Regulations
Merger of associate banks can start by September, says SBI chief

The high-powered committee headed by SBI managing director S Vishwanathan would submit its report by July-August, and later based on the report the merger process could start by September, SBI chairman Pratip Chaudhuri told reporters

State Bank of India on Friday said the proposed merger of its five associate banks with itself could start by September after a high-powered committee submits its report on the same.

 

The high-powered committee headed by SBI managing director S Vishwanathan would submit its report by July-August, and later based on the report the merger process could start by September, SBI chairman Pratip Chaudhuri told reporters.

 

State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Hyderabad, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Patiala, and State Bank of Travancore would be the target associate banks for merger, Chaudhuri said.

 

Out of five associate banks, three are listed, and two are in the direct ownership of SBI, he said, adding “we would take non-discriminatory way to decide and choose merger of any of the five associate banks. It would be a long process that would take employees’ confidence and participation”.

 

SBI’s capital was not so strong earlier, but with the March balance sheet the capital became very strong and for merger there should be a cash of Rs1,000-Rs3,000 crore, he said.

 

SBI did the first ever amalgamation of its associate State Bank of Saurashtra in 2008 followed by State Bank of Indore in August 2010.

 

On gold, whose large imports have widened the current account deficit, he said that RBI and government should take necessary steps to curb the demand for the precious metal.

 

Banks get just Rs5 on one gram of gold sold besides providing purity of gold to customers, the SBI chairman said.

 

Finance minister P Chidambaram on Thursday said that Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has advised banks not to sell gold coins to retail customers.

 

On loans to troubled carrier Kingfisher, Chaudhuri said that despite SBI’s efforts the airline could not stand up again, hence the recovery was underway against it.

 

“We are selling its shares, whereas the real estate disposal needed legal procedure and require auction and best bidder,” he said.

 

Saddled with an over Rs7,000 crore bank debt, besides dues to various stakeholders, Kingfisher reported net loss at Rs2,141.80 crore for the March quarter 2013.

 

The SBI Chairman expressed serious concerns that the country’s growth rate was reduced below 5%.

 

The RBI is balancing inflation and growth rate, he said, adding if the growth rate is ignored, it would bring very dangerous results.

 

“I think liquidity be raised, CRR be cut down, and raise the export credit which was very slow or halted,” he said.

 

Corporate segment is relatively low in the area of new investment, he said when asked on comment on corporate banks' role.

 

He also said that after getting success in opening new bank branches in the population density of 2,000, the bank would reach the smallest villages having human population of 1,000, and open ATMs and branches where ever possible.

 

“We want every one has not only a bank account but he or she should operate other products like insurance, mutual fund,” he said.

 

On new employment generation, SBBJ opened over 2,100 new jobs, while SBI gave 20,000 new jobs last year, the chairman said.

 

On a question the chairman said, “SBI is planning credit growth not less than 20% “.

 

Referring to SBBJ Annual General Meeting, Chaudhuri said shareholders expressed great satisfaction over the bank's growth and plans though it had NPA at 3.26%.

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Jet Airways CEO Nikos Kardassis quits; Hameed Ali appointed acting CEO

Ever since the airline clinched a stake sale deal with the Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways in the last week of April, the industry was abuzz with speculation that Kardassis was on his way out

Jet Airways chief executive Nikos Kardassis has resigned after a five-year stint with the company, and chief operating officer Capt Hameed Ali is the interim chief executive, the airline said on Friday.

 

The Naresh Goyal-led airline said in a filing to the BSE that Kardassis resigned with effect from 5th June, but it did not give any reason.

 

This was his second innings with Jet. Ever since the airline clinched a stake sale deal with the Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways in the last week of April, whereby it agreed to sell 24% stake for Rs2,042 crore, the industry was abuzz with speculation that Kardassis was on his way out.

 

Etihad reportedly demanded a change in the management under the deal, including removal of Goel’s wife from the airline’s board.

 

Under the sale agreement, the terms of which are being reworked following the Securities and Exchange Board of India’s (SEBI) objections, the Arab carrier will get three board members, including the CEO.

