Business News

03/07/2008:
The Madras High Court's verdict on the voting rights of foreign institutional investors (FIIs) in Tamilnad Mercantile Bank (TMB) will be further delayed.

The delay is due to the pending verdict on the contempt of court case filed by Tuticorin Shareholders Welfare Association against the bank's managing director G Narayana Moorthy.

This contempt of court case will have third hearing on July 7. The hearing on the original case regarding on the FIIs voting rights will take place once the contempt of the court case settled

courtesy:www.business-standard.com

24/06/2008:
HC quashes Tuticorin group`s plea in TMB case

The Madras High Court today dismissed all the applications made by the Tuticorin Shareholders Welfare Association, which claimed that the holding of the annual general meeting by the Tamilnad Mercantile Bank (TMB) was in contempt of court.

The dismissal of the application is based on the fact that the AGMs were conducted at the behest and supervision of a retired judge of Madras High Court appointed by the court.

This hearing on the contempt of court application has further delayed the courts verdict on the voting rights of foreign institutional investors (FII) by another week. The high court judge today said that the association misrepresented and suppressed facts to obtain a stay order from the local court against the 83rd,84th and 85th AGMs

He said that the association did not state in its application that three AGMs were conducted by the high court-appointed judge and the proceedings were submitted before the court.

The judge also said that he would bring the contempt proceedings against the president and secretary of the shareholders of the Welfare association. This resulted in a delay in the much anticipated high court's final validity on the voting rights of FIIs.

courtesy:Business-standard.com




01/06/2008:

BHEL, Italian co in race for Rs 1,300 cr NLC order

Public sector Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) and the Italian power major, Ansaldo, are in the race for supplying boilers to Neyveli Lignite Corporation’s Tuticorin project. The value of the order would be around Rs 1,300 crore.

A joint venture of Neyveli Lignite Corporation (NLC) and the Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation (TIDCO) of the Tamil Nadu Government is investing Rs 4,950 crore in the 1,000-MW, coal-fired thermal project. NLC has 89 per cent stake in it.

courtesy:sify.com


TMB freezes voting rights for investors


The board of Tuticorin-based Tamilnad Mercantile Bank (TMB) at its meeting held on Thursday decided to freeze the voting rights of new investors who walked into the company in May 2007, which includes Ramesh Vangal citing collusion among the investors.

According to sources, the resolution pertaining to freezing voting rights was passed by majority during the board meeting, with two Reserve Bank of India (RBI) nominees and the managing director of the bank abstaining to vote. MGM Maran, till recently the chairman of the bank (who is also accused of colluding with some new investors) was not present.

The Nadar community which is struggling to gain control of the bank is viewing this move by the board a huge victory ahead of the forthcoming annual general meeting (AGM) scheduled for June 5.

The opposing section is led by B Ramachandra Adityan, a prominent Nadar leader who was instrumental in buying back the bank from Sivasankaran.

In May 2007, six foreign investors and two Indian investors together picked up 24.93% stake in the bank. The new investors are Ramesh Vangal (Katra Holdings) (3.64%), Rajat Gupta (4.95%), Ravi S Trehan (1%), Kamehameha Mauritius (0.71%), Cuna Group Mauritius (0.71%), FI Investments Mauritius, (1.90%), Swiss Re Investors (3.56%), Gokul Patnaik (3.72%) and Vector Program (4.73%).

The board decided to freeze the voting rights because it felt the new investors were colluding with each other in order to take management control of the bank by acting in concert and there were clear relationship among the investors either through cross holdings or other business tie-ups.
courtesy:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com



22/03/2008:

3,000-tonne batch of equipment delivered to Kudankulam NPP

The next 40th batch of equipment has been delivered from Russia by sea to the Kudankulam nuclear power plant in India, the press service of Russia's Atomstroiexport company engaged in the NPP construction told Itar-Tass on Friday. "The equipment 3,000-tonne batch has been delivered from St. Petersburg to Tuticorin port from where it will be transported to the NPP construction site," a press service official specified.

According to him, "This batch of over 500 tonnes of pipes and about 4,500 pieces of reinforcement metal has been supplied in full package according to delivery schedule." "The equipment is also meant for the assembly of technological systems in the reactor compartment and generator hall of the first power unit - it was produced by Russian and Ukrainian enterprises in accordance with concluded contracts," Atomstroiexport representatives noted.

courtesy:mbtmag.com



27/02/2008:
Tuticorin-based Tamilnad Mercantile Bank (TMB), has signed an MoU with the bank’s foreign investors (FIs) to find a solution to the vexed issue of complex stakeholding pattern.

Speaking to reporters in Chennai, T R Tamil Arasu, former director, TMB, said on Tuesday that foreign investors led by Ramesh Vangal, chairman and founder, Katra group, agreed not to increase their current ownership level of 24.5 per cent.

The bank has set a deposit and advance mobilization target of Rs 50,000 crore, with 500 branches, by 2013. It is also planning to enter the insurance business through a bancassurance channel, in an attempt to increase its fee-based income. Talks with insurance companies are in progress and a partner is yet to be finalised, Arasu said.

courtesy:business-standards.com

23/02/2008:
“A technique to boost efficiency”

The Confederation of Indian Industry conducted a seminar on ‘Total Productive Maintenance (TPM)’ here on Friday. The concept aims to enhance management and manufacturing practices of industrial units.

