Kishore Biyani’s Future Group is in talks with Actis Capital to buy supermarket chain Nilgiris: Kishore Biyani-owned Future Group, is negotiating with private equity firm Actis Capital to buy Nilgiris, a Bangalore-based supermarket chain in which it holds a majority stake, a person with knowledge of the negotiations said. If the deal eventually goes through, it will give Biyani control over 140 supermarket chains in south India, where the Future Group is trying to boost its presence. In 2006, UK-based Actis had bought 65% for about $65 million in Nilgiris. Last year, Actis had mandated HSBC’s investment banking unit to find a buyer. At that time, Actis was seeking an enterprise value of $150-170 million for Nilgiris. (Economic Times)
LIC Housing Finance plans to raise at least Rs 200 crore via zero coupon bonds: Mortgage lender LIC Housing Finance Ltd. is planning to raise at least Rs 200 crore ($32.03 million) via five-year zero coupon bonds, with an 18-month put option at 9.85%, two sources with direct knowledge of the deal said. ICICI Securities Primary Dealership and Axis Bank are the arrangers for the bond sale. ()
HDFC plans to raise at least Rs 500 crore via bonds: Housing Development Finance Corp Ltd is planning to raise at least Rs 500 crore ($80.07 million) via 1-year bonds at 9.96%, two sources with direct knowledge of the deal said. HSBC is the sole arranger to the bond sale, the sources said. ()
Arvind may buy 49% in Calvin Klein India: Amerian clothing giant Philip Van-Heusen Corp (PVH) may induct Arvind Ltd as its new joint venture partner for Calvin Klein in India, one year after it acquired the designer jeans brand for $2.9 billion, people familiar with the matter told. Calvin Klein has an existing India JV in which the Murjani Group and venture capital firm Matrix Partners India together hold a 49% stake. The Sanjay Lalbhai-led Arvind is expected to replace the two existing minority shareholders. The new alignment would see PVH deepening its ties with Arvind, which manages its other brands like Arrow and IZOD in the local market through Arvind Lifestyle Brands. It also owns 50% stake in Tommy Hilfiger’s Indian unit. In 2011, Murjani had struck a 49:51 JV with Warnaco which owned the rights for Calvin Klein globally. (Times of India)
RMZ plans to buy Four Seasons Bangalore in $100m deal: Southern IT Park developer RMZ Corp is set to buy India’s second Four Seasons hotel project in Bangalore for over Rs 400 crore ($64 million), in which Wall Street bellwether Goldman Sachs has controlling stake. The sources added that RMZ’s final offer, which includes taking over a debt of Rs 180 crore from State Bank of India, could potentially value the luxury hospitality project a shy under $100 million (Rs 620 crore). The buyout, expected to be completed before the year end, comes after a six-month-long bid process that saw the participation of global fund houses, GIC of Singapore, Xander, and Tishman Speyer including bigwig developers K Raheja Corp, Embassy Group, Oberoi Realty, and Shriram Properties. Investment bank MAPE was advising Goldman Sachs on the sale process. RMZ will bring in a private equity investor into the acquisition vehicle to retire part of the buyout costs, talks for which have already started. (Times of India)
Ascendas plans to invest Rs 3,000 cr in Indian cities: Singapore-based commercial space developer Ascendas Pte Ltd has launched the Ascendas India Growth Programme, targeting an asset size of over Rs 3,000 crore (S$600 million) to invest in commercial space in major Indian cities. Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC Pvt. Ltd is a principal investor in the programme. The target investments include business space developments, which may have other complementary uses and completed business space assets in Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi-National Capital Region, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Pune. The programme complements Ascendas’ existing funds for India, such as Ascendas India Trust (a-iTrust, a Singapore Stock Exchange listed business trust) and Ascendas India Development Trust (a fully-invested private equity fund). (Business Line)
United Spirits may sell some cheaper brands: Diageo: The improvement in sales and margins at United Spirits Ltd (USL) will take much longer than what most analysts expect and the debt-laden distiller may sell or shut down some cheaper brands that are not profitable, said controlling shareholder Diageo. Diageo completed its purchase of a 25.02% stake in United Spirits in July after the companies announced the deal in November last year. ()
USL trying to keep Whyte & Mackay in its fold: With just a couple of days left for the Office of Fair Trade (OFT) in London to announce a decision on whether United Spirits will be able to retain control over its scotch subsidiary Whyte & Mackay, there is market buzz United Spirits has started scouting for a buyer for the asset, valued at $1.5 billion (Rs 9,306 crore). After Diageo, the London-headquartered spirits major, acquired 25.02 per cent strategic management stake in United Spirits, OFT has been studying the deal to ascertain whether the fact that Diageo indirectly controlled Whyte & Mackay would lead to monopoly in the market. It is understood OFT will announce a decision on the matter on or before November 25. In 2007, United Spirits had acquired Whyte & Mackay in a highly leveraged deal for $1.2 billion. Since then, it has been slowly turning around the company to be more of a branded player, instead of a bulk supplier of scotch. (Business Standard)
Airtel may sell tower biz in Africa for $1.8 billion: Bharti Airtel may sell its telecom tower business in Africa for $1.8 billion (Rs 11,167 crore). If the deal goes through, this will help the company to reduce its debt of $9.69 billion (as of September). Earlier, it was reported the company may consider transferring the tower business to its Indian tower unit. Bharti has 15,000 towers in Africa. It has reportedly received expression of interest from Helios, ATC, Eaton and IHS. Majority of Bharti’s debt is because of its $10.7-bliion acquisition of Zain Telecom’s Africa business in Africa in 2010. (Business Standard)
Shotformats plans IPO, Nasdaq listing in 2 years: Shotformats Digital Production Pvt. Ltd. is planning to come out with an Initial Public Offering (IPO) and get listed on the Nasdaq in the next two years. Being a digital products firm, a Nasdaq listing would give Shotformats a better valuation, according to Niyati Shah, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director. It plans to expand its Educate India campaign next month and have 10,000 outlets to distribute products by March 2014. Currently, it has 2,000 such outlets across six States, she said. (Business Line)
Gaming firm Delta Corp to exit real estate business to stay debt-free: Delta Corp Ltd, the Mumbai-based gaming and hospitality company, plans to set up a casino resort in Sri Lanka and sell non-core assets, including real estate, to become a debt-free company over the next 18 months.The company has acquired an 11 acre prime parcel of land in the island-nation, which has been marked for development as a casino resort, said chairman Jaydev Mody. Mody and family, hold 41.72% of the company’s shares. Indian investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala holds 6.8% and private equity firm ICICI Venture holds a 5.99% stake in the company. The company, which has a debt of Rs.300 crore, has already exited the real estate business in Kenya. The firm plans to raise around Rs 200 crore ($32 million) by selling real estate assets. (Live Mint)
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