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Blackstone may have acquired Comstar; Ebix eyes Centrum Direct

02 April, 2018

Private equity major Blackstone Group Lp has acquired Chennai-based auto component maker Comstar Automotive Technologies Pvt. Ltd for about Rs 1,000 crore ($150 million), a financial daily reported.

Citing one person aware of the development, Mint said that the deal was signed between the Blackstone Group and Comstar’s controlling shareholders – Hong Kong-based hedge fund Argyle Street Management and the Chandaria family – a month ago.

Comstar, formerly Visteon Powertrain Control Systems India Pvt. Ltd, was established in 1997. It designs and makes starting and charging systems for passenger cars and commercial vehicles. The company has two manufacturing plants – one each in Chennai and Tecumseh, US, according to its website.

Ebix-Centrum Direct
US-based software firm Ebix Inc. has agreed to buy Centrum Direct Ltd, the foreign exchange services arm of Centrum Capital Ltd, for about $200 million (Rs 1,300 crore), The Economic Times reported.

Centrum Capital had been looking to sell its foreign exchange business to focus more on the lending business, the report added. However, the ET report was denied by both Ebix and Centrum Direct.

In February 2017, a group of investors, led by Jacob Ballas Capital and NYLIM Jacob Ballas, had acquired a minority stake in Centrum Direct.

The services offered by Centrum Direct include foreign exchange, corporate and leisure travel, insurance, visa and e-business. It has a network of 125 branches across 48 cities, according to its website.

Essar Steel auction
Singapore-based special situations investment firm SSG Capital Management Group may partner with another entity to bid for debt-laden Essar Steel in the second round of bidding, ET reported.

ArcelorMittal and Numetal will also put in their fresh bids for Essar Steel.

ArcelorMittal may partner with Nippon Steel to bid for the company. The Numetal consortium is planning to buyout partner Rewant Ruia-led Aurora Trust’s 25% stake in the company to meet Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code norms before making fresh bids, the report added.

Aurora Trust’s link to promoters of the Essar Steel led to the disqualification of Numetal’s bid in the first round.

The Committee of Creditors has only considered suitors, who had submitted expressions of interest for Essar Steel in the first round, for the second round of bidding.

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Blackstone may have acquired Comstar; Ebix eyes Centrum Direct

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