Companies and Markets

Companies & Markets

General insurers expect drones to boost business

Not just large e-commerce players, even the insurance industry is excited about the possibilities of drone delivery of products after the civil aviation ministry released the draft guidelines on the drone policy last week. But the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) is still silent on regulations for insuring doorstep delivery of products and services through drones or the use of drones for surveying damages and claims.

Traders resent RIL bid to enter e-commerce

Traders, who have been critical of the operations of FDI-funded multi-national e-commerce biggies, are not happy about the entry of Reliance Industries either. They want rules to be applicable alike for both multinationals and domestic players.

However, the industry reckons that it would be tougher to get the new norms eased for multinational players, with Reliance announcing its foray into the e-commerce sector.

10,840 becomes key support zone

The domestic market managed to close with moderate gains amid hi­ghly volatile trades. The S&P BSE Sensex ended 52.79 points, or 0.15 per cent, to close at 36,374.08, while the Nifty 50 Index rose 14.90 points, or 0.14 per cent, to end at 10,905.20.

The S&P BSE Mid-cap Index fell 0.3 per cent, the Small-cap Ind­ex fell 0.33 per cent. The market breadth was negative with 1,043 shares rising and 1,521 shares falling on the BSE.

Technical view

Aurobindo to acquire 7 oncology products from US firm

Aurobindo Pharma on Thursday said it will acquire a portfolio of seven branded oncology injectable products from US-based Spectrum Pharmaceuticals Inc in a $300 million deal (over Rs 2,100 crore) which includes an upfront cash payment of $160 million.

According to the definitive agreements inked between the two companies, Acrotech Biopharma, a subsidiary of Aurobindo, will pay an upfront purchase price of $160 million in cash plus up to $140 million on achieving regulatory and sales-based milestones for the seven products.

HUL net up 9%, but market not happy

FMCG major Hindustan Unilever (HUL) on Thursday reported a 9 per cent increase in its net profit to Rs 1,444 crore for the December 2018 quarter on account of strong volume growth and improved margins.

The company's net profit stood at Rs 1,326 crore in the October-December period  of the previous fiscal.

Sales during the quarter under review stood at Rs 9,357 crore, up 12.42 per cent, as against Rs 8,323 crore in the corresponding period of the last fiscal, HUL said in a regulatory filing.

Singed Shalimar Paints plans mega come back

Shalimar Paints, pre-independent India’s first decorative paints and industrial colours company founded by two British entrepreneurs AN Turner and AC Wright in 1902, has embarked on an ambitious come back programme.

The company’s Nashik plant was gutted in a major fire tragedy in November 2016, following which the company had incurred huge financial losses, complete depletion of working capital, severe brand erosion and ebbing away of a sizable chunk of its mind and market share.

Goyal offers to put in Rs 700 cr in Jet Airways

State Bank of India (SBI) on Thursday said the lenders are considering a resolution plan for Jet Airways to ensure the long-term viability of the debt-laden company even as its chief Naresh Goyal offered to invest up to Rs 700 crore in the beleagured airline on the condition that his stake does not fall below 25 per cent.

Gujarat cotton output may fall 48% this year

Gujarat may lose its position as the largest cotton producer this year as output of the natural fibre during 2018-19 is projected to fall nearly 48 per cent to 5.2 million bales (per bale of 170 kg) due to drought in most producing areas, said a senior official at the directorate of agriculture, Gujarat government.

“Groundnut output is also projected to be sharply lower compared to last year, as per the second advance estimates.

SBI: Only preserving time value of money in Essar

State Bank of India’s (SBI) decision to put on sale its entire exposure of Rs 15,431.44 crore to beleaguered Essar Steel on a full-cash basis is guided by the need to preserve the time value of money, its chairman Rajnish Kumar told Financial Chronicle on Thursday.

SBI is incurring Rs 4.25 crore interest loss a day, Kumar said.

Legal experts said SBI, which is the lead banker in the committee of creditors (CoC), is well within its rights to put on sale its entire exposure in Essar Steel even when the hearing is on in the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT).

Adani Group forays into petchem sector

Gautam Adani-led Adani Group on Monday announced its foray into the rapidly growing petrochemical sector that will take competition head-on with country’s largest corporate Reliance Industries in its home turf in Gujarat.