BCCL raising stake in Gujarat NRE Coke

Kolkata-based coking coal firm Gujarat NRE Coke Ltd is raising Rs 12.6 crore ($2.07 million) from ad-for-equity media investor Bennett Coleman & Co. Ltd (BCCL), as per a stock market disclosure. 

The firm has decided to issue 5.6 million warrants at Rs 22.50 each through a preferential allotment to BCCL. On conversion into equity shares, this will translate into around 1 per cent stake of the diluted capital base of the firm. It will also take BCCL’s holding to around 1.6 per cent. 

In May 2009, BCCL invested Rs 20 crore in Gujarat NRE Coke via its subsidiary Brand Capital and through convertible warrants at Rs 50 per share, and later converted those into shares. The latest move could bring down the average cost of investment per share for BCCL. Gujarat NRE Coke scrip has tanked over the past three years. 

Founded in 1986, Gujarat NRE is the largest independent producer of met coke in India with an installed capacity of 1.458 MTPA. 

Two months ago, Gujarat NRE Coking Coal, the Australian Stock Exchange-listed arm of Gujarat NRE Coke, was planning to raise Rs 373 crore via issue of shares. 

BCCL usually invests through ad-for-equity deals where it picks up stake for the value of ads to be published/broadcast through its various media platforms. BCCL runs various publications including The Times of India and The Economic Times besides the Times Now news channel, among others.

This will be the sixth investment by the firm this year. In January, it invested in three companies – Bloom Dekor Ltd (manufacturer of decorative laminates), C Mahendra Exports Ltd (jewellery firm) and Provestment Services Ltd (consulting firm). In March, it invested in Dalmia Continental Pvt Ltd (olive and canola oil firm) and in July, in M N and C Supply Links Retail Pvt Ltd (which runs online retail venture

(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)

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