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APRIL 22, 2007
 Cover Story
 BT Special
 Back of the Book

Mobile Security
Today, it is all about information and how the right information is sent to the right people at the right time and right place. Uncertainty about how to secure mobile phones in the face of increasing threats is slowing individual adoption of mobile applications. There are many facets of mobile security, including network intrusion, mobile viruses, spam and mobile phishing. Analysts expect big telecom companies to develop security solutions on various security platforms.

Rough Ride
These are competitive times for the Indian aviation industry. As salaries zoom, players are scrambling to find profits. Even the state-owned Indian is now seeking young airhostesses to take on the competition. It is planning to introduce a voluntary retirement scheme for airhostesses above 40 years. On an average, they draw a salary of Rs 5 lakh a year. The salaries of pilots, too, are soaring. According to industry estimates, the country needs over 3,000 pilots over the next five years.
More Net Specials

Business Today,  April 8, 2007

Analjit Singh: Another controversy

He is a minority shareholder in the company but thanks to the controversy surrounding his stake, Analjit Singh, 62, is easily hogging more limelight than the company's new owner. Singh owns a 7.58 per cent stake in Hutchison Essar through a special purpose vehicle, Telecom Investments India (Hutchison Essar, MD, Asim Ghosh, is the other shareholder in the company). The allegation is that Singh and Ghosh are fronting for Hutchison Telecom International, which recently sold out to Vodafone.

India Slides Down
INDIA TODAY To Launch Paper

Singh, in fact, is the original promoter, having set up the company, then called Hutchison Max, when the mobile telephony sector was first thrown open to the private sector. He sold his 41 per cent stake to this partner in 1998 for a then eye-popping sum of Rs 561 crore and re-entered the scene in 2005 when he and Ghosh jointly bought out Kotak Mahindra's stake in the company. The genesis of the current controversy lies in the structure of that deal. Singh took a loan from Rabobank India to finance his acquisition, with Hutchison as guarantor. This guarantee will now be transferred to Vodafone. Does that make first Hutchison and now Vodafone the beneficial owners of these shares? The FIPB has asked for a copy of the sale agreement and other documents to verify the financing of these purchases.

But Singh is not new to controversies and is quite adept at sorting them out as well. When the controversy over his father, the late Bhai Mohan Singh's will erupted, he quickly settled the issue with his nephews Malvinder and Shivinder Singh and their mother, his sister-in-law. He will obviously be hoping for a similar quick end to this controversy


163 million: Total teen population of India. Nearly half of India's 1-billion-plus population is under the age of 20. By 2015, the under-20 crowd will make up 55 per cent of all Indians.

2.3 million: The expected strength of Indian IT/BPO workforce by 2010

1 million: The number of tourists expected to visit India during the 2010 Commonwealth Games to be held in New Delhi

15,000: Number of jobs banking major Citigroup is planning to cut in the US. This will represent a 5 per cent reduction in Citigroup's worldwide workforce of 327,000

Rs 3,700 crore: BSE's daily turnover in 2006-07. The corresponding figure for NSE is Rs 8,000 crore

39 kg: India's annual per capita steel consumption. Compared to this, the global average annual per capita steel consumption is 150 kg

500,000: The total number of jobs expected to be created in aviation, hotels and tour operating services because of the Commonwealth Games in 2010, according to Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry

250 million: Total number of users for Yahoo! mail worldwide, the highest among all e-mail service providers. Microsoft's Windows Live Mail has 228 million users, while Gmail has 51 million users

Rs 14.03 crore: Anil Singhvi's earnings for the 18 months ended December 31, 2006, as whole-time Director and MD of Gujarat Ambuja Cements. He is thought to be the highest-paid professional MD in the country

16 lakh: The number of people living in penury in Delhi; the figure is a tenth of the city's population

$43,000 (Rs 18.92 lakh): The price of Warren Buffett's Lincoln Town Car. It's not exactly a typical billionaire's car and is as common as a taxi in Queens and the Bronx


PLANNED: By the Securities and Exchange Board of India, regulations for investment advisors. Sebi chief M. Damodaran said: "We are working on regulations for investment advisors." Sebi will undertake a detailed consultative process to arrive at laws for the purpose.

ANNOUNCED: By German technology major Infineon and Hindustan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation, a company founded by NRIs from Silicon Valley, plans for a $4-billion (Rs 17,600 crore) Fab City in India. Chip-maker AMD and Semindia, a consortium of NRIs, is also setting up a Fab City in Hyderabad.

RANKED: On Forbes' elite list of 2000 corporate giants around the world, 34 Indian companies. ONGC leads the pack of Indian companies (at #239), followed by Reliance Industries (#258), State Bank of India (#326) and Indian Oil (#399). Tata Consultancy figures at #1,047 on the list. Bharti Airtel is the only Indian telecommunications company to find a place among the 2,000 giants with a rank of #1,149

HIKED: By 19 per cent, Japan's official development aid for 2006-07 to India to Rs 7,000 crore. The assistance will be used to fund 11 projects in the infrastructure and environment sectors, including Phase II of the Delhi Metro Rail Transport System.

TIED-UP: The Hinduja Group and Dubai World, owned by Dubai government, for a foray into healthcare. The JV, in which the Hindujas will hold a 51 per cent stake, will invest $1 billion (Rs 4,400 crore) over the next three years to build hospitals, diagnostic training and clinical research facilities in Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, and other cities.

INKED: Between Satyam Computer Services and Applied Materials Inc, a $200-million (Rs 880 crore), five-year deal under which the former will manage the nanotechnology supplier's computer network in a "managed services delivery model".


Here's another warning that bad infrastructure can trip up the growth of India's fast-growing it industry. According to the WEF Global Information Technology Report 2006-07, India has slipped four places on the Networked Readiness Index to #44. Denmark and Sweden are in first and second places, respectively. If it's any consolation to India, China has fared even worse on the index, sliding nine places to #59. "Notwithstanding some specific clusters of ICT excellence in both countries (India and China), their performance, overall, in leveraging ICT for increased development appears to be particularly hindered by weak infrastructure, with a very low level of individual ICT usage for India and of individual and business readiness and usage for China," the report states.


A new deal: Beatty (L) and Purie

The INDIA TODAY group will shortly launch a mainstream English daily in partnership with Associated Newspapers, a subsidiary of Daily Mail and General Trust Plc (DMGT), which publishes the Daily Mail. This partnership will include equity participation by Associated Newspapers within the country's current laws on foreign ownership in media and "will involve an exchange of experience, ideas, talent and where appropriate, content". This was announced on the sidelines of the India Today Conclave held in Delhi recently.

An Associated Newspapers press release quoted Kevin Beatty, Managing Director of that company, as saying that the India Today Group "really understands the dynamism of the media landscape in India and will make an excellent partner".

Aroon Purie, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, India Today Group, said: "We have for some time now felt that there was a huge opportunity for a new English language daily newspaper. Even though the market is very competitive, we are confident that, with our new partner, we will be able to publish a newspaper well differentiated from those that are already available."

DMGT is one of the largest and most successful media companies in the UK and publishes, besides the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday, The Evening Standard, Metro, London Lite and Loot.