Business & Finance - Current Affairs for February, 2016

Business & Finance Current Affairs for February, 2016

Month wise coverage of Business & Finance Current Affairs helps you improve your general knowledge and prepare for all competitive exams like IBPS, Bank PO, SBI PO, RRB, RBI, LIC, Specialist Officer, Clerk, SSC, UPSC, Railway etc. This section is updated daily with the most important events.

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▼ Ultratech Limited to acquire Jaypee Group’s cement capacity assets   [02-29-16]

UltraTech Limited has taken the decision to acquire Jaypee Group’s 22.4 MT of cement capacity assets for INR 16500 crore. This is the largest deal ever in the cement sector of India. Kumar Mangalam Birla’s flagship cement firm has entered into binding agreement with Jaiprakash Associates Ltd for acquisition of identified cement plants with total cement capacity of 22.4 mtpa and situated in MP, UP, HP, Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Deal will also include a 4 metope plant under implementation at INR 470 crore. Jaypee Group is India’s third largest cement group.

▼ Zee Media Corporation to acquire 80 percent stake in India Today’s e-commerce and TV shopping units   [02-29-16]

Zee Media Corporation will acquire 80% stake in India Today’s group loss making e-commerce and TV shopping entities Today Merchandise and Today Retail Network Pvt Ltd for INR 166 crore in payments staggered over the next 4 years.Investment will be made in tranches and with this acquisition, the company will lower launch timing of its TV Shopping channel.

▼ Ajay Shankar led DIPP Panel suggests steps to do away with multiple permissions   [02-29-16]

DIPP panel led by former secretary Ajay Shankar has suggested steps to cut down multiple permissions. A government constituted expert committee has suggested introduction of credible 3rd party certification in areas such as regulation and adoption of international best practices for emission norms and other steps to cut down on multiple permissions by investors. There has also been a recommendation that there is requirement for standing institutional mechanisms within GoI for third party regulatory assessment. For startups, the panel has suggested steps like mixed land use redevelopment/greenfield development and exemption from seeking building permissions. Startups should also be given special exemptions in the compliance of labour laws for their growth, the panel suggested. 11 member committee chaired by Shankar also indicated that an investor friendly regulatory framework should be put in place instead of multiple permissions. This is a step forward to make India an attractive destination for investments. Other members of the committee include Siddhartha Sibal (Accenture) CII Secretary General Chandrajeet Banerjee and Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Manoj Kumar Singh and Joint Secretary in Ministry of Labour and Employment, Manoj Kumar Singh.

▼ IPCL enters into agreement with French company ENGIE to acquire shares of MEPL   [02-26-16]

India Power Corporation Limited has entered into an agreement with ENGIE of France to acquire shares of MEPL or Meenakshi Energy Private Limited. MEPL is a coal fired thermal power company located in AP’s Nellore district. IPCL indicated ENGIE used to hold 90% stake in the company which will be purchased in entirety by IPCL.

▼ UB Group Chairman Vijay Mallya has stepped down as non executive chairman of USL   [02-26-16]

UB Group chairman Vijay Mallya has stepped down as non executive chairman of United Spirits Limited controlled by Diageo Plc after a deal in which the firm agreed to drop all charges of alleged irregularities under his watch, and pay him $75 million over five years in return for getting him to go. Now, Mahendra Kumar Sharma will be made the chairman of United Spirits. Sharma is currently independent non executive director and chairman of the audit committee of United Spirits.

▼ Ola enters into agreement with UP government to create entrepreneurship activities across the state   [02-25-16]

Taxi aggregator Ola has entered into agreement with the UP government to create 50,000 entrepreneurship opportunities across the state. Ola will work with state government to ensure skill development of youth in UP as part of the pact. It will also work with the UP state government to launch personalised mobility solutions like Ola Auto, Ola Shuttle and Ola Share.  Ola has also added ride sharing facilities recently in cities like Pune.

▼ BlackBerry acquires cybersecurity consultancy Encription   [02-25-16]

BlackBerry has acquired UK based cyber security consultancy Encription, moving the company into the service industry to morph into software focused entity amid current turnaround. Smartphone pioneer sees massive potential in the area which is currently worth USD 16.5 billion per annum on an international scale. Acquisition will bring team of 40 cybersecurity professionals into BlackBerry’s folded also provide the company an opportunity to cross sell its own security products. Last year in September, BlackBerry acquired Good Technology for USD 425 million after acquisition of secure networked crisis communications provider AtHoc.

