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QBiz: RIL Picks 25% in ALT Balaji; ICICI to Provide Loans Via ATMs

The Quint brings to you the important business stories from the previous day. 

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1. Mukesh Ambani's RIL Picks up 25% in Balaji Telefilms for Rs 413 Crore

Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Industries has picked up a significant minority stake (24.9%) in India's leading TV content production company Balaji Telefilms.

RIL and Balaji Telefilms announced on Thursday that the former will pick up 2.52 crore preferential shares of Balaji Telefilms at Rs 164 apiece, making a total investment of Rs 413.28 crore.

Balaji Telefilms, which has launched an over-the-top (OTT) service Alt Balaji earlier this year, will use the funds to speed up content development initiatives, especially for ALT.

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2. Now, ICICI Customers Can Get up to Rs 15 Lakh as Personal Loans at ATMs

Largest private sector lender ICICI Bank will be selling personal loans of up to Rs 15 lakh through its ATMs that can be availed of by select salaried customers even if they haven't previously applied for one.

Using data from credit information companies, the lender will pre-qualify select customers for personal loans.

Such customers will get a message on the ATM screen after completing a transaction, informing about their eligibility for personal loans.

Source: PTI

3. Under Vikram Limaye, NSE Applies to Settle Co-Location Case With Sebi

The National Stock Exchange of India Ltd (NSE) on Thursday sought a settlement with the markets regulator over allegations that it had provided unfair access to its high-frequency trading systems to some brokers.

NSE applied to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) for a settlement through the so-called consent mechanism three days after Vikram Limaye took charge as managing director and chief executive officer.

Under the consent mechanism, entities can settle charges by paying a penalty without admission or denial of guilt.

Source: Livemint

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4. Zee Media Corporation in Advanced Talks to Buy BTVi

Zee Media Corporation is in advanced discussions to acquire Business Broadcast News, an Anil Ambani-owned company that operates English business news channel BTVi, several people with direct knowledge of the matter said.

A deal is imminent and the matter will come up for approval before Zee Media's board at its meeting scheduled for next week, they said, speaking on the condition of anonymity.

Zee Media could pay between Rs 80 crore and Rs 100 crore for the company, one of them said. "ZMCL (Zee Media) is interested in buying BTVi as it will add an English business channel to its portfolio and complement Zee Business (a Hindi channel)."

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5. Microsoft Profit Beats Estimates on Strong Cloud Demand, Shares Jump 1%

Microsoft Corp reported a quarterly profit that more than doubled, helped by a tax benefit and strong growth in its cloud business.

The company's net income rose to $6.51 billion, or 83 cents per share, in the fourth quarter ended 30 June from $3.12 billion, or 39 cents per share, a year earlier.

On an adjusted basis, revenue rose 9.1 percent to $24.7 billion.

Microsoft's shares rose 1 percent in trading after the bell on Thursday.

Source: Reuters

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6. Reliance Net Profit up 28% on Stable Crude Oil Prices

Mukesh Ambani’s oil-to-telecom conglomerate Reliance Industries reported net profit of ₹9,108 crore for the June 2017 quarter, up 28 percent from the corresponding period last year.

Record segment profits in the marketing of petroleum products, petrochemicals and organised retail pushed net profit to an all-time high, buoyed by stable crude oil prices.

The company has not begun to disclose separate performance numbers for its newly-launched 4G telecom service Jio but has announced further investment in this business.

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7. Wipro to Go for Rs 11,000 Crore Share Buyback, Q1 Results Better Than Expected

Wipro Ltd on Thursday said its board had approved a Rs 11,000 crore-share buyback plan, the second in as many years by India’s third largest I-T services company which completed a Rs 2,500-crore share buyback last year.

Wipro’s decision to go for a share buyback mirrors a trend followed by other homegrown IT companies. India’s largest software services company, Tata Consultancy Services Ltd, completed a Rs 16,000-crore buyback in May, while Infosys Ltd has also promised to return Rs 13,000 crore to shareholders through dividends and/or share buyback this fiscal.

Source: Livemint

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8. BMR’s M&A, Risk Consulting Business to be Merged With KPMG India

Advisory firm, KPMG India, on Thursday announced merger of transactions (merger and acquisition) and risk consulting business of BMR with it.

This merger will bring together strengths of both organisations across corporate finance, transactions tax, transaction support and risk consulting businesses – areas in which BMR has a strong presence.

"The combined domain expertise of the two firms will significantly enhance our impact in the domestic market, strengthening our 'one M&A' initiative and our risk consulting offerings," KPMG India chairman and CEO, Arun Kumar, said in statement.

Source: PTI

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9. Battle Over Margins Brews Between Britannia and Its Distributors

Britannia Industries Ltd. is locked in a faceoff with its distributors in Kerala over margins.

The food and dairy products maker stopped supplies to its dealers in Kerala earlier this month after they demanded higher margins. The confrontation is likely to spill over as distributors from other states have also raised similar demands.

“Britannia is not willing to understand the issues regarding rising operating costs,” said Dhairyashil Patil, national president, All India Consumer Products Distributors’ Federation. “We will stand by Kerala distributors.”

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