Here’s a look at this week’s top 10 Indian business news.
Sensex drop to two month lows
The Sensex shed 162 points to close the week at 18,309.37, a two month low. Inflation, weaker trends in global markets, falling rupee and the possibility of early elections were seen as the drivers behind the index dropping for the sixth consecutive day. Opto Circuits India Ltd, Pantaloon Retail (India) Ltd, Hexaware Technologies Ltd, GMR Infrastructure Ltd and Tata Motors Ltd were the top 5 weekly losers in Group A on BSE according to Rediff Money.
L&T awarded $250 million contract from Dolphin Energy
Engineering and construction giant Larsen & Toubro (L&T) was awarded a $250 million contract by UAE gas company Dolphin Energy to upgrade a gas plant in Qatar. "Larsen & Toubro’s scope will include the detailed engineering, procurement and construction of all necessary works to facilitate the installation of three new Rolls Royce Trent gas turbine compressors," said Dolphin Energy in a statement.
United Spirits Ltd stock rises on Diageo deal
United Spirits Ltd’s stock surged nearly 35% on Monday to close at Rs. 1,834.60 after the news of the Diageo deal from the week before. The Indian liquor giant’s stock rose to mid 1,900s during the week before closing at Rs. 1,791.50 on Friday.
Biocon partners with Bristol-Myers Squibb for oral insulin product
Biocon announced that it has partnered with NYSE listed pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) to develop Biocon’s IN-105, an oral insulin product.
"This agreement is one huge step closer to realizing the dream of bringing oral insulin to market" said Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, MD & Chairman, Biocon. Under the agreement, BMS will fund the Phase II trials of the drug and will have the option to assume full responsibility for development and commercialization. In addition to license fee, Biocon will potentially receive commercial milestone payments.
Cairn India and partners to invest $100 million to drill deeper in KG basin
Cairn India along with its venture partners at Rawa Oil Fields will invest $100 million to drill deeper in the KG basin. The exploration well will reportedly be drilled up to 4,000 meters and is expected to lead to a holding of 350 billion cubic feet of recoverable gas.
DLF quarterly profit down 63% to Rs. 139 crore
India’s largest realty player DLF Ltd reported a quarterly profit after tax of Rs. 139 crore, 62.6% down from Rs. 372 crore in the same period last year. Consolidated revenues were down 16% to Rs. 2,157 crore.
"The Company is now well positioned and positive to leverage its leadership with planned launches in excess of 9 msf during the second half of the fiscal year. We truly believe that the worst is behind us" said Ashok Tyagi, Group CFO, DFL. The company is planning to achieve a net debt reduction of Rs. 18,500 crore in FY 13.
Westpac Bank opens its first branch in India
Australia’s first bank Westpac opened its first branch in India in Mumbai. "India is a very important market given the strength and the connections that exist to Australia" said Rob Whitfield, Head of Institutional Banking, Westpac, as reported by the Herald Sun.
The Westpac Banking Corporation was formed in 1817 and has leading presence in Australia and New Zealand. According to the bank’s website, it is amongst the top 5 most valued companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) as per market capitalization.
Amway to set up its first manufacturing facility in India in Tamil Nadu
Direct selling company Amway will reportedly invest Rs. 550 crore to set up its first manufacturing facility in India in Tamil Nadu.
"The new manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu should be ready by early 2015," said William Pinckney, MD & CEO, Amway. In addition to this facility, the FMCG player plans to set up R&D centres in India over the next few years.
Petrol prices reduced by 95 paise per litre
Stable international oil prices have driven a drop in price of petrol by 95 paise per litre. Petrol prices will decrease by Rs. 1.2 in Mumbai, Rs. 1.2 in Chennai, Rs. 1.19 in Kolkata, Rs. 1.25 in Hyderabad, Rs. 1.25 in Bengaluru and Rs. 0.95 in Delhi.
"Presently, the international oil prices are relatively stable. However, there has been significant volatility in the INR-USD exchange rate and is currently very weak with uncertainty about its future direction" said an IOCL company statement.
Uttam Galva Group acquires Lloyds Steel, to invest additional Rs. 380 crore
Uttam Galva Group acquired a 58.35% majority stake in Lloyds Steel.
"We are infusing about Rs 380 crore into the company (Lloyds Steel). All the money will go into the company to improve its operations and cash requirements. Within one year, we will make Lloyds Steel profitable" said Ankit Miglani, Deputy MD, Uttam Galva Steels. Lloyds Steel has reportedly logged net losses of Rs. 290 crore in the last 3 years and has loans of Rs. 384 crore.