▼ Facebook announces Telecom Infra Project   [02-25-16]

This project will look at creation of new and alternative technologies to build and deploy telecom infrastructure. Partners include HCL, Nokia and Intel. TIP will focus on open designs for three areas of telecommunications hardware and software: access points, the backhaul network to connect them, and network core and management systems. Facebook said TIP members will contribute designs in three areas- access, back haul, and core and management. TIP will apply the design principles of the Open Compute Project, which is a Facebook project to share data centre designs.

▼ Infosys extends Vishal Sikka’s term by another 2 years   [02-25-16]

India’s second largest software export firm Infosys has extended the tenure of CEO Vishal Sikka by another 2 years till 2021 when the India’s 160 billion IT industry bellwether will enjoy its strongest period of growth. Infosys has beaten market expectations in the last three quarters and beaten larger rivals like TCS. Infosys will also revise his annual compensation on account of the new agreement.

▼ Internet giant Google enters into partnership with TechHub   [02-25-16]

Google has entered into a global partnership with TechHub for benefiting startups from India for the first time. Partnership with Google for Entrepreneurs will create opportunities for TechHub’s 700 plus tech startups across the world including India. This strong partnership will empower entrepreneurs to go international from day one. TechHub members in Bengaluru and other locations such as Madrid, Warsaw and London will have access to programmes and assistance from Google. Tech hub members are from 60 nations and each member can access Google in 6 international cities.

▼ Fast acting Rabishield drug developed by Pune’s SII in collaboration with University of Massachusetts medical school   [02-25-16]

The first fast acting anti rabies drug of the world which deactivates the deadly virus and provides protection in the case of severe dog bites, has been developed by Pune’s Serum Institute of India and US based Mass Biologics of the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Drug us called RMAb or rabies human monoclonal antibody or Rabishield. It precludes chances of transmitting blood none infections there in rabies immunoglobulin, a current treatment option for severe dog bites. Drug has been manufactured through the use of recombinant DNA technology and is 25% cheaper than existing rabies immunoglobulins which means it will meet needs of developed countries. In India around 20,000 deaths are caused by rabies each year. WHO estimates that 55,000 deaths are caused by rabies in Africa and Asia each year. The new drug is suitable for severe dog bite cases because it is an human IgG1 monoclonal antibody that specifically binds to a conformational epitope of G glycoprotein of rabies virus and instantly deactivates it.

▼ India’s first IT park established by a labour cooperative society opens in Nellikode   [02-24-16]

The first IT park to be set up by a labour cooperative society Uralungal Labour Cooperative Society in Nellikode was inaugurated by President Pranab Mukherjee. This IT park has been constructed at the estimated cost of INR 270 crore and it will provide direct employment to 4500 persons during the first phase and indirect employment to about 20,000 persons. 6 IT companies have received approval of SEZ authority to commence operations in the park.

▼ India’s steel output falls by 1.5% in January 2016: Steel Ministry   [02-24-16]

India’s steel output fell by 1.5% in January marking the first decline since September 2015 as steel production in the world’s third largest producer fell to 7.4 million tonnes. This marks the first fall since September 2015 when crude steel production in the nation declined to 7.3MT as against September 2014. Latest data released by the Joint Planning Committee under the Ministry of Steel, overall crude production fell on account of decrease of 1.7% in case of other producers, while output fell by 1.4% with respect to Integrated Steel Plant producers. Compared to December 2015, the output went up by 1.5%, led by increase of 3.5% in case of ISP producers. According to World Steel Association (WSA), India's crude steel production was 7.4 MT, a decrease of 1.2 percent compared to January 2015. Internationally, total production in the 66 countries, reporting to the WSA, stood at 128 MT last month, a 7.1 percent decrease compared to January 2015, according to the association.

▼ Salesforce acquires Prediction IO   [02-23-16]

Salesforce has acquired a start up with general purpose open source machine learning software called Prediction IO. CEO and co-founder Simon Chan noted that the startup’s team — which includes other co-founders Donald Szeto, Kenneth Chan and Thomas Stone — will be joining Salesforce after the closing of the transaction. Salesforce, which has acquired RelateIQ and Tempo AI, among other companies in recent times to expand in machine learning. Other startups include H2O and Skytree. PredictionIO started in 2013 and was based in Palo Alto, California. The startup raised a $2.5 million round in 2014.

