ING Group fully exits Kotak Mahindra Bank
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Dutch financial services firm ING Group on Friday sold its remaining stake in Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd, India’s fourth-largest private-sector lender by assets.

ING sold 58.45 million Kotak shares, representing a 3.06% stake, via bulk deals on the NSE for Rs 7,171.21 crore ($1 billion) before accounting for statutory levies and transaction costs, stock-exchange data showed.

The names of the buyers were not disclosed.

ING had sold more than a third of its holding in the lender in September 2016, nearly two years after acquiring the stake as part of an all-stock merger between its local banking venture and Kotak.

ING had then sold 2.5% for Rs 3,653 crore ($543 million) in an open-market transaction. The sale reduced ING’s stake in the lender to 3.9% from 6.4%.

At the time, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), an existing investor in Kotak Mahindra Bank, had bought ING’s shares.

When ING sold Kotak shares via another tranche last November, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC increased its shareholding in Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd while Scottish investment firm Edinburgh Dragon Trust and TfL (Transport for London) Pension Fund bought minority stakes in the bank.

With ING’s exit, its director Mark Newman who represented ING on the board of Kotak also resigned from his position, the private-sector lender separately informed the stock exchanges on Friday.

Shares of Kotak Mahindra Bank closed on the NSE at Rs 1,238.25, down 3.95% from the previous close. It commands a market capitalisation of nearly Rs 2.4 lakh crore, and is valued even higher than ICICI Bank, India's second- largest private lender by assets. ICICI Bank commands a market capitalisation of Rs 2.26 lakh crore, while rival HDFC Bank commands a market cap of Rs 5.69 lakh crore and is also India's largest private sector bank by the size of its balance sheet.

Kotak Mahindra Bank has been an attractive bet for private equity investors in the past. Private equity major Warburg Pincus completed its exit from the Uday Kotak-led bank in 2012, making around four times returns in the process.

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