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IIMA, World Gold Council join hands to set up India Gold Policy Centre

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The Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA), India's top business school, and the World Gold Council (WGC) today announced the setting up of the India Gold Policy Centre, a first-of-its-kind initiative that will conduct cutting-edge research on all aspects of the Indian gold industry.
 
The objective of the ‘India Gold Policy Centre’ is to develop insights into how the significant stocks of gold that India owns can be used to advance growth, employment, social inclusion and the economic wealth of the nation, a press release from WGC said.
 
It said the centre would conduct research that has a practical application and that the industry and all stakeholders can use, leading to the development of an effective gold ecosystem in the country.
 
“As part of the initiative taken by IIMA to connect more closely with practice, and in line with our vision to contribute and reach out to industry, the Gold Centre will provide innovative solutions and insights for the gold industry through cutting-edge research,” said Prof. Ashish Nanda, Director, IIMA.
 
“The research is intended to study the growth and development of the gold industry in India and globally. I am thankful to the World Gold Council for supporting this initiative,” he added.
 
The release said the move would help IIMA enhance its research environment. The management school has recently been engaging with different organisations and industry bodies to support and encourage research at the institute.
 
Likewise, the WGC also believes there is a need for rigorous research on how gold can benefit the Indian economy and society as a whole.
 
Mr Somasundaram PR, Managing Director, India, World Gold Council said: “It is estimated that India holds around 22,000 tonnes of gold valued at over a trillion US dollars. This historic asset can be used to enhance the nation’s prosperity by putting it to work for the economy, creating jobs, developing skills, generating exports and revenues. To develop gold’s potential, we need to understand gold’s role in the Indian economy, through high quality data, insights and research.”
 
“It is important that the Centre is established by a highly respected academic body, so we approached the IIMA to establish a dedicated and exclusive ‘India Gold Policy Centre’. This will be a world class centre of excellence, conducting cutting edge applied research on the Indian gold industry, providing analytics, data and pragmatic recommendations that can be used by all stakeholders. Our joint vision is that the Centre will be the foremost provider of insights into the way in which gold contributes to our economy and our society,” he said.
 
Situated within the campus of IIMA, the centre is being set up with a financial grant from the World Gold Council and will operate independently. The centre will commence its operations from December 2014, the release added.
 
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Nippon Life to raise stake in Reliance Capital Asset Management from 26% to 49%

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Japan's Nippon Life Insurance (NLI), a Fortune 100 company and the seventh largest life insurer in the world, has agreed to increase its stake in Reliance Capital Asset Management (RCAM), a part of Reliance Capital.
 
NLI will be increasing its stake in Reliance Capital Asset Management from the existing 26 per cent to 49 per cent in two or more tranches, a press release from RCAM said.
 
The Japanese company will be investing an aggregate value of Rs 657 crore (US$ 108 million) to acquire an additional stake of 9% in RCAM in the first tranche, to reach a 35% stake. The transaction pegs RCAM's valuation at Rs 7,300 crore ($ 1.2 billion), the highest valuation till date for any asset management company in the country. 
 
The first tranche of the transaction is expected to be completed within the current financial year, subject to receipt of regulatory approvals. Subsequently, Nippon Life Insurance will have an option to increase its stake further by an additional 14 
per cent, to reach 49 per cent, in tranches, the release said.
 
“We welcome Nippon’s decision to further strengthen this partnership and acquire an additional stake in our asset management company. We strongly believe their expanded role in the company will accelerate our growth, reach and performance," said Mr. Sam Ghosh, CEO, Reliance Capital.
 
“Our partnership with Reliance Group is an exemplary example of successful collaboration between two big corporations and countries. We look forward to strengthening this relationship and using the collective experience of the two corporations to the advantage of the two global economies," said Mr. Yoshinobu 
Tsutsui, President, Nippon Life Insurance.
 
The release said the boards of directors of both the companies had approved the stake increase by the Japanese partner, subject to regulatory approvals.
 
According to it, RCAM is the largest asset manager in India managing Rs. 2,18,338 crore ($ 36.0 billion) as on September 30, 2014, across mutual funds, pension funds, managed accounts and offshore funds.
 
Nippon Life Insurance is already a strategic partner in RCAM, having acquired 26 per cent stake in the company at an aggregate value of Rs 1,450 crore ($ 240 million) in 2012. The transaction pegged the total valuation of RCAM at approximately Rs 5,600 crore ($ 920 million).
 
Nippon Life is a 125-year-old global Fortune 100 company and manages nearly $ 500 billion (Rs 30 lakh crore) in assets, amongst the largest total assets in the world for any life insurer. The company is the seventh largest life insurer in the world and the number 1 private life insurer in Asia and Japan, the release added.
 
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Actor Dilip Kumar tweets to assure fans he is well after rumours on social media

File photo of actor Dilip Kumar and his actress wife Saira Bano
File photo of actor Dilip Kumar and his actress wife Saira Bano
Veteran actor Dilip Kumar took to micro-blogging site Twitter to confirm to his fans that he was hale and hearty after rumours about his health spread through social media yesterday evening.
 
The rumours left many of his fans in shock till well-known actor Amitabh Bachchan rubbished them as a hoax.
 
"Some baseless rumours being spread about Yusuf Saheb - Dilip Kumar, being ill .. Saira ji just informed me he is perfectly fine !" Bachchan said on Twitter.
 
Later, Dilip Kumar, 91, himself made a rare post on the site. "Phone calls from all over the world. All night. Your love and prayers and Allah's blessings cannot be thanked enough," he said, and promised his fans that he would interact with them more regularly on the site.
 
Bollywood celebrities are often victims of such hoaxes and Dilip Kumar himself was subject one such rumour in 2011, when his wife and former actress Saira Banu had issued a statement to assure people that he was well.
 
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Christie's second auction in India to be held in Mumbai on December 11

Tyeb Mehta's 'Falling Bull'
Tyeb Mehta's 'Falling Bull'
Fine arts auction house Christie's second auction in India will take place on December 11 in Mumbai, featuring, among other items, one of V S Gaitonde's last works and early works by artists like S H Raza, Tyeb Mehta, Frances Newton Souza and Ram Kumar.
 
Ten works donated by leading Indian contemporary artists will be sold to support Khoj International Artists' Association, a press release from Christie's said today.
 
The auction will also offer works by other renowned artists such as the Tagores and Jamini Roy.
 
Artists such as Subodh Gupta and Bharti Kher are among those who have donated works for Khoj, the artist residency programme established in India in 1997.
 
The auction will also include significant works and items by some of India's designated National Treasure artists, which are considered of such importance to the cultural development of India that they cannot leave the country, the release said.
 
The auction will take place on December 11 at 7 pm at the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai with a pre-sale viewing open to the public, from December 9-11. A selection of works will also be publicly previewed in New Delhi at The Taj Mahal Hotel from November 28-30.
 
"Our first auction held here a year ago was a great success, and once again we have worked hard to curate a sale of the highest quality with an offering that covers India's most important modern and contemporary art movements. Along with the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, our Mumbai sale will act as a finale to a year which began with the successful annual India Art Fair in Delhi, and was highlighted by the opening of the V.S. Gaitonde retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum in New York in October. It has been a great year in which many have come together from around the world to shed new light on Indian art and culture," Sonal Singh, Head of Department, Mumbai, said.
 
She said Christie's is delighted to have been asked to support all three initiatives.
 
