Friday, March 8, 2013

Business News

Mahindra & Mahindra has forayed into the motorcycle segment with two 110 cc models—Centuro and Pantero.

Aiming to expand its presence in the agribusiness space, the Tata Group is now looking at launching chillies. Metaheli –a biotech firm acquired by the group in 2010–has developed a hybrid red chilli and the teams at Tata Chemicals and its subsidiary Rallis are studying the possibility of launching the cayenne pepper. Rallis would supply farm management products like seeds and pesticides to farmers in helping them cultivate the plant while Tata Chemicals would buy the chillies, package and market them under the I-Shakti brand. 

Bhavarlal Hiralal Jain, who founded Jain Irrigation Systems about three decades ago and also introduced micro irrigation and several other new technologies in India’s agro sector, is now working on a five-year plan to set up a university that would be dedicated to three hot topics in today’s world: water management, food security and energy conservation. 

Sanjay Kapoor, CEO (India and South Asia) of Bharati Airtel, has resigned. Gopal Vittal, who rejoined India’s largest telecom operator in 2012 as group director, special projects, will take over as the head of its Indian operations with effect from March 1, 2013.

Telecom equipment maker Alcatel-Lucent has won an eight-year contract valued at more than $1 billion to manage Reliance Communications’ mobile and fixed networks in east and south India.

The FIPB has cleared Rs 10,000 crore investment proposal of Swedish furniture major IKEA to set up retail stores in the country with cafeterias.

Chennai-based Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Ltd (AHEL) has inked a Rs 400 crore deal with Belgian medical device manufacturer Ion Beam Applications SA (IBA), to set up Apollo Proton Therapy Center, a proton therapy center for cancer treatment. The therapy focuses primarily on the cancer-affected area and it does not harm healthy tissues. Apollo plans to set up the facility by 2015 and offer the services for Rs 30 lakh per treatement.

Battery maker Exide Industries, the largest stakeholder in ING Vysya Life Insurance, which currently owns a 50% stake, has decided to acquire the remaining stake for Rs 550 crore. It will buy 26% stake from Dutch partner ING Insurance International, which is exiting the insurance business in India with this deal. It will also acquire 16.32% stake from Hemendra Kothari group and 7.68% from Enam group. The deal will value ING Vysya at Rs1,100 crore.

SEBI has notified the SEBI (Investment Advisers) Regulations, 2013, wherein registration has been made compulsory for all financial advisors. Investment advice includes advice relating to investing in, purchasing, selling or otherwise dealing in securities or investment products, and advice on investment portfolio containing securities or investment products. Insurance agents, pension advisors, AMFI-registered mutual fund distributors, solicitors, chartered accountants, cost accountants, actuaries and fund managers do not need to register. Minimum qualifications to register are: postgraduate degree or diploma in finance or related fields; a minimum five years experience in financial products advice. In addition, all registered advisors have to obtain a certification from the National Institute of Securities Markets.

Brookings Institution, a non-profit public policy organisation based in Washington DC, has announced it would open Brookings India to serve as a platform for public policy research and analysis. Vikram Singh Mehta, former Chairman of the Shell group of companies, would be the chairman of Brookings India.

The largest Indian media conglomerate, The Times of India group, has launched a new film award—the times of india Film Awards (ToIFA), a global annual awards function which will directly take on International Indian Film Academy Awards (IIFA).

Royal Philips Electronics NV, 50 years after unveiling the compact cassette for music mix-tapes, has agreed to sell its audio and video units to Japan’s Funai Electric Co for $202 million. Philips now wants to concentrate more on profitable cancer scanners and energy savings light bulbs.

Research in Motion (RIM) has decided to change the name it has used since its inception in 1985 to BlackBerry.

The Union government has given a go-ahead for selling a 10 percent stake in Oil India Ltd, which is expected to raise more than Rs 2,500 crore.