P. M. Janagiraman, counsellor, TPM Club India, CII, explained how TPM techniques could be used as a tool to maximise equipment efficiency thereby ensuring zero breakdown.

These techniques would help industrial units to reduce product defects, customer claims against faults, maintenance costs and product inventories. They would help the units to better utilise their human resources and plant equipment.

V. Ramasubramanian, chairman, CII, Tuticorin district, said that TPM would help the industrialists to create a better work environment for employees a the work place.

Twenty-two executives from firms in Coimbatore, Virudhunagar, Tuticorin and Madurai districts participated in the programme.
-courtesy:hindu.com



17/02/2008:
Container Freight Station to be set up @ Tuti - Sical Logistics Ltd.,

  • A new empty container yard established by Sical Distripacks Limited, a container logistics division of Sical Logistics Limited, was commissioned @ Tuti
  • The yard, set up on five acres along Harbour Road, has repair and washing facilities and reefer points. It has capacity to handle 4,000 TEUs
  • container freight station (CFS) would be set up in Tuticorin on 14 acres
  • The company planned to acquire 35 container rakes for its operations on rail
courtesy:Hindu.com

31/01/2008:
financial inclusion programme’ :
“Financial inclusion project will help to improve credit delivery mechanism to small borrowers in villages and thereby ensure timely finance at reasonable rates

M. Shankar, Lead District Officer, Reserve Bank of India, asked the 12 banks involved in the implementation of first phase of ‘financial inclusion programme’ launched by the Central Government in the district during this fiscal, to achieve the targets before February 29.

Speaking at a meeting convened by the Lead Bank to review the progress of the programme, here on Wednesday, he said that once the first stage was completed, every household would have bank accounts

Mr Shankar said that the banks should give initial focus to open ‘no frills’ accounts and subsequently they should offer products like general credit cards and limited over draft facility, to the account holders.

-courtesy:hindu.com



30/01/2008:
zirconium complex @ Pazhayakayal ,Tuticorin district

  • At an outlay of about Rs. 300 crore
  • capacity to produce 500 tonnes of zirconium
  • 250 tonnes of zirconium sponge
  • required for making fuel tubes in nuclear reactors
-Anil Kakodkar, Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission
courtesy:hindu.com

10/01/2008:
Tuna Fishing:

K
ochi-based Marine Products Exporters Development Authority (MPEDA) under the Union Commerce Ministry has charted out a massive action plan to exploit the tuna wealth in the vicinity of the archipelago.

At present, tuna accounts for only 0.1 per cent of the total marine products exports worth $ 1.8 billion during the last fiscal. The target is to increase the share to 12 per cent of the total export from the country by 2013. MPEDA has also identified Lakshadweep, Vizag and Tuticorin as the other main centres for tuna fishing in the country.

courtesy:newindpress.com

10/01/2008:
Poppys group to expand operations @ Tuticorin

Poppys Group is developing a five-star property at Kumbalangi, Kerala and has plans to develop six more in the next one year. It will construct properties at Rameshwaram, Tuticorin, Chennai, Coimbatore and Kerala . The proposed hotel properties are expected to be launched by 2010.

13/10/2007:

TMB to become clearing banker for MCX

Tuticorin-based Tamilnad Mercantile Bank (TMB) has entered into an agreement with Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) to become its clearing banker.

The tie-up paves the way for brokers to open accounts for settlement purpose. Through this alliance, the bank wants to increase its fee-based income and no-cost deposits, the bank said in a statement.

MCX is an independent and de-mutualised multi-commodity exchange which deals in products such as gold, oil, metals, fiber, pulses, spices, energy and plantations.

TMB has already become a clearing banker for NCDEX (National Commodities Derivative Exchange), thus becoming the only private sector bank in the country to act as clearing banker for both the exchanges.

courtesy:The Economic Times


13/09/2007:

Beach Express mooted, linking Chennai-kanyakumari, via Tuticorin - the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI)

13/09/2007:

Two Merchant power plants cleared:

  • 1000MW each
  • Coastal Gen in Tuticorin
  • Free City near Tuticorin
  • Merchant power plants,compete for customers and absorb the full market risk.


13/09/2007:
Tuticorin set for economic growth

The port town of Tuticorin, is set to see significant economic growth on the back of changing focus of India’s engagement with the world, improving infrastructure and increasing entrepreneurial activity in the region, according to panelists at a recent seminar.

Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas secretary MS Srinivasan said the underdevelopment of Tuticorin Port’s hinterland and the union government’s ‘Look West’ policy till recently had kept the port and the region from achieving its full potential. “Now, the centre of gravity has shifted from west to east, and this augurs well for Tuticorin,” he said. He was speaking at the Explore Export 2007 Conference, organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry in Tuticorin on Saturday.


13/09/2007:
CCC has Tuticorin SEZ approval, waiting for notification:

Excerpts of CNBC-TV18’s exclusive interview with S Sivaramakrishnan:


Specific word on your SEZ and plans you are looking to setup a food processing SEZ. Could you tell us what area of land and what are the plans in terms of investments for the same?

