpenters and vendors. The Pravesh doors, which are made from all weather-proof steel and claims to be break-free, termite-free and fire resistant, are priced in the range of Rs 22,000-26,000 a piece depending on the specifications and level of customisation. “We are selling close to 15,000 doors a month; the potential is huge. Pravesh will turn out to be one of the largest contributors to the company’s branded product basket soon,” Gupta told the media on the sidelines of a company event. Apart from dealer networks, the company is also looking to offer its solutions through high end property developers. “There are some high end developers particularly in cities like Nagpur, Trivandrum, Gujarat etc who are looking for our door solutions,” he said. Tata Steel’s branded product basket, which comprises of Tata Tiscon – rebars for the urban market, Tata Shaktee - roofing sheets for rural homes and Tata Astrum, a hot rolled product catering to the SME segment, together account for Rs 15,000 crore turnover. “Branded steel sale for SME at around Rs 8,000-8,500 crore is the biggest contributor to the segment; followed by Tiscon at Rs 5,500 crore and Tata Shaktee at Rs 2,500 crore,” he said. New offering Plans are afoot to launch steel entrance gates and grills to complete the bouquet of offerings for the home segment. According to Gupta, the steel gates and grills would be completely customised and ‘unique’ making it difficult to be duplicated. “Steel gates and grills is one segment where it is important to get the product right; we have not launched yet but are looking at it,” he said....
315 HDFC could move to acquire controlling stake in CanFin Homes HDFCBANK 07 Feb, 2018 HDFC is exploring the purchase of controlling stake in CanFin Homes (30% stake of parent Canara Bank) as per Media reports. HDFC which is raising Rs13,000cr, may use part of this money to fund this stake buying. If the acquisition goes through then it will be positive for CanFin Homes as it would be part of HDFC group. Shares of Can Fin Homes share is trading higher at Rs473/share (up 3.3%) and Canara Bank share is trading higher at Rs327/share (up 2.57%). The divestment would act positive for the Canara bank as it would aid it to improve its capital adequacy ratio, which in turn would partly fund its future loan growth. Canara Bank’s improving asset quality, better NIM prospects and rising noninterest income bodes well for its profitability over FY17-19E. The bank is trading at ~2.1x FY19E P/ABV. We have positive outlook on the stock. Can Fin Homes Ltd is a South-based (74% of business) housing finance company with Canara Bank holding 30% stake. We expect strong growth in affordable housing loan segment and high yielding non-core segments. Additionally, favorable funding mix and the lower cost-to-income ratio will trigger earnings growth. The stock is trading at 3.7x FY19E P/BV. We have positive outlook on the stock....
316 Supreme Court Cancels All Iron Ore Mining Leases In Goa OTHER 07 Feb, 2018 The Supreme Court today quashed all the 88 iron ore mining leases renewed by the Goa government. A bench headed by Justice Madan Lokur ordered that no mining activity in the state will continue after March 15. The top court also ordered that the Goa government will have to grant the leases afresh. The Supreme Court judgement comes on a plea filed by non-government organisation Goa Foundation represented by lawyer Prashant Bhushan. The petitioners had alleged that mining undertaken through these leases was illegal. In October 2012, the apex court suspended all iron ore mining and transportation in the state, following a report submitted by the Justice MB Shah Commission, which found that millions of tonnes of iron ore was mined illegally. In 2015, the state government renewed 88 mining leases owned by the same holders accused of illegal mining....
317 Ambani's First Jio Profit Is `Too Good to Believe' for Bernstein RELIANCE 07 Feb, 2018 Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd.’s first-ever net income is “a bit too good to believe” for Sanford C. Bernstein analysts, who examined how the phone carrier accounts for some costs. Jio’s “unique approach” results in a slower pace of recognizing depreciation and amortization, which led to a 12 billion rupee ($187 million) charge in the December quarter, according to a Feb. 2 Bernstein report. Using a rate similar to local rivals would have quadrupled that number and turned Jio’s reported profit into a loss of 24.1 billion rupees, analysts led by Hong Kong-based Chris Lane estimated. The carrier, controlled by India’s richest man and a unit of Reliance Industries Ltd., posted a net income of 5.04 billion rupees last quarter, about 16 months after its debut sparked an industry price war that crashed revenues. The result was boosted by Jio’s policy, linking depreciation charges to “its own assessment” of usage and economic benefit, while other Indian carriers amortize telecom assets at a fixed rate over time, Morgan Stanley said in a Jan. 21 report. An email seeking comment from Jio’s spokesman went unanswered. “It’s part of accounts engineering. The assets will depreciate over time whether you use them or not, whether you use them partially or fully,” said Anil Singhvi, founder of Ican Investment Advisors Pvt Ltd. This approach is “just a way of saying I’m profitable sooner,” he said by phone, adding that the focus should instead be on cash flows. Billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s telecom unit launched with free services in 2016 and went paid 10 months ago. Morgan Stanley estimates Jio will turn cash-flow positive in the 12 months through March 2020....
318 Brigade Enterprises features amongst top 3 choices of homebuyers across South India BRIGADE 06 Feb, 2018 Brigade Enterprises has been featured amongst the top 3 choices of homebuyers across South India. In the latest Track2Realty’s Consumer Confidence Report 20:20, a comprehensive study on consumer experiences and overall psychology about the Indian real estate market, Brigade beat well-known rivals to clinch the 3rd rank in South India. This latest Consumer Confidence Report 20:20 (20 realty players across 20 cities) is based on pan-India evaluation of 500 developers. Besides, out of the total 500 developers nationally that were shortlisted for evaluation, buyers across the country dismissed as many as 412 developers as totally unreliable and worth avoiding. Only 88 developers were voted with some level of trust. Out of these, only seven developers could earn ‘Positive Outlook’ at the national level. Significantly, Brigade stood an impressive 6th at a national level, out of an overall of 500 developers that were shortlisted for evaluation. Brigade Enterprises is a property development company. The company focuses on residential, offices, retail and hospitality projects. The company operates through three segments -- Real Estate segment, Hospitality segment and Leasing segment. ...
319 Singtel To Increase Stake In Bharti Airtel By 1% BHARTIARTL 06 Feb, 2018 Singapore Telecommunications Ltd. will be buying an additional 1.7 percent stake in Bharti Telecom Ltd., promoter company of Bharti Airtel Ltd., for Rs 2,649 crore. Bharti Telecom will be issuing 8.54 crore equity shares to Singtel at Rs 310 each on preferential basis. Post the fund infusion by Singapore Telecom or Singtel, its ownership will increase to 48.9 percent in Bharti Telecom. This will indirectly increase Singtel’s stake in Bharti Airtel. Through this allotment, Singtel’s economic interest in Airtel will increase by 0.9 percentage point to 39.5 percent. Singtel’s disclosure to Singapore Exchange Bharti Telecom owns nearly 50.1 percent stake in India’s largest telecom operator. The funds raised will be used by Bharti Telecom to reduce its debt. Singtel’s current fund infusion values Bharti Telecom at Rs 1,55,821 crore, while its stake 50.1 percent stake in listed Bharti Airtel is valued at Rs 84,474 crore. Bharti Enterprises, the Sunil Bharti Mittal-owned company, owns more than 50 percent stake in Bharti Telecom. This will be Singtel’s second investment in Bharti Telecom in less than two years. Earlier in 2016, it had participated in a rights issue of Rs 2,500 crore. The fresh round of investment highlights the confidence of Singtel in Airtel, and the increased attractiveness of the Indian telecoms sector following the recent consolidation, Bharti Airtel said in a release. Shares of the country’s largest telecom company rose as much as 5 percent, the most in nearly a month, to Rs 443 on the NSE in early trading....
320 M&M introduces mHAWK engine on its compact SUV ‘TUV300’ M&M 06 Feb, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) has introduced higher powered mHAWK engine on the entry level and mid variants of its compact SUV TUV300. The mHAWK engine with 100 BHP (brake horse power) will be available on T4+ and T6+ variants of TUV300 with immediate effect. The TUV300 T4+ variant with mHAWK100 engine will be priced at Rs 8.02 lakh, while the same for TUV300 T6+ variant will be priced at Rs 8.59 lakh (ex-showroom Mumbai). M&M is the flagship company of the Mahindra Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. Amongst the various business interests of its parent group, the company is mainly involved in the automobile manufacturing. It is one of the leading auto companies of India. ...
321 TVS Motor unveils 125cc scooter NTORQ at Rs 58,750 TVSMOTOR 06 Feb, 2018 Expanding it’s product portfolio, two and three wheeler manufacturer TVS Motor today forayed into the 125cc scooter segment, with the launch of NTORQ, here, priced at Rs 58,750 ex-showroom New Delhi. The new scooter joins the company’s other products including popular scooterette Scooty Pep, scooterTVS Jupiter, We Go. According to company officials, the overall scooter category in domestic market was growing at 17.4 per cent CAGR over the last six years. “I am happy to launch the latest offering (from TVS Motor) for the young audience 18-24years..”, TVS Motor President and CEO, K N Radhakrishnan told reporters here. Stating that the product was positioned for young customers, he said, the vehicle ‘will be available all India in a week’s time.’ To a question, he said, the company was expecting to sell more than two lakh units in the first year of launch. He replied in the affirmative that the product would also be shipped to overseas markets besides catering to domestic market. He said the company was holding 17 per cent market share in the scooter segment and was “growing” more than the industry....
322 Steel workers approve Thyssenkrupp-Tata Steel labour deal TATASTEEL 06 Feb, 2018 Steel workers at Thyssenkrupp have voted in favour of a labour agreement that will safeguard jobs and plants in a planned joint venture with Tata Steel, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters on Monday. About 20,500 members of German union IG Metall had been asked to vote on the agreement, which was struck just before Christmas and foresees no forced layoffs or major site closures until 30 September, 2026. Thyssenkrupp and Tata Steel in September unveiled plans to merge their European steel operations and forge Europe’s second-largest steel group after ArcelorMittal, which has led to fears over significant job cuts. They said the deal will help them to tackle overcapacity in Europe’s steel market, which faces cheap imports, subdued construction demand and inefficient legacy plants. The companies have already announced 4,000 job cuts as part of the tie-up. Although not essential to the creation of the planned joint venture, workers’ approval to the labour agreement is seen as key to getting the deal done and shows Thyssenkrupp’s commitment to seek workers’ consent for far-reaching structural changes. The joint venture still needs to be approved by Thyssenkrupp’s supervisory board and chairman Ulrich Lehner could in theory use his casting vote to get the deal through should all labour representatives be against it....
323 Domestic business buoys Tata Motors while JLR hits roadblocks TATAMOTORS 06 Feb, 2018 Going by Tata Motors Ltd’s December quarter performance that missed profit estimates by a wide margin, the road ahead is likely to be a rough one. The main worry is due to the disappointing performance of its cash-cow Jaguar Land Rover Ltd (JLR) that has been churning out healthy profits for several years and which churned out 90% to 100% of the consolidated profits. For the quarter, Tata Motors’ consolidated net profit of Rs 1,212 crore missed Bloomberg’s 15-broker average estimate by a huge 48%. More importantly, its operating profit, although higher than the year-ago period, was also just three-fourths of what the Street had forecast. All this, in spite of a 16% jump in consolidated net revenue on the back of strong sales volumes, especially on the home ground. What this clearly shows is that the costs during the quarter overtook realizations. The glaring miss is JLR’s operating margin of 10.9% against estimates of 11.5%. In fact, fiscal year 2018 has been a challenging one so far, with operating margins in the first and second quarters at 7.9% and 11.8%, respectively, coming lower than forecasts. While the management attributes the sales slowdown to the changeover of some Range Rover models and introduction of new ones, there are other concerns too. Barring China, where sales grew by 14% year-on-year during the quarter, markets in the UK, Europe and North America have been challenging. The investor presentation clearly indicates that the changing trends towards fewer diesel vehicles in Europe and the UK and the trend towards electric vehicles in North America have led to a steep drop in sales in these regions (see chart). Even growth in China has simmered down compared to a few quarters ago. Reiterating this, the management in the conference call said that the cost of responding to higher competition and product changes led to higher variable costs. Along with adverse currency movements, this weighed on profitability. The worry is that the market product cycle uncertainty could see a trend reversal in JLR’s performance, at least in the near term. One can anticipate higher product development costs and depreciation costs with a strain on working capital too for some time ahead, signalling negative free cash flows. Fortunately, the downturn in JLR was partially offset by a recovery in Tata Motors’ stand-alone business, as sales of domestic commercial vehicles shot through the roof (see chart) and passenger cars too recovered. Indeed, the company’s turnaround strategy was followed by a recovery in the domestic commercial vehicle market as a whole. Robust sales aided the transition from a loss in the year-ago period to a profit this quarter. However, the stand-alone profit hardly matters except that it prevents a further drain on cash flows. Without doubt, JLR’s poor performance will eclipse the uptrend in domestic business. This is already mirrored in Tata Motors’ stock price that has fallen 24% in a year, while shares of its competitor on the home turf—Ashok Leyland Ltd—have risen by 37%. Tata Motors’ shares have hugely underperformed even the benchmark indices in FY18 so far and are unlikely to see better days until JLR is on a firm footing once again....
324 Maruti Suzuki receives over 30,000 bookings for the new Swift MARUTI 05 Feb, 2018 S Ronendra Singh Maruti Suzuki India (MISL) said that it has received more than 30,000 bookings for its all-new generation Swift to be launched on February 8 at the Auto Expo. But, the company also hinted that price of the third generation may not be as consumer-friendly as the previous two generations and is expected to be much higher. The outgoing Swift had a price tag of ?5.23 lakh as a starting price. The company had started the bookings last month with a booking amount of ?11,000. “We have received around 30,000 bookings till now, but will see the real numbers when we announce the price. As we have not announced the price we can’t have a say on number of bookings as some people might cancel the bookings after the real prices are announced,” Kenichi Ayukawa, MD & CEO, MSIL, told BusinessLine. He said Swift is a very important product for Maruti as after the launch of Swift in 2005, everything changed in the product portfolio of MSIL. For the latest one also, the focus right now is more into it than other products. “We are focusing the production in Gujarat plant right now and have shifted the production of Baleno to Manesar because demand for Swift will be more and the Gujarat plant has a capacity of 2.5 lakh a year right now. Baleno also has a back log of 30,000 units right now, so we will have flexibility of producing it at Gujarat too. But, more than 90 per cent of the Baleno production is happening in Manesar right now,” Ayukawa said. Meanwhile, speaking about the current scenario of the electric vehicles (EVs), he said instead of electric cars, the government should promote hybrid cars in the run up to the 2030 plan. “If we have to shift manufacturing to EV, we have to shift localisation in many other things too. That is why we are proposing hybrid system right now so that internal combustion engine (ICE) cars are not scrapped right away,” he said. Hybrid system Looking at the environment also, hybrid system is better before we leapfrog into EV directly because hybrid system will still have an engine along with the motor and the battery. “Even of 5-10 per cent improvement by them will be a lot of contribution on fuel consumption and saving energy of the country right now,” he said. The company that is planning to manufacture the EVs in the Gujarat plant, is right now doing feasibility studies on how much localisation can happen and then see some technical arrangements. He said for launching an electric car, it would mean availability of charging points from day one of the purchase of the product. Also, one cannot think of exchange of the battery so easily of an EV for replacing with a charged one because it is too heavy (around 250 kg each) unlike the batteries of e-rickshaws....
325 RIL to invest Rs 2,500 crore in Assam in various sectors RELIANCE 05 Feb, 2018 Reliance Industries (RIL) is planning to invest Rs 2,500 crore in Assam in various sectors, including retail, petroleum, telecom, tourism and sports, creating jobs for at least 80,000 people over the next three years. Under this programme, the company will enhance its retail division’s outlet to 40 from existing two, while the number of petrol depots will be increased to 165 from the existing 27. Reliance Industries is India’s largest private sector company. The company’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
326 IOC planning to invest Rs 3,400 crore in Assam to expand operations IOC 05 Feb, 2018 Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) is planning to invest Rs 3,400 crore in Assam over the next five years to expand its operations by setting up new units as well as upgrading the existing ones. The company will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Assam Government to this effect at the two-day Advantage Assam - Global Investors Summit 2018. The company’s Board has already approved the funding and it may increase in future depending upon the progress of the work. IOC is the largest enterprise in the country and the foremost ranked Fortune Global 500 Company in India and has presence in the complete hydrocarbon value chain from downstream refining & marketing, pipeline transportation, Petrochemicals, E&P and Gas Marketing ...
327 GVK Power inks pact with Punjab Power utility for Goindwal Sahib project GVKPIL 05 Feb, 2018 GVK Power & Infrastructure Ltd has signed a supplementary power purchase agreement with Punjab State Power Corporation Ltd, for its power project located at Tarn Taran in Punjab. This will pave way for power generation at the 2x270 MW thermal power plant situated in Goindwal Sahib district of Punjab and also boost cash flows for the company. The agreement comes in the backdrop of GVK Power (Goindwal Sahib) Ltd, a subsidiary of GVK Power, receiving a letter of award for long-term coal linkage for the power plant, which was earlier stranded due to lack of fuel. In fact, coal allocation made to the company for the project from the Tokisud mine was cancelled by the Government after the apex court order cancelling all coal block allocation. The company had received approval from Coal India Ltd, declaring it as the provisional successful bidder for the award of coal from CCL (G11) and Korea Rewa under the Shakti Scheme, 2017 of the Central Government....
328 Singtel to invest Rs 2,649 crore in Bharti Telecom BHARTIARTL 05 Feb, 2018 Singapore Telecommunications (Singtel), Asia’s leading communications and ICT solutions group and a long term partner of Bharti Airtel, will invest Rs 2,649 crore in Bharti Telecom, the promoter company of Bharti Airtel through preferential allotment of shares. The transaction is subject to the shareholders’ approval of Bharti Telecom. The funds raised will be used towards debt reduction. With this investment, Singtel’s total stake (along with its affiliates) in Bharti Telecom will increase to 48.90%. Singtel currently holds 47.17% stake in Bharti Telecom. Bharti Enterprises continues to hold over 50% stake in Bharti Telecom. The fresh round of investment highlights the confidence of Singtel in Airtel, and the increased attractiveness of the Indian telecoms sector following the recent consolidation. The investment comes within 23 months of Singtel’s participation in Bharti Telecom’s Right Issue of Rs 2,500 crore, which was completed in February 2016. Bharti Airtel is a leading global telecommunications company with operations in 16 countries across Asia and Africa ...
329 Mahindra wins an order to supply 1000 e-Veritos to Bhagirathi M&M 05 Feb, 2018 Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd on Saturday won an order to supply 1,000 electric vehicles (EVs) to Bengaluru-based fleet operator Baghirathi Travel Solutions Pvt. Ltd through its subsidiary Mahindra Electric Mobility Ltd, Mahesh Babu, CEO of Mahindra Electric said, describing the order as “one of the biggest in Indian corporate mobility”. The order value exceeds Rs100 crore and is Mahindra’s largest EV order so far, eclipsing the Rs16 crore the company stands to earn revenues from the first phase of the central government tender floated through state-owned Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) in September. The second phase has not been announced yet. Founded in 2003, Baghirathi owns and operates a fleet of 2,000 vehicles in Bengaluru, primarily catering to companies, in addition to schools and inter-city demand. As India’s only commercial EV manufacturer, Mahindra has espoused the deployment of EVs with fleet owners, taxi aggregators and car rental companies because their business models necessitate running longer distances per day, which enhances the commercial viability of an EV. So far, the maker of the Scorpio has sold its EVs to Bengaluru-based electric cab company Lithium Urban Technologies Pvt. Ltd, car rental company Zoomcar and cab aggregators Uber Technologies Inc. and Ola (ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd), in addition to starting a pilot project with Baghirathi in June 2017. The model to be supplied is the electric sedan e-Verito, with its range extended by close to 30% up to 140km, said Mahesh Babu, chief executive at Mahindra Electric. The range is the distance an EV can run on a single charge. Deliveries to Baghirathi will begin in batches of 100 units per month from mid-February. The range of the e-Verito supplied to EESL was lower at 110km, therefore a premium has been charged on the upgraded model, Babu said on the question of pricing, without disclosing further details. Mahindra did not make any money at the price point of Rs10.6 lakh quoted in the EESL order, said Mahindra and Mahindra managing director Pawan Goenka in early October. Therefore, a back-of-the-envelope calculation would make the Baghirathi order more profitable for Mahindra. Analysts expect greater uptake of EVs by fleet owners owing to a relative ease in operation as compared to private owners. “As commercial players deal with larger EV volume, they can develop their own charging stations. Therefore, easier and more commercially viable operations would increase uptake. At this point, the public sector is also aiding the development of charging infrastructure”, said Abdul Majeed, partner at consulting firm PwC India. A case in point, Baghirathi itself desires to replace its entire fleet with EVs in the next three to five years as charging infrastructure allows, beginning with a 20% conversion in fiscal 2019, said Mahesh Hariharan, managing director at Baghirathi. However, it remains to be seen whether an underdeveloped charging station network will play spoilsport to greater EV adoption. “The biggest operational challenge during the 10 months of the pilot project was the charging infrastructure,” said Hariharan. At present, 15 charging points are being placed at “strategic locations” to cater to the first batch of EVs, said Hariharan, without disclosing the entity setting up the infrastructure, while adding that “the Karnataka government is looking into it and working out the modalities”....
330 Tata Steel to increase capacity at Port Talbot TATASTEEL 03 Feb, 2018 Tata Steel is to raise capacity at its Port Talbot site in South Wales by 5 per cent as it announced new investment targeted at its increasing focus on high-value added steel produce. The company has invested £14 million into a transfer cooling bar system, which will increase efficiency at the Hot Strip Mill at Port Talbot and raise capacity by over 150,000 tonnes per year, the company said on Friday. The investment comes after a £30-million investment in November into the site, which together would create a “stronger, more efficient and more reliable platform”. “We took the opportunity of a planned maintenance shutdown to upgrade several plant areas to further improve production of high-value steels and their delivery to customers,” said Jon Ferriman, Tata Steel’s Director of strip products UK. Merger plans Once the focus of concern about its future, the fortunes of Port Talbot have strengthened as Tata Steel moves forward with plans to merge its European assets with those of German steel maker ThyssenKrupp. The prospects for the merger were enhanced by the deal struck with the UK authorities that enable Tata Steel to offload its pension liabilities – a move which it said was key to the creation of a sustainable future. Alongside restructuring initiatives – to refocus on higher value added produce – the industry has also benefited by an improvement in global prices and demand and the widening of anti-dumping measures from the European Union across product categories....
331 GAIL places order for Rs 440-cr Urja Ganga pipeline contract GAIL 03 Feb, 2018 GAIL (India) Ltd has placed an order for ? 440 crore for the laying of 350 kilometre of pipeline from Vijaipur (Madhya Pradesh) to Auraiya (Uttar Pradesh). A company statement said that this is a part of the spurline of 665 km from Vijaipur to Phulpur (in Uttar Pradesh) to the existing upgradation pipeline system. The pipeline laying contract for a 315 km stretch from Auraiya to Phulpur was earlier awarded during November 2016. The Vijaipur to Phulpur pipeline will provide the gas feed to the ongoing 2,655-km long Jagdispur-Haldia-Bokaro-Dhamra pipeline (JHBDPL) project of GAIL, also known as the ‘Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga’ project. The Chairman and Managing Director of GAIL (India), B C Tripathi, said, “GAIL has awarded contracts worth Rs 5,400 crore in the current fiscal year which include Rs 3,500 crore for procurement of pipeline and Rs 1,900 crore for laying of pipes.” “GAIL has awarded contracts worth Rs 7,500 crore till date for ongoing pipeline projects of around 4,000 km in south and eastern India. The two major ongoing projects that is, Kochi-Kottanad-Mangalore project in Kerala and Karnataka state and JGBDPL projects are progressing well,” he added. Tripathi further added that all of GAIL’s Group companies have made detailed plans for the expansion of city gas infrastructure in coming years. He said: “The boards of respective companies have approved a capital expenditure of Rs 3,500 crore for financial year 2018-2019. The outlay will be increased after PNGRB’s IX & X bidding round for 142 new cities.”...
332 RMC Switchgears bags order worth Rs 20.21 crore from PGVCL RMC 03 Feb, 2018 RMC Switchgears has been awarded a fresh order by Paschim Gujarat Vij Co. (PGVCL) for supply and installation of FRP fencing amounting to Rs 20.21 crore. The execution of this order will commence from March 1, 2018 and will be completed within 7 months. With this new order, the total unexecuted order book of the company as on today stands at Rs 148.08 crore. RMC Switchgears is an ISO 9001:2008 certified company primarily engaged in the business of designing and manufacturing of, Enclosures of Energy Meters, LT/HT Distribution Boxes and Panels, Junction Boxes, Feeder Pillars and other Power Distribution etc. ...
333 L&T’s construction arm bags orders worth Rs 2,275 crore LT 02 Feb, 2018 Larsen & Toubro’s (L&T) construction arm -- L&T Construction -- has bagged orders worth Rs 2,275 crore across various business segments. The Water & Effluent Treatment Business has bagged orders worth Rs 1,255 crore. An EPC order has been secured from Bangalore Development Authority for executing Utility Development and Management for Nadaprabhu Kempegowda Layout on a Design, Build & Operate (DBO) basis for Package -1. Another EPC order has been secured from the Madhya Pradesh Jal Nigam Maryadit (MPJNM), Government of Madhya Pradesh, for providing water to the Seoni and Chappara Blocks of Seoni District. The Power Transmission & Distribution Business has bagged major solar EPC orders worth Rs 590 crore. The NLC India (formerly Neyveli Lignite Corporation) has awarded an order for setting up of a 100 MW (AC) grid interactive solar photovoltaic power project in Tamil Nadu. The business has secured another order from SB Energy One of SoftBank Group, for building a 100MW (AC) solar photovoltaic power plant at Bhadla Phase III Solar Park in Rajasthan. The Buildings & Factories Business has won an order worth Rs 430 crore. A repeat order has been received from a prestigious client for the construction of a residential project in Oman. The scope includes structure, architectural finishes, MEP services and external development. Larsen & Toubro (L&T) is a major technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services conglomerate, with global operations. ...
334 Lupin launches generic Clobex Lotion in US LUPIN 02 Feb, 2018 Lupin has launched Clobetasol Propionate Lotion 0.05% having received an approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) earlier. Clobetasol Propionate Lotion 0.05% had annual sales of around $12.6 million in the US (IQVIA MAT December 2017). Lupin’s Clobetasol Propionate Lotion 0.05% is the generic equivalent of Galderma Labs’ Clobex lotion. It is indicated for the relief of the inflammatory and pruritic manifestations of corticosteroid responsive dermatoses, in patients 18 years of age or older. Lupin is an innovation led transnational pharmaceutical company developing and delivering a wide range of branded & generic formulations, biotechnology products and APIs globally. The Company is a significant player in the Cardiovascular, Diabetology, Asthma, Pediatric, CNS, GI, Anti-Infective and NSAID space and holds global leadership position in the Anti-TB segment. ...
335 NMDC fixes prices of iron ore NMDC 02 Feb, 2018 NMDC has fixed the prices of iron ore with effect from February 1, 2018. The prices of Lump Ore have been fixed at Rs 3,100 per ton, while the prices of Fines have been fixed at Rs 2,760 per ton. The above FOR prices are excluding Royalty, DMF, NMET, Cess, Forest Permit Fee and other taxes. NMDC is a state-controlled mineral producer of the Government of India. It is fully owned by the Government of India and is under administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. ...
336 Dabur India lays Patanjali threat to rest, for now DABUR 01 Feb, 2018 Dabur India Ltd joined the legion of packaged consumer goods firms reporting eye-watering growth rates, helped by a low base and the return of a more normal market situation after the roll-out of the goods and services tax (GST). While Dabur’s profitability rose substantially, it may be tested by the company holding on to sticker prices in the next few quarters, even as costs increase. In categories such as foods, where sales growth is flagging, the company may settle for lower margins to get higher growth. Dabur’s domestic sales (adjusted for GST’s accounting effects) rose by 17.7% from a year ago, while volumes grew by 13% and would have been higher but for flat growth in its foods business. Its international business saw sales increase by 5% on a constant currency basis, pulling down overall adjusted constant currency sales growth to 12.9%. The highlight of Dabur’s results was its home and personal care business, which grew by 22.9% led by growth in segments such as oral care, hair oils, shampoos and home care. In the healthcare segment, which includes health supplements such as chyawanprash and honey, sales rose by 16.6%. Dabur seems to have responded well to the challenge from Patanjali Ayurved Ltd in some of its main products such as oral care and honey. Even in the September quarter, sales growth was relatively healthy. The fading away of this threat, for now, should come as a relief to investors. In foods, there were some one-off effects such as a high growth in the base quarter a year ago and an earlier Diwali, which saw gifting sales shift to the second quarter. Competition too is playing a role, however. The company’s management said it will sacrifice some margins if need be in this category, to revive sales growth. Contrary to what other firms have been saying, Dabur’s management said that demand has slowed down in the current fiscal year and it is looking forward to the government’s measures in the budget to boost rural demand. If Dabur’s sales growth still looks cheery, it attributes that to its own efforts and indicates it has taken share from its competitors or by improving availability of its products. Till demand growth revives, that will remain its primary source of sales growth. The company’s margins widened by 180 basis points from a year ago, after adjusting for GST. This can last for a quarter or so, as it still has inventories of materials bought when prices were cheaper. But inputs such as crude oil-based derivatives and coconut oil have become expensive. Eventually, these will see costs rise. If demand remains weak, Dabur may prefer to absorb some of those increases so that volume growth remains robust. Also, the government’s frowning upon price increases during the initial quarters of GST may see it restrain itself from hiking prices. These margins, therefore, should not be taken for granted. The international business performance is a bit disappointing, as it is for most consumer goods firms that ventured overseas. Dabur expects this to improve from the fourth quarter, as underlying conditions in the countries it is present in are improving. Translation losses due to currency fluctuations are expected to be lower as well, which affects reported growth. Dabur appears to be in a good place and that explains why its shares have done well in recent quarters. They are trading at 39 times the projected earnings per share for FY19, based on the mean of analyst estimates compiled by Reuters. What could lend this relatively high valuation more support is if consumer demand steps up even by a bit while the main risk is from input cost inflation rising higher than expected....
337 RIL’s telecom arm denies launch of JioCoin App RELIANCE 01 Feb, 2018 Reliance Industries’ (RIL) telecom arm - Reliance Jio Infocomm (Jio) has denied the launch of JioCoin App. Jio has come across reports in media and other websites about the existence of purported JioCoin Apps on the Internet that are soliciting investments in crypto currencies from people. The company informed the public and media that there are no such apps offered by the company or its affiliates / associates. Any such apps using the JioCoin name are fake and people are advised to refrain from dealing with any of them. RIL is India’s largest private sector company. The company’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
338 Plastiblends India to raise funds up to Rs 100 crore PLASTIBLEN 01 Feb, 2018 Plastiblends India has received an approval to raise funds not exceeding Rs 100 crore by way of QIP/GDR/ADR/FCCB/other securities linked to equity / preference shares / any instrument or securities. The Board of Directors of the company at its meeting held on January 30, 2018, approved the same. Plastiblends India is India’s largest manufacturer and exporter of masterbatches and additive compounds for the plastic processing industry. ...
339 M&M inks SSA to acquire 26% stake in MITRA M&M 31 Jan, 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) has signed a Share Subscription Agreement (SSA) on January 30, 2018, for subscribing up to 26% of the share capital of M.I.T.R.A. Agro Equipments (MITRA), engaged in manufacturing and selling agricultural sprayers. The acquisition would be completed by February 2018. The acquisition would be in cash for which the company would pay around Rs 8 crore. MITRA would support M&M’s farm equipment sector’s growth in horticulture applications in India by adding new product line. M&M is the flagship company of the Mahindra Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. Amongst the various business interests of its parent group, the company is mainly involved in the automobile manufacturing. It is one of the leading auto companies of India. ...
340 Mahindra planning electric cabs, EV parts supply business M&M 31 Jan, 2018 Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd plans to start a business that will operate a fleet of electric cabs and turn its electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing unit into a supplier of parts to EV makers. India’s largest maker of EVs plans to turn its unit Mahindra Electric Mobility Ltd, which makes the e20Plus electric car, into a supplier of batteries, starter motors, power electronics and transmission to its parent and other vehicle makers. “We have a different model for Mahindra Electric now, which (the company) is now a provider of electric kits and not a maker of Mahindra electric vehicles,” Pawan Goenka, the 63-year-old managing director of Mumbai-based Mahindra, said in an interview. “So, it is like Intel Inside. In a way, Mahindra has two electric vehicle businesses—one is to make electric vehicle kits that is Mahindra Electric, and the other is about selling electric vehicles, which is Mahindra & Mahindra,” Goenka added. “And if we get into mobility service, that will be the third business,” he said, adding the electric cab services business is likely to be named Mahindra Mobility Services. As the momentum in favour of vehicles running on green technologies such as electricity gathers pace, the traditional business models of the automotive industry are expected to change. Mint on 17 January reported that India’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd is looking for lithium suppliers for a battery plant in Gujarat, planning to build a brand new electric car for India and working with its dealers to set up vehicle charging networks as part of its initiative to build an electric car business portfolio. The Indian government has been categorical about promoting fully electric vehicles, and has substantially increased taxes on mild, full and plug-in hybrid vehicles. The government has stated its intent to move to an all-electric fleet by 2030. “Our main objective is to sell more and more electric vehicles,” Goenka said. Mahindra’s mobility service business will not be similar to that of cab-hailing services run by Ola (owned by ANI Technologies) and Uber Inc. “That is not something Mahindra would get in, as that is the business that requires 8-10 years gestation before you start seeing financial returns,” Goenka said. “When you are looking at fleet operations, it is best to continue to work with service providers or we should also become a service provider. Right now, we have not ruled it out. We have not made a decision. But, we obviously are not going to be captive... in a sense that electric vehicles may not just be used by a Mahindra service provider company. We need to be potentially catering to all service providers in this field,” he explained. The aim is to demonstrate that it is a good business to get into, something like what Lithium, run by Bangalore-based Urban Technologies, does, Goenka said. Lithium procures Mahindra’s electric cars and caters to the mobility needs of corporate customers. Goenka’s confidence in the mobility service as a business stems from his company’s pilot projects which have been running in a few cities, including Nagpur. “We have run 1.8 million km in six months. Feedback from drivers and customers is very positive. But, it has taken a long time to get charging stations put in. I think even now, we have only about eight and we needed about 20 to ramp up further,” Goenka said, highlighting the need for a rapid build-out of charging infrastructure, the lack of which is hobbling the growth of the EV industry....
341 Fitch downgrades rating assigned to RCom’s arm RCOM 31 Jan, 2018 Fitch has downgraded rating assigned to Global Cloud Xchange (GCX), a subsidiary of Reliance Communications (RCom), citing a variety of factors, including the woes of its parent RCom. GCX’s issuer default rating has been downgraded to ‘CCC’ from the earlier ‘B-‘, while the one on the $350- million secured notes due 2019 has been revised down to ‘B-‘ from ‘B+’, with a recovery rating of ‘RR2’. RCom is India’s foremost and truly integrated telecommunications service provider. ...
342 Maruti Suzuki to invest Rs 4,000 crore on capital expenditure in FY19 MARUTI 30 Jan, 2018 Maruti Suzuki India will invest Rs 4,000 crore in the next fiscal on capital expenditure, including development of new products. The company is also targeting yet another year of double digit growth in the next financial year, similar to what it expects in the ongoing fiscal. Besides, the company is expecting to launch four new products, including the upcoming new Swift, in the next 12-18 months and target is to reach 5,000 sales and service outlets by 2020. Maruti Suzuki India (formerly known as Maruti Udyog) is an automobile manufacturer in India. It provides passenger cars, utility vehicles and vans. The firm also offers pre-owned car sales, fleet management and car financing services. ...
343 HCL Tech bags IT infrastructure services, application management contract HCLTECH 30 Jan, 2018 HCL Technologies (HCL) has bagged a five-year IT infrastructure services and application management contract with Cadent, the UK’s largest gas distribution network. The ground-breaking ‘cloud first’ multi-service deal will see HCL provide integrated public cloud hosting and SAP and Application Maintenance Services, including the migration of a significant applications portfolio to Amazon Web Services (AWS) public cloud. In addition, HCL will provide IT Service Management, Service Desk and Managed Workplace Services. HCL will deliver these services to support Cadent’s business operations which distribute gas to 11 million homes and businesses in the North West, Midlands, East and South East of England. HCL will provide MWS support to approximately 4,500 staff; including 3,500 field based-engineers who work across the company’s 65 regional depots. HCL is a leading global IT services company that helps global enterprises re–imagine and transform their businesses through Digital technology transformation. ...
344 Unitech Homebuyers Case: Deal To Sell Land Worth Rs 400 Crore Finalised UNITECH 30 Jan, 2018 Unitech Ltd. has finalised a deal to sell land worth Rs 400 crore in the homebuyers case in which the company was asked to deposit Rs 750 crore. The two land parcels that are part of the deal are situated in Chennai, Unitech’s counsels informed the apex court today. The amount will be deposited with the apex court once received, they added. The Supreme Court on Oct. 30 directed Unitech to deposit Rs 750 crore by December to secure bail for its director Sanjay Chandra, who is in jail in a case of alleged forgery lodged by buyers of Unitech’s housing project in Gurugram. The real estate firm had told the court that it would monetise its unencumbered properties and assets to recover money that would be used for the process of refunding buyers and completion of projects. Separately, the government filed a petition arguing that Unitech was a fit case for winding up, but considering the interest of thousands of homebuyers and small depositors, it wanted to take over the company’s management. The Supreme Court had ruled against that plea. Unitech has over Rs 6,000 crore debt and over 16,000 undelivered units from a total of nearly 70 projects. Both Sanjay Chandra and his brother Ajay Chandra continue to remain in judicial custody....
345 GAIL commences construction of pipeline work in West Bengal GAIL 30 Jan, 2018 GAIL (India) has commenced construction of pipeline work in West Bengal on fast track basis. The Jagdishpur-Haldia & Bokaro-Dhamra Natural Gas Pipeline (JHBDPL) project is being executed for providing fuel supply to Matix Fertilizers, Durgapur. The project is part of the Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga pipeline project that spans from Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh to Haldia in West Bengal and Bokaro in Jharkhand and Dhamra in Odisha. GAIL India is India’s principal Natural Gas Company with activities ranging from Gas Transmission and Marketing to Processing (for fractionating LPG, Propane, SBP Solvent and Pentane); transmission of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG); production and marketing of Petrochemicals like HDPE and LLDPE and leasing bandwidth in Telecommunications. ...
346 SSWL bags export order for 17,000 Steel Wheels SSWL 29 Jan, 2018 Steel Strips Wheels (SSWL) has bagged yet another exports order for supply of Steel wheels for EU Caravan market. The order comprises of 17,000 Steel Wheels to be shipped from the company’s Chennai plant in the month of March 2018. The company has already established itself as a leading supplier of caravan Steel wheels in European region. SSWL is a part of the Steel Strips Group, headquartered in Chandigarh. It is engaged in the manufacturing of single piece steel wheel rims in the range of 10 to 30 inches for scooters, passenger cars, utility vehicles and tractors. ...
