Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Wednesday, Aug 17, 2005
Columns - Ear to the ground
Sterlite Optical gains on order positions
STERLITE Optical Technologies is buzzing on the market on its growing order book figures. The counter on Tuesday logged 4.43 lakh shares on the BSE and hung up with a gain of 1.47 per cent at Rs 86.40.
According to the management, there had indeed been a strong growth in order backlogs for the company. The total current order book figure, according to Mr Anand Agarwal, CEO of the company, is Rs 300 crore. The domestic demand for optical fibre cables has been going up steadily. The company has received orders for jelly-filled copper cables from SAARC countries and Africa recently.
The company has also made strong inroads into the Chinese optical fibre cables and has captured 7 per cent market share there. It is expected to make a significant breakthrough in Taiwan and Indonesia also shortly. Both optical fibre and copper cables have witnessed rise in prices in recent months, industry insiders observed.
GDR issue on anvil?
HIMACHAL Futuristic Communications is said to be considering a GDR issue shortly to meet its working capital requirement; the issue could be to the tune of $60 million to service increased flow of orders from overseas and in the domestic market.
According to market sources, its debt-restructuring plan is also through.
Meanwhile, ICICI Bank, which had been holding largest chunk of shares in the company's paid-up capital, has recently exited completely. The promoters' holding in the company is still very low, while an odd assortment of investors together hold majority of the shares.
The stock on Tuesday saw around 84.84 lakh shares change hands on the BSE. The stock price during the session had shot up to Rs 28.25 against the previous close of Rs 27.90, but finished the day at Rs 26.20, down 6.09 per cent. The 52-week high of the stock is Rs 28.60, attained on August 12 last.
Interest up on stake sale talk
The market is agog with rumour that a foreign bank is aiming to take a strategic stake in Lakshmi Vilas Bank.
According to dealers, the talk doing the rounds is that the price at which the acquisition of stake is being negotiated is significantly higher than the last rights issue price of Rs 60 and even substantially higher than the current market price. On Tuesday the stock closed at Rs 105.40 on the NSE, up 1.05 per cent, with a traded quantity of 30,782 shares.
As on June 30, 2005, the promoters held only 1.47 per cent of the paid-up capital of the bank.
It is understood that RBI also wanted a strong bank to take over the management control of this small private bank with well spread out network in southern region for safety and long-term growth. The public holding of the bank is around 83.19 per cent, while private corporate bodies held around 9.76 per cent and institutions around 4.69 per cent. The 52-week high of the counter is Rs 238.60.
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