▼ Software services provider HCL partners Symantec for cloud security solutions   [02-23-16]

Software services provider HCL and US software security firm Symantec Corp has expanded the partnership to assist enterprises in areas such as cybersecurity, cloud security and forensic solutions. Aim is to help enterprises meet information and risk management needs and build a cyber-resilient system. According to Cyberthreat Defence Report 2015, close to 70% of the respondents have alleged data breach resulting in erosion of brand reputation and loss of shareholder value.

▼ RCom gets CCI approval for acquiring SSTL   [02-23-16]

Reliance Communications has indicated that regulatory authority CCI has given the approval for its acquisition of Russian company Sistema’s Indian telecom unit, System Shyam Teleservices Ltd operating under the ATS brand. The leading telecom operator announced acquisition of the all stock deal for acquiring SSTL that will create operator with 118 million subscribers in November. According to the deal, Sistema Shyam Teleservices Ltd will hold ten percent stake in Reliance Communications and pay off debts before the deal closes. System currently holds 56.68% stake in SSTL while the Russian government owns 17.14% and Shyam Group as a 23.98% stake while the rest is owned by small investors. Sistema offers mobile telephony services as part of the MTS brand in 9 telecom circles.

▼ Software and computing giant IBM partners VMWare   [02-23-16]

Computing giant IBM has grown its partnership with VMWare to carve out a larger role in the field of cloud computing. VMWare virtualisation products will now be easily available on IBM cloud data centres so companies can make the connection between data centres and cloud easier. Virtualisation allows one server to run many OS and forms the heart of the cloud technology. IBM also plans to make it easy for developers using its tools to create applications in Swift, the programming language developed by Apple. IBM is also set to purchase medical data company Truven Heath for USD 2.6 billion in the first week of February 2016.

▼ Wipro ties up with Verveba for advanced RAN solutions for mobile   [02-23-16]

Software major Wipro has joined hands with telecom network engineering company Verveba for providing advanced mobile RAN/radio network optimization solutions. Companies will offer 4G and Single RAN technologies through the partnership. The two network services organisations will also partner each other to combine skills and talents to provide cutting edge telecom experience solution to clients. Verveba is a world class multiple vendor skilled in building solutions, Wi-FI and LTE.

▼ Aditya Birla Nuvo forms JV to open payment bank with Idea Cellular   [02-22-16]

Aditya Birla Nuvo, one of 11 entities receiving in principle approvals for setting up a payments bank from RBI has incorporated a new subsidiary for the same purpose. The 51:49 JV between Aditya Birla Nuvo and Idea Cellular is called Aditya Birla Idea Payments Bank Ltd. Aditya Birla Nuvo owns 23.26% in Idea Cellular which is its telecom subsidiary.

What is a payments bank?

As per RBI norms, payment bank can accept deposits equalling INR 1 lakh from individual customers as well as issue ATM and debit cards and offer payment and remittance services besides acting as distributor of simple financial products. Payment banks cannot carry out lending activities. Mobile telephone companies are specifically mentioned as existing business entities which can apply to set up payments banks.

▼ SSAV Swedish Steel to partner with Orient Impel   [02-22-16]

Stockholm based SSAB Swedish Steel has taken the decision to partner with vendor Orient Impex in India offering technology as well as marketing support. Agreement will be signed on the last day of February 2016. Chennai based Orient Impex has been purchasing SSAB Swedish steel core products Hardox ware resistant steel plates and conversion of the same into products. The firm has been manufacturing products for areas such as wear lines, feeders and cement.

▼ Commerce Ministry’s fresh norms for power generation in SEZ and IT/ITeS Zones   [02-22-16]

Commerce Ministry has stipulated fresh norms for power generation in SEZs and the government has come out with new guidelines for establishing power plants in SEZs. The norms also state there will be no fiscal benefits towards maintenance. According to modified norms, power plants to be set up in IT/ITeS zones will require uninterrupted power supply as stability in frequency will be entitled for fiscal incentives for establishment and maintenance of generating units. Norms also state that power plant including non-conventional energy power plant to be established by developer/co-developer in SEZ as part of infrastructure facility will be in the non-processing area of SEZ alone and will be entitled to fiscal benefits for initial establishment and no fiscal benefit would be there for operation and maintenance. The norms also said that setting up of captive power plants such as non-conventional energy could be allowed within the processing area as a unit subject to net foreign exchange earning obligations. Such power plants will be entitled to fiscal incentives. Guidelines also said SEZ connected to state/national grid will be allowed for creating back up power facility.

