Zeelandia of Holland To Bake in India

The Dutch family-owned baking company Zeelandia, has entered into a joint venture with Fine Organics which has been Zeelandia’s distributor in India since 2001. Fine Zeelandia will be based in Mumbai and it will cater to customers throughout the country, as well as in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.

The company plans to  produce locally using local ingredients wherever possible. Within its first year of operation, Fine Zeelandia will also prepare a fully equipped production site for bread and patisserie mixes, Carlo release agents, Finagel cake gel and Paletta jellies.

According to Zeelandia CEO Roelof Krist, the joint venture fits seamlessly into Zeelandia’s strategy. “We want to strengthen our global position through local partnerships and local production. We’ve already established a permanent local presence in China, Brazil, Russia, South Africa and Turkey. India is a logical next step: it’s a huge growth market, especially for confectionery but increasingly for bread as well.”

Matthijs Spiering, Zeelandia’s international commercial manager said, “Because Indian consumers have become more internationally influenced, a number of Western-style bakery ingredients have become popular among Indian, including multi-cereal bread mixes, muffin mixes, fondant and special fruit fillings and glazes.”

Zeelandia Pastries

Zeelandia pastries
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March 17, 2015   No Comments

Engineering Firm AECOM Plans to Expand in India

AECOM, a Fortune 500, U.S.-based engineering  consulting firm that provides end-to-end solutions for all kinds of infrastructure development projects, plans to hire 1,500 more employees for its India operations, its global chairman & CEO Michael S. Burke said. Currently the company has 2,500 employees located across eight regional offices and project offices in 26 states in India.

Burke, who is visiting India for the first time, said in New Delhi, “AECOM is committed to India and is in a strong position to help Prime Minister Modi and the Indian government achieve the infrastructure vision for the country. We will be hiring professional local talent in India. They are expected to be engineering professionals, architects and planners.”

The company is working on the Dholera New Township in Gujarat, and development of the naval base Seabird in Karwar in the state of Karnataka. The projected construction cost for the two projects is $7.3 billion and $3 billion, respectively. It also provides consultancy services for the Metro rail projects in six cities. The total cost of construction works being undertaken by AECOM for the Mumbai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Chennai Metros is $9.9 billion.

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March 15, 2015   No Comments

Dubai-Based Healthcare Provider Plans Luxury Hospital Chain in India

Advet Bhambhani Ventures (ABV), a Dubai-based healthcare service provider, plans to establish India first “luxury” hospital chain. Live Mint reports that Advet Bhambhani,  CEO of the ABV Group said, “ABV is looking at an investment of at least $64 million for facilities at multiple locations in the country and will have its first hospital in Mumbai.”

There is a demand for luxury hospitals in the country that will provide superior quality of services and treatment among the rich and the ultra-rich who otherwise prefer to go Singapore or U.S., and to address this requirement ABV will set up all-suite hospitals in India’s metros and some other cities. India’s private healthcare market is dominated by corporate hospital chains such as Apollo Hospitals, Fortis Healthcare, Max Healthcare Ltd., and Wockhardt Hospitals Ltd., which have been raising their market share. Two non-resident Indian groups —Dubai-based Aster DM Healthcare Llc., and Abu Dhabi-based NMC Healthcare have already established a presence in the country.

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March 3, 2015   No Comments

India to Spend $16 Billion on Warships Submarines

Reuters, citing defense sources, reported that Prime Minister Modi had summoned a meeting of the cabinet committee on security on 16 February to approve construction of seven frigates equipped with stealth features to avoid easy detection, and the government cleared an $8 billion plan to build India’s most advanced warships.

Under the  ”Project-17A” , four stealth frigates will be built at  naval shipyards  Mumbai and  three in Kolkata. “Project 17-A was awaiting cabinet clearance since 2012,” a defense source said, adding the Modi government was moving quickly on a project seen as of critical national importance.

The Times of India said the government had also approved six nuclear-powered submarines  for a further $8 billion. After the cabinet committee for security approval, technical parameters or naval staff qualitative requirements (NSQRs) will be drafted for the over 6,000-tonne submarines. These are likely to be constructed at the ship-building center in Visakhapatnam in the eastern coastal state of Andhra Pradesh where India’s first three nuclear-powered submarines with nuclear ballistic missiles are being built.

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February 25, 2015   No Comments

Favorable Economic Winds Help India’s Economy Surge

Of the BRIC economies, Brazil is struggling as commodity prices fall, Russia is headed toward recession due to weak oil revenues and sanctions from Western nations, while China is slowing down. However, in India the stock market and rupee are surging; multinational companies are looking to start new operations or expand their current ones; foreign investment rules have been relaxed for insurers, military contractors, and real estate companies; and a broad tax overhaul is underway. Whether India’s momentum is sustainable or short-lived depends on whether Prime Minister Modi can push through deeper reforms.

The New York Times quotes Shailesh V. Haribhakti, the chairman of MentorCap Management, a boutique investment bank in Mumbai as saying, “All the circumstances have come together to make manufacturing and growth happen.”

With prices of crude halved, fuel costs have dropped and along with it, transport expenses and inflation. The country’s chronic budget deficits are narrowing. “We’ve got essentially a $50 billion gift for the economy,” said Raghuram G. Rajan, the governor of the Reserve Bank of India.

Modi has many economic issues on his plate that he needs to attend to: expanding the private sector’s role in coal mining, a government-dominated industry; accelerating infrastructure projects; replacing state taxes on goods that cross state borders with a national tax; and acting on bills introducing longer term reforms.

Jayant Sinha, the minister of state for finance said that the government had begun making significant changes and that “there are a lot of inherited, legacy issues” they have had to work through such as budget deficits and persistent inflation. “You have to give us a little bit of time for every business to feel the difference,” he said.

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February 19, 2015   No Comments