India Inc. Top Picks: Inbound Deals of 2016

India Inc. Top Picks: Inbound Deals of 2016
India Inc. Top Picks: Inbound Deals of 2016

As the fastest growing large economy in the world, India was the destination of choice for investments from across the globe in the year just gone by. 'India Investment Journal' reviews some of the key inbound investments that poured into the country in this New Year deal tracker. Uber eyes $3.5bn investment potential

US-based taxi hailing company Uber has described India as its second-largest market after the US where it is looking to drive into even more cities. Christian Freese from Uber in India said the company is looking at creating critical mass in order to sustain the momentum. He said: “We are now in close to 30 cities in India and will grow deeper into the existing service areas first. In the next phase, we will expand further into more cities, which will happen in the mid -end of the next year.” In 2015, Uber had announced an investment of $1 billion in India to expand its services. In 2016, it raised $3.5-billion funding from Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund - with a substantial portion reserved for its India expansion plans. Vodafone plans $3bn equity infusion

Vodafone India, the country's second-largest telecom operator, has revealed aggressive investment plans for its networks over the next year. Vodafone India chief executive Sunil Sood said: “Data is next big opportunity. We will double our network rollout target this year together with partner Nokia. A massive amount of money will go out in next 12 months. “We are rolling out networks and executing it as per aggressive targets were given by our global chief executive.” The UK-based telecom giant has indicated that the upcoming investment would take place across 3G and 4G technology network rollouts. In September the firm said it was up to $3-billion in equity infusion in its India unit to replace debt. China's Sany Group in $4bn India spend

China-based heavy equipment major Sany Group has plans to ramp up its presence in the country and will be taking its overall commitment in India to $4 billion. The firm plans to set up manufacturing units and wind farms in India and has set its sights on the top spot in the construction equipment space in the country. Deepak Garg, director and chief executive officer at Sany Heavy Industry India, said: "We want to be the number one in five years in construction equipment in India. We will be growing more than 60 per cent year-on-year.” Tang Xivguo, president, Sany Group, said: "We have already invested $100 million in our plant in Pune and are looking at taking our investment in the country to the tune of $1 billion over the next 10 years." The company has interests in heavy equipment, port machinery, energy and technology solutions. Shanghai Fosun buys Gland Pharma

In what was described as the largest Indian corporate takeover by a Chinese company, Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group Co. unveiled plans to buy Indian drugmaker Gland Pharma Ltd. for no more than $1.26 billion. Fosun Pharma will acquire 86.08 per cent of Gland Pharma, according to a statement filed with the Shanghai Stock Exchange. Fosun Pharma plans to borrow up to $800 million from financial institutions to help fund the purchase. The transaction would Shanghai Fosun to gain control of a new stable of injectable medi-cines as well as manufacturing facilities in India. UAE's Lulu Group invests in stores

UAE-based Lulu Group, a retail chain of hypermarkets, announced investments worth around $751 million (Rs 5,000 crores) in India by 2020. A majority of the funds will be used for setting up shopping malls in the country, including mega shopping complexes in Chennai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Thiruvananthapuram. Yusuff Ali MA, managing director of Lulu Group, said: “The business environment in India has improved significantly. A lot of restrictions are removed to facilitate investment. The best thing the new government has done to treat all NRI investment as domestic invest-ment." The group has 124 shopping malls globally, with operations in 30 countries, including Bah-rain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Yemen, among other countries, and em-ploying 35,000 people. The company′s annual turnover is approximately $5.5 billion. China's SAIC finalises $1bn plan

China's largest automaker SAIC Motor (formerly Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation) is finalising plans to invest around $1 billion in India by 2018. It would look to manufacture products that would suit local tastes and can also be exported. Governments of three states - Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu - have al-ready made presentations to the company, with proposals of hosting its manufacturing unit. SAIC has products across categories and owns the brands Maxus, MG, Roewe and Yuejin. It also has a number of joint ventures with General Motors, Iveco, Skoda Auto and Volkswagen. The full details of this deal will become clear in 2017. Juniper in $1bn Digital India move