▼ Bharat Forge, TATA Motors and General Dynamics to collaborate for FICV   [02-19-16]

FICV was in news as TATA Motors,Bharat Forge and US based General Dynamics has tied up for defence bid under FICV or Future Infantry Combat Vehicle Programme. The FICV Programme involves creation of compact combat vehicles for the Indian Army that will replace Russian-designed BMP (Sarath BMP-II) series armed vehicles. This is India’s largest indigenous defence programme estimated to be at the cost of USD 10 billion.

▼ Cipla acquires two US based generic drug companies InvaGen and Exelan.   [02-19-16]

Cipla Limited has acquired two US generic drug firms InvaGen Pharmaceuticals Inc and Exelan Pharmaceuticals Inc to enhance revenue and introduce fresh products for coping with diseases such as cancer and diabetes in what is the largest pharma market in the world. Cipla closed the transaction through completely owned subsidiary Cipla EU Ltd, as per the statement. This marks the second biggest acquisition in Cipla’s 8 decade history.

▼ Al Robot Wins QPrize-Make in India contest   [02-19-16]

Qualcomm Inc through venture investment company Qualcomm Ventures and DIPP has announced the winner of the QPrize-Make in India contest to be Bengaluru based Ark Robot.
This company will receive INR 2 crore in investment from Qualcomm. It uses Machine Vision Systems, AI and Swarm intelligence to provide logistics solutions through robotics. The panel comprised Amitabh Kant (secretary, DIPP) Kris Gopalakrishnan, (co-founder, Infosys), Ravi Gururaj, (founder & CEO - & chairman, NASSCOM Product Council), Sunil Lalvani, (president, Qualcomm India) and Karthee Madasamy, (vice-president, Qualcomm Ventures India).

▼ NTPC ties up with DLR Cologne and ISE for boosting solar energy   [02-18-16]

National Thermal Power Corporation’s NETRA (its R&D Wing) will collaborate with German institutions DLR Cologne and ISE, Fraunhofer, Freiburg on Solar Energy Research. Contract agreements have been signed with DLR Cologne for Research in Solar Thermal and ISE Fraunhofer for Research in Solar PV," said the source. As part of this programme, NETRA will also set up excellent evaluation facilities for Solar PV, CPV and CSP under knowledge sharing programmes with the government of Germany. Programme is funded by the German government under the Indo German Research Cooperation. NTPC has already commissioned several solar and hydro power projects. It aims to reduce dependence on fossil fuels to 56% by 2032 from 85#. Power producer envisages renewable energy will contribute 28% to capacity of 1,28,000 MW by 2030s.

▼ Idea Cellular announces partnership with Swedish firm Ericsson   [02-18-16]

Idea Cellular has announced the inking of an agreement with Swedish communication technology MNC Ericsson to deploy the 4G network across certain Indian telecom circles serving over 40 million subscribers. The existing mobile radio access and core network infrastructure across 9 circles for 2G and 5 circles for 3G is on the nail, according to CEO, India Cellular H. Kapania.

▼ Aston Martin to set up JV with LeEco   [02-18-16]

Aston Martin has set up a joint venture with Chinese tech company LeEco to develop the Briths luxury car company’s first electric vehicle which will come to the markets in 2018. The partners plan to develop the new electric bar based on the Rapide S model. Alongside this, JV plans are on to collaborate with startup electric car venture led by Jia Yueting, Faraday Future.

▼ mRupee to tie up with IRCTC for providing additional payment gateway   [02-17-16]

mRupee, a TATA Teleservices subsidiary on 15th February 2016 has announced a tie up with IRCTC or Indian Railway Catering Tourism Corporation for an additional payment channel. Indian Railways has more than 23 million passengers within a day and the users will be allowed one tap payments for rail ticket bookings through mRupee wallet. IRCTC is a subsidiary of Indian Railways handling catering, tourism as well as online ticketing operations of the railways.

