Booming and Bubbling India-V

India tops global markets with 26% growth: The Indian equity market has outperformed the markets of both emerging and developed nations for the past three months, growing at 25.87 per cent, according to the Standard and Poor’s May Global Stock Market Review. Accordingto Market analysts, the Indian markets showed good returns on account of improved performance of Indian corporates along with the appreciating rupee, which has led to higher inflows from foreign investors to the Indian economy.

Global generic firms gung ho on Indian buys: Global generic companies such as Merck and Pfizer are scouting for big-ticket Indian acquisitions as huge amounts of money is sitting on the fence ready to fund biotech ventures.

Small buyouts bring big gains: Jain Irrigation Systems bought a 50 per cent stake in Israel’s NaanDan Irrigation Systems a fortnight ago. It will help Jain Irrigation emerge as the world’s largest drip- irrigation company in two years. Standard & Poor’s recently named Jain Irrigation in its global list of 300 mid-sized companies most likely to challenge world’s leading companies. United Phosphorus’ invested Rs 1,000 crore last year to buy five brands and one foreign company, Cerexagri. In the process, the firm became the 11th largest agri-company in the global pecking order from its previous ranking of 17. Last year, Wipro spent over Rs 800 crore on six European and US companies, including Austria’s R&D services boutique NewLogic, New Jersey’s payment processor mPower, and Michigan’s mechanical design services firm Quantech.

Biotech industry touches $2 bn revenue: The biotechnology industry has touched $2-billion mark in revenue for 2006-07 from the $1 billion in 2004-05, and seems to be on the right track to meet its target of $5 billion by 2010. The biopharma sector touched $1.4-billion mark while the bio-services sector reached $250 million. The bio-agri sector crossed the $250-million mark.The industry grew by 30%, with bio-agri scoring the highest growth rate at 50% and largest acreage of nine million. Investments in the Indian biotechnology sector crossed $580 million in 2006-2007.

US-based solar chip-maker to invest $2b in India: The Palo Alto, California-based Signet Solar Inc., founded in 2006 to design and manufacture low-cost thin-film silicon modules that convert solar energy into power, plans to set up three solar photovoltaic manufacturing fab units in India at an investment of over $2 billion (Rs8, 100 crore) spread over the next 10 years.

Hexagon to invest Rs 45 cr in R&D: Hexagon Nutrition Pvt Ltd (HNPL), a 100 per cent technical collaboration of its New Zealand-based parent Hexagon Group, is planning to set up a research & development (R&D) centre adjacent to its facility at Dindori, 32 kms from Nashik, at an investment of Rs 45 crore.

Moser Baer starts commercial shipment of cells: Moser Baer Photo Voltaic Limited (MBPV) has commenced commercial shipment of its solar photovoltaic cells. The manufacturing facility has started producing photovoltaic cells at expected level of output with cell efficiency levels up to 15.5%.

India tops global consumer index:
Forty per cent of consumers globally considered the next 12 months a good time to buy things, but in India, Hong Kong and Scandinavia.

TCS wins SAP Pinnacle award: Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has won the SAP Pinnacle Award for providing high- quality products and solutions to customers.
The Indian company was given the award in the field of ‘Industry Solutions Go-To-Market For SAP Adaptive Manufacturing Solutions’.

TCS to hire 5,000 in Mexico: Tata Consultancy Services Ltd plans to hire 5,000 workers in Mexico in the next five years as labour costs climb in its home market because of a rising rupee.

The IT sector would require nearly five lakh professionals in the next five years to cater to the growing needs of this booming industry. Currently, the industry required three lakh professionals, however the number was expected to nearly double with the sector being poised for huge growth.

IT companies into global financial services sector: Indian software product firms I-Flex Solutions Ltd, Nucleus Software Exports Ltd, Infrasoft Technologies Ltd, Polaris Software Labs Ltd, the product arms of top software services houses Infosys Technologies Ltd and Tata Consultancy Services Ltd, and a growing number of small Indian players are beginning to dominate the banking and financial services industry.

President’s Vision: India is now working on its second space vision and will make significant contribution to low cost access to space and missions to the Moon and Mars.

India in ‘Economist’: The longer-term ascendance of India’s middle class, meanwhile, has been charted by the McKinsey Global Institute, which predicts that average incomes will have tripled by 2025, lifting nearly 300m Indians out of poverty and causing the middle class to grow more than tenfold, to 583m.

Indian SMEs Bets Big on Net: Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) in India will spend US$1.2 billion to beef up their Internet infrastructures and enhance their Internet access, according a new AMI-Partners study. Compared to 2006, online spending will jump 33 percent to reach US$300 million this year, of which India’s small businesses–defined as having fewer than 100 employees–will account for the lion’s share of the investment.