US-based Juniper Networks is planning to invest around $1 billion in its Indian operations to tap into the opportunities arising as a result of the government's Digital India pro-gramme. Juniper Networks' global chief executive Rami Rahim was quoted as saying that the firm intends to continue to invest in India with “at least another $1 billion or so” over the next few years. Juniper offers software-defined network solutions, routers and switches to telecom ser-vice providers and large enterprises including government departments, and competes with Cisco, Ciena and Hewlett-Packard, among others. The NYSE-listed company has invested $1 billion in India in the past six years, mostly on research and development, and has about 2,600 workers in the country across locations including Bengaluru and Delhi. Canada firm clinches SBI deal on assets

Brookfield Asset Management Inc, among the world's largest alternative asset man-agers, has signed a memorandum of understanding with State Bank of India to set up a joint venture to invest in stressed assets in India. The Canadian asset manager will invest around $1 billion into the venture and SBI would contribute 5 per cent of the total investment. Brookfield will be in charge of managing the recapitalised businesses. Brookfield, with $240 billion in assets under management with focus on property, renewable power, infrastructure and private equity is expected to play an important role in helping banks with bloated non-performing assets. SBI chairman Arundhati Bhattacharya said: “This approach of collaborating with global players will enable the banks in general and, SBI in particular, to find alter-nate solution for resolution of stressed assets.” Fosun International plans $1bn spend

Chinese conglomerate Fosun International is making an entry into the Indian real estate space and plans to invest close to $1 billion through a real estate private equity platform it is setting up here, according to Indian media reports. The diversified investments firm will first start with buying income-producing rental assets in the country. Founded in 1992 in Shanghai, Fosun International is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The group has annual revenue of $12 billion and profit of $1.2 billion, according to 'Bloomberg' data. Guo Guangchang, chairman of Fosun, is nicknamed China's Warren Buffett as the country's 17th richest person with a net worth of $5.6 billion. Wal-Mart eyes food entry

Wal-Mart India is evaluating an India-specific model of entry into the retailing of processed foods. The move follows the Indian government's liberalised policy of allowing 100 per cent for-eign direct investment (FDI) in trading of food products produced and manufactured in In-dia. Krish Iyer, president and CEO of Walmart India, said: “We are currently evaluating all the policy guidelines and we do not have an 'only food model' anywhere. So, we need to concep-tualise, evaluate and come up with a model, which takes time. “It is not something we will jump into very quickly.” The retailer runs 20 stores in the cash-and-carry format in nine states across the country. In the next five years, it is planning to add 50 more stores, taking the total to 70 as part of an omni-channel strategy. The US-based retailer is in the process of signing up more properties for this expansion and is also said to be in talks to invest as much as $1 billion into India's Flipkart Online Services Pvt. China's Holitech to invest $1bn

China-headquartered Holitech Technology, a maker of LCD and touchscreen panels used in mobile phones, plans to invest $1billion in India in 2017. Bingshuang Chen, chief executive of Holitech Technology, said: “We are looking at the sup-ply chain here and how mature it is. “From our point of view, next year [2017] will be best time for us to enter the country... It (investment) could be as big as $1billion considering the requirement of facilities, equip-ment and all other technical aspects.” The Jiangxi-based component maker is among the several mobile phone manufacturers and component developers in China. EXIM Bank raises $1bn from overseas bonds

Export Import (Exim) Bank of India has announced that it has raised $1 billion (about Rs 6,700 crore) by selling bonds to overseas investors. Initially announced for $500 million, the issue was upsized to $1 billion based on strong demand from the investors, Exim Bank said in a statement this week. The issue attracted a total order book in excess of $2.50 billion from over 157 investors. This was the largest issuance ever for Exim Bank and also the largest single tranche is-suance out of India in 2016. Exim Bank chairman and managing director Yaduvendra Mathur said: "The bank is the closest proxy to sovereign in the international markets and the 10-year issuance was based on investors′ feedback, so that benchmark 10 year curve out of India could be es-tablished." I Squared Capital invests $1bn