▼ Country’s 4th largest software services firm HCL Technologies set to acquire Volvo   [02-17-16]

The 4th largest software services company in India, HCL Technologies indicated it would acquire the external IT business of Volvo group and has signed a 5 year outsourcing deal with the commercial vehicles maker. For this acquisition, companies signed a letter of intent in October adding 40 new customers in Nordic and France regions and extremely skilled 2500 employees from 11 nations to the portfolio of HCL. Noida based firm has agreed to acquire the external IT business of Swedish Volvo group for INR 895 crore in a complete cash deal. This is one of the largest deals signed by any Indian IT company and the first in the industry to employ the principles of Vested Sourcing as the basis for IT outsourcing engagement of a certain size and magnitude.

▼ Amazon acquires online payment service provider Emvantange   [02-17-16]

International e-commerce major Amazon is set to acquire online payment service provider Emvantage Payments Private Ltd for an undisclosed amount. Acquisition will enable Amazon to accelerate the development of healthy payment solutions for customers as well as e-commerce business in India. As part of this acquisition, Emvantage’s employees will join the Amazon payments team for development of innovative payment products and solutions for the Indian market.

▼ Uber signs agreement with Government of Maharashtra   [02-17-16]

Taxi hailing application Uber has signed an agreement with the Maharashtra government to create around 75,000 jobs across the Western state. Through the MoU, Uber will focus on training those who are from marginalised sections of society as well as women. This ensures the promotion of fair and equal opportunity for different sectors of the society to earn money as independent entrepreneurs on the platform. MoU was formalised by Uber through Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Department, Government of Maharashtra. Uber was launched in 2009 and is present in over 360 cities in more than 65 nations across the world.

▼ First ever policy for capital goods sector launched by Union Ministry for Heavy Industries   [02-17-16]

Government of India has approved the first ever policy for capital goods sector, according to Union Minister for Heavy Industries Anand Geete. Policy holds that export will be increased to 40% of the production from the current 27% with increase in share of domestic production in India’s demand to 80% making India the net exporter of capital goods. National Capital Goods Policy aims to increase production of capital goods from Rs 2,30,000 crore in 2014-15 to Rs 7,50,000 crore in 2025 and raising direct and indirect employment from the current 8.4 million to 30 million.

▼ SnapBizz raises funds from Ratan Tata   [02-17-16]

SnapBizz Cloudtech Pvt Limited devises technology for grocery stores. It raised a non disclosed amount of funding from Chairman Emeritus from TATA Sons Ltd, Ratan Tata. Earlier,SnapBizz raised funds in investment round funded by VC firms Jungle Ventures, Konly Ventures, Blume Ventures and Taurus Value Creation. Tata has invested in 20 startups so far.

▼ DoT permits sharing of telecom infrastructure which is active   [02-16-16]

Department of Telecom has permitted sharing of active infrastructure such as transmission systems, feeder cable and antenna allowing TSP to attain lower costs and lead to faster rollout of networks. Earlier, only passive infrastructure such as towers were permitted to be shared. Active infrastructure will be restricted to antenna, feeder cable, radio access network, Node B and transmission system only.

▼ Mahindra & Mahindra approved the proposal for transferring agri business to subsidiary   [02-15-16]

BoD of directors of Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd have approved the proposal for transferring the company’s agri business to 100% subsidiary Mahindra Shubhlab Services to create one entity for focused growth. Agri business is aligned to long term aim for farm tech prosperity. Agri business has reached a critical mass and new entity will provide benefit for completely leveraging potential offered by businesses.

▼ Pact to form JV between Saab Group and Kalyani Strategic Systems on the anvil   [02-15-16]

Saab Group, a Swedish aerospace as well as defence firm is all set to form a pact with Kalyani Strategic Systems Limited to manufacturing air defence systems jointly. JV between Saab and the defence arm of Kalyani Group, KSSL will ensure the delivery and manufacturing of air defence systems to Indian customers. Saab and KSSL are already in the process of planning for technology transfer for different packages within the programme. KSSL is a 100 percent unit of Bharat Forge Limited which is part of the Kalyani Group engaged in forgings for automative as well as non automotive sectors as well as speciality steels and infrastructure.

▼ Anil Agrawal led Twinstar Display Technologies to set up India’s first LCD manufacturing facility   [02-15-16]

NRI billionaire, Anil Agrawal announced his firm Twinstar Display Technologies will establish the first LCD manufacturing facility in India. Pact is to be signed at Made in India week in Mumbai between this company and the government. Project is being set up in Maharashtra.

