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BUSINESS AND ECONOMY - October 2021

Oct 2021

Dec 04, 2021

HDFC Bank Quickest to List among 100 Global Firms

  • HDFC Bank is the fastest among 100 global companies to have gone public. The gap between its incorporation and listing was less than a year, shows a study done by Tide, a UK-based financial platform. The second quickest was Chinese beverage firm Kweichow Moutai, which took two years to launch an IPO.
  • E-commerce giant Amazon also is among the fastest as it went public in just three years.
  • Meanwhile, the slowest was luxury goods firm Hermès, founded in 1837 and listed 162 years later. The other Indian firms in the top 100 global list are Reliance Industries (RIL) and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS).

Dec 03, 2021

Honda Motor Sets up Battery Sharing Service Subsidiary in India

  • Japanese auto major Honda Motor Co set up a battery sharing service subsidiary in India with a capital of Rs. 135 crore.
  • The new subsidiary, Honda Power Pack Energy India Pvt Ltd, would offer battery sharing service for small mobility, which will accelerate the penetration of electric vehicles (EV), and will also provide technical support to vehicle OEMs.
  • In addition to the battery sharing service, the new company will closely work with multiple vehicle OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers), who wish to integrate Honda's battery into their vehicles, by providing necessary technical information for interface.

PhonePe Launches Health Insurance Plan for Young First-time Buyers

  • Walmart-owned digital payments firm PhonePe, announced the launch of its latest health insurance plan, Health@999 catering to young first-time health buyers. As per PhonePe, the latest offering is the first such in the Indian digital payments space and provides comprehensive health coverage at an affordable price. The highlight of the product is the simple 3-step process that only requires the user to provide details like name, age, gender, and email ID to buy the policy, eliminating the cumbersome processes new and young buyers are deterred by.
  • Health @999, at its low price point, offers coverage for hospitalization expenses including in-patient and ICU hospitalisation, daycare procedures, ambulance charges, and Ayush treatment among others. The cashless hospital network for the plan stretches across 7600 hospitals in the country. Health @999 can be availed via PhonePe instantly and comes with the lifetime renewability feature.

OYO Appoints Former SBI Chairman Rajnish Kumar Strategic Group Advisor

  • Oravel Stays Limited (OYO) appointed State Bank of India's (SBI's) former Chairman Rajnish Kumar strategic group advisor, in an attempt to strengthen its leadership ahead of its stock market debut.
  • Kumar, who has spent over 40 years in the financial sector, will play a key role in advising OYO's management on short-term and long-term strategy, regulatory and stakeholder engagement, and enhancing the brand of the company globally.
  • Kumar, who had joined SBI as a probationary officer in 1980 retired as chairman in October 2020 after 40 years at the bank. He is credited with overseeing the mega-merger of seven banks with India's largest lender.

Federal Bank Launches Rich Saving Scheme for Women

  • Private sector lender Federal Bank launched a feature-rich savings bank product for women.
  • The savings scheme is called Mahila Mitra Plus and provides a curated set of features, designed to make financial planning and investments easy for women.
  • The special features include exclusive preferential interest rates on housing loans, processing fee waiver for home loans, complimentary and customised insurance cover.

Dhanlaxmi Bank Part-Time Chairman G. Subramonia Iyer Submits His Resignation

  • Dhanlaxmi Bank's part-time Chairman G. Subramonia Iyer resigned, on personal grounds.
  • Dhanlaxmi Bank Ltd is an Indian private sector bank headquartered in Thrissur, Kerala.
  • Dhanlaxmi Bank Ltd was incorporated on 14 November 1927 as Dhanalakshmi Bank at Thrissur with a capital of Rs. 11,000 and seven employees. It became a Scheduled Commercial Bank in the year 1977.

Dec 02, 2021

SBI Signs MoU with Usha International for Empowering Women

  • State Bank of India (SBI) signed an agreement with Usha International Limited (UIL) for empowering women entrepreneurs by providing financial assistance. The financial assistance will be provided under the Joint Liability Group model. This is the first of its kind collaboration between UIL and SBI in coming forward together for the upliftment of the social and economic status of women entrepreneurs in rural areas of the country by making them self-reliant and providing equal opportunity for achieving financial growth and inclusion.
  • As per the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between SBI and UIL, branches of the bank in Uttarakhand, Delhi, Western UP, and NCR Haryana will be financing women entrepreneurs to Usha Silai School to purchase sewing machines for enhancement and up-gradation of technical sewing skills or to purchase thread of clothes, etc.

