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Business News/ Markets / Stock Markets/  Stocks to Watch: Reliance Industries, JSW Steel, Zee, Trent, Vodafone Idea

Stocks to Watch: Reliance Industries, JSW Steel, Zee, Trent, Vodafone Idea

Here are a few stocks likely to be in focus in today's special trading session:

The NSE has included Zee Entertainment Enterprises to its F&O ban list for March 2. (Photo: Mint)Premium
The NSE has included Zee Entertainment Enterprises to its F&O ban list for March 2. (Photo: Mint)

Reliance Industries: The consolidation of Walt Disney's and Reliance's media assets in India, valued at $8.5 billion, could trigger rigorous antitrust examination due to their combined market influence. Legal experts are raising red flags about the merged entity's robust cricket broadcasting rights portfolio and its potential effects on advertisers. The merger would position Disney-Reliance as India's top television entity with 120 channels, significantly ahead of its nearest competitor, Zee, which has 50 channels. Analysts predict that the majority stakeholder, Mukesh Ambani's Reliance, will command a 35% share of India's television viewership. India's anti-trust watchdog is expected to scrutinize the overall television landscape closely, with particular attention to cricket rights, as they assess the market share and power of the newly formed entity.

JSW Steel: The Sajjan Jindal-led steelmaker announced on Friday that it intends to invest €143 million (approximately 1,282 crore) to aid the revival of its steel mill in Piombino, Italy. The company announced in a press release that its subsidiary, JSW Steel Italy SRL, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Italian authorities for the site’s relaunch, adding that the investment will be utilized to double its current rail production capacity from 300,000 tonnes to 600,000 tonnes per annum. Sajjan Jindal, chairman of JSW Group, said, “The €143 million investment will modernize the rail mill at Piombino."

Zee Entertainment Enterprises: Culver Max, the Indian arm of Sony Group, has contested the validity of Zee Entertainment's appeal for merger enforcement at the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) in Mumbai. The NCLT is set to consider Sony's appeal and other related applications in the Sony-Zee merger case on March 12, reported CNBC-TV18. Following Sony's appeal, the Mumbai division of the NCLT has served a notice to Zee, requesting a reply. This event coincides with reports that the Sony Group has officially retracted its documents submitted to the NCLT for the proposed business merger with Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL).

Vodafone Idea: The telecom company’s plan to secure an additional 25,000 crore through debt financing is not likely to induce financial strain, as the company has significantly reduced its bank exposure by nearly 35,000 crore over the past two-and-a-half years and enhanced its operational performance, senior company sources said. The comany is relying on this funding to address its 4G coverage shortfalls and curb customer attrition. Vi’s current bank debt has fallen below 4,500 crore, which is believed to have prompted lenders to contemplate providing new loans to the telecom company.

Trent: Tata group company Trent's fashion-focussed department store Westside has plans to inaugurate 20 to 30 new stores in the upcoming fiscal year and enhance its e-commerce operations over the next year, according to a senior executive at the retailer. “Our store expansion continues at the same pace. We plan to open an equal number of stores next year as we did this year. We aim to expand our footprint in northern and northeastern India," said Shailina Parti, the Chief Operating Officer at Westside, Trent Ltd. By the end of the December quarter of FY24, the retailer had increased its reach to 227 stores across 89 cities.

Info Edge: The company's recruitment platform Naukri and real estate platform 99acres have been removed from the Google Play Store, reported Moneycontrol. These apps were not taken down from the Play Store, although the company's matrimonial service JeevanSathi remained available. This action is part of Google's initiative to remove apps from Indian developers that have not adhered to its app billing policy for a prolonged duration. Info Edge founder Sanjeev Bikchandani had previously said that they have been in compliance with Google's app policies since February 9, following an interim order by the Supreme Court in a case against Google's app billing policy.

Schneider Electric Infrastructure: The company has announced plans to invest 3,200 crore by 2026 to broaden its industrial presence in India, said Michael Lotfy Gierges, the Executive Vice President of the Global Home & Distribution Division at Schneider Electric to the Hindu businessline. Gierges further highlighted that India currently ranks as one of the company's four global hubs and its third-largest market. He emphasized Schneider Electric's commitment to enhancing customer support, expediting energy transition, and promoting electrification efforts.

Tata Motors: The company posted an 8.4% increase in its total wholesales, with 86,406 units in February, compared to 79,705 units in the same month the previous year. The company's total domestic sales rose by 9%, with 84,834 units sold last month compared to 78,006 units in the previous month. In a regulatory filing, the company reported a 19% increase in domestic sales of passenger vehicles (PV), including electric vehicles, with 51,321 units sold compared to 43,140 units in the same month last year. However, total commercial vehicle sales saw a 4% decrease, with 35,085 units sold last month compared to 36,565 units year-on-year.

Paytm: Sister company of One97 Communication, Paytm Payments Bank has been fined 5.49 crore by the Financial Intelligence Unit-India for breaching anti-money laundering regulations. On March 1, the finance ministry issued a statement saying that its Financial Intelligence Unit initiated an investigation into the payments bank following reports from law enforcement agencies about certain entities engaging in unlawful activities, including the organization and facilitation of online gambling. However, a representative from Paytm Payments Bank said that the fine is related to issues in a business segment that was phased out two years ago.

State Bank of India: The lender is contemplating the development of its own Large Language Model (LLM) to capitalize on the data it holds, as stated by a high-ranking official on Friday. The bank, which has been utilizing Artificial Intelligence (AI) for over seven years, aims to establish a scenario where it can coexist with an open-source LLM, according to its Deputy Managing Director, Nitin Chugh, who spoke at the Asia Economic Dialogue event. Chugh, who spearheads the digital banking and transformation initiatives at SBI, said, “We ought to commence the development of our own large language models that are, at the very least, domain-specific. We need to question our reliance on open-source models."

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Pranay Prakash
My experience as a Finance Journalist has involved working as a Web Producer and Sub Editor at a wire agency and business magazine, respectively, where I have curated various domain specific news pages, and later edited long-form, in-depth pieces on everything from India's corporates to the state of the economy, and various sectors. At Mint, I am involved in the editing of market copies and the curation of the live markets blog. Apart from the financial markets, my interest encompass topics related to the economy, the political economy of a growing economy, the space of policy design, and how it affects the wider economy and the decisions of corporates and consumers alike.
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Published: 02 Mar 2024, 07:33 AM IST
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