OPINION, P6 COMPANIES, P4 ANUBHUTI SAHAY A fiscal deficit target of 6% in FY23 will strike the right balance INTERNATIONAL, P8 EDITORIAL COVID VARIANT BYOB BACKLASH Govt must give Vodafone Idea management a free hand, convert firm's deferred liability into equity Bharat Biotech says Covaxin booster shot neutralises Omicron UK PM Johnson offers rare apology for garden party during lockdown LUCKNOW, THURSDAY, JANUARY 13, 2022 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM READ TO LEAD VOL XIVNO. 235, 18 PAGES, `8.00 P U B L I S H E D F R O M : A H M E D A B A D , B E N G A L U R U , C H A N D I G A R H , C H E N N A I , H Y D E R A B A D , K O C H I , K O L K ATA , L U C K N O W, M U M B A I , N E W D E L H I , P U N E SENSEX: 61,150.04 ▲ 533.15 NIFTY: 18,212.35 ▲ 156.60 NIKKEI 225: 28,765.66 ▲ 543.18 HANG SENG: 24,402.17 ▲ 663.11 `/$: 73.92 ▼ 0.01 `/€: 84.02 ▼ 0.26 BRENT: $84.25 ▲ $0.53 GOLD: `47,753 ▲ `253 AFTER NEARLYA month, workers have finally returned to Apple contract manufacturer Foxconn’s protest-hit Chennai factory, paving the way for the resumption of operations, reports Sajan C Kumar in Chennai. In a gradual resumption of operations, around 100 workers reported for work out of its entire workforce of around 15,000. CD issuances rise sharply in Oct-Dec Q3FY22 (` cr) Revenue 46,867 48,885 1.5 9,769 2 Net profit 9,624 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES (TCS) on Wednesday reported a consolidated net profit of `9,769 crore for the October-December quarter, up 1.5% sequentially,missing the Street’s expectations of `9,988 crore.It reported a margin contraction of 60 basis points at 25%against25.60%inthepreceding quarter, impacted by increased focus on hiring and retention of talent. TCSannouncedasharebuybackof`18,000croreat`4,500 pershare,apremiumof16.67% overthe lasttraded price. Operating income 12,237 FE BUREAU Mumbai, January 12 « « Foxconn factory at TN resumes operations Q2FY22 Higher salaries could % change have a short-term impact on margins but investing in talent 4.3 is the right thing to do...In the medium- to Operating long-term, it will be a net positive for us, margins both on (%) the revenue -60 bps and margins side. « SLAMMING SUPERTECH FOR not refunding money to its homebuyers for the flats which were ordered to be demolished last year in August, the Supreme Court on Wednesday warned its directors to face a jail term for “playing truant” with the court, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. REPORT CARD Announces `18,000-crore share buyback « Supertech execs warned of jail term by SC TCS misses estimates, profit rises 1.5% to `9,769 crore « THE SUPREME COURT on Wednesday appointed a five-member panel, headed by its former judge Indu Malhotra, to probe into the security lapse during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Punjab last week, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. The panel will investigate the causes of the security breach, ascertain the persons responsible for it and recommend measures for preventing such lapses. Q3 EARNINGS 12,000 IN THE NEWS SC forms panel to look into PM security breach 25.6 — RAJESH GOPINATHAN MD & CEO, TCS 25 CEO and MD Rajesh Gopinathan said the continued growth momentum was a validation of the collaborative, inside-out approach to customers’ business transformationneeds.“Whilemappingout their innovation and growth journeys, we are also helping them execute new-age operating model transformations to supportthosejourneys,”hesaid. Continued on Page 2 Wipro misses estimates, gives Q4 revenue guidance of 2-4% WIPRO ON WEDNESDAY posted a net profit of `2,969 crore during Q3, which was up 1.3% quarter-on-quarter,missing the Street estimates, reports fe Bureau in Mumbai. Revenues rose 3.28% to Rs 20,313.6 crore. The company’s operating margin declined 32.9 basis points sequentially to 16.95%.Onaconstantcurrencybasis,ITser- vices company saw a sequential growth of 3.0% at $2.64 billion. The company announced a dividend