FMCG stocks are moving northwards today with the BSE FMCG index up by 0.6% in the last two hours of trade. According to a leading financial daily, Marico Ltd plans to demerge its salon business, Kaya into a separately listed firm. Kaya contributed to 7% of Marico's consolidated revenue and had a loss of Rs 29.1 crore at the EBIT level. There were reservations among investors with respect to Kaya's disappointing performance over the last 2-3 years. Thus, it is expected that the splitting of businesses would help improve Marico's (ex-Kaya) valuations. Marico would also combine its consumer products business and international business group for operational cost benefits.
Telecom shares are trading in the green today after the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) on telecom decided to slash the CDMA spectrum reserve price by 30%-50%. Auctions for 800MHz, 900MHz and 1800 MHz would be conducted in March. The Union Government was forced to cancel the auctions in the 800 MHz band in November 2012 after both the potential bidders, Tata Teleservices and Videocon withdrew their applications citing high reserve price. The CDMA airwaves would be sold along with GSM airwaves in the 1800 MHz and 900 MHz bands in March. Vodafone, Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular have told the government that they would be interested in participating in the auctions if the base price is lowered Idea Cellular is trading at its highest level since June 2008, while Bharti Airtel is up by almost 1%.