Companies & Sectors
SpiceJet: Marans, Kal Airways give control to co-founder Ajay Singh

SpiceJet co-founder Ajay Singh, who holds 4.5% stake has been given control of the ailing carrier by promoters Maran and Kal Airways

 

Beleaguered budget carrier SpiceJet on Thursday said that it decided to transfer ownership, management and control of the company back to its co-founder Ajay Singh from Sun Group chairman Kalanithi Maran and Kal Airways.
 
SpiceJet in a statement, said: "The Board has further directed the company to take further steps to implement and undertake all necessary steps including to make the appropriate application before the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Government of India for seeking approval of the ‘Scheme of Reconstruction and Revival for the takeover of ownership, management and control of SpiceJet Ltd’.
 
Maran had acquired SpiceJet for close to Rs750 crore in 2010. However, the carrier suffered losses and landed in debt due to cash crunch.
 
Promoters, Maran and Kal Airways hold 53.48% stake, while Ajay Singh hold 4.5% in SpiceJet. Retail investors hold 45.69% in the company that has a total market value of Rs1,000 crore. Major public shareholders in SpiceJet, includes Tata group unit Ewart Investments (1.79%) and Kalpana Singh (1.41%). 
 
SpiceJet closed Thursday 3% higher at Rs18.65 on the BSE, while the 30-share Sensex ended the day 2.7% up at 28,075.
 

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Global markets swing into turmoil as Swiss lets franc soar

Over $98 billion was wiped off the value of Swiss stocks, their biggest daily fall in 26 years, while the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 slumped 2% and Wall Street futures turned negative after the SNB scrapped its three-year old peg of 1.20 Swiss francs per euro

 

Global markets were thrown into turmoil on Thursday as a shock move by Switzerland to abandon its more than three-year-old cap on the franc sent the currency soaring and Europe's shares and bond yields tumbling, says a report from Reuters.
 
The Swiss National Bank (SNB) stunned markets when it scrapped its three-year-old peg of 1.20 Swiss francs per euro. The central bank also cut its main interest rate to -0.75%—a move further into negative territory. 
 
In a chaotic few minutes after the central bank's announcement, the Swiss franc soared by almost 30% in value against the euro. 
 
Over 100 billion francs ($98 billion) was wiped off the value of Swiss stocks, their biggest daily fall in 26 years, while the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 slumped 2% and Wall Street futures turned negative, says the report.
 
The move, however hit European equity markets hard, with the Swiss benchmark stock index falling by more than 13%. 
 
According to a report from MarketWatch, despite the plunge in Switzerland's stock market, the US-listed shares of some high-profile Swiss companies were actually rising in premarket trade Thursday as the Swiss franc soared. 
 

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Lack of realistic financial model leading to paid news, says Jaitley

According to the I&B Minister, if the financial model of media is not a realistic model, then imperfections will enter and these imperfections will lead to aberrations like paid news

 

Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday said aberrations like ‘paid news’ are likely to creep in when news organisations do not have “realistic” financial models. 
 
“One of the worries is that the financial model for all (news) organisations must be a realistic model. If the financial model is not a realistic model, then imperfections will enter. And these imperfections will lead to aberrations. Paid news is one such aberration,” Jaitley said during the BES EXPO-2015- 21st International Conference and Exhibition on Terrestrial and Satellite Broadcasting, in New Delhi.
 
Articulating his views on the media scene Jaitley said, the definition of news and the behaviour of consumer have changed with technological advancement and “something that camera cannot capture is hardly news these days“.
 
Paid news has been a concern about which even the Election Commission has been looking at ways to deal with. At the same time, the minister made it clear that media censorship in the current age was not possible. 
 
“Fortunately, there are very few dictatorships in the world. But even if there were, censorship, because of technology itself would be an impossibility,” he said.
 
Jaitley, who also holds Finance Ministry portfolio, said that in this age of competition and to gain more eyeballs, it may seem that quality is being compromised. However, he added that he had faith that in the long run, the best will succeed.
 
He said the rapid advances of technology in broadcasting sector have brought along their own challenges and it is difficult to predict the future horizons of this evolution.
 
With tools of information dissemination freely available, Jaitley said he had at times read his own speeches which he had never delivered.
 
In a lighter vein, he added that the “consolation” to him as the Finance Minister is that “at least one sector of manufacturing is doing well”, in an apparent reference to media sector.
 
Jaitley said social media is available to all and a correction only needs to be issued on this new media which will spread like wild fire.
 
Talking about radio sector, he said it is witnessing a revival with the FM channels leading the comeback. He also lauded the quality of All India Radio broadcasting.
 
Jaitley recalled that in 1999, when he was a minister in the Vajpayee government, enabling provisions related to broadcasting were added to the TRAI Act which was originally intended for telephony.
 
”...And that was done by virtue of a notification. We did not realise the extent of convergence that would take place which would be essential in tariff fixation and other areas,” the I&B Minister said.
 
Referring to NDA’s previous tenure under Vajpayee, he said at that time, a group had been constituted to draft or bring in a Convergence law.
 
“Then some wise people advised us that very soon you will have technology that will make this law redundant, should you at all have a convergence law,” he added.
 
Jaitley’s remarks about attempts in previous NDA regime to bring a Communications Convergence legislation, come at a time when the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) under the Communications and IT ministry is learnt to be working for the creation of similar regulatory framework.
 
According to reports, DoT has been working on the idea of establishing a single regulatory framework for multi-faceted communications, IT and multi-media.
 
Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Secretary (I&B) Bimal Julka and Chairman Prasar Bharati A Surya Prakash were also present at the event.  
 

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