347 JSW Steel May Double Its Bid For Bhushan Steel To Rs 30,000 Crore JSWSTEEL 29 Jan, 2018 JSW Steel Ltd. is expected to double its bid for debt-laden Bhushan Steel Ltd. to as high as Rs 30,000 crore, setting the stage for a bidding war with rivals like Tata Steel Ltd. and ArcelorMittal, a source privy to the development said. On Jan. 24, the insolvency resolution professional for Bhushan Steel had extended the deadline to submit resolution plans to Feb. 3 from Jan. 25. “The liquidation value has been set at Rs 15,000 crore (by the committee of creditors); below that the bid will not be accepted. Looking at the competition, JSW Steel is expected to double its bid amount. It can be between Rs 25,000 crore and Rs 30,000 crore,” the source said. Bhushan Steel, among the 12 non-performing accounts identified by the Reserve Bank of India for resolution under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, owes its lenders Rs 44,478 crore. Also Read: Piramal To Join JSW Steel, JFE Steel In Bid For Bhushan Steel JSW Steel decided to bid for Bhushan Steel, maker of auto-grade steel in India, in a team. It roped in its Japanese business partner JFE Steel Corp and Piramal Enterprises Ltd., the flagship firm of Piramal Group, for the purpose. According to the information on Bhushan Steel's website, the company is the third-largest secondary steel producer in the country with an existing capacity of 5.6 million tonnes a year....
348 Reliance Jio to raise up to $2.2 billion debt to fund RCom deal RELIANCE 29 Jan, 2018 Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd will raise as much as $2.2 billion in foreign currency debt to fund the purchase of Reliance Communications Ltd (RCom)’s wireless assets, according to two people directly aware of the company’s discussions with lenders. While Reliance Jio hasn’t disclosed the value of the transaction to purchase RCom’s assets, the people cited above said that the deal would be funded through a mix of debt and internal accruals. Reliance Jio, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), will receive funding support from the parent, said one of the two people cited above. “The modality of the fundraising is being worked out and no decision has been made yet.” While requests for comments sent to RIL remained unanswered until press time, a senior company official who did not wish to be named said that all necessary approvals for the RCom deal were in place and the fundraising plans will be finalized in the next few weeks. In December, Jio agreed to buy RCom’s wireless spectrum, media convergence node assets, 43,000 towers, and around 178,000km of fibre network for an undisclosed sum. The deal involves primarily cash payment and an assumption of the deferred spectrum payment liabilities of RCom to the telecom department. In a January report, rating agency Icra Ltd said that any additional debt due to the acquisition will not impact Reliance Jio’s credit profile given the strong backing of its parent. Till 31 March 2017, RIL had invested Rs45,000 crore as equity and Rs33,785 crore as non-cumulative optionally convertible preference shares in Reliance Jio. It has also guaranteed Rs19,232 crore of Reliance Jio’s outstanding debt in the period. RIL owns 99.44% in Reliance Jio. Reliance Jio turned profitable in the quarter ended 31 December, about a year after it started services in September 2016. It reported a profit of Rs504 crore in the fiscal third quarter. “Jio’s profitability is to a large extent related to its low costs since Jio needs to maintain a single 4G network, while its competitors have to manage 2G and 3G networks along with 4G offerings. Going forward, Jio will also benefit from the recent reduction in call termination charges by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India since a vast majority of calls terminate in rival networks,” said Mahesh Uppal, founder, ComFirst consultancy, a telecom sector advisory firm. In December, Anil Ambani-led RCom had announced a new asset monetization plan and its exit from the strategic debt restructuring programme. Ambani said that his company had agreed to a new debt resolution plan that will see RCom sell its assets—spectrum, fibre, telecom towers and real estate, apart from Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City—and does not entail lenders and bond-holders writing off dues or converting it into equity. Through this process, he hoped to cut RCom’s debt by Rs39,000 crore from the Rs45,000 crore it owed lenders at the end of October, Mint reported in December. Reliance Group companies have sued HT Media Ltd, Mint’s publisher, and nine others in the Bombay high court over a 2 October 2014 front-page story that they have disputed. HT Media is contesting the case....
349 Havells to set up a manufacturing unit in Rajasthan for an investment of Rs360cr HAVELLS 29 Jan, 2018 Havells is setting-up a new facility at Ghiloth, Neemrana, Rajasthan to manufacture consumer durables, as per the BSE filing. The total estimated cost for the project is Rs360cr (ex-land cost, as the company already owns the land), spread over a period of 3 years. The total investment will be funded through a mix of internal accruals and borrowings. Company expects to start the production from Q3FY19E. For this investment, the company will be entitled to investment subsidy under the M-SIPS (Modified Special Incentive Package Scheme) introduced by MEITY and also for various tax/ levies and other benefits from the State Government of Rajasthan. Havells' FY17 revenue mix comprised of - cables 39%, switchgears 23%, electrical consumer durables 23% and lighting & fixtures 16%. It enjoyed 28% market share in the domestic switchgear segment. Acquisition of LEEL has helped it foray into washing machines, room ACs and refrigerators. The merger synergies post LEEL acquisition is expected to drive sales growth. Having achieved no.2 volume share in room AC market, Havells eyes penetration in growing Flat panel display (FPD) TV and washing machines markets. Its manufacturing stronghold (93% in-house production), increasing presence in B2B business (B2C for lighting) and focus on new products for mass premium segment bodes well for growth. Havells India Ltd ended at Rs579.95, up by Rs 4.4 or 0.76% from its previous closing of Rs575.55 on the BSE....
350 Reliance Jio Launches Lowest Rental Of Rs 49 For Feature Phone Users RELIANCE 27 Jan, 2018 Turning its focus towards feature phone users, Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. today announced the lowest rental plan of Rs 49 in which it will offer unlimited voice and data for 28 days for JioPhone subscribers, effective Jan. 26. “JioPhone users will enjoy free voice calls and unlimited data (1GB at high speed) for 28 days at a price of only Rs 49. Jio is also introducing affordable data add-ons at Rs 11, 21, 51 and 101,” the company said in a statement. “Tariffs charged for feature phone users continue to be exorbitant, while their smartphone counterparts on Jio enjoy free voice calls and high speed data at the most affordable tariffs. The high feature phone tariffs make it impossible for them to even think of using data...Jio has made data affordable for everyone,” the statement said. Besides, the telco as part of its ‘Republic Day offer’ will double the validity of Rs 98 pack to 28 days from the current 14 days. “...this Republic Day will mark an acceleration towards achieving the vision of Digital Freedom for the 50 crore feature phone users of India. Currently, they can neither afford even the cheapest 4G LTE smartphone, nor the exorbitant cost of data and voice charged for 2G services,” Jio said. Also Read: Reliance Jio Stands Out In A Gloomy Quarter For Telecom Recently, Reliance Jio also decided to offer 500 MB extra data to its subscribers using 1GB and 1.5GB per day data packs with effect from Jan. 26. Mobile data rates will see a further drop to as low as Rs 2.7 per GB with Reliance Jio announcing extra 500 MB data for its users of select plans as part of ‘Republic Day offer’, as per a Bank of America Merrill Lynch report. Jio’s closest rival Bharti Airtel data cost per GB has dropped to Rs 4 under its new schemes. The tariff of Rs 2.7 per GB data is about 99 percent lower compared to Rs 249-259 per GB charged by established big operators till August 2016 -- before commercial launch of Jio services....
351 ONGC-HPCL deal saves govt from breach of fiscal deficit goals ONGC 27 Jan, 2018 Is ONGC’s acquisition of promoter stake in Hindustan Petroleum Corporation a strategic sale or a disinvestment? The Finance Ministry terms it a strategic sale, while the Ministry for Petroleum & Natural Gas has called it innovative vertical integration. Experts are divided on whether it is a case of disinvestment by the government or if it is just a vertical integration. While the discussions continue, the deal, according to those associated with it, appears to have ensured the government will not miss its divestment and fiscal deficit targets. Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram, in his tweets, pointed out that though the government has lowered its borrowing, ONGC will borrow an equal amount to pay the Centre for HPCL shares. “It has the same effect,” he had said. Balancing the fiscal deficit had become tougher for the government after a ?50,000-crore additional borrowing announced in December last year. This had raised concerns that the government may breach its 3.2 per cent fiscal deficit target. A few weeks later, the additional borrowing was lowered by ?30,000 crore, and when the near-?37,000 crore deal was announced, it was labelled a strategic sale. Interestingly, the government appears to have transferred the borrowing liabilities so that it will not show on the government’s books, cleaning up the sheet to meet the fiscal deficit targets. “ONGC’s borrowings to fund the deal will be like an off-budget liability for the government. It will reflect in the outstanding liability of the government, but will not be in the fiscal deficit calculations,” said NR Bhanumurthy, Professor, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy. “ONGC will either borrow or fund or use a mix of both to pay the government this money. Thus, the borrowing is off-Budget through the CPSE while there is revenue accrued to government under the divestment head. This is legitimate when the government wants to retain stakes in profitable public sector enterprises as well as allow them to have a larger scale of operation,” said Ranen Banerjee, Partner and Leader (Public Finance and Economics), PwC India. But other experts argue that the stake-buy does not fall under the traditional definition of disinvestment or strategic sale. This is because the government will continue to have control over HPCL despite selling its entire stake to ONGC. If considered as a case of disinvestment, the stake sale will take up the total proceeds from disinvestment in state-owned firms to over ?92,000 crore this fiscal, giving much relief to the Centre, which is reviewing its balance sheet ahead of the Union Budget. Critics also argue that it’s not a divestment per se unless an open offer is called by the government. One-time capital receipts “The government is selling its shares in HPCL to ONGC. It is not like a regular disinvestment; these receipts are technically one-time capital receipts. So, it is difficult to argue that it is not disinvestment money,” noted an official. This is seconded by K Ravichandran, Senior Vice-President, ICRA Ltd. He said, “I would call it a disinvestment; whether or not to call an open offer is a technical issue. The government had taken an exemption from SEBI for not calling an open offer and we must respect the regulator’s order.” “From the government’s point of view, it does not matter whether the money comes from ONGC or from any other private company. It’s like killing two birds with one stone by not letting go of a profit-making company and collecting revenues too,” he added....
352 Davos WEF 2018: Sun Pharma Chairman Says U.S. FDA Scrutiny Will Lead To Better Products SUNPHARMA 27 Jan, 2018 The Indian pharmaceutical industry is upgrading its operations in response to tighter regulations and increased scrutiny from drug regulators. And that will lead to better, more competitive products, according to Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. Chairman Israel Makov. “Yes, it is a pressure, but it is a positive pressure. At the end of it, industry will produce better and more competitive products,” he told BloombergQuint’s Menaka Doshi on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland. Despite the heightened regulatory scrutiny – the company is awaiting re-inspection at two of its plants in Halol and Kharkhadi – and the pricing pressure in the U.S., Makov expects the financial year 2018-19 to be better than the last two. Sun Pharma is investing in specialty products and by 2020, that will form a significant part of the business, he added....
353 ONGC To Borrow Rs 35,000 Crore From Seven Banks To Fund HPCL Acquisition ONGC 25 Jan, 2018 State-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd. has signed loan agreements with seven lenders to finance its Rs 36,915-crore acquisition of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd. and create an integrated oil giant. India’s largest bank State Bank of India Ltd. will lend Rs 7,340 crore to ONGC, according to a stock exchange filing today. The country’s largest and second-largest private lenders HDFC Bank Ltd. and ICICI Bank Ltd. also agreed to extend one-year loans of Rs 4,000 crore each. The government-run Export-Import Bank of India will provide $250 million, approximately Rs 1,600 crore, for a year, ONGC said. The announcement came just a day after the oil explorer borrowed over Rs 18,000 crore from Punjab National Bank Ltd., Bank of India Ltd. and Axis Bank Ltd. Punjab National Bank: Rs 10,600 crore for one year. Bank of India: Rs 4,460 crore for one year. Axis Bank: Rs 3,000 crore for one year. Also Read: ONGC-HPCL Deal Is 12th Such Divestment That Really Isn’t The cash-rich explorer is tapping the debt market for the first time to fund the purchase. ONGC's board had approved raising Rs 35,000 crore from the markets, according to Shashi Shanker, chairman and managing director of the explorer. The government’s share sale is part of its plan to create a state-run oil behemoth to better compete with global rivals. The deal will also help it exceed its Rs 72,500-crore selloff target at a time when India has already exhausted its fiscal deficit limit in the first eight months of the year to March....
354 Sun Pharma says slump in US generic prices won’t last long SUNPHARMA 25 Jan, 2018 The chairman of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, India’s largest drugmaker, said he doesn’t expect the slump in US generic prices that’s roiling the global industry to last. Pressure on prices will eventually lead to restrictions on supply that will hurt the health-care industry, Sun Pharma chairman Israel Makov said in an interview with BloombergQuint at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “I see this as a temporary cycle.” A consolidation among pharmacies and intensifying competition have sent prices of generic drugs, cheaper copies of off-patent medicines, in the US into a tailspin and has left the global industry scrambling to adjust. Sun Pharma has warned that revenue this year may come in lower than last, and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, the world’s largest generic-drug maker, has said it would eliminate 25% of its workforce and sell assets. Makov, who was formerly the chief executive officer of Teva, said the current turmoil in the generic industry could be an opportunity for companies from India, already the world’s largest exporter of copycat medicines, to increase its share of the market globally....
355 Ashok Leyland wins Rs 350 cr order from VRL Logistics for 1,200 trucks ASHOKLEY 25 Jan, 2018 Hinduja group flagship firm Ashok Leyland today said it has received an order for 1,200 trucks worth over Rs. 350 crore from VRL Logistics Ltd (VRL). The trucks will come fitted with the latest in features and technology that will help VRL to have reduced maintenance time, fewer stop overs, better efficiency resulting in better uptime and increased profitability, the company said in a statement. Ashok Leyland Managing Director Vinod Dasari said, “VRL has, over the years, not only been our customer but has also worked very closely with us in developing new products which suit various customers.” The two companies have a long-standing relationship which surpasses the usual customer, vendor relationship, he added. The order of 1,200 trucks is for 600 units each of two models -- 3123 and 3723, the statement said. VRL Chairman and Managing Director Vijay Sankeshwar said, although the company is associated with multiple commercial vehicle manufacturers, 80 per cent of its existing fleet is procured from Ashok Leyland....
356 Gallant Ispat Board approves Rs510cr in capex GALLISPAT 25 Jan, 2018 The Board of Gallant Ispat approved a capex plan that would significantly expand the the production capacity of the company. The current crude steel production capacity currently stands at ~3.3 lakh MTPA. The expansion plan aims to expand this capacity to 4.95 lakh MTPA at an expected cost of ~Rs510cr. The proposed capex would be funded via internal accruals. The particulars of the proposed capacity addition are – (1) 1.65 lakh MTPA expansion of Steel Melt Shop, (2) 1.48 lakh MTPA expansion of DRI facility, (3) 1.65 lakh MTPA expansion of Rolling Mill. The expansion of the steel production would also include a benefication and pelletisation plant with a capacity of 6 lakh MTPA. The company would also expand the captive power generation capacity of the company by 20.5MW to 73.5MW. Gallantt Ispat is currently trading at Rs 360, down by Rs 6.65 or 1.81% from its previous closing of Rs 366.65 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs 360 and has touched a high and low of Rs 368 and Rs 351 respectively. So far 9453 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs 1035.28 crore. The BSE group 'B' stock of face value Rs 10 has touched a 52 week high of Rs 493 on 31-Mar-2017 and a 52 week low of Rs 173.55 on 04-Dec-2017. Last one week high and low of the scrip stood at Rs 387.9 and Rs 330.05 respectively. The promoters holding in the company stood at 64.09 % while Institutions and Non-Institutions held 0.16 % and 35.74 % respectively. The stock is currently trading above its 200 DMA....
357 FinMin may increase relief for taxpayers investing in infra projects OTHER 25 Jan, 2018 An increase in the income tax relief to Rs 2.5 lakh from Rs 2 lakh now is being considered by the Finance Ministry for those investing in infrastructure projects, sources told The Hindustan Times. Sources told the paper the matter was in advanced stages of discussion. "The higher deduction will be for investing in infrastructure projects in the form of bonds or through equity-linked savings schemes," a government official reportedly told the HT, adding investment routes will mostly have a lock-in period. As of now, under 80C, 80CC and 80CCD of the Income Tax, taxpayers get a total tax relief of Rs 200,000 on investments made in provident fund, public provident fund, and life insurance premiums, payment towards tuition fees of children, and home loans. An additional relief of Rs 50,000 is provided for investments in National Pension System (NPS). "There is intent to give tax relief to as many taxpayers as possible, but a higher deduction will mean loss of revenue so the exact quantum of the relief will depend on the government’s fiscal elbowroom," sources said. The government, however, must be cautious with populist measures in order to maintain the fiscal consolidation. The economy is already facing troubles in the oil front, low Goods and Services Tax collections and the need to improve the infrastructure which requires a heavy expenditure....
358 Bharti Airtel receives regulatory nod to buy Millicom's Rwanda unit BHARTIARTL 25 Jan, 2018 Bharti AirtelBSE -1.38 % has received regulatory approval to acquire Millicom International Cellular's Rwanda unit, Tigo Rwanda. The Sunil Mittal-led mobile carrier said Wednesday it had received approval from the Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA) to acquire Millicom's Rwanda subsidiary. Last month, Bharti AirtelBSE -1.38 % had inked a definitive pact with Millicom International under which Airtel Rwanda would buy 100% equity interest in Tigo Rwanda, and in turn, consolidate the Rwandan mobile market by putting Airtel as a strong No 2 carrier by revenue in the African country. "The merger will result in the only negative Ebitda OpCo (read: Airtel Rwanda) joining 13 positive Ebitda OpCos in Africa," Bharti Airtel said in a statement. Meaning, all 14 Airtel units in Africa will become Ebitda positive, going forward. The Airtel-Tigo merged entity will have the largest customer base in Rwanda with 5.9 million subscribers. It will also have the largest sales and distribution network in Rwanda. The combined networks of the two companies will serve customers with voice/data services, global roaming and mobile banking services, Bharti Airtel said. Bharti Airtel has been performing well in Africa, having reported a profit of $76 million in the December quarter compared with a loss of $93 million a year earlier, helped by a surge in data traffic and Airtel Money transactions. Airtel's Africa revenues too have grown 5.3% on-year to $783 million in three months ended December. Over the years, Bharti Airtel has been bolstering its market position to become a key player in the continent with in-country acquisitions. In the past, it has acquired assets in Uganda (Warid) and Congo B (Warid), Kenya (yu Mobile) and consolidated operations in Ghana (Millicom). In a recent interview to ET, Bharti Enterprises Chairman Sunil Mittal said that the company would look at consolidation in countries like Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania through mergers, acquisitions or both, even as the overall Africa business was turning a corner. ...
359 Reliance Energy to set up EV charging stations in Mumbai RELIANCE 24 Jan, 2018 Reliance Energy on Tuesday said it plans to set up over 15 electric vehicle charging stations across its distribution license area in suburban Mumbai over the next three years. The company, which recently sold its entire Mumbai power business to Adani Transmission for over ?18,800 crore, plans to start more than 15 charging stations in the next three years. “Apart from being environment-friendly, electric vehicles have low running cost which is one-sixth of conventional vehicles powered by petrol or diesel. This year, we are installing smart slow and fast charging stations at strategic locations of Reliance Energy,” a company spokesperson said in a statement issued here. These smart chargers provide reliable, secure and cost-efficient solution based on open industry interface technology, the spokesperson added. “The company is also working on a third-party business model to provide charging stations facilities for electric two-wheelers and four-wheelers in public places, parking plazas near highways, and offices and malls,” the release stated. The government is targetting to convert all new passenger car sales to electric vehicles by 2030 under the FAME (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles) Scheme. In order to achieve this target, an incentive is provided in the form of a subsidy of nearly ?1 lakh per vehicle to make these environment-friendly vehicles more affordable for people. Besides, the company also plans to introduce a fleet of 18 electric vehicles for its operational activities. The fleet consists of six four-wheelers and 12 two-wheelers. The operations team will use unique RF based cards to activate charging stations and recharge these vehicles, the company said....
360 HSIL launches new product ‘TRUFLO by Hindware’ HSIL 24 Jan, 2018 HSIL has launched new product ‘TRUFLO by Hindware’ under UPVC and CPVC plumbing pipes category. The company has launched the product in domestic market on January 22, 2018. The product will be primarily sourced from newly constructed pipes plant currently under trial production in the state of Telangana. The company is present in built-in kitchen appliances and claims to be the number three brand in the country in the category, and has launched water heaters, air coolers, water purifiers and air purifiers. ...
361 Gold Market Mulling Blockchain for $200 Billion of Supply OTHER 24 Jan, 2018 Blockchain technology may help keep track of the roughly $200 billion of the precious metal dug from remote mines, traded by middlemen and melted down by recyclers that’s sold each year to buyers scattered around the world. The London Bullion Market Association, which oversees the world’s biggest spot gold market, will seek proposals including the use of blockchain for tracing the origins of metal, partly to help prevent money laundering, terrorism funding and conflict minerals, according to Sakhila Mirza, an executive board director. “Blockchain cannot be ignored,” Mirza, also general counsel of the LBMA, said in an interview Monday. “Let’s understand how it can help us today, and address the risks that impact the precious metals market.” Markets in commodities from crude oil to diamonds and even tomatoes are looking at using the digital ledger technology that underpins cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin -- known to some as "digital gold" -- to track ownership. Tracing gold supply is key to preventing metal that funds armed conflict from entering world markets, identifying owners and maintaining security from mine to vault. How London’s Gold Market, the World’s Largest, Evolved: Timeline The LBMA has pushed ahead with efforts to modernize a trade that until recent years relied on phone auctions to set a key benchmark price for the market. “For us, it’s a question of where the gold comes from,” Mirza said. The LBMA oversees a list of refiners approved to supply the London market. Its London Good Delivery List sets global standards for large gold and silver bars. The LBMA will also study tagging the metal and using other security features to ensure bars are exactly what they say they are, it said in a statement Tuesday. “Everything that ends up in an LBMA good-delivery refiner needs to be tracked in the supply chain, regardless of whether it ends up as a large bar in a London vault, a kilo bar shipped to the Far East, or a coin owned by a collector,” Mirza said. “A lot has been done already but it’s still very paper-based. We now want to formalize it through an efficient and possibly technologically based solution.” ...
362 Jet Airways reports passenger load factor of 88.5% in December JETAIRWAYS 24 Jan, 2018 Jet Airways has reported the Passenger Load Factor (PLF) of 88.5% during the month of December 2017. The company has reported the Passenger Load Factor (PLF) of 87.3% during the month of November 2017. The PLF is a key indicator of the company’s performance, as it measures the average percentage of seats filled on airline’s aircraft fleet. Jet Airways is India’s premier international airline, which operates flights to India and overseas. The company’s robust domestic India network spans the length and breadth of the country covering metro cities, state capitals and emerging destinations. ...
363 Eveready Industries enters into JV with Universal Wellbeing EVEREADY 24 Jan, 2018 Eveready Industries (EIIL) has agreed to enter into a Joint Venture (JV) with Universal Wellbeing to engage in the business of manufacturing/importing and marketing of fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) in India. EIIL shall acquire 30% shares of the Joint Venture Company to be newly incorporated for the same. Balance 70% shall be acquired by Universal Wellbeing. Eveready Industries India (formerly known as Union Carbide India) is engaged in the manufacture of dry cell batteries and flashlights. It also manufactures tea under the brands Tez, Jaago, Premium Gold and Classic and insect repellents under the brand Eveready Poweron. The company was founded in 1905 and is based in Kolkata, West Bengal. ...
364 Ashok Leyland aims to increase export basket of LCV ASHOKLEY 23 Jan, 2018 Ashok Leyland is aiming to increase its export basket of light commercial vehicles (LCV) to 25 per cent from the present 5 per cent over the next three years. In this regard, the company will invest Rs 400 crore into a new platform of LCVs that will continue to launch a new product every six months. Moreover, the company is targeting all the Gulf countries, Russia, Ukraine and lot of West African countries that follow left-hand drive and its left-hand drive vehicles will start coming from June this year. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
365 NMDC Hopes To Step Up Production After Third Quarter Disruptions NMDC 23 Jan, 2018 State-owned NMDC Ltd aims to produce about 45 million tonnes (MT) of iron ore during the next financial year as against the expected 35 million tonnes in the current fiscal, a top official of the company said. "For 2018-19, we are looking at 43-45 MT production. It again depends on factors like logistics," N Baijendra Kumar, chairman and managing director of NMDC, told PTI. “We have to go up to 67 MT by 2022”, he added. Last year, the company achieved 34.5 million tonnes of production. In 2017-18, the company had a good first two quarters, but “unfortunately” the third quarter was marred by problems of the railway line being affected by the rains, Kumar said. “That had taken away one-and-half months time. But still we are coping with the situation and the production levels are maintained," he explained. We are aiming 37 MT for FY18, but we may up a little bit below. So 35 MT is a safe assumption. N Baijendra Kumar, Chairman and Managing Director, NMDC The CMD said he recently wrote a letter to the Chief Secretary of Odisha, requesting the state government to allot the mines that have stopped operations after a Supreme Court order over penalty issues. He added that a high-level team comprising directors of NMDC N K Nanda and P K Satpathy recently met Odisha Chief Secretary A P Padhi to discuss the matter. "As a Navratna company we have responsibility towards the nation. With the closure of mines in Odisha, our assessment is that there may be a shortfall of around 20 MT per annum of iron ore,” Kumar said."This will be reflected from the last quarter of this fiscal. We have necessary infrastructure with us for mining. We are interested to develop mines in Odisha, not with a profit motive but to overcome shortfall of ore," he said. Replying to a query, he said the steel plant that is coming up in Nagarnar, Chhattisgarh, may be commissioned by November this year. He said the state-run miner has spent about Rs 13,000 crore on the plant so far and expects to spend about Rs 2000-3000 crore more to complete it. Kumar said they are requesting the Madhya Pradesh government to allot some diamond mines to NMDC on a nomination basis. "We have requested the Madhya Pradesh government to allot diamond mines on a nomination basis. If they call for bidding, we will participate. We have already been involved in exploration in MP," he added. According to him, the PSU scaled down diamond mining activities at Panna in MP due to issues related to wildlife protection and environment. Though the diamond mining capacity is pegged at about one lakh carat per annum, the company is producing 35,000 to 36,000 carat only, Kumar added....
366 Possible Merger With MRPL May Not Happen At Premium, HPCL Says OTHER 23 Jan, 2018 The anticipated merger between refiner and marketer Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd. and Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd. will not happen at a premium in all likelihood. “I don’t think Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd. will transfer its subsidiary, MRPL’s stake to HPCL at a premium, if at all the deal were to happen,” MK Surana, chairman and managing director of HPCL, told BloombergQuint in an interview. He added that ONGC might gain on one side, but will incur losses on the other hand, as both HPCL and MRPL are its subsidiaries. This comes after ONGC announced its plan to acquire the government’s 51.1 percent stake in HPCL for Rs 36,915 crore on Saturday. The company added that it will buy HPCL shares at Rs 473.97 apiece, implying a premium of nearly 18 percent to HPCL’s price at around 10 a.m. Shashi Shanker, chairman, ONGC had not ruled out the chances of a possible merger between HPCL and MRPL later at a press conference, calling it a “logical” option. Resonating with his view, Surana said that while ONGC-HPCL merger did not make much sense, MRPL-HPCL deal would make better sense. MRPL is a standalone refining company, and will add to HPCL’s refining capacity which is lagging for now, said Surana. “From an overall efficiency point viewpoint, the deal is logical.” The transaction between ONGC and HPCL can be optimised further, with the integration of MRPL with HPCL as far as the crude procurement, R&D effects, supply logistics are concerned....
367 Jet Airways seen up on discount up to 30% on base fare JETAIRWAYS 23 Jan, 2018 Shares of Jet Airways India are set to gain after the airline offered discounted fares for travel on domestic and international flights till Monday. The company will give up to 10% and 20% discount on economy and premiere fares respectively, only for domestic routes and valid for travel from Feb 1. For international routes, the discount is up to 30% and is valid for immediate travel....
368 India sees scope for more integration among state energy companies OTHER 23 Jan, 2018 India could see more integration among state oil companies, its oil minister said on Monday, following top producer ONGC's $5.8 billion deal last week to buy a majority stake in refiner Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd. India wants to build bigger oil companies to better compete with global energy giants and withstand oil price volatility through integration of state-run oil firms. "There is scope for more vertical integration in the sector," oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan told a news conference. He was speaking after Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) announced on Saturday that it was buying the government's 51.1 percent stake in HPCL to create India's first integrated oil and gas company. Analysts have said that an integrated oil company would give Indian state-owned firms a bigger balance sheet to compete globally for assets. Last year state-run refiners Indian Oil Corp Ltd and Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd separately expressed interest in buying the government's stakes in explorer Oil India Ltd and gas utility GAIL India Ltd. ONGC's purchase of a majority stake in HPCL is expected to close by the end of this month and Pradhan said there was a possibility to combine HPCL with ONGC's petrochemical projects and its refining arm Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd. MRPL operates a 300,000 bpd refinery in the southern state of Karnataka. After the deal, ONGC will control around 17 percent of India's 5 million bpd or so refining capacity. HPCL Chairman M. K. Surana said on Monday that there could be a merger between his firm and MRPL to achieve synergy benefits in the refining and petrochemicals sectors, although he noted no discussions had yet taken place....
369 Maruti Suzuki planning to introduce four new products MARUTI 22 Jan, 2018 Maruti Suzuki India is planning to introduce around four new products in the next 12 to 18 months to build further on five years of successive double-digit sales growth. The company is expecting to close the ongoing financial year with double-digit sales growth. The company will launch the all-new version of its popular hatchback Swift at the upcoming Auto Expo to be held from February 9-14. Its sales in the domestic market during the April-December period grew by 15.5 per cent at 12,26,418 units as against 10,61,873 units in the year-ago period. ...
370 NMDC aims to produce about 45 MT iron ore in next fiscal NMDC 22 Jan, 2018 NMDC aims to produce about 45 million tonnes (MT) of iron ore during the next financial year as against the expected 35 MT in the current fiscal. The state-run miner has spent about Rs 13,000 crore so far on the steel plant that is coming up in Nagarnar, Chhattisgarh and expects to spend about Rs 2000 to Rs 3000 crore more to complete it. NMDC is a state-controlled mineral producer of the Government of India. It is fully owned by the Government of India and is under administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. ...
371 ONGC to acquire 51.11% stake in HPCL for Rs 36,915 crore ONGC 22 Jan, 2018 Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) has received an approval for acquisition of entire 51.11% shareholding (778,845,375 equity shares) of the President of India in Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL) at a cash purchase consideration of Rs 473.97 per share with a total acquisition cost of Rs 36,915 crore. The board of directors at its meeting held on January 19, 2018 has approved for the same. Further, ONGC has entered into a share purchase agreement with the President for acquiring the 778,845,375 equity shares of HPCL (representing 51.11% of HPCL) on January 20, 2018. The parties expect to complete the transaction before end of January 2018. ONGC is India’s largest government-run corporation and produces about 70% of India’s crude oil and natural gas. The corporation is the biggest public sector commercial organization in India. ...
372 ITC’s cigarettes business yet to recover from GST cess blow ITC 22 Jan, 2018 In any other year, this month would have been the occasion to wonder if ITC Ltd would face a hike in duties on cigarettes in the Budget. Under the goods and services tax (GST), that has changed as the rate fixing decision now rests with the GST Council. Not that it has made life easier for ITC. The surprise hike in cess on cigarettes in July has hit ITC’s performance for the second quarter now. Its packaged consumer goods business has recovered but that is good for sales growth alone. Year-on-year growth is not comparable due to accounting differences under GST. Its comparable consumer business growth was 16.2%, similar to the 17% growth that Hindustan Unilever Ltd reported. Overall, ITC’s net sales rose by 5.7% over a year ago. ITC needs its cigarettes business to normalize for sales growth to revive but especially for profitability to improve. Even if this were to happen sometime in fiscal 2019, if the government repeats its tax hikes on cigarettes, it may again set back ITC’s growth. On a sequential basis, ITC’s profitability has improved with its segment margin rising by 96 basis points. One basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point. But cigarettes played no role in that as its margin declined by 1.7 percentage points, which should worry investors. Margins improved mainly due to higher contribution from packaged consumer goods, trading in agricultural products and hotels....
373 Bumper debut! Apollo Micro Systems lists 74% higher at Rs 478 APOLLO 22 Jan, 2018 Shares of Apollo Micro Systems made a strong debut on the exchanges on Monday, gaining a whopping 74 percent in the opening tick. The stock listed at Rs 478 on the BSE, an increase of Rs 203. The company's Rs 156-crore IPO saw huge oversubscription of 248.51 times between January 10 and January 12. The company, which caters primarily to the defence and aerospace sectors, had set an issue price for its initial public offer at Rs 275 per share. Out of Rs 156 crore, Apollo Micro Systems raised nearly Rs 47 crore from anchor investors at the higher end of price band of Rs 270-275 per share. Considering the market's strong momentum and that the issue was met with a phenomenal response from investors, the listing price premium could be around Rs 200 per share over the IPO price, experts suggested. The company will use the proceeds of the issue to meet any additional working capital requirements and for general corporate purposes....
374 Tata Motors hikes product prices by 1-3.7% in Mumbai TATAMOTORS 22 Jan, 2018 Tata Motors Ltd (TML) has increased ex-showroom prices of all its cars by 1.0-3.7% in Mumbai. This comes after the company offered a limited-period insurance and exchange offer to its customers on five models. According to Cogencis, the company has raised prices of the Tiago hatchback by 1.3-2.4% for the petrol variant, and 1.7-2.6% for the diesel variant. Prices for Tiago's petrol variant now start at Rs3,31,646 ex-showroom Mumbai, and Rs4,11,181 for the diesel variant. TML, on the consolidated level, derives ~80% of its revenue from wholly owned subsidiary, JLR, which had witnessed EBITDA margin decline in FY16 and FY17 on account of weakness in volumes growth, model mix and forex losses. Standalone business (~80% CV and PV) has experienced market share losses and is expected to turnaround the trend on account of better acceptance of SCR technology (CV) and series of new launches in PV segment (Tigor/Hexa/Tiago). We expect JLR volumes to improve on account of three new launches over F18-19E. Steady improvement in market share in both standalone CV and PV segments would drive 12% revenue CAGR over FY17-20E. EBITDA margin expansion of 120bps is expected owing to cost benefits from Slovakia plant, internal restructuring of domestic operations, and lower forex loss post FY18E. Consequently, we expect PAT to grow at 38% CAGR over FY17-20E....
375 Tata Steel to raise Rs12,800cr through rights issue TATASTEEL 22 Jan, 2018 Tata steel announced that it would be raising Rs12,800cr via a rights issue in mid February 2018. The rights issue would consist of two simultaneous but unlinked offers of – (1) 15.54cr fully paid up shares at Rs510 per share, and (2) 7.77cr partially paid up shares at Rs615 per share. The company would raise up to Rs8,000cr from the first offer and Rs4,800cr from the second offer. The rights entitlement ratio for the fully paid up shares is 4 fully paid up shares for 25 ordinary shares held on the record date. The rights entitlement ratio for the partially paid up shares is 2 fully paid up shares for 25 ordinary shares held on the record date. The record date for the issue is February 1, 2018. The issue would open on the February 14, 2018 and close on the February 28, 2018. On December 19, 2018, the Board of Directors of Tata Steel had approved the raising of capital via rights issue as well as a 5 mtpa expansion to the Kalinganagar steel plant. Currently, the Kalinganagar steel plant has a capacity of 3mtpa and had a utilization level of 100% for Q3FY18. TSL is an international steel company with a manufacturing presence in Europe and Asia. The domestic operations of TSL are backward integrated, which reduces the effect raw material prices have on the company. The total steel capacity of the company stood at 27.5mn tonnes as on FY17. The company is planning to upgrade the Kalinganagar plant from 3mn tonnes to 8mn tonnes. This would take the domestic steel capacity of TSL to ~18mn tonnes. The upcoming JV with Thyssen Krupp is expected to help revive the prospects for Tata Steel Europe through improved scale. We expect the company to report revenue CAGR of 6.6% over FY17-20E aided by (a) ~8.6% volume growth in domestic steel production supported by spending on infrastructure, (b) prices to remain steady over medium term due to better pricing environment for steel spreads. EBITDA margins are also likely to expand by ~229bps owing to better utilization for Tata Steel India. The stock is currently trading at 8.7x FY20E EPS....
376 Top banks suspend accounts of major Bitcoin exchanges in India OTHER 20 Jan, 2018 Top lenders including State Bank of India, Axis BankBSE 1.12 %, HDFC BankBSE 1.00 %, ICICI Bank and Yes Bank have suspended some accounts of major Bitcoin exchanges in India, suspecting dubious transactions, three people aware of the development said. The banks have also sought additional collateral from the promoters of these exchanges on their borrowings and have capped cash withdrawals from the few accounts that are still operational. "Since last month, banks have been asking for additional collateral with 1:1ratio," a person with knowledge of the matter said. The banks are scrutinising current accounts held by top Bitcoin exchanges, a second person said. Action has been initiated against the top 10 Bitcoin exchanges including Zebpay, Unocoin, CoinSecure and BtcxIndia, said four people aware of the matter. "The banks have not contacted the company or the promoters regarding the actions you have mentioned," said Sathvik Vishwanath, promoter of Unocoin. Emailed queries to Zebpay, Coin-Secure and BtcxIndia did not elicit any response. SBI, Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Yes Bank did not respond to emails seeking comment. Bitcoins are a digital currency that can be used to buy products and services without any intermediary. People also buy Bitcoins, which has been banned in some countries, as an investment. Largely Unregulated Although India hasn't banned Bitcoins, the cryptocurrency is largely unregulated. The total revenue of the top 10 exchanges in India could be about Rs 40,000 crore, according to tax officials scrutinising these companies. "These exchanges tend to show the total volumes both on buy and sell side as their revenue. In many instances, the exchanges themselves buy and sell cryptocurrencies on their own platform," said an indirect tax official who is part of a team investigating the applicability of sales tax on Bitcoin exchanges for the previous financial year. Many of the exchanges operate at a margin of close to 20%, according to the people. The profit comes from the premium charged by the exchanges, the difference in the buying and selling price and when the exchanges themselves get involved in trading. Most of the exchanges have different rates for buying and selling cryptocurrency. Often, the difference between buying and selling rates is about 25%. The accounts of the exchanges in India were frozen after banks discovered they were used for reasons other than those stated when they were opened, the people said. At least eight accounts in various banks have been suspended, while others are being scrutinised and have had cash withdrawal limits imposed. Even the operational accounts could be suspended in the coming weeks, the people said. "Reserve Bank of India has not issued any directive to us - it's a cautionary move on our part," a banker involved in the matter said. "We are wary about the purpose for which some of these current accounts are being used." The Bitcoin exchanges have multiple accounts with various banks, the people aware of the matter said. SUSPICIOUS TRANSACTION REPORTS Banks have been mandated to file Suspicious Transaction Reports with the Financial Intelligence Unit in a time-bound manner. "We have asked some of these companies to explain the businesses that they are involved in and why it was not specified when opening the accounts," said another banker who did not wish to be identified. "We will also be flagging some of these suspicious transactions with the concerned agencies." Unable to operate their bank accounts, many Bitcoin exchanges are facing cashflow problems. Some promoters are looking to pledge their personal property as collateral. Promoters had borrowed heavily from the banks and hoped to get private equity investment or other capital infusion, which hasn't happened. While there are cashflow issues, most of the exchanges have high revenue and healthy margins, said an investment banker who evaluated an exchange for investment. "We would not like to invest till the taxation part is clarified," he said. ET was the first to report on December 16 that tax departments in the country were assessing Bitcoin exchanges in India to determine their liability. At least two exchanges have approached the Authority for Advance Rulings seeking clarity on whether the goods and services tax (GST) applies to them. The income tax department had launched searches on top Bitcoin exchanges in December. The Indian government and the Reserve Bank of India have issued several warnings against dealing in Bitcoins, the former even comparing it with a Ponzi scheme. India has not banned Bitcoins, although eight countries including China have prohibited the digital currency. The promoters of some cryptocurrency exchanges have tried unsuccessfully to get an appointment with senior government officials for the past month, according to a senior executive working with one of the exchanges. Bitcoins have been volatile — having surged as much as 1,900% in 2017 to a high of $20,000 in December, they have crashed by half since then, ending at $10,000 on Friday. ...
