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BW Businessworld

Restructuring Investments

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Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani is said to be looking to restructure his personal investments by establishing a holding company named Reliance Industries Holding. Reportedly, this move is aimed at reducing cross-holdings and streamlining his portfolio. Ambani's personal investment portfolio includes a gas pipeline company Reliance Gas Transportation Infrastructure (RGTIL), Jamnagar-based power company Reliance Utilities and Power (RUPL) and Reliance Ports and Terminals (RPTL). As per media reports, RPTL's investment division will be hived off as a separate company and then it will be merged with the new holding company. A petition has reportedly been filed by RPTL towards this effect in the Gujarat High Court. However, there has been no official confirmation of the reported restructuring from RIL or Ambani.

In Union
Well, it's official now. Tech Mahindra will merge with Hyderabad-based Satyam Computer Services (Mahindra Satyam). It will acquire the remaining stake in Satyam in an all-stock transaction worth Rs 5,150 crore. Mahindra Group had bought scam-hit Satyam in April 2009. Now, the shareholders will receive two Tech Mahindra shares for every 17 shares owned in Satyam. The merged entity will rank as India's fifth largest software company by revenue.

MERGER: Tech Mahindra and Satyam (AP)

Head On
Automaker Nissan is gearing up to take on the competition from the top three Indian carmakers. It is working on a range of low-cost small car projects. The cars are to be introduced in India under the Datsun brand in 2014. Datsun cars will fight for space in the price bracket of Rs 2-4 lakh. The country's highest selling model, Maruti Suzuki Alto, Hyundai's Eon, and Tata Motors' Indica fall in the same price bracket.

Closure In Sight
Finally, the Unitech Group has agreed, in principle, to shed its stake in Uninor to its joint venture partner Telenor. Reportedly, Unitech lawyers on Monday made the proposal before the Company Law Board (CLB). Last week, the CLB had asked Unitech to make up its mind by March 19 on whether it wanted to buy Telenor's 67 per cent stake in Uninor or sell its own 33 per cent stake to its Norwegian partner. To protect their investments and rights Unitech and Telenor had moved the CLB against each other.

Mixed Returns
Losses of public sector units rose by 33.57 per cent to Rs 21,693 crore in FY11 over the previous fiscal. Profits of central public sector enterprises (CPSE), however, rose 4.92 per cent to Rs 1,13,770 crore during the last fiscal, compared to Rs 1,08,434 crore in FY10. The contribution of CPSEs to the government by way of duties, taxes, interest payments and dividends rose 11.58 per cent to over Rs 1.56 lakh crore in FY11.

Taxing Issue
Vodafone has warned that the government's retrospective amendment of income tax laws does not send good signals to the investors. Vodafone India's non-executive chairman Analjit Singh said, "As a practising businessman in India, this will not augur well for FDI and the country at large."

AAKASH:The tablet project receives more funding (Bloomberg)

Funnelling Funds
To begin the second phase of the Aakash tablet project, the government has allotted Rs 765 crore for it. Earmarked in the Union budget, the money has been allocated under the Ministry of Human Resource and Development's National Mission for Education through ICT. The mission had launched the low-cost tablet project last year.

Gold Glitter
The government has cut the the import tariff value of gold from $573 per 10 gm to $530 per 10 gm. The import tariff value for silver remained intact at $1,036 per kg. The change in the duty structure for gold and silver earlier this year had made the precious metals more expensive.

(This story was published in Businessworld Issue Dated 02-04-2012)