Indian wind energy major, Suzlon, has announced major restructuring plans for its German subsidiary REpower Systems to help streamline operations.
Indian steel giant Tata Steel has reportedly warned the British government that it plans to shut down two research and development (R&D) facilities in the country.
In a move that will be seen as a major blow to Britain’s already struggling industrial base, the company plans to close its technology centres on Teesside and in Rotherham over the next 18 months.
The firm is likely to shift some of this research to the Netherlands and India, resulting in 300-400 job cuts in the UK.
In November last year, the company had revealed plans to restructure its British business, which is expected to lead to 12 site closures and 900 job losses.
Its Europe operations have been hit by a combination of high energy costs, falling demand and plummeting steel prices, which have fallen by 5 per cent in the past month.
Demand has slumped 30 per cent since 2007, largely as a result of China’s slowing growth rate putting the brakes on its appetite for the metal.
Despite the tough environment, it has invested hundreds of millions of pounds in the British operations, including £185 million on a new blast furnace at Port Talbot in south Wales — the company’s prime asset in the UK.
South Korea’s spirits brand Jinro has entered into a deal with Indian alcoholic beverage firm, Advent Brand House, for bottling and distribution.
Jinro is a soju drink made from grain that is endorsed by chart-topping Gangnam star PSY and is the world’s top selling spirit brand from the region.
The brand Jinro 24 will be imported and bottled in Goa and the Indian firm will pay royalty to HiteJinro Co for bottling and distribution rights in the country.
The Seoul-listed HiteJinro is banking on Jinro's high drinkability and youthful image to tap into the rising Indian market, where soju as a category is new. Brand Jinro will initially be available in the 375 ml green bottles.
Many global spirits companies are keen on entering the Indian spirits market since Diageo announced its acquisition plans for Vijay Mallya’s United Spirits Limited.
Indian software solutions provider, Tech Mahindra, has clinched its third major acquisition in the last few months with the takeover of the assets and operations of Sony Mobile Communications AB in Sweden.
The newly-created AirAsia India, a subsidiary of the Malaysian low-cost carrier, has filed its application for a licence to launch a new airline in the country.
AirAsia, which had announced a tie-up with the Tata Group, has plans to take off with a few aircraft and eventually bring in 37 Airbus planes over the next five years.
The new joint venture company is likely to have at least six members on its board, comprising two nominees each from AirAsia and Tata Sons and one representative from Telestra Tradeplace. All three hold a 49:30:21 share in the JV respectively.
The venture had received a formal nod from India’s Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) earlier this month to set up a company in the country.
AirAsia’s fleet consists of Airbus A320 aircraft and it has reportedly begun hiring cabin and cockpit crew for its no-frills Indian domestic operations launch.
It marks a major step in the country’s aviation sector, which was opened up to 49 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI) last year to ease pressure of mounting operating costs among Indian airlines.
The AirAsia application follows news of Etihad Airways’ acquisition of a 24 per cent stake in Indian private carrier Jet Airways.
Swedish luxury car-maker Volvo Auto plans to focus on Asian markets, especially India and China, as a natural process given the slowdown in the European markets.
The company expects a growth of 35 per cent in the region this year, with a sale of 1,100 units.
It will launch its premium crossover vehicle V40 across India by the end of this June and expects sales to reach 50 per cent of the total sales in the country.
Volvo set up its first showroom in India in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, and plans to open more dealership showrooms along the same lines in the coming months in key cities of Kolkata, Mumbai and New Delhi.
The company has two manufacturing plants in Sweden and Belgium and a third one in China, where production is expected to start this year. The facility in China will cater to the Chinese market, where 50,000 units have been sold. For the Indian market, Volvo plans to import from its other two plants.
American information technology and software major Microsoft has emerged as India’s most attractive employer for the third consecutive year in 2013.
According to a survey by HR services firm Randstad, Hewlett Packard and Google India came in second and third. Others in the top 10 most attractive employer list included – IBM (4th), ONGC (5th), Sony (6th), Larsen & Toubro (7th), Steel Authority of India (8th), SBI (9th) and Tata Consultancy Services (10th).
The survey, which covered 7,000 respondents, claimed that employer branding was key in a high-attrition market like India to attract and retain talent.
It also found that the Indian workforce prefers a competitive salary and job security. The other factors that featured in the top five are pleasant working atmosphere, work-life balance and career progression opportunities.
Thailand-based hospitality chain, Lebua Hotels & Resorts, is looking at expanding in India with four luxury properties in the next two years and an investment of over $368 million.
The company has narrowed down cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Goa and Rishikesh for these new hotels.
It is reportedly in talks with three property owners and a deal is likely to be sealed within this year.
Lebua currently operates three properties in Rajasthan, one in Udaipur and two in Jaipur, with a total capacity of 140 rooms.
Globally, the company has six luxury properties in three countries – Thailand, New Zealand and India – with a 40 per cent focus on corporate business and 60 per cent on leisure.
Lebua plans to provide air charter services to its properties within the next three months. With an eye on China and Indonesia, it also plans to take its global tourism business share in Asia from 26 per cent to 74 per cent in the coming years.
Soon after India’s famous billionaire brothers decided to end years of family feud to strike up a historic telecom deal, the Ambanis are clearly being seen as a formidable united force globally.
Prowl Germany UG, which is a pioneer in retailing high class European baby and mother care brands to the Asian market, plans to invest $111.26 million in India.
The German company plans to invest in a manufacturing plant and chain of stores over the next four-five years.
Prowl is preparing to file an application for foreign direct investment (FDI) in the multi-brand retail section. Until the FDI clearance, the company plans to import and sell its products through distributors.
In January, it entered into a distribution partnership with Zaal Commercial Private Limited for its feeding accessories brand Nip. It has so far launched Nip in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala in the south of India.
The company is also looking at appointing more distributors to launch other products across the country. Besides Nip, its range includes wooden toys brand Hess-Spielzeug, portable baby beds brand Deryan, and Spiegelburg International’s concept and character-based products range.