PM’s pet GeM portal contract goes to loss making firm

The awarding of a Rs 1,000 crore contract for one of prime minister’s pet projects, GeM portal, to a small and a loss making company has raised eyebrows in the country’s IT circles. The Government e-Marketplace (GeM), under the Union commerce and industry ministry, has awarded this ambitious and innovative online e-commerce portal to a consortium led by Chennai-based Intellect Design Arena. The consortium also includes e-commerce company Infibeam.

Building brand ‘Indywood’

Sharjah-headquartered Aries Group promoted by Kerala-born NRI businessman Sohan Roy is working on to build ‘Indywood’ as the biggest brand in Indian film and entertainment industry, encompassing all regional language film industries. The company has floated ‘Billionaires Club’ to educate movers and shakers about the vast opportunities in the sector and how it can be tapped effectively.

Rosogolla gets geographical tag to end bitter rivalry

India has awarded a “geographical indications” tag to rosogolla, the king of Indian sweets, after a years-long battle between two neighboring states over the ownership rights.

Luscious rosogolla, or sweet cheese balls dripping with sugar syrup, have long been a favorite dessert across the Indian subcontinent and among the diaspora.

But two eastern states, West Bengal and Odisha, have been arguing over the origins of rosogolla, which means a ball of sweet. They consulted historians and produced old documents to support their claims.

Emami adds to its personal care and healthcare capacity

Emami Ltd, the FMCG flagship of Rs 50000 crore diversified Emami Group, has added 1.1 lakh MTPA capacity to its personal care and healthcare items portfolio, by putting up its largest manufacturing facility at Pacharia in Kamrup district of Assam with a total capital outlay of Rs 300 crore. At present, the company has an overall production capacity of 1.63 lakh MTPA of personal care and healthcare products, top company officials said on Tuesday. The new unit will increase the company’s overall capacity to 2.73 lakh MTPA.

FMCGs: Awaiting a turnaround

The GST Council, which met on November 9 and 10 and decided to cut the rates on three-fourths of the 200 items in the peak 28 per cent tax bracket to the lower GST bracket of 18 per cent, retained certain products like air conditioners, washing machines, paints and cement in the highest bracket. White and brown goods manufacturers and companies engaged in the consumer durables business already indicated that primary sales had been impacted by de-stocking by dealers, post-GST, while primary sales remained strong and, in fact, benefitted from lucrative offers extended by retailers.

Handloom, handicraft artisans seek complete waiver of GST

Notwithstanding the reduction of GST on the handloom and handicraft sector, discontent artisans today sought complete waiver waiver of tax on such products.

Handloom and handicraft artisans today participated in a seminar here organised by the Crafts Council of India on GST, and demanded withdrawal of the new tax.

"We will take a resolution after the seminar based on the demands from the artisans and will send a representation to the GST Council," Crafts Council President Kasturi Gupta Menon said.

Sresta gets into ready-to-cook food

Hyderabad-based Sresta Natural Bio Products, one of India’s largest organic food companies, and makers of India’s largest organic brand- ‘24 Mantra’, is not only gearing up to tap the fast growing organic market more aggressively, but buoyant over the success of its farming methodology and business strategies, it is now seamlessly foraying into newer segments like ‘Ready to Cook’, ‘Bites’ (Snacking Range), ‘7 Grain Atta’, ‘Methi Atta with 7 Grains’, ‘Quinoa’ and so on.

Shristi Hotel eyes pan India presence

Shristi Hotel Private Ltd, the hotel arm of the Kanoria family-promoted Shristi Group, is looking at both organic and inorganic growth to spread its wing nationally. While it has already bought large parcels of lands at Udaypur and Pondicherry to build luxury resorts, the company is also on the look out for operational and running hotel properties across all major metros to put up business hotels, resorts and hotels of other formats, said Sujit Kanoria, trustee, Kanoria Foundation and managing director, Shristi.