NSE top in derivatives globally

For the third consecutive year, India’s leading exchange NSE has been ranked as the world’s top derivatives trading platform, ahead of global giants like Chicago, Nasdaq and B3 of Brazil.

Data from Futures Industry Association, a global derivatives trade body showed that the NSE was ranked the largest exchange in the equity as well as the currency derivatives segments by number of contracts traded in 2021.

Under a different league table, in terms of the number of trades in the cash equities segment, the NSE was the fourth largest bourse in the world, data for 2021 by World Federation of Exchanges showed.

During 2021, 1,726 crore contracts were traded on the NSE, compared to 876 crore on B3 (of Brazil) and 494 crore on Chicago Mercantile Exchange group’s bourses, 329 crore on Nasdaq group’s exchanges and 310 crore on Chicago Board of Exchange, FIA data showed.

In 10 years, average daily turnover in the equity derivatives segment of the NSE increased 4.2 times, from Rs 33,305 crore in 2011 to Rs 1.4 lakh crore in 2021, the exchange said. In the same period, cash market average daily turnover increased 6.2 times, from Rs 11,187 crore in 2011 to Rs 69,644 crore in 2021.


Apple, Samsung give $5 bn to boost local manufacturing

As India renews its thrust on local manufacturing of electronics under the production-linked incentive scheme with Union Budget 2022-23 around the corner, Apple and Samsung alone are expected to manufacture/assemble smartphones worth around $5 billion (nearly Rs 37,000 crore) in the financial year 2021-22.

The two giants are set to surpass the PLI targets set by the government by over 50 per cent, according to industry experts.

“The leading global value chains firms have got off to a blazing start. Besides Pegatron and Bharat FIH which are now gearing up, the big three -Wistron, Pegatron and Samsung — will achieve significant production of $5 billion in 2022,” Pankaj Mohindroo, Chairman of the India Association said.

Apple’s contract manufacturers in India — Foxconn and Wistron — will avail the PLI incentives for the first time this year.

The iPhone maker’s second biggest global manufacturer Pegatron is likely to commence operations in India this year.

Samsung, which has the world’s largest mobile handset manufacturing factory in Noida, Uttar Pradesh, will avail the incentives under the scheme for the second year.

According to Mohindroo, Indian players like Lava, Padget Electronics (Dixon) and UTL also appear to be cracking the thresholds while “Opteimus and Bhagwati are gearing up”. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman last year extended the PLI scheme for large-scale electronics manufacturing with a focus on mobile phones by a year until 2025-26, though the base year of the scheme 2019-20 remains the same.

The PLI scheme provides an incentive of 4 per cent to 6 per cent on incremental sales of goods under target segments that are manufactured in India, for five years.

Apple and Samsung are also exporting locally-produced smartphones to the world like never before.

In 2021, the top countries that ‘Make in India’ iPhones were exported to include the UK (27 per cent), Japan (24 per cent), the Netherlands (23 per cent), Germany (7 per cent), Italy (4 per cent), Turkey (4 per cent) and the UAE (2 per cent).


Punjab polls on Feb 20

The Election Commission shifted the single-phase Punjab assembly election date to February 20 from February 14, in view of requests received from several political parties and the state government to defer polling by a few days in view of Guru Ravidas Jayanti on February 16.

As per the new schedule, January 25 will be the date for poll notification, February 1last date of filing nominations, February 2 date of scrutiny of nominations, February 2 last date for withdrawal, and February 20 date of poll. The counting date remains unchanged on March 10. The deferment is being seen as a concession in view of the sentiments of the Ravidasiya community .

Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi, BSP and subsequently BJP, Shiromani Akali Dal and Punjab Lok Congress had approached the EC seeking postponement of the February 14 polling date in Punjab, citing the expected movement of many electors who are Guru Ravidas’s followers and travel from Punjab to Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh during the week coinciding with Gurupurab.

India may add over 50 fresh unicorns in 2022

More than 50 startups in India show the potential to enter the unicorn club in 2022, says a new total India tally to well beyond 100 startup unicorns (those that are valued at over $1 billion each).

Amit Nawka, partner (deals & startups leader) in PwC India, which conducted the study, said, “We can see that the base of the companies in growth-stage and late-stage deals have improved significantly in calendar year 2021, depicting a stronger base of companies having the potential to reach unicorn status. With market sentiments favourably inclined towards startups, and the large base of scaled startup companies at the end of CY21, we expect the startups’ unicorn tally to go well beyond 100 by the end of 2022. ”

India is home to 81 unicorns as of now, with a total valuation of $274 billion. Of these, 44 unicorns with a total valuation of $89 billion were born last year, shows the national investment promotion agency. Indian startups had a blockbuster 2021 with approximately $35 billion raised across 1,000 rounds. The PwC report said that in the fourth quarter, startup funding crossed the $10-billion mark.

Fintech startups raised nearly four times more funds last year compared to the previous year. Edtech startups followed, with almost 100 companies raising about $3. 9 billion last year — a growth of 86% compared to $2. 2 billion raised in 2020. Growth and late-stage deals comprised around 85% of the total funding. Sequoia Capital, Accel, and Tiger Global were the most active investors in CY21, followed by Matrix Partners, and Blume Ventures.

Globally, 510 new unicorns emerged in the last calendar year, which was about 30% more than all five previous years combined. Almost 55% of all new unicorns are based in the US.

In 2021, close to 250 M&A transactions happened in the startup ecosystem, which is a big jump from earlier years. M&As were fuelled by new business models, with large startups acquiring capabilities and market presence, and large corporabets — notably the Tata and Reliance groups.

