RBS appoints Leena Gidwani as market head for Western India

In her new position, Ms Gidwani will be responsible for business development and brand positioning

The Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) has appointed Leena Gidwani as market head, Western Region, for its private banking business in India, reports PTI.

Ms Gidwani will be based in Mumbai, overseeing a team of 15 staff comprising private bankers and client-relationship associates, a statement issued by the Bank here said.

She will be responsible for driving business development, delivering the strategic growth plan and positioning the brand in the market. She will report to Shiv Gupta, head of RBS private banking business in India, it further said.

“Leena’s appointment is an important step forward for the business as we implement our strategic plan in India with a view to significantly growing our staff base and assets under management (AUM) over the next four to five years,” Mr Gupta said.

"The western region, with Leena's stewardship, will feature heavily in our plans to grow overall country AUM by 30% over this period,” Mr Gupta said.

The western region currently accounts for 40% of overall AUM of the RBS private banking business in India, the release said.

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    Standard Chartered to float first IDRs for over Rs2,200 crore

    The Bank plans to float 220 million IDRs; looks at listing by June

    In what would be the first case of an MNC raising capital from India, UK’s Standard Chartered has announced that it would float Indian Depository Receipts (IDRs) to mop up over $500 million (Rs 2,250 crore) and list the same on bourses by June.

    Seeking to float 220 million IDRs, the UK-based banking major moved market regulator SEBI for approval of the scheme, guidelines for which were cleared way back in 2004. The bank had earlier said that the issue size could be between $500 million and $750 million.

    “We have a strong presence in India. We are the oldest foreign bank in the country. We have good business and IDR is to give opportunity to Indian investors to participate in the global story,” Standard Chartered PLC's CEO (India and South Asia) Neeraj Swaroop told PTI immediately after filing for the IDR with SEBI.

    Standard Chartered began its Indian operations in April 1858 in Calcutta (now Kolkata).

    Asked about the pricing of the instrument, he said that at present Standard Chartered PLC was being traded at £17 a share but “we have not decided on the conversion rate.”

    While the banking major is looking at mopping up at least $500 million, it has not fixed any upper limit, Mr Swaroop said, adding that he would also want the employees to participate in the issue.

    The proceeds would be repatriated to the global entity for normal business activities and there was no shortage of capital adequacy.

    “We have not faced any shortage of capital in the past. We will not face (the same in the future). India can get capital if required,” he said.

    He, however, said that no decision had been taken for fixing a quota for employees and it would be decided when the issue nears completion and would depend on a host of issues like retail response.

    Asserting that India, which contributes to 20% of global profits, would continue to be the focus area, he said that this year the bank would enter a host of specialised corporate equity services to assist IPOs, brokerage and equity solutions to the Indian industry.

    He said that the organisation had posted a significant $1-billion profit in 2009 and added that the outlook was good.

    Mr Swaroop, however, refrained from giving any numbers for the future but pointed out that profits for the last five years had been growing at an average of 41%, while income was rising at an average of 30%.
    “The principal rationale for listing is brand-building and business development in India, the Bank’s second largest market. It accounts for 20.5% of group profits,” the bank said in a statement.

    The Bank has over 94 branches in 37 cities in the country. Its retail customer base stands at around 20 lakh.

    Investment bankers including Goldman Sachs, UBS, JM, SBI Capital and DSP Merrill Lynch advised Standard Chartered on the said issue.

    In November last year, Standard Chartered global CEO Peter Sands said that the proposed IDR issue would enhance the lenders’ commitment to the local market.

    The Bank has operations in an array of verticals, including consumer and wholesale banking, private banking and SME banking.

    IDRs work like Global Depository Receipts or American Depository Receipts—foreign-listed securities against underlying equity shares of Indian companies—through which Indian companies raise resources overseas.

    SEBI guidelines for IDR issues permit only the companies listed in their domestic markets for at least three years and have been profitable for three of the preceding five years.

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    Boeing eyes collaboration with ISRO

    Since the Indian space agency already has a tie-up with Europe’s EADS Astrium, both entities will have to explore new areas of possible future business ventures

    Boeing has evinced interest in collaborating with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in the area of communication satellites, and the two entities are exploring joint opportunities, a senior ISRO official has said, reports PTI.

    But the future possible cooperation with Boeing is unlikely in the field of joint-building of communication satellites as the Indian space agency already has a tie-up in this segment with EADS Astrium, managing director of Antrix Corporation, ISRO’s commercial arm, K R Sridhara Murthi indicated.

    “They (Boeing) said that they are interested in having collaboration with us in the field of communication satellites. But we (ISRO) already have an alliance with the Europeans (EADS Astrium),” he said.

    “Maybe ISRO and Boeing will have to explore some new areas of business. We need to do a lot of homework before we can arrive at collaborative level. Still, it’s (a) very preliminary type of exchange,” Mr Murthi told PTI.

    ISRO, meanwhile, is expanding its alliance with Astrium, with which it has an agreement to jointly offer communication satellites with a launch mass of two tonnes to three tonnes for the international market.

    “We are trying to cooperate in other areas (in addition to communication satellites) such as Earth observations. So, we have built along with them (Astrium) some multi-sensor ground systems for the USA and we are also trying to cooperate in other areas and explore what other type of cooperation we can do in the field of Earth observations,” he said.

    Antrix, which markets ISRO-developed space products and services, currently has an order pipeline of Rs3,000 crore (in all types of business put together).

    The company expects to close the current fiscal (2009-10) with a revenue of Rs1,000 crore, more or less the same as the previous fiscal, reflecting a market environment impacted by the global slowdown.

    Mr Murthi said that ISRO would launch the first Algerian remote sensing satellite, built by Astrium, on board India's PSLV as a co-passenger with Cartosat-2B on 5th May. This satellite weighs around 150 kg.

    ISRO already has some business relationship with Algeria, which is receiving data from Indian satellites through the station built by the former.

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    shadi Katyal

    1 decade ago

    Why the negativity? Do anyone think that Boeing is not aware fof ISRO tie up with EADS.
    I for one never understood such articles or is it the beaurucracy and red tape we talking.
    Investigate and show some interest and who knows what else might fall in our lap.

    We are listening!

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