After a recent spike in the market and hopes of a better economic outlook in previous weeks, this week remains a mixed bag of news for India Inc. Here’s a recap as we take a look at the top 10 Indian business news of the week gone by.
- 1 Ratan Tata stands up for PM Manmohan Singh
- 2 Reliance Industries in the news: RIL profits drop 21% in Q1 2012, sells 80% stakes in Kurdistan oil blocks to Chevron
- 3 Maruti Suzuki’s General Manager (HR) dies after workers’ rampage at company’s Manesar plant
- 4 Mercedes takes on Audi and BMW head on: To launch B-Class Sports Tourer
- 5 1,800 crore wiped off Adani Enterprise Ltd stocks after rumour fuelled by blogger
- 6 Tihar Jail products on shelves of retail shops in India
- 7 Citibank gives order worth $200 million to HCL Tech’s BPO
- 8 Mahindra & Mahindra beats Tata Motors to become India’s 3rd largest car maker
- 9 Flipkart.com in the news: Increases minimum order value for delivery amidst reports of increased funding needs
- 10 Kingfisher Airlines in the news: Stock price drops below face value, DGCA note missing, Mallya has potential FDI investors
Ratan Tata stands up for PM Manmohan Singh
After being labeled as an underachiever by Time magazine and in some ways, criticized by top honchos from India Inc including Azim Premji and Narayana Murthy, PM Manmohan Singh has found an unlikely supported in Ratan Tata. During the week, India’s Top CEO came out in defense of the man he labeled as the ‘architect of 1991 reforms’ and mentioned that it was wrong for everyone to single out the PM for the country’s economic woes. However, he did have a few words of advice for the PM and said "…. our PM must break convention, restore government credibility, place the country on a growth path once again by implementing promised reforms, removing roadblocks to growth and controlling crony capitalism" as reported by TOI.
Reliance Industries in the news: RIL profits drop 21% in Q1 2012, sells 80% stakes in Kurdistan oil blocks to Chevron
RIL posted a third consecutive drop in profits. Q1 2012 profits were down 21% at Rs. 4,473 crore but there were no surprises as analysts were expecting a drop of more than 18%. The drop was fuelled by the conglomerate’s 3 core business segments of petrochemicals, oil and gas, and refining. It also announced the sale of its 80% stake in two Kurdistan oil blocks to Chevron, one of the largest companies in the world in terms of revenues.
Maruti Suzuki’s General Manager (HR) dies after workers’ rampage at company’s Manesar plant
In a rampage that shocked India Inc, workers at Maruti Suzuki’s Manesar plant mercilessly hunted down senior executives. Awanish Kumar Dev, General Manager HR, succumbed to his injuries after sustaining multiple fractures and then being burnt to death after his office was set of fire by the irate mob of workers. Many other top level executive including VPs and plant heads were targeted, injured and hospitalized. It is believed that unrest began after a minor scuffle between a supervisor and a worker. The Manesar plant has remained shut since the incident on Wednesday.
Mercedes takes on Audi and BMW head on: To launch B-Class Sports Tourer
By Q3 2012 Mercedes plans to launch its B-Class Sports Tourer in India to take on Audi’s Q3 and BMW’s X1. B-Class is the lower end of the premium car segment. It seems that the German car maker has taken note of the popularity of its rivals’ entry level models. C-Class, Mercedes’ cheapest car in India is currently priced just below Rs. 29 lakh. It is about 10-15% more expensive than Audi’s Q3 which is priced between 26-27 lakh. Currently, BMW and Mercedes hold 1st and 2nd spot in the luxury car market followed by Audi.
1,800 crore wiped off Adani Enterprise Ltd stocks after rumour fuelled by blogger
Stock prices of many companies under the Adani Group took a tumble after a blogger posted incorrect rumours about Gautam Adani’s arrest in connection with Jayanti Gohil, NCP leader’s arrest. The blog, run by a Vadodara based blogger mentioned "Believe it or not: Our Ahmedabad Bookie says: Mr. GAUTAM ADANI is been arrested? What will happen to ADANI STOCKS? Something related to Kidnapping of Congress Leader…We are Hearing (Rumours or Facts??) Let’s see…" The stock dipped 8.4% and closed at Rs. 195 on Tuesday.
Tihar Jail products on shelves of retail shops in India
Tihar Jail, the largest prison complex in India is partnering with India’s largest retailer RIL, Vishal Retail and Spencer’s Retail. The Jail’s products have already found their way to Reliance stores in Gurgaon but this move will possibly see growth. Tihar Jail’s products currently include bakery, spices, handloom, textile, apparel, detergent, soap and other household goods. Delhi Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar, former DG Tihar Jail, expects profits to soar beyond Rs. 30 core.
Citibank gives order worth $200 million to HCL Tech’s BPO
If market rumours and a recent TOI report are to be believed, HCL Tech’s BPO has won a $200 million outsourcing order from Citibank. This will possibly create more than 800 jobs within the company and comes at the back of a recent $250 million outsourcing deal with UBS.
Mahindra & Mahindra beats Tata Motors to become India’s 3rd largest car maker
Bolero, Scorpio, Xylo and the latest XUV500 have powered M&M’s into becoming India’s 3rd largest car maker. During this week, numbers revealed that M&M’s sales for April-June 2012 spiked 28% to 61,504 units as compared to a 7% slump in Tata Motors’ sales which tallied at 60,405 in the same period. Currently, Maruti Suzuki remains India’s largest car maker followed by Hyundai’s India arm at 2nd place, and now M&M at 3rd.
Flipkart.com in the news: Increases minimum order value for delivery amidst reports of increased funding needs
Flipkart.com announced a 50% increase in its minimum order value for free home delivery from Rs. 200 to Rs. 300. In the last 12 months, Flipkart.com has aggressively added more categories to its portfolio in moves to counter growing competition from bigger players including Amazon’s India arm Junglee.com, Indiatimes Shopping and many more. This was not the only reason Flipkart was in the news this week. Reports also emerged that the online shopping portal would need in excess of $150 million in extra funding over the coming 12 months.
Kingfisher Airlines in the news: Stock price drops below face value, DGCA note missing, Mallya has potential FDI investors
Despite recent clarification by the Aviation ministry that they will not close down KFA until they have at least 5 aircrafts running, the debt ridden and crisis plagued airliner’s stock price closed below face value on Tuesday. During trading, it touched all time lows of Rs. 9.8, later closing at Rs. 9.9. Later during the week, ex DGCA Director General Bharat Bhushan claimed that a controversial note questioning KFA’s safety has gone missing from the premises. Owner Vijay Mallya on Saturday announced that he had talked to potential foreign investors who wanted to put money into the carrier.