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News Digest: Fortis open offer, Rs 100-bn digital boost for NE, and more

BS Web Team/New Delhi 11 Aug 18 | 11:57 PM

Investors want higher price in Fortis open offer

Investors in Fortis Healthcare are said to be negotiating for a higher open offer price ahead of the company’s extraordinary general meeting (EGM) on Monday.

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On July 13, Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare Berhad outbid the Manipal-TPG combine to win the race to acquire Fortis Healthcare (FHL). According to IHH’s binding offer, it will invest Rs40 billion in the cash-strapped hospital chain via preferential allotment at Rs170 a share.

Many feel that the stock has the potential to see an upside and can touch Rs240-250 levels within a year of the IHH deal going through. So they want to wait and not tender their shares in the open offer. The stock closed at Rs142 on the BSE on Friday. Read more 

Wrangler owner looks to exit jeans business

VF Corp, owner of Lee and Wrangler jeans, is exploring strategic options for its denim business that could include a sale or spin off of the classic American brands, according to people familiar with the situation.

The apparel conglomerate has owned Wrangler and Lee for decades and they were once its core, but the company’s jeans sales have slowed in recent years as more women opt for yoga pants or premium denim brands like J Brand or Frame. Read more 

Innovate or stagnate: PM at IIT-Bombay

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday called Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) instruments of transformation that had created a global brand for the country and helped innovation, necessary to prevent the stagnation of a society. He was addressing the 56th annual convocation of IIT-Bombay (IIT-B).

Modi also called for a collective effort to improve the quality of higher education in the country. Read more 

Northeast to get Rs100-bn digital boost by 2022

Aiming to make the Northeastern states of the country digitally empowered, the government plans to invest close to Rs100 billion (Rs97.61 billion to be specific) by 2022 on 415 projects in the region. The investments will go towards telecom infrastructure, BPOs, electronics manufacturing, digital payments, start-ups and cyber security.

This is part of the NDA government’s vision document for ‘Digital North East 2022’, which was unveiled at a mega event here on Saturday. The document refers to around 50 digital initiatives planned for each state in the region. Read more 

  

MF distributors challenge Morningstar MD to a debate

A body of financial advisors and distributors on Saturday challenged Morningstar India’s Managing Director Aditya Agarwal to a debate in any public forum to bring out the “true picture" of expense ratios.

The Foundation of Independent Financial Advisors (Fifa) was reacting to Agarwal’s remarks on a social media platform, that “individual investors’ interests have always been our true north and we will be delighted when India truly becomes the third least expensive country".

In the Morningstar Global Fund Investor Experience report 2017, India turned out to be the second most expensive country for equity mutual funds, of the 25 countries that were reviewed. Morningstar classified India in the “below average" category in the fees and expenses scorecard. Read more 

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