India business news headlines weekly roundup 11th to 15th Feb 2019

India business news headlines weekly roundup 11 to 15th feb 2019 :

Corporates

  • PNB will e-auction 4,000 properties to recover loans. The bank wants to recover around Rs.26,000 crores during FY 2018-19 and has recovered Rs.16,600 crores till 31st Dec.
  • Bombay HC has refused interim relief to Reliance Power against share sale by Edelweiss.
  • IndiGo shall not operate its scheduled 30 flights daily for the rest of February due to the shortage of pilots. Operations are expected to be normalized by 31st March.
  • Twitter is working to resolve the problem causing continuous fluctuation of ‘Like’ and ‘Retweet’ counts on its platform.

India business news headlines weekly roundup 11th to 15th Feb 2019

  • Haldiram’s is exploring a potential partnership or stake sale to Kellogg Company.
  • The board of ABB India has given ‘in principle’ approval to segregate power grids business from its other businesses.
  • BSNL employees have announced a three-day nationwide strike for 4G spectrum allotment and wage revision. Central trade unions have also extended support.
  • MC Aviation shall decide after 21st Feb on taking back five planes leased out to Jet Airways. The airlines have dues pending since Oct.18.
  • Apollo Hospitals founders Prathap C. Reddy and his family wants to sell their entire 41% stake in Apollo Munich for Rs.1,200 crore in six months. Proceeds will be used to repay part of the debt raised by pledging Apollo Hospital’s equity as collateral.
  • Air India has asked govt to refinance its Rs.20,000 crores debt by 31st March. This would include refinancing from banks and utilization of debt instruments like NCDs.
  • The government will launch an additional offering of Bharat-22 Exchange Traded Fund on February 14 to raise more than Rs.3,500 crores. It has so far raised Rs.22,900 crores through the Bharat-22 ETF.
  • Swiggy has expanded into delivering items such as groceries, vegetables and medicines through Swiggy Stores. The new service will be part of the same app and will cater to on-demand deliveries across categories. It’s running a pilot in Gurugram and shall soon start services to other cities.
  • Boeing has appointed Salil Gupte as its India head effective March 18. He is currently serving as VP in Boeing Capital Corp.
  • To prevent mounting losses at BSNL, the govt has asked BSNL to look at all the options including a revival plan, disinvestment and even closure. BSNL’s share in total PSU’s losses is around 25%.
  • Trying to boost its sales, Amazon has slashed commission charges from sellers by around 35% on fashion products and by 50% on certain FMCG categories.
  • L&T Hydrocarbon has won an over Rs.7,000 crores order from Algeria’s Sonatrach for setting up three central processing facilities in their country.
  • Directorate of Revenue Intelligence has issued a notice to IBM for Rs.620 Crores for unpaid duties on the equipment imported into India.

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Some more news from Corporates

  • BlueStone Jewellery is planning to raise around $25 million in fresh funding to expand its offline presence. It wants to open 300 stores in the next three years.
  • Supreme Court is suspecting cartelisation as Amrapali’s two 5-star hotels remain unsold in the auction. The court had ordered auction of these properties to recover debt from the Amrapali Group.
  • Sebi is looking into allegations and counter-allegations related to the sale of pledged shares of Reliance Group’s three listed companies by L&T and Edelweiss Group.
  • The government will sell part of its stake (up to 3%) in Axis Bank held through SUUTI to raise up to Rs.5,316 crore.
  • NTPC has signed a term loan agreement with SBI for Rs.5,000 crores.
  • KKR’s NBFC arm, KKR India Asset Finance, has invested Rs.725 crore in Embassy group’s upcoming commercial real estate project in Bengaluru. As of February 2019, the NBFC has invested more than USD 1.5 billion in India’s realty sector.
  • MTNL has raised a claim of around Rs.500 Crores on DoT under various heads including reimbursement of employees related payment and providing communication services.
  • Malvinder Singh has filed a police complaint against his former associates Sunil and Sanjay Godhwani and some officials of Ligare Aviation for allegedly defrauding his firm Malav Holdings of Rs.30 crores. One of the charges is sanctioning bogus and fake invoices for fictitious expenses.