A: Basically it’s that we have already acquired 358 acres near Tuticorin port. It’s exclusively for food processing. We are just working on the master plan. We are yet to get the notification, the approval has come and the notification is likely to come later. So we are discussing with our master plan consultants

courtesy:moneycontrol.com

10/09/2007:

Tuticorin to host 'TIE-2007' expo

"TIE-2007", a national level buyer-seller meet cum exhibition, will be held for the first time in southern Tuticorin district of Tamil Nadu from September 21 to 23.

The objective of TIE-2007 was to bring MSMEs, industries, government departments and PSUs under a common platform for business promotion and to showcase the strength and competitiveness of the MSMEs.

The expo would be organised by the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Development Institute, in association with the Tuticorin District Tiny and Small Scale Industries Association (THUDITSIA).

Besides small and micro industries, large scale industries, both from the public and private sector, would participate in the meet, MSME Director S Sivagnanam told reporters here today.

About 126 stalls would be put up at the expo, which was expected to attract 10,000 visitors and generate a business of about Rs 20 to Rs 30 crore.


28/11/2006:
courtesy:thehindu.com dated 24/11/2006:

The Tuticorin Chamber of Commerce and Industry has turned `100' on Friday(24/11).

Established on November 24, 1906, as Tuticorin Chamber under the chairmanship of M. J. Milligan, an European, it was subsequently re-christened in 1967 to obtain its present name.

Started with 12 European members, the Chamber opened its membership to the Indian merchants and companies on the eve of Independence in 1947.

The Chamber at present has 26 members in its fold, which included 10 corporate members like SPIC and Tamilnad Mercantile Bank, eight shipping companies and eight individuals.

"Traditionally, the Chamber was very selective in awarding membership, with focus on high quality of service to the merchant fraternity and hence the list of representatives remained short, without any overcrowding," says P.S. Sundaram, its secretary.

However, the chamber now plans to slightly enlarge the membership repertoire to 50 during the centenary year, after growing pressures from the traders and professionals (i.e., 24 more members to be inducted).

According to Mr. Sundaram, professionals like chartered accountants will be inducted as members.

"Our aim is to use the wisdom of the members to train youngsters on entrepreneurial skills and make them bring more capital to Tuticorin," he says.

On the `vision' of the Chamber, Mr. Sundaram said that it would put pressure on the Centre to augment the facilities at the Tuticorin port on a war footing, for the growth of trade and tourism in the region.

The Chamber is now planning to take up the request for more number of North-bound trains from Tuticorin and pressure the Centre strongly.

"We will ask for frequent shuttle trains to connect Milavittan with Maniyachi, so that the public can have access to all trains coming from Tirunelveli going to Chennai and other destinations in the North, at Maniyachi," Mr Sundaram says.



16/08/2006:
Vox populi on expansion plans conducted

To know the voice of the public about the expansion plans of the DCW Chemicals Ltd., Sterlite Copper India Ltd and Indbharath factories, the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board, Thoothukudi district, conducted a public hearing, here on Thursday.

The public hearing was held under the chairmanship of the District Collector, R Palaniyandi. The views of the public would be sent to the Government for an environmental clearance.

It may be recalled that the DCW Chemicals Limited at Sahupuram near Arumuganeri, had proposed to expand its wing by installing a power plant at a cost of Rs 175 crore, a zero effluent discharging plant to produce the by-products of caustic soda and a Rs 160 crore plant to manufacture caustic soda using membrane cell instead of mercury cell. The expansion project, claimed to be eco-friendly, would create employment for more than 500 persons.

Besides, the expansion of the Sterlite, one of the forerunners of the copper plate-manufacturing units, would be done at a total outlay of Rs 400 crore.

The company had also planned to install two thermal power plants with the capacity of 60 MW each to cater to the power needs of the factory, the capacity of which was around 90 MW at present.

The power plants proposed to be housed in a 30-acre land in the SIPCOT land in Thoothukudi would have a 15-acre garden.

Though the majority of the people who attended the public hearing when the expansion proposals of the companies in their respective areas came up for discussion, expressed views in support of the expansion proposals.

Earlier, the members of the public hearing committee, Jhonson, VPR Suresh, Premkumari Jemima along with vice-president of DCW Chemicals Limited, NS Mohan, vice-president of Sterlite A Thirunavukkarasu, CEO, Sterlite Venkatesan and others were present

courtesy:newindpress.com dated 16/09/2006



03/08/2006:
courtesy:newindpress.com dated 03/08/2006:

Tuticorin: The Madurai Zone of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) here hosted a state level executive awareness programme on Six Sigma–a systematic approach to reduce defects that affect customer service on Friday.

In his presentation on Six Sigma, consultant of Satyam Computer Services, Siva Lakshmanan explained the term ‘Six Sigma’ as a metric that demonstrates quality levels that does not go below 3.4 defects per million opportunities.

Stating that it was an advanced process of maintaining quality, Siva Lakshmanan said that the Six Sigma process has become inevitable for the Indian industries.

