QBiz: 3 New iPhones; 15 Japanese Companies to Invest in Gujarat
1. Apple iPhone X Launched, Coming to India on 3 November
The Apple iPhone X is finally here. This new Apple flagship will be coming to India on 3 November. It’s going to cost you Rs 89,000 for the 64 GB variant, and as of now there is no pricing yet for the 256 GB variant. (It starts at $999 in the US.)
This is the first iPhone with bezel-less (or in simple terms, edge-to-edge) display. In addition to that, Apple has gotten rid of the Touch ID, and replaced it with Face ID, that recognises faces even in darkness thanks to infrared technology.
iPhone X (pronounced iPhone ten) is the big launch that Apple had been planning for its tenth anniversary. From whatever we’ve seen with the leaks, Apple has shown us what we expected. The iPhone X will be available in two variants: 64GB and 256GB.
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2. 15 Japanese Companies to Invest in Gujarat
As many as fifteen Japanese firms would sign agreements to invest in Gujarat during Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit, while the state would also get a cheaper loan for infrastructure development from Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the government announced on 12 September.
According to Gujarat Chief Secretary, JN Singh, 15 Japanese companies are keen to invest in Gujarat and will be signing agreements with the state government during the 12th Indo-Japanese annual summit in Gandhinagar on 14 September.
3. Shell Companies: Govt Identifies Over 1 Lakh Directors for Blacklist
Walking the talk on improving statutory compliance by unlisted companies and to check abuse of the corporate structure for money laundering, the government on Tuesday identified over 100,000 directors of suspected shell companies to bar them from the boards of other firms.
A ministry of corporate affairs statement said it had zeroed in on 106,578 directors for disqualification as of 12 September for associating with companies that had not filed financial statements or annual returns for three straight years.
Detailed investigations will follow to determine whether these directors are proxies representing the beneficial interests of people who use shell companies to evade taxes or to launder money.
4. Govt Approves BSNL's Plan to Spin off Mobile Tower Business
The Union Cabinet approved a proposal to separate Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd’s (BSNL) mobile tower assets into a new unit, a move that will potentially generate revenues and improve finances of the state-run telecom firm.
“This approval authorizes BSNL to monetize its telecom tower infrastructure,” the government said in a statement on Tuesday.
BSNL owns more than 66,000 mobile towers in India, almost 15 percent of the around 442,000 mobile towers in the country.
5. Tata Sons to Raise Stake in Tata Global Beverages, Tata Chemicals
Tata Sons Ltd, the holding firm of the Tata group, on Tuesday said it would raise its shareholding in Tata Global Beverages Ltd and Tata Chemicals Ltd by up to 6.84 percent and 4.39 percent, respectively.
The move is part of a larger strategy adopted by Tata Sons’ chairman N Chandrasekaran to disentangle cross-holdings of group companies and simplify structures.
The value of the acquisitions is estimated at Rs 1,458 crore. Tata Sons will buy as many as 43.1 million shares, or a 6.84 percent stake, in Tata Global from Tata Chemicals as part of the restructuring. Tata Chemicals said Tata Sons will acquire up to 11.1 million shares, or a 4.39 percent stake, in the company from Tata Global.
6. Centre Clears Bill to Double Tax-Free Gratuity to Rs 20 Lakh
The Centre today approved an amendment bill that seeks to double tax-free gratuity for formal sector employees to Rs 20 lakh.
"The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given its approval to introduction of the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill, 2017, in Parliament," an official statement said.
The amendment will put the maximum limit of gratuity of employees of the private sector as well as public undertakings and autonomous organisations under the government who are not covered under Central Civil Services (Pension) Rules, at par with central government employees, which is Rs 20 lakh.
7. Telecom Commission Rejects Jio's Demands, Favours Relief for Telcos
The Telecom Commission (TC) has asked the inter-ministerial panel looking into the health of the telecom sector to consider ways for giving greater and immediate relief to telcos, which are facing high debt levels and falling revenues, said a senior government official.
The unexpected move by TC – the highest decision-making body in the telecom department (DoT) – gives hope to India's older telcos such as Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India, Idea Cellular, Reliance Communications and Tata Teleservices. They had been disappointed by the panel's suggestions of just extending the fee-payment tenure for auctioned airwaves to 16 years from 10 years and lowering interest rates payable on unpaid dues.
New entrant Reliance Jio, which has disrupted the telecom sector with rock-bottom tariffs, has opposed any relief. The inter-ministerial group (IMG) was set up in June.
8. Sebi Stricture on Startups: Angels Must Now Learn to Fly With Clipped Wings
Startups and their early-stage lifelines — angel networks — will now have to walk a thin line to be on the right side of law. A few weeks ago, Sebi told these networks that they can in no way violate the rules of 'private placement' of securities — a stricture that would restrict these crowdfunding agencies as well as the startups they help to raise money from offering and selling stocks to more than 200 investors.
Networks that break the rules will be labelled as "unrecognised stock exchanges" and penalised for misusing their platforms; along with their startup clients, the networks can be pulled up under various laws like Companies Act, Sebi Act, and Securities Contract (Regulation) Act.
9. Jet Airways Q1 Net Doubles to Rs 53 Cr on Higher Other Income
Higher other income helped Jet Airways double its standalone profit to Rs 53.5 crore in first quarter FY 2018 on a year on year basis. In the same quarter last year, the airline posted Rs 25.8 crore profit.
Revenue from operations grew 10 percent to Rs 5,648 crore due to increase in the number of passengers and average fares. The airline also saw a 76 percent increase in code share revenue. Expenses rose 11.6 percent to Rs 5,843 crore largely on account of higher fuel cost. The airline, however, managed to lower its unit costs excluding fuel.
Gains including Rs 113-crore profit on completion of the land development project in Bandra Kurla complex in Mumbai and lower provision in respect to its subsidiary JetLite boosted the company's Q1 result.