News in numbers, Nov 19, 2015: Ola’s raises $500 mn, Kashmiri migrants’ rehabilitation…



What is it? Share of its total external funding ($1.3 billion) that cab aggregator Ola has raised in the last one year ($1.2 billion).

Why is it important? Ola took three years to reach the $1 billion valuation mark, but just about a year to hit $5 billion. This assumes importance given the concerns in some quarters about the sustainability and profitability of India’s unicorns such as Ola, Flipkart and Zomato.

Tell me more: On Wednesday, Ola raised $500 million in fresh funds from investment management firm Baillie Gifford, China’s largest taxi hailing service Didi Kuaidi and existing investors Falcon Edge Capital, Tiger Global, SoftBank Group and DST Global.


$28.8 billion

What is it? The amount by which the turnover of Apple in Greater China exceeds its turnover in India, according to company filings.

Why is it important? In 2014-15, the maker of iPhones and iPads reportedly crossed $1 billion in revenues in India, with a doubling of revenues in two years. Despite this scorching growth, Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook has, in the past, expressed impediments to business caused by a multi-layer distribution channel.

Tell me more: In 2014, Apple recorded $29.8 billion in revenues from Greater China, $14.9 billion from Japan, $10.3 billion from the rest of Asia-Pacific. Its revenues in the US stood at $65.2 billion and in Europe at $40.9 billion.


Rs 20,000 crore

What is it? The amount the government is seeking to raise from a 10% stake sale in state-run Coal India, which the Cabinet approved on Wednesday

Why is it important? If the government is able to raise this, it would reach at least about 47% of its disinvestment target of Rs 69,500 crore for 2015-16. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has admitted it is difficult to achieve the disinvestment target this year with low commodity prices impacting share valuations. Coal prices have tumbled to new lows in recent times due to slowing demand.

Tell me more: So far, the government has raised Rs 12,701 crore (18.3% of its target) by selling stakes in Power Finance Corporation, IOC, Rural Electrification Corporation and Dredging Corporation. If the disinvestment target is missed, it would be the sixth year in a row.



What is it? The increase in value of assets held by investors in mutual funds between September 2014 and September 2015, to Rs 12,93,633 crore, according to data from Association of Mutual Funds in India (Amfi).

Why is it important? It is in this backdrop that the mutual fund is seeing its second change of ownership in 2015. On Wednesday, Invesco bought out the 51% stake of its local partner, Religare, in Religare Invesco Asset Management Company. Earlier this year, Reliance Mutual Fund bought Goldman Sachs Mutual Fund.

Tell me more: The growth in the mutual fund industry, in general, has failed to make a satisfactory business case for many mutual fund hopefuls, including prominent foreign names like Deutsche Bank, PineBridge and ING in recent years.


Rs 2,000 crore

What is it? Amount to be used for rehabilitating Kashmiri migrants, a proposal approved by the Cabinet on Wednesday.

Why is it important? An estimated 450,000 Kashmiri migrants, along with some Sikh and Muslim families, fled the Kashmir Valley when militancy reared its ugly head more than a couple of decades ago. But only one Kashmiri Pandit family has returned to the Valley in 25 years. Also, of the 3,000 state government jobs to be provided, only 1,963 posts have been filled. This shows the previous rehabilitation package of Rs 1,618 crore sanctioned in 2008 has not worked, raising questions if additional funding would do anything to improve the situation.

Tell me more: The new package is aimed at providing an additional 3,000 state government jobs with financial assistance and transit accommodation to Kashmiri migrants.

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News In Numbers – July 24

News In Numbers: July 24


Rs 70,000 crore

The cumulative unsold inventory of India’s major listed real estate firms as of March 2015, which is an increase of 23% from a year ago. This is nearly equal to the combined net sales of these companies in 2014-15. Between 2010-11 and 2014-15, house price inflation peaked at 28% during 2012-13, only to slide to below 4% in the third quarter of 2014-15. As real estate prices cool off across cities, people seem to be preferring financial assets such as mutual funds over physical ones such as gold and property.



