Private equity firm Clearwater Capital Partners, along with investment firm Beaumaris Investments Ltd, have increased their holdings in IT solutions firm GSS Infotech Ltd (formerly GSS America Infotech Ltd) to 17.42 per cent, the company has disclosed in a statement to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

The PE firms acquired 4.17 per cent stake last week for an estimated Rs 2 crore.

According to the disclosure, Beaumaris Investments Ltd and Clearwater Capital Partners already held 2.12 per cent and 11.18 per cent, respectively.

Since the revised open offer norms for listed companies have been raised from 15 per cent to 25 per cent, the additional stake purchase will not trigger a mandatory tender offer.

However, investors reacted positively to the news. At 2:06 pm, shares of GSS Infotech were trading at Rs 46.40 on the BSE, after hitting the upper circuit for the day by shooting up 4.98 per cent from the previous close.

Clearwater’s investment strategy certainly suggests that it may go ahead with more stake purchase in the firm. Only last week, the PE firm made an open offer to increase its stake in the hospitality company Kamat Hotels India Ltd (KHIL). The open offer for another 26 per cent stake came as Clearwater had converted its foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCBs) during the last two months.

This resulted in Clearwater’s stake in Kamat rising to more than 32 per cent, past the new open offer threshold of 25 per cent. In 2010, Clearwater Capital also made an open offer, increasing its stake to 26 per cent in Vadodara-based Sayaji Hotels.

GSS Infotech, which went public four years ago, is also backed by other PE firms. While IL&FS PE owns 13.12 per cent stake in the firm, AIM-listed Kubera Cross Border Fund owns 7 per cent stake in the company.

Last month, GSS Infotech had received its board’s nod to raise $75 million or Rs 385 crore through foreign currency convertible bonds/American depository receipts/global depository receipts and qualified institutional placement (QIP).

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