India’s Diamond Biz: India has long been the world’s biggest center for processing uncut diamonds imported from African mines, primarily in South Africa, Botswana, Congo, and Angola. It’s a $12 billion industry, and diamond polishing and processing factories in Gujarat and Maharashtra are big employers. India’s diamond industry employs about 3 million in all.

Dabbawallas in NYT: Mumbai residents rely on an intricately organized, labor-intensive operation that puts some automated high-tech systems to shame. It manages to deliver tens of thousands of meals to workplaces all over the city with near-clockwork precision.

FDI in real estate:
According to a report by property consultants Jones Lang LaSalle on rising FDI in real estate, an estimated $10 billion foreign investment is expected to enter the Indian real estate sector in the next 12-18 months.

Acquisitions abroad: The Gurgaon-based forging firm, Amtek Auto, has acquired the entire assets of the UK-based J L French’s (Witham), a company engaged in manufacturing high pressure die casting (HPDC) aluminium for automotive application, for an undisclosed sum. Sintex Industries has acquired US-based Wausaukee Composites Inc (WCI), manufacturer of engineered composite components for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in an all-cash transaction.

Egg production has increased to 46.2 billion currently from 38.7 billion at the end of the Ninth Plan. India currently ranks fourth in egg production.

UGC targets 15% enrolment: The UGC is ready with its higher education policy to be implemented under the 11th Plan (2007-12) that has the target of bringing another 45-50 lakh students to college between 2007-08 and 2011-12.

Georgia Tech’s intl campus now in Andhra: Atlanta-based Georgia Institute of Technology today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Andhra Pradesh government for setting up its international campus near Hyderabad. Focusing on systems engineering and research, the Georgia Tech aims to help in meeting the requirements of global corporations having large operations in the country such as IBM through its Indian campus.

Vaccines from Indian labs: The developments on some potentially revolutionary vaccines are taking place in Indian laboratories that are emerging as serious front-runners in the global vaccine race. A recombinant, protein-based malaria vaccine is being developed by the Delhi-based International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, in collaboration with Bharat Biotech International Ltd.

Cadence to up R&D output from India: India is emerging as the second largest research and development (R&D) centre for Cadence Design Systems, which specialises in electronic design and automation (EDA) tools and services. With a headcount of close to 1,000, Cadence India accounts for 22 per cent of the company’s worldwide R&D strength and 18 per cent of its total staff (5,200).

Piaggio to set up diesel engine unit near Pune: The Italy-based global transportation major, Piaggio & C Spa, will pump in ¤60-65 million over the next two to three years to set up a diesel engine manufacturing facility near Pune. The move comes as a part of the company’s plans to make India a global sourcing hub.

Exports of consumer electronics: Annual export growth in consumer electronics during the past five years is estimated at 27.33%. Colour televisions topped the exports in 2005-06. In value terms, exports increased to $190 million from $93.25 million in 2004-05. Exports of clocks and watches also registered record growth of 143% to become the second-ranking item last year.

Delhi Metro reduces pollution: The Delhi Metro helped save 33,000 tonnes of fuel and prevented the creation of over 2,275 tonnes of poisonous gases in the national capital in the past four years,

Exports increasing: NELCAST Ltd, a castings and component manufacturing company catering mainly to commercial vehicle and tractor industries, is increasing its exports from the present 10.2 per cent to almost 30 per cent for the financial year 2007-08.

Nokia India has seen exports from its telecom special economic zone (SEZ) at Sriperumbudur near Chennai reach Rs 1,650 crore in 2006-07, according to figures provided by the Madras Exports Processing Zone.

Indian newspaper circulation up: Newspaper circulations worldwide rose 2.3 per cent in 2006 with Indian sales increasing most with 12.93 per cent, the World Association of Newspapers (WAN) said in Cape Town.

Maruti achieves 26 pc reduction in energy consumption: Maruti Udyog Ltd (MUL) has brought down overall energy consumption at its Gurgaon facility by as much as 26 per cent per vehicle over the last six years. MUL has also reduced consumption of water and waste generated in car manufacturing,

Ramjas College, New Delhi switches to LCD: The College will have LCD projectors in place of blackboards. The students will now be able to explore online resources, including research papers of foreign universities and latest articles from international journals and magazines in the classroom itself. The college has spent around Rs 3.9 lakh for providing LCD projectors in each of the 26 classrooms. All teachers have also agreed to buy laptops for enhancing the quality of teaching.

A central university in each state and a degree college in each district: The gross enrollment ratio in high education is estimated around 9.1 per cent. The government hopes to raise this ratio to at least 15 per cent by 2012.

Do you agree that India is in boom mode?

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