I Squared Capital, the US-based private equity (PE) firm, has plans to invest around $1 billion in Indian infrastructure. The company will invest in infrastructure projects for roads and rooftop solar power pro-jects. It will also infuse some of the funds allocated for road assets into the logistics business and warehouses. Gautam Bhandari, partner, I Squared Capital, said: “While we don't have country specific allocations, we can see ourselves putting somewhere from $500-600 million to a billion dol-lar plus in the country over the life of our fund. If the right opportunity shows up, then we can transact at that scale.” The company has already invested $150 million in three major Indian road projects through its investment platform Cube Highways and Infrastructure (P) Ltd. Cube Highway also plans to venture into logistics business, warehousing and wayside amenities, looking to convert two of their roads to intelligent highways. Equis to double India's renewables

Equis Pte Ltd, a Singapore-based company, plans to invest $1 billion in the Indian re-newable energy sector over the next two years. This will double the country's portfo-lio to nearly 2GW of wind, solar and hydro energy installations. Currently, the developer-cum-investor holds 3.6 GW of renewable energy in India, Japan, the Philippines and Thailand in its portfolio and has raised $2.67 billion of eq-uity since 2011. David Russell, chief executive officer, Equis, said: “We should be looking to invest another $1 billion into the Indian renewable energy market and we think that's very feasible considering our position.” The asset developer has approved equity commitments of $630 million to India in the last four years. Gujarat to become Suzuki hub

Gujarat is set to become the global production hub for Maruti Suzuki. The automotive firm's new Ignis will be produced and exported from the Sanand plant in Gujarat, making it the global production hub for the car to be launched in India in the festive season. The car is to be marketed as a hatchback-crossover, with its production-ready con-cept showcased at the 2016 Auto Expo. Meanwhile, a new plant in Mehsana, Gujarat, is expected to start production in full flow from January-February, 2017. The plant will manufacture the Maruti Suzuki Baleno and the new-gen Swift Dzire, to be debuted in 2018. Suzuki is working on new diesel engines, to be unveiled when the new cars are launched. UK's Lightsource eyes Solar India

Britain's solar company Lightsource Renewable Energy is aiming to develop 1GW of solar projects in India in the next two to three years. According to Rupesh Agarwal, managing director and head of India operations at the company, that level of installations will represent $943 million of investment. Agarwal said: "We are eyeing 1000 MW of solar power projects in the country, which is bare minimum in the backdrop of government′s ambitious target of adding 100,000MW by 2022. We would like to do even more than targeted 1000MW in coming years depending on the auctions of these projects.” Lightsource plans to secure projects through competitive bidding and is unlikely to form partnerships for the execution of the projects. Lightsource recently secured its first project in India, of 50 MW, in a tender in the state of Maharashtra. Chinese consortium acquires Media.net A consortium of Chinese investors acquired ad-tech venture Media.net for about $900 million in a rare reverse merger deal being touted as the largest in the sector. India's Media.net develops products for advertisers as well as publishers, providing them with an entire suite of services, including creating, targeting and evaluating advertising campaigns, as well as connecting publishers through their Yahoo-Bing network. The all-cash deal was said to override other acquisitions, including Google′s buyout of AdMob for $750 million in 2010, followed by Twitter′s acquisition of MoPub for $350 million three years later. US firm to set up urea plant in Maharashtra