▼ Facebook India MD Kirthiga Reddy steps down from post   [02-15-16]

Facebook India’s Managing Director Kirthiga Reddy has resigned from her post. She will exit in 6 to 12 months and return to the US. She was the first employee for Facebook in India and has been with the company for six years.

▼ Facebook to shut down Free Basics Programme in India   [02-12-16]

Facebook has taken the decision to close down its controversial Free Basics programme in the country, following TRAI’s support for net neutrality by barring operators from charging different rates for Internet access based on content.The service was available in India with Reliance Communications. In December, RCom put the service on hold following a TRAI directive to that effect.

▼ Amazon purchases 26% stake in leading publishing house from TATA company Trent   [02-12-16]

American e-commerce player Amazon has acquired a 26% stake in Westland publishing house owned by TATA company Trend for INR 9.5 crore. This has upped its presence in the third largest economy of Asia, India, and the deal also allows the Jeff Bezos company to purchase the remaining 74% stake in future. Trent acquired Landmark Book Stores in 2005 thereby inheriting Westland. Prior to this, two other publishing businesses have seen the TATA Group divest in them. TATA Infomedia was exited in the past and is known as the publisher of the TATA Yellow pages directory. TATA McGraw Hill Publishing is a promoter of professional as well as educational books. Westland is a culmination of EastWest Books and Westland Books which focuses on Indian authors and is one of the top 5 publishing houses in India. India us currently 7th in overall publishing after US and UK publishing industry. A FICCI report has stated that book publishing in India will be worth INR 10,000 crore growing at the rate of 30% on an average.

▼ Wipro to purchase HealthPlan Services   [02-12-16]

Wipro is buying the US based insurance technology platform for USD 460 million or INR 3000 crore. This marks its 4th acquisition in the last half a year. This is its biggest acquisition since USD 600 million buyout of US data centre provider Infocrossing in the year 2007. HealthPlan Services was founded in the 1970s and headquartered in Florida. It is owned by Water Street Healthcare Partners, a PE firm associated with the healthcare industry. Water Street all be fully purchased by Wipro. HealthPlan services provide technology platforms and business process as a service solutions to healthcare insurance firms. It is the largest US independent provider of sales, retention, reform and technology solutions to insurance companies. This is the 4th acquisition of Wipro in less than 6 months as it had made the following purchases during this period of time:
DesignIt: Denmark based firm
Cellent - German IT consulting firms
Viteous Group: New Jersey based BPaaS provider

▼ NCRB and Indian Institute of Chemical Biology to promote entrepreneurship   [02-12-16]

National Research Development Corporation has entered into an MoU with Indian Institute of Chemical Biology- CSIR for promoting entrepreneurship. The MoU has been signed in the presence of Union Ministers for Science and Technology along with the Minister of State for West Bengal. CSIR IICB is associated with research on diseases and biological problems of international interest. The institute also promoted the country’s start up movement through a research unit called TRUE or Translational Research Unit of Excellence. NRDC and CSIR-IICB aim to contribute to the “Startup India” and “Make in India” Missions, promoting Entrepreneurships, Incubation, IPRs, Technology Transfer as NRDC has rich experience in these areas over 60 years and executed about 5000 technology Licence Agreements with industries to this point.

▼ Free Basics platform to turn into paid version: RCom   [02-11-16]

Facebook’s Free Basics platform will not remain free any more. Reliance Communications, Facebook India’s partner for the interface has taken the decision to make it into a paid platform. Decision goes against FB’s objective of providing free of cost platform for connecting persons online. To be completely compliant with the new regulations made by TRAI, RCom has begun reconfiguration of Free Basics from a free regime to a chargeable one.

▼ Indian Institute of Technology-Madras partners Nokia to create technology solutions for rural India   [02-11-16]

IIT-M has collaborated with Nokia Networks for creating technology solutions to improve broadband connectivity in rural India under a three year partnership between the Finnish company and Centre of Excellence for Wireless Technology/CEWIT. Project will evaluate options for unlicensed spectrum to deliver last mile broadband connectivity to isolated rural communities in India. This will also complement GoI’s NOFN/National Optical Fibre Network Initiative.

▼ Mukesh Bansal, Ankit Nagori quit Flipkart   [02-11-16]

Mukesh Bansal, the founder of Myntra, has resigned as head of Flipkart’s commerce and advertising platform and will progress to an advisory role. Binny Bansal has taken over as CEO and Sachin Bansal will be executive chairman at Flipkart. Chief Business Officer Ankit Nagori has also quit Flipkart to commence with his own venture.