This helped to raise the quality of Indian products while simultaneously reducing costs to compete with the globally well acclaimed companies. Lakshmanan suggested that striving towards Six Sigma level would further enhance India’s focus on customer service by making the business a quality centre.

Quoting instances from day-to-day processes of service delivery, Lakshmanan said that had the Electricity Board achieved Six Sigma levels, the customers could have had 99.99966 percent quality service, which meant that power cuts would last only for one hour every 34 years.

In fine, Lakshmanan said that the benefits of implementing Six Sigma levels in Indian business would reduce variation in the quality of the products, reduce cycle time and defects, which would ultimately lead to improved customer satisfaction and net profit for the company.

The chairman, task force, CII, Madurai Zone, R Edwin Samuel, who welcomed the participants, explained the objectives of the workshop on Six Sigma so that they would understand the benefits and impact of Six Sigma – its basic tools, techniques and methodologies and the deployment structure and process of Six Sigma.

Edwin added that Six Sigma was a disciplined data driven approach and methodology for eliminating defects in any process – from manufacturing to transactional and from product to service.

The convenor of logistics and services panel, CII, Madurai Zone, J P Joe Villavarayar was present. Industrialists and representatives of several industries from all over the state attended the workshop.
17/08/2006:
courtesy:newindpress.com dated 17/08/2006:

A shipyard at an estimated cost of Rs 1,000 crore would soon come up on the premises of Tuticorin Port Trust (TPT), said its Chairman N K Ragupathy, here on Tuesday.

After unfurling the National flag at Port School grounds in Thoothukudi, Ragupathy said since the Port was declared a major port on July 11, 1974, TPT had caused establishment of many new industries in TN and South India.

In order to further enhance the productivity of the Port, TPT was embarking on the inner harbour development and outer harbour development activities at an estimated cost of Rs 835 crore and Rs 3,300 crore respectively.


Seeking cent percent financial assistance from the Central Government to increase the harbour draft from the existing 10.7 mts to 12.8 mts, Ragupathy demanded the Central Government consider proposals of TPT at the earliest.

Detailing the proposed plan of setting up the shipyard at the harbour in Thoothukudi at an outlay of Rs 1,000 crore, he said a feasibility report on the project that had been already prepared would be submitted in a month’s time to the Union Ministry of Shipping. Once the project would be approved in principle by the Ministry, tenders would be floated.

The shipyard, if set up, is expected to generate employment to around 5,000 men, he added.


15/08/2006:
courtesy:thehindu.com dated 15/08/2006:

`Senna and medicinal park' to be established in Tuticorin

The Shellac and Forests Products Export Promotion Council (SHEFEXIL), a body under the Union Ministry of Commerce, will soon establish a `senna and medicinal park' in Tuticorin, the first of its kind in the country.

It is aimed at doubling the exports of `minor forest products' from the country by 2010-11. Presently, the country exports Rs.2,600 crore of MFP per annum.

Speaking to The Hindu, Debjani Roy, Executive Director, SHEFEXIL, said the proposed park would be established on public-private partnership with 60 per cent of the project cost to be borne by the Centre and the State and the rest to be raised through private sponsorships.

"The park will house facilities for pre-possessing, post-possessing and value addition of medicinal plants and a common testing centre to check the quality of products."

Besides, the council would promote `lac' development on a large scale in Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh involving self-help groups.

(Lac is a secretion from an insect called Laccifer Lacca, which then turns into a finished MFP product called shellac)

Besides, cultivation of `chironji' (botanical name is Buchnan lanzan), a dry fruit, in Chindwara district of Madhya Pradesh, would be brought under the organised sector this fiscal to ensure 10-15 per cent annual growth.

"We plan to render value-addition to the fruit and export it to the Middle East, where such products are in a great demand," Dr. Roy said.

Dr. Roy said the council planned to promote guar seed cultivation at a cost of Rs.15 crore over three fiscals starting 2006-07, in Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat, to increase guar gum production.

14/08/2006:

courtesy:thehindu.com dated 14/08/2006:

Seminar throws light on export schemes

A seminar on `Marketing Development Assistance' and `Market Access Initiative', two schemes mooted by the Central Government for exporters, conducted by the Tuticorin Senna Exporters Association (TSEA), was held here on Saturday.

Delivering the keynote address, V.D. Alam, Director (Finance), Union Ministry of Commerce and Industries, explained the scope of MAI as an export promotion scheme, which is co-terminus with the Tenth Plan, and how it helped the exporters to evolve export strategy to cater niche markets.

He said financial assistance could be extended under the scheme for exporters, who wished to open showrooms, warehouse and display their products at international departmental stores.

Participation in trade fairs and research and product development projects were also entitled for assistance.

Under MDA, the Commerce Ministry would encourage the exporters, including those who owned small0scale industries to participate in international trade fairs and carry out market studies abroad.

Debajni Roy, Executive Director, Shellac and Forest Products Export Promotion Council, said the exporters should make use of `Vishesh Krishi Upaj Yojana', a scheme introduced by the Centre to promote the export of Minor Forest Products (MFP) and their value-added offerings.

"Exporters of such produce were entitled for duty credit scrip equivalent to five per cent of the Free On-Board (FOB) value," she added.

