While grape growers in the state have suffered destruction of crop due to unseasonal rains recently, wine producers have been troubled by lower sales over the past few years. They are hoping that the chief minister will take up the issues with the Union government at the earliest
Wine producers in Maharashtra have requested the state chief minister for assistance in matters of financing and taxation, at a time when their businesses have suffered due to untimely rains that have destroyed a large part of the grape crop this season.
Representatives of the All India Wine Producers' Association (AIWPA) met with chief minister Prithviraj Chavan recently and discussed with him problems of small and medium-size wineries and grape growers like unpaid loans, high interest rates and crop losses.
Association leaders said that the chief minister had assured them that he would take up their issues with the Centre as soon as possible to find solutions to their problems.
Jagdish Holkar, president, AIWPA, said, "The chief minister said that he recently met the union minister for food processing and discussed the issues of wineries and grape growers with him. He also said that the state and central government would look into these matters and together come up with a solution."
The Association is seeking soft loans amounting to Rs90 crore, as well as interest subvention and loan restructuring option. "The wine industry is a holding industry and interest rate of 14%-15% is unaffordable," Mr Holkar said.
Grape growers are additionally burdened as they have not received payments from wineries for the past two years, resulting in their inability to repay loans. "The farmer is at the losing end as wineries still have to pay their dues for the past two years. There are also loan dues that the farmers are finding hard to repay," said Rajesh Jadhav, secretary, AIWPA.
The grape-crushing season has begun in the Nashik and this year grape production in the region has been down to about 40% of the average annual production. A large part of the grape crop was destroyed by unseasonal rains in the area in November-December. But this is unlikely to impact wine production and supply as wineries have sizeable unsold stocks from previous years.
Mr Jadhav explained that "most of the wineries still have around 50%-60% of unsold wine lying in their tanks due to lower sales over the past three years. This years grape crop will contribute about 20%-30% of the wine production."
Mr Holkar hoped that the government would intervene quickly, to prevent dumping of wines by European producers who have good marketing and distribution channels.
Servalakshmi Paper proposes to enter capital markets with a public issue of equity shares aggregating Rs60 crore
Servalakshmi Paper Ltd, engaged in the business of manufacturing printing and writing paper and newsprint, has received SEBI nod for its proposed IPO. The company proposes to enter capital markets with a public issue of equity shares aggregating Rs60 crore through 100% book building process.
The company proposes to utilise the net proceeds of the issue for purchase of equipments for producing value added products, augmenting long term working capital requirement and to meet the preliminary & pre-operative expenses. Keynote Corporate Services Ltd is the book running lead manager to the issue and Indian Overseas Bank is the co-book running lead manager to the issue. Link Intime India Pvt Ltd is the registrar to the issue.
The company has embarked upon setting up an integrated paper mill with a capacity to produce 300 tonnes per day (TPD) i.e. 90,000 tonnes per annum, along with a 15 MW multi-fuel captive power plant at a single location. The total investment is estimated to be Rs340 crore and the entire project is set to be completed in two phases. The company has completed the Phase-I of the project and has started the commercial production on 1April 2010. The company intends to meet the requirements of Phase-II through the proposed IPO.
SBI Mutual Fund new issue closes on 4th March
SBI Funds Management has launched SBI Capital Protection Oriented Fund Series II, a five year close-ended scheme.
The investment objective of the scheme is to protect the capital on maturity of the scheme, (which for this scheme, falls on 10 March 2016) through focused investment in equity, debt and money market instruments and at the same time also seek to provide investors with opportunities for long-term growth in capital.
The new fund offer opens on 18th February and shall close on 4th March. The units would be allotted on 11th March and the net asset value (NAV) would be disclosed on a daily basis, thereafter. The new fund shall neither have any entry load nor exit load.
The minimum initial investment is Rs5,000. The fund's benchmark index is the BSE 100 Index.