Hero Honda promoter pledges further stake

Hero Investments Pvt Ltd has pledged further shares of the company to IL&FS Trust Company Ltd, raising an estimated Rs200 crore

Promoter of Hero Honda, Hero Investments Pvt Ltd (HPIL), has pledged further shares of the company to IL&FS Trust Company Ltd, raising an estimated Rs200 crore.

In a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), Hero Honda said HIPL has pledged an additional 13,18,653 shares aggregating 0.66% stake in the company on 7th March.

On the basis of the closing price of the company's shares on the BSE on 7th March, the value of the pledge stake is around Rs200 crore.

With the transaction, IL&FS Trust Company has now increased its stake in the two-wheeler maker to 5.98% from 5.32% before. In the first week of this month, HIPL raised an estimated Rs1,585 crore by pledging 5.32% stake with IL&FS Trust Co.

On 9th March, the company also raised Rs900 crore by pledging shares to Axis Trustee Services Ltd.

HIPL is one of the main shareholders of Hero Honda, holding 17.33% stake in the company as on 31 December 2010.

The BM Munjal led Hero Group is raising funds to finance the buyout of Honda's 26% stake in Hero Honda for Rs3,841.83 crore.

The group also said it will raise funds from private equity firms, including Bain Capital and Lathe Investment, estimated to be around Rs4,500 crore to finance its buyout by selling stake in HIPL. It has already sought government clearance to bring in foreign investment of up to Rs4,500 crore in HIPL.

On Wednesday, Hero Honda ended 0.22% down at Rs1,517.45 on the BSE, while the benchmark Sensex gained 1.05% to 18,358.

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Somany Ceramics to double exports biz by next fiscal

Somany Ceramics is looking at strengthening its presence in the overseas markets, including South Africa and the Middle East, with plans to double its exports within the next fiscal

Tiles maker Somany Ceramics said it is looking at strengthening its presence in the overseas markets, including South Africa and the Middle East, with plans to double its exports within the next fiscal.

The company, which had a turnover of Rs560 crore last fiscal, said at present around 3% of its annual sales comes from abroad. It plans to increase it to 6% within the next fiscal.

"At present, the export business is not significant, contributing about 3% to our overall sales. In the coming fiscal, we want to take it to 6%," Somany Ceramics joint managing director Abhishek Somany said.

The company said it is setting up exclusive outlets outside the country, starting with Nepal followed by South Africa and in the Middle East.
"We are emphasising a lot on our export business. We now have a product mix which is being accepted in the international markets. Setting up exclusive stores will help in establishing our brand abroad," he said.

The company, which currently exports only tiles, is looking at introducing its sanitary ware products in the overseas markets.

Besides, Somany said the firm is exploring opportunities to enter into Germany, France and Australia. At present, Somany Ceramics has presence in Nepal, Middle East, South Africa, England and the US.

On the domestic front, the company is also planning to double its retail presence taking the number of exclusive outlets to 120 by the end of the next fiscal.

Somany, however, did not reveal the kind of investment the firm is likely to put for executing plans both in India and abroad. The company usually spends about Rs70 crore to Rs80 crore on product development and marketing in a year, he added.

On Wednesday, Somany Ceramics ended 0.13% down at Rs39 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex gained 1.05% to 18,358.

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Royal Sundaram signs MoU for implementing RSBY scheme in Bihar

Royal Sundaram will provide health insurance cover, under the government sponsored Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna, to the below poverty line families in Sheohar, Vaishali and Kishengunj

Royal Sundaram Alliance Insurance, the first private sector general insurance company to be licensed in India, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government of Bihar. Royal Sundaram will provide health insurance cover, under the government sponsored Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna (RSBY), to the below poverty line (BPL) families in Sheohar, Vaishali and Kishengunj.  

RSBY is a unique scheme which empowers the card holder to get treatment from all RSBY network hospitals across India. The beneficiaries under the scheme will have to pay the registration fee of Rs30 to get them enrolled under the scheme. The MoU renewal will be effective from 1 April 2011.
Royal Sundaram has put up a district kiosk centre in every district for efficient coordination and rectifications in the smart cards. Beneficiaries seeking further assistance can also avail the company's 24x7 helpline number 06122206843 (Patna Call Center Number)

The 'Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana' (RSBY) envisages smart card based cashless health insurance cover of Rs30,000 to a BPL family of five for meeting hospitalisation expenses, taking care of most of the illnesses including maternity benefit and also covering new born for remaining policy period. All pre-existing diseases are covered. The scheme also covers transportation cost of Rs100 per visit with an overall limit of Rs1,000 per year.

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