Ad Here  
Another Indian music maestro at the UN Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet Delhi Chalo... Mersal magnified Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Road development slows down No Maha Koottani in TN... More Shakti to resource mobilisation... All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya Secularism and anti-Hinduism Rahman at CIC More heat than light Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara Cutting the nose to spite the face Don’t seem to feel the pulse… Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated Welcome focus on core competence Pharma – overdose of copying Kulandai was a giant The star of Spencers is no more Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu Of course, Gujarat is vibrant Kudos to NDTV... Should we change the official year? A glass full of corruption He saved millions from starvation... Noble nonagenarians... WTO Meet: resolved to meet again ONGC at KG Basin Contrarian cousins Sri Lanka votes for change Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Delhi is distant TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... Convulsions in The Hindu Come elections, come advertisements... Protest masters... The nuclear option The rise and rise of KCP Tribute S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS Plummeting profits of PSBs Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! The Jan Dhan bonanza Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital Why this malaise in medical education? TIAM turns a full cycle Towards speedy justice Kinetic Karnataka Delhi is distant… Remembering Indira Sivasailam... Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! West Bengal: mindless malignancy For whom the MIDS bell tolls? Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi The few handicaps... Music happens When TN politicians can emulate Kerala's Preserving for the future Medical costs hit the roof... Funding the un-funded New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… Shipping woes of Chennai companies Shale gas and its shallow future Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks Alexa – Talking Wikipedia Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW Godspeed, Chief Minister JJ CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra Modi storms Silicon Valley Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V A welcome initiative by the judiciary Adharma of opposition politics A more liberated TN… Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai Haul over the coal Making ‘my Amaravati’... IPL - no surprise this scam The brown list of Venkitaramanan A proud Madrasi The rise and fall of Annamalai University L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles Increasing non co-operation of state leaders Discoms deserve better… Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model Sweeter prospects for sugar CII projects higher growth… Fortune 500 review PC’s preference for professionals When nations steal growth from one another… Russi Mody – a tribute Quality education through the PPP mode There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! Robber barons everywhere Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Telangana in top gear… Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform Airlines in India: cost and space L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities Revive development banks... Streamlining mandatory third party cover Readers' Mail EVM is tamper-proof Delhi returns to BJP Vibrant Gujarat Tough task taking states together Small units prefers to remain small... Boy, can you beat these? Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? London, London Narayan The sea- saw battle continues... GNS - 100: our first subscriber EEC at the National Media Centre Excel Generators provide the vital back-up Gas is the way forward Modi and the lady An inexplicable neglect Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research Which side are you, Montek? Breaththrough in malaria control A yen for wastage… A rich pool of talent not utilised…. A think tank for Chennai Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad Paytm karo... Solar thermal shines… Intellectual of rare qualities When online building permits work…. IPL type auction for VCs? No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu TELANGANA at last…BUT Welcome GST Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL Multi-faceted Venkat IAS invades NDDB... Demise of a media baron... Return to king coal for urea... Moily’s bold thrust Shanti and Sadhana through Music He continues the focus on social amelioration …and of a popular trade leader Fuel for thought Five star activism stalls development activity Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Wise Presidents Revving up the manufacturing sector Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria The Swadeshi Trump Editor's Notes More tributes to GR Parliament in paralysis... A friendly business group SoA @ 80 Cement prices continue to rise… Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked Recognition to role of NBFCs.... Align crops to agro climate endowments… When the President was rendered homeless… Tribute – M V Murugappan Strengthen the base... The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more Maximising the micro pricing … Gay abandon in pricing Tribute – UCAL Selvan… Build close rapport with business leaders Sweet news for TN sugar mills Wanted: a second airport for Chennai The balancing act Quality silica from Neyveli Editor's Says PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals The power-full Hindujas China invests in India Tax agriculture An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... For whom the bell tolls? A professional at the helm of IRDA... Poor quality of university VCs GM Technology at last! Put expensive assets created to use... The Gulf aviation boom Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... Silver Years of Madras Musings Things happen by accident and not by design... Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt An enemy’s enemy is a friend This scant respect for Law TGS- The king storyteller Tatas moving out of urea production... How Air-India loses customs... Tatas moving out of urea production... Mu Sigma – is no more The why of tax incentives TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership Banning booze... Nuclear power at the nucleus CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... Make standards certification mandatory... CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan More Shakthi to Das’ elbow Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik Why land prices zoom in TN? Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel Auto components surge… Engineering seats go abegging When Ratan Tata visited SRM When small is no larger beautiful.. Building loyalty through the stomach MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science B H Kothari - a tribute S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist Polls and promises Where a state respects its litterateurs… Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna Computation of GDP – conundrums continue A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… No engine for this car Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... Solar, solar everywhere … Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School Fortune for Indian Airlines Valli, they are more marginalised TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Waning interest in public discussions… Lalu’s envy, India’s pride Where is Rajaji? to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ Muffled voices for merit… Roaring Ro-Ro facility
Tatas moving out of urea production...