377 ITC to add 5,000 rooms across new hotels ITC 19 Jan, 2018 ITC is planning to add 5,000 rooms across new hotels over the next 3-5 years. This would include the setting up of its first overseas property at Colombo in Sri Lanka. Currently, the company owns and manages 100-odd hotels, across 70 locations, with over 9,000 keys across its four brands. ITC has business a interests in cigarettes, hotels, paperboards and specialty papers, packaging, agri-business, packaged foods and confectionery, information technology, branded apparel, personal care, stationery, safety matches and other FMCG products. ...
378 Tata Steel unveils India’s First Branded LD Slag Product TATASTEEL 19 Jan, 2018 Tata Steel has launched two new products, Tata Aggreto and Tata Nirman, India’s first branded LD slag products for applications in road, fly ash brick and clinker making. The introduction of the two new branded products is part of Tata Steel’s journey of excellence. The addition of these two branded products in Tata Steel’s portfolio will be significant for the company and the industry as it marks India’s first step in the branded products category for processed steel slag. Tata Steel, the flagship company of the Tata group is the first integrated steel plant in Asia and is now the world’s second most geographically diversified steel producer and a Fortune 500 Company. ...
379 Why Indian Steelmakers Need To Be Cautious About Expansion OTHER 19 Jan, 2018 India’s steelmakers should be cautious while setting up new plants or buying stressed assets as the global capex recovery for metals is slow, and there are perpetual downside risks in the industry. That’s the warning coming from Rakesh Arora, managing partner at Go India Advisors and a long-time watcher of the mining and metals sector. He is bullish on cash-rich Coal India Ltd., NMDC Ltd. and Hindustan Zinc Ltd. “[But] one has to be cautious with companies having high debt and looking to expand, as it doesn’t bode too well in case things turn down.” That’s why Arora maintains a ‘neutral’ stance on Tata Steel Ltd. even after the steelmaker announced plans to raise $2 billion to buy stressed assets and repay part of its debt. Assets In Insolvency Among the stressed steelmakers going into insolvency, the most competitively bid for assets are likely to be Bhushan Steel Ltd. and Essar Steel Ltd., Arora told BloombergQuint. These two companies serve as a perfect opportunity for global steel majors like ArcelorMittal SA to enter the Indian market, he said. The Luxembourg-based steelmaker should be aggressive in its approach, considering that domestic peers like JSW Steel Ltd. and Tata Steel are potential bidders too, he added. BloombergQuint reported on Wednesday that the Ruia family may have found a way to bid for Essar Steel’s assets despite the clause asking promoters to clear pending dues before bidding for stressed assets. “Nobody knows the projects better than their existing promoters,” Arora said indicating that this would help the Ruias place a higher bid if permitted to participate. Overall, the first six months of 2018 look promising for commodities while the second half is clouded with doubt. It will largely depend on China’s stand on metals as it continues to cut down obsolete and polluting capacities, which will impact India’s imports. The weakening dollar also potentially threatens the industry as it will push up manufacturing costs....
380 Britannia goes premium with chocolate biscuit SUVEN 19 Jan, 2018 Suven Life Sciences has secured a product patent each from China and Sri Lanka corresponding to the new chemical entities (NCEs) for the treatment of disorders associated with neurodegenerative diseases. The two patents are valid through 2033 and 2032, respectively, the company said in a BSE filing. “We are pleased by the grant of these patents to Suven for our pipeline of molecules in the central nervous system (CNS) arena, which are being developed for cognitive disorders with high unmet medical need with a huge market potential globally,” Suven Life CEO Venkat Jasti said. According to the company, the granted claims of the patents are being developed as therapeutic agents and are useful in treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson and Schizophrenia. The stock was trading 2.42 per cent higher at Rs. 209.10 on BSE....
381 HDFC Bank’s market-cap crosses Rs 5 trillion mark HDFCBANK 18 Jan, 2018 HDFC Bank’s market capitalisation (market-cap) has reportedly crossed Rs 5 trillion for the first time ever after the share price of the bank hit a new high on January 18, 2018. The country’s private sector lender becoming the third firm after Reliance Industries (RIL) and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) to achieve this milestone. HDFC Bank is one of India’s premier banks providing a wide range of financial products and services using multiple distribution channels including a pan-India network of branches, ATMs, phone banking, net banking and mobile banking. ...
382 Mahindra Logistics to train 10K drivers under PMKVY MAHLOG 18 Jan, 2018 Mahindra Logistics (MLL) will train 10,000 drivers across India under the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojna (PMKVY). The company has initiated a special training programme to sensitise, train and empower drivers across India about safety and security. Along with Nidan Technologies, the empanelled agency by the Government, the company will impart training of defensive driving and anticipate situations while driving. Mahindra Logistics provides logistics solutions, warehousing facilities, freight forwarding and supply chain management services. It also provides people transport solutions, a specialised line of business which helps corporate clients move employees to and from the workplace. ...
383 Bharti Airtel adds 5.77 lakh subscribers in December BHARTIARTL 18 Jan, 2018 Bharti Airtel has added 5.77 lakh users in December 2017. Following this, the company’s total customer base has increased to 29.01 crore with market share of 29.55%. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. The company ranks amongst the top 3 mobile service providers globally in terms of subscribers. ...
384 Sun Pharma settles Patent Litigation for generic Linzess in US SUNPHARMA 17 Jan, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries’ wholly owned subsidiaries (collectively Sun Pharma) has reached an agreement with Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Allergan plc (together known as the Companies) to resolve the patent litigation regarding submission of an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) for a generic version of Linzess (Linaclotide capsules) in the US. Pursuant to the terms of the settlement, the companies will grant, the wholly owned subsidiaries of Sun Pharma, a license to market a generic version of Linzess in the United States beginning February 1, 2031 (subject to USFDA approval) or earlier under certain circumstances. As a result of the settlement, all Hatch-Waxman litigation between Sun Pharma and the Companies, regarding the Linzess patents, will be dismissed. The agreement is subject to customary regulatory approvals. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
385 IFC to invest around $150 million in Aditya Birla Finance ABCAPITAL 17 Jan, 2018 The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is planning to invest upto $150 million in Aditya Birla Finance Ltd (ABFL). The proceeds shall be used by ABFL to fund solar projects in select states. IFC proposes to invest up to $150 million (INR equivalent) through an INR ECB loan issued under Track III of RBI’s ECB guidelines, or subscription to secured, fixed, rated, listed Non-Convertible Debentures (NCDs) proposed to be issued by ABFL, said the World Bank's investment arm. The INR ECB loan will be issued under Track III of RBI’s ECB guidelines. The NCD issuance shall comply with regulator Sebi's guidelines for green bonds. The project will be the first dedicated climate finance funding for ABFL. ABFL is a 100 per cent subsidiary of Aditya Birla Capital Limited (ABCL), which is the holding company for all financial services businesses of Aditya Birla Group (ABG). In 2017, ABG undertook a restructuring exercise which involved the merger of group companies Aditya Birla Nuvo (parent of ABCL) and Grasim and subsequent demerger and listing of ABCL. The exercise has now been completed and ABCL got listed on September 1, 2017. Grasim holds 56 per cent in ABCL, promoters hold 17 per cent and balance is held by public shareholders....
386 RCom Embarks On Expanding Its Submarine Cable Business RCOM 17 Jan, 2018 Global Cloud Xchange, the submarine cable and cloud business arm of Reliance Communications Ltd., is building a new underground sea cable system that will quadruple its data carrying capacity between Europe, India and Hong Kong. The Eagle submarine cable system will connect India to Italy in Europe and Hong Kong in Asia-Pacific region, William Barney, co-Chief Executive Officer of RCom told BloombergQuint. The Anil Ambani-led company is looking to focus on its enterprise business after elder brother Mukesh Ambani agreed to buy its wireless assets. The full cost of the cable will be covered by pre-sales to customers and we have already pre-sold 50 percent of the $600 million cost, Barney said. In fact, we may end up with $800 million in pre-sales, he added. GCX will have five cable systems when Eagle gets commissioned by December 2020. It will replace some of the existing cable systems that will be nearly 30 years old by 2025. GCX will be one of its largest revenue generators for RCom which will embark on a new business model once it completes the restructuring of the wireless business. Its revenue will more than triple to more than $1 billion once Eagle takes off, said Barney. It currently has gross margins of 80 percent, and despite pressure on bandwidth pricing, hopes to maintain these margins, Barney added. ...
387 Ashok Leyland inks Letter of Intent with Phinergy of Israel ASHOKLEY 17 Jan, 2018 Ashok Leyland has inked a Letter of Intent (LoI) with Phinergy of Israel. With the intention of providing varying Energy Management solutions to the customers, Ashok Leyland and Phinergy will work towards the adaptation of unique, competitive, and sustainable solutions for high-energy applications in the commercial vehicles space. This step has been taken by the company in order to secure long-term arrangements for its EV Commercial Vehicles. Phinergy of Israel has developed cutting edge technology solutions for the use of Aluminium Air Batteries for EV and other applications. With Ashok Leyland, Phinergy will be tailoring its unique technology to meet the demanding high-energy requirements of Commercial Vehicles in the Indian market. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
388 Havells India launches India's first Water Purifier with pH balance HAVELLS 17 Jan, 2018 Havells India has unveiled a range of unique water purifiers capable of handling new age pollutants. These purifiers maintain the pH balance in water and add various essential minerals and trace elements lost during the reverse osmosis (RO) process. Havells range of technologically advanced water purifiers are designed to safely address these issues across varied geographies. Havells India is a leading FMEG company (Fast moving electrical goods) with presence across India. Its product range includes Industrial & Domestic Circuit Protection Switchgear, Cables& Wires, Motors, Fans, Power Capacitors, Luminaires for Domestic, Commercial & Industrial applications, Modular Switches etc. ...
389 DATA STORY: How India has turned into the world's second largest online market OTHER 17 Jan, 2018 The Indian public first got access to the internet in 1995. More than two decades on, the country now has the second most number of internet users in the world, just after China. Since the dawn of the millennium, the percentage of the Indian population with access to the internet has gone up from 0.5 percent to nearly 30 percent in 2016. There has been a three-fold increase since 2011, when the internet penetration rate in India stood at about 10 percent. Even though less than a third of the population has access to the internet and a large chunk of the market remains untapped, India is the second largest online market with more than 460 million internet users. As of 2016, India had an estimated 262 million mobile internet users living in urban areas, and 109 million living in rural areas. With growing e-commerce platforms and increasing use of social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, the number of internet users is expected to rise in the coming years. Reports have forecast that by 2021, there will be about 635.8 million internet users in India. This government's Digital India initiative can further fuel this growth. It has been observed that Indians prefer to use the internet over the mobile. About 323 million people in India accessed the internet through their mobile phones in 2016, which corresponds to about 24.3 percent of the country’s population. With the recent tariff war in the Indian telecom space, experts believe that this will further fuel the share of mobile internet users in the coming years....
390 IOC, Punjab government ink pact to set up biogas, bio-CNG plants IOC 16 Jan, 2018 Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Punjab government to set up bio-gas and bio-CNG plants in the state. The MoU with the company was signed by Punjab Bureau of Industrial Promotion (PBIP) and Punjab Energy Development Agency (PEDA). The pact is part of the state’s concerted efforts to find sustainable solutions to paddy straw burning, which has emerged as a major environmental concern. The plants, to be based on a new concept and technology, will be set up at a total investment of Rs 5,000 crore, and will generate employment for around 4,000 people. The project will be initiated with 42 plants becoming operational in 2018. It will be scaled up to 400 plants over the next 3-4 years, making it one of the biggest such projects in the country. IOC is the largest enterprise in the country and the foremost ranked Fortune Global 500 Company in India and has presence in the complete hydrocarbon value chain from downstream refining & marketing, pipeline transportation, Petrochemicals, E&P and Gas Marketing. ...
391 Tech Mahindra enters into partnership with ContextSpace Solutions TECHM 16 Jan, 2018 Tech Mahindra has entered into partnership with Israeli firm ContextSpace Solutions to develop the world’s first global software privacy ecosystem, MyData Shield. Besides, it has also launched ‘Tech Mahindra NxT’ to power start-ups in Israel, under which it will engage with 20 firms. Tech Mahindra is a leading provider of solutions and services to the telecommunications industry with a majority stake owned by Mahindra & Mahindra. The company, since 2002 has operations in China with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Guangzhou. ...
392 IOC inks pact with Phinergy to develop ultra lightweight batteries for EVs IOC 16 Jan, 2018 Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has signed an initial pact with Israel’s Phinergy for developing ultra lightweight metal-air batteries that can be used in electric vehicles (EVs). The letter of intent (LoI) envisages to encourage joint Research and development, deployment and manufacturing activities in the area of metal-air batteries for an array of applications, as stationary energy storage systems, electric mobility solutions etc. Besides, the company has also signed a LoI with Yeda Research and Development Co for cooperation in concentrated solar thermal technologies. This LoI intends to encourage joint research activities in the area of concentrated solar thermal technologies including concentrated solar power generation, solar fuels, solar thermal storage materials, technologies, systems and concepts. IOC is the largest enterprise in the country and the foremost ranked Fortune Global 500 Company in India and has presence in the complete hydrocarbon value chain from downstream refining & marketing, pipeline transportation, Petrochemicals, E&P and Gas Marketing. ...
393 ITC rolling out new campaign on triple bottomline strategy ITC 16 Jan, 2018 ITCBSE -0.54 % Ltd is rolling out a corporate campaign on its triple bottomline strategy of building economic, environmental and social capital to make a first mover advantage to build mass awareness on these issues expecting consumers will soon give preference to these while making their purchases. The conglomerate has roped in Ogilvy & Mather who created the campaign with the tag line 'Sab Saath Badhein'. ITC's chief executive officer Sanjiv Puri said the company felt the need to build a campaign in light of the decision taken to move beyond just shareholder value creation to focus on the larger issue of societal value creation. "We expect Indian consumers will soon exercise their choice on buying products and services of companies who focus on triple bottomline. This campaign will help to build ITC's corporate values at enterprise level rather than communicating them in individual campaign of the brands. This is the first time ITC will attempt to build wide-spread awareness about the triple bottomline approach," said Puri. Ogilvy & Mather India chairman and creative director Piyush Pandey said the campaign will highlight ITC's way of doing business of creating value not as a charity or CSR initiative but rather integrating it as sustainable way of doing business. The campaign will specifically focus on initiatives in watershed development, afforestation and social forestry and the e-Choupal network of connecting farmers, Pandey said. ITC will roll out the campaign in television and digital. Puri said ITC is the only company in the world of comparable dimension to be carbon positive for 12 years, water positive for 15 years and solid waste recycling positive for 10 years, apart from generating livelihoods for over six million people. "We had gathered feedback that there was a need to create widespread awareness of our triple bottom line philosophy and large scale sustainability interventions. This would spur thought, action and inspire a larger contribution to national priorities," Puri said ...
394 Reliance Industries to invest Rs5,000 crore in West Bengal: Mukesh Ambani RELIANCE 16 Jan, 2018 Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) chairman Mukesh Ambani on Tuesday said his company will invest Rs5,000 crore in West Bengal in businesses such as petroleum and retail. The investment will be made over the next three years and also promote electronic industry by manufacturing mobile phones and set top boxes, Ambani said at the two-day Bengal Global Business Summit which began in Kolkata. He said RIL has already pumped in Rs15,000 crore in the telecom business in the state although it had earlier committed to invest Rs4,500 crore. This was made possible due to conducive business environment in the state under chief minister Mamata Banerjee, Ambani said. The business summit is being attended by a host of prominent industrialists including L.N. Mittal of Arcelor Mittal, Sajjan Jindal of JSW Steel, Kishor Biyani of Future group, Uday Kotak, the head of Kotak group and Sanjiv Goenka, chairman of RP-Sanjiv Goenka group....
395 JSW Cement planning to increase production capacity in West Bengal JSWENERGY 15 Jan, 2018 JSW Cement is planning to increase the production capacity in West Bengal from 2.4 mtpa to 3.6 mtpa besides a captive power plant in the same location. The company is planning to build another 1.2 mtpa capacity for which another Rs 300 crore will be spent. The company will start the construction work within six months. The company has already started commercial production at Salboni in August. Moreover, an investment of Rs 800 crore had gone to build the 2.4 mtpa capacity. Presently, the total installed capacity of JSW Cement pan-India stood at 11.6 mtpa. ...
396 HDFC To Raise Rs 11,100 Crore From Investors Including KKR, GIC, Premji Invest HDFCBANK 15 Jan, 2018 Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd.’s board approved raising over Rs 11,000 crore by selling shares to a consortium of investors including private equity firm KKR and Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC. India’s largest mortgage lender will raise Rs 11,103.6 crore by issuing 6.4 crore shares at Rs 1,726.05 per share, according to its exchange filing. HDFC will allot shares to the following investors on a preferential basis: The preferential allotment, which represents 3.87 percent of HDFC’s enhanced equity share capital post the issue, will be completed within 15 days of shareholders’ approval. QIP Issue HDFC’s board has also approved raising Rs 1,896 crore via a qualified institutional placement. The QIP will be completed within 12 months of shareholders’ approval. BloombergQuint had reported on Dec.15 that HDFC plans to raise up to Rs 12,800 crore from a consortium of lenders led by private equity firm KKR and Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC. Also Read: HDFC Bank Lines Up Rs 24,000 Crore In Equity Fund Raising Rationale For Fund Raising Up to Rs 8,500 crore of the funds raised will be used to subscribe to the preferential allotment of its banking arm HDFC Bank Ltd. The Keki Mistry-led HDFC wants to participate in HDFC Bank's institutional share sale to ensure that its stake does not fall. Along with its subsidiaries, HDFC owns 21 percent in the bank. India’s largest mortgage lender will direct the rest of the amount raised to fund its new initiatives. It is exploring opportunities in health insurance with its subsidiary HDFC Ergo General Insurance Company. “We would like to be in health insurance in a big way. But that would require a reasonably large amount of investment,” HDFC Chief Executive Officer Keki Mistry had said at a press conference on Dec. 19. The mortgage lender is also mulling the acquisition and resolution of stressed assets in the country’s beleaguered real estate sector....
397 JSW to bid in partnership with a global PE player for Binani Cement today JSWENERGY 15 Jan, 2018 JSW Cement will make a bid on Monday in partnership with a global private equity (PE) player for debt-laden Binani Cement. The bid deadline for Binani is Monday. JSW Cement managing director Parth Jindal said the PE entity would have a majority in the proposed entity. He declined to divulge the name. He also said the bidding for Binani was expected to be aggressive, as at least 11 companies were likely to put bids. Lenders had extended the bid deadline in the wake of interest from suitors. Binani has annual capacity of 11.25 million tonnes, of which six mt is in India. It has a grinding unit in Dubai and a plant in China. JSW has a limestone deposit in Fujairah in the UAE and a clinker unit. Jindal said if JSW bagged Binani, the Fujairah unit could be integrated with Binani’s Dubai one. Binani has secured and unsecured debt of Rs 45 billion. Its liquidation value is Rs 23 billion. Jindal said the company didn’t have a war chest for stressed asset acquisitions. However, for an asset like Binani, it would use the might of the group. JSW has also put in a bid for Kalyanpur Cements, which has annual capacity of a million tonnes. It has the only limestone deposit in Bihar. JSW Cement’s current capacity is 11.6 mt. By 2020, it is eyeing 20 mt, through the organic route. If the bid for Binani is successful, it will not be consolidated into JSW Cement’s books immediately. The preferred model the JSW group has adopted for most stressed assets is to partner with PE entities. “We realise it will take two-three years to turn around these companies,” Jindal explained. “So, for two-three years, it will remain a separate entity.” Once JSW Cement goes for an initial public offering, likely in 2020, it will be merged. For Kalyanpur, however, JSW Cement has gone alone. Jindal said the balance sheets of the companies were strong and it had the ability to raise capital. In the case of Monnet Ispat & Energy, JSW Steel has partnered with AION Capital. The JSW-AION combine was the sole bidder for the asset. Jindal said as part of the resolution proposal for Monnet, it was proposed that JSW-AION would have 82 per cent, 10 per cent would be with the lenders and eight per cent with existing promoter Sandeep Jajodia. However, the lenders did not want Jajodia to hold any stake. Monnet has got an extension of 90 days, ending on April 13. The deliberations would be around that. JSW-AION had given a bid of Rs 24.7 billion and a plan entailing equity infusion of Rs 10 billion....
398 Glenmark initiates Phase IIb dose range finding study for GRC 27864 GLENMARK 15 Jan, 2018 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has been granted permission by the Directorate General of Health Services, Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO), Government of India, to conduct a Phase IIb dose range finding study to evaluate safety and efficacy of GRC 27864 in patients with moderate osteoarthritic pain. GRC 27864 is a potent, selective, and orally bioavailable inhibitor of microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1 (mPGES-1), a novel therapeutic target in pain management, which is up-regulated under inflammatory conditions. The Phase II study is planned in India in 624 patients of osteoarthritis of the knee and hip to evaluate safety, efficacy and; biomarkers to characterize novel mechanism differentiated from existing NSAID’s and selective COX-2 inhibitors. Primary objective of the study is to evaluate safety and tolerability of GRC 27864 given orally at daily doses of 10 mg, 25 mg and 75 mg for 12 weeks compared to placebo, in patients with moderate osteoarthritic pain. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals is a global pharmaceutical company. The company is engaged in the development of new chemical entities (NCEs) and new biological entities (NBEs). Its segments are India, United States, Latin America, Europe and Rest of the World (ROW). ...
399 India Turns Tesla Model on Its Head to Target Mass Market OTHER 13 Jan, 2018 Tesla Inc. helped electric vehicles gain a mainstream foothold in the U.S. by starting with luxury cars and then moving down-market. India’s nascent transition to EVs is heading in the opposite direction. Many consumers will get their first taste of electric vehicles from public-transit systems and corporate fleets in India, where car ownership per 1,000 citizens is just 20, compared with 800 in the U.S. Companies such as Bangalore-based Lithium Urban Technologies Pvt., which provides EV fleets to corporations, are expanding as India aspires to end sales of internal-combustion engines by 2030. “In the next five years we’ll have 10,000 electric cars and buses,” Sanjay Krishnan, the firm’s co-founder, said in an interview, adding that the company hopes to have its first electric bus as early as this year. India’s relatively low rate of car ownership means consumers have an opportunity to make the electrification leap without some of the challenges and costs other nations will face, and makes possible a path focused at first on mass transit and fleets. “We started with mass mobility and will then go to an aspirational model -- just the opposite of Tesla,” Mahesh Babu, chief executive officer of Mahindra Electric Mobility Ltd., said last month at a conference in New Delhi. “It’s important to think about public mobility when thinking of electric transport.” Mahindra partnered with ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc. in November to supply hundreds of electric vehicles for Delhi and Hyderabad. The company, along with Tata Motors Ltd., is also supplying battery-powered vehicles for India’s first 10,000-car tender, aimed at government employees. Read a QuickTake on progress toward an EV future Predictions about India’s path to wider EV acceptance mirror some of the ways in which China’s market developed. Consumers there were introduced to electric vehicles after heavy public investment in infrastructure including buses, taxi fleets and electric railways, according to Sophie Lu, an analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance in Beijing. The Chinese also became acclimated to the technology through a long legacy of electric bikes and low-speed EVs. And about 75 percent of vehicles in car-sharing fleets are electric, according to BNEF. Lithium Urban, whose clients include Accenture Plc and Tesco Plc, is looking to raise $20 million from institutional and strategic investors. It plans to double its current fleet of 400 electric cars over the next six months, expanding in New Delhi and entering cities including Chennai, Pune, Mumbai and Hyderabad, according to Joy Nandi, head of the national capital region at the company. Cost Comparison Lithium Urban uses Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd.’s electric-car model e2o to ferry corporate employees. The fleet is cheaper to run than internal-combustion engines, and its use by corporations assures vehicles travel the minimum 175 to 200 kilometers a day required to break even, Nandi said in an interview at his office near Delhi. “It costs under one rupee per kilometer on an electric car compared with four to five rupees on a diesel or petrol vehicle,” Nandi said. The company also sets up charging stations at its clients’ locations and is working with the government to build 60 of them in and around New Delhi. Even as corporations and public-transportation systems take their initial steps toward EV adoption, the nation’s goal of ending all sales of vehicles powered by fossil fuels in coming years will be a stretch, according to Rahul Mishra, a principal at AT Kearney. “The vision of electric mobility shows good intention to address emission concerns and leverage our strength in the power sector,” Mishra said in an interview. “However, a target without a clear road map is still an aspiration.” 500,000 EVs State-owned Energy Efficiency Services Ltd., which conducted a tender offer to replace the government’s fossil-fuel driven fleet with electric cars, sees potential demand of 500,000 vehicles. “Indian EVs will claim a good share of the mass-transportation market, unlike in the West,” Pawan Goenka, managing director at Mahindra & Mahindra, said in an interview. Goenka’s company plans to bid on all the government’s tenders for EVs for three-wheelers, four-wheelers and buses, Goenka said. Purchases made by fleet operators like Ola, Uber and Lithium Urban, along with regular large-scale procurement of EVs by the government, will accelerate the adoption of EVs in India, according to BNEF. Lithium Urban’s Nandi said he would like to see multiple operators succeed. “EV adoption in India will happen only as more players like us come into the market and buy more electric vehicles," he said. ...
400 Why IDFC Bank May Be Chasing A Merger With Capital First 13 Jan, 2018 IDFC Bank Ltd., according to media reports, is in talks to merge with non-bank lender Capital First Ltd. to boost its retail loan book after its bid to combine with the Shriram Group failed. The banking arm of infrastructure financier IDFC Ltd. is in exploratory talks with Capital First, CNBC-TV and the Economic Times separately reported quoting people aware of the development. IDFC Bank refused to “comment on market speculation”. Emails to Capital First, 35.97 percent owned by private equity firm Warburg Pincus, remained unanswered. IDFC Bank, which began operations in October 2015, is keen to expand its retail footprint over the next five years. It attempted to merge with the Shriram Group in a complex deal announced in July last year. Four months later, the two called off the merger after failing to agree on a share-swap ratio. IDFC Bank had then said its strategy to expand its retail business remained on track and it will continue to look for acquisitions to achieve that goal. So far IDFC Bank’s loan book is skewed toward infrastructure lending, which contributed 47.5 percent of its total loans as of Sept. 30. This is the loan book that the bank inherited from its parent IDFC Ltd when it received a banking licence from the RBI in 2014. It was one of only two entities (the other being Bandhan Financial Services) to get a banking licence. ...
401 Inflation Rises, Production Spurts As Economy Tries To Overcome Policy Disruptions OTHER 13 Jan, 2018 The Indian economy took a turn towards higher inflation and, possibly, higher growth at the end of 2017, as it left behind a 12-month period ridden with disruptions. The index of industrial production, which tracks factory output, rose 8.4 percent year-on-year in November, according to macroeconomic data released by the Central Statistics Office. That’s the fastest pace in 19-months, according to Bloomberg. Consumer price inflation too touched a 17-month high as it rose 5.2 in December. It does look like that a recovery might be underway, Saugata Bhattacharya, chief economist at Axis Bank, told BloombergQuint over the phone. All the high-frequency indicators, he said, suggest a pick-up and November is just the start of it. India expects to grow at 6.5 percent in 2017-18 as opposed to 7.1 percent earlier. That’s the slowest pace since 2014, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power. Over the last 14 months, the economy has been hit by the twin shocks of demonetisation and the nationwide rollout of the Goods and Services tax. “After going through deep structural reforms, the slowdown in the economy was inevitable,” Bhattacharya said. However, he expects the gross domestic product forecasts to be “revised upwards as more data comes in”. Is Industrial Growth Really Sustainable? Industrial growth, which surprised most economists, was led by a 10.2 percent rise in manufacturing output. The sector was among the worst hit by the note ban and the GST. Factory output in November mirrored the survey-based purchasing managers' index numbers, which rose to a 13-month high in the same month. The PMI hit a five-year high in December. If IIP continues to mirror PMI, higher manufacturing output can be expected for December. The extent of the uptick in industrial output reflected a favourable base effect and inventory rebuilding after the festive season, wrote Aditi Nayar, principal economist at ICRA in a note. This raises “some concerns regarding its sustainability beyond the third quarter,” she added. The IIP growth numbers should be taken with “a pinch of salt” as the indicator always throws up some aberrations, according to Dharamkirti Joshi, chief economist at Crisil. “One month of higher IIP and inflation does not change the story.” Unless this trend sustains, I don’t see anything changing. Dharamkirti Joshi, Chief Economist, Crisil Joshi said the direction of IIP is correct, but the “quantum of growth can be misleading”. There is some strength in the industry, he said, as all short-term indicators like PMI and automobile sales are reflecting a pickup in the economy. Read More: India’s Industrial Output Grows At Fastest Pace In 19 Months Inflation And The RBI The rise in consumer inflation, largely expected, was mainly due to the continued surge in vegetables, especially onions and tomatoes, and an unfavourable base effect. Vegetable prices rose nearly 30 percent over December last year. Higher vegetable prices have kept India’s inflation on the rise since July, when it had hit an all-time low. However, they're expected to cool down as fresh supplies hit the markets. “The mandi prices indicate vegetable prices are declining in January 2018. So, we believe CPI inflation for January will be lower than the December number,” according to Soumya Kanti Ghosh, chief economic adviser at the State Bank of India. But inflation “is likely to be on the higher side” between January and June owing to the base effect, Ghosh wrote in the SBI Ecowrap. This doesn't leave room for the RBI to cut rates as it expected inflation to be in the range of 4.3-4.7 percent in 2017-18, said Axis Bank’s Bhattacharya. That’s a possibility that is fast diminishing. Saugata Bhattacharya, Chief Economist, Axis Bank Bhattacharya said if the growth in industrial activity sustained then the RBI might not even need to cut rates. Being an inflation-targeting central bank, the RBI might wait to cut rates till inflation comes back to the 4 percent mark. However, growth is expected to be “significantly” higher by the time that happens, he said....
402 IOC purchases third shipload of US crude oil IOC 12 Jan, 2018 Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has purchased its third shipload or cargo of US crude oil as it looks at cheaper alternatives that have emerged due to the global supply glut. The company purchased 2 million barrels of light Louisiana sweet crude oil. The oil is for delivery at its Paradip refinery in Odisha during April 11-20. IOC is the largest enterprise in the country and the foremost ranked Fortune Global 500 Company in India and has presence in the complete hydrocarbon value chain from downstream refining & marketing, pipeline transportation, Petrochemicals, E&P and Gas Marketing. ...
403 RInfra emerges the lowest bidder in NTPC tender RELINFRA 12 Jan, 2018 Reliance Infrastructure Ltd (RInfra) has emerged as the lowest bidder in a ?567-crore EPC tender, floated by NTPC for setting up a system, which will remove sulphur dioxide from the exhaust gases of the Jhajjar power plant, sources said. The national power company runs a 1,500-MW thermal coal-based power plant at Jhajjar, Haryana. The plant has three units of 500 MW each. When thermal coal gets burnt at a power plant, sulphur dioxide along with other hazardous chemicals are emitted in the exhaust gases, which are also called flue gases. RInfra will install the Flue Gas Desulphurisation (FGD) system at the plant. The FGD system will help curb the pollution and improve the air quality around the plant. Considering the dipping air quality in the vicinity of coal-based power plants and the resultant health hazards, the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change had notified in 2015, the revised standards for emissions to be met by thermal power plants. Meeting of these standards requires comprehensive retrofits of power plants with FGD system in the operating units as well as units under construction. RInfra has emerged as the lowest bidder amid stiff competition from other EPC players such as BHEL, L&T and Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, sources said. The overall schedule for the project is 20 months from the date of allotment for the first unit with subsequent units at three months interval....
404 GAIL to set up coal to gas conversion plants GAIL 12 Jan, 2018 Natural gas transmission and distribution company, GAIL India, will now be setting up coal to gas conversion plants. Addressing the FICCI conference on Unleashing India’s Domestic Exploration and Production Potential, the Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan, said: “GAIL India to set up coal to synthetic gas plants in Odisha. This synthetic gas is expected to be cheaper than ?domestic gas.” “GAIL India is in talks with the Ministry of Fertiliser for the same,” he added....
405 Tanzania Rules That Airtel Operations Were Privatized Illegally BHARTIARTL 12 Jan, 2018 Tanzania ruled that the local unit of Indian mobile-phone company Bharti Airtel Ltd. was originally transferred from the state illegally and will start talks to try to retake what the government says is its rightful share of the business. A state investigation found that the initial privatization of Tanzania Telecommunications Corp. “broke the law, regulations and procedure,” according to a statement from President John Magufuli’s office that quoted Finance Minister Philip Mpango. “What we saw was very dirty and terrible. In short, our country was conned and a lot of money was lost,” Mpango said. For its part, Airtel said last month its 2010 acquisition of the 60 percent stake in the company from Kuwait’s Mobile Telecommunications Co., known as Zain, was in full compliance and followed all approvals from the government. Tanzania’s complaint relates to the initial privatization of the company five years prior to when Airtel took control, it said in a statement at the time. Tanzania’s ownership claim follows an order by the government last year that telecommunications companies should sell at least a quarter of their units on the local bourse to boost domestic ownership. The local operations of Johannesburg-based Vodacom Group Ltd. became the largest company on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange when it raised 476 billion shillings ($213 million) in August. Airtel has yet to list Airtel Tanzania, in which the government has a 40 percent stake. The Indian telecommunications company is the latest foreign investor to have a run in with the East African state. The government in July demanded $190 billion in back taxes from Acacia Mining Ltd., saying the gold miner had been under-declaring mineral exports for more than a decade. It later reached a deal with Acacia’s majority shareholder to have the subsidiary make a $300 million payment....
406 Maruti Suzuki hikes prices of vehicles by up to Rs 17,000 MARUTI 11 Jan, 2018 Maruti Suzuki India has increased prices ranging from Rs 1,700 to Rs 17,000 (ex-showroom - Delhi) across models, owing to increase in commodity and other administrative & distribution costs. The new prices are effective from January 10, 2018. Maruti Suzuki India (formerly known as Maruti Udyog) is an automobile manufacturer in India. It provides passenger cars, utility vehicles and vans. The firm also offers pre-owned car sales, fleet management and car financing services. ...
407 Tata Steel’s India business to see volume-led growth in December quarter TATASTEEL 11 Jan, 2018 Tata Steel Ltd’s steel sales have risen in its main markets of India and Europe. That should be good news for shareholders as rising output in an environment of rising prices is good news for steel producers. In its quarterly volume update, Tata Steel’s India sales of steel have risen by 10.4% over a year ago and by 7.1% sequentially. While a low base effect is one reason for the growth over a year ago, the sequential improvement after the roll-out of the goods and services tax (GST) is significant, too. Sales of value-added products, where it earns better margins, led this growth. Domestic steel prices have risen in the December quarter. A report on metals by Kotak Institutional Equities showed rebar prices having risen by 24% over a year ago, while hot rolled coil prices have risen by 7%. In Europe, Tata Steel’s sales rose by 3.4% over a year ago and declined sequentially, but that is a seasonal decline in demand due to winter. But Tata Steel pointed to output recovering sequentially as a sign of recovery post-annual maintenance shutdowns. While SouthEast Asia is a relatively small market for the company, this region did not do well with both output and sales declining, both over a year ago and sequentially. Tata Steel’s December quarter results should see good growth in sales as a result, although how much of that flows to margins also depends on how its input costs behave. Steel makers have been hit by a sharp increase in coal costs (eased a bit in the September quarter) and iron ore prices as well. Still, steel prices have been rising, and that could help absorb higher costs. In the September quarter, the firm’s Ebitda/tonne in Europe declined sequentially although the India business’ margins rose. Ebitda is short for earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, an indicator of operating profitability. If in the December quarter, Europe regains lost ground, it could give a considerable push to margins. Also, India’s profitability per tonne is the highest, and in the December quarter, India’s Ebitda/tonne was Rs11,078 compared with Europe’s Rs2,896. Tata Steel’s shares are up by 16.5% since October. This is chiefly due to the steel industry’s prospects looking better and because its European business is set to be spun off into a joint venture (JV) with Thyssenkrupp AG. In the longer run, Tata Steel’s expansion plans, the final structure of the European JV, and its bid to acquire domestic distressed steel assets are events to look out for. Even as it does these, what investors are expecting is a steady improvement in cash flows, better return on capital and a lower debt to equity profile....
408 Ferrero Is Said to Be Near Deal for Nestle U.S. Chocolates OTHER 11 Jan, 2018 Italian Nutella maker Ferrero SpA is nearing a deal to acquire Nestle SA’s U.S. confectionery business for about $2.8 billion, according to a person familiar with the matter. An agreement could be signed as early as Sunday, the person said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. The business, which includes the Butterfinger and Baby Ruth brands, is suffering a decline in revenue and had sales of about 900 million francs ($915 million) in 2016. Ferrero, which has traditionally shied away from acquisitions, is expanding its portfolio beyond Nutella hazelnut spread, Tic Tac candies and Ferrero Rocher chocolates. For Nestle, the world’s largest food company, this marks Chief Executive Officer Mark Schneider’s first major divestment and an initial step away from chocolate. Nestle and Ferrero declined to comment. The move shows closely held Ferrero is eyeing a bigger bite of the U.S. market after buying Ferrara Candy in December. That boosted its market share in that country to 4.8 percent. Last month, Hershey Co., which has been named as one of the potential bidders, agreed to pay $921 million for Amplify Snack Brands Inc., to expand into popcorn and potato chips. Nestle plans to focus on categories like coffee and pet food as the industry grapples with a drop in demand for sugary products. While the Swiss company has been moving toward healthier fare, it’s holding on to its prepared-dishes, ice cream and global confectionery businesses. Those product categories made up roughly 40 percent of total sales last year. Nestle shares fell 1.4 percent Wednesday in Zurich. The Swiss KitKat maker said in June it was considering options for the unit, and in December said it expected to sell the business in the first quarter of 2018....