The share of algorithmic orders—orders determined, sometimes even generated, by a computer programme, as opposed to by human beings—in total orders on Indian stock exchanges. It is also the share of algorithmic orders in cancelled orders. In June, India’s central bank, taking note of such high numbers of automated orders, raised “concerns relating to systemic risks”. Yesterday, UK Sinha, head of the capital market regulator, said it was considering several measures to reduce risk in algorithmic trading. Such high-speed trading formed the backdrop to Flash Boys, the 2013 book by Michael Lewis that argued several Wall Street players were using it to game the market.


Rs 21,641 crore

Total revenue (excise plus sales tax) earned by the Tamil Nadu government from the sale of liquor in 2013-14. Recently, DMK chief M Karunanidhi promised to implement prohibition in the state if voted to power in the state elections in 2016, a complete U-turn on his party’s liquor policy. Some of the important schemes and subsidy programmes cost the Tamil Nadu government nearly Rs 27,000 crore, and a total prohibition is likely to hit the state’s finances, affecting these initiatives. The government expects over a fourth of its tax revenue in 2015-16 from TASMAC, a state-run chain of liquor shops.


$880 million

The amount that Indian pharma major Lupin is paying to acquire New Jersey-based GAVIS. At about Rs 5,600 crore, this is the largest acquisition by an Indian pharmaceutical company in the US. Lupin is paying over nine times the annual revenue of GAVIS. This is Lupin’s fifth foreign buy in less than 18 months. Four major pharma companies–Lupin , Cadila Healthcare, Torrent Pharmaceuticals and Aurobindo Pharma–have plans to raise a combined Rs 22,600 crore, mainly for acquisitions.



The number of vacancies for the post of independent directors on the boards of 32 public sector companies, including Coal India, ONGC and IOC. Since the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance came to power in May 2014, 106 independent directors have resigned or completed their terms. BHEL is the only PSU to appoint an independent director during this period. Last year, the market regulator had stipulated that boards of all listed companies should comprise at least 50% non-executive or independent directors, with at least one woman director.
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News in Numbers – June 10, 2015



In another round of de-registrations, the Indian government has cancelled the licence of 4,470 non-governmental organisations (NGOs). The list includes the names of prominent entities such as the Supreme Court Bar Association, Escorts Heart Institute, Panjab University (Chandigarh) and Gujarat National Law University. The Ministry of Home Affairs has cancelled the registration of these entities due to non-filing of annual returns and other irregularities. The new round of cancellation began on May 6 and 971 organisations (the highest number of such entities) were de-registered on June 9. Here is the link to a data story we did on NGOs receiving notices from the government and the foreign funding tangle.

1 lakh

Over 1,00,000 people have been affected by floods in Assam, a north-eastern state in India, this year. The flood has claimed the lives of two people since Monday. Heavy rains in the last three days have increased the water levels of Brahmaputra river and its tributaries, submerging many areas in the state. The districts of Tinsukia, Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Sonitpur, Darrang, Baksa, Nalbari, Barpeta, Bongaigaon, Goalpara, Kamrup (Metro) and Jorhat, have been affected by the floods. Take a look at some of the major disasters in India and the number deaths and victims.


Only those restaurants with air-conditioning (AC) facilities will charge service tax and the others cannot, the Ministry of Finance clarified on Tuesday. And, the AC restaurants will charge only on the 40% of the total bill amount. This clarification comes in when there is confusion over the levy of service tax and complaints of higher charges, after the increase in service tax to 14% (from 12.26%) came into effect from June 1. The effective service tax rate for eating out in an AC restaurant will be 5.6% of the total food bill when compared to the earlier rate of 4.94%.

For instance, if A’s bill at an AC restaurant is Rs 1,000 (including the service charge), then the effective service tax levied would be 5.6% of the total bill amount (5.6% of Rs 1,000), which is Rs 56. Before June 1, A would have paid Rs 49.4 as service tax, the increase being Rs 6.6 on a total food bill of Rs 1,000.


$1.6 billion

India’s equity mutual funds (MFs) have received net inflows of around $1.6 billion in May, marking the 13th consecutive month of positive net inflows into the equity MFs. This adds up to $14.9 billion or Rs 91,800 crore. A Deutsche Bank report released on Tuesday said this is almost equal to net cumulative inflows since January 2002 to April 2014 (over the last 12 years), on a nominal basis.



The Indian Army’s Special Operations Forces killed about 36 militants and destroyed two terror camps “in a hot pursuit” along the India-Myanmar border on Tuesday. The army men were targeting militants who were responsible for an ambush on an army convoy and killing 18 soldiers in Manipur last week.


