Business Merger and Acquisition, Startups, Intel - Current Affairs Questions and Answers

1)   Apollo Global Management LLC has agreed to acquire which cloud services provider?

a. Rackspace
b. DigiSpace
c. TechnoSpace
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Rackspace

Cloud services provider Rackspace Hosting Inc said it would be acquired by Apollo Global Management LLC in a deal valued at USD 4.3 billion. The PE firm will boost investments in the technology sector.

  • Rackspace’s shares went up 4.3 percent at USD 31.50 in early trading on 25th August.
  • Offer represents a premium of 38.2 percent to Backspace’s closing price on August 3, the day prior to reports that the company was in advanced talks with PE firms for a go private deal.
  • Rackspace had been reported to earlier be in talks with Apollo
  • As part of the deal closing in the 4th quarter, PE firm Searchlight Capital Partners will also make an investment in Backspace
  • Apollo with USD 186 billion in assets have been stepping up investments in technology
  • Affiliates of the firm in July agreed to acquire Outerwall Inc, the owner of Redox video rental kiosks private in a deal valued at USD 1.6 billion
  • Rackspace leases server space and helps corporations store and access data in cloud.
  • It has focused on growing its cloud business in the face of rising competition from established players such as IBM Corp, Microsoft and startups in the field
  • Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, RBC Capital Markets LLC and Barclays were financial advisors while Goldman Sachs and Co advised Backspace.
  • Financing for the deal is being provided by CItigroup, Deutsch Bank, Barclays, Royal Bank of Canada are providing financing for the deal
  • Paul, Weiss Rifkind and Wharton & Garrison LLP are legal advisers to Apollo while Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati is Rackspace’s Legal Adviser.

2)   Which company acquired 5 destination management units of Kuoni Group in June 2017?

a. Sterling Holidays
b. Thomas Cook India Group
c. Lonely Planet
d. National Geographic
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Thomas Cook India Group

Thomas Cook India Group, the holding company of Fairfax in India, has acquired five destination management companies of Kuoni Group for ₹125 crore.

The acquisition will deliver greater synergies and growth opportunities across inbound, outbound, MICE and corporate travel businesses.

In April, the company had entered into an agreement with Kuoni to acquire these businesses located in Asia, Australia, Middle East, Africa and Americas and the deal closed on June 29, 2017.

The acquisition will enable Thomas Cook India Group to expand its global footprint to 21 countries in 4 continents.

These companies include Asian Trails in Asia Pacific, Allied T Pro in North America, Desert Adventures in Middle East, ATM in Australia and Private Safaris across Southern and Eastern Africa.

With the addition of 17 new countries through the acquisition, Thomas Cook India Group’s travel business network had expanded significantly adding 1,000 crore to the company’s top line and ₹25 crore to profit before tax (PBT).

Prior to this acquisition, the Group’s Thomas Cook (India), SOTC Travel, TCI-SITA and Kuoni Hong Kong had a network spanning 4 countries which include India, Sri Lanka, Mauritius and Hong Kong.

Post acquisition, The Thomas Cook India Group’s employee strength has gone up to 6,500 people in 21 countries. It has a combined revenue of ₹8,700 crore.

The acquisition of a significant part of Kuoni’s Global Destination Management network represents an important milestone for a rapidly growing Thomas Cook India Group.

3)   Which of the following are the funds setup for startups?

a. Alternate Investment Funds
b. Fund of Funds of Start Ups
c. Both a and b
d. None of these
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both a and b

Union Cabinet on 22nd March 2017 approves the proposal to establish the Fund of Funds of Startups or FFS.

Union Cabinet in 2016 approved the proposal to establish a Fund of Funds for Startups with total corpus of INR 10,000 crore.

AIFs supported by FFS should invest at least twice the amount of contribution received from FFS in Startups.

If the account committed for a startup has not been released before a startup ceases, the balance funding can continue thereafter.

Operating expenses out of the FFS to the extent of 0.50 percent of the commitments made to AIFs and outstanding.

Operating expenses include carrying due diligence, legal and technical appraisal, meeting of Venture Capital Investment Committee etc.

