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No beating about the bush.
Dubious trading in the shares of Concurrent India, a BSE listed company, is leading to wild fluctuations in its volumes and price
There is something amiss in the share-trading of Mumbai-based Concurrent (India) Infrastructure Ltd. After Moneylife published news about the wrong regulatory filings by the company to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), volumes of Concurrent shares rose by a whopping 190% to 7,35,425 shares on Monday from last week's average volumes of 2,53,808 shares per day. BSE, at the first level of regulation, has refused to comment on our queries regarding the Concurrent trading.
Shares of Concurrent India, earlier known as Kushagra Software Ltd, are being pushed up by a cabal of investors who may be in alliance with insiders. Last week, Moneylife reported on how Concurrent had fooled investors with a false announcement on its alleged plans with Sikkim Power Project (see: http://www.moneylife.in/article/8/6290.html). A simple cross-checking of the regulatory filing submitted by Concurrent to the BSE, along with a reading of the sites of a bunch of investors led by one self-styled stock guru Arun K Mukherjee (http://www.arunthestocksguru.com/) suggests rampant manipulation in the share price.
Moneylife also discovered that comments posted on our earlier story on our website by some 'readers' may have been written by some employees of Concurrent using their office network.
For example, the same Mr Mukherjee in his blog posted on 8 February 2010 (http://www.arunthestocksguru.com/2010/02/concurrent-india-infrastructure.html) talks about Concurrent and the company's future projects at great length. He even claims that Concurrent's chief executive officer had called him and fixed up an appointment! According to the blog entry, after their dialogue, Mr Mukherjee became a 'proud' shareholder of the company and was hoping to be with it for the next three-four years.
The so-called stock guru also offers information that is not known to other investors, in a gross violation of the listing norms. In the same blog entry of 8th February, Mr Mukherjee wrote about Concurrent's acquisition of Kazi Aviation for no consideration, which was not known to other investors. Concurrent announced the deal only on 12 March 2010, more than a month after Mr Mukherjee published his blog entry. In the same breadth, he speaks about the bulk-selling deals undertaken by Absolute Leasing and Finance Pvt Ltd. He says (quote not corrected for grammar or punctuation), "You may notice Concurrent being in bulk deals for huge selling from a particular company named ABSOLUTE LEASING & FINANCE PVT LTD. It's a company of MR GK Agarwal who was the erstwhile owner of Kushagra, he was told to exit the company and thus he offloaded all his 15 lakh odd shares in the market. Weaker hands gone out and I and my group bought the most of his quantity."
Speaking about Concurrent's CEO K Sudhir Babu, Mr Mukherjee says (message reproduced verbatim), "Sudhir is a very influential and visionary guy with huge powerful contacts. This guy works from morning 5 to 12.30 at night. To make the board stronger he is making a Padma Shri guy joining the board."
After publishing the news about Concurrent and the Sikkim Power Project, Moneylife received a few mails and comments from some investors. These investors, including Mr Mukherjee, responsible for spiking Concurrent's share price have openly admitted their involvement. Their confidence may have arisen due to inaction by the authorities against such manipulation in the past.
An email sent to us by one Chandra Deo from Mangalore in Karnataka, speaks about the volume surge and share price movement of Concurrent. Mr Deo said, "As a matter of fact, the same stock which was moving down on lower circuits before the article appeared on your website has today registered huge volumes, approximately 300% more than the average traded quantity/day in last 2 weeks (7.35 lakh versus 2.44 lakh) as per BSE statistics IN SPITE OF STRAIGHT AWAY HITTING THE LOWER CIRCUIT!".
However, Concurrent share volumes have been even higher due to the false news about the Sikkim Power Project. During June, Concurrent's average share volumes fell to 34.3 lakh shares from 51.3 lakh shares recorded in May 2010, as per the data available on the BSE site. Concurrent share volumes in June are almost half compared with the 69.4 lakh shares recorded just four months ago, in February 2010.
The movement of Concurrent's share price, however, is another story. Its share closed at Rs11.94 in January 2010. During the past six months, Concurrent's shares hit an average closing high of Rs32.85 in May and have been falling since then.
On Tuesday, Concurrent hit the lower circuit limit of Rs28.00 preventing the shares from falling further. Concurrent shares closed 4.9% down to Rs28 while the benchmark Sensex ended the day 0.7% down at 17,749 points.
(More about the financial 'health' of Concurrent, tomorrow)
According to the Voice&Data100 Indian Telecom Survey, Indian brands strengthened their presence in the domestic handset market in 2009-10, growing at the expense of multinationals like Nokia and Samsung
Home-grown handset makers like Spice, Micromax and Karbonn captured 14% of the mobile phone market in India in FY 2009-10, thanks to the burgeoning growth in the cellular telephony. These manufacturers had just 3%-4% per cent market share in the previous fiscal, reports PTI.
According to the Voice&Data100 Indian Telecom Survey, these Indian brands strengthened their presence in the domestic handset market in 2009-10, growing at the expense of multinationals like Nokia and Samsung.
While Micromax had a 4.1% market share by revenue, Spice and Karbonn had a share of 3.9% and 3% in FY 2009-10, respectively.
Lava had a share of 1.1%, Lemon 1% and Max had a 0.9% share, it added.
The Voice&Data100 annual survey on handsets is based on the revenue of telecom equipment suppliers, including GSM and CDMA handset vendors.
According to the study, even though Finnish company Nokia remained the market leader, its share came down to 52.2% from 64% last year.
Samsung's market share increased to 17.4% this year from 10% last year, while LG had a share of 5.9% as against 4.5% last year.
"Low prices for perceived high-end features. You get all-QWERTY Blackberry lookalikes complete with trackball, and even dual-SIM phones, for Rs5,000," Voice&Data chief editor Prasanto K Roy said.
"We saw demand rising for dual-SIM phones last year, but the market leaders had few offerings there. And while Nokia has many low-cost models, they are relatively sparse on features," he added.
However, the low-cost handsets may fall short on applications, functionality, user interface and experience, and, often, quality of construction, solidity and robustness, he added.
The mobile handset market grew 4.2% by revenue during FY 2009-10 compared to 7.9% in 2008-09.
Around 108 million mobile phones were sold in the country during 2009-10, adding up to Rs27,000 crore sales, up from Rs25,910 crore the previous year.
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