Dhanlaxmi Bank CEO was voted out by shareholders: the second such ouster of a private lender's top executive in less than a week. Reliance Industries said General Atlantic will buy a 0.84% stake in its retail arm and Silver Lake co-investors will make an additional investment. The government kept its full-year borrowing limit unchanged at Rs 12 trillion. The Supreme Court ordered domestic airlines to refund tickets booked for travel during a nationwide lockdown earlier this year. Here is more on what made news this week.
- Reliance Industries said private equity firm General Atlantic will invest $498.31 million for a 0.84% stake in its retail arm, while Silver Lake co-investors will put in an additional $254.89 million in the unit. Reliance is seeking investors for the retail arm after raising more than $20 billion in recent months for its digital unit.
- Dhanlaxmi Bank shareholders ousted CEO Sunil Gurbaxani at the lender’s annual meeting. Gurbaxani was voted out over a proposed preferential issue, which would have brought down the existing shareholders’ stake, and a management pitch to open 25 branches in North India. Lakshmi Vilas Bank MD and CEO S Sundar and six other directors were voted out by shareholders last week.
- The Supreme Court ordered domestic airlines to refund tickets booked for travel during a nationwide lockdown earlier this year, dealing a blow to an industry already strapped for cash. The court also asked airlines to issue credit vouchers even for tickets booked for travel outside the lockdown period, if the flights were later canceled due to coronavirus-related restrictions.
- The government kept its full-year borrowing limit unchanged at Rs 12 trillion, reckoning that revenue pick-up will compensate for its expenditure, even if it has to announce a stimulus package. The second half borrowing programme will be Rs 4.34 trillion: 36.16% of the total borrowing planned.
- Google said apps selling goods on Play Store will have to use its billing system and pay a percentage of the in-app purchase as fee. Google, which was recently embroiled in a controversy after blocking Paytm app for a few hours, said its "long standing and existing" policy applies to less than 3 per cent of developers on Play Store.
- The Reserve Bank of India postponed a three-day meeting of its monetary policy committee without giving a reason. It was probably canceled because the panel didn’t have enough people to convene; the six-person committee requires four officials to proceed. The terms of three members have expired, and requests that the government extend their tenure were met with the formation of a group to select new ones instead.
- India's government will contest the arbitration award it lost against Vodafone, as it reassures international pension and insurance funds keen to invest in the country, Business Standard reported. Vodafone Group Plc last week won an international arbitration case against India in a $2 billion tax dispute.
A few links for further reading
Hard path to growth
The signals for the economy are not positive: overall demand is yet to pick up; the share of total exports in India’s GDP is declining, and industrial output pattern remains worrying.
Small savings scheme
Investors breathed a sigh of relief when the government announced that interest rates on these instruments would not be revised for the fourth quarter of the calendar year.
Invest and emigrate
The great Indian dream of settling abroad is achievable if one has a few crores to invest. Rich nations offer a variety of investment options in a quid pro quo arrangement: immigrants get a better quality of life and revenue from them helps these countries’ finances. Wealthy Indians, troubled by polluted cities and the red tape holding up entrepreneurship, may want a quick ticket out of the country. Sanjay Kumar Singh lists a range of options: from a Canadian province’s investor programme to America’s US EB-5 plan.