This is best time to invest in India: PM Modi

A fortnight before the Budget, PM Narendra Modi made a bold pitch for foreign investment, assuring all support to investors, while positioning India as an attractive and robust investment destination.

“The spirit of entrepreneurship in the country can provide new energy to every global partner. This is the best time to invest in India,” the PM said at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting, which is being held virtually due to the surge in Covid-19 cases internationally.

He listed out a host of measures and reform initiatives, ranging from a cut in corporate tax rates, to sorting out retrospective taxation issues, the PLI scheme and easing of rules. He also highlighted a large talent pool of engineers and other professionals and a jump in the number of startups in what was seen as an indication that finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present an investor-friendly budget on February 1.

The government is looking for a major boost to investment in the coming months to ensure that the growth process stays its course and more jobs are created in the country.

“There was a time when India was recognised for ‘Licence Raj’, the government had control over most things. We are trying to remove these challenges. We are trying to promote ‘ease of doing’ business and reduce government intervention,” he said, while pointing to developing technologies and platforms such as CoWin to deal with the pandemic, the pharma industry’s contribution and sought to position India as a “trusted partner” for global supply chains.

He suggested that the proposed free trade agreements with the UK, European Union, UAE and Australia would help and pushed for investment in semiconductors and other businesses, while listing out the large asset monetisation and infrastructure investment plans lined up by the government.

“Today, India is making policies for the present and the next 25 years, it is decisive. During this period, India has set itself a goal of high growth and saturation of welfare and wellness. This era of growth will also be green, clean, sustainable and reliable,” Modi said.

While mentioning that India was way ahead of its target on the Paris goals, the PM said: “While making large commitments on global goals and the tradition of sticking to them, we have set ourselves a target of net zero. With 17% global population, India may be making only 5% contributions to global carbon emissions, but it is 100% committed to dealing with the global climate challenge. ”


National Startup Day

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi announcing to celebrate January 16 as the National Startup Day, the meteoric rise of desi entrepreneurs in the past couple of years, which made global headlines, has received a tremendous boost.

Fresh data reveals that India produced 46 unicorns (companies with over $1 billion valuation) in 2021 alone, which raised a whopping $42 billion, up from $11. 5 billion in 2020.

According to a latest report by Orios Venture Partners, the country now has 90 unicorns — from ShareChat to Cred and from Meesho to upGrad — with new ones across the spectrum joining the coveted unicorn club faster than ever. India also emerged as the third largest startup ecosystem in the world in 2021, after the US and China, according to Hurun Research Institute.

India’s unicorns are currently worth more than $170 billion, and counting.

Modi said that like small businesses, which are the spine of India’s economy, startups are turning out to be the game changers. According to Satish Shukla, co-founder of automation and robotics firm Addverb Technologies, the Indian startup ecosystem has come a very long way and has matured a lot.

“We can see startups getting listed on the Indian bourses amid a slew of accessible VC/PE funds for the Indian startups. Several talented people are coming back to India to start on their own or work with startups, thereby reversing the brain drain process,” Shukla said.

Right from the inception of ‘Startup India’ in 2016, a slew of measures has been taken by the government like pushing for digital mode of payments, 100 per cent tax rebate on profit for a period of 3 years for eligible startups, waiver of norms for PSUs to promote procurement by startups and also encouraging PSUs to fund and nurture relevant startups.

India has seen four ‘decacorns’ to date -Flipkart, Paytm, Byju’s and OYO. Currently, India has the third-largest startup ecosystem in the world, with nearly 60,000 startups.

States invite Tesla

Even as negotiations between Tesla, the US electric car manufacturer, and the Central government seems to be stretching, a Maharashtra minister has extended the company an invite to start operations in the state and has assured all possible help. Two other states, Telangana and West Bengal, have also expressed interest in getting the car maker to invest within their jurisdiction.

State water resources minister Jayant Patil wrote to Tesla CEO Elon Musk on Twitter on Sunday, inviting him to establish the company’s plant in Maharashtra.

A few days back, Musk was replying to a query on when Tesla will launch in India. "Still working through a lot of challenges with the government,” said his message. Patil replied to Musk saying, "Maharashtra is one of the most progressive states in India. We will provide you all the necessary help from Maharashtra for you to get established in India. We invite you to establish your manufacturing plant in Maharashtra. ”

Since Musk’s tweet, Telangana and West Bengal too have extended similar invitations. Telangana was the first to woo Musk. Industry and commerce minister of Telangana KT Rama Ra o wrote on Twitter, “Hey Elon, I am the Industry & Commerce Minister of Telangana state in India. Will be happy to partner Tesla in working through the challenges to set shop in India/ Telangana. Our state is a champion in sustainability initiatives & a top notch business destination in India. ” West Bengal minister Md Ghulam Rabbani tweeted, "Drop here, we in West Bengal have best infra & our leader @MamataOfficial has got the vision. Bengal means Business".

Maharashtra has reached out to Tesla in the past as well. In October 2020, cabinet ministers Aaditya Thackeray and Subhash Desai had interacted with a Tesla team and invited them to the state. Maharashtra is one of the few states which has rolled out an electric vehicle policy which gives concessions to manufacturers as well as consumers. The state government has also taken a policy decision to purchase only electric vehicles for its use from now on.

Musk had said in 2021 that Tesla plans to start manufacturing in India from 2022 but since then he has repeatedly complained about high import duties in the country. “I'm told import duties are extremely high (up to 100%), even for electric cars. This would make our cars unaffordable,” he said.