409 Sun Pharma’s Halol unit gets good manufacturing certificate from Dutch Agency: Report SUNPHARMA 11 Jan, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries has reportedly received good manufacturing certificate from Dutch Agency for its Halol facility. The Dutch regulator had audited the company’s Halol unit on August 25, 2017. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
410 Motherson Sumi Systems forms JV with Ossia Inc. MOTHERSUMI 10 Jan, 2018 Motherson Sumi Systems (MSSL), part of the Samvardhana Motherson Group (SMG), through its subsidiary Samvardhana Motherson Automotive Systems Group B.V. (SMRPBV) has formed a Joint Venture (JV) with Ossia Inc., innovator of the revolutionary Cota Real Wireless Power technology. SMRPBV will hold majority share in the JV and will aim at bringing Ossia’s Cota power system into the interiors of some of the world’s most popular vehicles. The newly formed entity will be based in the USA, supported by SMG’s global organization. Globally, the JV will focus on the integration of Cota technology into a wide range of non-military passenger, commercial and public transportation vehicles. The JV aims to have its systems deployed in both private and public vehicles by 2021 to not only deliver continuous wireless power to occupants’ personal devices, but also power various sensors in and on the vehicles themselves, including brake sensors, tire pressure gauges and key fobs. In addition, the JV will be the distributor of all Cota wireless power products across multiple verticals such as IoT and consumer devices in India. Motherson Sumi Systems, including its subsidiaries and JVs is one of the leading manufacturer of automotive wiring harnesses, mirrors for passenger cars and a leading supplier of plastic components and modules to the automotive industry. ...
411 Bharti Airtel launches VoLTE services in Coimbatore BHARTIARTL 10 Jan, 2018 Bharti Airtel has launched VoLTE services in Coimbatore. Airtel VoLTE, which works over 4G, enables customers enjoy HD quality voice calls with faster call set up time. To get VoLTE, the smartphone user has to check the compatibility of the device. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
412 Sun Pharma’s arm hikes stake in Ranbaxy Malaysia SUNPHARMA 09 Jan, 2018 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries’ one of the wholly owned subsidiaries has increased its shareholding in Ranbaxy Malaysia, Malaysia, by way of further purchase of 508,313 shares of face value of MYR 1.00 each (equivalent to 6.35%) of Ranbaxy Malaysia. Ranbaxy Malaysia is a subsidiary of the company, and the total shareholding of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries along with its wholly owned subsidiary is 79.55%, prior to this purchase of shares. Post completion of this purchase of shares, the total holding of the company along with its wholly owned subsidiary will increase from 79.55% to 85.90% in Ranbaxy Malaysia. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
413 GVK Power Signs Agreement To Develop Navi Mumbai Airport GVKPIL 09 Jan, 2018 GVK Power and Infrastructure Ltd. today signed an agreement to develop the Navi Mumbai airport, which had been held up for nearly two decades due to land acquisition and environmental issues. The concession agreement was signed through the creation of a special purpose vehicle, Navi Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd, with City and Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra Ltd., GVK Power said in an exchange filing. CIDCO is the nodal city planning agency of the Maharashtra government. GVK Power and Infrastructure Ltd, through its subsidiary Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd, holds 74 percent stake of the SPV, while CIDCO holds 26 percent. The initial concession period is 30 years, which can be extended to another 10 years, the filing said. The GVK-led Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd., which operates the Mumbai airport, had won the bid in February 2017 and received the letter of award from CIDCO in October. GVK Reddy, executive chairman of MIAL said, “We are delighted that GVK has got the opportunity to yet again to display its technical and managerial prowess in the airport sector after having created the award winning Mumbai airport, for developing and managing the Navi Mumbai International Airport.” Shares of GVK Power were locked at upper circuit at Rs 21.10 on the BSE....
414 Government Looks To Raise Rs 750 Crore From NMDC Stake Sale NMDC 09 Jan, 2018 The government will sell a 1.5 percent stake in the National Mineral Development Corporation Ltd., the country's largest mining company, through an offer for sale. The sale could fetch around Rs 750 crore to the exchequer, Bloomberg reported citing a government official it did not identify. The two-day offer for sale will start tomorrow, and has a greenshoe option of 1.5 percent, which allows the government to retain that quantum in case of oversubscription, the company said in a stock exchange filing. The floor price for the sale has been set at Rs 153.50 a piece. Retail investors can bid at a 5 percent discount to the cut-off price, as per the filing. The offer is open to bidding for non-retail investors from tomorrow and will open on Dec. 10 for retail investors. The government has already raised over Rs 52,500 crore in current fiscal through stake sale in public sector units, including listing of insurance PSUs and exchange traded fund. It has set an ambitious target of raising Rs 72,500 crore from disinvestment in the current fiscal. Of this, Rs 46,500 crore is to be raised through minority stake sale in PSUs and Rs 15,000 crore from strategic sales. Another Rs 11,000 crore is to come from listing of insurance companies....
415 Eveready forays into Rs9,000cr confectionary market through 'Jollies' EVEREADY 09 Jan, 2018 India’s leading dry cell battery maker, Eveready Industries India Limited (EIIL) has forayed into the Rs9,000cr confectionary market through its brand “Jollies”. In the first phase, Jollies will be launched in the fruit chew market, estimated to be Rs400cr and set to double over the next 3-4 years. The company plans to make use of its pan-India battery distribution network to sell Jollies in urban and rural areas. As per its FY17 Annual Report, EIIL has a 4,000+ distribution network and 42 distribution centres. EIIL’s products are available across more than 3.2mn outlets. Jollies is expected to enhance EIIL’s product portfolio comprising of batteries, flashlights, lighting, electricals, packet tea and small home appliances. Jollies fruit chew will be priced at Re1 and will have higher fruit content and lower sugar content. The company is working on an asset-light model involving outsourcing, and believes it can add significant turnover and profitability with an entry into the segment. While EIIL has a natural advantage by way of a huge pan-India distribution network, the company will have to spend considerably on advertising and promotion activities. The confectionary segment is highly competitive and impulse-driven, and hence, top-of-the-mind recall is of key importance. EIIL is a manufacturer of dry cell batteries, flashlights, lighting and packet tea. It derived 55% revenue from dry cell batteries, 14% from flashlights, 22% from Lighting & Electricals and 9% from other segments in FY17. The company has recently forayed into home appliances business and is a known brand in east and north Indian markets. It has shifted its business from declining CFL market to growing LED market and has launched new LED products. This shift is expected to add Rs25cr to its revenue by FY18E. We expect company to be debt-free by FY19E, which lends financial stability. Eveready Industries India Ltd ended at Rs443.3, down by Rs2.1 or 0.47% from its previous closing of Rs445.4 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs445.5 and touched a high and low of Rs450 and Rs435.75 respectively. A total of 31,066 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs3,221.9cr....
416 JSW Infrastructure-Srei to buy Sterling Port in Dahej JSWENERGY 09 Jan, 2018 A consortium of JSW Infrastructure, a part of Sajjan Jindal’s JSW Group, and Srei Infrastructure Finance Ltd is set to acquire the upcoming Sterling Port in Dahej from its lenders, according to two people aware of the matter. The JSW-Srei combine has reached an agreement with lenders of Sterling Port, which includes Srei Infrastructure Finance, Andhra Bank and Corporation Bank, said one of the two people cited above on condition of anonymity. Sterling owes lenders Rs300 crore and has an additional Rs80 crore in dues to the Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB), the regulator for all non-major ports in Gujarat. In one of the quickest resolution processes, the final bids were received last month after bids were invited from interested parties starting 1 November. PwC India advised the lenders, said the second person on condition of anonymity. Essar Ports Ltd, Shapoorji Pallonji Group, Chennai-based IMC Ltd, and Netherlands-based Royal Vopak NV had submitted expressions of interest to acquire the port controlled by the Vadodara-based Sandesara Group, Mint reported on 3 December. Lenders to Sterling Port plan to bring a strategic investor to replace the existing concessionaire at the Dahej port project in Gujarat, Mint reported on 30 October. Though Srei had submitted a bid on its own through unit ILog Port (Dahej) Pvt. Ltd, it was not considered as it didn’t meet the minimum revenue criterion of Rs500 crore, forcing the infrastructure financier to join hands with JSW Infrastructure, said the first person. Sterling Port promoters hold close to 74% equity in the port project, while the remaining stake is held by Sterling Biotech Ltd, the group’s publicly listed flagship company. Sterling Port was awarded a 30-year concession to develop an all-weather, direct-berthing port for handling dry bulk, liquid bulk and container cargoes. “We are exploring various mechanisms to recover our dues. We are open minded towards any structure, which is permitted under the regulations,” said a Srei spokesperson. Emails sent to spokespersons for JSW Infra, Sterling Port Ltd and Andhra Bank were not answered until press time. A PWC spokesperson declined to comment Mint had reported in March that Srei Infrastructure planned to acquire Sandesara Group’s stake in the Rs4,060-crore greenfield port being developed at Dahej. GMB had signed a concession agreement with Sterling Port for the development of Dahej port in June 2015. In phase-I, two solid cargo terminals, a liquid cargo terminal and a container terminal would be commissioned at a cost of around Rs2,500 crore. In phase-II, one terminal each for solid, liquid and container would be added. Ports and terminals under JSW Infrastructure in Maharashtra and Goa have an operational capacity of 33 million tonnes per annum. Within the next four years, this is going to increase more than six-fold to reach 200 mtpa, according to the company website. India’s merchandise exports grew 30.56% to $26.2 billion in November 2017 from a year ago, while merchandise imports increased 19.6% to $40 billion....
417 Solar Tariff Bottoms Out, May Not Have Free Fall In 2018 OTHER 08 Jan, 2018 Solar power tariff fall seems to have bottomed out and may not drop beyond an all-time low of Rs 2.44 per unit in absence of well structured bids and rising solar panel prices on demand pressure. The solar power tariff fell to an all-time low of Rs 2.44 per unit in May last year during an auction for 500 MW capacities at Bhadla (IV) in Rajasthan. It had the viability gap funding component, as per the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy data. According to data, the solar tariff rose to Rs 3.47 per unit for 1,500 MW capacities in Tamil Nadu under a state scheme in July and then dropped again to Rs 2.66 per unit in an auction for 500 MW capacities in Gujarat. Also: India Is Said to Consider 7.5% Tariff on Imported Solar Panels In an auction of state-run power giant NTPC for 250 MW capacity, the tariff was Rs 3.14 per unit. But it dropped again with viability gap funding to Rs 2.47 per unit and Rs 2.48 per unit for 500 MW Bhadla-III and 250 MW Bhadla-IV auctions in December 2017. High global demand has pushed up prices of solar modules. Also, the recent bids are not that well structured as previous ones and bidders are factoring that risk in. Kameswara Rao partner (energy and utilities) PricewaterhouseCoopers Many experts are also of the view that solar tariff has bottomed out and may not fall further. During 2017, solar power tariff hovered around Rs 2.4 per unit level only in auctions for capacities, where viability gap funding component was there. Earlier last year in April, the tariff was Rs 3.15 per unit in an auction for 250 MW capacities in Andhra Pradesh. Similarly, the tariff was Rs 2.97 per unit in an auction for 750 MW capacities in Madhya Pradesh in February last year. But the levelised tariff in the case was Rs 3.30 per unit. Therefore, the reasonable solar tariff on basis of data available with the ministry was around Rs 3 per unit. It fell sharply only when viability gap funding component was there....
418 Havells India eyeing Rs 100 crore business from water purifier segment in 2018-19 HAVELLS 08 Jan, 2018 Havells India is looking to emerge as a significant player in water purifier segment and eyeing Rs 100 crore business in 2018-19. The company is looking to garner at least 10 per cent market share in next 3-4 years. The company has unveiled a range of water purifiers, which it claims are capable of handling new age pollutants. Havells India is a leading FMEG company (Fast moving electrical goods) with presence across India. Its product range includes Industrial & Domestic Circuit Protection Switchgear, Cables& Wires, Motors, Fans, Power Capacitors, Luminaires for Domestic, Commercial & Industrial applications, Modular Switches etc. ...
419 Maruti planning to expand sales network for LCV ‘Super Carry’ MARUTI 08 Jan, 2018 Maruti Suzuki India is planning to expand the sales network for its Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) ‘Super Carry’ as it aims to be a significant player in the segment. Super Carry is currently being retailed through 162 new commercial outlets in 140 cities across 25 states. The company, which launched Super Carry in September 2016, is seeing good traction in the LCV segment that is dominated by players like Tata Motors and Mahindra & Mahindra. Maruti Suzuki India (formerly known as Maruti Udyog) is an automobile manufacturer in India. It provides passenger cars, utility vehicles and vans. The firm also offers pre-owned car sales, fleet management and car financing services. ...
420 Bharti Airtel inks pact with itel to launch 4G smartphones BHARTIARTL 08 Jan, 2018 Bharti Airtel has entered into agreement with device manufacturer -- itel -- to launch budget friendly 4G smartphones. The partnership, which is a part of Airtel’s ‘Mera Pehla Smartphone’ initiative, will build an ecosystem of partners to make 4G smartphones within the reach of everyone. Customers will get an attractive cash-back benefit of Rs 1500 on itel A40 4G and itel A41 smartphones, thereby, significantly reducing the effective cost of device ownership. Both smartphones will come bundled with a monthly recharge pack of Rs 169 from Airtel, offering generous data and calling benefits. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
421 Aban Offshore promoters offer $600 million one-time settlement to lenders ABAN 08 Jan, 2018 Promoters of Aban Offshore Ltd have offered to pay up to $600 million in a one-time settlement to 17 banks to which it collectively owes nearly $2 billion, two people aware of the development said. Banks continue to talk to the company, but are yet to take a final decision, the people cited above said on condition of anonymity. Aban Offshore is among the 28 companies on the Reserve Bank of India’s second list of large corporate defaulters. Banks which lent to these companies must either finalize resolution plans for them or initiate insolvency proceedings at the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). Aban Offshore is the flagship company of Aban group, and provides offshore drilling services to companies engaged in exploration and production of oil and gas. It is the largest private offshore drilling services company in India and is one of the largest in the world. The company had total outstanding debt of more than Rs12,000 crore in FY17. “The promoters have tied up with external investors to raise $600 million for the settlement and has conveyed that raising any additional capital will not be supported by the company’s current Ebitda levels, which has declined significantly since the time most of the debt was raised,” said the first of the two persons cited above. Ebitda is short for earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, an indicator of operating profitability. “The banks, meanwhile, are willing to take up to a 50% haircut which translates to around $1 billion as a potential one-time settlement,” this person added. While emails sent to Aban Offshore’s management including company’s managing director Reji Abraham remained unanswered until press time, a spokesperson for State Bank of India ( SBI), one of its lenders, said, “It is a policy of the bank not to comment upon individual accounts and its treatment”. At a consolidated level, Aban Offshore posted a net loss of Rs1,041 crore against revenue of Rs1,777.80 crore for FY17, which was down by almost 50% from Rs3,353.92 crore the year before. Significantly, while the company continues to remain Ebitda-positive (close to Rs921 crore for FY17) it paid finance costs of Rs1,090.49 crore. “The company’s revenue has declined significantly in the past few years due to declining demand for offshore drilling services due to the fall in oil prices globally,” the second person said. “The entry of Chinese drilling rig manufacturers...have further dented the market, as they also provide long-term financing to buyers with down payment as low as $20 million” the person added. Aban Offshore was jointly incorporated in 1986 by Aban Constructions Pvt. Ltd and iChiles Offshore Inc. (COI), a US-based offshore drilling company. The company and its wholly owned subsidiaries had a total of 18 assets by the end of March 2016 including 15 jack-up rigs, two drill ships and one offshore production unit, according to its latest corporate filings....
422 CIL to fund Jharia rail bypass project, bring back coal freight revenue OTHER 08 Jan, 2018 To bring back lost coal freight revenue, the ministry of railways has prepared a scheme for a bypass rail route near the 35-km line between Chandrapura and Dhanbad that was closed due to underground fire at the Jharia (Jharkhand) coalfields in June. This will be funded by government-owned Coal India, holding company of Bharat Coking Coal that operates the Jharia mines. Closure of the line meant an annual estimated loss for the railways of at least Rs 27.5 billion. RITES, the railways’ engineering arm, was asked to do the detailed project report and the Railway Board is expected to approve the proposal the coming week. The earlier line went through Jharia and was under threat of caving in due to underground fire. On an average, the route used to carry around 25 million tonnes of coal traffic a year, the annual loss of which was Rs 25 billion. The line also used to carry 12.4 million passengers a year, leading to annual loss of around Rs 2.5 billion. In addition, it carried steel and iron ore. “The bypass that we are planning is through Gomoh. The cost of diversion will be known after the RITES report,” said a government official. The Railways have sanctioned an elevated rail track costing Rs 2.5 billion at Gomoh, with two additional connections to the Matari station for smooth traffic. With the additional rail connections, the total project cost is expected to be around Rs 5 billion. “The decision to shut down the line was on the directions of the Director General of Mines Safety. According to the coal ministry, only 14 km of the 35 km line is unsafe. The plan is to bypass that stretch of 14 km. We are already running a few passenger trains till the last safe points,” he added. After the closure, the railways had diverted seven daily mail and express trains to other routes, while the remaining ones were cancelled. Officials say once the project report is ready, the East Central Zone and Dhanbad railway division will start talks with the state government for early acquisition of land and work will be taken up on priority. The railways had to shut the Dhanbad to Jharia route in 2007 for a similar reason. It is likely to be safe for operations from 2022 onwards. Only around 10 underground fires out of 80 have been extinguished since the government take over of coal mines in 1971. ...
423 Reliance Jio Cuts Prepaid Tariffs, Offers More Data RELIANCE 06 Jan, 2018 The tariff war in the world’s second-biggest telecom market shows no signs of abating. Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. will offer 50 percent more data on its one-gigabyte-a-day prepaid plans at Rs 50 less. The unlimited monthly pack (1GB daily) will now be available for Rs 149. That’s the lowest tariff in the industry, the company said. The flagship Rs 399 plan will provide extra 20 percent data and a validity of another two weeks, it said. The company will also introduce a new 1.5 GB a day pack at Rs 4 per GB. India’s telecom market was shaken up by Mukesh Ambani when he launched Reliance Jio in 2016 by offering free services for six months and followed it up with cheaper data plans. That forced its older rivals to lower tariffs and drove consolidation as revenues and profits declined. Also Read: Reliance Jio Hikes Tariff For Popular 84-Day Plan In fact, Reliance Jio’s latest tariff cuts came after rivals Bharti Airtel Ltd. and Idea Cellular Ltd. again revised their pricing. Idea Celluar launched a new Rs 93 plan which offers customers 1 GB data for 10 days. It also allows the customers to make calls of 250 minutes a day and 1,000 minutes in a week. Bharti Airtel had earlier launched a similar Rs 93 plan which, apart from other benefits, offers additional 100 SMSs a day....
424 Lupin launches Flucytosine capsules in US market LUPIN 06 Jan, 2018 Lupin has launched Flucytosine capsules, used to treat serious infections, in the American market. The company has launched its generic product in the strengths of 250 mg and 500 mg after having received approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA), Lupin said in a regulatory filing. The Mumbai-based company’s product is the generic version of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc’s Ancobon tablets.The drug is indicated for the treatment of serious infections. As per the latest IMS sales data, Flucytosine capsules have annual sales of around $48 million in the US. Lupin shares ended up by 2.38 per cent Rs. 898.40 on the BSE....
425 Energy Efficiency Services Plans Electric Vehicle Rollout In More States OTHER 06 Jan, 2018 State-backed Energy Efficiency Services Ltd. plans to rollout its electric vehicle programme in more states after rolling out the first phase of green cars in Delhi this month. EESL, which is tasked with helping the nation reduce emissions, is also the nodal agency for procuring electric cars, as the government wants to replace its entire fleet with electric vehicles by 2030. It has put up 90 charging stations in the government offices in Delhi and is seeing huge demand from Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, who are keen to roll this out, Saurabh Kumar, managing director, EESL told BloombergQuint in an interview. We will put up charging infrastructure in the second phase, i.e. by middle of February. Cars in for first phase will be rolled out by Jan 15. In the second phase—9,500 cars will have to come within six months. Saurabh Kumar, MD, EESL The company also postponed its plans to come out with an initial public offer to the fourth quarter of next financial year from the last quarter of this year....
426 RCom says not paying interest on non-convertible debentures till rejig completion RCOM 06 Jan, 2018 Debt-laden Reliance Communications (RCom) on Friday said it would not be paying interest on Non-Convertible Debentures (NCDs) till completion of its restructuring exercise. The move comes close on the heels of a mega deal announcement late last month that Reliance Jio, owned by billionaire Mukesh Ambani, will acquire the spectrum, tower, optical fiber network and other wireless assets of Reliance Communications. While the two companies have not disclosed the deal size, banking sources peg the transaction value at Rs 24,000-25,000 crore. In a regulatory filing today, RCom said: "The asset sale proceeds shall be utilised to repay company's debt including NCDs in such manner as may be decided by JLF (joint lenders forum)...company shall not pay or fix any record date for payment of interest on NCDs till completion of restructuring process." At present, the company is working "expeditiously" to complete the process and expects to close the deal in a phased manner between January and March 2018, subject to statutory approvals, it added. The RCom-Jio deal announced on December 28 (coinciding with the 85th birth anniversary of Reliance founder Dhirubhai Ambani) packs in 122.4 MHz of 4G Spectrum in the 800/900/1800/2100 MHz bands, over 43,000 towers, 1,78,000 kilometres of fiber and 248 media convergence nodes. The deal will bring an immediate relief to RCom, which is reeling under Rs 45,000 crore debt, and the company hopes to use the entire proceeds to pare its debt. Just two days before the blockbuster deal, Reliance Communications - promoted by Anil Ambani - had announced its exit from the strategic debt restructuring (SDR) and outlined an ambitious revival plan that involved zero write-offs to lenders. Disclaimer: Reliance Industries Ltd. is the sole beneficiary of Independent Media Trust which controls Network18 Media & Investments Ltd...
427 Tata Steel FY18' Q3 production down marginally at 3.24 mt TATASTEEL 06 Jan, 2018 Tata Steel's provisional India production in the Q3 period ending in December 2017 was marginally down at 3.24 million ton compared to 3.28 million ton in the corresponding quarter of 2016-17. But in the nine month period from April-December of FY 18, the company's India production was higher by 10.6 per cent at 9.23 million ton against 8.34 million tonne production in previous comparable period, a Tata Steel release said today. However, the company's European operation production in the Q3 quarter was marginally higher at 2.68 million tonnes (provisional) against 2.64 million ton in the comparable period in the FY 17, it said. The steel sales both in India and Europe operations were higher during the quarter (FY 18 Q3 period) at 3.3 million ton and 2.41 million ton respectively. The company said Tata Steel Kalinganagar successfully ramped-up to 100 percent capacity utilisation for the commercial saleable steel production. Tata Steel said it has achieved highest ever quarterly sales in automotive and special products segment with a growth of 6 percent QoQ and 26 percent YoY....
428 India Is Said to Consider 7.5% Tariff on Imported Solar Panels OTHER 05 Jan, 2018 India, the largest buyer of solar equipment from neighboring China, is considering a 7.5 percent tax on imported solar panels, according to government officials with knowledge of the situation. Such imports aren’t taxed now, but might be reclassified as motors, which are subject to the tariff, the officials said, asking not to be named until a final decision was taken. The finance ministry is considering the renewable-energy ministry’s request to tax panels imported for projects won under future solar auctions while exempting those already awarded, they said. The proposed change could imperil Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambitious goal of installing 100 gigawatts of solar energy by 2022, especially as developers have relied on low-cost equipment from China to push tariffs to among the lowest in the world. The South Asian nation bought a third of China’s $8 billion of shipments from January through September, according to BNEF research. India is planning to offer financial incentives to boost domestic manufacturing and energy security, while probing if Chinese solar-equipment makers are hurting the domestic industry by dumping inventories and driving down prices to unfair levels. Finance ministry spokesman D.S. Malik and renewable-energy ministry spokesman Rajesh Malhotra declined to comment. Costlier Power Higher global module costs have already pushed up bid rates from record lows in auctions conducted by Solar Energy Corp. of India late last year and the import tax could increase prices further, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “Power producers need not panic immediately but they will still be nervous till a final notification comes from the finance ministry exempting import duties on projects that have already been auctioned,” said New Delhi-based BNEF India research head Shantanu Jaiswal. Several solar projects faced delays and inflated costs last year after customs officials blocked more than 900 containers of panel shipments for more than a month by demanding higher import duties....
429 Bharti Airtel enters into strategic alliance with Samsung BHARTIARTL 05 Jan, 2018 Bharti Airtel has entered into strategic alliance with Samsung, India’s No. 1 smartphone and consumer electronics brand, to bring a range affordable 4G smartphone options to customers. The partnership is part of Airtel’s ‘Mera Pehla Smartphone’ initiative, under which Airtel aims to partner device manufacturers to build an open ecosystem of affordable smartphones. Four top models from Samsung’s popular Galaxy J-series range – J2 (2017), J5 Prime, J7 Prime, and J7 Pro – will be available with attractive cashback offers, bringing down the effective price of the device and making them highly affordable for customers. All devices will come bundled with Airtel’s special recharge pack of Rs 199 that offers 1GB data/day and unlimited calling to enable best-in-class experience on India’s leading smartphone network. The Rs 1,500 cashback will be disbursed to customers over 24 months. At the end of 12 months, customers who have done recharges (in any denomination of their choice) worth Rs 2,500 will be eligible for the first installment of Rs 300. They will be eligible for the second installment of Rs 1,200 provided they complete another set of recharges worth Rs 2,500 over the next 12 months. Bharti Airtel is a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations across Asia and Africa. ...
430 Motherson group to derive synergies from acquisition of MS Global India MOTHERSUMI 05 Jan, 2018 Samvardhana Motherson International Ltd (SMIL), the promoter group entity of auto component maker Motherson Sumi Systems Limited (MSSL), acquired 100% stake in MS Global India Private Limited (MSGI) from Korea based MS Group. SMIL is among the promoter entities of MSSL and owns 34.81% stake in MSSL, as per BSE data as on September 30, 2017. MSGI is a Rs3.5bn Tier 1 supplier to leading global commercial vehicle OEMs. Through its manufacturing facility in Chennai, it is currently engaged in Cabin-in-white (Pressed Sheet Metal business) and frames for chassis for Commercial Vehicles. Further, MSGI has the exclusive license to use MS Group’s leading hot stamping technology in India. Financial details of the deal are yet to be announced. The acquisition of MSGI will mark Motherson group’s foray into sheet metal parts with focus on hot stamping. These components are used in passenger vehicles (PVs) as well as Commercial Vehicles (CVs) and hence the acquisition will allow SMIL to increase content per car, which has been instrumental in helping the group produce industry beating growth rates. Despite the global automobile industry seeing mixed growth over the past few years, MSSL has made rapid strides by growing its revenues, profitability, global presence and customer base led by its “close-to-client” strategy and increasing content per car. Hence, the acquisition augurs well for the group. MSSL Chairman, Mr. Vivek Chaand Sehgal, had mentioned to the media in December 2017 that the company is closing in on two acquisitions. The acquisition of MSGI could be a step in that direction. Motherson Sumi Systems Ltd ended at Rs375.5, up by Rs1.75 or 0.47% from its previous closing of Rs373.75 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs378.7 and touched a high and low of Rs378.7 and Rs371.25 respectively. A total of 1678005 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs79,053.62cr....
431 L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering bags Rs 1,483 cr order from ONGC LT 05 Jan, 2018 L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering has secured a Rs 1,483 crore offshore contract from ONGC. "L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Larsen and Toubro, has signed an offshore contract for the 'Bassein Development 3 Well Platform and Pipeline Project' with Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) valued at approximately Rs 1,483 crore (USD 229 million)," Larsen and Toubro stated in a BSE filing today. The project, part of ONGC's strategy to jointly develop three small and marginal fields/blocks under 'Bassein Development 3 Well Platform and Pipeline Project', is scheduled to be completed by May 2019. The contract covers engineering, procurement, construction, installation and commissioning for the project. Stock of Larsen and Toubro was trading 0.39 per cent up at Rs 1,320.50 on the BSE....
432 Hindalco Is Said to Bid for $2.5 Billion Aluminum Firm Aleris HINDALCO 05 Jan, 2018 Hindalco Industries Ltd. is among potential buyers that submitted bids for U.S. aluminum producer Aleris Corp., people with knowledge of the matter said, as Indian billionaire owner Kumar Mangalam Birla moves ahead with plans to expand his overseas operations. Mumbai-listed Hindalco made a non-binding offer through its U.S. unit, Novelis Inc., and will now conduct due diligence, according to the people. A deal could value Aleris at around $2.5 billion including debt, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Ohio-based Aleris, which is owned by Oaktree Capital Group LLC and Apollo Global Management LLC, had earlier agreed to sell itself to Zhongwang USA LLC for an enterprise value of $2.3 billion. The transaction, left in limbo after U.S. officials raised national-security concerns about the Chinese-backed bidder, was called off in November after multiple extensions. Any deal could help buck the decline in overseas acquisitions by Indian companies, which fell to an eight-year low of $4.25 billion in 2017, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Novelis swung to a profit in the quarter ended Sept. 30 and raised its pretax earnings guidance for the financial year, buoyed by a rally in aluminum prices. Capacity Expansion There’s no certainty Novelis will proceed to make a binding offer for Aleris, and other bidders could emerge, the people said. A representative for Aditya Birla Group, the parent company of Hindalco, didn’t immediately reply to emailed queries. Spokesmen for Aleris and Oaktree declined to comment, while a spokesman for Apollo said he couldn’t immediately comment. Novelis President Steve Fisher said in November the company’s strong balance sheet and record free cash flow are giving it the flexibility to evaluate potential growth opportunities. As part of its strategy, the company is “always going to be evaluating the opportunities in the marketplace” in addition to organic capacity expansion, Fisher told analysts on an earnings call. Aleris makes rolled aluminum sheet products at manufacturing sites in North America, Europe and China, according to its website....
433 Global Debt Hits Record $233 Trillion But Debt-to-GDP Is Falling OTHER 05 Jan, 2018 Global debt rose to a record $233 trillion in the third quarter of 2017, more than $16 trillion higher from end-2016, according to an analysis by the Institute of International Finance. Private non-financial sector debt hit all-time highs in Canada, France, Hong Kong, South Korea, Switzerland and Turkey. At the same time, though, the ratio of debt-to-gross domestic product fell for the fourth consecutive quarter as economic growth accelerated. The ratio is now around 318 percent, 3 percentage points below a high set in the third quarter of 2016, according to the IIF. "A combination of factors including synchronized above-potential global growth, rising inflation (China, Turkey), and efforts to prevent a destabilizing build-up of debt (China, Canada) have all contributed to the decline," IIF analysts wrote in a note. Yet the debt pile could act as a brake on central banks trying to raise interest rates, given worries about the debt servicing capacity of highly indebted firms and government, the IIF analysts wrote. ...
434 Fitch Ratings Says India Will Sail Past Other Emerging Economies OTHER 05 Jan, 2018 Better labour productivity, faster growth of the working age population and ambitious structural reforms will help India outperform other emerging economies over the next five years, according to Fitch Ratings. The India economy is projected to grow at 6.7 percent per annum over the next five years – the fastest among emerging economies, the ratings agency said in a report. The forecast for India is ahead of the 5.5 percent growth estimated for China and Indonesia, which jointly ranked second highest. The estimate is based on productivity growth which is expected to step up from a “disappointing historical track record in the aftermath of recent ambitious structural reforms”, Fitch said. This projection comes after the rating agency last month cut the country’s GDP growth forecast for the current fiscal to 6.7 percent, saying the rebound was weaker than expected. It, however, noted that GDP growth will pick up in the next two years on back of gradual implementation of structural reform. Fitch’s optimism on India is driven by the country’s fast-rising population and productivity gains, as compared to other emerging economies. Reforms undertaken by the government such as the Goods and Services Tax and PSU bank recapitalisation should start to bear fruit, spurring greater efficiency in productivity, the rating agency said. Private investment should benefit from a gradual pick up in bank lending amid stepped-up efforts by the government to address the state-run banks’ capital shortage. Fitch Ratings’ Global Economic Outlook The key risks to its forecast lies in poor access to education and stagnant private investments which continue to ail the economy, the ratings agency said. This could constrain productivity and overall investment growth, it added....
435 Coal India examining feasibility to produce methanol COALINDIA 04 Jan, 2018 Coal India (CIL) is exploring the feasibility of producing methanol and other chemicals. Also, the state-run miner is exploring techno-commercial feasibility of production of methanol and other chemicals. Further, the PSU, through a joint venture with GAIL, Rashtriya Chemical Fertilizers (RCF) and Fertilizer Corporation of India (FCIL) is involved in a venture to set up a coal-based fertiliser plant at the site of the defunct Talcher unit of FCIL. Coal India is the world’s largest coal mining company. It also produces non-coking coal and coking coal of various grades for diverse applications. ...
436 Havells India: a brighter picture HAVELLS 04 Jan, 2018 Havells India Ltd’s shares have outperformed vis-à-vis the benchmark Sensex in calendar year 2017. One reason for the optimism was the expectation that the implementation of the goods and services tax would enable the shift to the organized market and thus benefit the company. The management met analysts in December and offered an insight into the future plans and the initiatives it shall take to remain ahead of the curve. The performance has been commendable so far. According to its presentation, over fiscal years 1994-2017 (FY94-17), revenue, Ebitda and profit after tax increased at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 29%, 31% and 32%, respectively. Ebitda is short for earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization. The electrical goods company is engaged in the business of manufacturing switchgears, cables, lighting and fixtures, and so on. Havells India intends to establish a meaningful presence in each product category and expand market share. The company is looking to expand its reach in the west and south regions, and increase penetration in tier-II and tier-III towns across the business units. Dealers form a key part of the distribution network for Havells India and it intends to continue expanding the width/depth of its distribution channel and also its omni-channel presence, according to Motilal Oswal Securities Ltd. “Havells is fortifying its competitive position (targeting ahead of industry growth) by focusing on technology, strengthening channel (2x retail network in two years, smaller towns) and addressing untapped markets (B2B, consumer durable, etc.), while ensuring it retains its entrepreneurship culture (independent SBUs to sustain growth),” analysts from IDFC Securities Ltd wrote in a note on 13 December. SBU is short for strategic business unit. What of the stock? “Havells has been investing in brand, distribution (retail reach), portfolio expansion and people capabilities to be growth ready and deliver 15-20% sales CAGR when the demand environment improves,” said analysts from IIFL Institutional Equities in a report on 13 December. “Rich valuations attempt to discount Havells’ ability to grow as an integrated consumer electrical player by leveraging recent acquisitions in lighting and consumer durables space,” they added. If executed as per management expectations, IIFL sees upsides to its 25% sales/17% earnings CAGR over FY18-20. Currently, the Havells India stock trades at about 42.6 times its estimated FY19 earnings, based on Bloomberg data. Valuations suggest a good portion of the good news is baked into the price....
437 HDFC to keep Rs1,575 crore from HDFC Standard Life IPO as special provision HDFCBANK 04 Jan, 2018 Housing Development and Finance Corp. Ltd (HDFC) on Wednesday announced that it will make a special provision of Rs1,575 crore, using a part of the proceeds from the initial public offering (IPO) of HDFC Standard Life Insurance. The additional provision is being made to create a buffer for any “unexpected” risks in future, India’s oldest and largest housing finance company said. The mortgage lender stated in a stock exchange notification that the firm had made Rs5,250 crore profit from the IPO of its life insurance subsidiary in November. It said the one-time gain gives it an opportunity to strengthen the balance sheet. The additional provisions over and above the regulatory requirements are being made on a voluntary basis, it added. The amount used for creating special provisions constitutes about 30% of its profit from the HDFC Life IPO. “The Corporation believes it would be prudent to utilize on-off pre-tax gains from IPO of HDFC Life to shore up the provisions and contingencies account and thereby build an additional buffer against any unexpected risks in the future,” the notification stated. At the end of the second quarter of the current fiscal, the firm was carrying Rs3,235 crore in its provisions and contingencies account, over and above the Rs2,500 crore mandated by regulations, the notification stated. According to analysts, while the additional provisioning could be a measure by the firm to strengthen its books ahead of its fund raising programme, a part of the proceeds from the IPO could also be used for creating provisions for the lender’s corporate book. “While the overall asset quality indicators remain sound, despite the small rise in non-performing assets in the current fiscal, the strong profits realized provides an opportunity to increase provisions and further strengthen its balance sheet. This would be important as it explores raising capital in the near term,” said Karthik Srinivasan, group head for financial sector ratings at Icra Ltd. To be sure, as on 30 September 2017, HDFC’s gross non-performing ratio for non-individual loans stood at 2.18% as against 2.09% in the preceding quarter. Whereas, the non-performing loan ratio for individual loans remained stable at 0.65%. The mortgage lender is also looking to raise about Rs13,000 crore to grow its business and for infusion into HDFC Bank. It will be infusing up to Rs8,500 crore in HDFC Bank and the balance will be used for growing its affordable housing business. A part of the proceeds from the fund raise will be used to venture into the health insurance space and to launch a stressed assets fund focused on real estate. Another analyst said on condition of anonymity that the lender could be making additional provisions as it plans to enter the stressed assets business and instead of showing windfall gain in one quarter, it is utilizing the proceeds to strengthen its buffer....
438 Tata Motors offers 6-years warranty for entire truck range TATAMOTORS 04 Jan, 2018 The country's largest truck and bus-maker Tata Motors announced a six-year warranty for its entire range of medium and heavy vehicles range of commercial vehicles. Tata Motors is the first auto-maker in the country to introduce a standard driveline warranty of six years on the entire M&HCV range including tractor-trailers, and multi-axel trucks & tippers," the company said in a statement. Additionally, the drivelines (engine, gearbox & rear axle) comes as a standard offer, while the warranty on the overall vehicle has been enhanced from 24 months to 36 months. Commenting on this offer, Girish Wagh, head of commercial vehicle business unit said, "the 6-year warranty is another industry first. We are pleased to offer the new warranty on our medium & heavy commercial vehicles. With this we also assure customers of greater benefits and hassle free business on availing long-term annual maintenance contracts." The six-year standard driveline warranty is based on the study of operation in lifecycle of over 20 lakh Tata trucks and tippers operating all over the country and the warranty is transferable on resale for balance period to second owner subject to vehicle transfer or hand change being intimated to Tata Motors....