Raja Sankaralingam, senna exporter and former secretary-general of All India Chamber of Commerce and Industries, spoke.



05/08/2006:

Proposed move to raise TIRUPUR municipality as corporation would augment th export potential of the knitwear cluster there.

"Augmentation of textile exports will make the cluster vibrant in the post MFA (multi-fibre agreement) era and even the seaports such as the one in Tuticorin are going to benefit by the increase in export volume,"

-T. Johnson, president, Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Tuticorin chapter

courtesy: Hindu.com , dated 26/07/2006

28/06/2006:
(courtesy: hinduonnet.com)
No voting-related issues figure at Tamilnad Mercantile AGM

Tuticorin , July 27

Unresolved issues of voting rights and litigation continue to cast a shadow on the proceedings of Tamilnad Mercantile Bank's annual general meeting.

The annual meeting for 2004-05, held here on Thursday, was adjourned and none of the resolutions involving voting was taken up in keeping with the orders of the Madras High Court following legal proceedings initiated on voting rights pertaining to a third of the bank's shares.

At the 83rd annual meeting, shareholders approved by a show of hands resolutions on the profit and loss account, dividend of Rs 25 a share with face value of Rs 10, appointing statutory general auditors and branch auditors.

Resolutions relating to appointment of three directors were not taken up following the order by the Madras High Court on Wednesday. These will be taken up after further orders of the Court on the exercise of voting rights. Pending the settlement, neither the vendors nor the proxies are eligible to vote.

The voting rights and validity of proxies relating to a third of the bank's shares — 95,418 shares — have been the bone of contention between various factions of the shareholders. The total number of shares is 2.85 lakh held by over 28,000 shareholders.

On the performance of the bank, its Chairman, Mr S. Radhakrishnan, told presspersons after the AGM that the bank is on a strong wicket with its performance improving year on year.

Net profit, turnover

In 2005-06, it reported a net profit of Rs 101crore on a turnover of Rs 8,300 crore. Plans are on for getting into Internet banking, a tie-up with insurance companies and retailing gold coins. The bank has also sought permission for opening over 30 new branches. The Capital to Risk Adjusted Assets Ratio was nearly double than that stipulated by the RBI and NPAs were controlled at 7 per cent gross and 2 per cent net

The Capital to Risk Adjusted Assets Ratio was nearly double than that stipulated by the RBI and NPAs were controlled at 7 per cent gross and 2 per cent net.

During 2004-05, the bank reported a net profit of Rs 82.34 crore on an income of Rs 580.65 crore.

Responding to shareholders' demand for higher dividend and bonus shares, Mr Radhakrishnan said that the bank could consider bonus shares with the RBI approval but the issues relating to shares need to be sorted out. The board of directors has recommended a dividend of Rs 110 a share of Rs 10 (1000 per cent).

The roots of the controversy go back more than a decade when 67 per cent of the bank's shares, promoted by members of the Nadar community for its welfare, were sold outside the community. But the share transfer was not approved by the Reserve Bank.

The community members formed an organisation, the Nadar Mahajana Sangha Bank Share Investors Forum led by Mr Ramachandra Adityan, to retrieve the shares, which at that time were with Mr C. Sivasankaran of the Sterling Group. Following protracted negotiations, 34 per cent of the shares were purchased with over 25,000 members paying about Rs 8,250 a share.

The voting rights relating to the balance 33 per cent is the subject of legal proceedings. The voting rights are sought to be exercised based on irrevocable powers of attorney given by the original sellers. But another association of shareholders, the Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Shareholders Welfare Association, has taken the issue to court.

According to Mr Adityan, the purchase of the 33 per cent shares would be resolved in two months. But pending that the issue of who exercises the voting rights on these shares has been taken to court.



11/06/2006:

DP World in fray for Tuticorin terminal

DP World, one of the reputed international container terminal operator, is in the fray for the development of a second container terminal in the Tuticorin Port Trust.

Senior officials in the DP World said the company had participated in the bid in association with Chettinad Logistics.

As a terminal, Tuticorin is the third largest terminal in the country with a potential for further growth and the company is keen to participate in that growth prospects.

courtesy:hinduonnet.com,dated apr11,2006

05/06/2006:
SPIC to merge Tuticorin Alkali Chemical

courtesy:http://economictimes.indiatimes.com dated may31,06.

Fertiliser major Southern Petrochemical Industries Corporation (SPIC) has announced the merger of Tuticorin Alkali Chemicals and Fertilisers (TAC), an associate company, with itself. TAC is a leading manufacturer of soda ash and ammonium chloride in the country. It also produces a wide range of bio-products, as SPIC does.

The merger decision, which is expected to bring in synergistic benefits in respect of technical, financial, marketing and human resource aspects, was approved by the boards of SPIC and TAC at their meetings held on Tuesday.

The merger would be with effect from April 1, ’05, after shareholders’ approval and sanction of the Madras High Court. Upon merger, TAC shareholders would receive five equity shares of SPIC for every eight equity shares held by them.

