Andy Mukherjee (for Info only, not official)

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Andy Mukherjee

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    ...Unlike his predecessor, who got into a messy skirmish with the firm’s still-powerful co-founders, Parekh will have some latitude to choose his strategy. For one thing, he has the right experience, having spent 25 years at Ernst & Young LLP, then at Capgemini SE, where he oversaw the integration of IGate Corp. IGate’s 100,000 people in India gave the French consulting firm the low-cost execution capability it needed to venture beyond Europe. North America is now Capgemini’s largest market, where Parekh leads the fight against International Business Machines Corp., Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. and Accenture Plc, as well as the Indian players. That gives the 53-year-old intimate knowledge of the traditional offshoring industry and the existential threat it faces from so-called SMAC -- social, mobile, analytics and cloud computing. ...

    Live Mint on Dec. 4, 2017, 1:05 p.m.

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    ...Or that’s the carefully crafted image projected by the world’s priciest lender. Assiduously shielding its loan book from the flying debris of India’s $207 billion bad-debt crisis, HDFC Bank Ltd has kept its balance sheet in a near-pristine condition. The aura of invincibility bestowed by a 1.26% soured-loan ratio—compared with almost 10% for State Bank of India and 25% for IDBI Bank Ltd — also explains why HDFC Bank has a price-to-book multiple of 5.2. Among lenders with at least $50 billion in market value, anywhere, none is as expensive. So it was a surprise last month when HDFC Bank reported a hefty provision against an unnamed corporate account that it said wasn’t a non-performing asset, then one day later marked the loan down to NPA because the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the regulator, had told it to do so. The matter would have rested there, were it not for an independent banking analyst, Hemindra Hazari. ...

    Live Mint on Dec. 4, 2017, 8:44 a.m.

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    ...Since with most of the country’s $207 billion of impaired loans, there’s no proof of malfeasance by the controlling shareholders—or promoters as they’re known in India—they would be allowed to make an offer to creditors, just like buyout firms, vulture funds and other interested parties. Alas, a day later there’s an unpleasant twist in the tale. New Delhi chose to pass a stricter law, barring all promoters whose firms have run up non-performing loans for a year or more (and who are unable to settle the overdue amounts) from repurchasing assets. In the 12 largest bankruptcies currently before the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), involving $31 billion in creditor claims, the founders will have to sit out. The billionaire Ruia brothers can kiss their Essar Steel Ltd goodbye. Unless the law is successfully challenged, they won’t be able to win back their steel plant. ...

    Live Mint on Nov. 24, 2017, 9:51 a.m.

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    ...Mint India’s fledgling bankruptcy regime is turning both karmic and American. Eat, pray, love; applaud the shift. The government tweaked the 2016 insolvency law on Wednesday to disallow managements that have been “willful defaulters” from bidding for their own assets. That weird term has been defined by the central bank as instances where borrower firms didn’t repay while having the capacity to do so, or their controlling shareholders siphoned off money or assets. None of the 12 largest ongoing corporate bankruptcy cases, representing almost a quarter of the soured debt for the country’s banking system, involves wilful defaulters. Their businesses got into trouble, as the likes of Essar Steel Ltd have claimed, because of extraneous circumstances: How do you make sponge iron if the government cuts off the pledged supply of domestically produced gas? ...

    Live Mint on Nov. 23, 2017, 1:08 p.m.

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    ...This isn’t the plot of yet another sequel to Jeffrey Archer’s Kane and Abel, though it could very well be. Mukesh Ambani, India’s richest man, sold 10-year dollar notes at just 130 basis points over US Treasuries on Monday. None of the existing debt of Indian non-financial issuers, including state-owned firms, was raised this cheaply, according to Bloomberg News reporters Carrie Hong and Neha D’silva. Moreover, Reliance Industries Ltd’s $800 million offer came days after a default by Reliance Communications Ltd, run by Mukesh’s younger sibling, Anil Ambani. My apprehension that global investors would paint all Reliance bonds with the same brush—and punish the older brother for the younger’s missed coupon—turned out to be unfounded. ...

    Live Mint on Nov. 21, 2017, 11:59 a.m.

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    ...For the Prime Minister, whose party faces an important poll in Modi’s home state next month, the one-notch rating bump to Baa2 by Moody’s Investors Service is an early Christmas present. More importantly, the rationale for the upgrade cites two of his most destabilizing measures of the past year — demonetisation and a national goods and services tax — as ingredients of a reform program that may have upset the economy temporarily, but should improve its shock-absorption capacity eventually. While Moody’s is being too charitable to last November’s whimsical scrapping of 86% of currency in circulation, to be able to take such a ringing endorsement to voters in Gujarat is a big plus for Modi. But Saint Nicholas isn’t coming early only for him. Even the bond market gets something to cheer about, just as rising oil prices were beginning to make investors nervous. India’s economy runs on imported crude, while duties and taxes on petroleum grease government budgets both in New Delhi and in 29 states. ...

    Live Mint on Nov. 17, 2017, 1:56 p.m.

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    ...Abhijit Bhatlekar/Mint Amazon.com Inc. had better watch out. The $200 billion e-commerce market Morgan Stanley is forecasting for India by 2027 just got a new contender—with a very different plan. Energy tycoon Mukesh Ambani has already disrupted the country’s telecom industry. His next big foray may be online retail. But India’s richest man may not create a marketplace of his own. According to an Economic Times report, Ambani’s Reliance Industries Ltd wants to leverage its Jio wireless service and hand out digital coupons, which customers can then use to get discounts at their neighbourhood stores. Why is this a smart move? There are clues in Morgan Stanley’s research. India has 432 million internet users, but only 60 million online shoppers. The e-commerce industry, including online food delivery, is just $15 billion a year, or 40% less than Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s Singles’ Day sales in China. ...

    Live Mint on Nov. 17, 2017, 9:18 a.m.

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    ...Mint In the annals of economic experimentation, India’s cash ban will stand out. Not because it was ill-advised, poorly executed or unsuccessful in achieving its original aims. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s move to outlaw 86% of his country’s currency a year ago today was all those things. What made it remarkable, though, was the way it flew against the zeitgeist. While the US, Europe and Japan have been fixated for the better part of the last decade on ways to put more money in people’s pockets in order to put idle resources to work, India—with significant slack of its own—decided to go the other way, and freeze out a bulk of its citizens’ purchasing power. What was supposed to be a surgical strike against tax cheats and counterfeit currency became an attack on a large informal economy that ran almost entirely on cash. ...

    Live Mint on Nov. 8, 2017, 8:38 a.m.