Advent Closing In On BT's Tech Mahindra Stake - Private equity powerhouse Advent International has intensified its negotiations with UK telecom major BT to acquire its sizeable stake in Tech Mahindra, the IT company of the diversified Mahindra Group. BT has been associated with Tech Mahindra since the latter’s inception and contributes 40 per cent to the firm’s revenue but it has been looking at divesting its stake. As on June 30, BT held 23.27 per cent stake, which equals 29.5 million equity shares. (Business Standard)

Accel Shelves $400M India Fund Plans - Marquee silicon valley venture capitalist Accel Partners, best known for its early investment in Facebook, has scrapped plans to raise $400 million India-focused fund due poor market conditions and increased competition among private equity investors in the country. Accel's proposed fund would have invested larger tranches of growth capital in mature business, unlike early stage venture funding it does in India currently. (Times of India)

Muthoot Ups CSB Stake - The Muthoot Pappachan Group has increased its holding in Catholic Syrian Bank? (CSB) to around 3% by buying stakes from shareholders in multiple transactions. This is the latest round of a major share transaction involving the Kerala-based private sector lender, which has been the subject of acquisition rumours in recent years. Muthoot first picked up a 1% stake in CSB late last year and said it intended to increase its holding in the bank to 5%.

Pragati India To Raise Rs 225Cr - Venture capital fund Pragati India is looking to raise around Rs 225 crore (USD 50 million) in the next six months. It has already closed $50 million as the initial corpus of the fund and will raise another $50 million in the next six months. This is the first fund from the venture capital firm that focuses on investment in small and medium sector enterprises (SME). (Economic Times)

Kuoni To Buy Mid-Sized Fims For Rs 300Cr - Swiss tour and travel operator Kuoni Group’s fully-owned Indian subsidiary Kuoni Travel Holding or Kuoni India plans to purchase two mid-sized companies in the next three months for anywhere between Rs 200 crore and Rs 300 crore. The acquisitions are part of the company’s strategy to create a strong presence in India, rather than relying on small offices across the country connected to the main office in Mumbai. (Financial Express)

Cotton County To Sell 51% To PEs - Discount retailer Cotton County Retail Ltd is in talks with private equity investors and apparel companies to sell up to 51% stake. The Ludhiana-based company has roped in Religare Capital Markets to advise on the transaction. Industry insiders quote current valuation of the retailer between Rs 250-300 crore. This is almost half of the valuation it got in 2008 when private equity firm Sequoia Capital invested Rs 120 crore for more than 20% stake. (Economic Times)

Wipro To Sell Data Centres, Other Assets - India's third biggest software exporter Wipro is evaluating options to sell data centres and other computer hardware assets of its US subsidiary Infocrossing to unlock value from what the company now calls 'non-core' business. Wipro has already received initial offers from several medium to large US telcos, and the company is deliberating to carve out five data centres owned by Infocrossing for a potential sale estimated to be worth anywhere between $300 million and $400 million. (Economic Times)

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