Amazon eyes Future Retail stake; Bhushan Power lenders choose JSW’s revised bid
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US-based e-commerce giant Amazon is set to buy a stake of just under 10% in Kishore Biyani-led Future Retail Ltd, The Times of India reported, citing people in the know.

Future Retail’s board may approve the deal on 29 October. Amazon may pick up the shares at a premium to the prevailing share price, the report said.

The deal could have some business exclusivity clauses, the report added.

Shares of Future Retail were trading 2% higher at Rs 504.10 apiece on the Bombay Stock Exchange at noon on Wednesday, giving the company a market value of Rs 25,372 crore. This means a 10% stake could cost Amazon at least Rs 2,537 crore ($345 million).

In September, Amazon and private equity firm Samara Capital agreed to buy Aditya Birla Retail Ltd’s food and grocery retail chain More.

Future Retail operates supermarkets under the brands Big Bazaar and Easyday as well as an electronics chain Ezone.

Over the past few years, Future Group has acquired a number of retail chains across the country, including Raheja’s Hypercity Retail in 2017, convenience store chain Big Apple in 2012 and south Indian retail chain Nilgiri’s in November 2014.

Bhushan Power lenders vote for JSW Steel

The committee of creditors of debt-laden Bhushan Power and Steel have chosen the revised offer submitted by Sajjan Jindal-led JSW Steel, The Economic Times reported, citing people directly in the know.

JSW Steel’s offer of Rs 19,300 crore was approved by nearly 90% of the lenders, the report added.

Tata Steel and UK-based Liberty House are also in fray to acquire the company.

Bhushan Power and Steel is undergoing a corporate insolvency resolution process initiated by the National Company Law Tribunal. It is one of 12 large loan defaulters identified by the Reserve Bank of India in its first list for debt resolution under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.

Sanjay Singhal-promoted Bhushan Power has a debt of around Rs 47,000 crore.

SEBI may ease listing process for startups

Markets regulator the Securities and Exchange Board of India is considering proposals to ease the norms for startups to list on the stock exchanges. This would allow entrepreneurs to deem themselves as ordinary shareholders and relieve them of the mandatory three-year lock-in period, The Economic Times reported.

SEBI is also considering exempting promoters of their fiduciary responsibilities, the report added, citing two people in the know.

The proposals were deliberated by a SEBI-appointed committee and the final terms will be part of a final recommendation report which will be submitted in November, the ET report said.    

The three-year lock-in period prevents private equity investors from getting a timely exit. So, the committee may suggest reducing the lock-in period to six months for all pre-initial public offering shareholders, the report added.

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