Ventures under Tata Industries may be shifted to other group companies

MUMBAI: The Tata Group is considering a rejig of the business portfolio of Tata Industries, best known for incubating new ventures for the conglomerate. The plan, though in early stages, involves a possible merger of its health services (Tata Health app), e-commerce (Tata Cliq), ready-to-eat food (Tata Q) and digital classroom content (Tata ClassEdge) businesses with sister Tata companies having a play in similar categories. The proposed rejig is part of group chairman N Chandrasekaran’s consolidation efforts as he bets on consumer-focused businesses to boost the conglomerate’s growth. Tata Cliq, which has largely remained a fringe player in the online shopping space, for instance, could be brought under Tata Digital, the newly created vehicle for the group’s e-commerce initiatives. Tata Digital is in advanced stages of discussions to acquire majority control of Bigbasket. 79418348Likewise, Tata Health (a platform to book doctor appointments, lab tests, and order medicines) could be clubbed with Tata Medical and Diagnostics, the group’s new healthcare arm. Tata Medical recently launched Covid-19 test kits. The conglomerate is also in talks to acquire online pharmacy retailer 1mg. An emailed query sent to Tata Industries remained unanswered till the time of going to the press.Tata Industries’s digital ventures — Tata Cliq and Tata Health (its services are available largely in Bengaluru) — have a limited play in the market and a consolidation including inorganic acquisitions will help Tata Group catch up with bigger rivals like Amazon, Walmart and Reliance Industries, a source said. Tata Q, the ready-to-eat food brand, could be brought under Tata Consumer Products, which recently acquired the packaged foods business of sister company Tata Chemicals. Similarly, Tata ClassEdge fits with Tata Consultancy Services’s iON platform, which is into digital learning.In the past too, Tata Industries has transferred certain businesses to other group companies to facilitate consolidation. For instance, the defence unit. Chandrasekaran has been ramping up efforts to streamline and simplify corporate structure across businesses to reduce legal costs, leverage synergies and scale up operations. Tata Group hasn’t made any final decision on the potential business restructuring at Tata Industries and these proposals are just preliminary considerations, another source said.
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