439 Reliance Infrastructure gets ratings revision for bank facilities from CARE, CRISIL RELIANCE 04 Jan, 2018 Credit rating agency, CARE Ratings has revised ratings on Reliance Infrastructure’s Long Term bank facilities and Non convertible debentures to ‘A-’ Credit Watch with Developing implications from ‘A-’ Credit Watch with Negative implications and for short term bank facilities to ‘A2+’ Credit Watch with Developing implications from ‘A2+’ Credit Watch with Negative implications. Moreover, another credit rating agency, CRISIL has revised ratings watch on the company’s Long Term Non convertible debentures to ‘BBB+’ Rating Watch with Developing implications from ‘BBB+’ Rating Watch with Negative implications. The revision in ratings is reflective of the steps taken by the company for deleveraging through various divestment initiatives including the recently announced sale of the Mumbai Power business. ...
440 India Cancels $500 Million Missile Deal With Israel’s Rafael OTHER 04 Jan, 2018 Israeli arms firm Rafael has confirmed that India has cancelled a $500 million deal to develop Spike anti-tank guided missiles and expressed “regret” over the decision just ahead of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s first visit to the country. “Rafael has now received an official notification from India’s Ministry of Defence concerning the cancellation of the Spike deal,” Ishai David, a spokesman for the Rafael Advanced Defence Systems Ltd, told PTI. Spike, in use by 26 countries around the world, is said to have been selected by India after a long and rigorous process and after complying with all the defence procurement regulations. “It should be emphasised that the cancellation was made prior to the signing of the contract and despite Rafael’s compliance with all the demands,” the company said in a statement. Rafael regrets the decision and remains committed to cooperating with the Indian Ministry of Defence and to its strategy of continuing to work in India, an important market, as it has for more than two decades, to provide India with the most advanced and innovative systems. Rafael Advanced Defence Systems Statement The company did not give a reason for the cancellation of the deal. The cancellation comes days before Netanyahu's four-day visit to India starting Jan. 14 and is likely to be taken up for discussion. Rafael’s CEO would also be accompanying Netanyahu. The company recently inaugurated its facilities in Hyderabad where the project was to be executed but company sources said that it is "designed to accommodate a number of other projects Rafael is engaged in with its Indian partners". As per the original proposal, India had planned to acquire the ATGMs for the Army at a cost of $500 million. The Indian defence ministry has been strongly pushing for transfer of technology in procuring various weapons and other platforms from foreign defence majors as part of its broad policy initiative to encourage domestic defence industry. Official sources in New Delhi had earlier indicated that the proposal to acquire the missile system faced hurdles when Israeli side apparently expressed reservations in ensuring full transfer of technology as per the provisions of the 'Make in India' initiative....
441 Power Secretary Says Tariffs To Rise In Staggered Manner Over Five Years OTHER 04 Jan, 2018 Electricity tariffs will be increased in a staggered manner in the next five years as power producers upgrade plants to comply with stricter emission standards, Power Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla said. That’s after Power Minister RK Singh said yesterday that tariffs are expected to rise by 62 to 93 paise per kilowatt-hour once coal-fired power producers retrofit plants to make them environment-friendly. The plants missed the December deadline to cut emissions and the Power Ministry wants to roll out the new standards in a phased manner. Bhalla said a proposal has been presented to modify plants with four components: Desulphurisation of plants for controlling sulphur oxide emissions. Regulating suspended particulate matter emissions. Nitrogen oxide control. Conversion of the open cycle to closed cycle in plants for water flow. All the plants may not require all the components and might have one or all of them pre-installed, he said. Which means, the tariff hike estimate will vary for 400 units based on the actual cost incurred by individual plants, he said. Tariffs will return to normalcy as demand increases, which going by the current revival in the industry should stabilise soon, he said. As for the stressed power assets facing insolvency, Bhalla said state-owned NTPC Ltd. is still in the fray to buy some of those. ...
442 UFO Moviez Says ‘Excellent’ 2018 Lineup Will Trigger A Turnaround UFO 04 Jan, 2018 New movies lined up for release will ensure a strong comeback for movie distributors in the January to March quarter, after the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax impaired performance in the previous quarter, according to UFO Moviez India Ltd. "We have an excellent lineup of movies in 2018. There are movies from all three Khans coming out," Kapil Agarwal, joint managing director of UFO Moviez India told BloombergQuint in an interview. Aamir Khan starrer ‘Thugs of Hindostan', Shah Rukh Khan's 'Zero' and Salman Khan's 'Race 3' are among the movies scheduled for release in 2018. The losses from the delay in the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali-directed ‘Padmavat’, was more than compensated by the release of the Salman Khan starrer, ‘Tiger Zinda Hai’, Agarwal added. The merger between UFO Moviez and Qube Cinemas Technologies Pvt., announced in November, will be completed in the next ten months, Agarwal added....
443 RIL commissions world’s largest refinery off-gas cracker at Jamnagar RELIANCE 03 Jan, 2018 Reliance Industries (RIL) has successfully commissioned and achieved design throughput of the world’s first ever and largest Refinery Off-Gas Cracker (ROGC) complex of 1.5 MMTPA capacity along with downstream plants and utilities. The ROGC complex is a core component of RIL’s most innovative and world-scale J3 project at its integrated Refinery-Petrochemicals complex at Jamnagar. With the commissioning of ROGC complex, the largest ever expansion of RIL’s petrochemicals portfolio comes to a flawless completion. This is one of the largest capital expenditure programme globally in the sector in recent times. The ROGC complex has a unique configuration as it uses off-gases from RIL’s two refineries at Jamnagar as feedstock. This innovative approach of integration with refineries provides a sustainable cost advantage, making ROGC competitive with respect to the crackers in Middle East and North America which have feedstock cost advantage. RIL’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and 4G digital services. ...
444 Tata Power Renewable commissions 50 mw DCR solar plant TATAPOWER 03 Jan, 2018 Tata Power arm Tata Power Renewable Energy Ltd (TPREL) today commissioned its 50 mw DCR solar plant at Pavagada Solar Park in Karnataka. The project was bagged by the company on April 4, 2016, under the National Solar Mission Phase-II Batch-II Tranche-I State Specific Bundling Scheme. With this development, The TPREL's total installed operating capacity now stands at 1664 MW, the company said in a statement. The 50 MW solar plants have been built over 253 acres. Sale of power from the solar plant has been tied up under a 25- year Power Purchase Agreement with NTPC Ltd at a tariff of Rs. 4.84 per unit. Rahul Shah, CEO, Tata Power Renewable Energy Ltd, said, "We prefer development opportunities in solar parks as land and evacuation are provided, and we can focus on the project. We are extremely proud of this development and we continue to seek potential areas across India and in select International markets through organic and inorganic opportunities." The TPREL recently commissioned 25 MW solar plant in Charanka, Gujarat Solar Park, Gujarat,30 MW solar plant in Palaswade in Maharashtra and 100 MW Solar plant at Pavagada Solar park in Karnataka. The Tata Power's vision is to have 35-40 per cent of the Company's total generation capacity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2025. Tata Power's renewable energy capacity this year crossed 2000 MW and green generation portfolio crossed the 3000 MW mark....
445 Bajaj Auto Clocks Highest Sales Growth In Seven Years BAJAJ-AUTO 03 Jan, 2018 Bajaj Auto Ltd. clocked its highest sales growth in seven years and fifth straight increase for the month of December, driven by a healthy pick up in exports. The two- and three-wheeler maker sold 2.92 lakh units last month, an increase of 30 percent from the year-ago period, the Pune-based company said today. Prior to this, the company clocked sales growth of 32.2 percent year-on-year in October 2010. Overall motorcycles sales rose 13 percent year-on-year to 2.28 lakh units. Motorcycle sales in the domestic market rose 6 percent. Bajaj Auto was able to de-stock inventory in December. We expect market share to improve in the current quarter on the back of two motorcycles to be launched soon under ‘Discover’ brand. Overall Exports Outperform Bajaj Auto’s exports outpaced domestic sales on an overall basis, led by the firmness in oil and commodity prices, Ravikumar told BloombergQuint in an interview. The automaker exported 1.43 lakh vehicles last month, an increase of 35 percent from the corresponding month in 2016. That compares with the local market sales growth of 25 percent. The company exported 1.15 lakh motorcycles in December, an increase of 20 percent from the sales closed in December 2016. Ravikumar expects to export about 1.5 lakh units per month going forward. Shares of the automaker rose as much as 1.8 percent to Rs 3,348 apiece on the bourses in early trade. This compared to 0.1 percent advance in the S&P BSE Auto Index....
446 L&T Wins Rs 2,100 Crore Contracts From HPCL, Reliance Industries LT 02 Jan, 2018 Infrastructure major Larsen & Toubro today said it has won a Rs 2,100 crore contract from Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd. and Reliance Industries. L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering, a wholly owned subsidiary of L&T, has secured a major EPC (engineering, procurement, construction) contract for crude distillation and vacuum distillation unit (CDU and VDU) from HPCL, Visakhapatnam Refinery, and an extension to an ongoing contract for Reliance Industries, Jamnagar, both adding to approximately 2,100 crore, L&T said in a statement. The 9 MMTPA CDU & VDU project is a part of HPCL's Visakh Refinery Modernisation Project (VRMP) and involves engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning, it said. The order reinforces LTHE's unique capability to deliver 'design to build' engineering and construction solutions across the hydrocarbon spectrum, it added. LTHE has been serving the onshore hydrocarbon sector since early 1990s. "The company's track record includes successful completion of several challenging projects for domestic and international clients," the statement said. Larsen & Toubro is Indian multinational firm engaged in technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services with over $17 billion in revenue....
447 SRF commissions, capitalizes Chloromethanes Plant at Dahej SRF 02 Jan, 2018 SRF has commissioned and capitalized the Chloromethanes Plant located at Chemical Complex in Dahej, Gujarat on December 31, 2017. The company had got approval for setting up of Chloromethanes Plant at Dahej with a capacity of 40,000 TPA in August 2016. SRF is a leader in refrigerants, engineering plastics and industrial yarns in India. The company also manufactures polyester films and fluoro specialties. Besides India, SRF has a presence in Dubai, South Africa and Thailand. ...
448 GAIL commissions India's second largest rooftop solar plant GAIL 02 Jan, 2018 State-owned gas utility GAIL India Limited today said it has commissioned the country's second-largest rooftop solar power plant. The firm has installed a 5.76 MWp (Mega Watt peak) solar plant at its petrochemical complex at Pata in Uttar Pradesh, a company statement said. The plant over the roofs of warehouses covers a total area of 65,000 square meters. "With an expected PLF of around 15 percent annually, over 79 lakh KWh (or units) of electricity is targeted to be generated for captive use of India's largest gas-based petrochemcials plant," it said. Tata Power Solar had in December 2015 commissioned a 12 MW solar rooftop project in Amritsar, which produces more than 150 lakh units of power annually and offset over 19,000 tonne of carbon emissions every year. India is planning to have 40 GW of rooftop photovoltaics (PV) by 2022. This is part of its target of having 175 GW of non-hydro renewables capacity by 2022 (made up of 60 GW onshore wind, 60 GW utility-scale solar, 10 GW bio-energy, 5 GW small hydro and 40 GW rooftop solar). It currently has 60 GW of renewable energy capacity. GAIL Chairman and Managing Director B C Tripathi said the company as a marketer of benign natural gas is thrilled to integrate captive solar PV towards achieving lower carbon footprint at its installations. Captive solar power initiative of GAIL will reduce carbon emissions by 6,300 tonnes per annum and help India achieve climate goals, the statement said. "GAIL's solar rooftop project is also a step under 'Make in India' with Indian vendors entrusted for manufacture, supply and execution."...
449 Expect growth in 3-wheelers to sustain for next 4-5 months: Bajaj Auto BAJAJ-AUTO 02 Jan, 2018 Bajaj Auto gains after posting strong auto sales for December. Three-wheeler sales have hit a record this time around. In an interview with CNBC-TV18, S Ravikumar, President - Business Development of Bajaj Auto spoke about the latest happenings in his company and sector. This quarter has been great for three-wheeler segment both domestic and exports. We have done almost about 118 percent growth in domestic and 200 percent growth in exports, he said. Going forward, this type of a growth rate will sustain at least for the next 4-5 months, he added. According to him, export numbers are much more steadier. Speaking about new product launches, he said we have already started production in our plants, both Waluj as well as the Pantnagar plant. We are going to unleash two Discovers in the market, production has already started in December, said Ravikumar. We are quite sure that they are not going to cannibalise any of our models, we are going to hit into the belly of the market and in addition, this quarter we will have the full quarter benefit of this addition and going forward some more product action is going to be in place, he further mentioned. We are quite confident that we will deliver the type of numbers in domestic that we alluded to in the past, he said....
450 India’s Manufacturing Activity Hits 5-Year High In December OTHER 02 Jan, 2018 India's manufacturing activity grew at the strongest pace since December 2012, showing signs of recovery after the twin shocks of demonetisation and the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST). The Nikkei India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index rose to 54.7 in December compared to 52.6 in November, according to a statement by IHS Markit, which compiles the index. A reading below 50 indicates contraction and a number above it signals expansion. India’s manufacturing PMI has remained in expansion zone for most of this fiscal, with the exception of a contraction reported in July. In December, the rise in manufacturing activity was driven by a sharp uptick in output and new orders. Output rose at its fastest pace since December 2012, while new orders increased at their quickest since October 2016. Demand conditions improved in both domestic and international markets. Job creation also increased at the quickest pace since more than five years in response to the growing business activity, the release said. Challenges remain as the economy adjusts to recent shocks, but the overall upturn was robust compared to the trend observed for the survey history. This outlook was shared by the manufacturing community as sentiment picked-up to the strongest in three months amid expected improvements in market conditions over the next 12 months. Aashna Dodhia, Economist, IHSMarkit The strong pick-up in manufacturing activity comes at the close of a turbulent year for the Indian economy. The impact of demonetisation and the GST has led to volatility across business segments. Even now, “the sector continues to face some turbulence as delayed customer payments contributed to greater volumes of outstanding work,” Dodhia wrote in the press statement accompanying the data release. Other economic indicators have also suggested some revival of strength in industry, albeit on a low base. Growth in the eight core sectors rose to 6.8 percent in November compared to 3.2 percent in November last year. As growth is picking up, price pressures are also starting to rise. Input cost inflation accelerated to the strongest since April, said IHS Markit. Firms raised their output charges for the fifth month straight. However, despite a 10-month high, inflation was modest and weaker than the long-run series average, the report noted....
451 Indian Oil looks to supply LPG to northeastern states via Bangladesh IOC 01 Jan, 2018 State-owned Indian Oil Corp. Ltd is planning to adopt a new way of supplying cooking gas to the far flung northeastern states by first exporting it to Bangladesh in a move that will drastically cut the refiner’s freight cost and help in integrating the energy markets in the two Asian nations, chairman Sanjiv Singh said. The idea is to ship liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) either from Paradip port in Odisha or from the Haldia port in West Bengal to the Chittagong port in Bangladesh from where it could be moved by road before further exporting to bordering Indian states like Tripura, Assam and Meghalaya. This will do away with the need for transporting LPG that India imports in the eastern coast through a long-winding route covering the states of Bihar and Assam along what is referred to as the “chicken neck” to states further in the East. “We are in advanced stages of talks with some of the Bangladesh companies for LPG export to Bangladesh for re-export to North East of India. This should happen soon,” said Singh. It is expected to improve LPG supply in northeast and boost the Bangladesh economy. “The efficiency gain will be huge. It is a win-win for everyone,” said Singh, adding that Chittagong has LPG import terminals, from where, Tripura is not far. The NDA government is on a drive to boost consumption of the clean cooking fuel, which will improve women’s health by replacing other polluting fuels and reduce kerosene consumption. The drive has seen LPG imports and consumption go up sharply. India has been pursuing closer ties in the energy sector with Bangladesh helping the markets to integrate. Indian Oil Corp. is also exploring long term deals with Bangladesh companies for supplying LPG and other petroleum products. A plan for setting up a large LPG import terminal in partnership with local companies, allowing large vessels to arrive in the Chittagong port, is also on the drawing board. India is currently investing heavily in energy infrastructure to develop its long neglected eastern part. Long-distance gas pipelines as well as city gas distribution network are part of this. Bangladesh will be an ideal partner for expanding this network to the northeast region. India’s ONGC Tripura Power Co. (OTPC) is already exporting power from Tripura to Bangladesh. “I think there is a lot of synergy that is possible (between the two nations), said Singh....
452 Britannia enters chocolate category, competes with Nestle’s Kit Kat BRITANNIA 01 Jan, 2018 Leading biscuit manufacturer, Britannia Industries Limited (Britannia), has entered into chocolate segment through chocolate wafers. The company has extended its Pure Magic biscuit brand to chocolate wafers. Britannia Industries Limited (Britannia) is a FMCG company with major presence in biscuits (35% value market share, 85% contribution to consolidated revenues). It has also forayed into dairy products and bakery items, where it has built a significant presence. The market for biscuits is estimated at Rs27,000cr in India, as per Nielsen. Britannia has set forth its twin objectives of entering new product categories and new geographies to become a total foods company catering to confectionary requirements in India and abroad. Britannia Industries Ltd is currently trading at Rs4,723.35, up by Rs7.6 or 0.16% from its previous closing of Rs4,715.75 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs4,715 and has touched a high and low of Rs4,746.45 and Rs4,715 respectively. So far 4,802 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs56,616.89cr....
453 SAIL mulling to bid for stressed assets of Essar Steel, Bhushan Steel SAIL 01 Jan, 2018 Steel Authority of India (SAIL) is mulling to bid for the stressed assets of Essar Steel and Bhushan Steel that are facing insolvency proceedings. In this regard, a team of SAIL has visited the units of Essar Steel and Bhushan Steel almost 20 days back to assess how are units and to evaluate whether to bid for the units or not. Essar Steel was among the initial 12 companies identified by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for insolvency proceedings. SAIL is India’s largest steel producing company. The company is among the five Maharatnas of the country’s Central Public Sector Enterprises. The company has five integrated steel plants, three special plants, and one subsidiary in different parts of the country. ...
454 RCom buyout spells synergy benefits, big savings for Jio RCOM 30 Dec, 2017 Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio Infocomm is likely to harvest synergy gains, reduced operating expenses and higher savings in tower rentals with the acquisition of the wireless telecom assets of Reliance Communications (RCom), which surged to a 52-week intraday high on Friday. Sources have pegged the Jio-RCom all-cash deal size at roughly Rs 24,000 crore, which will help the Anil Ambani company repay part of its Rs 45,000 crore debt. While the two companies didn't specify the deal value, analysts said Jio possibly paid a fair value for RCom's wireless infrastructure assets, which they estimate are worth between Rs 24,000 crore and Rs 29,000 crore. US brokerage Jefferies said spectrum would form the bulk of the estimated fair value at Rs 15,000 crore, with towers (Rs 7,000-9,000 crore) and optic fibre cable (Rs 3,000-5,000 crore) making up the rest. Experts see RIL-owned Jio saving on tower rentals going forward. As one of the largest tenants of RCom's towers, they estimate Jio currently pays Rs 1,500-1,600 crore as annual rental. Brokerage Morgan Stanley said the deal will lead to synergies for Reliance IndustriesBSE -0.36 % Ltd's telecom business, which currently has "lease/sharing arrangements with RCom" for some of its existing infrastructure, including spectrum towers and optic fibre backbone. The deal, Morgan Stanley said, would lower RILBSE -0.36 %'s operating expenses and reduce the overhang on telecom growth capital expenditure, although free cash flow (FCF) generation could be slightly delayed. Jefferies said the RCom airwaves would bolster Jio's 4G LTE coverage and "allow it to have access to 30% of industry 4G spectrum". Jio signed an agreement to buy RCom's wireless infrastructure assets, including spectrum, towers, optic fibre cable network and media convergence nodes, in deals likely to be completed between January and March 2018, it was announced on Thursday. RCom still has about 140 MHz of unsold spectrum across the 1800 MHz and 850 MHz bands. RCom rallied for the fourth straight session on Friday, closing 17% higher at Rs 36.22 on the BSE, having soared nearly 35% to Rs 41.77, its 52-week high. RCom shot up 122% in four days, adding Rs 5,506.76 crore to its market capitalisation. This led to the promoter group firm, Reliance Innoventures Private Ltd., asking the telco's lenders and security trustees to release 330 million pledged promoter shares, or 11.93% of the total. RIL, however, fell 0.36% to close at Rs 921.05. While the acquisition should lower costs for Jio, it could raise RIL's balance sheet leverage by 10-12% in the near term while earnings per share would be diluted by nearly 3% in FY 2020, analysts said. TIMING SIGNIFICANT Experts said the timing of the deal was significant, coming amid consolidation and price wars. They see market leader Bharti Airtel as best equipped to combat Jio by virtue of its pan-India data network. In the past few months, the Sunil Mittal-led telco has been fortifying its 4G data spectrum holdings with acquisitions of the wireless business of Telenor India and Tata Teleservices. The Idea-Vodafone mega merger is widely expected to close as early as next March, with the combined entity expected to pose stronger competition to Jio and Airtel. To be sure, analysts at Jefferies said, "the upside may be limited" for Jio as it already has access to RCom's towers/fibre "on favourable terms", unless "it pays much less than the fair value, which we estimate in the Rs 24,000-29,000 crore" range. Moody's Investors Service expects RIL to pay less than Rs 25,000 crore for RCom's telecom assets as it is not buying the real estate, which was part the Anil Ambani-led telco's plans to reduce debt by the same quantum. The global rating agency said acquisition of RCom's wireless telecom assets would have "no impact on RIL's Baa2 ratings". However, the acquisition, Moody's said, "could reduce the cushion under RIL's rating for further increase in its borrowings," especially if the company does not reduce its planned capital expenditure for its telecom business. Morgan Stanley expects the deal could potentially "raise RIL's net debt by 10-12% and likely be EPS dilutive by 1.3% on its FY19-20 estimates". Somshankar Sinha, equity analyst, Jefferies India, added that with expectations for Jio "elevated, we view risk reward as unfavourable also noting that refining, FCF may lag expectations in FY19-21". The industry consolidation should strengthen Jio's pricing power, evidence of which was seen in two recently announced tariff plans that raised effective tariffs by 20%, according to Morgan Stanley. ...
455 Aarti Industries signs Rs10,000-crore multi-year contract AARTIIND 30 Dec, 2017 Speciality chemical firm Aarti Industries’ Ltd on Friday said it has signed a Rs10,000-crore multi- year exclusive supply contract with a global chemical conglomerate. “This contract entails supply of a high value speciality chemical intermediate over a period of 20 years,” the company said in a BSE filing. Aarti Industries said it will invest $35-40 million to set up a dedicated large-scale manufacturing facility for the production of this speciality chemical intermediate. “As a part of this contract terms, the customer shall provide $42 million as an advance to the company in instalments, which shall be adjusted against supplies in future,” the company added. Aarti Industries is India’s leading producer of Benzene—based basic and intermediate chemicals. It is one of the leading suppliers of dyes, pigments, agro-chemicals, pharmaceuticals and rubber chemicals to global manufacturers. At 2.20pm, shares of the company were trading higher by 6.83% at Rs1,141.60 on BSE....
456 India’s TCS Faces U.S. Trial in Anti-American Bias Case TCS 29 Dec, 2017 India’s Tata Consultancy Services Ltd. will have to defend itself at a U.S. trial over claims that it’s biased against American workers. A federal judge in Oakland, California, on Wednesday rejected a request from the information technology outsourcing giant to dismiss a 2015 lawsuit accusing it of violating anti-discrimination laws by favoring South Asians. In a further setback for the company, the judge also expanded the case into a class action on behalf of American workers who lost their jobs at TCS offices in the U.S. because they hadn’t been assigned to any of its clients. A TCS representative declined to comment on the ruling. While the case predates President Donald Trump’s election, its objective mirrors one of his campaign promises: to reduce the use of overseas workers in U.S. jobs. TCS, Asia’s largest software maker, and Infosys Ltd., a rival Indian outsourcing firm facing a similar lawsuit in Milwaukee, have both been squeezed by the Trump administration to hire more Americans on U.S. soil. In April, Trump signed an executive order aimed at overhauling the work-visa programs companies use to bring overseas workers to the U.S. The next month, Infosys, which employs about 200,000 people around the world, said it planned to hire 10,000 Americans over the next two years. The lawsuit against TCS was filed in 2015 by a white IT worker who claimed he was subject to “substantial anti-American sentiment” within the company and was ultimately terminated within 20 months despite having almost 20 years of experience in the field. He was later replaced as the lead plaintiff by two other men. One, Brian Buchanan, said he worked at Southern California Edison for 28 years when the company outsourced the bulk of its IT work to TCS. He was among 400 people terminated, but said he was asked to stay on for a few months to train the Indian TCS employees that were replacing him. Buchanan claims that at a job fair organized for the employees losing their jobs, the South Asian TCS regional manager was dismissive of his interest in a position. TCS argued Buchanan’s experience doesn’t prove he was a victim of bias. He has “no idea” whether the application process was discriminatory because he didn’t attend any of the town hall meetings he was invited to during the Edison transition to learn about open positions with TCS and how to apply for them -- and he didn’t apply for a specific job, the company said in a court filing. The four workers who sued Infosys over similar allegations four years ago in Milwaukee are represented by the same law firm that filed the TCS suit. The TCS case is Heldt v. Tata Consultancy Services Ltd., 15-cv-01696, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (Oakland). ...
457 CRISIL welcomes SEBI’s amendments to strengthen CRA industry CRISIL 29 Dec, 2017 CRISIL has welcomed the Securities and Exchange Board of India’s (SEBI) amendments to the regulations on credit rating agencies (CRAs) and companies with listed debt, which will raise industry standards and deepen the corporate bond market in India. The proposed guidelines raise the bar on the eligibility to set up a CRA and stipulate greater disclosure for issuers on their financial performance. Higher minimum net worth requirements for CRAs and increased shareholding requirements along with minimum holding period for promoters of CRAs will ensure that only serious and credible players with long-term perspective enter the field. CRISIL is an agile and innovative, global analytics company driven by its mission of making markets function better. ...
458 Tata Global Beverages sells stake in JV for ?120 cr TATAGLOBAL 29 Dec, 2017 Tata Global Beverages (TGBL) has sold its stake in joint venture firm Estate Management Services Private Limited (EMSPL) for a consideration of ?120 crore. The company said it has divested stake as part of its overall strategy to focus on branded business in key geographies. “...the company, vide a share sale and purchase agreement, amongst, Sunshine Holdings PLC, Estate Management Services Private Ltd (EMSPL) and the company, dated December 28, 2017, divested its holdings of 1,20,78,406 shares in its joint venture, EMPSL, constituting 31.85 per cent of the issued capital of EMSPL for a consideration of about Rs. 120 crore,” TGBL said in a BSE filing. “Consequently, EMSPL has ceased to become an associate of the company effective December 28, 2017,” it added. Shares of TGBL settled 0.52 per cent higher at ?306.60 on the BSE. EMSPL, Sri Lanka is the holding company for Watawala Plantations Ltd. Watawala is one of the largest producers of tea and palm oil in Sri Lanka. Last month, TGBL completed the sale of two of its subsidiaries in Russia — Sunty and Teatrade — for 375 million roubles (about ?41 crore). TGBL in August announced sale of its business in Russia as part of restructuring operations in that country....
459 Lupin receives USFDA nod for Calcipotriene Topical Solution, generic of Dovonex Scalp solution LUPIN 29 Dec, 2017 Lupin, through its filing on BSE, has informed that it has received final approval for its Calcipotriene Topical Solution, 0.005% (Scalp Solution) from the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) to market a generic version of Dovonex Scalp Solution, 0.005% of Leo Pharmaceutical Products Ltd. Lupin’s Calcipotriene Topical Solution, 0.005% (Scalp Solution) is the AT rated generic equivalent of Leo Pharmaceutical Products Ltd’s Dovonex Scalp Solution, 0.005%. It is indicated for the topical treatment of chronic, moderately severe psoriasis of the scalp. Calcipotriene Topical Solution, 0.005% (Scalp Solution) had annual sales of approximately USD 5.9 million in the US (IMS MAT October 2017). The stock is also in focus as Nostrum gets USFDA nod for generic drug Fortamet i.e. Metformin Hydrochloride, which is used as an oral diabetes medicine. Fortamet is one of the largest volume generic drug in Lupin’s generic drug portfolio. Nostrum’s Fortamet drug approval will have an impact on the volumes and market share of Lupin for Fortamet in US. The generic drug business accounts for 94% of total US revenues for the company. Lupin is a pharmaceutical company developing and delivering a wide range of branded & generic formulations, biotechnology products and APIs globally. The company is a significant player in the Cardiovascular, Diabetology, Asthma, Pediatric, CNS, GI, Anti-Infective and NSAID space and holds global leadership position in the Anti-TB segment. Lupin earns 47% from its US business. Chronic and semi-chronic therapy contributes 88% to revenue, of which chronic contributes 65% of total revenue in the domestic market. For the financial year ended 31st March, 2017, Lupin’s consolidated sales and net profit stood at Rs17,119cr and Rs2,557cr respectively. Lupin Ltd is currently trading at Rs899.75, up by Rs18.9 or 2.15% from its previous closing of Rs880.85 on the BSE....
460 IOC to commence production of biomass-based ethanol IOC 29 Dec, 2017 Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) would initiate production of second generation ethanol by utilizing crop residues and other biomass as feedstock at village Baoli in Panipat district of Haryana. The capacity of proposed plant would be 100 kilo litre of ethanol per day. The company has proposed to procure over two lakh tonne of rice straw that is total production of four districts of Karnal, Panipat, Sonipat and Kurukshetra. IOC is the largest enterprise in the country and the foremost ranked Fortune Global 500 Company in India and has presence in the complete hydrocarbon value chain from downstream refining & marketing, pipeline transportation, Petrochemicals, E&P and Gas Marketing. ...
461 Tata Steel ramping up production at Khondbond iron ore mine in OdishaTata Steel ramping up production at Khondbond iron ore mine in Odisha TATASTEEL 28 Dec, 2017 Tata Steel Ltd has appointed a bunch of domestic investment banks to manage its proposed rights issue of about $2 billion (Rs12,800 crore), three people aware of the development said. On 19 December, the steel maker’s board had approved the plan to raise up to Rs12,800 crore. “Tata Steel has appointed domestic investment banks Axis Capital, ICICI Securities, Kotak Mahindra Capital and SBI Capital Markets Ltd to manage the $2 billion rights issue,” said the first of three people cited above, requesting anonymity, as he is not authorized to speak to reporters. According to the second person cited above, the company is looking to launch the deal in the coming quarter, as early as January. He, too, requested anonymity. “They are moving fast on the transaction and are targeting to raise the funds in the next quarter. The deal could be launched as early as before end of January. Usually all Tata deals are underwritten by the bankers and that could be one of the reasons for the company wanting to work with these merchant bankers as they are all backed by respective group banks,” he said. Emails sent to Axis Capital, ICICI Securities and Kotak Mahindra Capital were not answered. SBI Capital declined to comment. “The Tata Steel Board reviews the company’s financing strategy from time to time as part of its overall growth strategy. In keeping with the strategic decisions being implemented with respect to its future growth strategy, the company also implements various long term financing plans. The company also engages with its lenders and investors to evaluate financing and refinancing transactions in line with business requirements,” Tata Steel said in an email response. The approval to the rights issue by the board is part of the financing strategy to de-leverage and for general corporate purposes, the email added. “For the purpose of the issue, the Board authorized the Executive Committee of the Board to decide the structure, terms and conditions of the issue including the instrument options, rights entitlement ratio, issue price, record date, timing of issue and other related matters. The company will make appropriate disclosures regarding this at an appropriate time,” it added. As of 30 September, Tata Steel’s gross debt stood at Rs90,259 crore. In its 19 December board meeting, the company also approved an expansion of 5 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) for its Kalinganagar plant, which currently has a capacity of 13Mtpa. The proposed expansion will cost the company Rs23,500 crore, which will be funded through a mix of debt and equity. The expansion is expected to meet the requirements of automotive, general engineering and other value added segments, the company said in its stock exchange filings. The steel maker is also planning to raise funds from the overseas debt market. On Tuesday, Bloomberg reported that Tata Steel Ltd has sounded out banks about raising the equivalent of $5.1 billion through loan facilities and a bond issue to help refinance debt. The Indian steel maker plans a $2.15 billion six-year syndicated facility to refinance loans in the books of units, TS Global Holdings Pte. and NatSteel Asia Pte., Bloomberg reported. A separate €2.5 billion borrowing is planned to refinance debt remaining after the transfer of Tata Steel Europe Ltd’s existing obligations into its proposed joint venture with Germany’s Thyssenkrupp AG. The new fundraising will be backed by a letter of comfort from Tata Steel, the report said. The last Tata group company to raise equity capital through a rights issue was Tata Motors Ltd. In 2015, the auto maker raised around Rs9,000 crore through a rights issue which was subscribed 1.21 times....
462 L&T’s construction arm bags orders worth Rs 1,600 crore LT 28 Dec, 2017 Larsen & Toubro’s (L&T) construction arm -- L&T Construction -- has bagged orders worth Rs 1,600 crore under the Power Transmission & Distribution Business. The business has secured an order from the Saudi Electricity Company for construction of 380kV Double Circuit Overhead Transmission Line between Qassim - 2 and Madina East Bulk Supply Point Substations. This is one of the longest lines in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, with a route length of more than 400Km. In UAE, orders have been won for Design, Supply, Installation, Testing and Commissioning of three 132/11kV Substations and associated works, one each from Dubai Electricity & Water Authority, Shamal Development LLC and Meraas Development LLC. Besides, in the domestic market, the business has secured a major order for EPC construction of 250MW (AC) Solar Plant in Rewa district of Madhya Pradesh. Additional orders have also been received from various ongoing jobs of the business. Larsen & Toubro (L&T) is a major technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services conglomerate, with global operations. ...
463 Sun Pharma’s US eye drug filing reason to cheer but cautiously SUNPHARMA 28 Dec, 2017 Is this when things begin to look up for Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd? It’s been a long winter for its shares as the chart alongside will attest to. But news that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted a new drug application by a Sun Pharma subsidiary sent the stock soaring by 6.9%, the highest intraday jump since 6 April 2015, and its shares went back to the levels last seen in July. The first question one is tempted to ask is if the rise in its shares is overdone, assuming all of that increase is attributable to the filing alone. The filing was due in the third quarter and Sun Pharma had said as much during its previous conference call, after the September quarter results. But yes, that the USFDA has accepted its filing in a way vindicates the acquisition of Ocular Technologies, which brought this under-development product into its fold. It also shows that the subsequent research work that Sun Pharma has done on the product, to get it on the FDA’s table has paid off. In sum, the acceptance of this filing is a pat on its back on the research front. Of course, there is some way before this product makes it to the market and the company has indicated it will work with the regulator over the coming months to make that happen. Still, the probability that this product will hit the market has improved. What can happen to Sun Pharma’s US revenue if it gets final approval? Seciera (OTX-01) is a product to treat dry eye disease, which is estimated to be a $5 billion market globally. The US would be a main market in terms of revenue, and if it gets approval, that will smoothen the way for its entry elsewhere. Among other things, Seciera is said to act faster compared to Allergan’s Restasis, the blockbuster drug prescribed for dry eye condition. Sun Pharma will be pitching Seciera as an alternative treatment for this condition. The uncertainty on whether the filing will be accepted is over now. What remains is the state of the market when it launches. Some uncertainty has developed on this front. Allergan had lost patent litigation over Restasis, potentially opening the door for a generic launch. When the impact of this development was raised by an analyst, in a Sun Pharma conference call after its September quarter results, managing director Dilip Shanghvi said that the litigation has still some way to go. But he did say that generic competition to Restasis could affect how much Sun Pharma could charge for the drug. But generic competition could also see Allergan withdraw promotional support for Restasis and make it easier for Sun Pharma to market Seciera. Thus, the filing itself is a good development but external factors could affect how much Sun Pharma benefits if it succeeds in getting the final approval. While the development is one to cheer, it might be better to hold back some for later. For now, it’s back to watching for positive regulatory developments on the plant inspection front, which can potentially give a fillip to Sun Pharma’s US market growth....
464 FinMin may impose LTCG tax on equity investments in Budget 2018-19 OTHER 28 Dec, 2017 Buoyant capital markets may prompt the ministry of finance to impose long-term capital gains (LTCG) tax on equity investments in Budget 2018-19, as per a report in Hindu BusinessLine. The ministry is also considering to do away with the distinction between tax on long-term and short-term capital gains as proposed in the re-drafted direct tax code (DTC) framework, 2009. Further, increasing the holding period for long-term exemption to three years from one year is also being considered. With LTCG, the government wants to leverage the stock market buoyancy to fine-tune the capital gains tax structure. The government believes that it will lower tax avoidance using the exchange platform and will bring parity between excessive speculation and investment. According to BSE, the government is losing an estimated Rs.490 billion in taxes from LTCG exemption....
465 Glenmark receives ANDA approval for Norethindrone Acetate, Ethinyl Estradiol Tablets GLENMARK 27 Dec, 2017 Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc., USA (Glenmark) has been granted final approval by the United States Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for Norethindrone Acetate and Ethinyl Estradiol Tablets USP and Ferrous Fumarate Tablets, 1 mg/20 mcg, the generic version of Minastrin 24 Fe Tablets, of Allergan Pharmaceuticals International. According to IQVIA sales data for the 12 month period ending October 2017, the Minastrin 24 Fe Tablets market achieved annual sales of approximately $337.0 million. Glenmark’s current portfolio consists of 130 products authorized for distribution in the US marketplace and 58 ANDA’s pending approval with the USFDA. In addition to these internal filings, Glenmark continues to identify and explore external development partnerships to supplement and accelerate the growth of its existing pipeline and portfolio. ...
466 RCom announces debt revival plan, ropes in new investor RCOM 27 Dec, 2017 Crippled Reliance Communications (RCom) announced yet another debt revival plan on Tuesday claiming full debt resolution by March but without involving any conversion of debt into equity and exiting the SDR framework, apart from coming on-board of a strategic investor. But the company did not name the new investor. Announcing the resolution plan, company Chairman Anil Ambani told reporters that the new plan has the support of a Chinese lender that had dragged it to the NCLT for dues running into $1.8 billion, and would see RCom bringing down its mountain of debt by Rs. 25,000 crore. RCom stock rallied 35 per cent on the BSE to Rs. 22.01 per cent after the announcement. The company has a debt over Rs. 44,000 crore. DEBT RESOLUTION PLAN Debt resolution involves Reliance Communications exiting SDR framework with no conversion of debt into equity and zero write-off by lenders, Ambani said, adding he expects full closure by March 2018. He said the deal involved an eight-stage asset monetisation process under an oversight committee headed by former RBI deputy governor S S Mundra with members from Trai and the whole process will be completed in 40 days flat. The proceeds from asset monetisation will be used only to pay back the lenders, including China Development Bank with whom the company sealed an out-of court settlement last evening in Beijing. On the no hair-cut for lenders, he said the new plan involves zero equity conversion for lenders and bond holders. The debt resolution also involves part transfer of spectrum installments, Ambani said. It can be noted that 31 lenders led by SBI had met over the weekend. Late last month, Reliance Communications had presented what it called a ‘no- loan write-off’ plan where lenders are to convert Rs. 7,000 crore of debt into equity. The ‘no-loan write-off’ plan also involves repaying of up to Rs. 17,000 crore loans out of proceeds from monetisation of spectrum, tower and fibre assets....
