In its second deal in as many weeks, Reliance Equity Advisors has invested Rs 136 crore in VVF Ltd, which manufactures and markets personal care products and oleochemicals. The private equity arm of Anil Ambani’s Reliance Capital has invested in different entities of the VVF group through a combination of equity shares and compulsorily convertible debentures.

The transaction was completed last week. Amarchand & Mangaldas advised Reliance Equity Advisors while AZB & Partners represented VVF Ltd.

E-mail queries sent to VVF and Reliance Equity Advisors did not elicit any response till the time of posting this article.

Last week, Reliance Equity Advisors invested Rs 110 crore in Mumbai-based Max Flex and Imaging Systems Ltd, a manufacturer and distributor of printing-related consumables.

VVF’s product range includes soap bars, liquid soaps, fatty alcohols and acids, glycerine, soap noodles and liquid bulk storage. In addition, it offers contract manufacturing services and also develops products for the hospitality segment. The Mumbai-based company was founded in 1939.

Besides organic growth, VVF has expanded its manufacturing facilities overseas by buying plants from MNCs across the globe. In 2007, the company bought a major bar soap and home care liquid manufacturing facility in the USA from Colgate Palmolive. In 2008, it purchased a bar soap and noodle manufacturing plant from Henkel in Poland.

In June this year, VVF sold its soap brands Aramusk and Moloy to Wipro Consumer Care for an undisclosed amount. The company had acquired those from German consumer product major Henkel.

According to a media report, VVF cleared some of its short-term debt and converted a part of it into long-term debt in a financial restructuring earlier this year. Its plans include expanding its branded business and also looking at JVs in Africa. The company also plans to set up an oleochemicals plant in Indonesia and a personal care product plant in Russia.

Its current soap brands include Jo, Doy and Bacter Shield, besides a hair oil product called Mahabringol. The company has also launched hair colour powder under the Jo brand in September this year.

VVF, which is privately held, derives around 60 per cent of its revenues from oleochemicals while the rest comes from contract manufacturing and its own branded personal care products. In India, the company has manufacturing facilities in Sion, Taloja, Kutch and Baddi.

This is the fourth investment of Reliance Equity Advisors, which is currently investing from a fund worth Rs 1,200 crore, raised from domestic investors. The PE firm made its debut by infusing Rs 100 crore in Sarla Holdings, which runs international schools under the brand Pathways World School. And most recently, it has made another investment in Shankara Infrastructure Materials.

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