BPCL Appoints Independent Directors

  • Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) appointed Pradeep Vishambhar Agrawal, Ghanshyam Sher, Aiswarya Biswal, Bhagwati Prasad Saraswat and Gopal Krishna Agarwal as Independent Directors on the Board for three years.
  • Pradeep Vishambhar Agrawal is a Chartered Accountant and a Company Secretary. Ghanshyam Sher is an Advocate who specialises in Legal advice and Social Service. Aiswarya Biswal is a dentist who has worked on the prevention of Oral cancer and preventable dental diseases. Bhagwati Prasad Saraswat holds a doctorate in Financial Evolution of Drugs and Pharmaceutical Companies in India. Gopal Krishna Agarwal is a Chartered Accountant and has co-authored a book 'Water an Element of Life: Price Sensitivity and Consumption by the Marginalised" published by Bloomsbury India.

Bajaj Auto Pips Hero MotoCorp to Become No 1 Motorcycle Maker in November

  • A structural slowdown facing the world's largest two-wheeler market has changed the equations in the segment, with Bajaj Auto emerging as the largest motorcycle maker in November, zipping past market leader Hero MotoCorp.
  • The Pune-based firm sold a total of 337,962 units in November in the domestic and exports market against the 329,185 units sold by Hero MotoCorp.

IFFCO Ranks First among top 300 Cooperatives in the World

  • The Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO) was ranked 'number one Cooperative' among the top 300 cooperatives in the world, withholding its position from last year.
  • The ranking is based on the ratio of turnover over the gross domestic product (GDP) per capita. It signifies that IFFCO is contributing significantly to the GDP and economic growth of the nation.

Tata Power Bags Solar Project from Solar Energy Corp

  • Tata Power Company said that its wholly owned subsidiary Tata Power Solar Systems received Letter of Award (LoA) from Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).
  • The contract involves building 100 MW EPC solar project along with 120 MWh utility scale battery energy storage system (BESS). The total contract value of the project is approximately Rs. 945 crore. The project would be executed within 18 months.

Dec 01, 2021

Gujarat Displaces Maharashtra to Become Largest Manufacturing Hub in Country

  • Gujarat emerged as the biggest manufacturing hub in India with the state's Gross Value Addition (GVA) in manufacturing growing at 15.9 per cent annually on average between FY'12 and FY'20 to touch Rs. 5.11 lakh crore, displacing Maharashtra, according to data released by the RBI. Maharashtra's annual growth rate during the period was 7.5 per cent, taking the state's total manufacturing GVA to Rs. 4.34 lakh crore in FY'20. Maharashtra continues to lead as the nation's biggest services hub.

HSBC Launches India's 1st Credit Card Made from Recycled PVC Plastic

  • HSBC India launched India's 1st credit card made from recycled PVC (Polyvinyl chloride) plastic. The cards were introduced in partnership with global cards manufacturer IDEMIA to gradually eliminate single-use PVC plastic. The cards are made from 85 per cent recycled plastic and each card will save 3.18 gm of plastic waste in addition to helping lower overall carbon emission.
  • The card was launched as a part of a new program launched by HSBC Group to introduce sustainable cards across all its global locations to support its global commitments to sustainability and a net-zero in its operations by 2030.

Seven Firms, including JSW Steel, Submit Bids for Coal Blocks

  • JSW Steel and Adhunik Power & Natural Resources are among seven companies that have submitted bids for four coal blocks put up for sale under "second attempt" of auction process for 11 mines for commercial mining.
  • These coal mines were also offered in the first attempt this year and had fetched single bids.
  • The seven firms are Auro Coal Pvt Ltd, JSW Steel, MP Natural Resources Pvt Ltd, Adhunik Power & Natural Resources, Assam Mineral Development Corp Ltd, Virtuous Mining Ltd and Twenty First Century Mining Pvt Ltd.

