Biz Check: Hits & Misses Of 2014
For India Inc, 2014 had been a year of transition, hopes and expectations. But not everyone could hit the bull’s eye this year. As 2014 closes, BI India lists down corporate honchos those who hit the mark and those who didn’t. So here goes the list:
Hits of 2014: Ratan Tata
Hits of 2014: Ratan Tata
He may have
retired from his company, but the man was in news for all the right reasons. With
a hawk eye for booming business, Tata has been betting big on e-Commerce sector.
He has made investments of undisclosed amount in online retail firms such as
Snapdeal, Urban Ladder and also ventured into online jewellery segment by
investing an undisclosed amount in Bluestone.com. He was truly an angel
investor to these budding companies.
Image Credit: Indiatimes.com Anand Mahindra
2014 was a
happy year for Anand Mahindra as his Group’s IT arm Tech Mahindra cracked a
major deal. It acquired US based Lightbridge Communications Corporation for
$240 million, thus cementing its position in the US IT market. Apart from a
successful acquisition, the company also got the prolonged approval from the
government to introduce its Australia made aircraft in India. The company had
bought an Australian aerospace firm and was already selling its aircraft in the
US market while flying in the Middle East and Australian skies.
Image Credit; Indiatimes.com Advertisement Azim Premji
The 69 year
old tycoon is still going strong in 2014 and has some major plans for his
enterprise. After investing in the e-Commerce sector (fashion website
Myntra.com and e-tailer Snapdeal), Premji is eying a 5% stake worth Rs 600
crore in India’s second largest insurance giant HDFC Life. Apart from these,
Azim Premji’s private equity firm, Premji Invest, also forayed into real estate
sector by closing a $10 million bulk-buying apartment deal. Besides, the
company has already obtained RBI’s approval to directly invest in tech
companies located in China and the US.
of online marketplace Snapdeal.com has been going great guns this year. The
company raised nearly $1 billion and some of the big investors on board. Some
of them include Ratan Tata, Azim Premji and Softbank. The e-Commerce giant had
an aggressive expansion plan, which included expanding their product portfolio
and entering new partnerships. The company has had a special focus on SME
sector and carried out several initiatives to promote the growth. The website
also registered overwhelming response for all its sale offers.
Advertisement Sachin and Binny Bansal
Sachin and Binny Bansal
of Flipkart.com, one of the pioneers of e-Commerce sector, have had a mixed
year. Despite facing a few hiccups like an alleged raid on the warehouse and a
severe backlash from shoppers on social media (remember the Big Billion Day
fiasco); the company has managed to win the trust of its investors and raised
funds worth $500 million to $ 600 million from its third round of financing.
Besides, raising funds for itself, the company also gave wings to another Chennai
start-up, Ather Energy, and invested $1 million in it recently. The firm has
also been in the news for offering the highest number of jobs to IIT graduates.
Image Credit: Indiatimes.com Miss of 2014: Subroto Roy
Miss of 2014: Subroto Roy
patriotic business tycoon has been in trouble since a long time, but his
troubles reached the peak when he was arrested and put in jail in March 2014.
Since March, Subroto Roy is desperately trying to raise funds, Rs 100 billion,
in order to obtain his bail. He has been trying to sell three of his luxury
hotels, but the deal is still hanging in the air. Besides, most of his projects
are in doldrums including the launch of his ambitious by-invitation luxury
stores in these iconic hotels. Most recently, Sahara had to sell its Gurgaon
land for Rs 1,211 crore in order to raise funds for Sahara chief Roy.
Image Credit: Indiatimes.com Advertisement Jignesh Shah
considered to be the superstar of the financial market, Jignesh Shah has now
13,000 families chasing him for their money. Shah, the founder of Financial
Technologies (India) Limited (FTIL), has now been deemed as unfit to run one of
the biggest commodities Exchange following the Rs 5,600 NSEL scam. Shah had to
sell stakes in almost all the companies he once invested in and has now
resigned from the Board of FTIL too. With no end in sight for the NSEL scam,
Shah certainly cannot look forward to a bright 2015 either.
The king of
good times has been severely criticized for his lavish lifestyle even when the
employees of Kingfisher airlines have been running pillar to post to get their
long-pending salaries. Mallya has been declared as a willful defaulter by
United Bank of India and more recently declared United Breweries Holdings
Limited as a willful defaulter as well. Other public sector banks such as State
Bank of India and Punjab National Bank too have served him with notices. The
company has failed to raise funds to pump into his defunct airline and has still not paid his employees.
Image Credit: Indiatimes.com Advertisement KP Singh
estate mogul and the chairman of DLF Limited carried forward Robert Vadra land
deal controversy in 2014 as well. DLF has been accused for rolling out
unsecured interest free loans to Congress Party chief Sonia Gandhi’s
son-in-law, Robert Vadra. The company got another hit when market regulator SEBI
barred the company from entering the capital market for three years. This development has only multiplied problems
for Singh, who will face a hard time raising funds via bank loans. His company
will not be able to raise funds through Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITS),
as it comes under SEBI’s purview.
Image Credit: Indiatimes.com Arun Sawhney
The CEO of pharma major Ranbaxy respectively, has had a hard time in 2014. The
company was first hit when US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) banned imports
from the company’s Punjab manufacturing unit after it found serious violations.
The American health regulator also withdrew the tentative approvals granted to
Ranbaxy for producing two generic drugs. The company had also filed a lawsuit
against FDA, which was rejected by the US court. More recently, news reports
suggested that drugs manufactured in its Dewas plant in Madhya Pradesh, has
been barred in Germany and other EU markets.
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