New Delhi: The government on Thursday raised ad rates paid by its ad agency, the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity, or DAVP, by 24%, with retroactive effect from 1 September. The publishing industry has been demanding a rate hike since April this year and in early August, information and broadcasting minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi said the ministry was working on hiking ad rates.
His announcement followed a representation by an Indian Newspaper Society delegation, which demanded a 50% hike in ad rates. All government agencies and ministries, with some exceptions, route their advertisements through DAVP, which enjoys low ad rates. For large newspapers such as ‘The Times of India’ or the ‘Hindustan Times’, DAVP ads account for about 10-15% of ad volumes and 8-10% of ad revenues. “The ministry had said it would consider a 30% hike, but they have made only a 24% hike,” said Bahubali S. Shah, chairman of Gujarat Samachar Group and the former president of the Indian Newspaper Society.
“We welcome it nevertheless, it comes at a time the industry is passing through a very difficult phase due to high newsprint prices,” Shah said.
— Staff Writer
Application money norms for rights issues
Mumbai: Capital market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India, or Sebi, on Thursday introduced the new concept of “application supported by blocked amount”, or Asba, for rights issues. Under this, the application money for rights issues will remain in the shareholder’s bank account until the shares are allotted.
The market regulator has decided to introduce Asba on a pilot basis in the rights issue of Tata Motors Ltd and Sadhana Nitro Chem Ltd. Both these issues will open for subscription on 29 September.
Unlike the initial public offers where Asba is available only for retail investors, all investors, including institutions, can avail of this facility in right issues.
Asba will also help reduce the time frame for the entire rights issue process. Sebi had cut the timeframe for rights issues—from 109 days to 43 days, last month, to reduce the exposure of both firms as well as investors to high market volatility.
— Khushboo Narayan
1.4% of Tata Steel’s equity changes hands
Mumbai:Tata Steel Ltd had 1.4% of its equity changing hands in two transactions. About 5 million shares were traded at Rs488 a piece at 9.55am, and another 5 million shares were traded at Rs485 at 9.57am on Thursday. The buyers and sellers weren’t immediately known.
The shares climbed 0.05% to Rs486.3 at 10.49am, after earlier rising as much as 2.9%. It closed 0.13% down at 485.05 on Thursday.
INX denies reports of stake sale to Balaji
New Delhi: INX Media Pvt. Ltd, broadcaster of channels such as 9X, 9XM and NewsX, has denied the media report regarding its stake sale to television content producer Balaji Telefilms Ltd. The report appeared in ‘The Economic Times’ on 25 September. In a statement issued on Thursday, INX Media said the report was “completely untrue and misleading”. In a letter sent to the editor of the newspaper the company said it has never conducted talks with Balaji for any kind of stake sale and asked the paper to issue a correction.
“At no point has INX had any conversations with Balaji Telefilms on investment either in or from Balaji Telefilms,” INX Media founder and chief executive officer Indrani Mukerjea said in the letter.
— Staff Writer
RIL appoints Neucom as consultant
New Delhi: Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) said it has appointed Neucom Consulting Pvt. Ltd as its communications consultant. Neucom is a subsidiary of Vaishnavi Corporate Communications. In a statement, RIL said the new agency will work closely with the group headquarters as well as all its subsidiaries.
— Staff Writer
Metro waits for Sunday meet before taking call
Kolkata: Metro Cash and Carry India Pvt Ltd, a subsidiary of German wholesaler Metro AG, will wait till Sunday’s meeting of Left Front partners before taking a call on whether or not to pull the plug on its 100,000 sq. ft outlet in Kolkata. In that meeting, the ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist), or CPM, and its allies will jointly decide whether or not to allow Metro to trade in farm products. Though its Kolkata outlet is ready, it hasn’t been launched as yet because Metro has not obtained the licence from the West Bengal government to trade in fresh fruits and vegetables.
The licence had been issued to Metro in 2005, but last year it wasn’t renewed by the state’s agriculture department, which is controlled by the Forward Bloc party.
— Staff Reporter