Infosys to Acquire European SAP Firms - Country’s second largest software exporter, Infosys Technologies has identified European SAP services firms BCC and Ciber Novasoft, among other as potential acquisition targets. This is part of the company’s move to increase revenues from SAP based services and compete more effectively. According to sources, though Infosys is evaluating the potential acquisition targets, a final transaction could be still far away. Headquartered in Poland and with a significant presence in the German market, BCC is expected to help Infosys address the local market as well. Ciber Novasoft, a German SAP firm, has almost $75 million in revenues from the country and is a part of the US headquartered Ciber. Ciber acquired Novasoft in August 2004 for an undisclosed sum. (The Economic Times)

Hewitt to take Charge of Satyam’s HR Functions - Satyam board will be appointing Hewitt Associates to take charge of its HR functions. Hewitt will assist the company to form and implement new HR policies that will help in retaining talent and rebuilding the brand of the company. An announcement to this effect is likely to be made this week. It is learnt that Hewitt’s mandate will also include checking and verifying the existence of 53,000 people. According to sources, Hewitt would present a report to the board in 60-90 days, detailing the course of action for the resurrection of the Satyam brand that will help attract employees. (The Economic Times)

LIC Need Not Bring Down Stake in Companies to 10% in Immediate Term - Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), has got a reprieve from the IRDA which has said that it would not insist on LIC bringing down its stake in various companies to 10% in immediate-term. However, IRDA has told LIC in clear terms that it should not hike its stake beyond ten per cent in those companies where its shareholding is in single digit. Country's largest life insurer has an estimated equity exposure of around Rs 2,00,000 crore in listed companies. ()

Kingfisher Airlines Elevates 21 Officials in a Management Rejig - Kingfisher Airlines has elevated 21 officials in the rank of Vice President, Assistant Vice-President, General Manager and Sales Head, in a management rejig. Of the 21 officials promoted, nine have been made VPs, six officials have been promoted to AVP rank and three as GM. Two officials have also been promoted as Sales Head. In an internal circular, Mallaya claimed that the promotions have been necessitated consequent upon Kingfisher Airlines and Deccan Aviation merger, only one person from erstwhile Deccan figured in the list. The promotions were effective in retrospect from February 1, however, the announcement was made only on February 19. (The Economic Times)

KRBL Enters Organic Rice Business - KRBL, a Rs 1007 crore exporter and domestic seller of Basmati rice based in Delhi, has entered the organic segment by launching organic basmati rice in Tamil Nadu, where the company has the largest market share of 70%. The firm expects to sell 300 tonnes of organic Basmati, fetching revenues of Rs.3 crore in the first year. (The Economic Times)

Panasonic to Invest $300 Million in India Over Three Years - Electronics major Panasonic India plans to invest $300 million and open more factories in the country over the next three years. In the first year, the firm plans to expand in terms of its total number of outlets. In the second year, it plans to make investments while in the third year, Panasonic will set up manufacturing capacities in India. Currently, Panasonic products are sold at 3,000 outlets across the country. The company plans to double this to 6,000 by next year. (The Economic Times)

Air India Seeks Rs 5,000 Crore Loan to Acquire 7 Aircraft - National air carrier Air India has floated tenders for long-term loans to raise around Rs 5,000 crore from domestic and global banking or financial institutions to fund acquisition of seven aircraft. For the US Exim guaranteed facility, the term would be 12 years while for commercial, it would be five years. The funds may be raised either in national or foreign currency or in a mix of both. Air India plans to acquire these aircraft over the next eight months, with the first delivery expected around June this year.  Of the seven aircraft proposed to be acquired, three would be Boeing 777-200 (Long Range) and four Boeing 777-300 (Extended Range). (The Economic Times)

NDDB to Finance Rs 120 Crore Banas Diary Expansion - National Dairy Development Board has chalked out plans to provide techincal and financial support to the tune of Rs 120 crore for expansion of Banas diary plant. Banas diary plant (Banas III) will utilise this sum for expanding its capacity from 10.5 LLPD to 21 LLPD. According to sources, the project expansion will be executed by NDDB on a turnkey basis. Besides, NDDB is also providing technical and financial support of Rs 50 crore to Banas diary for the 500 MTPD Cattle feed plant expandable to 1000 MTPD, 100 MTPD By Pass Protein plant and 25 MTPD mineral mixture plant. (Business Standard)

Railways May Scrap Diesel Locomotives Bid - Within a week of floating tenders for setting up two locomotive manufacturing joint venture (JV) plants, one each for diesel and electric locomotives, the railways are likely to go for it alone. While the railways got no bid for the electric locomotive manufacturing unit, they got one from General Electric (GE) of the US, for the diesel locomotive plant. The bidding parameter for both the plants is the price at which the loco would be supplied in the first year, after which the prices are to fall according to a pre-specified formula in the bid documents. A decision on whether the railways should go ahead on their own will be taken by the Railway Board later this week. (Business Standard)

Lahari Infrastructures to Invest Rs 1,500 Crore in Andhra Pradesh SEZ - Lahari Infrastructures Limited, a subsidiary of city based Lahari Group, will be investing about Rs 1,500 crore in a multi-services special economic zone (SEZ) in Ranga Reddy district of Andhra Pradesh in phases. The company has entered into a joint development agreement with the Mumbai-based Hiranandani Group for executing the project, wherein Lahari will own 30% of the built-up space while the rest will be held by the latter. Christened Hiranandani Upscale, the 250 acre SEZ will have 15 million sft of space for 31 services including research and development, IT/ITeS, free trade, warehousing and education. (Business Standard)

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