TMT
By 27 October, 2008

Nalanda Capital, the Singapore-based private equity (PE) investment firm, has acquired 9.99% stake in software solutions firm Mastek Ltd. The stake has been purchased through two open market bulk deals, one in August and other one in October. Nalanda has acquired the stake for a total sum of Rs 77 crore.

Nalanda Capital is a $400 million equity fund with a mandate to invest only in publicly listed firms and has been started by ex-Warburg Pincus Pulak Prasad. Some of its other recent investments are Page Industries, Carborundum Universal Ltd, and Kirloskar Oil Engines. It has also invested NYSE-listed WNS (Holdings) and Jaipur-based Vaibhav Gems.

Nalanda India Fund acquired 1.29 million shares of Mastek in late August at a price of Rs 361 per share from Lehman Brothers. On 22nd October, it bought 1.4 million shares at Rs 217.5 each, bringing down its average purchase price. Mastek's shares closed at Rs 206 on Monday.

Mastek, which is focused on the insurance segment, reported a 7% increase in net profit in the July-September quarter. The firm also said the impact of the prevailing macroeconomic environment on it is "expected to be limited given that it derives most of its revenue from relatively stable verticals".

Mastek also has a couple of acquisitions under its belt, both in the insurance space. In March this year it acquired US-based STG International for $29 million in an all-cash deal. Then it had also acquired Vector Insurance Services LLC for $10 million last year.

ChrysCapital has picked up stakes in several Indian IT companies through open market bulk deals. The private equity fund has invested in IT companies such as Infosys, HCL Technologies and also Hexaware Technologies.

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