A yet-to-be-named US firm is expected to invest nearly $1 billion (Rs 6,000 crores) to set up a urea plant at Bhadrawati in Maharashtra. Indian minister for transport Nitin Gadkari told reporters: “Negotiations with the con-cerned company have reached final stages and a number of meetings have been held with chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union minister of state for home Hansraj Ahir, who represents the area (Chandrapur district). "A final meeting with WCL [Western Coalfields Limited] and all concerned ministers and officials is scheduled later this month and it (the deal) will be finalised within a month." The Maharashtra government has already allotted a piece of land to the firm and WCL has agreed for coal linkage to the proposed plant. USAID, ADB to invest in solar parks

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to facilitate $848 million (Rs 5,681 crore) in funding to develop solar parks across India. Through the agreement, USAID will align the technical resources of two of its pro-grammes to support ADB's investments in the development of solar parks and renewa-ble energy transmission infrastructure in states at the forefront of India's efforts to pro-mote clean energy. The collaboration will initially focus on the state of Rajasthan. MasterCard to invest $800mn

MasterCard, the global real-time payment processing firm, has plans to invest $700-800 million in India over the next four years. Porush Singh, country head, MasterCard India, said that the major portion of the pro-posed investment, which is double the $400 million it has invested in India from 2014 till date, will go into processing, mobile technology and solutions and data analytics. He said: “We are pretty confident of the Indian market, which is why we are looking to make this level of investment (in the next few years).” The company will partner with the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) for increase of card usage in the country. In last two years, MasterCard helped 200 million people in 55 countries come into the financial system and plans to reach up to 500 million by 2020. Singtel to acquire Bharti Airtel stake

Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (Singtel) has signed an agreement to acquire 7.39 per cent stake in Bharti Telecom Limited - the holding company of Bharti Airtel in In-dia, via Temasek Holdings, which holds majority stake in Singtel, the company said in a statement. The deal valued at around $659.51 million will allow Singtel to further strengthen its holding capacity in India via Bharti Airtel, which is India's largest telecom operator in terms of subscriber base. IKEA sets for pop-up stores

Swedish furniture retailer IKEA has said it plans to launch at least 50 pop-up stores in In-dia by 2025. The pop-up Hej Homes concept comes from the Swedish word “hej” which means “hel-lo” and they are typically housed in areas with high footfall, such as malls. Hej Homes would house a cafe and a play area for children, and mirror IKEA's big box retail format in a smaller size. Ulf Smedberg, Country Marketing Manager, IKEA India, said: “The aim is to give a slice of brand to the consumers. We will be launching the first such pop-up store in Hydera-bad, where our first (regular) store is set to be rolled out.” IKEA plans to open 25 stores in India by 2025 with an estimated investment of around $15bn (RS 10,500 crores). Vivo to triple India manufacturing

Vivo claims to be the only Chinese smartphone manufacturer to set up a full-fledged manufacturing unit under Prime Minister Modi's 'Make in India' initiative. Vivo Mobile India is currently manufacturing and assembling one million units a month at its Greater Noida plant and aims to triple the production to 3 million a month in the near future. Vivek Zhang, chief marketing officer, Vivo India, said in media interviews: “We are the first smartphone player from China to set up a manufacturing unit in India. The unit caters to the manufacturing and assembling of Vivo smartphones, thus creating more employment opportunities here and reducing Vivo's dependence on imports.” The company has invested $19 million (Rs 125 crore) in its first phase in the already existing 30,000 square-metre facility at Greater Noida which became operational last year. Finland's Fortum keen on Solar India

Finland's state-owned energy firm, Fortum, is looking to invest around €200-400 mil-lion in India, which it sees among its priority market for solar projects. Fortum India managing director Sanjay Aggarwal said: “It is hard to ignore India. It is a market for large utilities like us. Fortum′s investment in solar is just in India. “The Indian risk profile suits large utilities with robust financing. The Indian market is unlikely to give favourable and quick returns to PE-backed small players. Going ahead, large utilities are the way forward.” The Finnish company has 170 MW of solar power projects in the pipeline and cur-rently has 15 MW of operational solar capacity in India. It has also won projects un-der the National Solar Mission tenders in Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu. The company is conducting studies to participate in other state government tenders for solar projects as well. Norway's Yara buys Tata Chem unit

