The 15th Finance Commission will submit recommendations for six financial years, marking only the second instance of the Constitutionally-mandated panel giving proposals for Centre and state finances for more than five years. The 9th Finance Commission, headed by N K P Salve, had proposed a six-year road map as the government had argued that it coincided with the five-year plan cycle. This time, the bifurcation of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh and their conversion into Union Territories forced an extension in the panel’s tenure with the government arguing that the extension will enable it “to examine various comparable estimates for financial projections in view of reforms and the new realities to finalise its recommendations for the period 2020-2026”.
Ola plans to slash jobs
Ride-hailing major Ola is planning to cut its workforce by around 15-20% over the next two quarters in a bid to improve margins and move towards profitability, sources said. Ola is estimated to have around 5,800-6,000 people on its payroll, including group companies - Ola Electric Mobility and Ola Financial Services, where about 8-10% of the employees could be redeployed besides laying off over 350-400 people. The development comes as Ola, run by ANI Technologies, reduced its losses by 57% to £116 million during FY19 from £267.6 million in FY18. The company saw its standalone revenue growing by 26% to £188.5 million at the end of March 2019, according to its filings with MCA. Valued at around $6 billion, Ola plans to go public in around two to three years and being profitable before filing for an IPO is a desirable situation.
HDFC forms panel to name Puri’s successor
HDFC Bank board has constituted a six-member sub-committee to identify a successor to Aditya Puri current MD of the bank, whose term ends on October 26, 2020. The bank has also elevated as directors two senior executives - Sashidhar Jagdishan and Bhavesh Zaveri. Jagdishan is currently group head of finance, HR, legal & secretarial, administration, and infrastructure. Zaveri is currently group head of operations, IT and cash management. The search panel comprises the bank’s chairperson Shyamal Gopinath and other directors. A statement issued by the board said that the search committee, over the next few months, will evaluate both internal and external candidates to ensure smooth transition.
Govt mops up £72.9 mn from stake sale in RITES
The 10% offer for sale of RITES was fully subscribed with disinvestment proceeds of £72.94 million. “The government undertook offer for sale (OFS) in RITES on November 22-25. The base offer was fully subscribed,” said the department of investment and public asset management (DIPAM). Railways consultancy firm RITES was listed on the bourse in July 2018, after it raised about £46.6 million through an initial public offering (IPO). The government has so far garnered £ 1.74 billion from disinvestment, but around 82% (£1.44 billion) of it has been accrued from the ETF funds and not from stake sales, showing that the reliance on funds has worked well for selloff as a strategy. The Bharat 22 ETF under its second offer mopped up £436.9 million and CPSE ETF under FPO sixth tranche collected £1 billion in this financial year, according to the DIPAM data.