▼ Chairman emeritus TATA Sons, Ratan Tata invests in oncology firm   [02-10-16]

Ratan Tata, the chairman emeritus of TATA Sons, has made the investment of a non disclosed amount in Delhi’s biopharma firm Invictus Oncology Pvt Ltd which is involved in uncovering cancer therapies. Invictus Oncology is the fifth firm Tata has invested in after Tracxn, DogSpot, FirstCry and CashKaro. This firm uses supramolecular technology platform for designing cancer treatment drugs. This company has also developed a deep pipeline of molecules tapping a USD 20 billion market opportunity in oncology space.

▼ World’s biggest offshore wind farm set up in UK   [02-9-16]

UK wind energy industry has received a boost with the announcement of the largest offshore wind farm across the globe to be constructed off the NE coast. Danish firm Dong Energy made the announcement regarding this largest investment in offshore wind to date. Company has already placed 6 billion pounds into wind power in the UK. Currently, the largest wind farm operating is the 630 MW London Array which will be outdone by Hornsea Project One.

▼ e-Commerce company Moglix receives investment from industrialist Ratan Tata   [02-9-16]

e-Commerce company Moglix has made the announcement that it has received undisclosed financial investment from industrialist Ratan Tata. The investments have been made in e-commerce and new age technology enabled companies. Moglix is known for its expertise in B2B procurement of industrial products such as fasteners and MROs with pan Asia manufacturers. It also raised Pre-Series A funding from Accel Partners and Jungle Ventures.

▼ Cisco Systems to acquire Silicon Valley based Jasper Technologies Inc   [02-8-16]

Cisco Systems has announced that it will intend to acquire Silicon Valley based IOT startup Jasper Technologies Inc for USD 1.4 billion. Jasper offers technology to manage connected objects through cellular network with a cloud based software program, and it was valued at USD 1.4 billion in a recent venture funding round. Additionally, Jasper makes a software platform that helps for monitoring device once they are online. Cisco sees Jasper as a unique Internet of Things service platform which has over 3500 enterprise customers and 27 service providers across 100 nations.

▼ Labour Ministry has partnered with Uber, Quikr for career portal   [02-8-16]

Labour Ministry has partnered with Uber, Quickr for an amazing career portal. The labour ministry has inked a pact with 8 companies including Tech Mahindra, Quikr, Monster and Uber. 8 MoUs have been inked with the National Career Service as well as start up and job employment portals. The MoU has been signed with Uber, Quikr, Monster, Tech Mahindra, Babajobs, India Staffing Federation (ISF), Buzzmatic Ventures and GoldFish for widening the scope and scale of the project.

▼ Reliance Infrastructure Ltd ties up with Birla Corporation Ltd for sale of subsidiary   [02-8-16]

Reliance Infrastructure Limited/Rinfra on 4th February 2016 signed the signing of the Share Purchase Agreement with Birla Corporation Ltd in relation to the sale of its subsidiary Reliance Cement Company Private Limited. Rinfra is owned by ADAG while Birla Corp is the flagship company of MP Birla Group. Deal is valued at INR 4800 crore.

▼ RBI survey says GVA will increase to 7.8%   [02-8-16]

Professional forecasters have expected Gross Value Added at basic price to rise to 7.8% from 7.4% in 2015-2016. Output growth measured GVA is expected to enhance itself marginally in 2015-2016 and further in 2016-2017. Quarterly growth projections for the next 5 quarters ensure that growth is likely to peak in July-September 2016-2017. Real GVA at base price will rise by 7.8% in 2016-2017. GVA is a globally accepted measure for gauging economic activity within the nation. CSO will release GDP and GVA estimates at basic price soon. Rupee is expected to remain stable against the US dollar, according to the survey.

▼ Apple acquires LegbaCore   [02-4-16]

Technology giant Apple has acquired Cupertino based firmware security company LegbaCore in 2015, November. The acquisition came to light in December in a security researcher’s report and was confirmed recently through series of tweets from LegbaCore founder Xeno Kovah. He revealed on Twitter that he and his partner Corey Kallenberg have joined Apple as full-time employees.