Yara International ASA has entered into an agreement to acquire Tata Chemicals Ltd (TCL) Babrala urea plant and distribution business in Uttar Pradesh for $400 million on a debt and cash free basis, including normalised net working capital. Svein Tore Holsether, President and Chief Executive Officer of Yara, said: "This ac-quisition represents another significant step in our growth strategy, creating an inte-grated position in the world′s second-largest fertilizer market. India has strong popu-lation growth and increasing living standards, and significant potential to improve agricultural productivity." The plant has an annual production of 0.7 million tonnes ammonia and 1.2 million tonnes urea, and generated revenues and EBITDA of respectively $350 million and $35 million in the financial year ended 31 March 2016. Singapore firm plans $400mn IT park

Singapore-based business space solutions provider Ascendas-Singbridge announced plans to develop an IT Park in Gurgaon, Haryana, at a project cost of $400 million. In the first phase of development, the company would set up two buildings with about 1 million sq ft of Grade A office space, to be completed by end of this year. The International Tech Park Gurgaon (ITPG), an integrated IT park within the upcoming business district in India′s National Capital Region (NCR) was unveiled by Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister, Tharman Shanmugaratnam. The company said that ITPG will mark a major development for Ascendas-Singbridge in North India under the Ascendas India Growth Programme. Thai firm to supply food to India

Charoen Pokphand (CP) Foods, Thailand's largest meat producer, is in talks with McDonald's Corp and KFC in India to supply them with their chicken needs within the next few months, as part of a push into the Indian market. For this, the company is looking at an investment of $400 million in India in the next 20 years. Sanjeev Pant, Senior VP - Food Business, CPF (India) Pvt Ltd, the flagship unit of Charoen Pokphand Group, confirmed talks with multiple fast-food chains in India, including McDonald′s and Yum Brands' KFC. The packaged food market in India is set to increase to $50 billion by the year 2017 from around $32 billion in December 2015, according to a survey by Assocham. This is will help CP Foods increase its revenue by 20-25 per cent in the coming years. IKEA plans $300mn investment in Haryana

Swedish furniture retailer IKEA signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Haryana government with plans to invest an estimated $300 million (Rs 2,000 crore) to open its stores in the state. "IKEA India inked an MoU with the state of Haryana as a major step forward towards establishing retail stores in the state. IKEA will invest an estimated Rs 2,000 crore for its retail expansion in Haryana, will employ about 1,000 co-workers directly and engage around 3,000 more for providing services such as furniture assembly, delivery services among others," the company said in a statement. In 2015, IKEA had signed MoUs with Karnataka, Telengana, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra to set up stores and 2017 marks the year it opens its first store in India. Lenovo plans to Make in India

Chinese multinational technology giant Lenovo is in talks with the governments of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in South India to explore the prospect of setting up a manufacturing facility in the region. Lenovo already manufactures personal computers and laptops in the Union Territory of Puducherry, about 150 km from Chennai, and chief minister V. Narayanasamy said it has now shown interest in setting up a mobile phone manufacturing facility with an investment of around $298 million (Rs 2,000 crores). He told the local Assembly: "We should provide them concessions and facilities as the unit they are contemplating would provide jobs to technically qualified youth in Puducherry.” Samsung to double manufacturing by 2019

Samsung announced that it would double its smartphone production capacity in India by 2019 with an investment of around $300 million. The investment will be put towards doubling capacity at its Noida plant by the end of 2019. The company established its manufacturing plant in Noida back in 1996. The plant employs around 4,000 people and makes Samsung products like TVs, smartphones, refrigerators and more. Smartphone production is currently at 60 million units and will be doubled to 120 million units by the end of 2019. China's LeEco eyes India stores