467 Tata Steel Is Said to Seek $5.1 Billion to Help Refinance Debt TATASTEEL 27 Dec, 2017 Tata Steel Ltd. has sounded out banks about raising the equivalent of $5.1 billion through loan facilities and a bond issue to help refinance debt, according to people familiar with the matter. The Indian steelmaker plans a $2.15 billion six-year syndicated facility to refinance loans in the books of units, TS Global Holdings Pte. and NatSteel Asia Pte., said the people, who are not authorized to speak publicly and asked not to be identified. Tata Steel’s spokesman declined to comment on the planned financing. The new borrowing will mark Tata Steel’s return to the international loan markets for the first time since the middle of 2016 as it sharpens its focus on the Indian market after selling unprofitable assets in the U.K. The company said last week it plans to raise as much as 128 billion rupees ($2 billion) in a rights offer to add capacity in India as well as to repay debt. A separate 2.5 billion-euro borrowing is planned to refinance debt remaining after the transfer of Tata Steel Europe Ltd.’s existing obligations into its proposed joint venture with Germany’s Thyssenkrupp AG. The new fundraising will be backed by a letter of comfort from Tata Steel....
468 Sun Pharma announces US FDA acceptance of new drug application SUNPHARMA 27 Dec, 2017 Sun Pharma announced that the US FDA has accepted a new drug application (NDA) filed by its wholly owned subsidiary, for OTX-101 (cyclosporine A, ophthalmic solution) 0.09%, a novel nanomicellar formulation of cyclosporine A 0.09% in a clear, preservative-free aqueous solution. OTX-101 is now under review for approval by the US FDA, marking an important developmental milestone for Sun Pharma’s Dry Eye candidate. According to Dilip Shanghvi, Managing Director, Dry Eye disease is a complex, chronic condition that affects patient's quality of life, often significantly. OTX-101, will allow them to participate in the rapidly growing underserved and dynamic Dry Eye market. When approved, it will be a milestone for millions of Dry Eye patients across the globe that are yet to find relief for their condition. Abhay Gandhi, CEO, North America Business, has said that the company is looking forward to work closely with US FDA over the coming months and launch the drug in the USA as soon as possible. According to some reports the Dry Eye drug market in US is close to $1.8bn. This is a positive development for Sun Pharma. Sun Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd ended at Rs545, up by Rs4.55 or 0.84% from its previous closing of Rs540.45 on the BSE. Sun Pharmaceuticals is the 5th largest speciality generic pharma company in the world. US formulations and Indian-branded Generics contributed 37% and 28% respectively to FY17 revenue....
469 SAIL supplies 55,000 tonne of steel for Delhi Metro’s Magenta Line: Report SAIL 26 Dec, 2017 Steel Authority of India (SAIL) has reportedly supplied around 55,000 tonne of steel for the Delhi Metro’s Magenta Line. The company has supplied TMT, structurals and plates for this project. The 12.64 km long section of the Magenta line (Botanical Garden to Kalkaji) is part of the entire 36.98 km stretch that will connect Janakpuri west to Botanical Garden. Recently, the company supplied around 70% steel for Mizorams biggest power project -- Tuirial Hydro Electric Power project. The company supplied around 5,000 metric tonnes of PM plates (plate mill plates), structural and TMTs for this project, including value added steel plates. SAIL is India’s largest steel producing company. The company is among the five Maharatnas of the country’s Central Public Sector Enterprises. The company has five integrated steel plants, three special plants, and one subsidiary in different parts of the country. ...
470 Maruti Suzuki raises annual sales target to 2.5 million units by 2025 MARUTI 26 Dec, 2017 Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, the seller of every second car in India, has raised its sales target for the second time in two years to 2.5 million units every year by 2025, according to two people with knowledge of the matter. The company, which had in 2015 set itself a target of 2 million in sales by 2020, will achieve that target one year ahead of schedule, said one of the two people, both of whom spoke on condition of anonymity. In meetings with tier-1 suppliers, the company’s management has asked vendors such as PPAP Automotive, JBM Auto Ltd, Minda Industries and Lumax Auto Ltd to ramp up investments near Suzuki Motor Gujarat (SMG)’s manufacturing facilities. Some of the vendors have already started to increase investments in the state to meet the capacity requirements. SMG and Maruti have a contract manufacturing agreement, wherein the latter buys products from the former’s factory at cost price. “Maruti Suzuki has set a target of 2.5 million vehicles by 2025 and the component suppliers have been asked to ramp up their respective capacities in and around the Gujarat plant. Though the target is pretty ambitious, Maruti as a company has always been successful in achieving sales targets,” the person added. Maruti sold 1.5 million units in 2016-17. Significantly, for some of the tier-1 suppliers, business from Maruti Suzuki translates into almost 40% of their revenues. As a result, they don’t have a choice but to follow the company’s guidance. “Maruti Suzuki has set a target of selling 25 lakh (2.5 million) vehicles by 2025 which is ambitious but given the product line-up and capacity it will have in Gujarat, the target is achievable. Some of the component suppliers have plants in both Hansalpur and Sanand, so they have been ramping up both the facilities,” said the second of the two people cited earlier. Maruti’s new sales target has come on the back of a rapidly changing passenger vehicle industry that is going through a disruption of sorts amid changing regulations on fronts such as emission and safety, and a global outcry to move to vehicles run on electricity in order to cut down dependence on fossil fuel and reduce pollution. According to the second person cited above, his company is making an investment of about Rs20 crore in its existing facility in Gujarat to expand production, and the exercise is expected to be completed by 2019. Additionally, the Delhi-based car maker plans to increase its existing capacity in Gujarat. According to R.C. Bhargava, chairman, Maruti Suzuki, the current capacity at the Gujarat facility is 250,000 cars a year, and another line with equal capacity will be added in 2019. According to a company spokesperson, the second line at SMG’s factory will take the total production capacity of Suzuki in India to 2 million units. “Our suppliers are also aligned to our business goals and will make investments in ramping up their capacities accordingly,” the company spokesperson said in response to a Mint questionnaire. “A third line (Line C) will be added depending upon market situation and our suppliers will also align to it,” the spokesperson added. The first of the two people cited earlier said vendors have been asked to gear up for the third line too. Maruti has seen strong sales momentum, even as its peers have struggled. The company’s stock touched the Rs10,000 mark for the first time last week, making it the country’s sixth firm to cross Rs3 trillion in market capitalization. According to Anil Sharma, principal analyst at forecasting firm IHS Markit, the Indian car market is poised to grow in double digits for the next two years. “But, it is confined to Maruti because theirs is a structural story,” he added....
471 Oil near June 2015 high as production cuts tighten market OTHER 26 Dec, 2017 Oil prices were stable on Tuesday, with Brent crude lingering near 2015 highs on the back of an outlook for healthy demand amid ongoing production cuts led by OPEC and Russia. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $58.50 a barrel at 0141 GMT, up 3 cents from their last settlement. Brent crude futures, the international benchmark for oil prices, were at $65.25 a barrel, unchanged from their last close, but near the $65.83 per barrel briefly on Dec. 12 - the highest since June 2015. Brent has risen by 47 percent since mid-2017. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), the Middle East-dominated producer club, and Russia - the world's single biggest oil producer - have been withholding output in order to tighten the market and prop up prices. The agreement to cut started last January and is set to cover all of 2018. Jabar al-Luaibi, oil minister of OPEC-member Iraq, said on Monday there would be a balance between supply and demand by the first quarter of 2018, leading to a boost in oil prices. "During the first quarter of next year there will be more balance between supply and demand, which will reflect positively on improving global oil prices," he said. The production cuts come amid healthy global demand, which many analysts expect to hit 100 million barrels per day (bpd) for the first time at some point next year or in 2019. Keeping a lid on prices for the moment is the expected return of the Forties pipeline system in the North Sea, which can supply up to 450,000 bpd of crude underpinning Brent futures. The pipeline shut down earlier in December due to a crack, but operator Ineos said the system was being tested following repairs and full flows should return in early January. In the longer term, efforts by OPEC and Russia efforts to prop up prices could also be undermined by U.S. production, which has soared by more than 16 percent since mid-2016, fast approaching 10 million bpd. Only OPEC king-pin Saudi Arabia and Russia produce more, but the United States is fast catching up, largely thanks to shale drillers. The U.S. rig count, an early indicator of future output, held at 747 in the week to Dec. 22, according to the latest weekly report by Baker Hughes. That's still much higher than a year ago, when only 523 rigs were active, and most analysts expect U.S. output to rise past 10 million bpd within weeks....
472 L&T’s construction arm bags orders worth Rs 3355 crore LT 26 Dec, 2017 Larsen & Toubro’s (L&T) construction arm -- L&T Construction -- has bagged orders worth Rs 3355 crore under buildings & factories business. The business has won a prestigious order from the ‘India International Convention & Exhibition Centre’ to design and construct a state-of-the-art India International Convention & Expo Center (IICC) in New Delhi. The mega project is planned over 89 hectares of land in Dwarka, New Delhi and will feature world class infrastructure facilities like exhibition spaces, convention areas, hotels, commercial offices, retail spaces and a 20,000 capacity multi-purpose arena. The facilities will be at par with the best in the world and will offer an exquisite ambiance and high quality setting for international as well as national meetings, conferences, exhibitions and trade shows. Larsen & Toubro is a major technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services conglomerate, with global operations. ...
473 Adani Power to transfer Mundra Generation plant to unit ADANIPOWER 26 Dec, 2017 Adani Power announced that it has received all the requisite approvals as required under the scheme of arrangement approved by the NCLT and the scheme of arrangement for the transfer of Mundra Power Generation Undertaking to the Transferee company has been made effective. Adani Power, part of the Adani group, is India’s largest private sector power producer with operating capacity of 10,440 MW. Its plant at Mundra, Gujarat (4620 MW) is the largest single-location coal based private power plant in the world. The stock ended at Rs38.7, up by Rs2.3 or 6.32% from its previous closing of Rs36.4 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs36.95 and touched a high and low of Rs40 and Rs36.55 respectively. ...
474 Hero MotoCorp to hike motorcycle prices from January HEROMOTOCO 23 Dec, 2017 Two-wheeler market leader Hero MotoCorp today said it will increase prices of its motorcycles across models by about Rs. 400 per model on an average from January to partially offset rising input costs. The company is the latest automobile firm after Hyundai, Nissan, Mahindra & Mahindra, Volkswagen, Maruti Suzuki India, Tata Motors, Ford, Toyota Kirloskar Motor, Honda Cars India, Skoda and Isuzu, to announce price hikes from early next year. “The price hike translates to about Rs. 400 per model. The exact quantum of the increase will vary, basis the model and the specific market,” Hero MotoCorp said in a statement. The company sells a range of motorcycles starting from entry level HF Deluxe price at Rs. 42,432 onwards to Karizma ZMR tagged at around Rs. 1.10 lakh. Automobile firms usually announce price hikes in December as they try to woo customers, who usually postpone purchases to acquire vehicles in the new year....
475 RIL in co-branding deal with Myntra for denim collection RELIANCE 23 Dec, 2017 The textile arm of Reliance Industries has identified western India as one of its key focus areas for its trademark R|Elan textile, particularly centres such as Bhiwandi, Tarapur, Ichalkaranj, Malegaon, Navapur in Maharashtra and Surat, Ahmedabad, Vapi and Umbergaon in Gujarat. RIL is targeting 50-60 mills in these regions as part of its supply chain, the company said in a press release. Currently, RIL is in the process of meeting 180-200 top brands, garmenters and exporters to showcase its R|Elan product range. On Friday, RIL announced its co-branding arrangement with fashion e-commerce player Myntra for its private label Mast & Harbour denim collection. According to the press release, the Mast & Harbour denim collection is made from fabric using R|Elan FeelFresh technology that offers anti-microbial and anti-odour properties, as it is embedded with silver particles that inhibit bacterial growth. "R|Elan FeelFresh is one of our flagship products and we are seeing a lot of acceptance for this technology among the leading apparel manufacturers and brands,” Gunjan Sharma, CMO - Polyester Business, RIL, said in the release. Recently, RIL entered a partnership with VF Corporation of the US (which owns the Wrangler brand and is the largest branded denim manufacturer globally) to co-brand the Inficool denim range, made from Kooltex fabric, for the Spring-Summer 2018 collection in its Asian markets, namely China, India, Japan and Thailand. The R|Elan co-branding exercise, the company forecasts, will give it a foothold in the ?2,50,000-crore Indian apparel industry. R|Elan is an umbrella brand from RIL, encompassing a range of enhanced speciality fabrics. The company is forging plans to market it in all apparel segments – active wear, denim, formal wear and womenswear. In the Indian apparel industry, the active wear segment has a 10-15 per cent, or ?2,500 crore market share. Ethnic wear and sarees, the largest apparel sub-segment, commands a ?60,000-crore share. The denim segment, currently worth ?20,000 crore, is expected to grow at 14 per cent CAGR till 2020....
476 Adani Is Said to Seek A$3 Billion Debt for Aussie Coal Plans ADANIENT 23 Dec, 2017 Indian conglomerate Adani Enterprises Ltd. needs as much as A$3 billion ($2.3 billion) in debt financing to help start producing Australian coal from one of the world’s largest mines, after major banks from Sydney to New York said they don’t want to lend to polluting fossil-fuel projects. The company is seeking A$2 billion to A$3 billion from lenders, including from banks in China, for the first phase of developing the Carmichael mine and a rail line in Australia’s northeastern state of Queensland, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. In addition, the firm plans to inject as much as A$3 billion in equity funding for the project, the person said, asking not to be identified because the details are private. Lenders from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to three of China’s largest banks have excluded themselves from the project, prompting researcher BIS Oxford Economics to say Adani’s plans fail to stack up financially. The project has drawn ire from environmentalists who say it will endanger the health of the nation’s Great Barrier Reef, and Australia’s four largest banks have also distanced themselves. "We would not be investing our time, money and energy in this manner if our projects were not viable and if we were not serious about delivering our projects," Adani Australia’s Brisbane-based spokesman said in an emailed response to questions Friday. The company has invested A$3.3 billion across its existing projects in Queensland, according to the email. Adani didn’t respond to questions concerning the details on its funding plans for the project. Local authorities in Queensland have said they would block a loan of A$900 million that Adani had sought from Australia’s government to build the 388 kilometer rail line connecting Carmichael to the company’s Abbot Point port near the Great Barrier Reef. Adani plans to start shipping the fossil fuel from 2020 directly from the port to India for use in coal-fired power stations. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd., Bank of China Ltd., and China Construction Bank Corp., all said earlier this month that they won’t loan money for the project. Still, Adani remains focused on courting Chinese lenders to help finance the development, according to the person. The company aims to produce 27.5 million tons of coal a year in the first phase of production, the person said. It had previously outlined an eventual annual target of 60 million tons from the mine, according to a Queensland government document....
477 Sun Pharmaceutical recalling two batches of Riomet from US market SUNPHARMA 22 Dec, 2017 Sun Pharmaceutical Industries has started recalling two batches of Riomet (metformin hydrochloride) Oral Solution voluntarily from the US market due to microbial contamination. Riomet (metformin oral solution) is an oral diabetes medicine that helps control blood sugar level. The recall was initiated by the firm under ‘Class-II’ classification. Class II recall is a situation in which use of or exposure to a violative product may cause temporary or medically reversible adverse health consequences or where the probability of serious adverse health consequences is remote. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries is the world’s fourth largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company. ...
478 Maruti Suzuki Says Investments Into Fossil-Fuel Engines To Continue For A Decade MARUTI 22 Dec, 2017 Maruti Suzuki India Ltd., India’s largest carmaker, doesn’t see the government’s electric vehicle push slowing down investments into fossil-fuel powered engines for at least a decade. The nation’s aim to turn all cars electric by 2030 is unlikely and automakers, including Maruti Suzuki, are looking to get to a point where four out of every 10 vehicles they sell would be battery-powered by then, Chairman RC Bhargava said at a media interaction in New Delhi. The single-largest challenge for the company would be to electrify small cars and price them comparably to their conventional ones, he said. Electric vehicles today cost twice as much as fossil-fuel variants. The government has lowered the Goods and Services Tax on such cars to 12 percent compared to the minimum 43 percent levy on other passenger vehicles. Also Read: Electric Cars’ Bold Ambition Risks A Race To Nowhere Investments to develop internal-combustion engines will continue to make them cleaner, said Bhargava. The company will also look at launching more hybrids, he said. While Maruti Suzuki's parent, Suzuki Motor Corp., has tied up with Toyota Motor Corp. to jointly develop electric vehicles, the Indian arm does not plan to invest any resources into research and development of the technology, citing duplication. Bhargava said the company has “no expertise” in electric vehicle technology and would rely on the two Japanese auto majors for them. Maruti Suzuki has a mild hybrid motor in its 1.3-litre diesel engine that powers the Ciaz sedan, Ertiga compact utility vehicle, and S-Cross crossover compact SUV. The company’s petrol engines would receive hybrid fitments in the future, the research for which would also be carried out by its Japanese parent, Bhargava said. Capacity constraints would continue being a sticky point for the automaker in 2018 with waiting periods not expected to come down, he said. Maruti Suzuki is commissioning its first assembly line at its new Gujarat unit, with the second plant expected to start production only in early 2019. The plan is to end 2018-19 with an annual production capacity of 2,50,000 units from its Gujarat unit. The automaker also plans to increase output at its manufacturing unit in Manesar, Haryana, but won’t add a new assembly line there, Bhargava said....
479 RInfra to sell Mumbai power business to Adani for ?13,251 crore RELINFRA 22 Dec, 2017 Anil Ambani-backed Reliance Infrastructure Ltd (RInfra) has signed a definitive binding agreement with Adani Transmission Limited (ATL) to sell its Mumbai power business for ?13,251 crore. The deal includes RInfra’s integrated business of generation, transmission and distribution. The deal value comprises business valued at ?12,101 crore and regulatory assets of ?1,150 crore. “In addition, regulatory assets under approval estimated at ?5,000 crore and net working capital on closing, estimated at ?550 crore, will flow directly to RInfra. Total consideration value is estimated at ?18,800 crore,” RInfra said in a statement. RInfra will utilise the entire proceeds of this transaction to reduce its debt of ?20,000 crore. The company’s Mumbai power business (known as Reliance Energy) distributes power to nearly 3 million residential, industrial and commercial consumers in the city’s suburbs, covering an area of 400 sq km. It caters to a peak demand of over 1,800 MW, with annual revenues of ?7,500 crore and stable cash flows. “Going forward, RInfra will focus on upcoming opportunities in asset light EPC and defence businesses,” the statement said. On the block for a while RInfra has been trying to divest its Mumbai distribution business for the past three years. In 2015, it held talks with Canada’s PSP Investments for the sale of a 49 per cent stake in the discom. However, this did not result in a deal. RInfra has been operating its distribution business in Mumbai for the last nine years, and has a licence valid till August 2036. In November, the company had announced completion of the sale of its Western Region System Strengthening Scheme transmission undertakings to Adani Transmission Ltd for ?1,000 crore. The assets under the transaction include Western Region Transmission Maharashtra Project comprising 2,089-circuit km (Ckm) of transmission lines, and Western Region Transmission Gujarat project comprising 974 Ckm of transmission lines. With this acquisition, ATL’s total network will be around 11,350 Ckm, of which approximately 9,000 Ckm are under operation, the company said in a statement. ...
480 Chinese lenders may take 70% in RCom's Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City RCOM 22 Dec, 2017 MUMBAI: China Development Bank, along with other Chinese lenders, which filed for insolvency against Rcom last month, is in advanced talks to take up 70% in development of Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City (DAKC) in Navi Mumbai. The lenders will additionally pay for building contracts. Bids from builders like Hiranandani and Godrej Properties have been received to build the complex, according to people close to the ongoing discussions. The domestic lenders are also expected to get paid out from sale of assets as part of a larger debt restructuring package that is being worked upon. "The Chinese banks are actively looking to settle dues through the land transaction," said a person familiar with the transaction. He further explained that following an insolvency filing against Reliance Communications, the negotiations had intensified and a settlement was likely so as not to derail the structured debt restructuring (SDR) Rcom is currently undergoing with domestic lenders. Mails to CDB, Rcom, and Hiranandani weren't answered till this went to print. Godrej Properties declined comment. Under the SDR which must be resolved by December end, Rcom has also received non-binding bids from Reliance Jio Infocomm and Bharti Airtel, said another person. Jio has bid for all of the India assets of Rcom. The bids include Rs 10,000 crore for towers, optic fibre, network operating centre and data centres a well as Rs 8,000 crore for spectrum, including Rs 7,000 crore which are due to the government on milestones in the future (deferred spectrum). The financing of this acquisition will be through long term debt issued by the current lenders of Rcom to RJio. Reliance Jio's estimated tower rentals to RCom over the life of the asset, according to the contract it has already entered into in 2013, is estimated at Rs 6,000 crore. "It makes sense to acquire everything given Jio will spend this money in rentals over the next 10 years," said one of the people quoted earlier. As for the international assets, Bharti Airtel has placed a bid of $1.2 billion (approximately Rs 7,600 crore) for the undersea cables and enterprise business of Rcom. The unit, called Global Cloud Xchange, has operating income of around Rs 1,000 crore, said one of the people. The funding for Bharti, like Jio will come in the form of long term debt from current lenders, he said. Credit Suisse has been mandated to sell the asset which RCom had unsuccesfully tried to divest many times before. Airtel and Jio didn't respond to ET's query till the time this went to print. Apart from this, around Rs 7,100 crore of debt will be converted by lenders into shares, said one of the people. The remaining debt will continue in Reliance Communications that will run a virtual 4G network and own some more real-estate assets such as the Delhi Head quarter of the company, he added. Of the company's total net debt of Rs 45,000 crore, nearly Rs 5,000 crore comprises vendor payments. "At the moment it seems none of the vendors will be paid," said another person close to matters. Rcom has successfully frustrated insolvency petitions of the vendors and they have no other recourse to recover, he added. "Preferential treatment would be given to financial lenders in any case." Reliance Communications has in the past tried to spin off the real-estate arm for debt reduction. The company sold some flats in 2013 and tied up with Chinese real estate developer Dalian Wanda Group. The JV has since fallen into disuse, said a person close to Rcom. The RcoM stock continued its rally on Thursday after surging 36% a day before, up 4.05% largely on news of 2G acquittal. ...
481 HDFC enters into a definitive agreement with Quickr HDFCBANK 22 Dec, 2017 India's largest mortgage lender HDFC has sold its realty brokerage business HDFC Realty and its digital real estate business HDFC Developers which owns HDFC Red to online classifieds player Quikr. The all-stock deal will see HDFC pick up around 3.5% stake in Quikr for the two businesses, according to sources, which have collectively been valued at about Rs 357 crore. The deal will value Quikr at little over Rs 10,000 crore or about $1.6 billion, as compared to the $1 billion valuation it got when it last raised capital in 2015. Quikr's acquisition of HDFC Red and HDFC Realty is the second largest such deal, for the Bengaluru-based firm in the real estate vertical after it bought CommonFloor for about $120 million in 2015. With this, Quikr has completed 5 acquisitions for its real estate business - its biggest in terms of revenues which currently accounts for over 30% of sales. The move is a significant step for Quikr towards deepening a transaction-based revenue model offering customers end-to-end real estate buying services from online to offline. The move is a part of its strategy towards hitting profitability by FY19. Quikr's real estate rental business currently operates a transaction-based revenue model with an aim to expand beyond listings in the rest of the real estate business by the end of 2017. The deal will also form a commercial strategic partnership between the two companies, where Quikr will help HDFC increase the home loan business with user data on its platform while with HDFC Realty, which will be renamed Quikr Realty, an entry into the brokerage business will be made. HDFC's brand name will also help Quikr attract customers and give its real estate business, which will account for 35-40% of the revenues, better understanding and leverage relationships with builders. "It's a win win transaction for both the companies. In India the real estate industry is going through a transition and large organised players like us can build a strong brand that consumers can trust in unorganised markets like brokerage," said Quikr CEO Pranay Chulet. The deal will further add HDFC Realty's 7,000 strong nationwide broker network along with 7,000 project listings from HDFC Red to its platform. HDFC will also take up a board seat in Quikr. Kotak Investment Banking was the exclusive financial advisor to HDFC for this transaction while Avendus Capital advised Quikr on the deal. For HDFC whose primary business is home buying, the acquisition will give it access to more refined leads at a time when its broking business is losing steam. "We are increasingly seeing real estate sales happen in the online space, so it is a great online - offline partnership for us," said Renu Karnad, MD, HDFC Ltd told ET. "We want to use data analytics on all Quikr platforms to get us housing loans." Quikr has raised about $346 million from Kinnevik AB, Tiger Global, Steadview Capital Management, Matrix Partners India and others since inception in 2008. In FY16, Quikr had reported a 20% increase in net loss at Rs 534 crore and 66% increase in operating revenue at Rs 41 crore. Quikr has not yet filed its FY17 financials with the registrar of companies. HDFC Developers which owns HDFC Red clocked Rs 6.23 crore in revenues while HDFC Realty posted revenues of Rs 35.25 crore as of FY17, the deal significantly adding to Quikr's topline. Both companies however, cumulatively add Rs 28.4 crore in losses to Quikr's bottomline but are now close to breaking even. ...
482 Mukesh’s Jio leads race to buy Anil’s RCom’s assets RCOM 21 Dec, 2017 RIL-owned Reliance Jio Infocomm has emerged the front-runner to acquire the assets of debt-ridden Reliance Communications (RCom). RCom has put its spectrum, towers and fibre on the block. If the company’s asset monetisation plans fructify, it would be worth a total of ?35,000 crore. “RJio is leading the talks to acquire all assets RCom intends to sell, while a number of Private Equity (PE) firms and other strategic investors are also in the fray. The company is also in talks with foreign lenders for co-development of its Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City (DAKC) campus in Navi Mumbai,” a source close to the development told BusinessLine. RJio is in talks to acquire a range of RCom’s spectrum, which will be valued at about ?19,000 crore for the remainder of the licence period. The company, controlled by billionaire Mukesh Ambani, is also in advanced stages of discussions to acquire RCom’s telecom tower portfolio. RCom has about 43,600 towers, valued at ?8,000-9,000 crore. Further, RJio is also in talks to acquire RCom’s domestic fibre, which spans 1.72-lakh km and is valued at about ?4,000 crore, sources added. RCom and RJio declined to comment. Separately, RCom is also in talks with a clutch of PE firms to sell its stake in wholly-owned subsidiary Global Cloud Xchange (GCX). The company has mandated Credit Suisse to find a majority investor in GCX and expects to rake in another ?7,000 crore from the sales. For the co-development of its 133-acre DAKC campus, RCom is believed to be in discussions with Chinese lenders, including China Development Bank. Meanwhile, RCom’s share price surged by around 44 per cent at the fag-end of the trading session on Wednesday, following reports that the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) had adjourned the hearing of insolvency petitions against the company to early next month. The stock closed 35.24 per cent higher at ?17.27 on BSE. During the day, it rose sharply by 44.94 per cent to ?18.51. At NSE, shares of the company rose 35.68 per cent to end at ?17.30. RCom shares surge44% RCom’s share price surged by around 44 per cent at the fag-end of the trading session on Wednesday, following reports that the National Company Law Tribunal had adjourned the hearing of insolvency petitions against the company to early next month. After registering an intra-day high of ?18.51 on the BSE, the RCom stock closed at ?17.27, an increase of 35.24 per cent over Tuesday’s close. ...
483 Suven Life Sciences secures product patents in Canada, India SUVEN 21 Dec, 2017 Suven Life Sciences has secured one product patent from Canada and one product patent from India corresponding to the New Chemical Entities (NCEs) for the treatment of disorders associated with Neurodegenerative diseases and these Patents are valid through 2034 and 2028 respectively. The granted claims of the patents include the class of selective 5-HT4 and 5-HT6 compounds respectively and are being developed as therapeutic agents for major depressive disorders and are useful in the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, Attention deficient hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Huntington’s disease, Parkinson and Schizophrenia respectively. Suven Life Science is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing novel pharmaceutical products, which are first in class or best in class CNS therapies using GPCR targets. ...
484 SAIL utilises multimodal transport for delivery of TMT bars to Bangladesh SAIL 21 Dec, 2017 Steel Authority of India (SAIL) has flagged off first consignment of 1,000 tonnes of SAIL-TMT reinforcement bars from Kolkata port. The domestic steel giant has flagged off the consignment for the Indo-Bangla Maitree Super Thermal Power Project. This is the first time that the company is utilizing multimodal transport for delivery of material to a project site. SAIL is India’s largest steel producing company. The company is among the five Maharatnas of the country’s Central Public Sector Enterprises. The company has five integrated steel plants, three special plants, and one subsidiary in different parts of the country. ...
485 Reliance Infra inks agreement with Adani Transmission RELIANCE 21 Dec, 2017 Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra) has signed Definitive Binding Agreement with Adani Transmission (ATL) for 100% stake sale of its Mumbai Power Business which includes integrated business of generation, transmission and distribution of power for Mumbai. Total Deal value is at Rs 13,251 crore. This comprises of business valued at Rs 12,101 crore and regulatory assets approved so far of Rs 1,150 crore. In addition, regulatory assets under approval estimated at Rs 5,000 crore and net working capital on closing estimated at Rs 550 crore will flow directly to RInfra. Total consideration value is estimated at Rs 18,800 crore. RInfra will utilize the proceeds of this transformative transaction entirely to reduce its debt, becoming debt free and up to Rs 3,000 crore cash surplus. This is the largest ever debt reducing exercise by any Corporate. This monetization is a major step in RInfra’s deleveraging strategy for future growth. Reliance Infrastructure is one of the largest infrastructure companies, developing projects through various Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) in several high growth sectors such as Power, Roads and Metro Rail in the Infrastructure space and the Defence sector. ...
486 Tata Steel to raise capacity in Kalinganagar by 5 MTPA in next phase TATASTEEL 20 Dec, 2017 Tata Steel has received an approval for next phase of expansion of capacity in Kalinganagar by 5 million tons per annum (MTPA) from 3 MTPA to 8 MTPA. This step has been taken following the successful implementation of the Phase I of the Kalinganagar Project in Odisha. The board of directors at its meeting held on December 18, 2017 has approved for the same. The total capacity of Tata Steel India operations following the above expansion will be 18 million tons per annum. The project will cost the company Rs 23,500 crore and will be completed within 48 months. The project configuration and costs includes investments in raw material capacity expansion, upstream and midstream facilities, infrastructure and downstream facilities including a cold rolling mill complex. Tata Steel, the flagship company of the Tata group is the first integrated steel plant in Asia and is now the world’s second most geographically diversified steel producer and a Fortune 500 Company. ...
487 Ashok Leyland unveils BS-IV emission norms-compliant two new trucks ASHOKLEY 20 Dec, 2017 Ashok Leyland unveils BS-IV emission norms-compliant two new trucks...
488 Ashok Leyland unveils BS-IV emission norms-compliant two new trucks ASHOKLEY 20 Dec, 2017 Ashok Leyland has launched BS-IV emission norms-compliant ‘Captain Haulage’ and ‘3718 Plus’ trucks with iEGR engines. The new vehicles also come with frontal crash protection, a feature that helps the trucks to absorb the impact of a head-on collision, thereby keeping the occupants of the vehicle safe in the eventuality of any untoward incident. Captain Haulage Trucks are available in three GVW segments, 25T, 31T & 37T, and built for a wide number of applications such as market load, parcel, tankers, cement bulkers and containers. The 3718 PLUS is latest addition in 37T segment which is one of the fastest growing segments in commercial vehicle industry. The vehicle offers an additional 10 percent fuel savings, 225 kgs of more payload and 10 per cent extra tyre life from new technology tyres. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
489 Morepen Lab gets USFDA clearance for its bulk drug Montelukast Sodium MOREPENLAB 20 Dec, 2017 Morepen Laboratories has received approval from United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) for Montelukast Sodium, a bulk drug / API to sell in the US market. This gives Morepen an entry into the Rs 2000 crore US market for Montelukast. The first commercial orders for the bulk drug are expected in Q2 of FY 2018-19. Morepen is a well-known pharma company having well equipped Research & Development Centre and is all set to seize the Generic revolution in pharma industry, by filing multiple DMFs and COS for new APIs. ...
490 Nitin Spinners gets nod to raise Rs 12.05 crore NITINSPIN 20 Dec, 2017 Nitin Spinners has received an approval for the issuance of 10,00,290 Equity Shares at a price of Rs 120.50 per Equity Share aggregating to Rs 12.05 crore to Ratan Lal Nolklia, Dinesh Nolkha, Nitin Nolakha and Redial Trading and Investment (the Promoters). The Securities Issuance Committee (the Committee) of the Company at its meeting held on December 19, 2017, given approval for the same. Nitin Spinners is an ISO 9001:2008 company and a Government of India recognized Export House, manufacturing 100% Cotton Yarns and Fabrics. ...
491 Amara Raja Batteries commissions two-wheeler battery plant at Andhra Pradesh AMARAJABAT 20 Dec, 2017 Amara Raja Batteries (ARBL) has commissioned its Two-Wheeler Battery Plant at the Amara Raja Growth Corridor in Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh. The first phase of the plant which was commissioned will have a capacity of 5 mn units. The plant will have an ultimate capacity of 17 mn units with an estimated investment of Rs 700 crore taking the total capacity for two-wheeler batteries to 29Mn units. The plant will employ 1300 people at full capacity. It is the most advanced production facility in the country pioneering the use of advanced punched grid making technology for two-wheeler battery manufacturing. The technology ensures best-in-class product performance, higher productivity and improved environmental standards. Amara Raja Batteries is the flagship company of the group and is engaged in manufacturing of industrial and automotive batteries. The company was first to introduce Valve Regulated Lead Acid (VRLA) batteries with three-year warranty in industrial and automotive applications. ...
492 India Plans Rs 11,000 Crore Aid To Boost Local Solar Cell Manufacturing OTHER 19 Dec, 2017 India plans to boost solar module manufacturing by providing Rs 11,000 crore direct support along with concessions to cut reliance on imports from China. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy aims to provide a 30 percent subsidy for setting up new plants and expanding the existing ones, according to a concept note on its website. Heavy equipment required to set up projects shall also be exempt from customs duty, according to the scheme to be operated by Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government targets to boost installed solar power capacity more than five-fold to 100 gigawatt by 2022. But the nation meets 84 percent of its solar cell demand through imports from China, according to a report authored by renewable energy consultancy Bridge To India. Photovoltaic modules account for more than half the costs of a solar project. The cheaper Chinese imports have brought down solar power tariffs to record low. Indian Solar Manufacturers Association, however, have petitioned the government to impose an anti-dumping duty on inbound shipments from China. The renewable energy ministry’s concept note targets creation of solar cell manufacturing capacity of 10 gigawatt over five years. It includes… Interest subvention of 3 per cent to manufacturers setting up new capacity for loans taken through state-run banks. IREDA will call for expressions of interest from potential manufacturers on the interest subvention. The bidders quoting the lowest subsidy rate would be selected, according to the proposal....
493 Adani Cancels A$2 Billion Mine-Building Deal After Funding Woes ADANIENT 19 Dec, 2017 Adani Enterprises Ltd. will build Australia’s largest coal mine by itself after canceling a planned A$2 billion ($1.5 billion) deal with Australia’s Downer EDI Ltd. to help construct the Carmichael project in Queensland state. Adani and Downer mutually agreed to cancel all letters of award for work on the mine first made three years ago, Adani’s Australian unit said in a statement Monday. The decision was partly triggered by the state government’s veto of A$900 million in potential federal funding for a new rail link, which is needed to carry coal from Carmichael to the coast for export, Adani said. The mine will be developed on a owner-operator basis now. Given uncertainty over the funding and timing of the first phase of the project, it made more sense to keep tight control on costs and development within Adani, according to Fat Prophets resources analyst David Lennox. “Once the funding and timetable is securely in place, they may return to the market for specific construction services,” he said. In addition to the state government opposing a federal loan for the project, major lenders from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to Australia’s big four banks have preemptively excluded themselves from financing the Carmichael development because of their opposition to polluting fossil-fuel projects. Adani’s plan in the Galilee basin is opposed by environmentalists who say it will increase carbon pollution and endanger the health of the Great Barrier Reef marine park in the state’s north. Three of China’s largest banks also ruled out any involvement in funding the mine earlier in December. Downer’s original 5-year contract included the management of mine operations, drilling and blasting, and the loading and hauling of waste and coal, the company said in a December 2014 release....
494 Government To Spend Additional Rs 66,113 Crore In 2017-18 OTHER 19 Dec, 2017 The government will spend an additional Rs 66,113 crore in the ongoing financial year, according to the second batch of Supplementary Demand for Grants tabled by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Lok Sabha today. Of the additional gross expenditure sought, net cash outgo will be Rs 33,380 crore. The remaining Rs 32,372 crore will be matched by the government through savings of various ministries or departments, the document said. The government has sought Rs 20,530 crore for three state-run fertiliser companies—Fertilizer Corporation of India, Hindustan Fertilizer Ltd. and Brahmaputra Valley Fertilizer Corporation Ltd—for writing off loans and interest payments, Bloomberg reported. It also requested Parliament to spend another Rs 4,800 crore on the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act. About Rs 960 crore is being sought for user charges to Goods and Services Tax Network and Rs 1,581 crore for meeting additional expenditure for Pay and Allowances of Air Force, said the document. The government will also infuse Rs 212 crore in regional rural banks and has sought the equivalent amount in Supplementary Demand for Grants. There are 56 regional rural banks in India, according to the central bank’s website, which were set up to develop rural economy by providing credit for development of agriculture, trade, commerce, and industry. The government has exhausted 96.1 percent of its fiscal deficit target in the first seven months. The gap between the government's earnings and spending stood at Rs 5.25 lakh crore in the April to October period, compared to the Rs 5.47 lakh crore target for the current financial year, as per the data released by the Controller of General Account. Also Read: Government Moves Second Batch Of Supplementary Demands For Grants...
495 Gross Bad Loans Of Banks Cross Rs 8.5 Lakh Crore In First Half Of FY18 OTHER 19 Dec, 2017 Gross non-performing assets of banks crossed Rs 8.50 lakh crore at the end of Sept. 2017, Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla informed the Lok Sabha. “Reserve Bank of India has informed that the growth in provisions for NPAs of Public Sector Banks in the first half of the current financial year (as on Sep. 30, 2017 over March 31, 2017) was 9.5 percent,” he said in a written reply to the house. RBI has issued directions to certain banks for referring 12 accounts, with fund and non-fund based outstanding amount greater than Rs 5,000 crore and with 60 percent or more classified as non-performing as of March 31, 2016, to initiate insolvency process under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016, the minister said. These 12 accounts constituted about 25 percent of the gross NPAs of the banking system, he said in another reply. In addition to these accounts, Shukla said, RBI has also issued directions to resolve certain other accounts within six months, failing which insolvency proceedings under the Code will need to be initiated. Replying to another question, the minister said there is no proposal under consideration of the government to withdraw bank cheque book facility. “While the government is committed to transform India into a less cash economy and promote digital and electronic transactions through multi-pronged initiatives, cheques are an integral part of the payments landscape and form the backbone of trade and commerce, by being negotiable instruments, which often serve as the security for underlying trade transactions,” he said....
