Companies & Sectors
Vijay Mallya writes to employees, lists out revival plan

Mallya urged the employees to be careful in their interaction with the media, alleging “negative reporting” by media on the carrier (Kingfisher Airlines)

Mumbai: With employees threatening to move court for closure of the company, Kingfisher Airlines chairman Vijay Mallya finally broke his silence through a letter to his employees saying the management is making every effort to restart operations, reports PTI.

 

At the same time, Mallya urged the employees to be careful in their interaction with the media, alleging “negative reporting” by media on the carrier.

 

The employees of the grounded Kingfisher Airlines, who have not been paid for eight months now, had threatened to file a winding up petition in the court under the Companies Act, if the management did not share its revival plan with them.

 

“We have submitted a detailed restart plan to the DGCA which is in two parts. The first part deals with a limited re-start utilising seven aircraft ramping up to 21 aircraft in four months. The second part is a full scale rehabilitation of our airline growing to 57 aircraft within 12 months of recapitalisation,” Mallya informed his employees in the letter.

 

The letter, however, did not mention anything about the payment schedule of dues of the employees, but it said that “both plans contain detailed information on key assumptions and funding requirements, including payment of outstanding salaries to employees.”

 

The airline has not paid to its employees since May last year.

 

Appealing the employees to be ‘careful’ in their interaction with media, Mallya alleged in the letter that the media has continued their negative reporting on Kingfisher.

 

Kingfisher management had promised the employees that their dues till June will be paid by December last year.

 

However, it failed to meet the deadline. The commitment to the employees had come following a two-month strike by its engineers and pilots over non-payment of dues.

 

Earlier Kingfisher had said that while the March salary would be paid within 24 hours, the April salary would be paid by 31st October, May dues before Diwali in mid-November and June salary by December end. The salary dues from July to September would be paid by March next year after recapitalisation of the airline.

 

Kingfisher, whose flying license (Scheduled Operator’s Permit), expired on 31st December last year, had last month submitted a revival plan to the regulator DGCA. The DGCA, however, did not accept it and asked to furnish additional details.

 

Kingfisher is burdened with a loss of Rs8,000 crore and a debt burden of another over Rs7,524 crore, a large part of that has not been serviced since January.

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India pips Brazil, Russia to become 4th largest market for Sony

The Indian operations’ revenue for Sony Corp for 2011-12 was Rs6,313 crore compared to Rs5,446 crore in the previous fiscal. The company is expecting 30%-40% growth in this fiscal
 

Las Vegas: Japanese consumer electronics giant Sony said its Indian operations have emerged as its fourth largest globally, overtaking businesses in Brazil and Russia by the end of December quarter this fiscal, reports PTI.

 

The sluggish demand in developed nations has helped the company’s growing subsidiary Sony India, which has clocked revenue of over Rs6,000 crore during April-December period in 2012-13, to improve its position in global ranking.

 

“The Indian operations have become the number four in global ranking. We have overtaken Brazil and Russia, which were ahead of us in last fiscal,” Sony India managing director Kenichiro Hibi told reporters.

 

The existing top three positions are held by the US, China and Japan, he said without sharing details.

 

“We have almost touched last year’s revenue... We are completely on our track to treble our turnover to Rs20,000 crore by 2015,” Hibi said.

 

The Indian operations’ revenue for 2011-12 was Rs6,313 crore compared to Rs5,446 crore in the previous fiscal. The company is expecting 30%-40% growth in this fiscal.

 

Sony India’s achievement comes at a time when its parent is reporting losses due to unfavourable foreign exchange rates, impact of tsunami in Japan, floods in Thailand and adverse market sentiments in developed countries.

 

Sony Corporation reported 9.58% fall in its sales for the year ending 31 March 2012, at 6.49 trillion yen. Its net loss also widened to 456.7 billion yen in the year.

 

For the quarter ending 30 September 2012, the Japanese major incurred a net loss of 15.5 billion yen. Its sales stood at 1,604.7 billion yen.

 

Asked about the growth driver for Sony India, Hibi said: “Bravia, Vaio and Xperia are the major contributors to our rise. These three have contributed 70% of our revenue.”

 

He further said the Indian operations are contributing 5%-10% of Sony Corp's global revenue at present and it “has the potential to grow”.

 

When asked if Sony India will be able to move further in the ranking, Hibi said: “The gap between Japan and India is very big, but the growth rate in India is higher than that of the parent... The headquarters are focussing more on India and it is a very strategic market.”

 

To expand its presence further, the company is looking to customise products more to meet Indian customers' demand, he added.

 

The company will also introduce more “affordable and entry-level products, mostly TV sets, but with certain premiumness” in India during next year.

 

Hibi, however, said the company does not have any plan to set up an assembly line in India at present despite “demand for our products are rising”.

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Car sales skid in December, auto industry seeks cut in excise duty

To boost the industry sentiment and growth, SIAM demanded a reduction in excise duty and continuation of all benefits of the Auto Mission Plan (AMP) for another 10 years till 2026

New Delhi: Passenger car sales in the country declined by 12.5% in December last year, the steepest fall in the last four months, due to high interest rates, rising fuel prices and overall slowdown in economic growth, reports PTI.

 

According to the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), domestic car sales in December last year was 1,41,083 units, 12.5% lower that 1,61,247 units sold in the same month in 2011.

 

This is the biggest drop since August, 2012 when sales had declined by 18.5%.

 

“Sentiments have not been improved. Interest rates are still high. Even fuel prices remain on higher side and the economy is down,” SIAM president S Sandilya said.

 

To boost the industry sentiment and growth, SIAM demanded a reduction in excise duty and continuation of all benefits of the Auto Mission Plan (AMP) for another 10 years till 2026.

 

“Going by the current trends, we do not think industry will be able to recover in the fourth quarter unless the government provides support,” he said.

 

He said the excise duty on automobiles, which was increased in the last year’s Budget, needs to be reduced, particularly on commercial vehicles.

 

Sandilya asked for early implementation of GSA as the move would help in boost the sector’s growth.

 

“Early introduction of CST will help in boosting the industry's growth. SIAM also requests to look into the possibility of extending AMP till 2026 to further nurture the sector,” he told reporters.

 

The total vehicles sales across categories, however, registered an increase of 2.77% at 14,51,517 units last month as against 14,12,372 units in December 2011.

 

The industry body has revised its sales forecast for passenger cars this fiscal to 0%-1% as against an earlier forecast of 1%-3%.

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