Tyeb Mehta's (1925-2009) painting Untitled (Falling Bull), in which his mastery of composition and economy of line is evident, will lead the sale.
 
Showing the central figure of a bull on a rickshaw set against blocks of vivid color, it showcases Mehta's recurring motif: "For me, the trussed bull is a compulsive image". The 1999 canvas is estimated at Rs 8,50,00,000-12,00,00,000 ($1,385,500-1,956,00), the release said.
 
One of the last works by the internationally recognized artist Gaitonde (1924-2001), for sale just six weeks after the opening of a retrospective of his work at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, will be another highlight of the auction. Offered by a private collector in India, it was painted in 1998, the last year he is known to have worked and only a few years before his death. Painted in vibrant hues of green, this painting is expected to sell for Rs 5,50,00,000-7,00,00,000 ($896,500-1,141,000) and has never been offered for sale at auction before, it said.
 
A remarkable pocket book belonging to the artist, Nobel Laureate, poet and philosopher Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941) is a most unique addition to the sale. The journal, written in Bengali in Tagore's hand, is a rare mixture of poetry, art and introspection. Covering the years 1889 to 1904, the pages reveal the private concerns of Tagore, from mundane land transactions and taxation, to a poem written as a guide for children learning to read. The book was given by Tagore to a teacher at Santiniketan, Subodh Chandra Mazumder, and is being offered by his descendants. 
 
Tagore composed many of his major poems and songs in this book, including poems from the Sonar Tari( Golden Boat) series and 19 poems from the Swaran series. Nothing similar by the Nobel Laureate has been offered before for sale at auction in India, (estimate Rs 40,00,000-60,00,000 / $65,200-97,800).
 
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Early works by four of the masters of Indian modernism, Raza, Ram Kumar,  Souza and Mehta, all of whom studied or practised art in Europe, reflect their engagement with western modernism. A family portrait by Souza (1924-2002) from 1947 is being offered for the first time at auction, (estimate: Rs 4,60,00,000-6,20,00,000 / $750,000-1,010,600). It depicts a poor, half-clad family of four sitting in front of a house in which one or more of them are probably employed. Through the window a table is laden with fresh fruit, fish and wine, a striking contrast to their circumstances. In letters, Souza confirmed that he had considered an alternative title, 'The Proletariat and the Plutocrat's Dinner'. 
 
Mehta's Girl in Love, from 1957, which will be offered at an estimate of Rs 70,00,000 - 90,00,000 / $114,000-147,000 is a tender portrait and a magnificent example of the artist's early work, complementing his Untitled (Falling Bull). 
 
A view of Parisian rooftops from the 1950s by Raza (b. 1922) Les toits de la rue St. Jacques, is estimated at Rs 3,00,00,000-40,00,00,000 ($489,000-652,000 ).Finally Ram Kumar's Orphans, showing two destitute young men, painted in 1956 soon after his return from Paris, is estimated at Rs 2,25,00,000-2,75,00,000 ($366,800-448,300).
 
A small group of rare, unseen canvases and works on paper from the 1970s by Nasreen Mohamedi (1937-1990) are offered for sale from the collection of Neelam Mansingh Chowdhry, theatre artist, and close friend to the artist. 
 
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The release said works would be of special interest given their provenance and following the recent exhibitions of Mohamedi's work at the Tate Liverpool in the United Kingdom and the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art in New Delhi. The artist, well known as India's great modern minimalist, studied in London at St. Martin's School of Art and then in a print atelier in Paris. She settled in Bombay and was mentored by V.S. Gaitonde before moving to Delhi and then to Baroda, where she taught at the M.S. University's Faculty of Fine Arts. Here the two canvases and three other works on paper reflect, in their great simplicity, Mohamedi's lifelong dedication to minimalism, in her art and other aspects of her life (estimates from Rs 18, 00,000 / $29,300).
 
Just as a major exhibition of the work of Atul Dodiya (b.1959) opens at the Bhau Daji Lad Museum in Mumbai, his Untitled portrait of Picasso from 1981 (estimate: Rs 4,00,000-6,00,000 / $6,500-9,800) and a later work from 2011 (sold to benefit Khoj) will be offered in the Mumbai auction.
 
Offered alongside the modern art is a group of 10 contemporary works by artists including Subodh Gupta, Rashid Rana, Mithu Sen, Thukral & Tagra, Nilima Sheikh and Bharti Kher, to benefit the Delhi based Khoj International Artists' Association. All the artists have donated works to Khoj exclusively for this sale, the release added.
 
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U Sports partners with Bundesliga’s TSG 1899 Hoffenheim for football training program

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U Sports, the sports division of Unilazer Ventures, founded by Mr. Ronnie Screwvala, today announced the launch of U-Dream, a football training and academic program designed to develop Indian football talent who can place India on the professional football circuit. 
 
In collaborative guidance of Bundesliga, U Sports has partnered with TSG 1899 Hoffenheim for the first edition of U-Dream football, aimed at creating a rich ecosystem of Indian talent with an objective of transforming them into global athletes, a press release from Unilazer said.
 
"In a country with a population of over 1.2 billion, U-Dream program will offer an opportunity to talented footballers and their parents to foresee and opt for a full-fledged career in professional football. U-Dream is among the very few programs which offers international football coaching and strong academic qualifications at the same time," it said.
 
The release said the initiative was aimed at building a deep seeded foundation for the development and transformation of Indian football. It will encourage participation from talented football players of 13 or 14 years of age, in the first year where the focus is to transform young talent into a pro-team of Under-17 footballers. However, the search will widen to Under-13, Under-15 and Under-17 categories from the year 2016, it said.
 
U-Dream program will start with talent selection tournaments conducted between January and April, 2015, across 50 cities which will witness participation from 1000 schools. 
 
In 2016, the program aims to deepen its reach by widening the search to 100 cities, registering participation from 2000 schools. 
 
An expert judging panel comprising of Subrata Paul – Project Adviser, Mahesh Gawli – Chief of Training and Lutz Pfannenstiel – International Advisor TSG Hoffenheim will oversee the selection process to identify the finest talent from across the country who will be sent to Germany for the six-year residential program. A team of five Indian coaches and three German coaches and scouts will closely monitor the tournaments in each city.
 
This year, only 30 finest footballers identified from the massive talent hunt will be sent to Zuzenhausen, in Germany where they will train at TSG 1899 Hoffenheim’s youth training academy with complete access to the club’s  facilities and infrastructure.
 
To ensure there is an equal focus on the young footballer’s academic development along with football training, U Sports has also collaborated with Motilal Nehru School of Sports, Rai. Founded by the government of Haryana, its primary objective is to provide excellent education facilities with equal emphasis on sports to deserving students. Motilal Nehru School of Sports will be conducting a 10-day schooling camp for the 30 athlete students and their parents at the school campus prior to their departure where they will be briefed on the curriculum, course structure and program tutors.
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The 30 student athletes will undergo CBSE education coupled with German language training in the first year of U-Dream program. In the second year, they will have an option to continue with CBSE schooling or apply for admission in the German Public Education system. The program will also offer expert counselling to the players to help them decide on the course of action if they wish to opt for German education.
 
Mr. Supratik Sen, CEO – U Sports said, “Over 20,000 football players across the globe earn more than $ 1 million a year which suggests that there are very few careers as exceptional as a professional footballers."
 
