News update – India business news headlines weekly roundup 18 to 23 March 2019

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India business news headlines weekly roundup 18 to 23 March 2019

Here’s a roundup of all the India business news that created the buzz in India this week:


  • The Government has exceeded its target of disinvestment of Rs.80,000 crores in the current fy by 5000 crores.
  • GVK Airport Holdings will increase its stake in Mumbai airport to 74% from existing 50.5%.
  • Karnataka transport department has reportedly suspended Ola’s license for six months for illegally running bike taxis.

India business news headlines weekly roundup 18 to 23 March 2019

  • Dell is planning to expand its retail presence to another 300 cities and town in 2019 taking the total of its retail operations to 1300 cities and towns.
  • TVS Electronics has sold its entire stake in its subsidiary Benani Foods for Rs.1.63 crores to Waycool Foods, a food supply chain start-up.
  • Hotstar has launched a subscription service, Hotstar VIP, at Rs.365 per year. The service will offer original and Star Network content including VIVO IPL, Cricket World Cup, etc.
  • MakeMyTrip has filed a case against EaseMyTrip for trademark violation. It has also made Google a party to it. EaseMyTrip is reportedly bidding on “makemytrip” ad-word at Google to appear on top of the search results.
  • IndiGo reportedly continues to engage in recruiting expat as well as those who might be “out of job” pilots (of Jet Airways) in India. SpiceJet has also reportedly been interviewing Jet Airways pilots.
  • Zomato has introduced tamper-proof packaging in 10 cities in India to add an extra layer of safety for food deliveries. The packaging will be 100% tamper proof and once the food is sealed, it can only be opened by cutting off the top-end strip.
  • Phonepe is planning to invest Rs.500 Crore to give it a marketing push. It has also reportedly spent Rs.100 Crores in sponsorship during the upcoming IPL.
  • Bombay High Court has restrained Vijaypat Singhania from releasing his autobiography till 25th March and has asked the civil court to take up final hearing of the suit and other applications filed by Raymond Ltd on top priority.
  • SpiceJet has become a member of IATA, the global airlines’ group, which has over 290 airlines as members. It is the first Indian budget carrier to join IATA.
  • HCL has entered into a shared services arrangement with Xerox to offer certain global administrative and support functions. The transaction revenue of Rs.9000 crores is expected over the next seven years.

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More in India business news headlines weekly roundup 18 to 23 March

  • Flipkart has deployed around 100 robots to help sort packages at one of its delivery hubs in Bengaluru. These robots pick up products from the conveyor belt, scan them and drop them down a chute based on the Pin codes.
  • L&T has agreed to buy V.G. Siddhartha’s 20.32% stake in Mindtree for Rs.3,269 crore. It will buy an additional 15% in Mindtree from the open market and also launch an open offer for another 31%. L&T has ruled out merging Mindtree with its IT arm for the time being.
  • RCom has terminated the deal to sell its telecom assets to Reliance Jio as it did not receive approval from Trai.
  • Naresh Goyal has told the pilots of Jet Airways that he would need “a further short time” to finalize a rescue deal and would make it a top priority to settle delayed salary payments.
  • RCom has paid Rs.462 Crores to Ericsson. Mukesh and Nita Ambani have reportedly helped him clear the dues. RCom owes a total Rs.571 crore to Ericsson, including a one-time settlement of ₹550 crores.
  • ED has informed the Delhi High Court that it has initiated investigations against Amazon and Flipkart for alleged violation of foreign exchange law.
  • Mastercard Inc. is concerned that India’s strict data localization rules could compromise its ability to detect frauds and money laundering in the domestic payments system.
  • Azim Premji’s two charities that hold his 56% stake in Wipro have been made partners in Wipro Ltd. This will allow the trusts to receive monetary gains from the shares. However, the two trusts have stayed away from voting on any resolutions pertaining to Wipro and also can not nominate any members on the company board.

