Friday, November 23, 2012


Top snacks maker PepsiCo Foods has started slipping with a slew of smaller and regional brands eating into the market share of its flagship brands Kurkure snacks and Lays potato chips.
Kurkure and Lays, which dominate the Rs 9,400-crore Indian snacks market, have begun losing share to regional players such as Gujarat-based Balaji, Indore's Yellow Diamond and DFM Foods' Crax in addition to some variants of ITC's Bingo snacks, which are matching the multinational on pricing, variants and regionalisation.

Industry official quoting Nielsen data said both Kurkure and Lays' market shares slipped 2-3% in the April-September period, while some others like ITC's Bingo, Balaji, Parle and even Yellow Diamond have gained. Nielsen data also shows that PepsiCo Foods' (FritoLay India) share in overall western snacks has slipped to 40% last fiscal from 48% in 2009-10.

A PepsiCo spokesperson said the company doesn't comment on market shares, which "fluctuate from quarter to quarter".

"This year we have further strengthened our market position in all potato chips, Kurkure, baked snacks and traditional namkeen that we operate in, with more than 25 new launches including new category introductions like Kurkure Monster Paws and Kurkure Puffcorn," the person said.

Officials said the firm is banking on volumes, multiple packs and increased marketing spends to get back its market share.

PepsiCo's Lays, Kurkure lose market share to local players like Yellow Diamond and Balaji
But then its smaller rivals too are widening their product portfolio and reach.

DFM FoodsBSE -4.08 %, maker of Crax snacks, for example, stepped up its distribution in North India and launched Crax in the western markets last summer. "This has helped in our brand share going up," Mohit Satyanand, independent director at DFM Foods, said.

The salted snacks market in the country has been growing 25% a year, and smaller players have been fuelling category growth as much as bigger ones like PepsiCo, ITCBSE -0.88 % and Haldiram's.

And they are attracting the attention of private equity players. Mid last year, Sequoia Capital invested close to $30 million in Indore-based snack food maker Prakash Snacks, owner of Yellow Diamond chips. The eight-year-old Indore-based firm sells a range of chips and savoury puffs.

PepsiCo has been selling products at prices ranging from Rs 2 to Rs 55 across categories. Last year, it consolidated its mass-priced snacks under a new entity, Lehar Foods, to take on regional brands such as Balaji, Bikanervala and A-Top Foods.

It operates on a low-cost model and PepsiCo is hopeful that Lehar Foods will contribute 50% to the firm's foods division FritoLay by 2015. A couple of years back, PepsiCo attempted to buy out strong regional players such as Gujarat-based Balaji Wafers and A-Top Foods, but the talks did not materialise.

Meanwhile, the competition is increasing. Biscuits and snacks maker Parle Products extended its portfolio to the traditional salted snacks category with the revamp of its 'Parle namkeens' earlier this month.

"Whenever new products enter any category, the dominant player naturally gets impacted," B Krishna Rao, group product manager at Parle Products, said. He said the company was enthused by the product's initial response and hoped to capture 20% share by the end of this fiscal.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Festivals and the life

It has been long time since the last post about the famous beaches all over world.
In the mean time celebrated this eid with the kids at the amusement park and it was so fun and happiness all around. Although missed my dear ones on this eid, this is what life is all about, somewhere one has to give sacrifices to achieve or gain something in his or her life.
But Inshallah, On Eid-ul-Zuha, this october, Surely will be there, celebrating with the family and the kids

Friday, May 18, 2012

Top 10 beach cities of the world

Following are the top ten finest beach cities in the world,

1.      Barcelona, Spain
2.      Cape Town, South Africa 
3.      Honolulu, Hawaii 
4.      Nice, France 
5.      Miami Beach, Florida 
6.      Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 

7.      Santa Monica, California 
8.      Sydney, Australia 
9.      Tel Aviv, Israel 
10.  Vancouver, British Columbia 

Facebook and other companies comparision

As Facebook is finally going public and it would be worth about $104 billion when it debuts at $38 a share, and there's guaranteed to be a pop once it starts trading.

That means that the total value of Facebook, an eight-year-old company, is more than some of the largest, most successful companies in the world that have been around for decades.

