Gopinath Sells 1% In Kingfisher Airlines To Raise Funds For Cargo Venture : Captain GR Gopinath has sold nearly 1% stake in Kingfisher Airlines in the last few days. He has sold stake to raise funds for his cargo business venture called Deccan Express Logistics. Deccan Express Logistics was in incubation for the last three years. Captain Gopinath will invest $25 million on it and the company has already leased 100 acres of land from the Maharashtra government in Nagpur for 60 years.  Captain Gopinath told CNBC TV 18 that they are in process of putting together the logistics, IT and warehousing departments. The company has recruited 100 people, mostly former FedEx, UPS and DHL employees. Jude Fonseka (former MD - Sales of FedEx) has been appointed as the CEO of Deccan Express. He added that he is looking to expand to 95% of India's GDP and will look at the international market via the Middle East and South East Asia.The aim of the business is to provide a complete integrated end-to-end logistics solution and also to build a robust supply chain for the country.

Intel Capital Looking At Indian Wi-Max Operations Closely : Intel, the world's largest chipmaker, plans to make strategic investments in the WiMax rollouts undertaken by Indian telcos. The company is open to investing in 'one or perhaps even more' Indian operators. Intel Capital had already invested in several Indian companies that make hardware and software applications work on this technology platform and more such deals are in the pipeline

SBI Gets Nod for JV With Societe General for Custodial Services : State Bank of India said it has received Reserve Bank approval for a joint venture with Societe Generale, a large financial services group from Europe, for offering custodial and related services in the country. A release here said SBI will hold 65 per cent equity in the new company that will be set up to undertake the business, while the remaining 35 per cent will be held by Societe Generale Securities Services. The company plans to commence operations by the first quarter of 2009 after receiving licence from market regulator SEBI, the release said.

Colgate–Palmolive Sells Its Nepal Arm : Oral care company Colgate Palmolive India has transferred its shareholding in its Nepal subsidiary to Nepal-based Everest Hygiene Products, for an undisclosed amount. "All employees of Colgate-Palmolive (Nepal) would continue their employment on the existing terms and conditions under the new ownership," the company said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).

IFC Eyes 5% In GSPC Gas Co : International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of World Bank that promotes sustainable private sector investment in developing countries, is likely to pick up 5 per cent stake in GSPC Gas Company, a subsidiary of Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation (GSPC). The company may use the IFC fund to partly finance its investment of $140 million (approximately Rs 700 crore) for laying new pipelines for gas distribution in cities. GSPC Gas distributes natural gas to households and vehicles in Gujarat and plans to spend Rs 8,000 crore over the next few years to expand its network to distribute natural gas in 180 more towns of Gujarat. GSPC with 62 per cent equity, is the largest shareholder in GSPC Gas. Gujarat State Petronet (GSPL), a subsidiary of GSPC, owns another 36.5 per cent while the remaining 1.5 per cent is owned by couple of other large gas-consuming companies in Gujarat in the power and fertiliser sectors. This IFC financing of GSPC Gas is expected to initiate the process of diluting the 100 per cent government stakeholding of the company. 

Reliance Capital To Launch Islamic Funds In Malaysia : Reliance Capital Ltd, India's largest asset management house, has received approval from the Malaysian authorities to commence Islamic finance funds operations in the country. The fund would enter this nouveau riche segment based on the Shari'ah principles of investing. The firm is to start off with its offering in the next 6-8 months.

RBI To Allow 49% FDI in Credit Information Biz : RBI has announced it will now consider letting through Foreign Direct Investment of upto 49 percent in credit information bureaus. The central bank investor should be a company with a well established track record and no shareholder in the company should hold voting rights exceeding 10 percent. Credit information bureaus are institutions that collect and maintain a database of frauds and defaults to help banks analyse the risk appetite of individuals applying for loans and credit cards.

Govt And RBI To Open A Rs75,000 Crore Refinance Window : The government and Reserve Bank of India (RBI) are jointly working on developing a massive Rs 75,000 crore refinance window to help infrastructure, housing and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) raise capital through concessional funds by leveraging the country's foreign exchange reserves. The refinancing would be provided through India Infrastructure Finance Company Ltd (IIFCL), National Housing Bank (NHB) and Small Industrial Development Board of India (SIDBI). These institutions would receive funds at 7 to 9 per cent to enable banks to earn a decent spread but cap lending between 10 and 11 per cent, which is lower than the current prime lending rates of 13 to 17 per cent. This move is expected to increase lending by banks to sectors that are considered vital to economic growth. Under this model, RBI will purchase bonds worth $10 billion from IIFCL's London subsidiary at a coupon rate of 2.5 per cent, which is equivalent to what it earns on its reserves.

Suzlon Moves Into Solar Power : Suzlon said it has chosen two sites in India for its first investment into solar power. Suzlon, the fourth-largest maker of wind turbines in the world, plans to build solar power plants in Gujarat and Rajasthan. The company did not release other details about the projects but cited the market opportunity in wind and solar for making the move to solar energy.

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