Jefferies to open banking unit in India

Jefferies to open banking unit in India

US investment bank Jefferies announced the opening of a representative office in India, which will aim to generate business out of mid-market Indian companies looking to raise capital overseas.

“Our initial focus will clearly be on investment banking," said Brian Friedman, chairman of the executive committee of Jefferies & Co Inc.

Jefferies, which generated revenue of $1.45 billion (Rs5,728 crore) in 2006, also provides trading services to its clients in the US. In India, the company initially plans to focus only on investment banking.

Jefferies has been active in India for close to three years, having completed more than 20 transactions and raised more than $1.4 billion in the global capital markets for Indian companies during the past 30 months, the company said. Some of its Indian clients include NDTV Networks Plc., Adani Enterprises Ltd, Radico Khaitan Ltd, Gitanjali Gems Ltd and Zenith Infotech.

Jefferies complements the strengths of Indian investment banks to generate business, said Edward Males, who leads the investment bank’s business in India. Jefferies extends its international reach and distribution to complement the client base of those Indian investment banks, without an international presence, he added.

Jefferies’ move to open a representative office in India has come after an increase in the number of domestic companies, riding on an average economic growth rate of 8.6% in the last four years, accessing international markets to raise capital.

The inflow of overseas capital on account of external commercial borrowings rose almost sixfold to $16 billion in 2006-07. Jefferies has served growing and mid-sized companies and their investors for 45 years.

CLB asks Bajajs to take steps to resolve dispute

New Delhi: The Company Law Board (CLB), which is hearing a case filed by sugar maker Bajaj Hindusthan Ltd’s chairman Shishir Bajaj against his elder brother Rahul Bajaj, chairman of Bajaj Auto Ltd, over division of the group assets on Thursday asked lawyers of the two sides to take steps to resolve the dispute out of court.

“Put pressure on your clients," CLB chairman S. Balasubramaniam told them. “It’s a family matter. One wants to get out and you(the other group) don’t have a problem. So it’s just a matter of working out" the agreements.

The lawyers have been asked to report on the progress of their talks on 26 November, following which the CLB will set further dates for the hearing. Ravi Krishnan

ONGC terminates contract with Sical

Mumbai: State-run Oil and Natural Gas Corp. (ONGC) has terminated the contract with Sical Logistics Ltd for manning, running, operating and repairing 17 offshore supply vessels (OSVs).

The termination comes after an offshore ship, operated by Sical Logistics, sank in July, killing five crew members. The vessel was supporting ONGC’s drilling operations in Bassein field and a satellite field offshore Mumbai Coast.

Sical has been operating OSVs for ONGC for more than 15 years and had won the operations and maintenance contract consecutively for the fifth time in June 2007. Staff Writer