Kotak Mahindra MF new issue closes on 8th February
Kotak Mahindra Mutual Fund has launched Kotak FMP Series 34 (370 Days), a close-ended income scheme.
The investment objective of the scheme is to generate returns through investments in debt and money market instruments with a view to significantly reduce the interest rate risk. The scheme will invest in debt and money market securities, maturing on or before maturity of the scheme. The exit load is nil. The tenure of the scheme will be 370 days after the date of allotment of units.
The new issue closes on 8th February. The minimum investment amount is Rs5,000.
Karvy Group, through its wealth management arm, Karvy Private Wealth, took over the wealth management business of iTrust Financial Advisors
Karvy Group, through its wealth management arm, Karvy Private Wealth, took over the wealth management business of iTrust Financial Advisors, an independent financial advisory firm, with operations in Delhi/NCR, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
The takeover catapults Karvy's position to make it one of the largest players in the non banking wealth management space. Further, it will help speeden up expansion in key cities and gives access to a robust and industry leading online platform.
Hrishikesh Parandekar, CEO, Karvy Private Wealth said, "With the iTrust takeover, we are strengthening ourselves to provide expanded reach, superior technology, increased number of services and reach out better to the emerging affluent and HNI investors in India."
Karvy Private Wealth provides customers services which includes comprehensive financial planning, wealth review & investment strategy, retirement planning, goal-driven investing, risk management & insurance planning, property purchase & financing, ESOP advisory, equity and F&O trading, portfolio management services, structured products among others.
iTrust was founded in 2006 by Dhruv Agarwala and Kartik Varma. Since inception, iTrust has developed a unique worksite model.
Mobile number portability may not be a game changer for the industry, but it could affect margins of mobile operators trying to lure subscribers with free talk-time
The much-touted and awaited mobile number portability (MNP), which allows a subscriber to change the operator while keeping the same number, is turning out to be just a ‘feel good’ facility, or what is termed in medical terminology as 'placebo', a simulated medical intervention that can produce a perceived improvement.
Although the initial euphoria for MNP is still there, its impact so far has been lacklustre and it may not be a game changer for the telecom industry. According to a PTI report, based on the daily MNP figure reported by telecom service providers, there has been request from over 11 lakh customers to switch from their existing network. This is just 0.15% of the total mobile subscribers in the country.
While the subscriber may feel that, s/he has now got rid of a troublesome operator through MNP, which would be the placebo effect, there could be different issues with the new operator.
"Our initial survey to ascertain the likely impact of MNP post implementation leads us to believe that our early thesis has been ratified. We continue to believe that MNP may not be a game changer, as subscriber switching will be restricted between a few service providers, but it could impact margins as customers are offered more bang (minutes) for the buck," Edelweiss Securities Ltd said in a research report.
Mobile operators in the Mumbai circle are offering free talk-time for post-paid subscribers, mainly to reduce the churning due to MNP. Bharti Airtel is offering 15,000 seconds or 250 minutes talk-time free on a rental of Rs249 per month. Vodafone is offering 12,000 seconds or 200 minutes on a rental of Rs299 and 800 local minutes free on a rental of Rs399 per month. Idea Cellular, one of the late entrants in the lucrative Mumbai circle, is offering more free minutes in order to grab more subscribers through MNP. Idea is offering 400 minutes talk-time free on a rental of Rs179 per month.
Interestingly, state-run Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL) and Bharti are waiving all charges, including the Rs19 porting fee, SIM card charges and activation fees. Idea, on the other hand is collecting Rs19 as porting fee and Rs99 for SIM card and activation from new subscribers who are porting their connection.
Although the exact number of subscribers who have changed their operator through MNP is not available, according to a report in the Business Standard, Idea has been the biggest gainer and Reliance Communication (RCom) has been the biggest loser so far. In the Mumbai circle, Idea has already got 12,300 subscribers through MNP, while Vodafone has 11,252, Bharti 94 and Aircel 3,389 subscribers. RCom is said to have lost 9,645 subscribers, the newspaper reported.
MNP is beneficial for both post-paid and pre-paid subscribers and analysts suggest that the lower porting charge would give a further impetus to prepaid churn. “The TRAI-notified porting charges (PC) is lower than our and the industry’s expectations and this would boost higher uptake of MNP from the low average revenues per user (ARPU) segment, mostly prepaid subscribers, leading to higher churn rates from the current 4.5%-8% per month, at least in the short run,” Anand Rathi Financial Services said in a report.
Of the total number of mobile phone subscribers in India, only 5% are from the post-paid segment. Interestingly, it has been revealed that out of the estimated 70 crore subscribers, 70% are active users.
According to data from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), industry post-paid tariff is about 80% higher than pre-paid tariff. This could be one reason for post-paid subscribers to go in for MNP. Other reasons why subscribers are changing the operator are poor network quality, high tariff and poor quality of customer service.
Fitch Ratings expects pricing pressure, which so far had been on the pre-paid segment, to spread to the post-paid segment after MNP, although to a lesser extent. In addition, new entrants and smaller wireless telecoms will get a stronger chance to compete against incumbent leaders in the post-paid segment where the annual churn rate is only 12%-24% compared to 50%-70% in pre-paid, the ratings agency said.
Standard Chartered Securities (India) echoed this in a note, saying, "MNP will have an impact on post-paid tariffs, however, the overall impact will be limited given that post-paid is 12%-18% of total revenues. Given the greater stickiness of post-paid and the 3G 'promise', the incumbents may not be required to match the tariff offers completely. Scattered 3G distribution will also make it difficult for other 3G players like Tata-Docomo and Aircel to make a broad-based impact."
Few operators have seen any noticeable change in the area of corporate subscribers. According to Edelweiss, corporate customers believe MNP will not make them change a service provider. However, they are expecting attractive schemes as far as 3G services are concerned. "Within 3G services, it is mainly internet access which corporate customers believe will be of some interest, while video calling is not expected to be a key area of interest. Also, on 3G services there is limited activity that corporates have experienced from their service providers, indicating that there is still some time for 3G services to be launched in Mumbai," the brokerage added.
While the initial euphoria associated with anything new is still there for MNP, according to information there is no significant change in the subscriber market share of operators. Although operators are trying to woo subscribers with many offers, they may not be able to sustain this given the costs associated with the 3G rollout and proposed changes in the new telecom policy (NTP-2011).
The recently announced framework for NTP-2011, or auction-based spectrum allocation, could impose a further burden on the new entrants, currently stuck at 4.4MHz. While incumbents would also have to shell out more for excess spectrum beyond 6.2Mhz, the impact might be offset by the proposal to replace the slab-wise spectrum charge, currently at 3%-8% of adjusted gross revenues (AGR) for 4.4Mhz-15Mhz with an uniform revenue share irrespective of spectrum held.
TRAI is likely to recommend the modalities of new spectrum pricing norms and spectrum charge, after which the policy is likely to be finalised.