Chinese device maker LeEco filed an application with India's Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) to seek permission for single-brand retail trading of electronic products, both through stores and an ecommerce portal. The company hopes to strengthen its foothold in India and bring in its entire line-up for Indian consumers. LeEco has sought relaxation from the mandatory 30 per cent domestic sourcing rule as part of the foreign direct investment (FDI) norms in India's single-brand retail sector. Atul Jain, COO, LeEco India, said: "India is a key market for LeEco and we plan to significantly invest in setting up our business model in the country. We have received a great response from consumers so far for our superphones and now plan to strengthen our presence in the market by opening our own stores and e-commerce portal.” Amazon invests in wholesale Amazon India has injected around $24 million (Rs 160 crore) into its wholesale business. Under its current business model, AmazonBusiness has signed up corner stores, pharmacies and small outlets to order from its platform, extending credit lines to these businesses through a partnership with banks and non-banking financial institutions. The wholesale arm of the world's leading online marketplace runs B2B selling platform Amazon Business, which includes consumer goods, food and beverages, office supplies, IT products, health and personal products and cleaning supplies. The platform also serves as a marketing and distribution channel for certain brands and ships their products. "We continue to invest in India as part of our long-term commitment but we do not comment on specific details of our investments," an Amazon India statement said. Dyson plans £154mn investment

Dyson Ltd, the UK's famous bag-less vacuum cleaner manufacturer, plans to enter India with its own retail stores by the middle of this year and invest around £154 million over the next five years. The company has already sought permission from the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) to import and sell products in the country. Founder James Dysonsaid: “If we get the permit we'll set up middle of next year. Over the first five years, we'll invest about £154 million in India. Our investment will be in building infrastructure (retail), taxes (to the government), marketing and promotions.” India will be Dyson's 76th international market. Ford starts exports from Gujarat

Ford started shipping its new Figo manufactured at its Sanand plant in Gujarat to Europe, where it will be sold as the Ka+. The move is part of the US automotive giant's plans to develop India as an export hub for its passenger car models. Ford produces the second-generation Figo hatchback and the new Figo Aspire sedan models at its Sanand plant, which is an integrated manufacturing facility. Between the new Figo and the Aspire, the production capacity for domestic and exports is 240,000 units at Sanand. The Detroit-based carmaker has invested $1 billion in the Gujarat plant as part of its goal to triple exports from India in the next five years. Dubai leisure group to invest $200mn

Dubai-based Landmark Group′s entertainment arm Landmark Leisure is planning to invest around $200 million (Rs 1,200 crore) to increase the number of its Fun City entertainment centres to 100 in India over the next five years. At present, the company has 19 Fun City centres in the country. Landmark Leisure COO Silvio Liedtke said: "Landmark Leisure will expand presence of Fun City entertainment centres from current 19 to 100 over in the next five years in India... Our per store investment will be in the range of 15-20 crore." Established in 1999 in the Middle East, Fun City runs franchises in nine different countries and India is one of its key markets, Landmark Leisure said in a statement. Toyota in $130mn investment plan

Japanese auto giant Toyota Motor Corp (TMC) has made a fresh set of investments in India amounting to around $130 million (Rs 870 crore). The company has invested in its Indian auto financing arm, Toyota Financial Services India Ltd (TFSIN), to support business expansion in the medium term. TFSIN has already used about $25.6 million (Rs 170 crores) from the $130 million. The company plans to introduce additional capital to support TFSIN′s growth plans and will raise $60 million (Rs 400 crore) through debentures to fund operations in the country. Bosch in India investment surge

