Sunday, November 12, 2006

India Inc. Debuts on International Arena

Several indian companies in recent times have been acquiring companies around the world. This is a trend with far-reaching implications for the future of the country and the industry.

Some examples (Company : Acquires : For):
  • Tata Steel : Corus : 8 billion.
  • Ranbaxy : Romania's Terapia : $372 million.
  • Tata Motors : Daewoo's Commercial Vehicle Co. : Rs 465 Crores
  • Hindalco : Australian Copper Co. : A$21 million
  • Telecom Software firm Subex’s : Azure Solutions
  • Tata Coffee’s : US based Eight O’Clock
  • Dr Reddy’s : Betapharm
  • Nicholas Piramal India Ltd (NPIL) : UK’s Rhodia Organique Fine (Rhodia) : $ 14 million

This is just a random list.. ofcourse there are many more...

These movers and shakers are from a country which ranks as one of the lowest in the world in terms of business friendliness i.e ease of starting, running and closing a business (closing: average time 10 years).

Imagine if red-tape is cut, and the ubiquitious babu - actually starts working towards helping indian industries - thereby creating a very large number of jobs; much more than any gimmicky slogan based yojana. Public Sector needs to take note; promotions and employability needs to be linked to performance and not to other things. This might be our chance to deal with poverty in a way that Nehru's public sector giants (the new temples of india as he had said) could not do. China is doing this and more with its manufacturing sector (though its largely govt. 'enabled').

For the first time perhaps in several centuries, indian travellers abroad are seen not-only-from-the land of snake charmers, but from the land of an emerging economy they are taking note of.

Still there are several things that need to be watched out for continued success (stability, competition, good law and order, policies etc.). Many East Asian economies were once poised for a similar growth about a decade ago, few succeeded most did not.


At 10:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are right that Indian Companies are buying International business but its not cheap..The Indian Govt. should entertain R & D and increase the investment flow..It wont take time for India to be known as the rich for Medicine country..


At 11:08 PM, Anonymous Hiren said...

You are right about the red tape being cut. Aditya Birla built an empire abroad only because of red tape and his achievements are as awesome as Ambanis. What an opporutnity cost of red tape or should be say opportunity lost?

At 8:35 AM, Anonymous ekawaaz said...

Good to see Indians companies and businessman started buying business houses abroad, it shows that India is shining. Afterall we are living in Globalisation century so if India is making more of it then cool becuase it does put some smile on my face. Go Go Indian..

At 8:29 PM, Blogger Vin said...

it is a good sign to see india's economy growing... but as u pointed out, if red tapisism is cut and if appraisal system is introduced a lot more can be achieved...

At 9:56 AM, Blogger Ashish said...

One striking example is the IT industry. This was an industry that grew almost unregulated, and by the time that the Government realized that it was such a big industry, it had grown very big. If the government had tried to regulate it, no one knows what could have happened.
Even now, if the government reduces its controls on large sections of industry, they can grow by leaps and bounds.

At 6:44 PM, Anonymous silkboard said...

Also, before we rush to cheer them up, let us wait and watch if they have the expertise to complete successful mergers. Our work culture is very different from arguably more professional western styles, and I expect these first few big ticket purchases made by Indian firms to hit into these.

At 12:18 AM, Blogger Apun Ka Desh said...

anony> True abt Medicine. Ranbaxy is one such homegrown success story.. from a country that had no history of modern medicine business!

hiren> You echoed my thoughts there. Why is it that indians perform very well abroad, in their home country success stories are limited. Its got to do with the conducive environment for entreprenership thats available in the west.

ekawaaz/vin> Lets not let a few hundred jokers at the helm of policy making, to ruin this good run of business via red-taped mantras. It makes a BIG difference having the right set of people at the onset, than taking out dharnas later and cry foul.

Ashish> There was a article recently, cannot locate it now - which said exactly this: IT industry grew stupendously in india for 2 reasons:
1. Govt. Bureaucracy (read: Clerks) - were caught offguard with this completely new area of business, and could not frame their 'callous' policies to regulate this business.
2. Most clients for this new business were abroad - thereby reducing corruption, and ensuring timely payments for work done.
How True! The havoc that a useless clerk/babu can cause to the progress of the country - is still understimated by most of us.

SB> By all indications, there have not been any problems with mergers. Tata's did a good job with Daewoo Korea. Tatas and Mahindra's have had a long presence in Africa now. IT companies have done it on a smaller scale. The current crop of indian businessmen are generally smart. But yes - these are early days!

At 3:46 PM, Anonymous shark said...

You are right. Economy is booming and these aquisitions/mergers are good. If only we are able to sustain it.

As correctly pointed out in the comments section, the IT industry could grow so well only because the Government was too incompetent to even understand the industry to put some regulations on it ;-)

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