496 Bharti Airtel to become number 2 telco in Rwanda with Tigo acquisition BHARTIARTL 19 Dec, 2017 Telecom operator Bharti Airtel today said that it has signed an agreement with Millicom International Cellular S.A. to acquire 100 per cent stake in its Rwanda operation which operates under the brand name of Tigo Rwanda. "Bharti Airtel Limited...has entered into a definitive agreement with Millicom International Cellular S.A. (Millicom) under which Airtel Rwanda Limited will acquire 100 per cent equity interest in Tigo Rwanda Limited," Bharti Airtel said in a statement. Under this deal, Tigo's 370 million customers will join the network of Airtel Rwanda. The acquisition will make Airtel Rwanda the second largest operator in the country with revenues of over $80 million and a revenue market share of over 40 per cent, the statement said. According to Airtel, the acquisition would make the company number two operator in Rwanda. The deal is subject to regulatory and statutory approvals. The consideration for the transaction is based on approximately 6x EBITDA multiple, payable over two years. In a statement, Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman, Bharti Airtel, said, “Airtel has taken proactive steps in Africa to consolidate and realign the market structure in the last few remaining countries where its operations are lagging on account of lower market share and presence of too many operators. Today, it has taken a step to acquire Tigo Rwanda to become a profitable and a strong challenger in a two-player market. According to Airtel, the existing customers of Tigo Rwanda will join Airtel’s global network. Raghunath Mandava, MD and CEO, Airtel Africa, said, "On completion, the proposed acquisition will undergo seamless integration, both on the customer as well as the network side. The Rwandan telecom market will significantly benefit from this acquisition, further reiterating our stand that in-market consolidations do not just help achieve better market positions but benefit customers and the industry as a whole.” ...
497 M&M targets revenue growth of 20% in next financial year from genset business M&M 19 Dec, 2017 Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) is targeting a revenue growth of 20% in the next financial year from its diesel genset business after entering the high kVA segment. The diesel genset business is currently generating revenue of Rs 1,250 crore of the overall sales of the company. The company is targeting Tier II and III towns where there are frequent outages as compared to the Tier I cities. M&M is the flagship company of the Mahindra Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. Amongst the various business interests of its parent group, the company is mainly involved in the automobile manufacturing. It is one of the leading auto companies of India. ...
498 SAIL supplies 70% steel for Tuirial Hydro Electric Power project SAIL 18 Dec, 2017 Steel Authority of India (SAIL) has supplied around 70% steel for Mizorams biggest power project -- Tuirial Hydro Electric Power project. The company has supplied around 5,000 metric tonnes of PM plates (plate mill plates), structural and TMTs for this project, including value added steel plates. Moreover, the company is supplying steel for several vital projects in the country's north eastern region. SAIL is India’s largest steel producing company. The company is among the five Maharatnas of the country’s Central Public Sector Enterprises. The company has five integrated steel plants, three special plants, and one subsidiary in different parts of the country. ...
499 Parle Planning To Hike Prices Of Glucose, Marie Biscuits OTHER 18 Dec, 2017 Biscuits and confectionery maker Parle Products is planning to increase the prices of its glucose, Marie and milk biscuits in the first quarter of 2018, a company official said. “As of now, we have not taken any price hike (decision) but we would be thinking of a price hike considering the increased taxes. It will happen in the first quarter of next year, which is January-March,” Parle Products Category Head Mayank Shah told PTI. There might be an increase of 4-5 percent in the price in brands which are below Rs 100 per kg. Mayank Shah, Category Head, Parle Products Primarily, glucose, milk and Marie are the categories which will see increase in prices, he said, adding that the company will probably look at one category at a time for the price increase. Its flagship brand ParleG, that is dominant in the glucose segment, BakeSmith English Marie and Milk Shakti are the brands that would see a price revision. The company had not increased the prices of these products post the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax, when the government had slapped a uniform tax rate on biscuits. Biscuits below Rs 100 per kg, including the glucose category, and those above Rs 100 per kg were placed in the 18 per cent tax slab under GST. Earlier, biscuits priced below Rs 100 per kg did not attract excise duty but the effective tax rate was around 9-10 percent. "For mass (category) earlier we were taxed at a lower rate and now we are taxed at a higher rate, so there has been an impact there and they (mass offerings) have suffered a bit," he said, adding that growth has been slow in the biscuit below Rs 100 per kg category at 6-7 percent, compared to the industry growth of 14-15 percent. The city-based company had crossed subsidised the premium varieties with affordable ones post GST, he added. Low priced high nutrition biscuits that are largely priced below Rs 100 per kg is estimated to be a Rs 9,000 crore market, constituting 35 percent of the Rs 25,000 crore organised biscuit market in the country. The total biscuit industry has managed to clock a growth of around 14-15 percent this year, with the mid-premium categories driving growth. "Biscuits have been able to overcome both demonetisation and GST. Biscuits which were earlier taxed at a higher rate and now have been brought down under 18 percent, have grown better. Because of the tax benefits (in biscuits above Rs 100 per kg) being passed on to the consumers, there has been a growth in consumption," he said. Rural demand has also seen an uptick this year, with a growth of almost 60-70 per cent, he added....
500 Adani drops contractor for Carmichael coal mine in Australia ADANIENT 18 Dec, 2017 Adani said on Monday it had cancelled plans with Downer EDI Ltd to help develop and run its Carmichael coal mine in Australia after failing to secure a cheap government loan for the A$16.5 billion ($13 billion) project. The move marks the latest blow to the long-delayed Carmichael mine, which has yet to line up financing as a growing list of Australian and international banks, including three Chinese state lenders, have said they would not back the project. Adani and Downer said on Monday they had agreed to cancel all letters of award for mine services and related infrastructure, after the premier of the state of Queensland said she would veto a A$900 million loan from the federal government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) for the mine’s rail line. “Following on from the NAIF veto last week, and in line with its vision to achieve the lowest quartile cost of production by ensuring flexibility and efficiencies in the supply chain, Adani has decided to develop and operate the mine on an owner operator basis,” Adani Australia said in a statement. The company said it remained committed to the project, which has been delayed for years due to numerous court challenges from green groups concerned about climate change and potential damage to the Great Barrier Reef. The letters of award that Downer received in 2014 were preliminary agreements that were expected to lead to contracts worth more than A$2 billion over seven years to build infrastructure and run Adani’s mine, Downer said at the time. The companies never got to the stage of signing actual contracts, and Downer never included the A$2 billion in its pipeline of “work in hand”. However its shares fell 1.6% in early trade on Monday in a broader market that was up 0.4%. Reuters...
501 Bharti Airtel’s valuations suggest all is well in India’s telecom industry BHARTIARTL 18 Dec, 2017 Bharti Airtel Ltd appears to be in a bit of a sweet spot as far as news flow goes. No sooner did investors start pricing in benefits of consolidation in its India wireless business, than the company also reported an improvement in the performance of its Africa operations. Earlier this week, the company also announced the sale of a 15% stake in its DTH (direct-to-home) business for $262 million. But with the Airtel stock having risen 70% this year, it is pricing in all this and more. Airtel retains an 80% stake in the DTH business, which is valued at $1.75 billion. While it’s heartening to note that the company has another source to tap some liquidity, the liquidity from the stake sale is a drop in the ocean when compared with the company’s debt of over $8 billion. What analysts are quite excited about, however, is the recent improvement in Africa operations. “We believe Bharti is on a good footing to finally deliver on the Africa acquisition promise, thanks to some solid repair jobs undertaken in the past two-to-three years...this reflects well in (a) as many as five markets moving into the 40%+ Ebitda margin zone in 2QFY18 versus zero in FY16, and (b) only four markets staying with sub-20% Ebitda margin versus as many as eight in FY16,” analysts at Kotak Institutional Equities pointed out in a note to clients last week. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or Ebitda, is a measure of profitability. A highlight of Airtel’s September quarter results was the recovery in Africa margins. Despite the improvement, Kotak’s analysts still value the Africa business at around Rs43,000 crore, which is about as much as the debt on account of these operations. As such, equity value attached to Africa is close to nil in Kotak’s books. But the broker’s analysts add, “We see upside risk to our Africa forecasts, especially on profitability.” The mainstay, at least as far as valuations go, is the India wireless business. The fact that Airtel shares have risen 70% this year suggests hopes are riding high on this business. While investors may be right in expecting benefits of consolidation, the journey to that state of affairs continues to be a tortuous one. Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd has only a 12-13% share of the market, and can be expected to remain a disruptive force until it reaches a far more sizeable market share. This can mean cut-throat competition on pricing, while investors seem to be pricing in a benign pricing environment. Airtel may eventually end up being one of the main beneficiaries of the consolidation in the telecom sector; but investors who are eyeing those spoils should also have the stomach for the bumpy road to get there....
502 Telecom companies bet on content to boost revenue OTHER 16 Dec, 2017 Telecom operators are expanding further into areas such as home broadband and cable TV and aggressively signing up content partnerships, as they seek new revenue opportunities by better utilising the massive infrastructure they have built, analysts tracking the sector said. From movies and music to e-magazines, the country's big three telecom operators are partnering with content providers in what analysts see as a win-win for both. Such deals will help the telcos in their battle with Reliance Jio Infocomm, which has pegged content as a key differentiator in a fiercely competitive market, and offer a large subscriber audience to content makers, analysts said. In the home broadband and cable TV space, which has a market opportunity of $30 billion (?1.93 lakh crore), HSBC Global Research expects telecom operators to pick as much as a 50% share. The biggest pull for the companies is that they can better utilise their existing fibre network. The telcos will claim this segment on the back of vulnerability shown by multiple system operators (MSOs) and direct-to-home players who have either notfaredwellin providing highdefinition servicesor don't have sustainable business models, HSBC said in a report dated December 13. We see telcos bundling over the top services, cable TV, fixed-line voice and home broadband supported by deeper HD penetration," it said. "This impliesurban digital cable TV average revenue per user (ARPUs) may expand 2-3 times in the medium term." "We see RIL (Reliance Industries) leading the telco pack and expect Bharti (AirtelBSE -0.39 %) to follow," it said. Meanwhile, in the content space, Bharti AirtelBSE -0.39 %, Vodafone India and Idea CellularBSE 0.11 % are aggregating thirdparty content, while newcomer Jio is largely betting on its own digital media offerings. Arjun Vishwanathan, an associate director (emerging technologies) at IDC, said: "Content providers want a ready audience to proliferate their offerings," which is where the telcos come in as they can "offer the captive audience". These deals, he said, makes sense also for telcos that want subscribers spend beyond normal recharges or post-paid bills. This can help boost their average revenue per user. A string of deals entered into by the old-timers suggests that they are trying to bolster content portfolios to fightJio. TheseincludeBhartiAirtel's acquisition of a strategic stake in Juggernaut Books, Vodafone India's deal to offer free subscriptions of Netflix and Magzter to customers of its 'RED' plans and Idea Cellular's partnership with Magzter to offer users access to digital magazines and news. Jio, on its part, inked a multi-year deal with Roy Kapur Films under which digital video content for the Jio platform would be curated, developed, commissioned and produced. Jio's parent, Reliance Industries, acquired a 25% stake in TV content production company Balaji Telefilms. Dipankar Ghoshal, Vodafone India's national head (VAS & content), said the company "is exploring ways to monetise the video platform," especially as "video viewing through data already stands at 50% of overall (data) consumption and is likely to rise further to 70%." Sameer Batra, CEO of Airtel's Wynk content business, said the company "is committed to collaborating with content providers and providing them a solid distribution platform." ...
503 Airtel's rushed Africa entry was a mistake that took many years to fix, admits Sunil Mittal BHARTIARTL 16 Dec, 2017 Bharti AirtelBSE -0.39 % chairman Sunil Mittal admitted that his move to invest in Africa in 2010 may have been 'a bit rushed', and that took several years to fix, time and energy that could have been spent fortifying the No 1 carrier's in its home market where it faces intense competition. "We all must have made lots of mistakes. Lots of decision when you look back, say I wish they were better thought through. If you pin me down to one, I would say in 2010 our decision to go to Africa was a bit rushed and that has taken 6-7-8 years and lot of resources and my personal time to fix that," Mittal said in response to a question on the one business decision that he regrets the most. Mittal was speaking at the TiEcon Delhi event among a gathering of entrepreneurs, where he also gave advice based on his life's lessons, including always having control on one's financial situation, building credibility with partners for the long term - for instance Warburg Pincus which reinvested in Airtel's DTH arm after nearly two decades - and not taking short cuts. Bharti Airtel had bought Kuwait-based Zain Telecom's African assets for $10.7 billion in 2010, after which the carrier had operations in 17 African countries. At present, the number has come down to 15. In a recent interview with ET, Mittal said that the company would look at consolidation in countries like Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania, through mergers, acquisitions or both, even as the overall Africa business was turning a corner. "In Africa, thankfully, it is much better place today. It is free cash flow positive but when I look I think if I would have conserved that energy, capital and energy, probably we would have been better place today in our home market. Every entrepreneur comes to a point where you make some mistake and the only thing is that you should recognise it and try to fix it as fast as you can," Mittal said. In the quarter ended September, Airtel Africa reported a 2.8% increase in revenue to $782 million, where the operating profit margins improved by 9% on-year for the quarter. The region reported a profit of $48 million as opposed to a loss of $91 million in the same quarter a year before. At the end of September, it had total debt of Rs 91,480 crore. "It has taken 6-7 years, I wish you know, if had to look back we should have not taken that decision but having taken that decision, you need to back it, you need to fix it. It's my job, it's my team's job to fix it," the doyen of the telecom industry said at the event on Friday. When asked about keeping pace with competition, Mittal said that one not only has to compete in the market to win, but also to remain relevant. The company competes with deep-pocketed and nimble footed players like Vodafone India, Idea Cellular and Reliance Jio in the Indian market, amid lowest tariffs offering free voice and very low cost data services. In response to query on performance of insurance business, Mittal said that Bharti Axa has recently got new team and fresh investments and insurance business has its own gestation period. "In 5-7 years we will be very happy if we are in top 10 in both life and general (insurance)," Mittal said. On the Airtel Payments Bank, Mittal said that bank was meant for financial inclusion, especially for those who have not used banking services in the past, and that opportunity to scale it in India was very big. "It is a frugal bank where you go in rural-suburban people to include those who have never been in to bank branch or don't have bank account," he said. Mittal added that the bank was opening 80,000-100,000 thousand accounts daily and that the move was a 'big and good opportunity' going in to future. .. ...
504 NHAI mulls incentives for officials to push Bharatmala scheme NHAI 16 Dec, 2017 To expedite implementation of the ambitious Bharatmala project, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has decided to start an incentive scheme for its officials. "The scheme will reward hardworking, meritorious officials and will act as a catalyst to motivate other officials to work more efficiently," Road Transport and Highways Ministry said in a statement today. The highway construction scheme not only envisages completing the projects earlier than the scheduled time, but also aims at savings on account of cost overruns on account of time delays. Under this scheme, cash incentives and other rewards including certificates and trophies would be given to the officials of NHAI to complete the assigned task in a time-bound manner. Bharatmala project is an umbrella programme for roads under which 34,800 km of highways will be constructed at a cost of Rs 5.35 lakh crore....
505 Unilever to sell spreads business to KKR for $8 billion HINDUNILVR 16 Dec, 2017 Unilever has agreed to sell its margarine and spreads business to U.S. private equity firm KKR for 6.83 billion euros ($8.04 billion) to concentrate on faster growing products. The maker of Knorr soup and Dove soap announced the deal on Friday, hours after Reuters reported that KKR had entered exclusive talks to buy the shrinking business after outbidding rivals. The brands to be sold include Becel, Flora, Country Crock and Blue Band. Unilever put the business up for sale in April, following a review of its assets prompted by February's unsolicited $143 billion takeover attempt by Kraft Heinz . "The announcement today marks a further step in reshaping and sharpening our portfolio for long-term growth," said Chief Executive Paul Polman. "The consideration recognises the market leading brands and the improved momentum we have achieved." The spreads business has been in decline for years as people eat less bread and margarine, but Unilever has taken steps to stem the decline and the unit is very profitable. That made it attractive to private equity firms who were the main bidders in the auction run by Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Based in New York, KKR had $153 billion in assets under management as of the end of September. The firm has a long history in the consumer sector and it has investments in India's Coffee Day Resorts and Chinese white goods maker Qingdao Haier. Earlier this year, KKR bought majority control of vitamin maker Nature's Bounty. The deal with Unilever is expected to close mid-2018, subject to regulatory approvals and employee consultations. Unilever, whose sales unexpectedly slowed in October, said it plans to return the cash to shareholders, unless more value-creating acquisition options arise. This year Unilever has snapped up small brands including Tazo tea, Sundial Brands and Carver Korea. Unilever said last month it favoured ending its dual Anglo-Dutch structure to become a single entity, but it has delayed a decision whether it would be based in Britain or the Netherlands....
506 ITC opens Rs1,500cr integrated food park in Punjab, milk-based beverages to be launched ITC 16 Dec, 2017 ITC rolled out its largest integrated food manufacturing and logistics facility at Kapurthala, Punjab on December 14, 2017, as per media sources. This unit would have the wheat mandis as well to procure the grain from farmers, in addition to FMCG units. The facility is spread across 8 lakh sq.ft with initial investment of Rs1,500cr and would be producing atta, noodles, wafers, biscuits, fruit juices and other fruit-based beverages. In addition to FMCG products, ITC would launch a range of ready-to-drink milk-based beverages and frozen desserts from this new plant to accelerate its dairy business. The first dairy-based product is expected to be launched in the second or third quarter of next fiscal year. ITC’s expansion plan in dairy business is a part of its long-term goal of reaching Rs100,000cr revenue from the non-cigarette business by 2030. The company had earlier announced an investment of Rs25,000cr in 65 projects and expects one or two facilities to be operational every year. ITC enjoys leadership position in all the segments it caters to, and is continuously trying to gain market share in its FMCG segment through new product launches and newer segments. Cigarettes, where it has ~80% market share has been marred by the aggressive tax incidence under GST. Additionally, the uncertainty of timelines for tax rate revision under GST makes the company more prone to volume volatility. Further, though, the FMCG segment is set to gain from the supply chain benefits post GST implementation and shift in demand to the organised players, we remain cautious on its profitability. ITC Ltd ended at Rs 264.75, up by Rs 0.85 or 0.32% from its previous closing of Rs 263.9 on the BSE....
507 Tech Mahindra to develop blockchain tech solution for vehicle registration TECHM 15 Dec, 2017 Tech Mahindra is working on developing a solution using blockchain technology for vehicle registration and related activities and two Southern states have evinced interest in using the technology. The leading IT firm said the technology will make vehicle registration easier. Under this technology, the dealer can issue a registration certificate and number for a vehicle. There is no need for you to take the vehicle to RTA for registration. Tech Mahindra is a leading provider of solutions and services to the telecommunications industry with a majority stake owned by Mahindra & Mahindra. The company, since 2002 has operations in China with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Guangzhou. ...
508 ITC opens integrated food manufacturing, logistics facility at Kapurthala ITC 15 Dec, 2017 ITC has rolled out its largest integrated food manufacturing and logistics facility at Kapurthala in state of Punjab with the first-ever wheat mandi unit to procure the grain from farmers, besides other FMCG units. The facility is spread across 8 lakh square feet and entailed an initial investment of Rs 1,500 crore. The facility when operational, will create direct employment of over 2,000 people, besides indirect employment throughout the value chain. The plant will manufacture the company’s popular food brands such as Aashirvaad, Bingo!, Sunfeast, YiPPee! and B Natural, among others. ITC has business a interests in cigarettes, hotels, paperboards and specialty papers, packaging, agri-business, packaged foods and confectionery, information technology, branded apparel, personal care, stationery, safety matches and other FMCG products. ...
509 GMR Group-Megawide consortium emerges as preferred bidder for Clark Airport project GMRINFRA 15 Dec, 2017 GMR Group in consortium with Megawide Construction Corporation has emerged as the preferred bidder for Clark International Airport EPC tender having submitted the most competitive financial bid. Clark airport is being developed by Government of Philippines through a hybrid model with EPC and O&M tenders being issued separately. The EPC project scope involves design, construction, testing and commissioning of new Terminal with a capacity of eight million passengers per annum. The consortium will construct the integrated terminal along with specified landside facilities such as car parks. The Consortium expects to receive the Notice of Award within one week. This is the second airport project which GMR Group will be developing in Philippines along with Megawide Construction Corporation, with the consortium already operating the Mactan Cebu International airport, the second largest airport of Philippines which handles 10 million passengers annually. GMR Group is a leading global infrastructure conglomerate with has interest in various sectors including airport, energy and transportation. ...
510 Aegis Logistics: new capacities provide an opportunity and a challenge AEGISCHEM 14 Dec, 2017 The Aegis Logistics Ltd stock hit a new 52-week high this week, after the company reported a robust performance for the September quarter. Growth in both revenues and profits during the past one year has been very strong. Moreover, as new capacities come on stream, the company is expected to maintain the momentum in volumes. The only question that investors need to ponder over is about the returns from the fresh capacities. A note from SBICap Securities Ltd points out that while liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) terminal capacity is slated to expand rapidly in India, LPG imports are estimated to increase only gradually. “Government estimates suggest LPG imports would merely double from around 10 million tonnes (mt) at present to around 20mt by FY35, implying a modest CAGR of 4%. Aegis alone is adding around 4mt of additional throughput by FY18, and has plans to pursue two more LPG import terminals this year. With competition (Adani Ports, etc.) also anticipated to set up a high ROCE, low gestation period project, the returns are likely to moderate from the current high levels,” the broking firm said in a note. CAGR is compound annual growth rate and ROCE is return on capital employed. The firm provides port logistics solutions in the oil and gas sector. It does gas sourcing, offers terminal (provides storage and allied services) and distribution services with a wide presence in LPG. Capacities at Haldia, Pipavav and Mumbai ports are seeing major expansion. Aegis Logistics expects existing and new customer relationships to drive volumes at the fresh capacities. Of course, the LPG import demand projections are not watertight and can change. With steadily rising LPG usage in India, Aegis Logistics should find no difficulty in achieving threshold utilization levels at the new capacities. Does that, however, justify the stock’s premium valuations? The Aegis Logistics stock trades at 34 times one-year forward earnings estimate. To maintain the premium, the company will have to continue to deliver a robust performance, which, argues SBICap Securities, is a tough task. According to the broking firm, for Aegis Logistics to grow faster than the LPG import market, it will have to take market share from incumbents like Indian Oil Corp. Ltd, a dim possibility, not to mention the impending competition from new entrants. Another aspect investors need to keep track of is the development and adoption of electric cookers and vehicles. In a separate note on the energy sector, Kotak Institutional Equities warns about a possible slowdown in demand for compressed natural gas in major urban areas (Delhi, Mumbai) if electric vehicle adoption gathers pace. Aegis Logistics straddles several business segments (including business-to-business). But it also has a retail (auto) LPG distribution business where a change in consumer preferences will influence demand. In short, investors will have to keep an eye on how demand shapes up compared to supply....
511 Marico plans online-only brands MARICO 14 Dec, 2017 To cash in on huge opportunities in the digital space, homegrown consumer goods company Marico is planning to create a number of brands purely for online sales over the next few years. "For consumer packaged goods (CPG), digitisation is more of an opportunity rather than a disruption threat. While CPG has been lagging in digitisation, I think there is huge opportunities not just for productivity and efficiency but also for long-term growth," Marico MD & CEO Saugata Gupta told an IAMAI-organised industry meet here today. Gupta said Marico is viewing digitisation as an opportunity for accelerating growth rather than a disruption. "We recently launched a brand internally to test this market. What we intend to do in future is actually have a series of digital brands which will be only in e-commerce and limited physical availability at modern trade. We advertised this brand 100 per cent non-mass," he added. The city-based compay recently launched a meal replacement beverage Saffola Nutri-Shake that is a digital- only product, he said. Reportedly, Marico, which sells hair oil brands like Parachute and Nihar, has created a new team internally called the Engine 2 that will enable it to create and incubate new categories. It is at the preliminary stage of digitisation. As far as revenue generation is concerned, we are setting up a new team that will work in a different way, by experimenting with some horizon projects of tomorrow. The risk appetite will be higher there," he said. He said between now and the next two-three years Marico may start a lot of initiatives, some of them will be digital brands, some of them will be disruptive. "It is not that digitisation is happening only in Engine 2, it is more of a revenue generation which is the Engine 2," he added. On the success of digital brands, he said, "if after three years, I've two-three scaled up digital brands that will be a big success. I don't think in the next three years they will have enough revenue to actually move the needle but I think from here if two-three initiatives can contribute beyond 5 per cent revenue by 2022, that's good enough." He observed that given the digital penetration, companies can have their business models in both offline and online in an effective manner. "You can have brick and mortar and digital brands co- existing, and given the nature of the domestic market, the two models will co-exist. It is not that one will eat up the other. I think the two models have to work parallely just like traditional kirana and modern trade," he said. Identifying go-to-market as a huge untapped opportunity in terms of digitisation, Gupta said the company has invested significantly into this and has integrated the supply chain opting for a pull rather than push approach. ...
512 Glenmark completes Phase-3 clinical trial for Ryaltris GLENMARK 14 Dec, 2017 Glenmark announced that it has completed primary clinical endpoint in a Phase 3 study evaluating the safety of Ryaltris - an investigational fixed-dose combination nasal spray which is used in perennial allergic rhinitis (PAR). Glenmark's phase 3, US-based trial enrolled 601 adults and adolescents 12 years of age and older with at least a two-year history of PAR. Patients were randomized to 52 weeks of twice-daily treatment with Ryaltris, or two different formulations of a placebo nasal spray. The press release by the company states that the data from this trial has not yet been published. Glenmark will be submitting these data for presentation at upcoming scientific meetings and publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Glenmark’s respiratory pipeline is specifically aimed at addressing the global public health burden of allergic rhinitis, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and includes five investigational treatments across the disease spectrum and devices. Ryaltris (mometasone furoate (25 mcg) and olopatadine hydrochloride (665 mcg)), formerly GSP 301 Nasal Spray, has been conditionally accepted by the USFDA as the brand name. The company plans to file first New Drug Application (NDA) in the first quarter of CY18. Glenmark, a manufacturer of branded and generic formulations and APIs, is engaged majorly in dermatology, cardiology, diabetes and respiratory segments. It derived 74% revenue from exports, of which USA alone contributed 41% in FY17. The company expects higher penetration in respiratory, CVS, anti-infectives, antidiabetics segments to boost domestic business by ~14% CAGR over FY17-19E. The stock is trading at 14x P/E on FY19E earnings. Glenmark is currently trading at Rs 534.4, up by Rs 2.35 or 0.44% from its previous closing of Rs 532.1 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs 538 and has touched a high and low of Rs 546.9 and Rs533 respectively. So far 68,160(NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs15014.1cr. ...
513 ICICI Lombard offers Solar Panel Warranty Insurance policy ICICIBANK 14 Dec, 2017 ICICI Lombard General Insurance now covers solar park developers by insuring the park owners. The standalone insurance product gives comfort to lenders and investors and is a perfect solution to support project finance. The product will be distributed through the company’s branches and affiliated agencies. The Solar Panel Warranty Insurance caters to solar park developers, with the park owner as the insured and sole beneficiary. The policy safeguards the insured against performance degradation of PV modules, under performance warranty due to the hazards like Faulty manufacturing, Material defects and Material ageing. ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company offers its customers a comprehensive and well-diversified range of products, including motor, health, crop/weather, fire, personal accident, marine, engineering and liability insurance, through multiple distribution channels. ...
514 BEML launches new Wheel Loader BEML 13 Dec, 2017 BEML has launched a 5.4 ton, 3.1 cum bucket Wheel Loader BL30-1 at Excon Exhibition 2017 at Bangalore. It has been designed and developed by the company’s R&D team. BL30-1 Frontend Wheel Loader is designed for maximum equipment utilization, with best- in-class fuel efficient engine, ergonomically designed cabin added to superior production performance. This wheel loader is suited for various loading applications and provides higher return on investment. Apart from this, the company is showcasing other construction equipment such as BG605I and BG405A Motor Graders, BE220G Hydraulic Excavator, BL9H Backhoe loader in this exhibition. BEML a leading mining and construction equipment manufacturer has designed and developed indigenously over 40 products through its R&D, anc are not only working in India but also in 65 countries around the world. ...
515 Neuland Laboratories concludes acquisition of manufacturing facility of Arch Pharmalabs NEULANDLAB 13 Dec, 2017 Neuland Laboratories has completed the acquisition of manufacturing facility, comprising of land, buildings, plant, machinery and equipment, owned by Arch Pharmalabs situated at Gaddapotharam, Jinnaram Mandal, Sanga Reddy District. Earlier in November, the company had received board’s approval for purchase of manufacturing facility owned by Arch Pharmalabs under the provisions of Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002 (SARFAESI) from JM Financial Asset Reconstruction Company (JMFARC) by mutual consent. Neuland Laboratories manufactures active pharmaceutical ingredients for global pharmaceutical companies and provides end-to-end solutions for the pharmaceutical industry for chemistry-related services. ...
516 Havells India planning to set-up new manufacturing facility in Rajasthan HAVELLS 13 Dec, 2017 Havells India is planning to set up a new facility to manufacture consumer durables such as Air-conditioners, Refrigerators, TVs, Washing Machines etc. in Ghiloth/ Neemrana in the State of Rajasthan, subject to approval of the Board or its Committee. Havells India is a leading FMEG company (Fast moving electrical goods) with presence across India. Its product range includes Industrial & Domestic Circuit Protection Switchgear, Cables& Wires, Motors, Fans, Power Capacitors, Luminaires for Domestic, Commercial & Industrial applications, Modular Switches etc. ...
517 Ashok Leyland unveils light commercial vehicle ‘DOST+’ in Bhubaneswar ASHOKLEY 13 Dec, 2017 Ashok Leyland has launched a new light commercial vehicle in Bhubaneswar with higher payload and superior mileage. The company has launched the ‘DOST+’ range, which follows its entry in the LCV segment with ‘DOST’. The ‘DOST+’ with its superior mileage, excellent pickup, 18 per cent higher payload, 7 per cent more loading space and bigger, 15-inch tyres add more value to every trip, ensuring higher earnings. Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship company in India, is engaged in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and related components. The company’s products include buses, trucks, engines, defense and special vehicles. ...
518 NMDC gets nod to transfer Bailadila Deposit-13 in favour of JV with CMDC: Report NMDC 13 Dec, 2017 NMDC has reportedly received approval to transfer a top iron ore resource Bailadila Deposit-13 in favour of its joint venture (JV) company with Chhattisgarh Mineral Development Corporation (CMDC). Earlier the lease deed of Deposit-13 was executed by NMDC on January 10, 2017 pursuant to lease grant order dated January 7, 2017. The transfer of lease from NMDC to the joint venture company NMDC-CMDC referred to as NCL was warranted as per the clause of the JV agreement and conditions in the lease grant order. Accordingly, the Bailadila Iron Ore Dep-13 lease in village Kirandul, Tehsil - Bacheli, in South Bastar district Dantewada in Chhattisgarh has been registered in favor of NCL on December 4, 2017 subsequent to the state government order dated November 6, 2017. NMDC is a state-controlled mineral producer of the Government of India. It is fully owned by the Government of India and is under administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. ...
519 Punj Lloyd bags orders from GAIL, NHAI PUNJLLOYD 13 Dec, 2017 Punj Lloyd has bagged an order for laying and construction of steel pipeline along with associated facilities for Dharma-Angul section of Jagdishpur-Haldia-Bokaro-Dhamra Pipleline Project (JHBDPL) PH-II worth Rs 276.11 crore from GAIL. The company has also received an order for up-gradation of Yargi-Kalewa Road section in Myanmar of two lane with Earth shoulders on EPC mode worth Rs 1,177 crore, in joint venture with Varaha Infra from National Highway Authority of India (NHAI). Punj Lloyd is a diversified international conglomerate offering EPC services in Energy and Infrastructure along with engineering and manufacturing capabilities in the Defence sector. ...
520 Britannia eyes boost in rural contribution to overall revenue to 30-35% in three years BRITANNIA 13 Dec, 2017 Biscuit maker Britannia Industries Ltd is deploying strategies for rural markets that straddle all its key focus areas for the future, in a bid to boost revenue contribution from those regions to at least 30-35% over the next 2-3 years, a top executive said. Expanding its direct distribution reach, product innovation, and increasing sales from the so-called Hindi belt are the other priorities for Britannia. Rural India currently accounts for more than 20% of the company’s total revenue. And in line with its first priority of expanding its direct reach, Britannia has already set up 13,000 stock points—distribution points from where it supplies to shops in surrounding areas—across rural markets. “Rural is where the headroom is and there are many programmes that the government is driving on that front. I think there is going to be far more momentum that will come from there. Disposable incomes will go up and consumers’ appetite for better products will also go up,” Gunjan Shah, Britannia’s vice-president of sales said in an interview. On 11 November, Britannia reported an 11.52% jump in net profit for the July-September quarter and the company’s managing director Varun Berry attributed volume growth during the period, partly, to the focus on rural markets. Revenue from the rural side continues to grow in double-digits, the company said in a presentation to analysts on 15 November. To ramp up sales in rural areas, especially of its more premium biscuit brands like Good Day and Marie Gold, the company has experimented with innovative packaging options. It sells smaller packs of these brands that cost Rs5-10. It has also piloted a few marketing campaigns in the rural markets and now plans to run those on a much larger scale going ahead. “One thing we are looking at doing is ensure that we develop awareness and activation at the local level in those villages. We can activate weekly markets where we can set up stalls and make them aware of our products like cream biscuits and brands like Tiger,” Shah said. This is the first time Britannia will be running branding campaigns in rural markets. Expanding sales in rural India also aligns with the company’s second priority of increasing its penetration and market share in the Hindi belt, which it views as large swathes of Rajasthan and Gujarat, to Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh among others. Britannia has traditionally been weaker in these parts, which are dominated more by larger national names like Parle Products Pvt. Ltd and several region-specific brands. The rural market should be viewed as two sets of consumers in India—the rural middle and upper class, and the rural mass, according to Sreedhar Prasad, partner and head of consumer markets at KPMG in India. Marketing campaigns need to be tailored to both segments in order to be more effective, he added. “For the rural middle and upper class, the growth story can be achieved through newer channels like assisted commerce as well as alliance partners, wherein the availability is enhanced through new age distribution channels. For the rural mass, the retailer is the biggest influencer and retailer schemes and promotions would still be the sales initiative that could help grab the market,” Prasad said....
521 Larsen & Toubro Infotech concludes acquisition of Syncordis India LT 12 Dec, 2017 Larsen & Toubro Infotech (LTI) has completed acquisition of 100% shareholding of Syncordis Software Services India (Syncordis India) from Syncordis S.A., thereby making Syncordis India, a wholly owned subsidiary of the company. The acquisition of Syncordis S.A., Luxembourg along with other identified subsidiaries in Luxembourg, France and UK, is in the process of closure and completion of which will be intimated by the company in due course. Earlier in November, LTI had executed definitive agreements for acquisition of Syncordis S.A. headquartered in Luxembourg along with its identified subsidiaries in Luxembourg, France, UK and India. Larsen & Toubro Infotech is a global technology consulting and digital solutions company, helping more than 250 clients succeed in a converging world. ...
522 GAIL India to import 5 MT of LNG from US next fiscal GAIL 12 Dec, 2017 GAIL (India) will import about 5 million tonnes (MT) of LNG from the US next fiscal, replacing the volumes the state-owned utility buys from the spot market. The company has contracted 5.8 MT per annum of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the US, some of which it has swapped - either by exchanging the gas with someone having it nearer to India or by time-swapping it. GAIL India is India’s principal Natural Gas Company with activities ranging from Gas Transmission and Marketing to Processing (for fractionating LPG, Propane, SBP Solvent and Pentane); transmission of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG); production and marketing of Petrochemicals like HDPE and LLDPE and leasing bandwidth in Telecommunications. ...
523 REC to raise $400 million through dollar bonds RECLTD 12 Dec, 2017 Rural Electrification Corporation (REC) will raise at least $400 million in three-year dollar money in the international bond markets. The issuer has given an initial price guidance of 175 basis points over the US treasury. REC is engaged in providing financial assistance to state electricity boards, state government departments and rural electric co-operatives for rural electrification projects as are sponsored by them. ...
524 Brent Oil Jumps Above $65 for First Time Since 2015 OTHER 12 Dec, 2017 Global benchmark Brent crude jumped above $65 a barrel for the first time in 2 1/2 years after one of the most important pipelines in the world was shut because of a crack. Futures rose as much as 1.1 percent in London, set for the highest close since June 10, 2015, after advancing 2 percent Monday. It will take about two weeks to repair the small hairline crack after was it was discovered on the North Sea Forties Pipeline System during a routine inspection, according to operator Ineos. In the U.S., crude stockpiles are forecast to drop a fourth week, a Bloomberg survey showed before government data Wednesday. Oil is heading for a second yearly gain as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies including Russia extend supply cuts through to the end of 2018. A strategy to exit the deal can be drafted in June if the market is no longer oversupplied by then, according to United Arab Emirates Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei. “If the market has some visibility on how long it’s going to take to repair the pipeline, that removes some of the uncertainty and reduces the risk premium,” said Ric Spooner, a Sydney-based analyst at CMC Markets. “The relatively high global inventories will possibly cap any rally we have from here.” Brent for February settlement rose as much as 70 cents to $65.39 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange, and was at $65.34 at 12:28 p.m. Hong Kong time. Prices gained $1.29 to $64.69 on Monday. The benchmark traded at a premium of $7.01 to February West Texas Intermediate, the highest level on a closing basis since May 2015. See also: Canadian Oil Collapses Amid Pipeline and Rail Bottleneck WTI for January delivery climbed as much as 36 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $58.35 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after rising 1.1 percent Monday. Total volume traded was about 41 percent above the 100-day average. The supplies that flow through the Forties Pipeline System are the single largest constituent part of so-called Dated Brent crude that helps to settle more than half the world’s physical oil prices. The shutdown forced Apache Corp. to suspend operations at its nearby Forties field. Oil-market news: U.S. crude stockpiles probably dropped by 2.89 million barrels last week, according to the Bloomberg survey before an Energy Information Administration report Wednesday....
