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The Week in Review for 29 April 2011

The Week in Review for 29 April 2011

Wipro has made a robust showing in the fourth quarter. Profits of India’s third biggest IT company rose 14% to Rs1,375 crore. Total revenue from all operations jumped 18% to Rs8,302 crore.

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Despite the healthy earnings, Wipro’s guidance for the current quarter is downbeat. It expects quarter-on-quarter revenue growth of between –0.4% and 1.5%. Chairman Azim Premji said the ongoing reorganization of Wipro’s IT business would make the company more agile. And CEO T.K. Kurien said the company was looking to do more consulting work, which would mean larger contracts and better margins.

ICICI Bank has reported some of its best quarterly earnings in years. Profit jumped 44% to Rs1,452 crore. Net interest income went up 23% to Rs2,510 crore. While growth in loans made ICICI’s profits something of a record, it was below most expectations. CEO Chanda Kochar said a rise in yields caused a treasury loss of Rs196 crore. And expenses, including salary hikes also ate into profits. On the bright side, ICICI expects a loan growth of 20% in the current fiscal. Its net interest margin was 2.7% compared to 2.6% in the previous quarter.

The UPA has made it clear it plans to go ahead with the proposed nuclear power plant at Jaitapur in Maharashtra. But it’s also trying to allay concerns by protestors. In a statement on Tuesday the government said it would introduce a bill to set up an independent nuclear regulator. And environment minister Jairam Ramesh added that authorities would create a separate safety system for each of the reactors at the proposed plan.

India’s has narrowed down on two European combat aircraft for its much-awaited MMRCA deal. The final contenders are the Rafale, a product of France’s Dassault Aviation, and the Eurofighter Typhoon from European consortium EADS. Commercial bids for the mega deal were to expire on 28 April. But the government has asked the two short listed companies to extend their bids until 31 December. The MMRCA is a potential Rs42,000 crore defense contract. It will provide a 126 high-end combat for the Indian Air Force. The winner will also have to share some of its production of the aircraft with India’s HAL.

The four losing contenders for the MMRCA deal include two from the U-S, and there’s already concern the rejection could impact bilateral relations. On Thursday US Ambassador to India, Timothy Roemer, quit his job. Though he cited personal reasons, Roemer had privately expressed doubts about whether HAL up to the task of making parts for hi-tech combat aircraft.

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