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Updated: Dec 20 2012, 06:01am hrs
Visa Steel plans to sell stake to expand

Visa Steel, the Indian partner of Chinas second-largest steelmaker, will sell new shares to fund a R1,700 crore ($310 million) expansion and cut debt, as it tries to end six straight quarters of losses. The sale at the right price will reduce the founders holding to 51% from 74%, chairman Vishambhar Saran said, without giving a timeline. Visa, which shut its sole steel plant in the eastern state of Orissa early this year because of an iron ore shortage, is banking on the local government to lift curbs and resume supplies of the raw material by January, he said.

Vedanta considering layoffs at Orissa plant

Vedanta Aluminium (VAL), Indias largest aluminium maker, is considering layoffs within two months at its alumina refinery in Orissa as hopes of an immediate revival of the plant fade. VAL has about 550 employees. It closed down the 1-million-tonne per year refinery exactly two weeks ago due to a shortage of bauxite. We dont have any other choice left but to retrench staff, VAL president Mukesh Kumar told Reuters. It could be 10 or 100 by January-February depending on the situation, Kumar said.

BMW assesses possibility of producing Mini in India

Luxury car-maker BMW is assessing the possibility of producing its iconic brand, Mini, in India as part of its long-term plans. The car maker, however, will presently concentrate on brand in the country, Philipp Von Sahr, president, BMW India said on Wednesday. We will not exclude Mini in our production facility in India, but at the moment it will remain an imported car, von Sahr said. BMW had launched Mini in January 2012.

AG Rao is new MD of Manpower Group India

Manpower Group India has appointed AG Rao, former executive president of Tata Teleservices, as its managing director. Rao, who joined the role on December 14, replaced Sanjay Pandit who is moving into a global role, a company release said. Srikanth Rengarajan would continue as executive director and president of India operations and would report to Rao.

Lupin gets USFDA nod for oral contraceptive drug

Lupin said its subsidiary Lupin Pharmaceuticals has received final approval for its oral contraceptive Drospirenone and Ethinyl Estradiol tablets, 3 mg / 0.03 mg, from the USFDA to market a generic version of Bayer Healthcares (Bayer) Yasmin tablets 3 mg/0.03 mg. Lupin will be marketing its tablets USP in a wallet pack of 28 tablets consisting of 21 yellow active tablets.

Expat pilots down to 340 from last years 526

340 expat pilots are still employed with various airlines in the country of which largest number is with Jet Airways. Total number of foreign pilots employed with various airlines has come down from 526 last year to 340 present, of which 93 are employed with Jet Airways. 63 are employed with SpiceJet, 56 with Indigo, 21 with Air India, nine with Alliance Air a subsidiary of Air India, eight with Blue Dart and 90 with non scheduled operators, KC Venugopal, minister of state for civil aviation, said.

Swaraj Tractors clinches Deming Prize

Swaraj division of Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M), Farm Equipment Sector (FES), a part of the $15.9-billion Mahindra Group, has clinched the prestigious Deming Application Prize for 2012. Bishwambhar Mishra, chief executive (tractor and farm mechanisation business), said that the Deming Prize has been awarded by the Union of Japanese Scientists and Engineers.