 

Kardassis returned to Jet on 15 October 2009 as acting CEO after Wolfgang Prock-Schauer quit, and was appointed CEO from 20 May 2010. Kardassis’ first term with Jet started in 1994 and lasted till 1999 and he was instrumental in the restructuring, cost/network management of the airline.

 

He had also served as senior vice-president, the Americas, for Jet, prior to his appointment as the CEO.

 

Meanwhile, the Foreign Investment Promotion Board will take up Gulf carrier Etihad’s planned stake buy in Jet Airways India on Tuesday.

 

For the quarter ended March, Jet reported deeper losses at Rs495.53 crore against a net loss of Rs298.12 crore for the same period year-ago. Total income from operations declined to Rs3,922 crore in the March quarter from Rs4,041.61 crore in the year-ago period.

 

For the full fiscal 2012-13, the second largest airline improved its bottomline by massively narrowing the losses to Rs485.5 crore against a net loss of Rs1,236 crore in FY12.

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Corporate governance issue: Narayana Murthy is not alone found wanting

Is this move (by Narayana Murthy) an admission about his failure in choosing Infosys leaders? If so why does he not admit it in public for the sake of corporate governance and transparency that he talks about all the time? Is trying to make comeback part of culture to cling on?

So NR Narayana Murthy is back to Infosys and he is being asked to save the company that seems to be slowing down. This time around he has even got his own son with him to help him save the sinking ship. What makes anyone think that he can save the company that he left as per his own resolve at the age of 65? Had he not said time and again that my children have no interest in running the company? What has changed for him to go back on his words? Was he not instrumental in putting place the management team at the time of his departure? Is this move an admission about his failure in choosing Kamat and Shibu Lal? If so why does he not admit it in public for the sake of corporate governance and transparency that he talks about all the time? Why this announcement was kept under wraps?
 

Of course, those in the know seem to have benefitted from this inside information as Moneylife has hinted here. He also never told us publicly why Mohandas Pai left abruptly? Will he tell us why he and other founders have sold most of their holdings in the company? Did they do that because they were aware that the Infy business model had run its course and there was no future in the company anymore?
 

Murthy was made into an icon and he was one, but is no more one! The problem with us is that we think good people never made bad mistakes. Actually great people make great mistakes. But we seem to either overlook those or tend to justify those mistakes by not acknowledging them.
 

But he is not alone who thinks that his company can only be rescued by him! We have other examples, as well’
 

Ratan Tata postponed his own retirement by 10 years! He kept saying that a successor was not in sight! The truth is he was reluctant to leave. A successor can be groomed or searched, but he did not do that till he was left with no choice. In the mean time Raadia tapes took some gloss off his persona as did his letter to Karunanidhi praising Raja! Had he retired at the self appointed time he could have avoided both!!
 

Another example is that of AM Naik of Larsen & Toubro (L&T). He says there is no one who can handle the complicated businesses that L&T runs except him! A very pompous argument!
 

In cricket we have Sachin who believes the nation still needs him and his devotees keep goading their God to go on! It would have been most fitting were he to quit the day India won the World Cup.
 

In politics we have Manmohan Singh. He could have gone on a high had he refused to continue post 2009 elections! Now Advani is willing to make a fool of himself for the second time. Earlier Nehru should have stuck to his stand that he wanted to quit in 1957 he was persuaded by the party, he did not quit in ’62 when he had another chance and died a broken man! In films look at the pathetic effort made by Madhuri Dixit to find past glory! So it is in our culture to do this. Most comebacks end in disaster! Here is wishing NRN luck!
 

(Prof Agashe teaches at Symbiosis and other management schools in Pune).

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COMMENTS

Sathish Chandran

4 years ago

Nice observation Prof. Anil Agashe. Seriously wish NRN good luck because Infosys is not just another company, it is India's pride.

Govind

4 years ago

Wow, nice angle of looking at the current situation in Corporate as well as Politics. Keep us feeding, Indeed nice article

huma arora

4 years ago

terrific and meticulously written article.. keen observation

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