News in brief: Business & Economy
New York Yankees and Dallas Cowboys have joined Goldman Sachs and private equity firm CIC
Partners to form a food and retail company called Legends Hospitality Management that will offer a broad
range of sports business services with an initial focus on operating catering, concessions, retail
merchandising and other facility management enterprises for major sports and entertainment facilities.
Tata Group chairman Ratan Tata has donated $50 million to his alma mater, the 143-old Cornell
University in New York where he graduated as an architect in 1959. The endowment consists of $25 million
to establish the Tata-Cornell Initiative in Agriculture and Nutrition. The other $25 million is set for the
Tata Scholarship Fund for Students from India, to help attract more of the best and brightest students to
Cornell from India.
LexisNexis Butterworths of Britain has merged with law book publishers Wadhwa of Nagpur.
The Communist Party of China (CPC) issued a policy document on to allow farmers to "lease their
contracted farmland or transfer their land-use right" to boost the scale of operation for farm production
and provide funds for them to start new businesses.
Tanishq Jewellery of the Tata Group launched a new collection for the festive season called Aleya.
Tata Chemicals will pick up 35% stake in JOil (Singapore) Pte Ltd, a jatropha seedling company set up
by Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory Ltd.
Femina has changed its positioning from "The Woman of Substance" to "Generation W".
Coca-Cola India has launched a communication initiative, 'Deep Jala Ke Dekho'.
Utility vehicles maker Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd has launched Scorpio and Bolero variants fitted with the
FuelSmart system that enables the engine to automatically switch off when idle, for instance at traffic lights,
or when the vehicles are in neutral gear, and restart once the driver releases the clutch pedal.
Bloomberg News has filed a suit in a New York court under the 'US Freedom of Information Act' against
the US Federal Reserve after it refused to disclose the names of those it has loaned money from the over $2
trillion emergency bailout funds set up from US taxpayer's money.
Bata India Ltd is venturing into the direct marketing sphere with the launch of Bata Direct distribution
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A professor at Carnegie University in the US, Scott Fahlman is credited to have been the inventor of the
smiley emoticon in 1982, when he first used colon, dash and brackets as part of expressing his feelings on
the university's electronic message board.
Shemaroo Entertainment has launched its first three titles–'Downfall', 'All About My Mother' and 'Amen'
under its World Cinema label.
Fiama Di Wills has launched Shine In Style, a new shampoo variant, expanding its premium range of
shampoos to five.
ITC Welcomgroup, the Hotels Division of ITC Limited was conferred the NCPEDP-Shell Helen Keller
award for the third time in recognition of its substantial contribution to the cause of promoting employment
opportunities for differently abled people over an extended period of time.
Bangladesh's government launched its tourism brand name 'Rupomoy
Bangladesh' (Beautiful Bangladesh) in a bid to attract tourists from home
Dooars and Terai tea, which account to about 30% of the total tea produced in India, can now be
distinguished by its new brand mark - an elephant standing against the backdrop of tea bushes.
This is the fourth tea logo in the country. Tea produced in Assam, Darjeeling and the Nilgiris already have
their own logos in place.
Coca-Cola is getting into the unsweetened, flavoured-water category with the launch of Dasani Essence
that will have no sugar, no calories and no preservatives. PepsiCo offers Aquafina FlavorSplash, which is
also a no-calorie and all-natural drink, though it contains preservatives
Italian eye-wear major Luxottica is venturing into the Indian market and plans to set up exclusive outlets
under the brand name Sunglass Hut.
Harlequin Mills & Boon India, one of the world's leading publishers of romance, has started a short storywriting
contest, called Passions, exclusively for India.
Compact Disc India (CDI) will invest $63 million for an animation feature film and multi platform gaming
project with legendary Brazilian footballer Pele.
Barclays of UK has become the first bank in Europe to pilot Microsoft Surface technology, which will allow
users to 'grab' digital content with their hands and navigate for information about premier banking with
simple gestures and touches.
The Microsoft Hyderabad campus has kicked off its annual 'Giving' campaign and community week that
encourages employees to take up social initiatives throughout the year.
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Apple Inc., maker of the iPhone and iPod Touch media player, filed a patent application for software that
lets users control computers and phones using swipes of their fingers. Apple's system would allow users to
insert spaces, line breaks and uppercase characters by swiping the screen rather than pressing keys,
according to the application titled "Swipe Gestures for Touch Screen Keyboards."
India is now the world leader in production of organic cotton with an output of 73,702 tonnes in 2007-08
according to Organic Exchange's Organic Cotton Farm and Fibre Report 2008
NXP Semiconductors India has developed a solution based on RFID (Radio Frequency Identification)
technology that will help oil companies prevent commercial use of LPG cylinders meant for homes.
Shipping Corporation of India's new VLCC (Very Large Crude Carrier) 'Desh Viraat' collided with a small
cargo vessel on its maiden journey off Korea.
Religare Enterprises has agreed to acquire Lotus India Asset Management Company from the majority
shareholders, Alexandra Fund Management, an affiliate of Singapore-based Fullerton Fund Management
Company Ltd and India-based Sabre Capital.
The Advani Pleasure Cruises operated 'The Carvela', launched in 2002, was the first offshore casino in
The Hotel Leela Ventures-operated 'Rio' became operational in 2008 while Goa Coastal Resorts and
Recreation's Pride of Goa and the Victor group of Hotels' Kings Casino commenced subsequently.
Casino Royale, operated by High Street Cruises and Entertainment that opened in Oct 2008, is the latest
to join the fleet anchored in the Mandovi River.
