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Grapevine: PE funds in fray to buy Reliance\'s power distribution biz; Nippon eyes stake in IndusInd
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A group of investors including Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), Actis LLP and Brookfield Asset Management have shown initial interest in buying Reliance Infrastructure Ltd’s Delhi electricity distribution businesses, three people privy to the development told Mint.

The other potential investors are Greenko Energy Holdings, Enel Group, I Squared Capital, Torrent Power and Wade Capital Group LLC.

Anil Ambani has put on the block 51% stake each in BSES Rajdhani Power Ltd (BRPL) and BSES Yamuna Power Ltd (BYPL), the people added.

Reliance Infrastructure’s plan to sell the businesses follows the sale of its Mumbai city power distribution business to Adani Transmission Ltd for Rs 18,800 crore in August 2018.

Delhi registered the lowest aggregate technical and commercial loss of 9.7% in the country, where the average loss is 21.4%, the highest in the world, the Mint report said, adding that the national capital’s electricity demand touched an all-time high of 7,409 megawatts (MW) in July last year.

Meanwhile, Nippon Life, Japan’s largest life insurer, is exploring a strategic investment in Hinduja family-backed IndusInd Bank, people in the know told The Economic Times.

This could help Nippon to get a much-needed bancassurance partner for distributing its insurance products and secure big corporate treasury money for its asset management business in India, the people said.

The bank is currently exploring an option to raise up to $750 million in “confidence capital” and has approached marquee global investors such as Blackstone, Apax Partners, General Atlantic, Advent, TPG and Carlyle for the same.

These talks with Nippon are, however, preliminary and may or may not translate into a transaction, the people added.

In another development, Rahul Bhatia, who is the biggest shareholder of Indian budget carrier IndiGo, is considering a bid for Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd through his InterGlobe Enterprises Ltd (IGEL).

IGEL will be joining a score of suitors seeking to capitalize on Asia’s first airline casualty from the coronavirus pandemic, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg.

IndiGo denied an earlier report it plans to bid for Virgin Australia. The proposal is being prepared by InterGlobe Enterprises, and not by IndiGo, the person said.

Virgin Australia has attracted at least 20 potential buyers and targeting a deal by the end of June.

According to the Australian Financial Review, the Indian proposal aims to relaunch the airline in its original form as a low-cost carrier to return it to profit.

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