Here are some of the most interesting ones:

1.       Hewlett-Packard, one of the largest PC makers in the world, is smaller than Facebook. It's worth $44 billion — less than half of Facebook's titanic $105 billion valuation. HP also just laid off about 25,000 employees.
2.       Facebook is four times larger than Dell, another super-giant PC and server maker. Dell has a market cap of about $26 billion. It's still trying to find its way in the post-PC era.
3.       It's bigger than, a company that is more or less partially responsible for the cloud computing revolution. Salesforce is only worth around $20 billion — and its interns end up as high-ranking officials from time to time.
4.       Starbucks, the coffee chain that literally appears twice on every corner. Starbucks is worth about $40 billion — less than half of Facebook. We hear plenty of horror stories about Starbucks.
5.       The New York Times, one of the most prestigious content publishers in the world, is a blip compared to Facebook. Sharing is apparently worth 105 times more than some of the best content available on the Internet. The New York Times is worth slightly less than $1 billion. A bunch of New York Times staffers are actually planning to quit.
6.       Target, a huge big-box retailer similar to a higher-end version of Walmart, is worth less than half of Facebook. Target has a market cap of about $37 billion — well short of Facebook's expected valuation. Target actually raised its guidance this week, raising its value.
7.       Facebook barely edges out Amazon, the largest online retailer in the world. Amazon is worth about $100 billion, while Facebook is worth just a smidge more. Amazon'sKindle has been a bit of a bust so far.
8.       Disney is worth about four-fifths of what Facebook is worth. The owner of ESPNand a ton of other properties is worth about $80 billion. Disney could soon be replaced by Rovioas one of the biggest media properties in the world.
9.       Facebook is worth twice as much as eBay. eBay has a market cap of about $50 billion.
10.   Facebook is worth about 10 Nokias put together. Nokia, one of the largest phone manufacturers in the world (not smartphone), is worth about $10 billion. The Nokia Lumia 900 isactually pretty nice, though.

It is not surprising that the Facebook is paying much better to its engineers as compared with the other companies in Silicon valley, thereby attracting the best of the talent.
But Facebook still isn't bigger than the typical tech giants: Google, Microsoft and Apple. Microsoft is worth about $250 billion, while Google is worth $204 billion and Apple is worth about $500 billion.

Let us wait and watch the story of facebook at the stock exchange

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Is it better to rent than to buy a house?

The origins of this article can be traced to a meet with 5 television editors (to be fair, their boss was on my side) who were shocked when I mathematically proved it is better to hire, than to buy. This is true of cars, vacations, or homes! Here we are talking homes.
So let us see what I do which worries, surprises, shocks, my editor friends.
Even though I do write articles on portfolio planning, portfolio construction and occasionally even stock picking, my own money is with a portfolio manager – and he is urging me to index! It took me a long time to understand that ego of stock picking need not interfere in the more important task of wealth creation.
So the stock picking happens as a hobby and the money gets managed by an extremely competent and diligent portfolio manager – and to use today’s modern language he is “just a broker”. He has been handling our family portfolio for the past 30 years.
We attended each other’s wedding, and now his daughter is ready for marriage. No I do not call him my “relation-ship manager”.
I rent an apartment, despite having enough money to buy a house. I plan to keep renting for as long as I can. I’m not just holding out for better prices. Renting will make me richer. Businesses are great investments while houses are poor ones, so I’d rather rent the latter and own the former.
Shares of businesses return 7% a year over long time periods. I’m subtracting for inflation – gradual price increases for everything from a loaf of bread to a root canal surgery. (After-inflation or “real” returns are the only ones that matter.
The point of increasing wealth is to increase buying power, not numbers on an account statement. Shares have been remarkably consistent over the past two centuries in their 7% real returns.
In Jeremy Siegel’s book, “Stocks for the Long Term,” he finds that real returns averaged 7.0% over nearly seven decades ending 1870, then 6.6% through 1925 and then 6.9% through 2004.
How much does investing in a house return?

The average real return for houses over long time periods might surprise you. It’s zero. Shares return 7% a year after inflation because that’s how fast companies tend to increase their profits. Houses have their own version of profits: Rents.
Tenant-occupied houses generate actual rents while owner-occupied houses generate ones that are implied but no less real: the rents their owners don’t have to pay each year. House prices and rents have been closely linked throughout history – except for bouts of bull / bear runs- and related to inflation.
A house, after all, is an ordinary good. It can’t think up ways to drive profits like a company’s managers can. If land, cement, steel, and money are all commodities, how can a combination of all these not be a commodity?
Robert Shiller, a Yale economist and author of “Irrational Exuberance,” which predicted the stock price collapse in 2000, has recently turned his eye to house prices.
Between 1890 and 2004 he finds that real house returns would have been zero if not for two brief periods: one immediately following World War II and another since about 2000.
Even if we include these periods houses returned just 0.4% a year, he says.
The average pundit, planner, lender or broker making the case for ownership doesn’t look at returns over long periods of time – it is embarrassing to say the least! Sometimes they reduce the matter to maxims about “building equity” and “paying yourself” instead of “throwing money down the drain.” If they do look at returns they focus on recent ones. Those tell a different story!
Aauthor P V Subramanyam

