Grapevine: Actis snaps up Acme’s solar assets; Temasek looks to buy Lakshmi Vilas Bank
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Emerging markets-focussed private equity fund Actis has acquired the solar energy assets with a capacity of 600 megawatt from Acme Cleantech Solutions, a media report said.

Actis outbid Canadian investment firm Brookfield for the deal, The Economic Times reported, citing two people aware of the development.

The deal’s enterprise value—which includes debt—is Rs 3,000 crore while the equity value is pegged at Rs 900 crore, the report said.

The proceeds will help Acme fund additional capacity and repay Rs 700 crore in debt to Piramal Finance, the report said.

Earlier, Actis had been in talks to acquire the solar assets of debt-ridden Essel Infraprojects. The assets were sold to Adani Green Energy Ltd eventually.

Meanwhile, Singapore state investment firm Temasek Holdings is in discussions to acquire a controlling stake in capital-starved Lakshmi Vilas Bank, Business Standard reported citing people aware of the development.

Temasek is seeking regulatory approval to buy a 51% stake in the bank, the report said.

Lakshmi Vilas Bank had last year tried to merge with Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd, but the Reserve Bank of India blocked that transaction. Days before, the RBI had initiated a so-called “prompt corrective action” on the lender due to high level of bad loans, lack of sufficient capital to manage risks and a negative return on assets for two consecutive years.

In another development, The Economic Times reported that Malaysian company Axiata Group Berhad is looking to completely exit Vodafone Idea Ltd after the valuation of its stake in the struggling telecom operator sharply eroded over the past 18 months.

Citing a person familiar with the matter, the report said that Axiata’s 8.15% stake at the time of the Vodafone-Idea merger was valued at roughly Rs 3,500 crore. Now, the diluted 1.05% Axiata stake is only worth Rs 115 crore.

Axiata’s stake had fallen to 2.48% after it decided against participating in Vodafone Idea’s Rs 25,000 crore rights issue last year. Its stake subsequently fell further to 1.05%.

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