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CLSA PE to acquire 19.6% stake in Camson Bio Technologies for $10M

CLSA Capital Partners is investing around Rs 53 crore (close to $10 million) to acquire 19.6 per cent stake in Bangalore-based agriculture biotechnology firm Camson Bio Technologies Ltd, according to a stock market disclosure.

The deal involves a mix of equity issue and equity convertible warrants.

Bio Harvest, an entity under CLSA Capital Partners, is acquiring 41,95,513 equity shares at $1.1 per unit for a total of $4.6 million (Rs 24.3 crore) in addition to 16,74,327 convertible warrants at $3.21 per warrant for a total of $5.37 million (Rs 28.63 crore). Post the conversion of the warrants into equity, it will own 19.6 per cent stake in Camson Bio Technologies.

Interestingly, the warrant issue is at a substantial premium to the current market price. Camson last traded at Rs 68.7 a share, up 2.16 per cent on the BSE in a weak Mumbai market on Friday. 

This means the equity issue is at a discount to the market price, but the warrant issue is almost three times the market price. 

Founded in 1993, Bangalore-headquartered Camson Bio Technologies focuses on research, production and sale of seeds and biocides. The firm’s technology platform offers micro-organism database, seed germplasm, screening technology, biofertilisers and hybrid seeds. 

For the first nine months of the FY13, the company had revenues of Rs 83 crore with net profit of 15.3 crore. 

CLSA Capital Partners, the alternative assets management arm of the Asian brokerage and investment group CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, has nearly $2.6 billion assets under management and runs offices in Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo. 

This is the first investment by the company in 2013. Last year, it invested in three companies including Earth Water Group, Equitas Holdings Pvt Ltd and Prajay Engineers Syndicate Ltd.

(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)

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