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With 100 centres under its belt, Kaya has penetrated the best of Indian urban locations. And yet, it is still making losses
Marico’s experiment with services business is still not bearing fruit. Kaya clinic, its speciality skin-care business, again made losses in the December quarter. Marico has been expanding its Kaya business steadily but this has not yet added much to the bottom-line. It opened the 100th Kaya clinic in Guwahati recently, with its services now spanning 27 cities in India and nine cities in the Middle East.
Having penetrated 100 cities, Kaya may have reached a saturation level in India. If so, it is worrying that it continues to lose money heavily. During Q3FY10, Kaya’s skin-care turnover grew by just 10% to Rs44 crore over Q3FY09.
However, this meant a sequential decline of about 9% over the turnover achieved during Q2FY10. The Kaya skin-care business incurred a loss of Rs 3.7 crore during Q3FY10. Marico argues that this business has been impacted by the overall economic downturn, given the discretionary nature of consumer spending on skin care. However, this does not ring true, since there was no slowdown in sales in the December quarter.
Meanwhile, Marico’s overall operating margin has risen to 16% from 15% in the same quarter last year. This was mainly due to a decline in the input commodity prices. The price of copra, which accounts for about 40% of the company’s raw material cost, was 22% lower than in Q3FY09. Similarly, market prices of safflower oil, comprising about 13% of the company’s raw material cost, were 28% lower than in the corresponding period of the previous year.
Marico’s flagship brand, Parachute, achieved a volume growth of about 8% (in rigid packs) over Q3FY09. Parachute’s share in the coconut oil segment now stands at a healthy 45.9%.
The refined edible oils franchise of Saffola, Marico’s second flagship brand, continued to show healthy volume growth. During Q3FY10, the franchise grew by about 18%.
During the quarter, Marico’s hair-oils segment grew 10% in volume over the same period in the previous year. Marico’s basket of hair oils—including Parachute Jasmine, Nihar perfumed hair oil, Hair & Care and Shanti Badam Amla—maintained its market share at 21% during the 12 months ending December 2009.
Marico’s international business, which accounts for 23% of its turnover, grew by over 24% in Q3FY10.
During the Q3FY10 quarter, Marico managed a turnover of Rs670 crore, a growth of 8% over Q3FY09. Pre-tax profit was up 24%.
With the big-ticket acquisition of Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics, Aptech has made a significant foray into the animation and multimedia education arena
Information technology training and education major, Aptech Ltd, in which ace investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala has a major stake, has sealed a major buy-out in the animation and multimedia education space by acquiring Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics (MAAC) for Rs76 crore, reports PTI.
Speaking to reporters today, Ninad Karpe, CEO and managing director of Aptech said, "This acquisition will make us an education powerhouse, give us scale and synergy as well as a significant market-share."
Mr Karpe said that the acquisition is through the takeover of 100% equity of Maya Entertainment Ltd (MEL), the parent company of MAAC. However, the issue of shares of Aptech Ltd is subject to approval of the shareholders of Aptech Ltd.
"The deal is structured to include a cash payout as well as issue of equity shares of Aptech Ltd to the shareholders of MEL. The enterprise value is Rs76 crore and the breakdown between the cash and equity components will be finalised very soon," Mr Karpe said.
The cash will be paid from the internal accruals of the company.
"With the animation education industry poised to expand at 27% CAGR, there is an immense potential in this segment and this acquisition will help us tap this potential," Mr Karpe said.
Intuit Inc has launched a personal finance money-managing software package that will help subscribers to track spending and save money
Intuit Inc, a US-based software solutions company which develops software for the financial segment, has launched a personal finance software package for affluent Indian customers. The software, called ‘Intuit Money Manager’, keeps track of all bank accounts, plans budgets, helps to save tax and avoids late payments. Subscribers have to pay a rupee daily for this software.
Intuit claims that the software will help subscribers to handle their bank accounts, credit cards, stock portfolios and manage money. “We think that we can provide the best solution in terms of managing a customer’s money, because we have 25 years of experience of serving 40 million people across the globe to help them save and make money. Out of 40 million, 15 million of them are specifically in the personal finance domain,” said Umang Bedi, managing director, Intuit India.
The company started its operations in India four years back with a team of 19 employees. The software went live in January 2010. Before that, the company tested the software by launching a beta version for around four months. Intuit India has already invested $45 million in its Indian operations.
The company also carried out a survey with a sample size of 1,000 people between 25 years-above 40 years. “While conducting the survey, we found some common pain-points in customers while they were managing their money. People could not accurately judge their net-worth at any given point of time,” said Mr Bedi.
The survey also indicated that people in the age group of 25 years-30 years usually ended up cashless by the 28th of any month. This made them borrow and make late payments on various bills. People who were above 30 years were the ones looking to invest, and those surveyed who were above 40 years were busy tracking their returns. But this group was finding it difficult to keep track of investments and returns.
“They all had disjointed and manual means of doing it (tracking investments) either on a notebook or an Excel sheet. That was the inspiration behind Intuit Money Manager. We decided to introduce the software and then we came up with a bold vision that we wanted to be the money manager for every ‘mass affluent’ Indian,” said Mr Bedi.
The product comes with a 90-day free trial. It operates on a daily subscription model of Re1 (Rs 365 annually). But if you like the software within 15 days of trial, you can subscribe to it for Rs 249 annually.
The target audience for the software comprises individuals who earn Rs5 lakh- Rs10 lakh annually. “Our philosophy was to make the solution very affordable,” claimed Mr Bedi.