German engineering major Bosch said it plans to invest around $164 million (Rs 1,100 crore) in India across its 10 group companies in 2016. The firm is also looking beyond the market for mobility in India, with energy, transportation, and smart cities among some of its focus areas. Bosch managing director and president, Steffen Berns, said: “Overall, Bosch has invested heavily on expansion. In the last four years, we have invested Rs 3,500 crore [$522mn]. This year, we will be investing Rs 1,100 crore [$164mn] across the 10 divisions of the Bosch Group.” The Bosch Group in India has more than 10 business entities, generating revenues of over $2.5 billion (Rs 17,000 crore) with 18 different manufacturing locations and over 30,000 employees, including 14,000 employed in R&D activity. Abu Dhabi invests in hospital chain

VPS Healthcare, an Abu Dhabi-based hospital chain, has acquired New Delhi headquartered Rockland Hospitals. VPS Healthcare has committed to invest about $222 million (Rs 1,500 crore) to acquire and expand Rockland Hospitals. Rockland Hospitals has three operational facilities in the National Capital Region where it also plans to set up a fourth hospital. VPS Healthcare has a network of 16 high-end hospitals and 100 primary care centres across the UAE, Oman and London. UK Fund to invest in IIFL unit

Financial services firm IIFL Holdings Ltd said the CDC Group Plc, a development finance in-stitution owned by the UK government, will invest about $15 million (Rs 1,000 crore) in its unit India Infoline Finance Ltd (IIFL Finance). CDC's investment will help the IIFL Group expand its financing business and address the cap-ital needs of under-served segments,. The proposed investment is by way of compulsorily convertible preference shares which on conversion will result in about 15 per cent equity stake for CDC in IIFL Finance on a fully di-luted basis. The proposed transaction is subject to necessary regulatory approvals. Online payment start-up eyes India

Stripe, a Silicon Valley based mobile payment start-up, is all set to enter India with a multi-million-dollar budget. The company will compete with payment solution start-ups like Razorpay, Citrus Pay, and PayU, among others in India. Stripe claims to offer easy to use and customisable payment solutions to small and medium businesses. Founded in 2010, Stripe operates in 25 countries, which include South-East Asia, the US and Europe. Schneider Electric eyes India hub

French energy management and automation major Schneider Electric wants to make India is export hub for the region. S. Nagarajan, vice-president (national sales), Schneider Electric India, said: “Schneider runs a big R&D (research & development) centre in India in Bangalore. From Karnataka, we are exporting our whole range of products to 15-20 countries. In a way, India is already an ex-port hub for Schneider and we intend to make it one.” The R&D centre in Bengaluru is manned by over 1,200 people and Schneider is eyeing dou-ble digit growth in the India market this fiscal. Cisco plans India plant

Global technology major Cisco has revealed it is working on a plan to establish a manufac-turing facility in India. Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins said the company is "very actively involved in India across the board" and working on a broader base from digitisation to smart cities in the country. He said: “Prime Minister Narendra Modi is very committed to manufacturing. We worked through a business case and... presented to him that... That was fantastic and we have been moving forward." Cisco is engaged in over 15 smart cities projects in the country. The company is also working with the Andhra Pradesh government for rolling out Bharat Net. Japan's Daikin signs up to Make in India

Japanese air conditioning manufacturer Daikin Industries Ltd's 100 per cent subsidiary, Dai-kin Air-Conditioning India, has made a big push to Make in India. Under its upcoming five-year business plan, the company is looking at setting up an R&D centre in India with an investment of $90 million (Rs 600 crores) to develop customised products for emerging markets. Around $15 million (Rs 100 crores) will be spent on the R&D centre and the rest will be used to fund expansion plans over the next one and half years. So far, Daikin has already pumped in around $165 million (Rs 1,100 crore) in India. Sembcorp invests in India renewables

An Indian subsidiary of Singapore-based Sembcorp Industries, Sembcorp Utilities, has ac-quired 74 per cent stake in the owner of 25.5MW of wind power capacity in Tamil Nadu. The transaction involved Indian renewables firm Sembcorp Green Infra, which now owns a majority stake in special purpose vehicle (SPV) Mulanur Renewable Energy Pvt Ltd. The buy-er paid a bit over $24 million for the 74 per cent stake, using internal funds, according to a statement. Mulanur Renewable Energy′s wind park is located in the district of Dindigul. US firms pledge $45bn for India