525 Government Hints At Reviewing Rates In Top GST Bracket OTHER 12 Dec, 2017 After slashing the GST rates of over 200 items last month, the government hinted at reviewing levies on the items in the top 28 per cent tax bracket. On November 10, the GST Council, headed by Finance Minster Arun Jaitley, had lowered Goods and Services Tax rates on over 200 items, ranging from chewing gum to chocolates, to beauty products, wigs and wrist watches. As many as 178 items of daily use were shifted from the top tax bracket of 28 per cent to 18 per cent, and a uniform 5 per cent tax was prescribed for both air-conditioned and non- AC restaurants. "We have already reduced GST slabs of 12 per cent to 5 per cent and 5 per cent to zero per cent (on six items). Going forward, we may look at reviewing the 28 per cent slab," Union Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla said at an event here this evening. The GST Council had also pruned the list of items in the top 28 per cent slab to just 50 from 228 earlier. Following this major rejig in GST rates, Jaitley had hinted at a further scope for rationalisation of rates. "In four months, we have rationalised the 28 per cent slab. Such rationalisation (will happen in future) depending on revenue buoyancy," Jaitley said at an event last month. Shukla said by March next year, the government will ensure that all the processes under the GST are simplified. Also Read: GST: Is It Time To Abolish Reverse Charge, Defer E-Way Bill?...
526 L&T Infotech to offer blockchain solution powered by Microsoft Azure LT 12 Dec, 2017 Larsen & Toubro Infotech (LTI) will offer blockchain-based trade finance solution powered by Microsoft Azure. The solution tracks the flow of goods in a value chain, improving transparency across multiple entities involved. It enables accelerated adoption of distributed ledger technologies by bringing together LTI’s deep industry knowledge and blockchain capabilities together with Microsoft’s expertise in cloud-based solutions. Larsen & Toubro Infotech is a global technology consulting and digital solutions company, helping more than 250 clients succeed in a converging world. ...
527 Foreign airlines may be allowed to bid for Air India OTHER 10 Dec, 2017 India is likely to change rules to allow foreign airlines to bid for Air India Ltd as long as they have a local joint venture with an Indian partner as the government seeks to increase the number of suitors for the debt-laden national carrier. “Foreign airlines will be allowed to bid as per the current policy that’s applicable on all domestic airlines. That much we can confirm,” an official with knowledge of the matter said on condition of anonymity. Existing rules allow foreign airlines to own as much as 49% in an Indian airline, with the exception of Air India. With the change in rules, the government expects to make the sale of Air India, which has drawn interest from companies including the Tata group and InterGlobe Aviation Ltd (IndiGo), more competitive. The civil aviation ministry has conveyed the proposal to a group of ministers looking into Air India’s stake sale in a recent meeting. The panel led by finance minister Arun Jaitley also includes aviation minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju, transport minister Nitin Gadkari, railways minister Piyush Goyal and commerce minister Suresh Prabhu. The government will have to make several changes to existing rules before foreign airlines can bid for the national carrier. First, the department of industrial policy and promotion’s Press Note No. 6 (2012 Series) has to be amended to remove a clause that bars foreign investment in Air India. Second, international flying rights negotiated between two governments require respective airlines to have local effective control to avail of these rights. A change in control to a foreign airline will invalidate these rights. To ensure Air India does not face any issues, the government will retain a clause that says Air India cannot be 100% foreign-owned (even though foreign entities can own 100% of a private Indian airline, stakes of foreign airlines are capped at 49%). This, the aviation ministry believes, will allow “effective control” to be retained in India as the majority ownership will be with an Indian entity. The ministry has also told the department of investment and public asset management to speed up the process of the Air India privatisation, said the official cited earlier. The debt of Air India not linked to aircraft will also be hived off and will be likely placed in a special purpose vehicle, the official said. Air India had total debt of about Rs48,877 crore at the end of March 2017, of which about Rs17,360 crore were aircraft loans and Rs31,517 crore were working capital loans. EY, which is advising the government on the sale, has already started work and recently made a presentation to the aviation ministry. Last week, the aviation ministry said it has decided to sell Air India as one airline, including domestic and international operations. InterGlobe Aviation had said in July that it would be interested if Air India’s international operations are unbundled and put up for sale as it wants to strengthen its overseas network. Tata Sons Ltd executive chairman N. Chandrasekaran said in October that the group is considering buying Air India and has set up “a team which can definitely spend the time as soon as the details are out”. A former Air India chairman who did not wish to be named said it remains to be seen if government will allow deep-pocketed West Asia airlines to bid for Air India....
528 Foreign airlines may be allowed to bid for Air India OTHER 10 Dec, 2017 India is likely to change rules to allow foreign airlines to bid for Air India Ltd as long as they have a local joint venture with an Indian partner as the government seeks to increase the number of suitors for the debt-laden national carrier. “Foreign airlines will be allowed to bid as per the current policy that’s applicable on all domestic airlines. That much we can confirm,” an official with knowledge of the matter said on condition of anonymity. Existing rules allow foreign airlines to own as much as 49% in an Indian airline, with the exception of Air India. With the change in rules, the government expects to make the sale of Air India, which has drawn interest from companies including the Tata group and InterGlobe Aviation Ltd (IndiGo), more competitive. The civil aviation ministry has conveyed the proposal to a group of ministers looking into Air India’s stake sale in a recent meeting. The panel led by finance minister Arun Jaitley also includes aviation minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju, transport minister Nitin Gadkari, railways minister Piyush Goyal and commerce minister Suresh Prabhu. The government will have to make several changes to existing rules before foreign airlines can bid for the national carrier. First, the department of industrial policy and promotion’s Press Note No. 6 (2012 Series) has to be amended to remove a clause that bars foreign investment in Air India. Second, international flying rights negotiated between two governments require respective airlines to have local effective control to avail of these rights. A change in control to a foreign airline will invalidate these rights. To ensure Air India does not face any issues, the government will retain a clause that says Air India cannot be 100% foreign-owned (even though foreign entities can own 100% of a private Indian airline, stakes of foreign airlines are capped at 49%). This, the aviation ministry believes, will allow “effective control” to be retained in India as the majority ownership will be with an Indian entity. The ministry has also told the department of investment and public asset management to speed up the process of the Air India privatisation, said the official cited earlier. The debt of Air India not linked to aircraft will also be hived off and will be likely placed in a special purpose vehicle, the official said. Air India had total debt of about Rs48,877 crore at the end of March 2017, of which about Rs17,360 crore were aircraft loans and Rs31,517 crore were working capital loans. EY, which is advising the government on the sale, has already started work and recently made a presentation to the aviation ministry. Last week, the aviation ministry said it has decided to sell Air India as one airline, including domestic and international operations. InterGlobe Aviation had said in July that it would be interested if Air India’s international operations are unbundled and put up for sale as it wants to strengthen its overseas network. Tata Sons Ltd executive chairman N. Chandrasekaran said in October that the group is considering buying Air India and has set up “a team which can definitely spend the time as soon as the details are out”. A former Air India chairman who did not wish to be named said it remains to be seen if government will allow deep-pocketed West Asia airlines to bid for Air India. “In the past, it was a complete no-go zone,” he said....
529 Foreign airlines may be allowed to bid for Air India OTHER 10 Dec, 2017 India is likely to change rules to allow foreign airlines to bid for Air India Ltd as long as they have a local joint venture with an Indian partner as the government seeks to increase the number of suitors for the debt-laden national carrier. “Foreign airlines will be allowed to bid as per the current policy that’s applicable on all domestic airlines. That much we can confirm,” an official with knowledge of the matter said on condition of anonymity. Existing rules allow foreign airlines to own as much as 49% in an Indian airline, with the exception of Air India. With the change in rules, the government expects to make the sale of Air India, which has drawn interest from companies including the Tata group and InterGlobe Aviation Ltd (IndiGo), more competitive. The civil aviation ministry has conveyed the proposal to a group of ministers looking into Air India’s stake sale in a recent meeting. The panel led by finance minister Arun Jaitley also includes aviation minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju, transport minister Nitin Gadkari, railways minister Piyush Goyal and commerce minister Suresh Prabhu. The government will have to make several changes to existing rules before foreign airlines can bid for the national carrier. First, the department of industrial policy and promotion’s Press Note No. 6 (2012 Series) has to be amended to remove a clause that bars foreign investment in Air India. Second, international flying rights negotiated between two governments require respective airlines to have local effective control to avail of these rights. A change in control to a foreign airline will invalidate these rights. To ensure Air India does not face any issues, the government will retain a clause that says Air India cannot be 100% foreign-owned (even though foreign entities can own 100% of a private Indian airline, stakes of foreign airlines are capped at 49%). This, the aviation ministry believes, will allow “effective control” to be retained in India as the majority ownership will be with an Indian entity. The ministry has also told the department of investment and public asset management to speed up the process of the Air India privatisation, said the official cited earlier. The debt of Air India not linked to aircraft will also be hived off and will be likely placed in a special purpose vehicle, the official said. Air India had total debt of about Rs48,877 crore at the end of March 2017, of which about Rs17,360 crore were aircraft loans and Rs31,517 crore were working capital loans. EY, which is advising the government on the sale, has already started work and recently made a presentation to the aviation ministry. Last week, the aviation ministry said it has decided to sell Air India as one airline, including domestic and international operations. InterGlobe Aviation had said in July that it would be interested if Air India’s international operations are unbundled and put up for sale as it wants to strengthen its overseas network. Tata Sons Ltd executive chairman N. Chandrasekaran said in October that the group is considering buying Air India and has set up “a team which can definitely spend the time as soon as the details are out”. A former Air India chairman who did not wish to be named said it remains to be seen if government will allow deep-pocketed West Asia airlines to bid for Air India. “In the past, it was a complete no-go zone,” he said....
530 Suzuki’s electric vehicle tie-ups aim to aid Maruti, without the risks MARUTI 10 Dec, 2017 Suzuki Motor Corp. is trying to insulate its Indian unit from the risks involved in developing electric vehicles even as the outcome of such efforts will benefit Maruti Suzuki India Ltd directly. Driven by a policy push in India and a desire to keep its market share intact, Suzuki has formed two crucial partnerships—one where it will produce lithium ion batteries in collaboration with Denso Corp. and Toshiba Corp.; and another with the world’s largest automaker Toyota Motor Corp. to introduce electric vehicles in India by 2020. In both the cases, while there is no direct involvement of Maruti in any manner, the fact that the Indian company does not have any equity participation means that it is unlikely to face any risk even if India’s electric vehicle drive fails to take off. The role of Maruti in these partnerships may best be limited to that of a procurer of lithium ion battery packs (from the tripartite joint venture) and of electric vehicle platforms from the Toyota-Suzuki partnership. It will, of course, sell those to Indian customers if the electric vehicle market takes off in the country. “The whole tie-up between Suzuki and Toyota is specifically for the Indian market. Hence, it is solely going to benefit Maruti. The Gujarat plant is also operated (and owned) by Suzuki but it has benefitted only Maruti,” R.C. Bhargava, chairman of Maruti Suzuki, told Mint. While the equity structure of the Toyota-Suzuki partnership is not known, in case of the joint venture for battery packs, the initial capital expenditure will be 20 billion Japanese yen (around $184 million). The joint venture company will be led by Suzuki, which will hold a 50% share. Toshiba and Denso will have 40% and 10%, respectively, Suzuki Motor said in a statement. The collaboration between Toyota and Suzuki will also work in the areas such as environment-friendly technologies, hybrids, fuel cell tech, safety and connected technologies. The two companies will also source component from each other as a part of the agreement. According to Puneet Gupta, associate director of consultancy firm IHS Markit, Suzuki has played it very safe to get maximum return in the country. “It’s a smart move to invest in a technology that will help them stay relevant in the in the future when Suzuki on its own cannot expect to develop these technologies. Maruti being the most important subsidiary of Suzuki now, its interests have to be guarded,” said Gupta. Suzuki has adopted a similar strategy earlier, albeit for a different purpose, when it stopped Maruti Suzuki from making an investment of as much as $2 billion in Gujarat for capacity expansion and went ahead to invest its own cash to build the facilities. Suzuki Motor Gujarat (SMG), another unit of the Japanese company, has a contract manufacturing agreement with India’s largest carmaker under which Maruti Suzuki buys produce from SMG at cost price. The move, initially criticized by minority shareholders, left Maruti Suzuki with a lot of cash and allowed it to expand its marketing and sales infrastructure rapidly. At the end of September, Maruti Suzuki was sitting on a cash pile of more than Rs30,000 crore—enough ammunition required to see through any conventional disruption in the Indian market. Ever since Suzuki’s investment in Gujarat, Maruti Suzuki share price has jumped 73% and on Friday it rose 2.11% to a record high of Rs9,072, pegging its market capitalization at Rs2.74 trillion, exceeding India’s largest lender State Bank of India’s Rs2.71 trillion valuation. Maruti Suzuki’s factories for internal combustion engine vehicles in Gurgaon and Manesar are already running to capacity and offer little room for a separate assembly line for electric vehicles in the foreseeable future. The factories owned by Suzuki Motor Gujarat will have six assembly lines, which are expected to produce 1.5 million vehicles by 2025. Of these, one line is fully functional and Suzuki has started work on the second. According to several people Mint spoke with, all of whom spoke on condition of anonymity given the sensitivity of the matter, the partnership between Suzuki and Toyota could see the latter providing technology support in terms of motor, powertrain and back-end configuration, while Suzuki’s role may come in body building, painting and assembly....
531 Amazon India posts 67% sales volume growth in September quarter OTHER 10 Dec, 2017 Amazon India said its gross sales volume rose 67% from a year earlier in the September quarter, as the online retailer continued to grow at a rapid pace and keep larger rival Flipkart in its sights. Gross sales by value jumped 72% during the quarter, numbers shared by Amazon India with Mint show. The broader online retail market is estimated to be growing at roughly 25-30%, according to brokerages and experts tracking e-commerce in India. Gross sales refers to the value of goods sold on a platform. Amazon India also claimed it grew much faster than Flipkart in April-September, saying gross sales rose 66% in the six months. That figure is considerably higher than the figures that were revealed in the recent half-yearly report from one of Flipkart’s largest investors, Naspers, which indicated that Flipkart grew 43% during that period, as Mint reported on 1 December. A Flipkart spokesperson clarified that the figure cited by Naspers included “a time lag” and that the firm’s sales actually grew by “at least 80%” in April-September. “Flipkart continues to outpace the industry and our growth has accelerated significantly during the July-September quarter on the back of a very strong festive season. This report actually refers to the January-June period and, as all growth data, has a lag of three months so the comparison isn’t like-for-like or relevant,” the spokesperson said in an email. Neither Amazon nor Flipkart disclosed their exact gross sales figures. While the latest figures from Amazon indicate it is successfully keeping pace with Flipkart, Amazon’s sales volume growth actually slowed considerably from the preceding two quarters, when it grew 85% and 88%, respectively. Two Amazon executives attributed the fall to a rise in big-ticket purchases, as customers typically buy high-value products such as large appliances and smartphones during the festival season. Amazon’s impressive growth rate is also partly due to the base effect—a year ago, its overall sales were much lower, when Flipkart enjoyed a larger base. Amazon’s numbers also need to be taken in the context of its recent festive season battle with Flipkart. Mint reported on 27 September that Flipkart beat Amazon during the face-off, generating gross sales of over Rs5,000 crore in its five-day Big Billion Days sale, while Amazon generated gross sales of Rs2,500- 2,700 crore in its four-day Great Indian Festival sale. Amazon has repeatedly disputed that it lags Flipkart (excluding subsidiaries Myntra and Jabong) and said it is consistently well ahead of Flipkart on metrics such as app downloads, desktop visits and mobile website visits. For Amazon, its Prime subscription service has also proved to be a massive lever of growth, especially in top-tier cities in India, with Prime accounting for at least a third of all its orders....
532 Thyssenkrupp makes offer to workers for Tata Steel deal TATASTEEL 10 Dec, 2017 Thyssenkrupp AG has offered workers commitments on jobs and investments to get union backing for its deal with Tata Steel to merge their European steel operations, several people close to labour union IG Metall said. Details of the offer are to be discussed at a meeting of management and labour representatives on Tuesday, the people told Reuters on Sunday. German industrial group Thyssenkrupp and Tata Steel Ltd agreed in September to merge their European steel operations, creating the continent’s second largest steelmaker with revenues of €15 billion ($17.7 billion). But workers at Thyssenkrupp fiercely oppose the Tata Steel merger deal, concerned more steel jobs will be lost on top of the 2,000 already announced. IG Metall has demanded 10-year guarantees for jobs, plants and investments and has set a 22 December deadline for an agreement. German weekly Bild am Sonntag had on Sunday cited Thyssenkrupp personnel chief Oliver Burkhard as saying in an internal memo that the industrial group was prepared to make commitments on future investments and job security. “With our proposal, we want to secure jobs at the future joint venture into the next decade,” it had quoted him as saying. Thyssenkrupp chief executive Heinrich Hiesinger hopes to reach a final deal with Tata Steel in early 2018 but that depends on whether he can get it passed by Thyssenkrupp’s supervisory board, where labour leaders hold half of the seats. “If the employer’s side wants to move forward now, then that’s a signal to which we will respond,” Knut Giesler, the head of IG Metall in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia said....
533 The rise and stunning fall of Unitech UNITECH 09 Dec, 2017 From being India's largest listed real estate company in 2007 to being taken over by the government, it has been a fall from grace for Unitech. Within a decade, the company that once boasted of pan-India presence with marquee projects is now being hounded by regulators, lenders and homebuyers alike. After charting a stellar growth path during the 2003-08 boom, the Chandra family-promoted company's fortune took a turn for the worse in 2008 that saw Unitech Wireless .. one of the subsidiaries of Unitech, bidding and securing pan-India telecom licence for 2G spectrum. The same year, Unitech sold over 67 per cent stake in this company to Norway's Telenor for over Rs 6,000 crore for a stake that it had acquired for Rs 1,650 crore under the scandalous first-come, first-served telecom policy. While the company made a killing by flipping its "investment", it eventually proved to be a thorn in the flesh and continues to trouble the realtor. In a crackdown followed by the Comptroller and Auditor General's report on the 2G scam, Unitech's Sanjay Chandra was arrested along with politicians and other corporates. Late 2008, after the global liquidity crisis following the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the red-hot Indian property market started to wind down. Most realty developers were gripped by a liquidity squeeze, which continued to haunt realtors for years. Unitech's problems worsened with the promoters being in dock for the 2G scam on one side and liquidity issues on the other. The market cooled off and sales dipped, forcing Unitech to slow down construction due to cash flow cash flow constraints. Following this, construction work at most of its projects stalled that resulted in frustrated homebuyers and small investors filing cases. Like many other real estate companies buoyed by the boom, Unitech too expanded very quickly between 2005 and 2007, and launched multiple projects across the country. But when the cash crunch hit and sales flagged, the projects became a liability. As things stand today, Unitech's market capitalisation stands at Rs 1,906 crore with the promoters having pledged around 73 per cent of their 17.92 per cent stake in the company. According to the company's 2016-17 annual report, it has delivered 5.18 million sq ft and has 33.16 million sq ft under development. ...
534 Biocon gets nod to transfer biosimilars business BIOCON 09 Dec, 2017 Biocon has received its shareholders’ approval to the resolution for transfer of biosimilars business by way of a slump sale to group entity Biocon Biologics India. The resolution for transfer of Biosimilars business of the company by way of a slump sale as ‘Going Concern’ to Biocon Biologics India has been passed by the members of the company with requisite majority. The special resolution was passed with 99.99 per cent of votes polled through postal ballot. Biocon is India’s largest and Asia’s leading Biotechnology Company with a strategic focus on biopharmaceuticals and research services. It is a fully integrated, innovation-driven biopharma enterprise offering affordable solutions for chronic diseases to patient's worldwide. ...
535 Power Grid enters into agreement with AIIB for $100 million loan: Report POWERGRID 09 Dec, 2017 Power Grid Corporation of India has reportedly entered into a loan agreement with Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) for $100 million for funding of high voltage direct current (HVDC) bipole link between Western Region (Raigarh, Chhattisgarh) and Southern Region (Pugalur, Tamil Nadu)- North Trichur Kerala Scheme 2: AC System Strengthening at Pugalur end. Power Grid Corporation of India (PGCIL) is an Indian state-owned electric utilities company headquartered in Gurgaon, India. Power Grid transmits about 50% of the total power generated in India on its transmission network. ...
536 Lupin recalls Duloxetine delayed-release capsules from US market LUPIN 08 Dec, 2017 Lupin is recalling 1.11 lakh units of Duloxetine delayed-release capsules from the US market. The company is recalling 1,11,648 units of Duloxetine delayed-release capsules USP, in the strength of 30 mg, on account of failed dissolution specification. The drug was manufactured by Lupin in Goa plant. The ongoing voluntary nationwide recall is a class III recall. Lupin is an innovation led transnational pharmaceutical company developing and delivering a wide range of branded & generic formulations, biotechnology products and APIs globally. ...
537 TVS Motor acquires 15% stake in electric two-wheeler startup Ultraviolette for Rs5cr TVSMOTOR 08 Dec, 2017 TVS Motor (TVS) bought 14.78% stake in Ultraviolette Automotive Pvt. Ltd, a Bengaluru-based startup working on electric two-wheelers and energy infrastructure, for ~Rs5cr. Ultraviolette Automotive was incorporated in December 2015 and has reported Rs3.2lakh revenue for FY17. It has tested three prototypes, however, has not launched an electric two-wheeler yet. Additionally, TVS is developing an electric scooter code-named U218 in order to compete in the category with players like Bajaj Auto Ltd, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India Pvt. Ltd, Mahindra 2 Wheelers Ltd and India Yamaha Motor Pvt. Ltd, which are all set to launch electric two-wheelers in 2018, as per the media reports. This acquisition would provide the expertise exposure in the electric two-wheeler segment. TVS Motors enjoys 14.2% market share in the Indian two-wheeler industry. Domestic sales contribute 83% of company’s revenue and exports contribute the rest. Domestic sale of scooters and motorcycles are the major contributors to revenue with 26% and 27% share respectively followed by moped at 17%. The company also manufactures three-wheelers, however, it only contributes 1% to the total revenue. TVS Motor Company Ltd ended at Rs748.6, up by Rs14.5 or 1.98% from its previous closing of Rs734.1 on the BSE. The scrip had opened at Rs737 and touched a high and low of Rs753.5 and Rs 737 respectively. A total of 9.61 lakh shares were traded on the counter. The current market cap of the company is Rs35575.49 crore....
538 Glenmark Pharma begins clinical trial of anti-myeloma drug GLENMARK 08 Dec, 2017 Glenmark Pharma today said the first patient has been dosed in a phase-1 clinical trial of GBR 1342, an investigational antibody for treatment of multiple myeloma. In May this year, the US health regulator had cleared Glenmark Pharma's investigational new drug application to initiate phase-1 study of GBR 1342. GBR 1342 is an investigational new drug from the company's immuno-oncology portfolio. "This first-in-human, open-label study's primary objective is to assess the safety and tolerability of increasing doses of GBR 1342 in multiple myeloma patients until a maximum tolerated dose is reached," Glenmark Pharma said in a BSE filing. The additional study objectives include assessment of biomarkers, immunogenicity and additional measures of anti- tumour activity, it added. "Glenmark is committed to a new model of drug discovery that emphasises quality and a highly efficient approach to clinical development, and this milestone for GBR 1342 is an example of this approach in action," Glenmark Pharmaceuticals President and Chief Medical Officer Fred Grossman said. The stock of Glenmark was trading at Rs 536, up 0.63 per cent, on the BSE....
539 Cadila Healthcare’s arm receives final approval from USFDA for Clozapine Tablets CADILAHC 08 Dec, 2017 Cadila Healthcare’s wholly owned subsidiary - Zydus Pharmaceuticals (USA) Inc., has received the final approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) to market Clozapine Tablets in strengths of 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, and 200 mg. The drug is used to treat schizophrenia. It will be manufactured at the group’s formulations manufacturing facility at SEZ, Ahmedabad. The group now has more than 175 approvals and has so far filed over 310 ANDAs since the commencement of the filing process in FY 2003-04. Zydus Cadila is an innovative, global pharmaceutical company that discovers, develops, manufactures and markets a broad range of healthcare therapies. ...
540 Tata Motors rolls out first batch of electric-Tigor for EESL from Sanand facility TATAMOTORS 07 Dec, 2017 Tata Motors has rolled out the first batch of the electric variant of its compact sedan Tigor from its Sanand facility in Gujarat. The first batch of e-Tigors are being produced for the Energy Efficiency Services (EESL), which had placed an order for 10,000 electric sedans in October, and are part of the first 350 orders that the company had won in the first phase. Tata Motors is India's largest automobile company. Through subsidiaries and associate companies, Tata Motors has operations in the UK, South Korea, Thailand, South Africa and Indonesia. Among them is Jaguar Land Rover, the business comprising the two iconic British brands. ...
541 L&T’s arm bags order worth Rs 1,600 crore from HPCL LT 07 Dec, 2017 Larsen & Toubro’s (L&T) wholly-owned subsidiary - L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering (LTHE) has won an order worth over Rs 1,600 crore from Hindustan Petroleum Corporation, Visakhapatnam Refinery (HPCL). The project is a part of HPCL Visakh Refinery Modernization Project (VRMP) and involves Engineering, Procurement, Construction and Commissioning of 3.053 MMTPA Full Conversion Hydrocracker Project. The order reinforces L&T’s unique capability to deliver 'design to build' engineering and construction solutions across the hydrocarbon spectrum. Larsen & Toubro is a major technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services conglomerate, with global operations. ...
542 TVS Motor rides into super-premium bike segment with new Apache RR 310 TVSMOTOR 07 Dec, 2017 TVS Motor has launched the Apache RR 310 marking its entry into super premium motorcycles. With the launch of the ?2.05-lakh Apache RR 310, TVS Motor also storms the bastion of Royal Enfield Motors, which is a dominant player in fast-growing above-250cc to 350cc segment with annual volumes of more than six lakh units. The price of Apache RR 310, the company’s most powerful and expensive bike so far, will vary from State to State. Bookings will start at select 50 dealerships initially and the delivery will begin by the month-end. The new bike, is the first product out of TVS Motor-BMW Motorrad alliance formed in April 2013 to design, make and sell sub-500 cc motorcycles for India and emerging markets. It will strengthen its position in the sports category of the premium bike market. TVS so far was in the up to-200cc segment in the Apache series. It is a leader in the above-150cc to 200cc segment with a market share of 46 per cent (2.36 lakh units during April-October 2017) with its Apache brand. “Apache RR 310 is the most advanced product in our portfolio and it is built on our 35 years of experience in the race-track. This bike has been designed to be a global offering and will be a true example of make-in-India for the world. We are confident this will improve our growth and market share in the premium segment,” Sudarshan Venu, Joint Managing Director, said during the global launch of the bike here. The new Apache powered by a new engine, developed jointly by TVS and BMW, will churn out 34 PS@9700 rpm and 27.3 NM@7700 rpm. It will boast of a top speed of 160 kmph, and acceleration from 0-to-60 kmph in 2.9 seconds. The company has spent close to ?400 crore on the Apache RR 310 project. “We are targeting to sell about 10,000 units in the first full year,” said K N Radhakrishnan, President & CEO, TVS Motor Company. The company’s two-wheelers are shipped to about 60 countries and in most of the markets the Apache RR 310 will be sold shortly. The new bike is produced out of TVS Motor’s Hosur factory, which has already been producing and exporting G 310 R bikes (BMW version of the new bike) for export requirements of BMW since last year....
543 GAIL capex may grow by 55% next fiscal GAIL 07 Dec, 2017 GAIL (India) Ltd’s capital expenditure is expected to grow by over 55 per cent in the next financial year. Speaking to reporters at the sidelines of an event to announce the Oil and Gas HSE (Health and Safety Executive) Conclave 2018, Ashutosh Karnatak, Director (Projects), GAIL (India), said: “Next year, capex is ?6,000 crore for pipelines in the financial year 2018-2019. This investment is to construct another 2,500 km gas pipelines by 2020.” Pipeline addition capital expenditure for the current financial year is expected at ?3,800 crore. This will include laying pipelines in East and South India. “Kochi-Mangalore pipeline of 380 km length is already under execution," he added. Karnataka also said that the company is exploring the use of drones to aid in monitoring its pipeline network. He said: “One drone has been hired on a pilot basis for aerial surveillance of the Hazira-Vijaipur-Jagdishpur pipeline in Madhya Pradesh.” These drones will be used to detect encroachments around pipelines. Under the pilot project, this drone will fly over the pipeline, capturing pictures and data that will be analysed to detect any potential hazard....
544 Cipla’s American Dream CIPLA 07 Dec, 2017 After a late entry into the United States, pharmaceutical company Cipla Ltd. now expects that market to contribute about a quarter of its total sale in the next 3-5 years. Cipla has a reasonably good product pipeline which will unlock value for the company, Global Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Umang Vohra told BloombergQuint in an interview. The company has mainly focused on India and Africa so far. The U.S. is still a nascent market and contributes 15 percent to its annual sales. But the “real trajectory” for Cipla starts now, Vohra said. The impact of the three big, recent launches – generic versions of Renvela, Dacogen and Pulmicort – will be seen mainly in the fourth quarter and the the company will fare better in the second half as compared to the first, he added. The market for Renvela is crowded but Dacogen and Pulmicort are fairly large opportunities for the company. Pulmicort can be a $20-25 million opportunity while Dacogen can be slightly lower than $20-25 million. The opportunity of $40-50 million from these two drugs on a U.S. base of $400 million is large. Umang Vohra, Global CEO & MD, Cipla Vohra believes that with increased competition and pricing issues, a margin of 22-24 percent could be the new normal for the pharmaceutical industry as compared to 25-28 percent earlier. Cipla’s margin currently stands at 19 percent and Vohra expects that number to expand to 20-22 percent in the near term. Achieving the new normal will take another 2-3 years, he said. The management is confident of where the company is headed despite the weak financials it’s reported for the past few years. Vohra said a 10 percent revenue growth “is acceptable” and will look at cutting costs to expand operating margins in the subsequent quarters. Here are other key takeaways from the interview. On Domestic Markets Expects 13-15 percent growth in the domestic market. On Drug Launches Still guiding for one drug launch per quarter. On Regulatory Issues No pending regulatory issues at any of its plants Received Establishment Inspection Report for all plants inspected by the USFDA The U.S. drug regulator’s audit for Indore was a product specific one On U.K. Markets Seretide did not pan out in U.K. as the company had expected. Will get share if pushed by competition as they are currently not being reasonable with pricing. On M&A Will look at acquiring speciality businesses in India, U.S. or South Africa. Will consider acquisitions in derma or CNS space in India. Don’t think Cipla is up for sale....
545 Hatsun Agro Products to raise up to Rs 900 crore HATSUN 07 Dec, 2017 Hatsun Agro Products has received an approval for raising funds by way of issue of securities to the existing equity shareholders of the company on a rights basis aggregating up to Rs 900 crore. The board of directors at its meeting held on December 6, 2017 has approved the same. Hatsun Agro Products, India's largest private sector dairy, sells liquid milk under the brand name Arokya, ice creams under the brand Arun Icecreams, and a wide range of dairy products under the brand Hatsun. ...
546 RCom in settlement talks with China Development Bank: Report RCOM 07 Dec, 2017 Reliance Communications (RCom) reportedly is in settlement talks with China Development Bank (CDB), one of its largest creditors, even as the Chinese government banker sought to club its insolvency petition against the Anil Ambani-led company with other petitions seeking the same. CDB is looking to recover $1.78 billion, or about Rs 11,460 crore, of dues the debt-laden telecom operator battling multiple insolvency cases. The Chinese bank, accounting for 37.11% of RCom’s total secured debt, moved NCLT in November against both RCom and its subsidiary Reliance Telecom since the former was the guarantor and the latter the principal borrower. Moreover, NCLT will take a call on December 18 if the insolvency petition should be admitted. Reliance Communications is India’s foremost and truly integrated telecommunications service provider. ...
547 Tata Communications enters into partnership with DRVR TATACOMM 06 Dec, 2017 Tata Communications has entered into partnership with International fleet management application provider, DRVR whereby the latter will help achieve its objective of making Asia’s vehicle fleets the smartest and most cost-efficient in the world. Leveraging Tata Communications’ mobility solutionMOVE, DRVR can convert information collected from vehicles across Thailand, Myanmar, Philippines and Indonesia into actionable insights to help drive efficiencies and improve cost savings through smarter fleet management. Tata Communications along with its subsidiaries is a leading global provider of A New World of Communications. ...
548 More Chinese lenders plan to file insolvency cases against RCom RCOM 06 Dec, 2017 Hong Kong/Mumbai/Beijing: Two major Chinese lenders plan to support a move by China Development Bank to put Reliance Communications Ltd (RCom) into insolvency court as they seek to recover about $2 billion in debt, said three people with knowledge of the matter. Last month, China Development Bank began insolvency proceedings against RCom, which has been trying for months to restructure its debt via a debt-for-equity swap. Now, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), the country’s biggest-listed lender by assets, and Export-Import Bank of China, plan to back CDB, the people said. The combined effort would be a rare tilt against an Indian conglomerate by a group of Chinese lenders, keen to boost their presence in India. And it would also further jeopardize Anil Ambani-controlled RCom’s efforts to restructure out of court. RCom last week said the majority of its creditors will oppose China Development Bank’s insolvency bid. With total debt of Rs45,733 crore as of end March, RCom is the most-leveraged of all listed telecom carriers in India. The company has not reported its debt level since then. The China Development Bank petition seeking insolvency proceeding against RCom is not on behalf of all three Chinese banks, but the banks are “on the same page”, said one of the people with knowledge of the development. If needed, the other two banks will file their own petitions at India’s National Company Law Tribunal, which hears bankruptcy cases in the country, the person said. Two other people with knowledge of the Chinese banks’ plans also confirmed that ICBC and Export-Import Bank would seek to join the insolvency bid unless the parties reach an out-of-court settlement. The people spoke to Reuters on condition they not be named due to the sensitivity of the matter. RCom did not immediately respond to a request for comment. ICBC declined to comment, while the other two Chinese banks and the mobile carrier’s top Indian lender, State Bank of India, did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Debt restructuring There has not been any consensus yet on whether Indian banks would oppose China Development Bank’s petition as the Joint Lenders’ Forum, that comprises all banks that have lent to RCom, is yet to meet following the filing of the insolvency plea, according to two people aware of the matter. The people also said that there is no concrete mechanism for other lenders to block insolvency proceedings initiated against a creditor by one of their peers. An out-of-the-court settlement between RCom and the Chinese lenders would be “very difficult” from the Chinese banks’ perspective as they were frustrated that RCom had not kept promises it made previously on debt repayment, one of the people said. In June, RCom’s group of largely domestic lenders agreed to restructure its debt under the Indian central bank’s Strategic Debt Restructuring (SDR) rule that allows banks to own a majority stake in a company by swapping part of their loans for equity. That plan hinged on two deals that RCom hoped would cut its debt load by 60%, but both deals fell apart after months of talks. Since then, RCom has pledged to do a new asset sales programme to repay debt. Bankers have also held off on the debt-equity swap with RCom’s stock falling to less than half of the agreed swap price. RCom said last week the lenders who planned to oppose the CDB insolvency bid had appointed Indian law firm J. Sagar Associates to represent them. But Dina Wadia, joint managing partner at the law firm, told Reuters that her firm’s mandate, as of Saturday, was only to act for the group of lenders in the SDR process. RCom did not respond to Wadia’s statement. Reuters Reliance Group companies have sued HT Media Ltd, Mint’s publisher, and nine others in the Bombay high court over a 2 October 2014 front-page story that they have disputed. HT Media is contesting the case....
549 Metals stocks lose shine on correction in commodities prices OTHER 06 Dec, 2017 Metals stocks lost shine on Wednesday following correction in commodities prices in international market as investors raised doubts over China demand for metals. The Nifty Metal was biggest loser among sectoral indices, falling 1.5 percent as Hindustan Zinc, Hindalco Industries, Vedanta, Hindustan Copper, Tata Steel, Jindal Steel, NALCO, SAIL and MOIL rallied 1-3 percent. opper prices fell 3 percent and steel prices declined 2 percent while aluminium prices dropped 1.5 percent. Last week, Kotak in its report said despite disappointment on immediate closures, it believes aluminum market fundamentals are set to improve led by supply tightness building outside China, and restricted output growth in China. The aluminum inventories outside China have fallen back to 2009 levels due to the continued supply deficit since the last six years, it added. It feels the aluminum markets outside China will report a deficit of close to 2 million tonnes in 2017 (from 31,000 tons in 2012) due to limited supply additions and strong growth in demand—for 9MCY17, the world ex-China demand growth at 3.6 percent (to 23.7 million tonnes) exceeded supply growth of 1 percent (to 22.4 million tonnes)....
550 Idea-Vodafone merger likely to close 6 months earlier, by March-April IDEA 06 Dec, 2017 KOLKATA: The Idea-Vodafone merger is likely to close faster, as early as next March-April, six months before the more conservative September 2018 timeline recently suggested by Vodafone Group CEO Vittorio Colao. “Management expects all approvals for the merger to come in by March/April 2018,” Bank of America-Merrill Lynch said in a note, citing its recent meeting with the Idea CellularBSE 0.32 % leadership. ET has seen a copy of this note. Vodafone India and Kumar Birla-led Idea, the country’s second and third-largest telcos, are merging their businesses to create India’s biggest phone company with over 400 million customers. Court and telecom department (DoT) approvals for the merger are pending, with the anti-trust body having cleared it already. The merger is crucial for both telcos who have been struggling individually to take on new entrant Reliance Jio, losing subscribers and slumping to losses. But the merged entity is set to initially ring in Rs 2,700 crore (about $415 million) of cost savings by halving tenancies in some 70,000-odd overlapping sites where both telcos have the same 2G gear. The merged entity, however, would have to pay exit penalties for this, although this would be classified into a “one-time dis-synergy line item that would come below operating income” or Ebitda. “While the management is guiding for a total savings of $10 billion after integration costs and spectrum liberalization payments, we estimate total synergy benefits of $7 billion in our merged entity estimates,” the brokerage said. Bulk of the cost savings, the US brokerage house said, would come in the second year, post-merger completion, once the Idea-Vodafone combined entity removes overlapping 3G and 4G network gear that would result in sizeable power savings. The overall magnitude of cost benefits, it said, would hinge “on where the spectrum is contiguous or non-contiguous”. Analysts also expect the merged entity to start freeing up their 2G and 3G airwaves in the 1800 Mhz and 2100 Mhz bands respectively for 4G deployment to be in a position to launch VoLTE-based 4G services in FY19, which would enable voice traffic to be moved from 2G to a mix of 3G/4G spectrum. In fact, the US brokerage does not expect the Idea-Vodafone merged entity to invest in expensive 4G spectrum in the 700 MHz band for the next couple of years, saying it is likely to focus on refarming existing 2G/3G spectrum holdings to 4G. More so, since spectrum supply is higher than demand in a telecom sector that is rapidly consolidating down to three strong players, following the massive market disruption caused by Jio’s launch of 4G services a little over a year ago. The likelihood of 700 MHz purchases after two years, it said, would hinge on “the balance sheet strength (of the merged entity) and if competitors like Jio/Bharti have purchased such spectrum”. But in the run-up to the merger, the US brokerage house said both Idea and Vodafone on a standalone basis remained “vulnerable to market share losses,” despite their recent active infrastructure sharing pact, especially since rivals Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio Infocomm are more aggressive in terms of capex deployment and customer acquisitions. It added that any material delay in the merger closure would make both telcos more vulnerable to market share losses. Unlike Airtel and Jio, Idea and Vodafone