Thursday, March 15, 2012

International trade and India's story

Trade is done simply to satisfy the wants, Trade is conducted not only for the sake of earning profit; it also provides service to the consumers. Trade is an important social activity because the society needs uninterrupted supply of goods forever increasing and ever changing but never ending human wants. As per Wikipedia, Trade is the transfer of ownership of goods and services from one person or entity to another by getting something in exchange from the buyer. As per Wikipedia , International trade is the exchange of capital, goods, and services across international borders or territories.[1] In most countries, such trade represents a significant share of gross domestic product (GDP) International trading system is severely impacted by the Industrialization, advanced transportation, globalization, multinational corporations, and outsourcing.
 Following are different types of trades,
Trade can be divided into following two types, viz. a. Internal or Home or Domestic trade. b.External or Foreign or International trade United States is the largest by International trade In this post I will restrict my focus on understanding the Indian perspective and we shall come to conclusion on the India’s position in International trade. International trade now accounts for nearly 53% of the gross domestic product (GDP), pointing to increased integration with the global economy, which is not limited to the stock market and the banking system alone. In 2004-05 , global trade accounted for 37% of the GDP. It is the rapid growth in shipments in and out of the country, driven by lower customs duty, which has spurred this sharp growth. India's share in global trade is now near the 2% mark, compared to a mere 0.7% in 2000. The rise of other trading partners has pushed the US to the third slot. US has been displaced by UAE as India's largest trading partner, followed by China, since 2008-09. In the first six months of the current financial year, however, China overtook the UAE to be the top trading partner. There has been a gradual shift in India's manufactures exports from labour-intensive sectors like textiles, leather and manufactures, handicrafts, and carpets to capital and skill-intensive sectors. The Economic Survey 2011-12 highlighted the growing imbalance in trade, with increase in gold and silver imports being major contributors. Gold and silver imports stood at $50 billion in 2011-12. Source: ET and Wiki

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Just 8% Indians have Internet

Though known for its computer whizkids world over, the penetration of computers/ laptops in India is only 9.4% or less than one out of 10 households with only 3% having internet facility. The penetration of internet is 8% in urban as compared to less than 1% in rural area. The 2011 housing census figures released on Tuesday by the Registrar General of India threw up some interesting facts bringing out stark realities in India that is trying to carve a place among the top advanced nations. While the use of TV sets in Indian households saw an increase of 16 points from 31.6 to 47.2% in last one decade and penetration of mobile phones touched 59%, the country failed to match this progress in giving better sanitation to the people as 50% of the 24.67 crore households still defecate in the open and 41.6% have no bathroom facility. The figures of modes of transport can give a reason to smile to the automobile manufacturers as only 4.7% households have four wheelers and only 21% have two wheelers. The majority, about 45%, still prefer to ride bicycles, while 17.8% households still have not personal transport assets. The last decade saw an increase of 9 point in two wheeler and 2 points in four wheelers, with bicycle showing increase of 1 point only. As regards amenities 36% of households still have to fetch water from a source located within 500 mts in rural areas and 100 mts in urban areas while 17% still fetch drinking water from a source located more than half a kilometre away in rural areas or 100 metres in urban area. For the main source of lighting, 31.4% households still depend on kerosene while electricity is available to 67.2%, an increase of 11 points over 2001. The rural urban gap for electricity reduced by 7 percentage points from 44% in 2001 to 37% in 2011. Two-third of the households are using firewood/crop residue, cow dung cake/coal etc. and 3% households use Kerosene. There is an increase of 11 pts in use of LPG from 18% in 2001 to 29% in 2011. The Census 2011 for over 24.66 crore households across was done over a period of 45 days and involved approximately 25 lakh enumerators and 2 lakh supervisors. Source:

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Facebook shutdown

Facebook life line of millions of people across the globe will be shutting down their operations in next month on 15 if sources are to believed. This has created panic all over the globe as the users are worried about losing their virtual world although build over short period of time. The reason for the shutdown was absurdly cited as, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook "wanted his life back" and desired "to put end to all the madness". Zuckerberg is supposed to have made this statement at a press conference outside the social network's Palo Alto office. Zuckerberg has also told that "Facebook has gotten out of control, and the stress of managing this company has ruined my life. I need to put an end to all the madness," But imagine your life after the shutdown, what about those who are operating multiple accounts on the facebook. It would be hardest for those active users who regularly post their latest pics and attach the status update with these pics as how many likes for this. It could be a sigh a relief for the parents across the globe who have always blamed the social networking giant as a glue which enables the kids to engage in so many unwanted activities. However the company continues to deny the rumours, In fact David Ebersman, the CFO of Facebook was quoted as saying, "All of these rumours are false. We are going to be stronger than ever after 15 March."