BACK PAGE, P14 COMPANIES, P4 BACK PAGE, P14 GREEN PROTESTS DRAFT TELECOM BILL IN THE NEWS ‘Urban Naxals’ and some global bodies blocking infra: Modi Bringing OTT platforms under licensing will kill innovation: Tech players ABG Shipyard ex-promoter Rishi Agarwal achieved success by hook or crook MUMBAI, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2022 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM READ TO LEAD VOL LXII NO. 225, 14 PAGES, `10.00 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: 58,098.92 ▼ 1,020.80 NIFTY: 17,327.35 ▼ 302.45 NIKKEI 225: 27,153.83 ▼ 159.30 HANG SENG: 17,933.27 ▼ 214.68 `/$: 80.99 ▼ 0.13 `/€: 79.07 ▼ 0.65 BRENT: $86.96 ▼ 3.47 GOLD: `49,603 ▼ `142 IN THE NEWS Mobiles, appliances, top hits at Flipkart's annual festive sale EARLY TRENDS FROM the ninth edition of Flipkart’s ‘Big Billion Days’ sale found overall consumer sentiment was very positive on Friday. Categories such as mobiles, appliances, fashion and furniture saw most interest, reports fe Bureau in Mumbai. ■ PAGE 4 PFRDA rejects states' demand for custody of NPS corpus EVEN THOUGH SOME Opposition-ruled states have announced plans to restore the old pension scheme ahead of assembly elections, PFRDA has rejected their demand for custody of the accumulated corpus under National Pension System, reports Prasanta Sahu in New Delhi. ■ PAGE 3 Zomato to check cloud kitchens with over 10 brands ZOMATO ON FRIDAY said it would conduct spot checks on cloud kitchens that operate more than 10 brands from a single location. Such operators who provide great experience will however be included in the company's whitelist, it said on Friday, reports Tushar Goenka in Bengaluru. ■ PAGE 5 Wipro announces salary hikes for 96% of employees WIPRO WILL ROLL out its annual salary increments or merit salary increases hikes for FY22, which is expected to cover about 96% of employees. This would translate to 248,231 employees out of Wipro’s total headcount of 258,574, reports fe Bureau in Bengaluru. ■ PAGE 4 SpiceJet gets notice from NCLT on insolvency plea TROUBLED BUDGET CARRIER SpiceJet has received a notice from the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on an insolvency plea, directing the airline to respond in two weeks. The plea was filed by one of the creditors of the airline, Acres Buildwell, to whom SpiceJet owes `3.25 crore, reports fe Bureau in Mumbai. ■ PAGE 5 Retail prices of rice to remain under control: Govt AMID FEARS OF a 6% y-o-y decline in kharif rice production jacking up prices, the government on Friday said prices in the domestic market will remain under control, thanks to a ban on broken rice exports and “sufficient stocks”. It said it has ensured domestic food security, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. FE SPECIAL N Line: A lot of sound, little fury The Hyundai Venue N Line is heavy on exhaust sound, but the 1.0-litre turbocharged engine seems underpowered. ■ Motobahn, P8 Jan 17, 2022 Six arms to merge with Tata Steel SCALING 60,000 AND BACK IN 9 MONTHS Apr 4, 2022 61,308 Aug 18, 2022 60,611 60,298 FE BUREAU New Delhi, September 23 Dec 31, 2021 58,253.82 Sept 23, 2022 Mar 7, 2022 52,842 Jun 16, 2022 58,098.92 51,495 SENSEX 154 PTS BELOW DEC 31 CLOSING, NIFTY 26.65 PTS Markets give up 2022 gains Global stocks drop to 2-year low, Dow drops more than 600 points Intra-day, Sept 23 40,700 40,400 FE BUREAU Mumbai, September 23 THE STOCK MARKET indices slid for a third straight day on weak global cues, erasing all the gains made this year. As the Sensex slid 1.7%, or 1,021 points to 58,099, it is now 154 points below the December31closingof58,253.The Nifty 50 settled at 17,327, down 1.7%.At this level,it is 26.65 points below the 2021-end closing. Friday's drop led to an erosion of nearly `5 trillion in market cap of BSE firms. Foreign portfolio investors sold shares worth `2,900 crore on Friday, provisional figures show. In the year to date, the FRIDAY FALL IN THE RED Previous close: 40,630.6 40,517.15 39,546.25 40,100 39,800 39,500 39,200 Bank Nifty Open Close investors have net sold $20.3 billion. Volumes on NSEwere the lowest since September 12 on Friday. All sectoral indices ended in the red, with Realty, Power, Banks, Capital Goods and Telecom being the laggards. The advance decline ratio ended stood at 0.24:1. Among the 30-share Sensex `5 Close to TRILLION wiped out in market capitalisation of BSE firms pack, Power Grid slumped 7.93%. The other major laggards were Mahindra & Mahindra, State Bank ofIndia,BajajFinserv,BajajFinance, NTPC, HDFC and IndusInd Bank. SunPharma,TataSteelandITCwere the only gainers. Global stocks hit two-year lows on Friday as investors digested the prospect of a far more aggressive Rupee breaches 81 intra-day FE BUREAU Mumbai, September 23 THE RUPEE PLUNGED to a fresh record low on Friday, hitting 81.2250 to the dollar in intra-day trades before closing at 80.99 per