"It is time Indian talent makes its mark on the world football map. Our alliance with Germany starting with TSG 1899 Hoffenheim will set the ball rolling as it will build a strong talent pool who will compete in the developed and evolved football market.  With the prospect of igniting sports development in the country, U-Dream program will not only serve as a platform for potential players but will also equip them with education and infrastructure support hence taking them closer to their dream of becoming a pro player. We hope to reach out to a much larger pool of aspirants in the coming year by widening our search for the finest Under-17 football talent who will represent India in Under-17 World Cup in 2017," he said.
 
Mr. Thomas Richter, Head of Hoffenheim’s Match Operations and First-team Administration, who is also responsible for the club’s internationalization said, “Talent development at the grass-root level is paramount in the Bundesliga and is the key in placing India in the international football circuit as this can serve as an opportunity to produce the finest football talent from the country, who are groomed from a young age. We are glad to collaborate with U Sports for this unique program which offers an ideal platform to the youth to train and grow in the sport. As an ongoing plan, these players will build a strong back bone for the development of football in India.”
 
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Essar Oil appoints Manish Maheshwari as CEO - Exploration & Production

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Essar Oil Limited, a part of the Essar Group, today announced the appointment of Mr.Manish Maheshwari as Chief Executive Officer - Exploration & Production (E&P).
 
Mr Maheshwari has about 23 years of experience in the industry and ws until recently the Managing Director of Hindustan Oil Exploration Company Ltd (HOEC), a press release from the company said.
 
As CEO-E&P, Mr. Maheshwari would be responsible for Essar’s entire E&P business, which includes 15 blocks and fields in various stages of exploration and production in India, Indonesia, Madagascar, Nigeria and Vietnam. The total reserves and resources across these assets is estimated to be 2,034 mmboe. 
 
Essar’s development and production assets include the Raniganj coal bed methane (CBM) Block in West Bengal, Ratna& R Series in Mumbai Offshore, and the Mehsana Block in Gujarat. At Raniganj, the current gas production is about 300,000 standard cubic metres per day (scm/d), which shall ramp up to 3 million scm/d. The company has drilled 230 wells and laid requisite infrastructure including pipelines to supply CBM Gas to end consumers.  
 
Mr Maheshwari has previously served as Investment Manager in a Danish Investment Fund where he developed strategy for investments in East European Countries aligned to promoting Scandinavian companies interest. Before moving to Denmark, he spent about.12 years with companies like Tata Industries Ltd. and Hindustan Unilever Ltd. 
 
He has a Bachelor (Hons.) degree in Chemical Engineering and Masters in Business Administration from Strathclyde University, U.K.
 
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L&T Technology Services closes acquisition of Dell’s Engineering Services

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L&T Technology Services, a wholly owned subsidiary of the $14.3 billion Larsen & Toubro (L&T) Group, today announced that it has closed the acquisition of the assets of US-based Dell Product and Process Innovation Services, the engineering services division of Dell.
 
With the close of this acquisition, L&T Technology Services will provide one of the industry's most comprehensive ER&D service offerings for transportation customers, through its global delivery centers in the United States and India, a press release from the company said.
 
The release said the transaction enhances L&T Technology Services’ ability to offer differentiated technology solutions and full program management services by leveraging global-local talent base at any point in the product development cycle. 
 
Dell Engineering Services has delivery centres in Illinois, Iowa and Texas in the US and Bangalore and Hyderabad in India. The US entity of Dell Engineering Services will be part of L&T Technology Services’ North America Offsite Delivery centre.  
 
Headquartered in Peoria, Illinois, Dell Engineering Services has more than 15 years of extensive experience in Mechanical Design & Analysis, Embedded Engineering, Applied Engineering, and Manufacturing Consulting across multiple industries and has long-term relationships with marquee clients in North America, especially in the transportation industry, the release said.
 
"This acquisition enables L&T Technology Services to consolidate its position as preferred vendor in the USD $4 billion Transportation ER&D market. The acquired assets will enable L&T Technology Services to leverage the customer base and complementary capabilities of Dell Engineering Services along with L&T Technology Services’ broader portfolio of Embedded and PLM offerings, supported by a global sales force," it said.
 
Dr. Keshab Panda, Chief Executive of L&T Technology Services said: “Product engineering is undergoing structural shifts with evolving technologies, shorter development cycles, regulatory demands, and a shortage of skilled talent. This is a tremendous opportunity for us to have a strong local presence in North America where a majority of our clients are based. That along with Dell Engineering Services’ strong expertise in Embedded, and Mechanical Design & Analysis and a history of successful relationships in North America will help us ride the next level of growth.”
 
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Senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Murli Deora passes away

Senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Murli Deora passed away at his residence in Mumbai in the early hours of Monday morning after a prolonged illness.

Murli Deora
Murli Deora
Senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Murli Deora passed away at his residence here in the early hours of this morning after a prolonged illness.
 
He was 77. He is survived by his wife Hema and two sons, Milind and Mukund. Milind Deora is a former Union Minister and Lok Sabha member.
 
According to sources, Mr Deora had been unwell for a long time and had been undergoing treatment at a hospital. He had come home two days ago and breathed his last around 3.30 am today, they said.
 
Mr Deora's body will be kept at the Mumbai Congress office from noon to 2 pm today to enable party workers to pay their last respects to him. His funeral wil be held at the Chandanwadi Crematorium later in the afternoon.
 
Born on January 10, 1937 in Mumbai, Mr Deora had graduated in Economics from Mumbai and was an industrialist by profession but was also actively involved with political and social activities.
 
He had a long innings as a Municipal Corporator in Mumbai, starting from 1968 and was elected as one of the youngest Mayors of the city in 1977. He also served as a member of the Maharashtra Legislative Council from 1982-84.
 
He was elected to the Lok Sabha for the first time in 1984 from Mumbai South and was re-elected thrice in 1989, 1991 and 1998. He lost to the Bharatiya Janata Party's Jayawantiben Mehta in 1996 and 1999. In 2004, his son Milind wrested the seat back for the Congress. 
 
In between, Mr Deora was elected to the Rajya Sabha for a six-year term from 2002-08.
 
Mr Deora served as president of the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee for 22 long years from 1981 to 2003.
 
He was elected as Chairman of Parliamentarians for Global Action for 1995-96, the first Indian to hold he position. He also served as Vice-President of the Federation of International Red Cross and Crescent Society. 
 
Mr Deora was also involved with the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan and was Vice-Chairman of the Gandhi Institute of Computer Education and Information Technology set up under its auspices. He was a keen bridge player.
 
He served as Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas and Minister for Corporate Affairs and earlier as Minister of State for Communications and Information Technology in the Manmohan Singh government.
 
Mr Deora had a way with people and had friends and admirers across the political spectrum and enjoyed tremendous clout in the corridors of power in Delhi and Mumbai.
 
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ISL: Chennaiyin FC drub Mumbai City 3-0 to extend lead at the top

Chennaiyin FC players celebrate Bruno Pelissari's opening goal in their match against Mumbai City FC in the Hero Indian Super League at Navi Mumbai on November 23, 2014.Photo courtesy:ISL
Chennaiyin FC players celebrate Bruno Pelissari's opening goal in their match against Mumbai City FC in the Hero Indian Super League at Navi Mumbai on November 23, 2014.Photo courtesy:ISL
Chennaiyin FC scored a late flurry of goals to get past hosts Mumbai City FC with a 3-0 win in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) at the D Y Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai tonight.
 
Bruno Pelissari, Dhanachandra Singh and substitute Cristian Hidalgo were the scorers for the visitors.
 
