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Grapevine: Zydus Cadila may sell two units; Lodha Group looking to raise $210 mn
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Drugmaker Zydus Cadila is in preliminary talks with several strategic and private equity investors to sell two of its divisions — anti-infectives and gynaecology — for up to Rs 1,200 crore ($168 million at current exchange rate), seeking to lower debt and strengthen its balance sheet.

Zydus has approached larger rivals such as Cipla and Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, besides financial investors, such as Advent International, Blackstone, KKR and Carlyle, persons in the know told The Economic Times.

After the US business, formulations in India is the second-largest contributor to Zydus’ consolidated revenues. The two divisions being considered for divestment are major contributors to this formulations division revenue, the report said.

This is part of a broader strategy to reduce debt after the Rs 4,600 crore acquisition earlier this year of the Indian unit of The Kraft Heinz Company. The funding of the acquisition was through a mix of debt and equity.

Separately, Lodha Group is looking to raise close to Rs 1,500 crore ($210.4 million at current exchange rate) through monetisation of two commercial assets to reduce its debt, which is currently about Rs 16,000 crore, a top executive told The Economic Times, requesting not to be named.

Lodha Xperia Mall in Palava City, Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) and its under-construction commercial portfolio of around 9 million square feet at locations including Thane, Lower Parel, Prabhadevi and Andheri are the two identified assets, the executive said.

According to the report, the company on Tuesday sold a commercial tower in its Wadala project New Cuffe Parade to a consortium led by Singapore-based Varde Partners and Tata Group for Rs 1,300 crore. In September, Lodha group was reportedly looking to sell about 700,000 square feet office space in Wadala, Mumbai to Singapore-based Varde Partners for Rs 1,100 crore ($155 million then) .

In another development, Canadian pension fund CDPQ is considering two options to launch its India infrastructure investment trust (InvIT) — it would either be publicly listed or privately listed, people familiar with the matter told The Economic Times.

“CDPQ tends to be choosy about investors. If it is unable to get calibre investors, they may opt for a private InvIT,” said one of the people. At least five investors are needed to launch a privately held InvIT.

CDPQ aims to save tax by housing road assets which were acquired from Global Infrastructure Partners worth Rs 2,400 crore under the InvIT. Outside the InvIT, assets will be subject to pay up to 24% tax while under InvIT the levy is up to 12%.

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