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 Policies & Practices

  • GST Council has approved a transition plan for implementation of new tax structure for housing projects. This will give the developers the option to either choose the old structure with an input tax credit or shift to the new 5% and 1% rates.

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Some more India business news headlines weekly roundup 18 to 23 March

M&As and tie-ups

  • NSEIT has acquired Aujas Networks, a global cybersecurity firm, for an undisclosed sum. Aujas provides IT risk management and security consulting services and operates in India, the Middle East and North America.
  • .Asian Development Bank has entered into an agreement with Avaada Energy, a solar energy project developer, to invest USD 50 million.
  • DLF has formed a second JV with Hines, a global investment and development firm, to develop a commercial project in Udyog Vihar Gurugram, at an investment of Rs.1900 crores.
  • Ebix has started the due diligence process to acquire Yatra Online.
  • Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management has agreed to acquire four hotels and a land parcel from Hotel Leelaventure for Rs.3,950 crore. The properties of Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai, and Udaipur are part of the deal, however, Mumbai hotel has been excluded.

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Start-up world, funds and fundings

  • Facebook is in early-stage talks with several content startups in India for potential investments.
  • The valuation of Byju’s has surged to over $5.4 billion after the fresh funding of $25 million from its existing investors.
  • Bain Capital Ventures has invested an undisclosed amount in CoinDCX, a cryptocurrency trading platform. CoinDCX is an aggregator of cryptocurrency trading services.
  • KKR & Co Inc is reportedly raising its first Asia-focused real estate fund, targeting $1.5 billion as it looks to deepen its real estate portfolio in Asia.
  • Cred, a fintech funded by Kunal Shah, is looking to raise another $70-100 million. The funding round is likely to be led by Sequoia Capital and Ribbit Capital, its existing investors.
  • DivyaSree, a south Indian property developer and Kotak Investment Advisors have launched a new fund of $400 million to develop and acquire commercial office assets across India.
  • Hyundai and its subsidiary Kia have invested US$300 million in Ola to develop EV ecosystem.

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 There’s more in India business news headlines weekly roundup 18 to 23 March

 Ongoing cases

  • PNB Fraud case – Nirav Modi, arrested by the Scotland Yard, after being refused bail will be held at a prison in South-west London. He was remanded in custody until 29th March. The prison is considered one of the most overcrowded jails of England.
  • Jet Airways updates:
    • SBI chairman Rajnish Kumar has said that lenders would make all efforts to keep the airlines from slipping into bankruptcy. The bank has asked Naresh Goyal, his wife Anita, and two nominee directors, Nasim Zaidi and Gaurang Shetty, to step down from the board and executive roles.
    • Etihad has offered to sell its entire stake of 24% in Jet Airways to SBI @ Rs.150 per share.
    • As per DGCA, Jet Airways is currently operating only 41 aircraft and the number could reduce further.
    • Pilots have threatened to go on strike from 1st April.
    • Lessors of Jet Airways grounded aircraft are offering their planes to SpiceJet on lease. SpiceJet had to ground 12 of its 737 Max 8 aircraft due to government’s safety restrictions.
  • Fortis case:
    • Sebi has directed Fortis Healthcare and Fortis Hospitals to continue efforts to recover more than Rs.403 crores from Singh brothers and seven other entities.
    • Malvinder Singh has told the Supreme Court that he is confident of recovering Rs.6277 Crore loans and advances given to Gurinder Dhillion, the spiritual head of Radha Soami Satsang Beas.
  • Essar Steel update – NCLAT has given conditional approval to ArcelorMittal’s Rs.42,000 crore bid to take over Essar Steel.

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  • Fortis Healthcare has appointed Ashutosh Raghuvanshi as MD & CEO. Raghuvanshi was earlier with Narayana Health as Vice Chairman, MD & Group CEO.
  • Kaviya Kalanithi Maran has been appointed as additional director on the board of directors of Sun TV Network.

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