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Posts tagged as ITC

SOTC Travel taking omni-channel approach for expansion

Travel services provider SOTC Travel Friday said it is focusing on an omni-channel approach for expansion and is taking a slew of initiatives.
For this, the company is taking steps to strengthen both online and offline presence in the country.
Currently its distribution centres operates in over 60 cities and towns across India, it said.”As a part of our strategy to increase our online presence, the bulk of our investments are diverted towards streamlining our processes and investing in technology, in order to ensure omni-channel coherence,” SOTC Travel MD Vishal Suri told PTI.
Currently the company sells about 15-18 per cent of its holidays solely through online sales, he added.Highlighting that the customers also prefer to physically interact with the company for certain services, Suri said: “Be it visa, ticketing, or other information pertaining to documentation; customers are more comfortable visiting a brick and mortar store, which is conveniently and centrally located.

For this reason, the company will continue to invest in an omni-channel strategy, he added.”As a part of our investment cycle in this approach, we already have a physical presence in major cities across the country, and will continue to expand in tier 2 and tier 3 markets,” Suri said.
Given company’s omni-channel approach, it has paid considerable attention to ensuring that while alternating between the online and offline models, the customers enjoy a seamless transition, and that the company is well-aligned with its offerings, he added.On being asked about the business segments of the company, Suri said: “We have a Holiday Business, under which, we offer both domestic and international holidays, distributed online as well as offline.
Being a B2C retail or consumer business, it has both physical and digital channels.”
The company also has a significant presence in the Meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) business and has recently pioneered the concept of incentive travel in India, he added.
“We are also a travel management company, and we deliver business travel and corporate travel solutions to large companies, administering the travel policy for them,” Suri said.Recently the company has also ventured into Foreign Exchange business.
At this point in time, it has started foreign exchange activities in Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Chennai, he added.When asked if the company was also looking at expanding its existing portfolio, Suri said SOTC Travel is essentially a travel and holiday business, and that’s who it wants to be.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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Realtors hail option to charge old GST rates on ongoing projects

The real estate industry on Tuesday hailed the GST Council’s decision to allow realty firms charge old GST rates from buyers in those projects,Last month, the Council had decided to cut GST rate on affordable homes to 1 per cent without input tax credit (ITC) from earlier 8 per cent with ITC.
The GST on under-construction flats, which are not under the affordable housing segment, was reduced to 5 per cent without ITC, from 12 per cent earlier with ITC. These rates will be effective from April 1.While approving a transition plan for the implementation of new tax structure from the next fiscal, the GST Council decided that the developers of residential projects, which are incomplete as on March 31, will have an option either to choose the old structure with ITC or to shift to new 5 per cent and 1 per cent rates without ITC.“The real estate industry is particularly happy that the Government has taken all precautions to ensure a smooth and easy transition to the new regime of rates, and allowed the option to follow the existing rates for ongoing projects.
“The period of wait and watch as regards to GST for both the industry and the consumers is now over. We should expect colour to return to the real estate this Holi,” CREDAI President Jaxay Shah said in a statement.Transition issuesNAREDCO’s President Niranjan Hiranandani said the GST Council addresses the transition issues on ITC for the ongoing projects making it flexible for the developers to choose between the old GST and new GST schemes.The option to developers will help avoid operational hassles, he said, adding that the developers who choose the new GST rates will have to proportionately reverse their input credit.CII’s Director-General Chandrajit Banerjee said: “Providing choice to realtors to opt for the reduced rates or continue with existing rates with input tax credit for ongoing housing projects shall make compliance easier for them”. He said the real estate industry had taken up the issue of complexities of apportioning and reversal of input tax credit for the ongoing projects.
Anarock Chairman Anuj Puri termed this decision as an intelligent move by the incumbent government. “With this decision, it has carefully side-stepped conflict with both builders and buyers”.Some reprieveKnight Frank India CMD Shishir Baijal said the announcement of giving developers a choice of tax regime for ongoing projects has brought some reprieve to developers’ concern on the loss of ITC in the new regime.“The choice of selecting the GST regime would depend on the respective project dynamics.The ones with healthy sales traction are likely to continue with the earlier regime to maintain their profitability,” he said.

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