The defeat saw Mumbai City’s citadel being finally breached after a run of five clean sheets in a row and they have now slipped sixth place in the table.
 
Chennaiyin (19 points), on the other hand, extended their lead at the top of the table by three points over Atlético de Kolkata.  
 
The first half turned out to be a cagey affair as both teams failed to find that killer pass or moment of brilliance to make it count. Chennai did look like they missed the presence and creativity of Elano, and the pace and directness of John Mendoza. For the hosts, Nicolas Anelka’s absence seemed to take the bite out of their attack. 
 
Chennai keeper Gennaro Bracigliano was called into action though, when Bernard Mendy lost the ball near his box, and André Moritz forced a low diving save from the Italian. The rebound came out to Tiago Ribeiro but his shot deflected off Mikaël Silvestre for a corner. 
 
Mumbai’s marquee player Freddie Ljungberg, who was on the bench, came on for the injured Moritz and played till the end.
 
Not much happened in the match till after the 70th minute, when Mumbai’s defence finally succumbed to mounting pressure from Chennaiyin. Pavel ?movš’ error proved costly for the hosts as Jeje Lalpekhlua pounced on the opportunity and played the ball across for Balwant Singh. The ball instead fell kindly for Pelissari who obliged with a well taken finish.
 
Chennai went two up when Dhanachandra made the most of a scrappy clearance from a free kick and slotted the ball calmly into the bottom corner past the Mumbai defenders.
 
The final nail in the Mumbai coffin was hammered by substitute Hidalgo who scored with a brilliant free kick past a diving Subrata Paul, after being brought down outside the box by Johan Letzelter, an effort that the missing Elano would have been proud of.
 
Peter Reid will hope to rescue his faltering campaign when Mumbai City travel to the national capital to take on Delhi Dynamos FC on November 28 while Chennaiyin travel to Guwahati for a meeting with NorthEast United FC a day earlier.
 
Match awards:
 
Hero of the Match:  Bruno Pelissari (Chennaiyin FC) 
Swift Moment of the Match: Dhanachandra Singh (Chennaiyin FC) 
Amul Fittest Player of the Match: Jan Štohanzl (Mumbai City FC)
ISL Emerging Player of the Match: Balwant Singh (Chennaiyin FC)
 
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India’s forex reserves rise by $ 419.4 million to $ 315.551 billion

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India’s foreign  exchange reserves rose by $ 419.4 million to $ 315.551 billion in the week ended November 14, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said here today.
 
The forex  reserves had fallen $ 778.4 million to $ 315.132 billion in the previous week after rising for four consecutive weeks before that.
 
In its weekly statistical supplement issued here today, the central bank said that foreign currency assets, which constitute a major chunk of the forex reserves, went up by $ 422.7 million to $ 290.062 billion during the week.
 
Foreign currency assets expressed in US dollar terms include the effect of appreciation or depreciation of non-US currencies such as the euro, pound and yen held in the reserves.
 
According to the bulletin, the country’s gold reserves remained unchanged at $ 19.738 billion, while its special drawing rights (SDRs) fell by $ 2.4 million to $ 4.229 billion during the week.
 
India's reserve position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) fell by $ 0.9 million to $ 1.521 billion during the period, the bulletin added.
 
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ING Vysya Bank to merge with Kotak Mahindra in all-stock deal

Mumbai office of ING Vysya Bank
Mumbai office of ING Vysya Bank
The Boards of Directors of Kotak Mahindra Bank and ING Vysya Bank met separately today and approved an all-stock amalgamation of ING Vysya with Kotak Mahindra, the two companies announced today.
 
A press release from the banks said the amalgamation was subject to the approval of the shareholders of Kotak and ING Vysya, respectively, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) under the Banking Regulation Act, the Competition Commission of India and such other regulatory approvals as may be required.
 
"Upon obtaining all approvals, when the merger becomes effective, ING Vysya will merge with Kotak," it said.
 
Shareholders of ING Vysya will receive shares of Kotak in exchange of shares in ING Vysya at the approved share exchange ratio.
 
"All shareholders of Kotak and ING Vysya will participate thereafter in the (merged) Kotak business. All ING Vysya branches and employees will become Kotak branches and employees," the release said.
 
ING Vysya’s CEO designate, Mr Uday Sareen, will be inducted into the top 
management of Kotak reporting directly to Mr Uday Kotak, Executive Vice Chairman and Managing Director of Kotak. 
 
Under the swap ratio worked out, ING Vysya shareholders will receive 725 shares in Kotak for 1,000 shares of ING Vysya. 
 
"The share exchange ratio is considered fair and reasonable given the underlying value of ING Vysya, as also giving shareholders the ability to benefit from the potential that can be realised upon merging into Kotak," the release said.
 
"This exchange ratio indicates an implied price of Rs.790 for each ING Vysya share based on the average closing price of Kotak shares during one month to November 19, 2014, which is a 16% premium to a like measure of ING Vysya market price," it said.
 
The proposed merger would result in issuance of approximately 15.2% of the equity share capital of the merged Kotak. 
 
The release said the Boards of Kotak and ING Vysya, respectively, considered the results of a due diligence review covering areas such as advances, investments, deposits, properties & branches, liabilities, material 
contracts and so on.
 
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S.R.Batliboi & Co., LLP, Chartered Accountants, and Price Waterhouse & Co LLP, the independent valuers appointed by Kotak and ING Vysya, had recommended the share exchange ratio, which has been accepted by the respective Boards. 
 
Avendus Capital Private Ltd. provided a Fairness Opinion to Kotak on the share exchange ratio and Edelweiss Financial Services Ltd. provided a 
Fairness Opinion to ING Vysya, the release said.
 
One of ING Vysya’s directors will be joining the Board of Directors of Kotak, it said.
 
 
 
The release said Kotak, with 641 branches and relatively deeper presence in the West and North, has a differentiated proposition for various customer segments including high networth individuals (HNIs), deep corporate relationships including emerging corporates, a wide product portfolio, including agricultural finance and consumer loans, and a robust capital position. 
 
ING Vysya has a strong customer franchise for over eight decades, with a national branch network of 573 branches and deep presence in South India, particularly in Andhra Pradesh, Telengana and Karnataka. ING Vysya has a large customer base across all segments. It is particularly noted for a best-in-class SME Business, as also for serving large international corporates in India by access to the international relationships of ING Group, it said.
 
The combined Kotak will have 1,214 branches, with a wide-spread pan-India network, getting both breadth and depth given the strong geographic complementarity between Kotak and ING Vysya. 
 
"Substantial efficiencies will arise out of the proposed merger, which is likely to result in significant benefits for all stakeholders, be it shareholders, employees or customers, and ultimately the banking industry," the release said.
 
"Customers and employees will benefit from the combined Kotak having a wider geographical spread, expertise across customer segments, such as SME, HNI, Corporates, and on products such as private banking, asset management, insurance, investment banking, NRI offerings etc.," it said.
 
"Kotak’s strong capital position potentially avoids capital raising and attendant dilution in the near to medium term for ING Vysya shareholders. Additionally, with ING Vysya nearing the cap for foreign shareholding, the merger would yield more liquidity with significant foreign headroom in Kotak even after merger, with foreign shareholding at ~47%," it said.
 
