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Bharti, RIL among 10 Indian firms in Forbes Fab 50

September 04, 2008 17:48 IST

Ten Indian companies led by the likes of state-run Bharat Heavy Electricals, telecom major Bharti Airtel and Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries have made their way into the Forbes' list of 50 best listed companies in the Asia-Pacific region.

The 'Asian Fabulous 50' ranking is topped by Taiwan-based computer maker Acer, while BHEL and Bharti Airtel are the top ranked Indian companies at the overall fifth and sixth spots.

Acer is followed by Chinese steel maker Angang Steel, Taiwan's Asustek Computer and Indonesia's Bank Rakyat Indonesia at the second, third and fourth spots, respectively.

Among Indian firms, BHEL and Bharti Airtel are followed by private sector lender HDFC Bank (22), IT bellwether Infosys (25), diversified conglomerate ITC (27), engineering and infrastructure firm Larsen & Toubro (30), auto maker Mahindra & Mahindra (34), Reliance Industries (39), world's sixth largest steel maker Tata Steel (44) and software exporter Wipro (46).

Among countries, China has the maximum representation with 13 firms, while India comes second with its 10 companies.

"Indian companies once again had a strong showing, with 10 making our cut. Infosys and Wipro, perennial top performers, are back for the fourth year. Reliance Industries, Bharat Heavy and Larsen & Toubro are back for the third year.

"Consumer-oriented companies such as Bharti Airtel, HDFC Bank, Mahindra & Mahindra and ITC are growing with India's middle class," the magazine said in an accompanying report.

The list is based on long-term profitability, sales and earnings growth, stock price appreciation and projected earnings for every company in the region with revenues or market capitalisation of at least $5 billion.

BHEL which is country's largest energy equipment provider holds about 60-65 per cent market share of India's power capacity additions. However, the magazine said rising prices of commodities could put the company's margins under pressure in the next several years.

On Bharti Airtel, the report said, "as many as 10 million new subscribers sign up every month for wireless access in India.

"One in 4 sign up with Bharti Airtel, not only to make calls but also to access the web, download cricket scores and send billions of text messages."

The report added that the firm is maxing out its allotted airwaves and that more spectrum should help Bharti Airtel "steal more wireless Web customers."

The magazine said RIL is India's largest private sector company, accounting for 3 per cent of the nation's GDP and 13 per cent of its exports.

Forbes added that the firm is also entering into joint-venture with US office property developer Vornado. Each would shell out $250 million to open shopping centers throughout India.

On Tata Steel, the magazine said that Ratan Tata transformed his steel company from a south Asian foundry into an enterprise also spanning the rest of Asia, Europe and the US with the $13-billion takeover of Anglo-Dutch Corus Group last year.

There are 23 rookies making their first appearance in the list and most of them are from China. Japan and South Korea are represented by three and two companies, respectively.

Chiyoda, Nintendo and Yahoo! Japan have made it to the league of 50 from Japan, while Doosan and LG are from South Korea, the magazine said.

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