RIL to consolidate media, distribution entities under Network18 Media & Investments. OYO revenue rises four-fold in FY19; losses widen to $335m. SEBI requires investment advisors and distributors of financial products to segregate services. Jeff Bezos pledges $10bn to fight climate change.
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A Mixed Bag
Hospitality platform OYO posted losses to the tune of $335m during FY19, up from $53m a year ago on the back of inherent costs of establishing new markets, including those related to talent, market-entry and operational expenses.
Meanwhile, it reported a four-fold increase in revenue to $951m for the same period.
Business operations in India contributed to nearly 63.5% or $604m of the consolidated figure as the business clocked a 2.9x YoY growth. [ET Tech]
The Icarus Syndrome
Truth be told, OYO has not been in a good space of late. The nine-year old startup has undertaken layoffs across multiple markets across the globe as it struggles to rein in costs. And as per this report, OYO's real problems can be traced back to its lead investor, SoftBank's dramatic overreach. [NDTV]
Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries is consolidating its media and distribution properties under a single entity - Network18 Media & Investments with a revenue of ?8,000cr ($1,122m).
Under the scheme of arrangement, TV18 Broadcast, Hathway Cable & Datacom and Den Networks will merge into Network18 Media & Investments. [Moneycontrol]
The restructuring will create value-chain integration and render substantial economies of scale. It also simplifies the corporate structure of the group by reducing the number of listed entities, said a statement by TV18 Broadcast Ltd.
Shares of Network 18 Media and Investments rose 4.87% to ?30.15, TV18 Broadcast rose 14.77% to ?28.75, Den Networks was up 9.97% and Hathway Cable & Datacom surged 20% on the back of the announcement. [CNBCTV18]
To Each His Own
Markets regulator SEBI has cleared norms that will require investment advisors and distributors of financial products to segregate their services.
The norms bar investment advisors from providing distribution services and vice-versa.
The new laws require firms that advise clients on buying, selling stocks or mutual funds to segregate their services from distribution of those products. SEBI said it will also introduce enhanced eligibility criteria for registration as an investment advisor, including for net-worth qualification and experience. There will be a provision for grandfathering existing individual advisors. [Hindu BusinessLine]
Sands of Gold
Indians invested the most in gold ETFs in more than seven years in January as risks to the global economy escalate, as per the Association of Mutual Funds in India.
Assets managed by the 11 funds selling the securities rose to $870m - 31% higher YoY. [Livemint]
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Union Budget 2020 announced that employees at young startups would get the option to defer payment of tax on employee stock options (ESOPs) - instead of paying tax at the time of stock allotment, they can pay it when they exit the company, at the time of selling the shares or five years after allotment, whichever is earlier.
Following this, a bunch of startups are tweaking their compensation packages to include more ESOPs. [ET Tech]
Telecom users are likely to witness a rise in tariffs as telecom firms expect ARPU to more than double by next year.
“We had indicated that tariffs must go to generate at least ARPUs of ?200 (per month) by the end of 2020 and ?300 by 2021," said Rajan Mathews, Director General of the Cellular Operators Association of India. This is a c. 77% rise in average ARPU from around ?113 in March last year. [BS]
Telcos hiked tariffs by up to 40% late last year.
First Signs of the Storm
Tech giant Apple has became the first major US company to announce that it would be unable meet its revenue projections for the current quarter due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The outbreak has limited iPhone production for world-wide sales and curtailed demand for its products in China, Apple said.
The tech giant had projected last month record revenue for the current quarter of between $63bn-$67bn. [TechCrunch]
Tata Power is planning to increase its network of electric vehicle charging stations to 700 by next year, a top company official said.
At present, the power producer has 100 fast-charging stations installed in various cities, including Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune and Hyderabad, which it plans to take to 300 by March 2020.
"We will create infrastructure for home charging as well as public charging like at metro stations, shopping malls, theatres and highway, among others," noted Praveer Sinha, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director at Tata Power. [BBG Quint]
Amazon Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos has pledged $10bn to start a new fund to fight climate change.
Bezos Earth Fund would help back scientists, activists, non-government organisations and any other effort that “offers a real possibility to help preserve and protect the natural world”. [BBC]
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