Mr Kotak said, “This is a momentous occasion that brings together two 
banking institutions with significant complementary strengths. The opportunities and synergies that this merger will create will place Kotak and its incoming stakeholders from ING Vysya on a new trajectory of excellence and leadership. I firmly believe this merger will pave the way for a bigger and better financial services player with deep Indian roots and global standards of service. Kotak values the diversity of ING Vysya, welcomes them as its family, and will work towards integrating them smoothly on this exciting journey that is ahead of us.”
 
Mr. Shailendra Bhandari, presently MD & CEO of ING Vysya Bank Ltd, said:  “Our two companies are a perfect match at a perfect time. Our customers will see tremendous value from the combined entity as we fill the gaps, in terms of a much larger footprint and a complete product suite, both national and international. Together, both companies will participate in the growth of one of India’s strongest and most successful banking franchises.”
 
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ING Vysya’s CEO designate, Mr. Uday Sareen, said, "This is a historic day in our 84 year heritage. I truly believe that the merger is a game-changer for us, laying the foundation to help us leapfrog by several years and be part of, and further scale a truly national franchise. The combination creates a company that will deliver maximum value for our shareholders, enormous opportunities for employees and deliver the entire suite of financial products and services to our customers.”
 
The release said ING Group, which owns ~43% in ING Vysya, has indicated that it supports the proposed transaction. It will become the largest non-promoter shareholder in combined Kotak. 
 
"ING Group and Kotak intend to explore areas of cooperation in cross border business, on the basis of a Framework for Future Cooperation that has been entered into, subject to mutual agreement on specific terms and all laws and regulations," the release added.
 
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Western Union enhances direct-to-bank service to India

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Global payment services major Western Union Company today said it had enhanced its international direct-to-bank transfers to select banks in India, paving the way for customers to send money in minutes to major Indian banks. 
 
"Western Union has successfully linked its retail agent network and digital transactional sites in select countries to move money in minutes to account holders of select banks via India’s revolutionary Immediate Payment Service (IMPS)," a press release from the company said.
 
It said the service is available using cash and debit cards at participating agent locations, and debit and credit cards at www.westernunion.com.com at this time.
 
Western Union President and CEO Hikmet Ersek said, “We are harnessing our system to link retail or digital transfers from major send countries to direct money into individual bank accounts of major receive countries.
 
“To date, we have connections to transfer money into bank accounts in more than 50 countries. India leads the way and we can now do it in minutes.* This is a major win for our customers. We are giving them the choice of placing cash on the counter or using cashless send options and yet sending directly into a bank account from major centres around the world.
 
“We move money that helps finance the futures of millions—largely global workers and their families. Linking our global retail Agent network with digital capability means convenience, reliability and speed for our customers,” Mr Ersek said.
 
Direct-to-bank international money transfers are preferred by customers looking for the convenience of funds received directly into a bank account and accessible on demand, 24/7, according to a Western Union user survey.
 
The in minutes delivery speed is an enhancement to the direct-to-bank money transfer services launched by Western Union last year, which delivers funds within one banking day to 140 banks in India. 
 
This service, provided in collaboration with IndusInd Bank, operates using the National Payments Corporation of India’s (NPCI) IMPS platform, which has recently been approved by the Reserve Bank of India to facilitate cross-border money transfer within minutes to select banks.
 
Western Union services are currently available at more than 112,000 agent locations in India. Western Union has transactional websites in 24 countries and a mobile app in the US and Australia to send money globally to 200 countries and territories.
 
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SEBI approves new regulations to deter insider trading in securities

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The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) today approved new regulations in place of the SEBI (Prohibition of Insider Trading) Regulations, 1992 designed to deter the practice of insider trading in the securities of listed companies.
 
The new regulations, approved by the SEBI Board which met here today, will be in place of the existing regulations, a press release from the market regulator said.
 
The release pointed out that two decades had passed since the SEBI (Prohibition of Insider Trading) Regulations, 1992 were notified and, since then, there had been several amendments to the regulations. Judicial paradigm through case laws had also evolved in India, it said.
 
To ensure that the regulatory framework dealing with insider trading in India is further strengthened, SEBI sought review of the extant Insider Trading regulatory regime and constituted a committee under the chairmanship of Justice N. K. Sodhi.
 
The SEBI Board deliberated on the recommendations of the committe today and public comments received on them.
 
"The new regulations strengthen the legal and enforcement framework, align Indian regime with international practices, provide clarity with respect to the definitions and concepts, and facilitate legitimate business transactions," the release said.
 
According to the release, the salient features of the regulations are:
 
(A) STRENGTHENING THE LEGAL AND ENFORCEMENT FRAMEWORK
 
            (i) The definition of Insider has been made wider by including persons connected on the basis of being in any contractual, fiduciary or employment relationship that allows such person access to unpublished price sensitive information (UPSI). However directors, employees and all other persons in the deeming category covered under 1992 regulations would continue to be covered. Insider will also include a person who is in possession or has access to UPSI. Now, immediate relatives will be presumed to be connected persons, with a right to rebut the presumption. In 1992 regulations, definition of connected person was largely position based.  
 
            (ii) In the case of connected persons the onus of establishing, that they were not in possession of UPSI, shall be on such connected persons.
 
            (iii)  Clear prohibition on communication of unpublished price sensitive information (UPSI) has been provided except legitimate purposes, performance of duties or discharge of legal obligations.
 
            (iv)  Considering every investor's interest in securities market, advance disclosure of UPSI at least 2 days prior to trading has been made mandatory in case of permitted communication of UPSI.
 
            (v)  UPSI has been defined as information not generally available and which may impact the price. The definition of UPSI has been strengthened by providing a test to identify price sensitive information, aligning it with listing agreement and providing platform of disclosure. Earlier, the definition of price sensitive information had reference to company only; now it has reference to both a company and securities.
 
            (vi)  Generally Available Information will be the information that is accessible to the public on a non-discriminatory platform which would ordinarily be stock exchange platform.
 
            (vii) Companies by law would be entitled to require third-party connected persons to disclose their trading and holdings in securities of the company.
 
            (viii) In line with Companies Act, 2013, prohibition on derivative trading by directors and KMPs on securities of the company has been provided.
 
 
 
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(B) ALIGNING INSIDER TRADING NORMS WITH INTERNATIONAL PRACTICES
 
            (i) The requirement of communication of UPSI in the case of legitimate business transaction has been recognized in law and a carve-out with safeguards has been provided. [Reference to A (iii) and (iv) above]
 
            (ii) Disclosure of UPSI in public domain has been made mandatory before trading, so as to rule out asymmetry of information in the market, as prevalent in other jurisdictions. [Reference to A (iv) above]
 
            (iii) A provision of Trading Plans on the lines of U.S. has been introduced for insiders with necessary safeguards. Such a plan has to be for bona fide transactions and has to be disclosed on stock exchange platform in advance.
 
(C) CLARITY IN THE DEFINITIONS AND CONCEPTS
 
            (i) With important provisions, clarificatory notes have been inserted in the regulations itself.
 
            (ii) Clarity has been brought to the definition of UPSI by aligning it with listing agreement and making the definition inclusive.
 
            (iii) To provide clarity, Generally Available Information has been defined as information that is accessible to public on a non-discriminatory platform such as stock exchange. [Reference to A (vi) above] 
 
            (iv) Clarity about timing of disclosure of UPSI has been provided and the trading window norms have been made uniform to other connected persons.
 
