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ICICI Prudential Life IPO gets subscribed more than 10 times

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  • The Initial Public Offer (IPO) of ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company Ltd — a first by an insurance entity — received a strong response from investors with the offer getting subscribed 10.47 times.
  • According to data from the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the issue received bids for 138.58 crore shares till 7:30 pm on Wednesday — the last day for bidding. A total of 13.24 crore shares were on offer in the price band of Rs.300 to Rs.334.
  • In other words, the IPO received bids worth almost Rs.46,250 crore. The issue size is more than Rs.6,000 crore. The total offer is for 18.13 crore shares, which includes anchor investment portion of 4.89 crore shares.

Aptus raises Rs.270 cr. from Westbridge, IFIF

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  • City-based Aptus Value Housing Finance India Ltd., a company focused on funding affordable housing, has raised Rs.270 crore in a fresh round of funding from a couple of existing equity investors, valuing the company at Rs.1,350 crore.
  • While a fund advised by WestBridge Capital Partners, LLC has brought in Rs.245 crore in fresh money, India Financial Inclusion Fund (IFIF), a fund advised by Caspian Impact Investment Advisers, infused Rs.25 crore. IFIF had invested Rs.30 crore in the company in 2012. WestBridge had pumped in Rs.100 crore into Aptus in 2014.
  • According to M. Anandan, who set up Aptus in 2010, the fresh round of funding comes even as IFC Washington cleared a Rs.100-crore rupee-denominated 7-year debt funding to Aptus. These together would keep the company in good stead in terms of its ability to access cost-effective growth funds for business expansion, he added.

Reliance Defence is lowest bidder for patrol vessels

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  • Reliance Defence Engineering Limited (RDEL) has emerged as the lowest bidder to build 14 Fast Patrol Vessels( FPVs) for the Indian Coast Guard (ICG).
  • It is the largest naval order to the private sector by ICG. The contract value is Rs.920 crore. FPVs are primarily designed for patrolling, anti-smuggling and anti-terrorist operations, fisheries protection and search and rescue, and are a critical support to the Navy during wartime.
  •  The first vessel to is expected to be delivered within 24 months from date of signing the contract and the last within 76 months from date of signing the contract.

Mittal says 700 MHz expensive

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  • Days ahead of the start of the country’s largest-ever spectrum auction, Bharti Airtel Chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal said the pricing of the 700 MHz frequency band is ‘very expensive’.
  • “All I can say is that it is very expensive,” Mr. Mittal said on Wednesday when asked about the pricing of the spectrum in the premium band.
  • He, however, declined to comment on whether or not his company would place bids for the 700 MHz band, which is considered as the most efficient among telecom frequencies as the estimated cost of providing service through it is about one-third of 3G in the 2,100 MHz band.

BSNL to get Rs.1,250-crore subsidy for rural landlines

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  • The Union Cabinet has approved the long-pending compensation of Rs.1,250 crore for state-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. (BSNL) for the deficit incurred in operating rural landline connections installed before April 1, 2002.
  • The subsidy support to the state-owned telecommunications company will be paid from the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF).
  • “The Cabinet also approved that the above subsidy support would be the last and final payment and no further request from BSNL for financial/subsidy support from USOF on this count shall be considered,” the government said in an official release on Wednesday.

India-De Beers joint venture to be wound up

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  • The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved initiating the process of winding up of Hindustan Diamond Company Pvt. Ltd. (HDCPL)  a 50:50 joint venture of the Government of India and De Beers Centenary Mauritius Ltd (DBCML).The HDCPL was incorporated under the Companies Act, 1956 in 1978.
  • The objective of the Company was to supply rough diamonds to the diamond processing industry in India – particularly to small- and medium-sized diamond jewellery exporters who had no direct access to rough diamonds.
  • The supply was to come from Diamond Trading Company (DTC), London, the marketing arm of De Beers which held a large chunk of the world’s rough diamonds market.

Cabinet okays Rs.5,176 cr. for GAIL pipeline project

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  • The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved viability gap funding of Rs.5,176 crore, which works out to 40 per cent of the estimated capital cost of Rs.12,940 crore, to GAIL for the development of the 2,539-km- long Jagdishpur-Haldia and Bokaro-Dhamra Gas Pipeline (JHBDPL) project.
  • “It (the pipeline) will ensure the availability of clean and eco-friendly fuel i.e. natural gas to the industrial, commercial, domestic and transport sectors in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal,” according to a statement from the government.
  • “This capital grant will encourage the supply of eco-friendly fuel at affordable tariffs to industries and will encourage industrial development in these states.”

Digital classifieds to be $1.2-bn. market

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  • The digital classified industry is projected to grow three times to $1.2 billion, on the back of growing smartphone penetration and Internet user base, according to a joint-report by Google and KPMG.
  • The industry was pegged at $150 million in 2011 and is estimated to have been about $400 million in 2015.
  • The report ‘Digital Classifieds in India 2020’ added that the next phase of growth of digital classifieds would be driven by the rapid growth of e-services, real estate and automobiles.