dollar, against Thursday’s close of 80.86. Currency market dealers said the Reserve Bank of India had intervened in the market, though this could not be independently confirmed. The rupee has now closed lowerin seven out of eight sessions. Meanwhile, the yield on the benchmarkclosedat7.393%,alevel lastseenonJuly22,up8basispoints overThursday’s close of 7.312%. Piyush Wadhwa, head – financial markets & treasury, IDFC First Bank, said the rupee was likely to trade with a depreciating bias. “There are several factors that would determine the course of the currency, including the strength of RUPEE AT RECORD LOW, BOND YIELDS UP 8 BPS `/$ Intra-day, Sept 23 Inverted scale 80.70 80.80 81.08 80.98 80.90 Intra-day, Sept 23 7.40 7.39 7.39 7.38 81.00 7.37 81.10 7.36 81.20 81.30 10-year bond yield (%) 7.35 Open Close the dollar and the extent of intervention by the central bank. We must remember we are running a pretty large trade deficit,”he said. The sentiment in the currency market has worsened after the US Fed hiked benchmark rates by 75 bpsonWednesdayanditscommentary sounded more hawkish than anticipated. 7.34 7.359 Open Close The escalation of geopolitical tensions added to the gloom. Ritesh Bhusari,DGM- Treasury, South Indian Bank, said it was possibletherupeecouldgotolowerlevels if policy rates do not increase here as per the expectations. Continued on Page 10 More reports on Page 2, 5 ■ LIC hits 52-week low, along with Indian Oil, Biocon & Gland Pharma in BSE200 ■ FPIs sold shares worth `2,900 crore (provisional). YTD, the investors have net sold $20.3 billion rise in US interest rates. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down more than 20% from its January 4 record closing high on Friday, putting it on track to confirm a bear market at the close.At 12:20 pm ET, the index was down 619.10 points, or 2.06%,at 29,457.58. Continued on Page 10 Brent falls $4 to below $87 OILPRICES PLUNGED about5%to aneight-monthlowonFridayasthe US dollar hit its strongest level in more than two decades. Brent futures were down $4.35, or 4.8%, to $86.11 a barrel by 1409 GMT, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude fell $4.58, or 5.5%, to $78.91,reports Reuters. ■ PAGE 7 Forex reserves fall to 2-yr low INDIA’S FOREX RESERVES fell by $5.22 billion to $545.65 billion as of September 12,data from the RBI showed.While part of the decrease could be due to valuation changes, currency experts said much of it wouldbeduetotheRBIintervening in the currency market, reports fe Bureau in Mumbai. ■ PAGE 7 Moonlighting gets a strong backer in minister FE BUREAU New Delhi, September 23 AT A TIME when Wipro has sacked 300 employees for moonlighting and most ITfirms havevoiced their opposition tosuchpracticesbystaff members, minister of state for IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar has supported the practice, saying companies should not put a lid on employ- MoS for ITRajeev Chandrashekhar said companies can’t put a lid on employees’ dreams ees' dreams. However, the minister said moonlighting should not be < in violation of any contractual obligations. Chandrasekhar said the days when employees signed upwith big tech majors and spent theirlives on the job are long gone. “Today’s youngsters have everysense of confidence and purpose aboutwanting to monetise,create morevalues out of his or her own skills. So, the efforts of companies that want to pin their employees down and say that you should not work on your own startup or consulting are doomed to fail exercise,” he said while addressing the 9th Annual Forum 2022 of the Public Affairs Forum of India,on Friday. Continued on Page 10 TO BRING ABOUT greater synergies, higher efficiency and reduce costs, Tata Steel on Friday said its board has approved the merger of six of its subsidiaries into itself.The subsidiaries are Tata Steel Long Products,The Tinplate Company of India, Tata Metaliks, TRF, Indian Steel & Wire Products, Tata Steel Mining,and S&TMining Company. The amalgamation will be through a share swap,Tata Steel said. Share swap ratios under the merger scheme would be 17:10 for TRF(17sharesofTataSteelforevery 10 shares of TRF), 67:10 for TSPL (67 shares of Tata Steel for every 10 shares of TSPL), 33:10 for Tinplate (33 shares of Tata Steel for every 10 shares of Tinplate), 79:10 for Tata Metaliks (79 shares ofTata Steel for every 10 shares of Tata Metaliks). Tata Steel is a majority holder in all these subsidiaries, and the proposed amalgamation will enhance management efficiency, drive sharperstrategicfocusandimprove agility across businesses based on the strong parental support from Tata Steel leadership, the company said in a stock exchange filing. The resources of the merged entity have been pooled to unlock FORGINGTOGETHER ■ Tata Steel Long Products, TheTinplate Company of India,Tata Metaliks,TRF, Indian Steel &Wire Products, Tata Steel Mining, S&TMining Company to