India’s two biggest private airlines could fly into regulatory trouble. At issue… their operational alliance from 2008. The Competition Commission of India or CCI has restarted its investigation, continuing last year’s search into whether the alliance would create a cartel. But that investigation stopped after Kingfisher moved the Bombay High Court. The airline argued that the CCI had no business investigating the alliance since it took place before the commission existed. But the high court wasn’t convinced and simply dismissed Kingfisher’s petition. As part of their 2008 alliance, Kingfisher and Jet cooperate in ground handling, fuel supplies and the cross selling of flight inventories.
On Tuesday Bharti Airtel announced it had completed its acquisition of Zain’s African operations. The deal is worth $10.7 billion. Chairman Sunil Mittal says the acquisition makes Bharti the fifth largest telecom firm in the world. The deal also gives the company 180 million customers along with revenues of $12.4 billion.
Bharti’s financing this acquisition by borrowing $7.5 billion at 2.25% above Libor. The Zain deal is the second largest foreign acquisition by an Indian company after Tata Steel bought Corus for $13 billion in 2007.
Europe may be in trouble, but a survey by human resources services company Manpower says Indian employers are upbeat about hiring. The survey shows net employment outlook for the period from July to September is at forty two percent. That’s some 19 percentage points higher than in the same period last year. Net employment outlook is calculated based on the difference between the number of employers who plan to hire and the number who plan to fire.