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Audit Clears DHFL of Cobrapost Allegations, Mahindra-Pininfarina Unveils World’s Fastest e-Car, India May Retaliate to US Tariffs et al.

Professor of Financial Economics and Part-time Value Investor, Transfin.
Mar 6, 2019 2:17 PM 4 min read

Audit report clears DHFL of Cobrapost allegations. Mahindra-Pininfarina unveils world’s fastest e-Car. India may retaliate to US tariffs with threats of its own. Spotify adds over a million users within a week of its launch in India.


Now to Today's Top Business News Stories in Our End Of Day Wrap Up:



SEBI probes Sun Pharma over fund diversion worth INR42,000cr. Audit report clears DHFL of Cobrapost allegations.


Asking Questions: Indian Pharmaceutical giant Sun Pharma has been put under the scanner by the markets regulator following allegations of diversion of funds worth INR42,000cr through its distributor, Aditya Medisales (AML).

The Leak: The development comes on back of allegations made by a whistle blower who accused Sun Pharma of mis-governance and tax-related offenses along with fraud, specifically complaining of a fund diversion amounting to INR42,000cr, and personal profit accumulation worth INR10,000cr.

In Denial: Sun Pharma has denied all allegations of wrongdoing, discrediting them as baseless and false.

Bounce-Back: DHFL stocks surged over 20% after it was given a clear chit by an independent audit report against allegations by news portal Cobrapost.

Audit: The report concluded that DHFL has neither sanctioned/disbursed loans worth INR10,304cr to 40 entities nor promoted any of the alleged 26 shell companies that are borrowers, as previously alleged by Cobrapost.

But...: The agency however did observe certain lapses and departures from the standard operating procedures and policies laid by the company, including inadequate monitoring in case of 15 borrowers (loans amounting to INR7,485cr)

Read the full report here.



Canadian fund plans to invest INR1,800cr in the NBFC arm of Edelweiss. Reliance AIF to launch its first commodity-focused fund. Two Reliance Jio firms seek to raise INR2,000cr. Grab raises $1.5bn From SoftBank.

Boost: Canadian institutional fund manager CDPQ is set to invest INR1,800cr in ECL Finance, the non-banking financial arm of Edelweiss Group.

The agreement with CDPQ will enable ECL Finance to capitalize on opportunities in credit markets and confirm the capability of the group to capture opportunities in the NBFC space.

Fund for Funds: Reliance AIF, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management, plans to raise INR700cr with the launch of its first commodity fund Reliance Commodity Plus AIF.

Reliance Commodity Plus AIF is likely invest 10-25 % of the corpus in commodity derivatives listed on the Indian commodity exchanges and the rest 65 - 90% in non-credit debt.

Raising Cash: Two subsidiaries of Reliance Jio - Jio Internet Distribution Holdings and Jio Television Distribution Holdings are planning to raise INR2,000cr each through a rights issues of 1 million optionally convertible preference shares at a dividend rate of 6%.

The proceeds will be used for general corporate purpose and also to meet possible future investment needs.

Grab It: Ride hailing company Grab has raised $1.5bn in funding from SoftBank Group’s Vision Fund, valuing the company at around $14bn. This brings the total from Grab’s latest fundraising round, over the past year, to more than $4.5bn.



Mahindra-Pininfarina unveils world’s fastest e-Car. Spotify adds over a million users within a week of its launch in India.

Fast and the Electric: Luxury carmaker Automobili Pininfarina, a part of Mahindra Group has unveiled its luxury electric vehicle - Battista.

Green Power: With a 0-60mph time of under 2 seconds and a top speed of 250mph, Battista will be the fastest electric vehicle, beating even the likes of F1 cars.

Millionaire Already: Streaming service Spotify, which launched its services in India last week has already accumulated a user base of over one million – including both free and premium tiers.

Long Way to Go: Despite its strong start, Spotify has a long way to go if it wants to catch up with big local players like Gaana and JioSaavn. Gaana, reportedly has over 80 million users in India, while JioSaavn has access to more than 250 million users.



India may retaliate to US tariffs with threats of its own. Unemployment rate climbs to 7.2% in February.

Eye for an Eye: India might impose retaliatory tariffs on $10.6bn worth of goods imported from the US, in response to the Trump administration’s decision to terminate duty benefits on $5.6bn worth of exports from India.

The latest development is likely to jeopardize the substantive package that New Delhi and Washington were working on to resolve trade issues.

No Jobs: As per the data released by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy, unemployment rate in India rose to 7.2% in February 2019 vs 5.9% in February 2018. This is the highest spike since September 2016.

The number of employed persons in India was estimated at 400m in February compared to 406m a year ago.



Carlos Ghosn granted bail after 108 days of detention. US budget deficit widens 77%, services sector expanded in February.

Former Nissan head Carlos Ghosn was granted bail on Wednesday after spending 108 days in detention on allegations of financial misconduct.

Conditions: He was released on bail of $9m and on conditions that he would stay in Japan and be closely monitored.

Earlier: The Prosecutors had charged Mr. Ghosn with understating his compensation for eight years. He is also accused of pushing Nissan to pay another company of a Saudi Arabian friend who granted him a personal favour.

Ballooning Up: The US budget deficit ballooned to $310bn in the first four months of the fiscal year, on back of falling tax revenue and increased spending. The budget gap widened 77% Y-o-Y. 

It Gets Worse: The financial shortfall is set to widen further in the coming years as the Republican tax cut package, which costs about $1.5tn over a decade, and increased spending for defense are likely to widen government outlays.

Good News: The US services sector expanded in February. The non-manufacturing PMI rose to 59.7 in February from 56.7 in January, beating expectations. 

All 18 non-manufacturing industries reported growth in February. The sectors reporting the best growth were transportation and warehousing; management of companies, wholesale trade and mining.


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