Darby Overseas Investments Ltd, the private equity arm of Franklin Templeton Investments, has raised a Rs 630 crore ($147 million) fund to invest in India. Darby's Indian arm has worked with Franklin Templeton to raise a private equity portfolio oriented towards high net worth individuals (HNIs) in the Indian retail market.
The fund plans to invest in sectors such as infrastructure, manufacturing, and consumer goods, and in related sectors. It plans to invest in high growth, mid-sized unlisted companies in India. Another
similar fund that closed recently was TVS Shriram Growth Fund, which also raised money from domestic investors. Yet another fund which is targeting the HNI's is Cinema Capital Venture Fund.
Franklin Templeton Private Equity Strategy is a closed-ended fund managed by Franklin Templeton (India) while Darby Asia Investors (India) Pvt Ltd. is the investment advisor to FTPES. The funds India investments are headed by Deepa Sankaran.
Some of Darby's investments include $25 million in Café Coffee Day and $18 million in Bangalore-based Bhoruka Power Corporation. Both of these investments were made earlier this year from $300 million Darby Asia Mezzanine Fund II.
"Indian HNIs who were earlier focused on equity markets/funds have become more open to explore alternative assets classes such as private equity. Despite the expected moderation, the Indian economy will continue to be one of the fastest growing economies in the world and
the rising demand for private capital will help this product to capture the growth potential in an effective way," said , Vivek Kudva, President – Franklin Templeton (India).