(D) FACILITATING LEGITIMATE BUSINESS TRANSACTIONS
 
            (i) To facilitate legitimate business transactions, unpublished price sensitive information (UPSI) can be communicated with safeguards. [reference to A (iii) & (iv) above]
 
            (ii) Insiders who are liable to possess UPSI all round the year would have the option to formulate pre-scheduled trading plans. Trading plans would, however, to be disclosed on the stock exchanges and have to be strictly adhered to. Trading plans shall be available for bona fide transactions. 
 
            (iii) Principle based Code of Fair Disclosure and Code of Conduct has been prescribed. 
 
            (iv) In given cases, certain circumstances which can be demonstrated by an insider to prove his innocence have been provided.
 
            (v) Repeated disclosures have been removed so as to ease compliance burden and to align with Takeover Code. Disclosure of any change of 2% for persons holding more than 5% shares or voting rights has been removed as they are prescribed under Takeover Code.
 
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Reliance Jio signs syndicated term loan facilities of $ 1.5 billion

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Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited (RJIL), a subsidiary of the Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), today said it had signed a syndicated term loan facility aggregating to $ 1.5 billion.
 
The facility is guaranteed by RIL and will be used to refinance the syndicated term loan facilities aggregating to $1.5 billion tied up by RJIL in 2010, a press release from the company said.
 
The release said the facility was fully underwritten by an initial group of 15 core relationship banks that comprise the Mandated Lead Arrangers (MLAs) and Bookrunners. 
 
"The deal witnessed significant oversubscription before it was launched into syndication and two banks joined in as MLAs. The overall bank group saw participation from banks all over the world, including North America, Europe, Australia, Asia and the Middle East. This term loan syndication saw a total of 26 banks participate in the facility," it said.
 
The loan syndication comprises a $ 1 billion Facility I, which has a total maturity of 5.5 years and a $ 0.5 billion Facility II, which has a maturity of 7 years and represents the longest average maturity for an unsecured syndicated loan of similar size in Asia this year.
 
The facility was tied up at significantly better terms than the facilities being refinanced which were signed in 2010, the release said. It saw tremendous response in syndication and raised over $ 400 million.
 
In compliance with Reserve Bank of India (RBI) guidelines, the facility saw participation from only International banks, it said.
 
"This was one of the rare occasions when the higher tenor 7 year facility saw a strong participation in syndication: the 7 year facility saw a higher participation (in percentage terms) than the 5.5 year facility," the release said.
 
The facility saw strong participation from Middle Eastern, regional Taiwanese and Japanese banks.
 
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Air India sets up helpline desks in four metros

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National carrier Air India has set up dedicated telephone numbers in the four metro cities of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai, in addition to its all-India toll free call centre number 1800-180-1407.
 
These dedicated lines will provide information on the status of Air India flights round the clock, all seven days of the week, a press release from the airline said.
 
The helpline numbers are:
 
Delhi 011-49637522, 011-25653385 
Mumbai 022-66858097, 022-26168250 
Kolkata 033-25119982, 08336918921 
Chennai 044-22562011, 044-22566002 
 
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Canadian film producers in India to foster audio-visual ties

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A delegation of 14 Canadian film producers will take part in the 4th Forum of the Canada-India Business Council being held in Mumbai from today and in the 8th Film Bazaar that will take place in Goa on November 20-24 to activate the Canada-India Audiovisual Coproduction Treaty.
 
Telefilm Canada and the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC) are spearheading the mission with support from the High Commission of Canada in New Delhi, the Consulate General of Canada in Mumbai and the Canadian Media Production Association (CMPA).
 
In parallel, the 45th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) taking place in Goa from November 20 to November 30 will feature five Canadian films. 
 
Two Canadian directors, Mathieu Denis (Corbo) and Andrea Dorfman (Heartbeat) will be on hand to promote their films. The Canadian films Mommy by Xavier Dolan, Le règne de la beauté (An Eye for Beauty) by Denys Arcand and Maps to the Stars by David Cronenberg will also be shown.
 
The coproduction treaty between Canada and India, which came into effect on July 1 this year, will become a reality with this mission, the purpose of which is to develop relationships with India’s film industry and to position Canada as a major player and key partner for co-production, a press release from the Canadian High Commission said.
 
The Canadian delegation will first attend the Canada-India Business Council Forum in Mumbai as part of a group of some 200 Canadian and Indian businesspeople. They will take part in a panel discussion entitled Activating the Canada-India Coproduction Treaty, and will have the opportunity to participate in business-to-business networking opportunities organized with Indian film producers. Canadian producers will then move on to Goa to attend the Film Bazaar, a major gathering for film industry development, distribution and production professionals.
 
According to the release, oarticipating Canadian producers include: Alfons Adetuyi, Inner City Films; Paula Devonshire, Devonshire Productions; Karen Franklin, Hill 100 Productions; Ralph Holt, Hill 100 Productions; Daniel Iron, Blue Ice Pictures; Mehernaz Lentin, Industry Pictures; David Miller, A71 Productions; Damon D’Oliveira, Conquering Lion Pictures; Rama Rau, Trinetra Productions; Sergio Navarretta, Platinum Image Film; Miranda de Pencier, Northwood Entertainment (all Ontario); Kelly Balon, Karma Film; Anand Ramayya, Karma Film (both Saskatchewan); and Vic Sarin, Sepia Films (British Columbia).
 
Travelling with the delegation will be Sheila de La Varende, Director of International Promotion at Telefilm Canada; Karen Thorne-Stone, President and CEO of OMDC; and Susanne Vaas, Vice-President, Business Affairs & Secretary Designate at CMPA.
 
Chris McDonald, President of Hot Docs, North America’s largest documentary festival, conference and market, will also take part in the Film Bazaar and IFFI in Goa. Hot Docs is preparing a “Made In India” program for its 2015 edition to celebrate the country’s contribution to contemporary documentary cinema, the release added.
 
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India’s forex reserves fall by $ 778.4 million to $ 315.132 billion

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After rising for four consecutive weeks, India’s foreign exchange reserves fell by $ 778.4 million to $ 315.132 billion in the week ended November 7, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said here today.
 
The forex reserves had gone up by a whopping $ 1.732 billion to $ 315.91 billion in the previous week.
 
In its weekly statistical supplement issued here today, the central bank said that foreign currency assets, which constitute a major chunk of the forex reserves, declined by $ 726 million to $ 289.64 billion during the week.
 
Foreign currency assets expressed in US dollar terms include the effect of appreciation or depreciation of non-US currencies such as the euro, pound and yen held in the reserves.
 
According to the bulletin, the country’s gold reserves remained unchanged at $ 19.738 billion, while its special drawing rights (SDRs) fell by $ 38.5 million to $ 4.232 billion during the week.
 
India's reserve position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) fell by $ 13.9 million to $ 1.522 billion during the period, the bulletin added.
 
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SBI reports 30.54% rise in net profit to Rs 3100 crore in Q2 of FY15

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State Bank of India (SBI), the country's largest lender by assets, today reported a 30.54 per cent increase in net profit to Rs 3100 crore in the second quarter (Q2) of the the current financial year (FY15) from Rs 2,375 crore in the same quarter of the previous year.
 
The bank said operating profit increased by 33.43% from Rs.6,312 crores in Q2FY14 to Rs. 8,422 crores in Q2FY15, while net interest income had gone up by 8.36% from Rs. 12,251 crores in Q2FY14 to Rs.13,275 crores in Q2FY15.
 
Fee income increased by 18.98% from Rs.2,615 crores in Q2FY14 to Rs. 3,111 crores in Q2FY15, while operating Income increased by 14.91% from Rs. 15,529 crores in Q2FY14 to Rs. 17,845 crores in Q2FY15.
 
