India’s WPI inflation rises to 4.17% in February

Wholesale inflation in India jumped to a 27-month high in February 2021, as prices of food, fuel, and power surged. Inflation based on the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) increased to 4.17% in February, compared to 2.03% in January. The WPI Food Index rose to 3.31% in the same period, compared with -0.26% in January. It is estimated that core-WPI inflation will climb to 7-7.5% by May 2021. This indicates that there is increased pressure on India’s economy. The data was released by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. 

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Adani Ports receives LoI to build West Container Terminal at Colombo Port

A consortium led by Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd (APSEZ) has received a Letter of Intent (LoI) from the Sri Lankan government to build and run the West Container Terminal (WCT) at Colombo Port. APSEZ will own a majority stake of 51% in the terminal, while local partner John Keels Holding PLC will hold 34%. The remaining 15% will be held by Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA). WCT will have an annual capacity of 2.6 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs). [TEU is used to measure cargo capacity for container ships and container terminals]

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Laxmi Organic Industries IPO subscribed 2.28 times on first day of bidding

The Rs 600-crore initial public offering (IPO) of Laxmi Organic Industries was subscribed 2.28 times on the first day of bidding. The issue received bids for 7.42 crore equity shares against an offer size of 3.25 crore shares. The portion reserved for retail investors was subscribed 4.34 times. The portion set aside for non-institutional investors (NIIs) saw a subscription of 49% and that of qualified institutional buyers (QIBs) 1%.

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Finance Minister introduces Bill in Rajya Sabha to allow 74% FDI in insurance

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, on Monday, introduced a Bill in Rajya Sabha that seeks to amend the Insurance Act in order to increase foreign direct investment (FDI) in the insurance sector from 49% to 74%. On Wednesday (March 10), the Union Cabinet gave its approval for amendments to the Insurance Bill 2021. The increase in FDI limit will help improve life insurance penetration and create more value-based affordable healthcare for all Indians.

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Adani Welspun discovers gas in Mumbai Offshore’s Tapti-Daman sector

Adani Welspun Exploration Ltd (AWEL) announced its first-ever gas discovery in Nelp-VII block in the Tapti-Daman sector of the Mumbai Offshore basin. AWEL is a joint venture (JV) between Adani Group and Welspun Enterprises. The block is spread across 714.6 sq km and AWEL owns 100% interest in it. “This discovery will help take India closer to its target of becoming a gas-based economy,” said Gautam Adani, Chairman of the Adani Group.

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ITC to expand food portfolio by launching milkshakes, cakes: Report

As per a report from BloombergQuint, ITC Limited plans to expand its offerings in categories such as chocolates and staples, as it looks to boost its food portfolio. The report states that the company has also launched three varieties of cakes under the Sunfeast brand at Rs 10 per pack. It has also launched Sunfeast Wonderz Milk (milkshakes) in the range of Rs 25-35. The launches are part of ITC’s efforts to generate Rs 1 lakh crore revenue from its fast-moving consumer goods business.

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Tech Mahindra to acquire majority stake in Perigord Asset Holdings

Tech Mahindra Ltd has announced plans to acquire a 70% stake in Perigord Asset Holdings Ltd, an Ireland-based business process outsourcing (BPO) services company. The majority stake will be acquired directly and indirectly through its wholly-owned subsidiary— Mahindra Engineering Services (Europe) Ltd. The total cost of the acquisition is €21 million (~Rs 181.65 crore). The remaining 30% stake will be acquired over the next 4 years.

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Anupam Rasayan IPO subscribed 3.64 times on second day of bidding

The Rs 760-crore initial public offering (IPO) of Anupam Rasayan India was subscribed 3.64 times on the second day of bidding. The issue received bids for 3.53 crore equity shares against an offer size of 97.01 lakh shares. The portion reserved for retail investors was subscribed 6.6 times and that of employees 93%. The portion set aside for non-institutional investors (NIIs) saw a subscription of 1.39 times and that of qualified institutional buyers (QIBs) 37%.

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Shree Cement starts commercial production at Odisha unit

Shree Cement Limited has commenced commercial production at its new cement grinding unit at Athagarh Tehsil in Cuttack District, Odisha. The unit has a grinding capacity of 3 million tonnes per annum (MTPA). Shree Cement is a leading cement manufacturer based in Kolkata. It also produces and sells power under Shree Power and Shree Mega Power.

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Craftsman Automation IPO subscribed 55% on first day of bidding 

The Rs 823.70-crore initial public offering (IPO) of Craftsman Automation was subscribed 55% on the first day of bidding. The issue received bids for 21.31 lakh equity shares against an offer size of 38.70 lakh shares. The portion reserved for retail investors was subscribed 1.06 times. The portion set aside for non-institutional investors (NIIs) saw a subscription of 9%. QIBs are yet to put in bids for the IPO.

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Natco Pharma to launch pheromone-based product to control pests in cotton crop

Natco Pharma Limited will launch its first Green Label Pheromone product for the effective management of Pink Bollworm (PBW) in cotton crop during the Kharif season. The product will be launched under the brand ‘Natmate PBW’. This is the first pheromone-based product made in India that has received approval from the Central Insecticide Board (CIB). The damage to the quality and yield of cotton due to PBW is significant and severely affects the livelihood of small farmers in India.

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