April 09, 2010

Nuance eyeing Spheris in Auction!

According to this report in Nashville Biz Journal, two companies will go up against "stalking horse" bidder MedQuist Inc (Cbay) in an April 13 auction for the assets of bankrupt Spheris Inc.

"Transcend Services Inc. has joined Nuance Communications Inc. in bidding for bankrupt medical transcription company Spheris Inc. The two companies will go up against “stalking horse” bidder MedQuist Inc. in an April 13 auction administered by a Delaware bankruptcy judge.

Spheris, the nation’s second-largest provider of clinical documentation technology and services, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Feb. 3. At the same time, Spheris announced plans to sell its U.S. operations to MedQuist and its non-bankrupt India subsidiary to CBay for $75.2 million.

However, before the sale can go through, the bankruptcy judge must hold an auction of Spheris’ assets. Today was the deadline for interested buyers to submit bids.

According to court documents filed late today, Transcend and Nuance were the only two bids received. A sale hearing is set for 9 a.m. on April 15."

PS: Interesting development!

February 18, 2010

Coimbatore helping Indian's F1 cause

BBC News has an excellent news story written by thier Indian correspondent Shilpa Kannan on India's bright future in Formula One.

On a bright sunny day in Coimbatore in the southern Indian state of Tamilnadu, hundreds of motor sport enthusiasts have gathered for what they call a festival of speed. One of the few racing events around the country, this event has brought together bikers, saloon car drivers and karting fans.

Read more

Shocking News - KMCH blacklisted!


Earlier this month, The Kovai Medical Centre and Research Institute (a.k.a KMCH), was blacklisted by the Govt. of Tamilnadu and is suspended from performing renal transplantations.

According to this Times of India article:

"Although several rackets have been busted in Tamil Nadu and many reports, including in some leading medical journals like The Lancet, have indicated that there have been sale of organs, no doctor or hospital has ever been proved guilty. The licences of at least 15 hospitals have been withdrawn and suspension notices issued by the directorate of medical services, particularly after the state health department unearthed a kidney trade where the survivors of the December 2004 tsunami were donors. The Kovai Medical Centre and Research Institute, which has been issued suspension this time, was among them."

But on Feb. 11, KMCH was temporarily given nod to perform surgeries on 31 patients who were already registered by the Chennai High Court.

"Allowing a petition from the Coimbatore-based hospital, Justice K Venkataraman said "it would be reasonable to allow it to perform the renal transplantations to the patients for whom already the authorities have given clearance. In his order, the Judge directed the hospital to secure signed declarations from each patient and donor that they were aware of the December 21 last order suspending registration of the hospital for performing renal transplantations. In the declaration, the patients and donors should mention that they were undergoing the transplantation at their own volition and risk and would not hold Tamil Nadu Government responsible for the risks arising out of the operation."

By Hook or by Crook

Read a very interesting story recently in DNA about 3 youths who were caught for altering train tickets in Coimbatore, so that that they could travel to Patna.

The youths had purchased four tickets in unreserved compartment from the city to Tirupur. After erasing Tirupur, they managed to enter the destination as Patna in the computerised tickets.

Wondering how they were caught?? The fourth person cancelled his trip and went to the ticket counter to cancel his ticket!! :-)

February 04, 2010

Spheris goes bust, Cbay to buy in

The rumors finally came true! Spheris filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in a Delaware court on Wednesday. And today they announced plans to be acquired by competitors MedQuist and CBay, portfolio companies of CBay Systems Holdings.

In order to commence the transaction, in which MedQuist will buy Spheris’ domestic assets and CBay its India operations, Spheris has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy relief in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. Prior to court approval of the agreement, there will be a court-supervised competitive bidding process to solicit other qualified bidders. If bidders emerge, an auction would be held prior to a hearing approving the sale. Spheris India did not file for bankruptcy.

Prospective buyers interested in all or some of Spheris’ assets will likely have 30 days after the court approves the auction to submit their bids. The court will choose the winner and approve the final sale.

Other possible players who might bid in, as reported here, are Brentwood-based Webmedx Inc., fourth largest medical transcription service provider in the US; and Atlanta-based Transcend Services Inc., US' third largest player.

PS: Check this news article which sheds light on what's been happening behind the scenes at the troubled medical transcription company

February 03, 2010

Cognizant Coimbatore on a Hiring Spree

S Sujatha of Economic Times Coimbatore Bureau reports:

Cognizant Coimbatore
IT services major Cognizant is well on course to make Coimbatore a key constituent in its success story. It is on a major recruiting
drive from engineering colleges in and around the city and has already filled up half the seats in its newly opened techno-campus inside a private IT-SEZ here.

Described as one of the largest CTS facilities in a tier-II city, the techno-campus built at a cost of Rs 180 crore has seven floors with a capacity to employ 6000 professionals.

The company also has plans to expand the facility and the second phase is expected to add 6500 seats. "We are aggressively increasing our strength at the new facility. In the last few months, we have added hundreds of people and at present, we have 3500 employees ," Cognizant VP and centre head, Coimbatore Vishnu Potty told ET.