A press release from the bank said its gross non-performing assets (NPA) ratio was down by 75 basis points (bps) to 4.89% in Q2FY15 as against 5.64% in Q2FY14. The ratio of net NPAs to net advances stood at 2.73% as compared to 2.91% a year ago.
 
Gross NPAs declined from Rs.64,206 crores in September 2013 to Rs.60,712 crores in September 14.(5.44% YOY decline). The provisioning coverage ratio as on 30 September 2014 stood at 63.18%.
 
Deposits of the bank increased from Rs.12,92,456 crores in September 2013 to Rs.14,73,785 crores in Sepember 2014.( 14.03%.YOY growth), while savings bank deposits went up from Rs.4,45,443 crores to Rs. 5,00,861 crores in the period.
 
Among its associates and subsidiaries, SBI Capital Markets Ltd registered a net profit of Rs 165.82 crores in the first half of FY15 up from Rs.126.15 crores in H1FY14 (31.45%YOY growth).
 
SBI Funds Management Pvt Ltd registered a net profit of Rs.82.60 crores in H1FY15 against Rs.75.26 crores in H1FY14 (9.75% YOY growth), while SBI Cards & Payments Services Pvt Ltd registered a net profit of Rs.194.20 crores in H1FY15 against Rs.143.38 crs in H1 FY 14 (35.44% YOY growth).
 
SBI Life Insurance Company Ltd posted a net profit of Rs.458.58 crores, in H1FY15 from Rs.431.70 crores  in H1FY14(6.23% YOY growth). 
 
The SBI Group's net profit increased from Rs 7371 crores in H1FY14 to Rs 8472 crores in H1FY15 (14.93% YOY growth), the release added.
 
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Reliance Infra terminates agreement for Mumbai Metro Line 2

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Reliance Infrastructure today said the Mumbai Metro Transport Private Limited (MMTPL), in which it has 48% stake, and the government of Maharashtra had agreed to erminate the concession agreement for the Mumbai Metro Line 2 Project (Charkop-Bandra-Mankhurd corridor).
 
A press release Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra) said here today that, due to non-fulfillment of carious critical obligations by the Maharashtra government and the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority (MMRDA), the project could not take off.
 
RInfra is part of the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group headed by industrialist Anil Ambani.
 
The state government had awarded the contract for the project, estimated to cost about Rs 12,000 crore to the consortium led by Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra) on August 3, 2009 through an international competitive bidding process.
 
The release said the concession agreement was executed between the state government and MMTPL on January 21, 2010.
 
"Even after four years, despite of the best efforts by the Government of Maharashtra, various project impediments could not be resolved.
 
"The parties (MMTPL and Government of Maharashtra) agreed to terminate the Concession Agreement at no cost or claim to either party with Government of Maharashtra to return the Bank Guarantee (of Rs 160 crore) to MMTPL," it said.
 
The release said that, with the termination of the concession agreement, all commitments and liabilities of RInfra towards the project, including the commitments towards funding the project have been annulled with immediate effect. 
 
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Gold jewellery demand in India up 60% to 183 tonnes in Q3 of 2014: WGC

Gold jewellery demand in India saw a 60% year-on-year (Y-o-Y) increase to 183 tonnes (t) in the third quarter (Q3) (July-September) of 2014, according to the latest Gold Demand Trends report from the World Gold Council (WGC).
 
A press release from WGC said this was the second highest Q3 on record for India.
 
"While the increase is partly reflective of the weakness in Q3 in India last year - when the government introduced import curbs and raised import duties - it also demonstrates the resilience of the country’s appetite for gold jewellery. Improved consumer confidence in both the domestic economy and the new government added to the positive sentiment, with strong levels of purchasing being seen in the build up to Diwali," it said.
 
Overall, the global demand for gold was down just 2% year on year to 929 tonnes, it said.
 
Overall jewellery demand softened slightly down 4% to 534t, when compared with an exceptional quarter in 2013. Taking a slightly longer term view, Q3 2014 jewellery demand was marginally stronger than the quarterly average of 527.6t. Year to date volumes continue to extend the broad uptrend from the low seen in 2009, the release said.
 
In China jewellery demand for Q3 2014 was down 39% year on year to 147t, but was broadly in line with both Q3 2012 and the 5-year quarterly average (of 148.2t and 154.9t, respectively). In the US and UK, jewellery demand was strong, buoyed by ongoing economic recoveries. US jewellery demand grew 4% year on year to 34t, the highest Q3 since 2009. UK jewellery demand had its fifth consecutive quarter of year on year growth.
 
Investment demand, a combination of bars and coins and exchange-traded funds (ETF), was up 6% to 204t. However, investment in bars and coins was down 21% to 246t. 
 
"This reflects an adjustment towards more normal levels of demand after a surge of unprecedented consumer demand took place last year. ETF outflows stood at 84t for the year to date compared to 699t in the same period last year. Third quarter demand for bars and coins was very close to the 10-year quarterly average of 240.6t. It’s worth noting that before the financial crisis of 2008, the European bar and coin market was virtually non-existent," the release said.
 
Mr Marcus Grubb, Managing Director of Investment Strategy at the World Gold Council said: “This quarter the market continued to find its feet after an exceptional 2013, with China catching its breath and buying in the build up to Diwali driving Indian jewellery purchases. The figures for India and China this quarter reinforce the need to understand the factors which underpinned an exceptional Q3 last year. In 2013, India was impacted by import curbs and increased import duties imposed by the previous government, whereas exceptional buying in China during the same period shaped buying patterns in 2014."
 
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"The long-term sources of demand - jewellery, investment, central banks and technology remain robust and diverse. People around the world buy gold for different reasons at different times, reinforcing the unique self balancing nature of the gold market. With recycling at a seven year low and mine supply looking increasingly likely to be constrained in the future the outlook for physical gold demand remains strong," he said.
 
According to the report, central banks bought 93t of gold in Q3 2014, the 15th consecutive quarter that banks were net purchasers of gold. Year to date, central banks have bought 335t of gold compared to 324t in the same period last year. This was driven by a number of factors including a continued diversification away from the US dollar and the backdrop of ongoing geopolitical tensions.
 
Technology demand was 98t, 5% lower than a year ago as the industry continued its shift towards alternative materials in technological applications.
 
Total supply fell by 7% in Q3 2014, continuing the broad themes surrounding gold supply during the first half of the year. Mine production stabilised (up 1% to 812t) but recycling slowed considerably, reaching its lowest year to date levels since 2007 at 807t, the report said.
 
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Eros International acquires worldwide rights of Rajinikanth’s Lingaa

A poster of 'Lingaa'
A poster of Lingaa
Film entertainment major Eros International Media Limited has said that it has acquired the worldwide rights of the Tamil film Lingaa, starring superstar Rajinikanth and directed by K.S. Ravikumar.
 
Produced by Rockline Entertainments Pvt Ltd, producer Rockline Venkatesh and also presented by Muni Rathna, Lingaa has Rajinikanth reprising a dual role along with Anushka Shetty and Sonakshi Sinha who makes her debut in Tamil cinema. 
 
The sound track has been scored by Oscar winning composer, A R Rahman with cinematography by R. Rathnavelu and production design by Sabu Cyril.
 