Walmart Announces MoU with MP Government to Train and Support MSMEs

  • Walmart and its subsidiary Flipkart announced they will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Madhya Pradesh government to create an ecosystem of capacity building for MSMEs in the state.
  • Under the partnership with Department of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) of the MP government, Walmart and Flipkart will help MSMEs digitize their businesses and enable them to sell products across India through online retail.
  • The initiative comes under Walmart Vriddhi Supplier Development Programme.
  • Launched in 2019, Walmart Vriddhi aims to train 50,000 Indian MSMEs with the business skills necessary to succeed as suppliers to Walmart, sellers on Flipkart, and other domestic and global marketplace platforms.

RBI Appoints Three-member Advisory Committee to Assist RCap's Administrator

  • After superseding the board of Reliance Capital (RCap), the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) appointed an advisory committee tasked with assisting the administrator appointed to the company in discharging his duties.
  • The three-member advisory committee includes State Bank of India's ex–deputy managing director (DMD) Sanjeev Nautiyal, Axis Bank's ex-DMD Srinivasan Varadarajan, and Tata Capital's ex-MD and chief executive officer Praveen P. Kadle.

Nov 30, 2021

RBI Imposes Penalty of Rs. 1 crore on Union Bank of India

  • The Reserve Bank of India imposed a monetary penalty of Rs. 1 crore on state-owned Union Bank of India for deficiencies in regulatory compliance. The penalty was imposed by an order dated November 25 for non-compliance with the certain provisions of directions issued by the RBI contained in Reserve Bank of India (Fraud - Classification and Reporting by commercial banks and select FIs) Directions 2016 and Guidelines on Sale of Stressed Assets by Banks.

Indian-origin Executive Parag Agrawal New Twitter CEO

  • Indian-origin technology executive, Parag Agrawal was appointed as the new CEO of Twitter after the social media giant's co-founder Jack Dorsey stepped down. He is now the youngest CEO in the S&P 500 elbowing Meta Platform Inc.
  • Parag joined Twitter 10 years ago when there were fewer than 1,000 employees. He has been behind every critical decision that helped turn this company around. He's curious, probing, rational, creative, demanding, self-aware and humble.

Hindujas Top Rich British Asians' List

  • The combined wealth of British Asians stood at just a shade below £100 billion this year, an impressive rise of more 20 per cent compared to last year, as Asian entrepreneurs in the UK successfully managed to ward off unprecedented challenges posed by the pandemic and the Brexit, according to the annual Asian Rich List.
  • Topping the list for the seventh consecutive year is the Hinduja family, whose wealth swelled by £2.5bn, over the year, according to a press release from the Asian Media Group, which hosts the awards and publishes the Asian Rich List.

LIC Gets RBI's Nod to Increase Stake in Kotak Mahindra Bank

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has granted approval to state-owned insurance behemoth Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India to raise its stake in private lender Kotak Mahindra Bank up to 9.99 per cent.
  • LIC is one of the biggest institutional investors in India's stock market and has a stake in a number of private and public sector banks. LIC has a stake in as many as 24 scheduled commercial banks, shows the data from Capitaline. It holds 49.24 per cent stake in IDBI Bank.

Kantar's BrandZ India Report 2021

  • According to Kantar's BrandZ India 2021 report, Amazon, Tata Tea and Asian Paints emerged as the most purposeful brands in India across technology, FMCG, and non-FMCG categories respectively. In technology ranking Amazonleads the index followed by Zomato, YouTube, and Google, and Swiggy jointly in 4th place.
  • While Asian Paints topped the non-FMCG rankings, Samsung and Jio ranked jointly in the 2nd position, followed by MRF. The FMCG category rankings saw Tata Tea topping the chart, Surf Excel in 2nd position.

Fedo Launches "Health Savings Account" in Partnership with Neo Bank Open

  • AI driven Health- tech company Fedo announced 'Health Savings Account', called Fedo HSA, in collaboration with neo bank Open.
  • Fedo HSA woould offer a combined account that helps customers meet their required spends through a combination of smart savings, insurance, line of credit all bundled in a powerful savings account that comes with a health Credit/ Debit cards with health benefit features and rewards.

RBI Raises Higher Cap on Promoter Stake in Private Banks at 26%

  • An internal working group of the Reserve Bank on the ownership and corporate structure of private sector banks has favoured allowing promoters to maintain any percentage of holding in the first five years-- more than the present minimum of 40 per cent now favoured -- and then capping it at 26 per cent after 15 years of operations.
  • According to the RBI's current norms, a promoter of a private bank needs to pare holdings to 20 per cent within 10 years, and to 15 per cent within 15 years.
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