“SPIC and TAC have products complementing each other and cater to a common customer, the farming community. Merger of the two companies would ensure a high level of synergy in operations and growth, facilitating a wider product catalogue and customer reach, post-merger”, said SPIC’s Vice Chairman, Mr. Ashwin C Muthiah, justifying the move.


23/12/2005:

INFRASTRUCTURE at the Tuticorin port should be enhanced on a fast track to make it a hub port, according to the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

Along with the speedy implementation of the Sethusamudram Ship Canal Project, the government should take up the special economic zone project at Tuticorin to exploit the emerging opportunities in exports, logistics and service-oriented industries, it said in a press release.

In a recent study on Industrialisation of Southern Districts in Tamil Nadu, the CII said that creation of a hub port would encourage the development of hinterland, service industries and enhance the competitiveness of export-oriented units by reducing the cost of imports.

The port, which has been growing at an annual growth rate of 6 per cent in the last nine years, should speed up the completion of projects, including construction of a north cargo berth to handle bulk cargo and development of a limited outer harbour -blonnet.com



22/12/2005:
Trade Fair-2005

The fifth edition of `Trade Fair-2005,'organised by the All India Chamber of Commerce and Industries, will begin at the V.O. College grounds at Tuticorin on Thursday,Dec-22,2005.

The fair ends on Dec- 31.

Sources said the fair, which was conducted with a motto of `meet the challenges of globalisation', would feature IT and industrial products in Block `A', automobile components in Block `B' and household and consumer electronics in Block `C.'

Altogether 114 stalls would be established at the grounds.

Automobile manufacturing giants like Ashok Leyland, Maruti and Eicher confirmed the participation, the sources said.

courtesy:hindu.com

11/12/2005:
Features of Foreign Trade Policy highlighted

A one-day workshop on `Foreign Trade Policy -2004-09,' organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Tuticorin, for exporters and industrial houses, was held here on Saturday.

Delivering the keynote address, S. Murugappan, Chennai-based lawyer and consultant on FTP, said the `Target Plus' scheme, which was incorporated into the FTP for 2004-09, would be an incentive for the exporters to get `certificates' that could be used to set off the duties.

"The firms/groups which had exported 20 per cent more than the targets achieved over the previous fiscal could avail these certificates," he said.

He said the exporters could now import machineries with reduced duty rates under the Export Promotion Capital Goods scheme, which would help them render value-addition to their produce and thereby fetch better unit value realisation in the foreign niche markets. While explaining the salient features of the `100 per cent Export Oriented scheme', he said a firm could import anything, including raw materials, machineries, etc., without paying duties, on the condition that the inflow of foreign exchange obtained through the sale of their finished produce should be more than the quantum of money spent on the procurement of raw materials and gadgets.

He said complying with the requirements of various schemes, the country should work towards capturing at least one per cent of the world trade value by 2007. He spoke about the Duty Entitlement Pass Book Scheme, Duty Free Replenishment Scheme and the Special Economic Zones. D. R. Kodeeswaran, secretary, ICCIT, and exporters and importers were present.
courtesy:hindu.com ,dated 11/12/2005



27/02/2005:
Tuticorin trade for an export oriented Budget:

INDUSTRIALISTS and traders in Tuticorin expect the Union Finance Minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, to present a Budget that augments buoyancy in the export front and gives a boost to industrial activity in the area.

According to the Secretary General of the All-India Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Raja Sangaralingam, port charges such as wharfage, which are very high at the moment, need to be reduced. Tuticorin airport needs to be reactivated otherwise the export potential of the town could get hindered. Mr D.R. Kodeeswaran, Secretary of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the proposal for establishing a Special Economic Zone near Tuticorin should be expedited, as it would become a destination for industrial investments.

courtesy:hinduonline.com dated 27/02/2005

08/12/2004
TMB AGM Meeting in Tuticorin in Dec24

The Management and shareholders of Tamilnad Merchantile Bank (TMB) can expect a stormy annual general meeting,scheduled to take place in Tuticorin on Dec24, with a section of shareholders planning to raise issues relating to voting rights and corporate governance

The shareholders have to cast their votes on the resulotions relating to the appointment of three directors and changes in the articles of association of the Nadar community promoted bank

courtesy: The Economic Times dated 08/12/2004
19/10/2004:
Tuticorin customs H1 revenue up by 31%
Customs has earned a revenue of Rs 422.67 crore as against Rs 323.78 crore last year.

The performance is up by 11 per cent over the target of Rs 380 crore for the first half of the current fiscal. Also, a sum of Rs 198.20 crore, involving 35,850 duty draw back claims, has been settled in this financial year.

The import revenue of Rs 108 crore collected in August this year is the highest revenue collected in a month. Goods valued at Rs 1.27 crore have been seized in September and the materials included thermal fax paper, aluminium paste etc.

Courtes:blonnet.com , dated 19/10/2004

04/05/2004:
India will `eventually' catch up with China: ADB economist
source:http://www.thehindubusinessline.com dated 04/05/2004
India will catch up with China by the year 2020 in terms of economic growth on the strength of its better efficiency of investments, an Asian Development Bank economist has said.

"India also has an edge over China in service sector", ADB Chief Economist Mr Ifzal Ali, who has taught at Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad and the Delhi School of Economics, told a press briefing here yesterday.

