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Grapevine: Temasek, TrueNorth, CPPIB eye Biocon unit stake; PayU may buy PaySense
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Singapore state investor Temasek, private equity firm TrueNorth, and Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) are in separate discussions with Biocon Biologics India Ltd to acquire a minority stake for close to $300 million (Rs 2,146.5 crore at current exchange rate), people aware of the matter told The Economic Times.

Biocon Biologics, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Biocon Ltd, may be valued at over Rs 28,000 crore ($4 billion), one of the persons said.

Both Temasek and TrueNorth have been Biocon backers and this will be the third time that TrueNorth will be backing a Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw entity, the report said.

Meanwhile, online payment company PayU, a subsidiary of South African media and e-commerce group Naspers, is in talks to acquire consumer lending platform PaySense Services India Pvt. Ltd at a valuation of up to $70 million (Rs 501 crore at current exchange rate), two persons in the know told The Economic Times, adding this could be a cash-and-stock deal.

Last year, PayU led an $18 million Series B round of funding in PaySense, and already owns close to 20% of the business. Previous backers Jungle Ventures and Nexus Venture Partners had also participated in the round.

Earlier this year, PayU acquired Accel-backed digital payments firm Wibmo Inc. for $70 million.

In another development, people in the know told The Economic Times that Analjit Singh, the founding promoter of the Max group, is in talks to sell 10% of his stake in the holding company for Max Life Insurance Ltd for up to Rs 1,200 crore ($167.7 million at current exchange rate).

Hero Corp., the flagship company of Sunil Kant Munjal, is among the frontrunners to pick up the stake in Max Financial Services Ltd, the report said. The proposed fundraising is aimed at deleveraging, the persons added.

As per the plan, Max Financial Services will also consolidate its stake in Max Life Insurance to over 97% from 71.79% through a share swap with Japan’s Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, the insurer’s joint venture partner.

Mitsui Sumitomo will exchange its 26.12% stake in Max Life Insurance for a 21.45% holding in Max Financial Services along with cash of about Rs 815 crore, the report added.

Also, NRI businessman Apurv Bagri is looking to buy Andromeda Sales and Distribution Pvt. Ltd, one of India’s biggest loan distributors, from Wadhawan Global Capital, the owner of troubled Dewan Housing Finance Corp. Ltd (DHFL), for about Rs 150 crore ($21 million at current exchange rate), a person in the know told The Economic Times.

The transaction will be completed through Bagri’s Metdist Group, the report said. Metdist currently owns Atyati Technologies, a Bengaluru-based fintech company and jeans maker Spykar.

Separately, two persons in the know told The Economic Times that Tiger Global Management, Sequoia Capital India and Singapore's Economic Development Board are investing $20 million (Rs 142 crore) in InterviewBit Academy, a reskilling startup where people pay up only after getting hired.

The deal will value the startup at over $100 million (Rs 714 crore), the report said, adding that Pune-based InterviewBit began in late 2014 and pivoted to its current business model about six months ago.

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