of `1 per share. OntheoutlookforthefourthquarterendingMarch31,Wiproexpectsrevenuefromits IT services business to be in the range of $2,692-2,745million,agrowthof2-4%ona sequential basis. ■ Page 4 Crude facts Infosys ups FY22 revenue guidance, beats estimates for Dec quarter ● DOUBLE WHAMMY CPI inflation hits 6-month peak, IIP growth at 9-month low FE BUREAU New Delhi, January 12 INFOSYSONWEDNESDAYnot onlybeatanalysts’estimatesfor theDecemberquarterearnings, it also increased the FY22 revenue guidance to 19.5-20% from the earlier16.5%-17.5%. The IT major retained the margin guidance of 22-24%. Revenues, in constant currency terms, clocked a sequential growth of 7% in Q3FY22, buttheoperatingmarginstayed flat,falling 0.1% to 23.5%.The IT major’s net profit rose 7.2% to`5,809croreoverthepreceding quarter. The deal pipeline remainedrobustin Q3with the company reporting a total contractvalue of $2.53 billion. CEO and MD Salil Parekh expects healthy technology spends to continue with large enterprises progressing on their digital transformations. RETAIL INFLATION QUICKENED to a six-month high of 5.59%inDecemberfromayear before and industrial productiongrowthnosedivedtoaninemonth low of 1.4% in November — a double whammy for policy-makers as they brace for the nextyear’s Budget. Dearerfoodproducts,which dominate the Consumer Price Index, offset a slight moderation in fuel inflation caused by a recent tax cut,and core inflationheldsteadyat5.85%.Food inflation — driven by elevated prices of the mostly-imported edible oils, sugar and certain protein-based items — jumped to 4.05% in December from 1.87% in the previous month. Still, given that inflation remained within the Reserve Bank of India’s target band (26%) for the sixth straight month, the monetary policy committee (MPC) will likely continuewithitsgrowthpushin itsnextmeetinginFebruaryand waitabitlongerforfurtherconfirmation of the underlying price pressure in the economy. Detailed report on Page 2 Continued on Page 2 FE BUREAU Bengaluru, January 12 MEGA IPO Govt seeks `15L-cr valuation for LIC At this value, a 5% stake sale will fetch about `75,000 crore ■ Embeddedvalue likely to be over `4 lakh crore, marketvalue could be four times this VRISHTI BENIWAL & SUVASHREE GHOSH January 12, 2022 THE GOVERNMENT IS pushingforavaluationofabout`15 lakh crore ($203 billion) for a state-owned insurer that’s soon expected to file for the nation’s biggest initial public offering, people familiar with the matter said, even as arrangersawaitedafinalreport on the firm’s estimated worth. The so-called embedded valueofLICislikelytobeover`4 lakh crore,and its market value could be about four times that amount,the people said,asking not to be identified as the discussions are private. Once the final report is in, the valuation thegovernmentisseekingcould ■ Arrangers await final report on estimated worth, post that valuation could change ■ Embedded value to be part ofIPO prospectus to be filed inweek startingJan 31 ■ LIC could join the league of RILandTCS, which have market value of `17 lakh cr and `14.3 lakh cr, respectively change.Embedded value,a key metric for insurers, combines thecurrentvalueoffutureprofitswith the netvalue of assets. Continued on Page 2 Refyne raises $82 m from Tiger Global, others REFYNE, AN EARNED wage access solution provider, on Wednesday said it has raised $82 million (about `606.6 crore) in funding led byTiger Global,reports PTI.The series B round also saw significant contribution coming in from existing international investors like QED Investors, partners of DSTGlobal,JigsawVC, among others, and new investorDigital Horizon.Within just 10 months of being operational,it has raised a totalof$106million. ■ Page 10 FE BUREAU Oil prices shrug off Omicron to hit 2-month high Oil prices hit two-month highs on Wednesday on tight supply and easing concerns about the potential hit to demand from the Omicron coronavirus variant. Brent crude futures were up 47 cents, or 0.6%, at $84.19 a barrel. Analysts predict that prices that rallied 50% in 2021 will power further ahead this year to above $100. Brent ($/bbl) FUNDRAISING THROUGH CERTIFICATES of deposit (CD) rose more than 90% quarter-on-quarter in October-December, reports Manish M Suvarna in Mumbai. Banks raised funds to meet their funding requirements owing to growth in credit offtake and rollover of debt instruments that were set to mature in the third quarter of this fiscal. 