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Great Offshore to buy SeaDragon for $1.4 bn

Great Offshore to buy SeaDragon for $1.4 bn
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First Published: Mon, May 12 2008. 12 37 AM IST
Updated: Mon, May 12 2008. 12 37 AM IST
Mumbai: Offshore service firm Great Offshore Ltd is set to acquire Cayman Islands-based SeaDragon Offshore in a $1.4 billion (Rs5,796 crore) deal that would give the Indian company rigs that can be deployed for ultra deep water discovery.
The due diligence is moving rapidly, Great Offshore managing director Vijay K. Sheth said, but refused to confirm the name of the company. “We hope to close the deal in one or two months,” he said.
SeaDragon Offshore chairman Stephen Baird said, “We both are okay with the deal. But are waiting for our bankers nod to seal the deal.” In January, Great Offshore had informed the Bombay Stock Exchange that it would be buying a firm for $1 .4 billion.
Swift fastest-selling car by 3-year sales: official
New Delhi: The country’s largest car maker, Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, has crossed a new milestone in sales for its ‘Swift” cars—200,000 units—with it becoming one of the fastest selling models in India since its launch three years ago. “Maruti Swift has attained new benchmarks very swiftly. It has emerged as the fastest-selling car in India by completing the two-lakh unit sales mark in less than 36 months,” a company official said.
The hatchback in petrol variant was launched on 25 May 2005. At present, 60% of the model produced are diesel variant.
John Elkann to become Fiat’s new czar
Milan: The Agnelli dynasty will crown the new czar of the Fiat automotive empire on Tuesday when John Elkann, scion of the family known as “Italy’s Kennedys,” takes over at the tender age of 32.
Already vice-chairman of Fiat SpA, Elkann will replace 83-year-old Gianluigi Gabetti, a close associate of the Agnelli clan, at the head of IFIL, the holding company that manages a portfolio worth some €8 billion (Rs51,120 crore).
The iconic industrial family’s holdings include a 30% stake in Fiat, 2.4% in the banking group Intesa Sanpaolo, and 62% in the Turin football team Juventus.
The holding company is indirectly held by the “lockbox” Giovanni Agnelli and C, which will remain Gabetti’s province.
Retail to consolidate in medium term: analyst
Kolkata: Growing retail industry in India would see a phase of consolidation in the medium term while ill-planned malls were likely to go out of business, an official of real estate management company Jones Lang LaSalle Meghraj (JLLM) said.
“There is a huge potential for the retail sector in the country since India is a large economy and 97% of the country’s retail trade is still in the unorganized sector,” JLLM managing director (Kolkata market) Abhijit Das said. With the country’s economy projected to grow at a rate of 9% per annum, there would be a gradual shift of the retail business from unorganized to organized sector, he said.
In spite of this, retail sector would see a phase of consolidation in the medium term. According to Das, malls which are ill-planned and of less than average standards would be under severe pressure. Companies such as Reliance Retail Ltd and Future Group’s Big Bazaar are expanding their network in the country while new players are entering the market, he said.
Arjun Singh seeks peace by raising loyalty card
New delhi: Under fierce attack from the party, senior Congress leader Arjun Singh on Sunday sought to buy peace with the party leadership, utilizing the loyalty card and dismissing the controversies that surrounded him recently as “needless and irrelevant”.
“This is a closed chapter as far as I am concerned,” the human resource development minister said in a statement a day after his remarks on loyalty and internal democracy in the party created a storm and saw party chief Sonia Gandhi giving him a cold shoulder.
Singh said he was “pained at the needless and irrelevant controversies” that are sought to be raised on the book on him published by Kanhaiya Lal Nandan and presented to President Pratibha Patil two days ago.
Vodafone examining £20 bn MTN bid: report
London: The world’s largest mobile phone operator by revenue, Vodafone Group Plc., is understood to be examining a £20 billion (Rs1.6 trillion) bid for South African firm MTN Group Ltd, which is discussing a possible takeover deal from India’s Bharti Airtel Ltd, the ‘Sunday Times’ reported.
However a Vodafone spokesperson told Reuters that the group has no intention of pursuing a bid for MTN.
Vodafone “chief executive Arun Sarin has instructed his in-house acquisition team, led by former UBS banker Warren Finegold, to examine options to buy MTN,” the ‘Sunday Times’ said in an article published in its online edition.
Last week, Sunil Mittal-led Bharti and MTN said they have initiated “exploratory discussions” for a possible deal.
RCom $400 mn NMS deal to Alcatel-Lucent
New Delhi: Telecom infrastructure company Alcatel-Lucent has bagged an outsourcing contract for network managed services (NMS) from Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group firm Reliance Communications Ltd (RCom) for both CDMA and GSM networks.
“The deal is estimated at over $400 million,” an RCom official familiar with the development said, adding the deal was signed on Saturday. Under the agreement, Alcatel-Lucent and RCom would form a joint venture company and the network management services would be outsourced to that firm.
RCom, which has been given GSM licence under the dual technology clause, is likely to start GSM-based mobile services by the end of the current fiscal year. RCom would be the only operator in the country offering mobile services in both CDMA and GSM platforms.
“We are aiming to set up nationwide GSM and CDMA network by fiscal end, which will cover 23,000 towns and 600,000 villages serving 97% of the Indian population,” RCom president S.P. Shukla had recently said.
China unveils company to build jumbo aircraft
Beijing: China on Sunday set up a homegrown company to make jumbo passenger aircraft to challenge the dominance of Airbus SAS and Boeing Co., in the market for aircraft with more than 150 seats.
Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China Ltd (CACC) was unveiled with a registered capital of 19 billion Yuan (Rs11,178 crore)), with state-owned assets supervision and administration commission alone investing 6 billion Yuan, making it the biggest shareholder in the outfit.
The company would be responsible for researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing the homegrown large passenger aircraft, official Xinhua news agency said.
China’s two aircraft makers, China Aviation Industry Corp. 1 (AVIC 1) and China Aviation Industry Corp. II (AVIC II), are also shareholders in the new company.
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First Published: Mon, May 12 2008. 12 37 AM IST