Ashoka Buildcon Plans Rs 225-Cr IPO – Private equity-backed Ashoka Buildcon Ltd, the flagship company of the Ashoka Group, which operates many roads and bridges in India on build, operate and transfer basis (BOT), plans to raise Rs 225 crore through an initial public offer (IPO). The company plans to utilize the proceeds to repay debt and to meet working capital investments. Private equity fund IDFC invested Rs 100 crore in 2006 in the company and has a 15.6% stake. Another PE firm, IIF, has also invested Rs 215 crore in 2009 in two special purpose vehicles of the company and owns 43% in both the projects. (ET)

French Brokerage Firm Launches India Unit - Newedge, a brokerage jointly owned by French bank Societe Generale and the investment banking arm of rival Credit Agricole, launched an Indian unit to expand its client base overseas. Newedge Broker India Pvt Ltd will focus on providing financial derivatives and cash equities to institutional foreign investors, and has identified India and China as priorities for expansion. (Reuters)

Tata Teleservices To Invest $500M - Leading cellular service provider Tata Teleservices Ltd (TTSL) has launched its GSM service Tata DoCoMo in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. The company will invest close to $500 million in the two telecom circles as part of its 2 billion dollars capital expenditure over a period of two years. Japan-based NTT DoCoMo has 26% stake in TTSL and is the leading telecom operator in that country with over 50% market share. ()

AMP Capital Eyes Exit From Gujarat Pipavav - AMP Capital Investors, the Australia-based specialist investment manager, is looking for an exit from its investment in Gujarat Pipavav Port Ltd (GPPL). The exit of AMP, which had acquired less than 10% stake for about Rs 200 crore, is reportedly to take place through an IPO, for which GPPL will submit a draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) with SEBI soon. With a 54% stake, APM Terminals is the largest shareholder in Port Pipavav. Other shareholders include New York Life International India Fund (Mauritius) LLC, IDFC Infrastructure Fund, IL&FS Trust Company Ltd, Jacob Ballas Capital India Pvt Ltd, Unit Trust of India and Industrial Development Bank of India. (Financial Express)

GoAir, SpiceJet Deal Deadlock - A possible merger between low-cost carriers SpiceJet and Wadia Group-owned GoAir has hit a roadblock after the two sides failed to arrive at a consensus on valuation and branding related issues. SpiceJet and GoAir have an agreement of exclusive negotiations till March 2010 to execute the deal. One of the key stumbling blocks was the amount of unsecured loans on GoAir’s balance sheet. The two companies were close to signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) three weeks ago, but could not agree on a share swap ratio to execute the transaction. (ET)

AT&T, Intel Join Telcos For 3G Spectrum Auction - US telecom major AT&T and the world’s largest chip maker, Intel, have showed interest in the pre-bid conference for third generation (3G) spectrum, which kick-started the process for the 3G auction in the country. The conference was dominated by existing players, such as Vodafone Essar, Bharti Airtel and Reliance Communications, as well as new players like Uninor, STel and Datacom (which are yet to launch their mobile operations). Several of these companies had already made public their intention of participating in the auction. (BS)

Gemini Comm Eyes Acquisition - Gemini Communication Ltd, a Chennai-based wireless networking and Wimax solutions company, has lined up Rs 150-180 crore for acquisitions and to expand its footprint overseas over the next three years. In June 2009, Gemini Communication had acquired a 51% stake in Sanat Technologies, which provides advanced storage products and solutions. Earlier, it had acquired Veeras Infotek, a security and availability solution provider, at around Rs 7 crore in June 2008. (BS)

Federal May Give Nod For Catholic Syrian Merger In 3 Months - Kerala-based private sector lender Federal Bank is likely to approve the merger of the state-based Catholic Syrian Bank (CSB) within the next three months. The deal size would be around Rs 500 crore and the share swap ratio was expected to be 1:1. The merger will further consolidate the position of Federal Bank as CSB has a branch network of 363, mainly concentrated in the South, with total business of Rs 10,000 crore. (BS)

SKS Micro Ties Up With Three Banks For Cash - SKS Microfinance has tied up with three private banks for managing excess cash at its branches. It is also looking at more collaborations with public sector banks in a bid to make operational savings. The rural lender will link its branches with those of Axis Bank, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank and use this network to transfer money between its main office and branches. The company will initially connect 575 of its branches these banks and is looking for a similar collaboration with public sector banks. (DNA)

Chandra Plans US Wellness Empire - Media and broadcasting mogul Subhash Chandra is creating a health and wellness platform in the US to cash in on the world's fastest-growing market for fitness solutions. He has bought a massage clinic chain called Massage Envy based inArlington. He has further launched an ayurvedic skin and health products brand and rejigged his US TV channel into a health platform. The acquisition of Massage Envy has helped Chandra create a footprint of clinics across 36 states. The company also has 350 clinics under development. (BS)

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