90 85 84.78 `/$ 84.22 Intra-day, Jan 12 Inverted scale 73.70 73.77 80 75 73.91 70 73.98 65 73.79 73.84 74.05 60 Nov 9, 2021 Jan 12, 2022 74.12 73.92 Previous close: 73.91 Open Close EQUITY CONVERSION Special Feature ‘We see learning as a core driver for printing’ Transition to work from home and home schooling has amped the demand for home print solutions. Today, in India, almost every second printer sold is an HP printer, says Sunish Raghavan ■ eFE, P7 QuickPicks Mercedes-Benz to start making electric vehicles in India EVEN THOUGH BMW has claimed victory over Mercedes-Benz in global luxury car sales in CY21, as far as the Indian market is concerned, MercedesBenz India sold an almost equal number of cars as competitors Audi India and BMW Group India put together, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. Martin Schwenk, MD & CEO, told FE: “And 2022 will be another milestone year as we aim to lead the luxury EV segment by expanding our EV portfolio with the debut of the EQS, which will be locally produced.” Local manufacturing, he added, “is a step in the right direction for us towards mainstreaming luxury EVs”. PAGE 4 Paytm’s payments revenue rising 50-60% y-o-y: Sharma DIGITAL FINANCIAL services firm Paytm's revenue from payments, including merchant transfers, is expected to be at around $140 million (about `1,034 crore) in the current quarter with a growth of 50-60% on a year-on-year basis, founder and CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma said on Wednesday, reports PTI. At the IAMAI India Digital Summit, Sharma said the company is building credit as the next line of business and it has crossed the number of loans issued by one of the leading non-banking financial companies. PAGE 9 Govt does not want to run VIL: Takkar FE BUREAU New Delhi, January 12 VODAFONE IDEA MANAGINGdirectorandCEORavinder Takkar said on Wednesday the government had indicated to the telecom company,itwould neitherparticipateinthemanagement nor nominate board members. Takkar added the existing promoters are committed to the company. The articles of association, Takkarsaid,havebeenamended to give voting rights to shareholders with a stake of over 13%.Thiswouldenablethepromoters to participate in decision-making even if their stake fell to under21%,as in the case of Aditya Birla Group whose stakewill go down to 17.8%. Speaking to reporters, Takkar said,“In all of our interactions with the government, leading up to the package itself and even after the announcementofthepackage,ithasbeen very clearly stated by the gov- Ravinder takker Vodafone Idea Intra-day on BSE (`), Jan 12 13.5 12.80 13.0 12.5 12.0 11.5 12.10 Open Previous close: 11.80 Close ernment that they do not want torunthecompany,theydonot have the desire to take over operations of the company… they want us to run the company and that’s what we intent to do going forward.” Continued on Page 2 ‘Undervaluation’: CEL sale put on hold THEGOVERNMENTHASput thesaleofCentralElectronics toaDelhi-basedfirm onhold following allegations of undervaluation by the employees’association,reports fe Bureau in New Delhi.“The employees’ association has raised some allegations... These are being examined by IMG. Therefore, the Letter of Intent is put on hold,” DipamsecretaryTuhinKanta Pandeytold FE. ■ Page 2 Lucknow
The Financial Express (FE) is a business paper that’s closest to the people who are in the business of business. From business policies to market trends to new developments, The Financial Express comes packed with incisive news on every relevant issue.