Operating expenses will be debited to fund at the beginning of each half year on April and October 1.

Fund of Funds for Startups was approved by Union Government in 2016.

Fund of Funds for Startups is being managed by SIDBI.

FFS contributes to SEBI registered Alternative Investment Funds that may go up to a maximum of 35 percent of the corpus of the AIF concerned.

4)   Which ride sharing app has acquired Pune based startup FinitePaths?

a. Lyft
b. Uber
c. Ola
d. TaxiForSure
Answer  Explanation 


Ride sharing app aggregator Lyft has acquired Pune based FinitePaths for an undisclosed amount.

Trail Answers, the app created by FinitePaths will be shut down and cofounders will join the Lyft team.

FinitePaths was set up in November 2015 with the move to leverage technology to enable people to take better decisions.

The app Trail Answers enabled answers to questions using social, contextual and local signals.

The company has been founded by Vinay Kakade and Balaji Raghavan, who worked with Amazon and Google respectively before setting up the firm.

The cofounders will now work with Lyft to help in expanding its infrastructure and services.

Following this acquisition, the company has stopped signing up new users and will shut down the app over the next two weeks.

Lyft: Know More

  • Founded: 2012
  • CEO: Logan Green (Jun 2012)
  • Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States
  • Founders: Logan Green, John Zimmer

5)   Where is the country's largest startup incubator to be set up?

a. Hubballi
b. Bengaluru
c. Mysuru
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Hubballi

The Deshpande Foundation, the philanthropy arm of Silicon Valley entrepreneur Gururaj ‘Desh’ Deshpande, will launch the country’s largest start-up incubation centre at Hubballi.

The foundation aims to promote entrepreneurship in India’s tier-II and tier-III cities.

It is investing INR 30 crore in the centre, to be opened this September and able to seat 1,200 people at any point.

Housing a makers lab, a 3D printing lab, hardware labs and an IOT lab, the centre will try to attract entrepreneurs from across sectors and any background, to build new-age solutions.

A ‘sandbox’ location has been created to allow entrepreneurs to test and nurture their ideas into businesses.

His foundation has set up two more sandboxes. One is in Varanasi, the constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and another in neighbouring Telangana.

The Hubballi centre will continue to be funded by the Deshpande Foundation.

About Deshpande Foundation

  • Deshpande Foundation is a non-governmental organization founded in 1996 by Gururaj and Jaishree Deshpande.
  • Founded: 1996
  • Headquarters: Massachusetts
  • Type: Non-governmental organization

6)   Oculus has acquired which eye tracking technology startup?

a. The Eye Tribe
b. Eye Sight
c. Eye Power
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: The Eye Tribe

Facebook’s virtual reality-focused Oculus division has acquired eye-tracking technology startup The Eye Tribe based in Denmark for an undisclosed amount.

The Eye Tribe startup was founded in 2011 by four students from the IT University of Copenhagen. It develops software that enables eye control on mobile devices and computers, allowing hands-free navigation.

The acquisition will benefit Facebook’s Oculus to integrate eye-tracking software to its Rift VR (virtual reality) headset, allowing users to control actions by moving their eyes.

Oculus, a virtual reality company, was acquired by Facebook in 2014 for 2 billion dollars. It had rolled out two new features - Parties and Rooms - for Samsung Gear VR.


CEO: Brendan Iribe

Founded: 2012, Irvine, California, United States

Headquarters: Menlo Park

Acquisition date: March 25, 2014

Founders: Jack McCauley, Brendan Iribe, Palmer Luckey

Head organization: Facebook, Inc.

7)   Where is the Incubation centre (first of its kind) for startups in environmental conservation being set up?

a. Indore
b. Ahmedabad
c. Vadodara
d. Bhopal
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Indore

In a first, a special incubation centre for start-ups working on environment conservation is being set up in Indore.

Three entrepreneurs each from Ahmedabad, Vadodara and Indore have been finalised to start operations at the centre from December 22.

Located at the Govindram Sekseriya Institute of Management and Research premises, it aims to provide a platform to budding entrepreneurs working in the field of solar energy, biogas, biomass and other environment related subjects.

