Indian indices are trading flat, after alternating to either side of yesterday's close since the morning. Stocks in the healthcare and IT space are trading firm while those from the oil & gas and power space are trading weak. Key Asian markets are mainly trading in the red with the Nikkei (Japan) being the only major gainer (0.7% up).
The BSE-Sensex is down by 1 point while NSE-Nifty is trading around 2 points above the dotted line. The BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices are both trading up by 0.4%. The Rupee is trading at 46.76 to the US dollar.
Shopper's Stop, which recently acquired majority stake in the group's hypermarket format Hypercity, is planning to expand the retail footprint of the latter. The management of the company sees this hypermarket business tripling its revenues by FY12 and also expects to break-even by then. Hypercity's revenues currently stand at Rs 3.3 bn. To gain a larger share of consumers' wallet, the company is focusing on lifestyle and food and grocery segment. The strategies for its group formats would not see a change. However, it is looking at an aggressive expansion of the hypermarket business. This is to squeeze the maximum from consumers, whose spending on food items is around 65%. It plans to open eight more Hypercity outlets by next fiscal. In spite of this, its major earnings are likely to come from apparels and accessories. Although the company is planning to increase scale of its hypermarket business, the lifestyle business remains its focus area due to higher margins. Currently the stock is trading flat.
Hotel stocks are trading a mixed bag currently with the major gainers being Country Club and EIH Ltd. As per a leading business daily, EIH (East India Hotels) Ltd. has completed the acquisition of 49% stake in its joint venture partner, Amex Investment in EIH Holdings. EIH has acquired equity interest for a consideration of RS 2 bn (US$ 45 m). With this EIH Holdings has become a wholly owned subsidiary of EIH International. The buyout would include equity investments in existing Oberoi Hotels in Mauritius, Indonesia and Egypt. The acquisition would also include management contracts for operating hotels that it had invested in including the Oberoi Zahra Nile Cruiser in Egypt and the new Oberoi hotel projects that are under construction or in planning stage including those in UAE, Morocco, Greece and Mauritius.