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BW Businessworld

Shaken, Stirred But Still Stable

In this issue, we attempt an insight into the OYO story and the outlook for the company in 2020.

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"The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. He is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things.”   — Ronald Reagan

We chose such a man for our cover – Ritesh Agarwal who is striving to take his home-grown budget hotel chain to greater heights, braving the slowdown blues that have gripped the world. At the end of 2019, a year that brought mixed results to many corporate houses in the country, OYO Rooms had a million rooms in its kitty. The company plans to keep the growth momentum going in 2020 and has solid expansion plans in place for the year. Expansion necessitates enhancing efficiency, rejigging roles and restructuring business across various levels. 

As a matter of fact, for me, the interaction with Ritesh was like a process of reverse learning. I found his sense of humour refreshing in these times of turbulence. In the report, we attempt an insight into the OYO story and the outlook for the company in 2020. 

As we moved into the new year, the US drone strike and the subsequent death of an Iranian general in Baghdad, created circumstances that threatened to flare up into a full-scale war. Oil and gold prices skyrocketed. Since India imports 80 per cent of its crude oil requirements, prospects of another oil shock raised concerns. Analysts and experts say a prolonged high in oil prices could impact corporate earnings across several sectors. The crisis seems to have de-escalated for the moment, but we examine the implications of the geopolitical tensions in this issue of BW Businessworld. 

We then examine the predictions of Asian economies that will grow the fastest in 2020 and the nuances these rankings have for India. The agriculture sector has taken major strides in recent years, but two years away from the 2022 deadline for doubling farmers’ incomes, have policy prescriptions measured up to the desired goal? We offer insight.

The second cover for the current issue focuses on the defence sector in India. Policy measures have of late, not been able to attract the required investment. The roadmap for upgrading technology in defence has moreover, proved ineffective without the required thrust on research and development, which is the sole responsibility of the DRDO. The budget for R&D is inadequate and requires a rethink. Indigenisation and self-reliance in defence production will remain a distant dream if the government does not focus on R&D. Our report weaves in voices of leading stakeholders from the defence sector. 

Among other interesting reads in this issue is an interview with Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh, in which he speaks of his recent book, Chandra Shekhar: The Last Icon of Ideological Politics. And don’t forget to read about the supercar from the Italian stable of Lamborghini – Huracan EVO in the car review section.  

Do keep writing in with your views and feedback.

Happy reading!

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