American companies including Amazon, Cisco and 21st Century Fox are all set to invest $45 billion in India over the next two-three years. John Chambers, chairman, US-India Business Council (USIBC), said: "Over the next two-three years, we see this pace accelerating, again with about 20 per cent of our member compa-nies reporting, indicating that USIBC members are on track to invest an additional $45 bil-lion, which is a conservative estimate. "Given Prime Minister Modi′s track record towards implementing ′Digital India′ and key economic reforms, we are optimistic that this number will be dramatically exceeded, per-haps even doubled." Honda doubles Gujarat capacity

Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HSMI), the Indian arm of the Japanese two-wheeler manufacturer, has inaugurated the second assembly line of its fourth manufacturing plant at Vithalapur (Mandal taluk, Ahmedabad district) in the western state of Gujarat. The two-wheeler major has expanded to producing 6,00,000 units per annum and with ex-panded capacity in Gujarat, the company might also look at export prospects from the site. Keita Muramatsu, president & CEO, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India, said: "India is not only the World′s No. 1 two-wheeler market but is also going to be the No. 1 contributor to Honda global two-wheeler sales for the first time in this fiscal year 2016-17.” Gionee plans new Make in India base

Chinese tech major Gionee is planning to set up a new manufacturing base in India in the next year. Timir Baran Acharyya, regional director, Gionee, said: "We are looking 50-70 acre land in north India, preferably in or around NCR, for our manufacturing plant.” Acharyya said the company has been investing heavily on strengthening its network and sales force and is aiming at three-fold growth in sales to $1.4 billion (Rs 9,000 crores) in the current fiscal. Gionee's two domestic vendors, Foxconn in Andhra Pradesh, and Dixon in Delhi NCR, con-tribute around 30-40 per cent of the handsets sold in the country, while the rest are import-ed. Swiss firm expands India facility

Switzerland-based Datwyler has decided to construct its most advanced manufacturing facil-ity, 'FirstLine', at Datwyler India's Satara site in Maharashtra. The Swiss firm is a global supplier of customised sealing solutions to manufacturers and companies which operate in the healthcare, automotive, civil engineering and consumer goods sectors. The FirstLine facility is specially designed to manufacture pharmaceutical rubber compo-nents in a fully integrated good manufacturing practice (GMP) environment using innovative automated processes, and conforming to the highest industry standards, Datwyler said. Panasonic plans $17mn investment

Japanese home appliances and consumer electronics company Panasonic's India arm an-nounced an investment of around $17 million (Rs 115 crore) to set up a manufacturing plant at Jhajjar in Haryana to locally produce refrigerators. The factory spread across 1,50,000 sq ft, with an annual production capacity of 500,000 units will be operational in November 2017 and the company expects sales from the unit to kick start from April 2018. Panasonic India and South Asia president and CEO said: “This will fill the balance pie that was missing from Panasonic′s locally manufactured product portfolio in India.” Panasonic currently imports refrigerators from Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam into India. Toshiba forays into Indian Railways Japanese conglomerate Toshiba is all set to establish a new production facility of electrical equipment for railway systems in Hyderabad to expand its commitment to India and its abil-ity to supply international markets. The new unit will manufacture power-conversion systems and train-control systems that provide overall operation management. Katsutoshi Toda, chairman, Toshiba Transmission and Distribution Systems India (TTDI), said in a statement: "India is a growing market that is committed to robust, long-term invest-ment, especially in electricity and transportation infrastructure, and we are strongly com-mitted to the country across our business lines. "We will grow the new manufacturing base with investments that, I hope, will provide em-ployment and contribute to ′Make in India′ for India′s industrial development.”

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