"It is a big facility and one of the fastest growing delivery centres in the country. So we want to hire people as quickly as possible," he said, adding the training academy with 20 class rooms inside the new campus is buzzing with activity now.

On the reported delay in sending call letters to last year’s campus placed students, Mr Potty said all of them would come on board by March 2010. CTS has started its next round of campus recruitments and so far around 1900 students have been picked up from selected engineering colleges in and around the city. It is said colleges in this region contribute to 10% of the company’s annual campus hiring.

"We have selected students mainly from Amrita College of Engineering (550), PSG College of Technology (400), Kumaraguru College of Technology (300), Bannari Amman Institute of Technology (150) and Kongu Engineering College (150)," he said. Read more

February 01, 2010

What's cooking at Spheris?

Spheris Inc., has been in the news lately for all the wrong reasons. Rumor mills are churning out new gossips everyday regarding its status. Is it up for sale? Is it bankrupt? Is Cbay Systems taking over Spheris?

Well, consider these first:

In its 2Q earnings call last August, Spheris' CEO Dan Kohl said, "I am not satisfied with where we are at this point. I want to see a clear sign that customers are happy with us and that we’ve begun to really turn the corner in a positive way, which will mean signing some new business, feeling good about that and stopping the losses"

Net revenue, which reached $52.3 million in the first quarter of fiscal year 2007, has fallen every consecutive quarter since, to $40 million in the second quarter of 2009

Last November, days before Spheris would have released its third-quarter earnings, the privately held company terminated its voluntary registration with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Three weeks later, Kohl resigned as CEO just 13 months into the job, and Spheris revealed that it had hired a high-powered turnaround consulting firm to guide the company through a debt restructuring.

In a well-researched and well-written article, April Wortham of Nashville Business Journal has more juice on the status of Spheris. Read on!

December 28, 2009

Coimbatore - Hub for Medical Transcription

LN Revathy of The Hindu has a good article in today's Business Line detailing the growth of the IT/BPO industries in Coimbatore over the years.

She also elaborates on the fact on how Coimbatore has turned itself into a Medical Transcription hub.

The city is set to emerge as the ‘Medical Transcription Outsourcing Capital of India', say leaders in the medical transcription space. Players such as CBay Systems and Spheris have expanded their operations here rapidly. CBay, for instance, has its largest facility here in an area of about 20,000 sq.ft. The company has, in the last eight months, opened up two centres, initiated tie-ups with local colleges to rope in students. A few others are exploring opportunities across the landscape as this (medical transcription) industry is predominantly South-based. Being the chosen hub for MT, the city also has a number of people travelling from smaller towns such as Salem, Erode, Pollachi and Udhagamandalam attracted towards this steadily growing industry.

There's also a dedicated paragraph on small players finding it hard to recruit, as job seekers prefer big brand companies. Read the full article here

PS: The pic used in the article of an MT unit is an old one!!! The one taken of our erstwhile Heartland-KG when they were operating out of KGiSL. This same pic was used for an earlier article too

September 15, 2009

KGiSL inks MoU with InferX

InferX Corporation, a market leader in next generation distributed Predictive Analytics and Business Intelligence Products and Solutions, today announced that it has signed a Memoradum of Understanding (MOU) with KG Information Systems Limited (KGiSL), part of KG Group of companies to develop solutions powered by InferX products and market to its client base in the Banking, Financial Services and Insurance (BFSI) and Healthcare sectors in the United States, India and globally.

The KG Group of companies will license InferX products and develop specific BFSI and Healthcare sector solutions under the guidance and collaboration of InferX technical managers and market to its client base. The solutions will feature InferX's proprietary Predictive Analytics (PA) technology to deliver next generation business intelligence solutions.

"The ability to enhance our current portfolio of business performance management solutions with InferX's real time, distributed predictive analytics technology provides us with a new competitive edge," said Sridharan Srinivasalu, Executive Director of KGiSL Group of Companies. "We are very optimistic about the outlook of our collaboration with InferX."

"Next generation PA for BFSI and Healthcare is essential for organizations that must quickly access large amounts of widely distributed data, often with varying protocols, structures and formats," said B.K. Gogia, InferX Chairman & CEO. "InferX's patented technology complements KGiSL's software solutions portfolio with a key feature -- real time global access to globally distributed structured and unstructured data sources, eliminating the need for centralized data warehousing."

InferX offers a Patented Distributed Data Analytics software that accesses, analyzes and performs predictive analyses in real-time on multiple, distributed, disparate data sources. InferX has pioneered and commercialized a proprietary suite of health care products to improve performance across healthcare delivery systems.

September 05, 2009

Who pulled the trigger on Lehman?

On September 15, 2008 Lehman Brothers filed for Bankruptcy triggering the biggest ever financial crisis faced by mankind. Around 2 million jobs were lost in the US alone and it wiped out life long savings of millions of shareholders.

At its prime, Lehman Brothers was the fourth largest Investment Bank! As we are approaching the first anniversary of the Lehman collapse, which effectively started the subprime mortgage crisis, Channel 4 of UK has done an interesting investigative reporting.

So, who really pulled the trigger on Lehman?