Asked whether India would ever catch up with China, Mr Ali replied, `Eventually yes'.

He said the current volume of investment in India could not be compared with that in China - in China it is 40 per cent of the GDP, while in India it is 22 per cent.

"However, the efficiency with which investment is used is higher in India than in China", he said. The implication is that India is less resource-intensive than China.

Mr Ali did not foresee India becoming the manufacturing platform for the world like China but New Delhi has a comparative advantage over Beijing in the service sector, which is already 50 per cent of the GDP against 22 per cent of the GDP in China.

India's GDP will continue to be half that of China for the next 5-10 years. But China's growth rate will start to go down while India's will go up; so `if you are going as far as 2020, yes' (India will catch up), he said


13/03/2004:

Tamilnad Mercantile Bank AGM okays accounts for 6 years, dividends

THE shareholders of Tamilnad Mercantile Bank approved dividends ranging between 70 per cent and 80 per cent for the seven years from 1996-97 to 2002-03 at the annual general meetings held in succession here in Tuticorin.

They voted on adopting the profit and loss account for1996-97, after a section of the shareholders declined to approve the accounts for the year. The results are yet to be announced. However, the accounts for the subsequent years were approved.

A separate vote was held on selecting directors to the 10 vacancies on the board. Results are expected in a day or two, according to officials.

Addressing the meeting, the bank's Chairman, Mr R. Natarajan, said that the bank is set to report a net profit of Rs 80 crore for 2003-04. It is taking steps to contain non performing assets (NPAs) to less than 5 per cent by 2005.

TMB's deposits had increased to Rs 4,084 crore for 2002-03, up from Rs 1,258 crore in 1996-97. Its net profit in this period had increased to Rs 64 crore from Rs 34 crore, an annual growth of about 15.86 per cent.

Its treasury operations launched in February 2003 are set to contribute about Rs 12 crore to profits in the current year, he said.

In an informal chat with reporters, who referred to the shareholders' concern on the rising NPAs, he said that these were on the downtrend.

For instance, in September 2002 the gross NPAs were around 19 per cent and had been brought down to 15.5 per cent.

By March 31, the NPAs would be about 14 per cent. The bank is looking at diversifying operations and its performance would improve.

The shareholders could not take up resolutions to enable the bank to enter into areas like insurance following an order of the Company Law Board. However, the way would be clear by September when the AGM for 2003-04 would be held.

With the vacancies on the board filled following the elections, the bank can chart out plans for expansion and growth.

At the AGM, shareholders approved a dividend of Rs 7on a share of Rs 10 (70 per cent) for 1996-97; Rs 7.50 (75 per cent) for 1997-98, 1998-99 and 1999-2000; and Rs 8 (80 per cent) for 2000-01, 2001-02 and 2002-03. www.thehindubusinessline.com-12/03/2004



17/02/2004:
TMB issue:Pact signed for share Transfer:

REPRESENTATIVES of the Nadar community entered into an agreement on Monday with Mr C. Sivasankaran, Chairman of Sterling group, to buy 34 per cent of the equity of Tuticorin based Tamilnad Mercantile Bank from him.

Eight individuals of the Nadar community signed the agreement with nominees of Mr Sivasankaran. The agreement was signed in the house of the Deputy Prime Minister, Mr L.K. Advani, where Mr Venkaiah Naidu, General Secretary, Bharatiya Janata Party, was also present.

According to the agreement, Mr Sivasakaran will sell 95,418 shares of the bank to the eight individuals, for a consideration of Rs 130 crore.

According to sources in the know, the money will have to be paid to Mr Sivasankaran by December this year. However, the transfer of shares will not wait for the money to be paid, it will be effected immediately. But the shares will be pledged back to Mr Sivasankaran and will be released only after the Rs 130 crore is paid.

The buyers of the shares will have voting rights, as soon as the transfer is effected, sources said.

With this, the entire 67 per cent stake in the bank held by Mr Sivasankaran, will come into the hands of the Nadar community. Earlier, members of the community, through the Nadar Mahajana Bank Share Investors' Forum had bought 34 per cent stake for Rs 81 crore.

Courtesy: http://thehindubusinessline.com dated 17th Feb.


10/02/2004:
the golden rules of good business manners: "IMPACT"
I -
Integrity - act in an honest and truthful way
M -
Manners - never be selfish,boorish or undisciplined
P -
Personality - communicate your own values,attitudes & opinions
A-
Appearance - always present yourself to best advantage
C-
Consideration - see yourself from other persons consideration
T -
Tact - think before you speak

Boorish - ill-mannered


28/01/2004:
Tuticorin port is offering to facilitate iron ore exports,especially to China.This offer is for Bellary-Hospet iron ore exporters as a short term option.

Port trust chairman,Mr.Raghupathy ,also added that the port is also geared up to handle cruise vessels.Much awaited ferry service between Tuticorin and colombo could increase the chances of cruise vessels.