be merged ■ Amalgamation to be through share swap ■ Resources of the merged entity pooled to create shareholder value the opportunity for creating shareholders’value,the company added. The company also said that in line with Tata Steel’s long-term strategy,theconsolidationofdownstream operations will enable growthinvalue-added segmentsby leveraging Tata Steel’s nationwide marketing and sales network. Continued on Page 2 ● KOUSHIK CHATTERJEE, ED & CFO, TATA STEEL ‘Amalgamation will lead to synergies of around `1,500 cr’ Tata Steel on Friday announced the amalgamation of six of its subsidiaries with it. Koushik Chatterjee, ED &CFO, Tata Steel,told FE,the transaction would be value accretive and result in synergies of around `1,500 crore.Excerpts. have more flexibility to grow some of them faster. Since they are all subsidiaries, consolidated debt will not change. Q&A What is the rationale for the amalgamation? The objective is to consolidate the subsidiary businesses within Tata Steel to drive simplification of management and also have a sharperfocus on the business.After the successful merger and integration of Tata Steel BSL, which was a much larger and more complex transaction, this was the next logical move. We propose to drive synergies across areas,be it in procurement or in financing,and the value leakages will be plugged. How much will the synergies yield? The net present value of allsynergieswillbe over`1,000 crore, which is a material value unlocking potential. Continued on Page 2 Will the transaction bevalue accretive ? Yes,itwill bevalue accretive to Tata Steel standalone and all the businesses are part of Tata Steel core strategy, whether it is long products or packaging. Further, these businesses are part of Tata Steel’s enterprise strategy and we 7 NEW BIGGER ENGINE BIKES SOON Royal Enfield wants brand loyalists to switch to higher gear SWARAJ BAGGONKAR Mumbai, September 23 HUNTFOR NEWCUSTOMERS ROYAL ENFIELD WILL add over half-a-dozen motorcycles to its bigger engine bouquet over the next couple of years, targeting a large pool of brand loyalistswho itwants to upgrade to larger capacity bikes. Estimates by the brand suggest there are around six million Royal Enfield owners in India. The Eicher Motors-owned company currently has two models on the twin-cylindervehicle platform, with seven more models in the pipeline in the next fewyears.Powered by a 650cc engine, the Royal Enfield Continental GT and Interceptor,alsocalledthe‘Twins’,arethe existingtwomodelsinthecategory. the bike maker is to bring in new customers ■ A challenging goal for ■ The 350-cc Hunter, launched in August, is specifically built to attract customers moving up from the less-than 200cc segment Most of Royal Enfield’s volumes come from motorcycles with an engine less than 350cc, while a smallerpiecomprisesbikeswithbigger engine capacity, including the At `1.5 lakh, the Hunter is the most affordable Royal Enfield model on its J-Series platform. The Classic 350, Meteor 350 and the Bullet 350 are the other models on the platform ■ ■ The Hunter is designed to be more accessible, lighter and easy for handling Twins. Since consumers'appetiteforbiggermotorcycles is growing, Royal Enfield wants to expand its offering in this segment to tap the potential market. ■ The brand will gauge its success not from its volumes, but acceptability to new buyers The shift in demand is also visible in the volumes. By the end of FY21,bikeswithbigger-than-350cc engines was 8.85%.But byAugustend, this had almost doubled to 15.5%.The brand is confident this natural progression will continue. “A 350cc owner will not replace his bikewith another350cc.Hewill look for an upgrade.We will have a much wider choice (of products) in the next 18-24 months forupgrading the existing Royal Enfield customers,” said Siddhartha Lal, managing director, Eicher Motors, at a recent inventor day conference. The brand’s other more challenging goal is to bring new customers into the fold.These are customers moving up from the less-than-200cc segment and have never owned a Royal Enfield. For such customers, Royal Enfield introduced the Hunter, a new 350cc motorcycle, which the companyclaims is specificallybuilt to address the needs of the new buyer.“We discovered that the customers wanted something more accessible,lighterand easyforhandling.That’s how we developed the Hunter,”MarkWells,chiefofdesign, Royal Enfield, said in August,when the Hunterwas launched. Pricedat `1.5 lakh,the Hunteris the fourth and the most affordable model from Royal Enfield based on the J-Series platform. The Classic 350,Meteor350 and Bullet 350 are the other models on the same platform. Royal Enfield did not share booking or sales numbers of the Hunter,but claims itis not aftervolumes to gauge the model’s success, but its acceptability to new buyers. Continued on Page 2
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