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Top 10 Indian business news of the week

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We have reached the end of the week and here are the top 10 Indian business news that made headlines this week.

Top Business News

Ford India recalls more than 1.2 lakh Figo cars in India

In what has been one of biggest recalls in India, Ford India recalled more than 1.2 lakh units of Figo Classic Sedan and Figo Hatchback. The company said that there were ‘potential issues related to the Rear Twist Beam (RTB) and the Power Steering (PAS) hose’. If noise systems are left ignored, the problems could potentially cause damage to the rear suspension and interfere with breaking and overall performance of the cars. "All Ford Figo and Ford Classic vehicles manufactured between January 2008 and December 2010 will have the RTB inspected, and replaced if found defective", the company said, reported TOI.

IndiGo beats Jet Airways to capture the largest market share

For the first time ever, recently founded low-cost carrier IndiGo edged out market leader Jet Airways to claim the largest market share in India. As figures for July were revealed, it emerged that only 6 year old IndiGo operated 19,000 flights more than Jet Airways and its low-cost brand Jet Konnect.

IndiGo had a 27% market share in July, up 1% from June while Jet Airways, founded two decades back, had a 26.6% market share, according to DGCA figures.

Maruti Suzuki’s plant to restart on 21 August, 500 workers sacked

Maruti Suzuki’s Manesar saga continued as the company announced the reopening of its Manesar plant on 21 August. As the company prepared to get the plant back in operation, it also sacked 500 of its nearly 1,500 workforce in Manesar, reported TOI.

Estimates also reveal that the company has suffered unprecedented losses since violence broke out at the plant in which one of its executives was killed.

Suzlon Energy shares touch record lows as company posts disappointing results

For the quarter ending 30 June 2012, Suzlon Energy posted a net loss of Rs. 696.64 crore as compared to a net profit of Rs. 137.83 crore for the same period in 2011. Revenues dropped nearly 60% from Rs. 1,469.07 crore in Q1FY 2012 to Rs. 596.91 crore in Q1 FY2013.

This did not go down well at Dalal Street and the company’s stock touched lifetime lows after plunging more than 7% to Rs 16.35 on BSE earlier during the week. On Friday, the stock closed at Rs. 16.80.

McDonald’s to invest Rs. 500 crore in western and southern India the next 3 years

At the back of 35-40% increase in revenues in the last 2 to 3 years, the world’s largest burger/fast food chain is planning to invest Rs. 500 crore in western and southern Indian in the coming 3 years. "The potential is huge and the market under-penetrated" said Amit Jatia, Vice Chairman, HardCastle Restaurants, the Franchisee in the two regions.

In December 2011, Jatia revealed the company’s plans to build a new bakery in Bangalore and a state-of-the-art bun plant in Maharashtra, in an interview with Business Standard.

Sahara India jumps into the retail industry with Sahara Q Shop

In a bid to capture the growing retail industry in India, Sahara India announced the launch of over 800 Q Shops in 5 states including UP, Bihar, Jharkhand, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand. By early 2013 the company will expand its retail presence to all the corners of the country.

With an initial investment of Rs. 3,000 crore, Sahara India plans to introduce its own home brand and set up extensive supply networks to support its retail outlets and offer home deliveries.

Reebok India offers voluntary retirement to 200 employees

In one of our weekly Top Business News threads earlier this month, we had mentioned how parent company Adidas was looking to pump in Rs. 450 crore to revitalise its Reebok India operations. It appears that the revamp and restructuring has begun as the Adidas Group, via subsidiary Reebok India, offered VRS to 200 employees this week.

Staff can expect career support and varying severance packages in the VRS plan. "Of the current 900 Reebok stores, we estimate that one-third may not be in a position to transfer over to the new business model", said a company spokesman, reported TOI.

Unprecedented endorsements rolling in for Olympic athletes from Indian businesses

London 2012 has brought an unprecedented endorsement wave for Indian athletes from Indian Inc. Initial reports suggest that businesses in India are trying to capitalize on the fact that medal winning athletes have garnered a following like never before. It emerges that Mary Kom will nearly triple her endorsement fee from Rs. 15 lakh to Rs. 40 lakh after scooping the silver medal, said Neerav Tomar, MD & CEO of IOS Sports and Entertainment.

Videocon loses legal battle to Whirlpool

Earlier in the week, the Bombay High Court ruled in favour of Whirlpool, which had accused Videocon Industries for designing a washing machine that was ‘deceptively similar’ to their own. Videocon Industries will be barred from manufacturing or selling the line of washing machines which are similar to ones launched by Whirlpool nearly 2 years back.

Amway to set up dedicated R&D facility in India with an initial investment of Rs. 450 crore

Amway is set to open a dedicated R&D facility in India with an initial investment of Rs. 450 crore and the new facility will be commissioned by 2012. Amway, one of the world’s largest and most well known direct-selling company is looking to develop ‘new and innovative products, specifically for India’, mentioned William Pinckney, MD & CEO, Amway India Enterprises.

He also expects India’s direct-selling market to grow by 25% to a 7,000 crore segment.

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