Remember the massive restructuring done by Ratan Tata soon after he took charge in 1990s?  Making use of the opening up of the economy,  he focussed on brand consolidation and on a few key sectors and phased out other businesses. He inducted a younger team of professionals and set age limits for directors and also to expand investments overseas. The group recorded spectacular growth in the areas selected for focus like IT, steel and automobiles

Cyrus Mistry, who succeeded Ratan Tata three years ago, is attempting further consolidation. The group is expanding priority to civil aviation, defence production, and aeronautics. The losses incurred by Corus Steel consequent upon the meltdown of the global steel industry, has led to the bold decision to sell it off and concentrate on the domestic market.

In yet another major decision Tata Chemicals plans to vacate urea production. The company expanded into this field by setting up a large capacity ammonia-urea plant at Babrala in U.P based on gas conveyed through the HBJ pipeline.  TCL’s urea plant is among the most energy-efficient fertilizer plants with annual production of 12 lakh tonnes of urea. The operations have been quite profitable. Revenues during 2015-16 were at $ 350 million with after-tax profits of $ 35 million.

However, in line with the other urea plants, the Babrala unit has also been suffering from the humongous delays in the settlement of subsidies. The continuance of the control over urea prices has been a major irritant for the industry. Recently, Tata Chemicals decided to sell the urea plant to Yara International ASA of Norway for $ 400 million (around Rs 2670 crore).

I have had occasions to visit the Babrala plant a couple of times. I have been deeply impressed with the excellent extension work done by the company. The company has been extending a vast range of services through the Tata Kisan Sansar outlets making great use of technology, information, and management techniques. At Babrala, the company, along with TCS and Tata Telecom, set up a highly sophisticated centre to provide a broad range of information to farmers spread across several north Indian states. The TKS outlets in themselves provide a vast variety of services. The impact was indeed spectacular: I remember the ease with which the company assisted farmers to switch from traditional varieties of rice to basmati rice cultivation bringing about handsome increases in farm incomes.

However, the neglect of this vital fertilizer sector for long with an irrational subsidy system and delayed settlement of agreed subsidies in a regime that professes freedom from controls should have forced this decision on the Tatas.

For quite some time, Tatas are also appear to be concerned about the intense competition and constraints for growth impacting Tata Telecom. One may not be surprised if the group decides to vacate this space as well.

Tata Chemicals has retained the phosphoric fertilizer unit at Haldia. Rallis India Ltd, another Tata unit, may continue to focus on the agriculture sector.

Author :
Reported On :
Sector :
Shoulder :
IE, the business magazine from south was launched in 1968 and pioneered business journalism in south. Through the 45 years IE has been focusing on well-presented and well-researched articles. When giants in the industry stumbled to keep pace with the digital revolution, IE stayed affixed embracing technology.
Read more
Economist Communications Ltd is committed to ensuring that your privacy is protected.
Read more
You agree that your use of this Website and the purchase of the magazine will be governed by these terms and conditions.
Read more
S-15, Industrial Estate,
Chennai - 600 032.
PHONE: +91 44 22501236