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  • PVR is looking to raise up to $100 million through QIP and has appointed Kotak Mahindra Capital and CLSA to manage the fundraising process.
  • PE fund Indus Capital has moved NCLT against three subsidiaries of Uppal Housing citing oppression of investors, mismanagement and diversion of funds.
  • KKR & Co. and General Atlantic have shown interest in investing in PhonePe. Its existing investors, Tencent and Tiger Global are also likely to invest.
  • In view of the new FDI norms, Amazon has reportedly indefinitely put on hold its plans to buy a stake in the Future Group. It is also said to be reassessing stake buy in the ‘More’ retail chain.
  • Karbonn Mobiles has started operations at its Tirupati manufacturing unit, set up with an investment of Rs.200 Crores.
  • SBI and OBC Bank have put various accounts on sale to recover around Rs.5,740 Crores.
  • Britannia is looking to set up a separate unit to invest in startups and emerging companies.
  • Hotel chains across the boards are looking to increase tariff due to improved occupancy and favourable demand-supply equation.
  • Airtel has filed a contempt petition against DoT in Supreme Court for failing to return Rs.298 Crores despite repeated orders.
  • Last minute airfares have almost doubled on Bengaluru and Mumbai routes due to the closure of runways. Airlines have been forced to cancel or reschedule flights due to high airfares. There are no flight movements at the Mumbai airport between 11 am to 5 pm every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

More in India business news headlines weekly roundup 11th to 15th Feb. 19

Policies & Practices

  • Frustrated that the WhatsApp has been used to incite violence and spread pornography, the government is pressing WhatsApp to allow more official oversight even if that means giving officials access to protected or encrypted messages.
  • Sebi has relaxed norms for non-resident Indians to transfer shares to relatives. They can now transfer the shares without submitting the PAN card.

M&As and tie-ups

  • Brookfield is close to acquiring most of the assets of Hotel Leelaventure. Mumbai hotel is not part of the deal.
  • 7-Eleven, the world’s largest convenience store chain, is in advance talks with Future Group to enter India.
  • Some of the world’s largest strategic investors, such as Swiss Re, Liberty General, Advent, Blackstone Group have been approached to buy a 26% stake in SBI General Insurance for Rs.3400 Crores.
  • Lohia Group has acquired Israel’s Light & Strong, a maker of carbon and glass fibre composite components for the defence and aerospace sectors for an undisclosed amount.
  • Skechers US has bought over 49% stake of Future Group in their joint venture for Rs.580 Crores. Skechers will now run the Indian operations independently.
  • Manipal Group and TPG Capital combined have reportedly entered into a three-month exclusivity period with Medanta for negotiations on its acquisition.
  • KKR has completed the acquisition of 60% stake in environment solution provider Ramky Enviro for Rs.3630 crores.

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Start-up world, funds and fundings

  • Dr Agarwal’s Health Care has raised Rs.270 crores funding from Temasek. The firm runs 76 hospitals in 63 cities across 13 Indian states as also run around 12 hospitals in 10 African nations.
  • Oyo Hotels has received $100 Million in funding from Didi Chuxing of China.
  • Allianz Investment has invested $200 million in Edelweiss’s stressed assets fund. This investment is part of commitments worth $1.3 billion Edelweiss secured for its EISAF II fund.

Ongoing cases

  • Bhushan Power update – JSW Steel has been declared winning bidder of Bhushan Power and Steel. It will now pay Rs.19,700 crores in cash to Bhushan Power’s lenders as also infuse Rs.350 crores for revival.
  • Amtek Auto case – NCLT has allowed Amtek Auto’s debt resolution process to start from scratch and be completed within 150 days. Lenders had approached NCLT after Liberty House failed to honour its payment commitments.
  • Fortis HealthcareFortis Healthcare wants to oust Singh Brothers and has already filed for de-parameterization of Singh brothers with Sebi.
  • Essar steel update – NCLAT has extended the deadline for NCLT Ahmedabad by one week to decide on the Essar Steel insolvency case.
  • Essar steel case – Supreme Court has dismissed a plea by operational creditors and has allowed NCLT Ahmedabad to decide on the firm’s insolvency case.
  • IL&FS update – NCLT has allowed 22 companies of IL&FS group to service their debt obligations. It has also allowed 133 IL&FS firms incorporated outside India to continue with the resolution process.

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People

  • Cornelis Vrieswijk, GoAir CEO has resigned just after joining the airlines around eight months back.
  • R .Venkataramanan, a long-time Tata Group associate, has resigned as the managing trustee of Tata Trusts. Noel Tata and Jehangir H.C.  have been appointed as a trustee on the Tata Trust. Venkataramanan’s annual compensation of Rs.2.66 crore has been under the scanner of the IT dept.
  • Vodafone Idea has appointed Suresh Vaswani as an independent director. Vaswani is currently an external global advisor to Bain Consulting, a board member of Servion Inc. and serves as a senior director on Everstone Capital.
  • Analjit Singh is set to be back at all major group companies. He will be joining as Non-Exec Chairman of Max India & Max Life. Max India owes a majority stake in Max Bupa Health and Max Healthcare.

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