Franklin Templeton, a US fund manager, has invested $20.6 million (around Rs 93.4 crore) in Shiv-Vani Oil & Gas Exploration Services Ltd, a New Delhi-based company engaged in the exploration and production of oil and natural gas.

The investment is made through Templeton Strategic Emerging Markets Fund III LDC (TSEMF III), an emerging market focused fund, it said in a statement. TSEMF III is the third strategic equity fund managed by Templeton Asset Management Ltd (TAML), an investment management company incorporated in Singapore. As of February 2010, TAML has $33.4 billion in assets under management.

Though Franklin did not disclose at what stake the fund is investing in Shiv-Vani Oil, an earlier VCCircle report stated that this could be around 5-6%. Citigroup Venture Capital International, another PE firm, holds more than 6% stake in Shiv-Vani Oil.

The shares of Shiv-Vani Oil were traded at Rs 354.5, down by Rs 413, up by Rs 6.85 or 1.69% at 3:10 pm in the BSE on Monday. At the prevailing stock prices, the company has a market capitalization at Rs 1,804.29 crore.

Shiv-Vani Oil is one of India’s largest onshore oil & gas services provider focused on deep well drilling and seismic services. It offers shot hole drilling, seismic surveying, directional drilling, well development, down hole operations, engineering and logistics. Its clients include Oil & natural Gas Corporation Ltd (ONGC), the leading oil and gas exploration company in India.

Padam Singhee, joint managing director, Shiv-Vani, said, in the statement, “the funding will fuel our aggressive growth plans in strengthening our position as a global player in the area of oil & gas exploration services.”

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