Good morning, folks! If you thought island rescue on the basis of SOS scribbled on the sand happened only in movies, three sailors stranded on Pikelot Island will tell you it really happens.
Vivo walks out of IPL 2020
Vivo has pulled out of IPL 2020, two days after an official declaration of their continuing to be main sponsor signed by BCCI Secretary Jay Shah. It didn’t help matters that Jay Shah is the son of Home Minister Amit Shah at a time when BJP and the central government has been vehemently going Hindi Chini Bye Bye.
What about the existing contract? Currently Vivo is the contracted main sponsor for the league for a five year period from 2017 onwards at a hefty price of approximately Rs. 2199 Crores, translating to about Rs. 440 Crores per season. BCCI will release a new tender where they may end up taking a hair cut on the sponsorship amount as moneycontrol sources limit the new sponsorship amount to Rs. 300 Crores. Clarity is yet to emerge whether Vivo is walking out only for 2020 or does it extend to the remaining period of the contract as well.
Funny business: It’s ironic that this news about a Chinese brand having to exit this sponsorship has come out through a set of Chinese whispers. While the two parties in question, Vivo and BCCI remain tight lipped, it was an IPL franchise who called up the other seven with this news which was then leaked to Times of India. Although IPL 2020 is scheduled to take place in Dubai, starting September 19, the drama around it is just beginning to heat up.
HDFC Bank’s new Godfather
Ending months of uncertainty, HDFC Bank finally announced the RBI-approved new CEO as insider Sashidhar Jagdishan. At 55, Jagdishan has spent majority of his career at HDFC Bank, joining 24 years back in 1996. The official switch over is due to happen on 27th October, 2020.
Jagdishan’s CV: After a short run at Deutsche Bank,SJ joined HDFC Bank in 1996 as a manager in finance. Within three years he grew to the role of Business Head – Finance in 1999 and soon enough CFO in 2008. Currently he heads a mouthful of departments – Finance, HR, Legal & Secretarial, Administration, Infrastructure, Corporate Communications and CSR. No wonder it is being seen as a fairly smooth transition.
Why is this important? In it’s 26 years of existence, HDFC Bank has been helmed only by outgoing CEO Aditya Puri. Since being listed in 1995, the bank has made returns of 25000% for it’s shareholders! While the market has given a thumbs up to the announcement, Jagdishan is looking at a baptism by fire depending on how the NPA and moratorium book shapes up in this crisis.
Argentina restructures sovereign debt
The Argentine government announced a restructuring for part of the outstanding $323 Billion sovereign debt. These renewed terms for the $65 Billion debt have helped it break ice with private investors like Black Rock and Fidelity.
Details of the deal: Argentina defaulted for the 9th time in 20 years on it’s sovereign bonds in May 2020. Unlike 2001, when the creditors took the country to court followed by long litigations, this time the conditions are even more exacerbated due to coronavirus. Three groups of creditors have now agreed to reissue the defaulted bonds worth $65 Billion in a way where they will expect to be paid back only 55 cents per dollar.
What happens now? The deal is yet to be sealed as the bondholders need to vote, which has to happen before 24th August. Considering the government concluded that sustainable debt was possible only till 39 cents to a dollar, some economists in the country have raised concerns as to how this new deal will be paid off. The benefit of the deal is that it does not lock out the country from global bond markets as a default would have. As for the remaining sovereign debt, this could be just the start as Argentina is staring at a $44 Million debt to IMF as well.
Sunrise industry in the pandemic: Union ministry of home affairs released some interesting figures for the ventilator industry yesterday. Of the 60,000 ventilators ordered, 50,000 were funded by PMCares Fund for Rs. 2,000 Crores. Most importantly, 96% by volume and 90% by value were made in India.
Imports expected to get back to normal at JNPT: India’s largest container handling port JNPT raised some hopes on Monday as it announced a 19% growth in overall traffic for July, over June. In the period April-July, the port handled about 80% equivalent of the container traffic last year. They also foresee imports reaching some sort of normalcy by August end, with exports already seeing a spike.
US federal contracts sans H1B visa holders: In yet another attack on his favourite bunny of immigration, Donald Trump signed executive orders on Monday banning H1B visa holder tech workers from being employed on US federal government contracts. Although as per a Nasscomm clarification the order merely calls for a review of federal contracting and H1-B visa program practices.
Eye to the future: The pandemic has proven to be a fork in the road for many players and BP is choosing to go green. On Monday, the British oil producer announced plans to reduce oil production from 2019 levels by 40% in 2030, along with a 10-fold increase in annual low carbon investments. All on a path to net zero emissions by 2050.
China extends it’s hattrick of vehicle sale growth streak: For the fourth consecutive month, China registered a growth in it’s vehicle sales, with a 14.9% YoY increase in sales for July. Some of this can be attributed to tax breaks to stimulate car buying and discounts from car makers who had temporarily suspended operations.
Markets broke through a 4-day losing streak to emerge in the green. HDFC Bank gained about 4% with the announcement and sealing the deal of the new CEO. Reliance also seemed to be boosted with a #2 position on the Future Brands Index. Wockhardt continued it’s upward stride based on the news of signing up with UK government.
If you thought Indians made for worst tourists, prepare to be surprised. Last week, an Austrian couple visiting Gipsoteca Museum in Northern Italy ended up breaking three toes of a 200-year old plaster cast statue, in an attempt to take a picture with it!