This incubation centre is part of the MP Incubation and Start-up scheme 2016. We have not taken any fund from the government.

The incubation centre will not only help the entrepreneurs but also inspire the existing college students to come up with their ventures.

Out of the 62 applications from across the country a special panel of 50 mentors specialised in the fields of energy conversation, three projects were selected after analysis and evaluation.

The mentors will have 6 - 8 per cent equity share in the startups.

The incubation centre has tied up with 10 investors across the country. The team of experts include solar energy specialist Deepak Gadhia, Ganjana Joshi and Dipal Chandra Barua among others.

8)   GE aims to start AI capabilities to compete with which company?

a. IBM
b. HCL
c. Apple
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 


General Electric on 15th Nov 2016 acquired two tech startups to build the AI capability to compete with IBM’s Watson product

  • Acquisitions of Bit Stew Systems and will expand its Predix platform for industrial internet applications, which connects big machines such as power plants and aircraft engines to databases and analytical software.
  • Terms of the deals weren't publicly disclosed.
  • is based in Berkeley California and has advanced machine learning technology
  • AI has a branch called machine learning which allows computers to adapt to new data without fresh programming
  • Bit Stew is a Vancouver based Canadian firm backed by GE’s venture capital arm
  • It applies machine learning to large data sets associated with utilities, aviation, oil and gas production and manufacturing, according to the company's web site.
  • IBM’s Watson is among the better known AI systems which enables computers to perform intelligent actions such as recognising voices and making decisions

9)   Russia’s Rosneft Oil Company and its partners on 15th Oct 2016 acquired India’s second biggest private oil firm. Which corporate group does the unit belong to?

a. Reliance
b. Essar
c. Shell
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 


Russia’s Rosneft Oil Company along with its partners on 15th Oct 2016 acquired India’s second biggest private oil firm Essar Oil in an all cash deal valued at USD 13 billion

  • Rosneft’s partners include Rosneft Oil Company, United Capital Partners and Trafigura
  • The acquisition was announced during the 8th BRICS Summit in Goa
  • Rosneft will have a 49 percent stake in the refinery, port and petrol pumps of Essar Oil
  • The remaining partners will split the 49 percent equity equally
  • Remaining 2 percent will be held by minority shareholders after the delisting of Essar Oil
  • Deal includes USD 10.9 billion for Essar’s Vadinar refinery and USD 2 billion for the port terminal that feeds the refinery
  • It also includes Essar Oil’s debt of USD 4.5 billion and USD 2 billion debt with the port company and power plant
  • Rosneft now becomes the third international player after after Royal Dutch and Shell and British Petroleum to enter the Indian fuel retailing market
  • Essar Oil a subsidiary of Essar Group is a fully integrated oil & gas company and is among the largest single site refineries in Vainer, Gujarat with the capacity of 20 MT
  • Essar Oil has a portfolio of offshore and onshore oil and gas blocks with around 1.7 billion barrels of oil equivalent in reserves and resources
  • The company was established in 1969
  • Essar Group is led by Shashi Ruia and Ravi Ruia

10)   Virtual merger has taken place in which corporate group?

b. Birla
c. Godrej
d. Reliance
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Reliance

Reliance Communications (RCom) and Reliance Jio (RJio) are working together through a “virtual merger” of their infrastructure such as spectrum and towers and the two companies are reaping the synergies, according to RCom president Anil Ambani.

  • “What we have accomplished is a virtual merger between Rcom and RJio. Our spectrum is shared, our network is shared, our towers are shared, our fibre shared, our voice is shared and every effort to reap synergies, every effort to lower our costs, to be capital light has been achieved,”- he said in an official statement.
  • RCom has a full 4G LTE long term evolution network on a pan Indian basis without capital expenditure on the balance sheet
  • Assets shared and traded with Rjio have ensured RCom does not shell out entire capital expenditure
  • RCom is also unlikely to bid at the upcoming spectrum auction given that RJio has deposited Rs.6,500 crore as earnest money deposit,
  • The proposed merger with Aircel will create wealth for shareholders
  • RCom expects a deal soon for its tower business, he said.

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