MTV India is planning to enter the stationery segment in collaboration with Ballarpur Industries Ltd to
launch a rage of notebooks and diaries under the MTV brand. Collaboration with the jeans wear brand of
Wrangler to manufacture helmets under the MTV franchise is also on the cards. MTV is using its highest
TRP-driven programme — Roadies — and building it as a mini sub-brand.
MTV has already launched a line of clothing called MTV Gear by licensing its brand to a Bangalore-based
clothing manufacturer (Primus Clothing).
Haier Mobile has launched its Icon series handsets under the brand name 'Sumukha' for Tata Indicom.
After the introduction of Barish Bima Yojna (BBY) for kharif crops in 2004, Iffco-Tokio General Insurance
Company evolved a variant of its weather insurance product — Mausam Bima Yojna (MBY) — recently.
After 'Aamchi Mumbai', 'Hamaari Delhi' and 'Namma Bengaluru' campaigns, digital imaging company
Canon India launched 'Namma Chennai'. The initiative is aimed at reaching out to regional markets which
have been the company's focus to garner better market share.
Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni will now be endorsing Dabur's Chyawanprash already being
endorsed by Amitabh Bachchan.
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The Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) has been authorised by the Department of Industrial
Policy & Promotion (DIPP) to collect production data from industrial units on its behalf for compiling the
new series of Index of Industrial Production (IIP). Production data relating to 209 products is compiled by
DIPP for the IIP. The remaining data is collected by the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) from other
In a bid to bring smaller players on the electricity trading platform, the country's first power bourse — Indian
Energy Exchange (IEX) — has lowered the minimum tradable volume under the day-ahead market to 1
mega watt (MW), from the earlier limit of 10 MW.
B Ramalinga Raju, Founder-Chairman of Satyam Computer Services, has received the Frost and Sullivan
Excellence in Leadership Award for 2008 in November 2008.
Indo-Russian joint venture Ural India Ltd and Chinese public sector automobile company First Auto Work
(FAW) signed a memorandum of understanding to form a small car and bus manufacturing unit in West
Chennai-based Exim Rajathi has entered into an agreement to export tea to Pakistan where it is being
marketed under the brand 1013 Janoowala and sold in countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq and even as far
Man Booker Prize 2008 winner Aravind Adiga has decided to donate a part of his prize money to his alma
mater St Aloysius College of Mangalore to start a special scholarship for the higher education of underprivileged
Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palaces has launched two new 'Safari' destinations in the forests of Madhya
Pradesh–Pashan Garh and Banjaar Tola in Panna National Park and Kanha National Park respectively.
The automotive aftermarket division of Bosch, which at present has 250 outlets offering after sales services
for all brands of cars under the business unit Bosch Car Service, is mulling options to offer after sales
service for two-wheeler of all brands.
Wipro Furniture has launched a new range of office furniture — I'M, which, the company claims, is India's
first Leg and Beam based system.
Larsen & Toubro and Malaysia-based Scomi Engineering will together build the country's first monorail
system in Mumbai.
BSA Motors, a new business unit of Tube Investments of India (part of Murugappa group), has launched
five models of eScooters and has signed on South Indian actress Tamannah Bhatia to endorse the brand
MMTC Ltd has bagged the Capexil (Chemical and Allied Products Export Promotion Council) award for
17th time in a row.
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Oil and Natural Gas Corporation has signed an MoU with Uranium Corporation of India for joint
cooperation in uranium exploration and development.
Sterlite Industries has bagged the CII-EXIM Bank Award for Business Excellence at the 16th CII Quality
Summit held at Bangalore.
Satyam Computers, the official IT services' provider for FIFA World Cup in 2010 (South Africa) and 2014
(Brazil), will organise the Satyam Football Challenge every year in India.
Novatium Solutions has partnered with BSNL to bundle its Nova netPC along with broadband connection.
Sify Technologies has announced revamped mail service from Sifymail called WIYI (World In Your
Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, the country's first greenfield airport developed under the publicprivate
partnership initiative, was inaugurated at Shamshabad near Hyderabad.
Japan's largest mobile operator NTT DoCoMo (acronym for Do Communications Over the Mobile Network)
picked up a 26 per cent stake in Tata Teleservices (TTSL) for a consideration of $2.7 billion or Rs 13,070
NTT DoCoMo offers its services and data applications under the brand i-mode and is known for its mobile
applications such as 'Imadoco' and 'Osaifu-Keitai'. The first one is a service that allows the user to know
the exact location of his friends and family using GPS on mobile phone while the latter is a mobile commerce
Survey of India (SoI) has entered into an agreement with Tele Atlas Kalyani India (TAKI) to allow it to
release SoI-approved digital maps of India. TAKI, formerly Kalyani Net Ventures Ltd, is a 60:40 joint
venture between Tele Atlas Asia Pacific and the Kalyani Group formed in April 2008.
HCL Infosystems has launched the HCL Leaptop Series 39 laptop, which are specially designed for Indian
Paramount Airways has launched its 'frequent flier' programme and packaged it as a 'lifestyle product'
in which points accumulated can be redeemed for a variety of lifestyle products such as golf course
memberships. The airline has also launched 'Royale Concierge' — a portal through which a frequent flier
could avail himself of a range of services.
The Kandla-based Jaisu Shipping and Tata Consultancy Services have joined the Volvo Ocean Race
India Stopover Team as sponsors, supporting the hosting of stopover event, being hosted by Cochin Port
Trust and Kerala Tourism.
Dr Reddy's Laboratories has launched an initiative called Roshni to create awareness on diabetes among
the public and facilitate early intervention for children by propagating healthy living habits.