▼ Technology giant Microsoft set to purchase SwiftKey   [02-4-16]

Tech major Microsoft has purchased software keyboard and SDK app maker SwiftKey. SwiftKey is a free keyword app powering more than 300 m Android and iOS devices. Through this acquisition, Microsoft will add SwiftKey Technology with World Flow Technology for Windows. SwiftKey was founded by Jon Reynolds and Ben Medlock.

▼ Lendingkart ties up with Voonik   [02-4-16]

Online financial platform Lendingkart has made the announcement of a partnership with women’s fashion marketplace Voonik to permit sellers within the platform to get free and easy short term loans. Voonik has more than 6000 merchants selling products online. It has over 7 million registered users and 5 million app downloads.

▼ Craftsvilla acquires Mumbai based demand shipping service provider   [02-3-16]

Mumbai based ethnic e-tailer Craftsvilla has acquired on demand shipping service provider Sendd for USD 4.5 million. Sendd was founded by Sargun Singh, Nav Agarwal and Sumeet Wadhwa. This is an on demand shipping service startup permitting users to send parcels. It has a 150 strong employee base.

▼ Bad banks cannot handle stressed assets: RBI Governor   [02-3-16]

Creating a question mark over efficacy of bad banks to cope with stressed assets in the country, RBI governor Raghuram Rajan has indicated such concepts work when stressed assets are mostly with private lenders and not when capitalisation is performed by the government.

▼ Reliance Entertainment forms JV with film company   [02-3-16]

ADAG owned Reliance Entertainment announced a joint venture with film maker producer duo Neeraj Pandey and Shital Bhatia owned Friday Filmworks for production of movies. Akshay Kumar starrer Rustom will be first movie under this banner. Other projects include Neeraj Pandey’s cinematic version of his novel, Ghalib Danger and films helmed by Shivam Nair, Chandra Prakash Dwivedi, Anurag Singh, Anvita Dutt and Shree Narayan Singh. It has also formed an international alliance with Steven Spielberg.

▼ CBDT has signed bilateral APAs with UK based companies   [02-2-16]

CBDT has signed APA with two UK based firms. Two APAs address the issue pf payment of management, service charges and payment of royalty. Transactions are generally prolonged and multi-layered transfer pricing.

▼ RBI makes online FDI form filling a must   [02-2-16]

RBI has made online filing of FDI forms a must from February 8th and asked banks for filing forms pertaining to FDI only online within the e-Biz portal. RBI has enabled online filing of three returns namely ARF, FCGPR and FCTRS.

▼ RBI increases WMA for states to INR 32,335 crore   [02-1-16]

RBI has increased Ways and Means Advances for INR 32,325 crore. The Ways and Means Advances has been increased for the states to INR 32,225 crore from INR 15,360 crore for current and coming financial years. WMA aimed to provide a cushion for banks to carry out their essential activities and regular financial operations. RBI has banker to state governments, has also provided financial accommodation to states for tiding over temporary mismatches in cash flow of payments and receipts.

▼ Honda Cars signs pact with Magma Fincorp   [02-1-16]

Honda Cars has tied up with Magma Fincorp for financing Honda Cars and providing loans to customers for buying vehicles. An MoU has been inked with Magma Fincorp which is a leading NBFC for financing cars across the nation. Tie up will provide a single window for purchase of car including the finance and provide better buying experience for customers.

▼ Infosys has invested INR 27 crore in Waterline Data Science    [02-1-16]

Outsourcing firm Infosys has invested INR 27 crore in California headquartered Waterline Data Science, that provides software to ensure uses can gain hidden insights from massive chunks of data. This is the 7th investment for India’s second largest software exporter from USD 500 million innovation fund. Partnership will provide value for customers to combine Waterline Data Science offerings with Infosys international presence and board industrial expertise.

▼ Dr. Agarwal’s Group of Eye Hospitals secures USD 45 million from Hong Kong based PE firm Adv Partners   [02-1-16]

Dr. Agarwal’s Group of Eye Hospitals have secured USD 45 million from Hong Kong based PE firm Adv Partners. This is one of the largest PE deals within the eye-care assignment to help healthcare firm expand through a network of eye hospitals in domestic as well as foreign shores over the next 4 years. Of a USD 45 million investment, undisclosed sum will be provided to existing investors Evolvence India. Suresh Prabhala will be inducted into the board of Adv shortly. Veda Corporate Advisors have acted as exclusive financial advisors to Dr. Agarwal’s.