Mr.Raghupathy said that a concept papaer for the port based SEZ is submitted to the state government.Agro based,ore-based,gen&Jewellary units,value addition centers for garments and an IT-park are among the investment opportunities suggested for the SEZ. --Courtesy: The Financial Express - 28th JAN


21/01/2004:
T
he one MW ocean thermal power project designed by the National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT) with technical inputs from Saga University of Japan, at Tuticorin is likely to be commissioned soon. The project envisages generation of power from the difference in seawater temperature at a depth of 1000 meters and on the surface. ...source:financialexpress.com (dec-6th edition)

08/01/2004:

More on Sensex:

Sensex,the commonly used name for the Bombay Stock Exchange Sensitive Index - an index composed of 30 of the largest and most actively traded stocks on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).

Basics of Sensex:

1. "Sensex" is the popular name for the Bombay Stock Exchange Sensitive Index.

2. It is the oldest stock market index currently in use.

3. Sensex is the index of market capitalisation.

4. The base value is 100 on April 1, 1979.

5. Sensex consists of only 30 representative stocks.

6. These 30 are the most active and representative stocks selected from over 6,300 scrips that are listed on the BSE.

7. The total market capitalisation of these 30 stocks accounts for more than 38 per cent of the aggregate market capitalisation of all BSE stocks.

8. The Sensex composition is modified by the BSE authorities at irregular intervals, to keep it in tune with the latest realities of the market.

9. A major reshuffle took place in the Sensex on August 19, 1996, when 15 stocks were replaced.

10. On April 10, 2000, four stocks were replaced. Satyam Computer, Zee Telefims, Dr. Reddy's Labs, and Reliance Petroleum have been included in place of Indian Hotels, Tata Power, Tata Chemicals and IDBI.

Sensex calculation

1. Market capitalisation is the market value of equity shares, (i.e. market price multiplied by the number of shares). For instance: if ACC has an equity capital of Rs 1.72 billion with each share having a face value of Rs 10 and its closing price on BSE on April 10, 2000 was Rs 166, then ACC's market capitalisation on that date is 17.234*166/10 = Rs 28.61 billion.

2. Calculate market capitalisation of all 30 Sensex stocks on a particular date in the same manner and add this up to get the total market capitalisation of Sensex stocks.

3. Assume that this total market capitalisation is equal to the closing Sensex value on that particular date. The Sensex of any future date can be calculated as a proportion of market capitalisation applied to this Sensex value.


Courtesy:www.rediff.com/money/2000/apr/26sspe.htm
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05/11/2003:
Vehicle Tracking system comes to TN:
BOW Network (P) Ltd, named after Bharat on Wheels, has launched a vehicle tracking system targeting Tamil Nadu's transport industry

To facilitate easy access to the system, BOW has built a vast network of franchisees and tracking points in the national and state highways. The company's software division has built the system based on an Interactive Voice response System to track vehicles and send messages. The system functions without any additional gadget fixed to the vehicle.
The information furnished by the truck driver from BOW tracking points will reach the nearest Area Franchisee system online, where the data compiling and transmission takes place. Subsequently, this information reaches the BOW servers through the Internet. This one-time information given by the driver will be made available to consigners, consignees, transport companies, agents, vehicle owners and individuals who are concerned with the vehicle or the consignment. ..www.thehindubusinessline.com



04/11/2003:
SEZ Rules Put off again..

 The government has once again put off implementation of the rules and regulations regarding special economic zones till December 1, mainly due to reservations expressed by several units on certain aspects of these rules. The Council for EOUs and SEZs, however, wants the government, in the meantime, to consider framing such rules for EOU units as well after the SEZ rules have been made effective. Implementation of the SEZ rules, originally scheduled for August 15, was first postponed to October 15...more

07/10/2003
Employment 2010 and the seven Trends:
A study conducted by Totus Consulting firm...more on this - thehindubusinessonline.com(07/10/03)

02/10/2003:
Rs 15,000-cr Golden quadrilateral, port link project — Rlys searching for pvt consultant

FOR the first time in its history, the Railways is looking at a private consultant for advice. The consultants, who are to be selected shortly, would advise the Railways on the Rs 15,000-crore Golden Quadrilateral and Port Connectivity project being executed by Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd (RVNL). .
.more

22/09/2003:
"India is still a best bet for outsourcing"

Cost of operations in India are 37 per cent lower than in China and 17 per cent lower than in Malaysia.

Manpower costs were 61 per cent lower than China and 48 per cent lower than in Malaysia. On the rentals front, costs in India were a third of China's while they were on par with Malaysia's. --> Ms Sanjukta Pal, Principal Consultant, PricewaterhouseCoopers, - thehindubusinessonline.com



18/09/2003:

TN's Industrial policy will lower production costs:

THE Tamil Nadu Government's industrial policy which looks to upgrade transport infrastructure such as airports, seaports and major traffic corridors would help lower transaction costs for the manufacturing industry, thereby lowering production cost, the Tirupur Exporters Association (TEA) has said.

Welcoming the policy, TEA has said the Government's plan of enlarging the State electricity board's generation capacity by 30 per cent to reach 8,250 MW would bring succour to the power- intensive industries. ---> Courtesy -The Hindu Business Line


02/09/2003:

I
ndia remains the prime destination of outsourcing for the American companies as the country turns out 75,000 English- speaking IT professionals every year and has a low wage structure, a study has said ...more on this