The Tamil and Telugu audio launch of Lingaa is slated for November 16 in Chennai along with the trailer launch of all three languages -- Tamil, Telugu and Hindi. The Hindi audio is scheduled to release soon. The music rights of the film, across languages – Tamil, Telugu and Hindi -- have been acquired by Eros’ music label, Eros Music.
 
Mr. Sunil Lulla, Managing Director, Eros International Media Ltd said, “We are delighted to present and release worldwide superstar Rajnikanth's much anticipated film Lingaa.  Audiences across the globe keenly await his first live action film after the blockbuster Robot. There is a huge buzz within the consumers and trade for the film and we are very excited."
 
Venkatesh added, “We are very pleased to associate with a leading studio like Eros to present a prestigious project like Lingaa starring superstar Rajinikanth. With their global positioning, we hope to present the film on a worldwide platform with maximum reach”.
 
Eros will release Lingaa worldwide in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi amongst other languages this December, a press release from the company added.
 
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Dhoni rested for first Test against Australia, Virat Kohli to lead

Virat Kohli
File photo of Virat Kohli.
Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been rested for the first Test against Australia beginning on December 4 and Virat Kohli will lead the side in his place, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced today.
 
"M. S. Dhoni has been rested for the first Test as a prophylactic measure to ensure optimum recovery. He will join the team from the second Test onwards, and will lead the team for the rest of the Test series," BCCI Secretary Sanjay Patel said after the All-India Senior Selection Committee met here earlier in the day.
 
The committe selected the Indian teams for the last matches of the Micromax Cup India vs Sri Lanka ODI series and the tour of Australia for a four-Test series.
 
The selectors have included Karnataka opener K L Rahul and Railways' leg-spinner Karn Sharma in the 19-member squad for the Australia tour.
 
They have also recalled Suresh Raina to the side after a gap of two years, while Madhya Pradesh wicketkeeper will be the back-up for Bengal 'keeper Wriddhiman Saha for the first Test.
 
The team includes five pace bowlers  - Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron. 
 
For the remaining ODIs against Sri Lanka, the selectors have rested opener Shikhar Dhawan and all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja.
 
Rohit Sharma, Robin Uthappa, Karn Sharma, Vinay Kumar and Kedhar Jadhav are among those who have been chosen for the two matches, scheduled for November 13 and November 16.
 
The following are the teams:
 
INDIAN TEAM FOR THE LAST TWO MATCHES OF THE MICROMAX CUP:
 
Virat Kohli (captain), Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Ambati Rayudu, Suresh Raina, Robin Uthappa, Axar Patel, Karn Sharma, R. Ashwin, Umesh Yadav, Dhawal Kulkarni, Stuart Binny, Vinay Kumar, Kedar Jadhav.
 
INDIAN TEAM FOR THE TEST SERIES IN AUSTRALIA
 
M.S.Dhoni ( Captain), Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, K.L. Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Wriddhiman Saha, Naman Ojha, R. Ashwin, Karn Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Mohd. Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron.
 
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ISL: Goa, Mumbai play out goalless draw in midfield battle

Photo courtesy:ISL
Photo courtesy:ISL
The match between FC Goa and Mumbai City FC in the Hero India Super League (ISL) at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium at Fatorda ended in a stalemate today, with neither team managing to get on the score-sheet.
 
It was Mumbai City’s first draw of the tournament, and takes them to the fourth spot and the top half of the league table with 10 points, whereas Goa stay rooted at the bottom of the table with five points.
 
The match began with Goa dominating proceedings, playing attacking football from the word go and going forward with some beautiful movement and build-up play. 
 
The heat and humidity seemed to have an impact on proceedings as well, as after the first 15 minutes, Goa went into their shell, with Mumbai taking control. The closest that the visitors got to scoring was when Subhash Singh put the ball in the back of the net, but the goal was correctly ruled out for offside. 
 
The momentum again switched towards the end of the half, with Goa looking the more threatening once more. Home defender Grégory Arnolin came close to scoring from a corner, but his header was not accurate enough. The first half also saw a water break taken to allow the players to replenish themselves in the unforgiving climate.
 
The story of the second half was similar, with the teams tiring out and the speed of play going down a notch. Arnolin once again came closest to scoring for the hosts from a corner, this time beating Mumbai City keeper Subrata Paul all ends up, but his shot hit the crossbar.
 
Goa had an incredible nine corners awarded in the game, but, as their story has been so far, did not manage to convert any of their chances. Jan Štohanzl was a stand-out performer for the visitors, and was justly named the player of the match.
 
Goa travel to the national capital to face the Delhi Dynamos FC in their eighth match on November 13. Mumbai City will play their second straight away game, going to Kochi to face the Kerala Blasters FC in their next encounter on November 12.
 
Match Awards
 
Hero of the Match: Jan Štohanzl (Mumbai City FC)
Swift Moment of the Match: Tolgay Özbey (FC Goa)
Amul Fittest Player of the Match: Narayan Das (FC Goa)
ISL Emerging Player of the Match: Bikramjit Singh (FC Goa)
 
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India to launch "blue revolution" to boost fish production

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Union Minister for Agriculture Radhamohan Singh has said that the government is all set to launch a "blue revolution" that envisages transformation of the fisheries sector with increased investment, better training and development of infrastructure.
 
Delivering the convocation address at the Central Institute of Fisheries Education here yesterday Friday evening, Mr. Singh said India was the second largest producer of fish, but it lagged China by a huge margin and also scored low on the  productivity scale.
 
He said fisheries output in the country is presently about 10 million tonnes, with inland fisheries accounting for 5.6 million tonnes and marine fisheries 3.4 million tonnes. 
 
“India has large natural resources, and water bodies such as reservoirs, lakes and ponds, in addition to an 8,118km-long coastline. So it is well positioned to have a blue revolution,” he said. 
 
Mr. Singh expressed concern over stagnation of production of marine fisheries. He said deep sea fishing would require large investments and the possibilities of public-private partnership would have to be explored.
 
He said the largest species of fish are found in India, and there is also tremendous scope for breeding of colourful ornamental fish. 
 
Mr Singh said that so far governments had focused mainly on agriculture and industry, but Prime Minister Narendra Modi has envisaged a grand plan for development of fisheries as a major employment generating economic activity. 
 
The 'blue revolution' will focus on construction of new fishing harbours, modernization of fishing boats, imparting training to fishermen, and above all promotion of fishing as a self-employment activity. 
 
A total of 128 degrees and 18 Ph.Ds were awarded at the 12th convocation of the institute at Versova here. As many as 29 students were given gold medals for meritorious achievements.
 
The Central Institute of Fisheries Education is a deemed university and a centre of excellence in the field of fisheries and allied subjects. It has 20 Fisheries Colleges spread across India. 
 
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Tendulkar's autobiography breaks records for pre-sale orders

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Cricketer Sachin Tendulkar's autobiography "Playing It My Way", released yesterday, has broken all records for an adult hardback on pre-order subscriptions across both fiction and non-fiction categories, the publishers said today.
 
According to them, on the day of release before sales began (at 11.30 am yesterday), the book had topped 150,000 copies in orders, already pulling ahead of both pre-order and lifetime sales of the top hardbacks Dan Brown's Inferno, Walter Issacson's Steve Jobs and JK Rowling's Casual Vacancy 
 
Thomas Abraham, Managing Director of Hachette India, which has published the book in the country, said, "It is no surprise that the master blaster's pen talks up records at the same pace as his bat. We're delighted that he has now notched up a thousand hundreds on debut, and we're sure that this innings has only just begun."
 
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