Re 1

In a different way of getting people use the public toilet facilities instead of defecating in the open, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation has announced a scheme titled ‘Use and Get Paid’. The conventional way is the user would have to pay to use the public toilet facilities but the local body of one of the largest cities in Gujarat has turned it around. Not all the users will be paid (Re 1) but those who defecate in the open would be sensitised and rewarded for using the public toilets. The municipal corporation has identified 1,200 such people and the list would be revised on a regular basis.About 40% of people defecate in the open in Gujarat and the percentage of people defecating in the open in Ahmedabad is much lower at 13%, as per the 2011 Census data.

Twitter: @Howindialives

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News in Numbers – June 8, 2015


Rs 19 crore versus Rs 445 crore

The amount spent by Nestle India on “quality testing” versus the amount it spent on “advertising and sales promotion” last year.  In other words, the company has spent 19 times more on promoting its brand than on performing tests in the laboratory to test its products’ quality. A look at the numbers in the past five years reveals the same trend: Nestle India has spent Rs 12-20 crore for quality testing and about Rs 300-450 crore for the latter.

Rs 23,118 crore

People who do not belong to any state or union territory in India own Rs 23,118 crore investment in equity mutual funds. That’s about 7% of the total assets under management (AUM) in the mutual fund sector in India. The market regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), had made it mandatory for the declaration of state-wise assets every month. The 7% of the investments is shown as originating from “others”, despite the clear geographical demarcations. Experts say this could be due to improper implementation of KYC (Know Your Customer) norms, where the name of the state and pin codes are mandatory.


The dividend payment ratio (share of net profit given as dividend) of the BSE-100 companies in 2014-15 was 34.52% – the highest in at least the last 11 years. Of these 100 companies, the dividend payment ratio of 76 private companies was again the highest since 2004-05 while that of the 22 public sector companies was the second highest in 11 years. The main reasons for this include: not much use in saving money for capital expenditure in an economic situation with less demand, some companies not having seen good growth in their profit or earnings numbers.

89 versus 62

India ranks 89 (of 143 countries) in the global Network Readiness Index of the World Economic Forum, a poor performance when compared to China’s 62nd position. On nine factors (such as political and regulatory environment, business and innovation environment and government usage except for affordability. For instance, in terms of “individual usage”, 45.8% of the Chinese population use the internet and in contrast, the same number for India is 15.1%. India’s patent application figure pales in front of China’s: in China, there are 13.7 patent applications for every 1 million people whereas in India, the equivalent figure is 1.5.

Rs 1 lakh crore

The Union Ministry of Shipping is planning to raise Rs 1 lakh crore to “develop ports, build ships and improve inland waterways”, besides also considering to set up Ports Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation to fund ports and shipping infrastructure in dollars. Nitin Gadkari, the Union Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping said the ports would be constructed with increased handling capacity and each port would be developed with a 20-meter draft (“draft determines the minimum depth of water a ship or boat can safely navigate”). This would ensure the ports do not spend on dredging, thus increasing their revenues.

‘Bonus’ Numbers

30 minutes

HDFC Bank Ltd, the second largest private sector lender, plans to disburse auto loans in 30 minutes. It aims to do this using the biometrics technology, which would be linked to the loan applicant’s Aadhaar card number and would be used to pull up his/her profile. After securing additional details, the loan would be approved. For two-wheelers, it would take even lesser time – about 10-15 minutes. According to HDFC Bank, it has a share of 31-32% in the car loan segment and 22-23% in the two-wheeler loan segment. It believes its quick auto loan approval process would help it to increase its market share in this segment. It had earlier rolled out a service where the bank had promised to approve a personal loan in 10 seconds.


Nestle India, which owns the Maggi brand, is probably facing one of the worst crises ever. But this article, with the help of a few charts, says that not all is lost for the company and that it has done well until the recent controversy broke out. Nestle India’s share has gained 22.4% in the last one year compared to the 9.5% gain of the FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) sector. This, despite the fact that the company has been battling a decrease in volume and sales growth. Following the ban, the company had recently recalled the product off the shelves, which has put 20% of its revenue at risk.

Twitter: @Howindialives


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