Punjab National Bank shortlists 10 firms for life insurance joint venture

Punjab National Bank proposes to buy stake in an existing life insurance company and has shortlisted 10 companies, including Reliance Life and Bharti AXA, for the strategic partnership

State-owned Punjab National Bank (PNB) said it proposes to buy stake in an existing life insurance company and has shortlisted 10 companies, including Reliance Life and Bharti AXA, for the strategic partnership.

The Bank had invited expression of interest from intending insurance companies for strategic partnership in insurance business with the bank in December last year.

PNB said it has decided to participate in the life insurance venture through "a corporate agency tie-up along with equity participation in an existing Indian life insurance company."

In a statement, the public sector lender said, "RFPs (request for proposals) have been issued to ten insurance companies...."

The companies which had expressed interest in the proposal include Reliance Life and Bharti AXA, Birla Sun Life, HDFC Life, Max New York Life and Met Life, the bank said. These companies had filed various models of business with the lender.

"The bank will finalise the partner for life insurance business based on the evaluation of the proposals submitted by these insurance companies," PNB said.

Last year, the bank decided to part ways with two of its partners in a planned life insurance joint venture. PNB bought the entire 26% stake held by Principal Financial Group and the 32% participating interest of domestic firm UK (Berger) Paints in Principal PNB Life Insurance Company Ltd.

PNB's stake in the proposed joint venture was 30%, while that of Vijaya Bank was 12%.

On Friday, PNB ended 0.71% down at Rs1,080.55 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex declined 0.02% to 18,486.45.

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Amrutanjan acquires Siva’s Soft Drinks for Rs26.20 crore

With this deal, Amrutanjan has diversified into the beverage business

Amrutanjan Health Care has forayed into the beverage business by acquiring Chennai-based Siva's Soft Drink Private Ltd for Rs26.20 crore.

Siva's Soft Drink is the manufacturer of soft drink and fruit based under the brand name "Fruitnik". "Amrutanjan Health Care has entered into an agreement with Siva's Soft Drink Pvt Ltd, Chennai to acquire their soft drink and fruit based beverages business along with the brand 'Fruitnik' for a total consideration of Rs26.20 crore," Amrutanjan said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).

Established in 1893, Amrutanjan is a strong player in the health care industry. The company currently offers various products in pain management, cough and cold care, health and home care. It exports some products to East Asia, Middle East and South East Asia.

On Friday, Amrutanjan ended 7.62% up at Rs688.15 on the BSE, while the benchmark Sensex declined 0.02% to 18,486.45.

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NTPC to hire 1,000 engineers annually for 10 years

At present, NTPC has about 25,000 employees, out of which half of the workforce are engineers

The country's largest power producer NTPC Ltd will hire 10,000 engineers in the next ten years as part of massive expansion plans.

"We need to hire 1,000 engineers every year for the next ten years to meet manpower requirements in view of our plans to expand generation capacity," NTPC director-human resources SP Singh said.

At present, the power giant has about 25,000 employees, out of which half of the workforce are engineers.

The company also aims to improve its Man-to-MW ratio-an indicator of the work force's efficiency-to as much as 0.50, which would be the best achieved so far globally, by the end of the 12th Five-Year Plan (2012-17).

In the initial phase, the company plans to take its Man-to-MW ratio to 0.64 by the end of the 11th Plan (2007-12). Currently the ratio is around 0.80.
NTPC plans to scale up its power generation capacity to 50,000MW by the end of the 11th Plan (2007-12) from its present production capability of over 33,000MW.

At present, projects totalling 16,340MW are under various stages of implementation.

Its ultimate plan is to attain a generation capacity of 75,000MW by 2017, which would be the terminal year of the 12th Five Year Plan (2012-17).

On Friday, NTPC ended 0.31% up at Rs179 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex declined 0.02% to 18,486.45.

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