Standard Chartered IL&FS Asia Infrastructure Growth Fund is making its maiden India investment. It is picking up a 5% stake in IL&FS Transportation Networks (ITNL) for Rs 130 crore, valuing the firm at Rs 2,600 crore ($520 million). A subsidiary of IL&FS, ITNL is into transport infrastructure services and construction projects.

The Singapore-based joint infrastructure fund, co-sponsored by Standard Chartered and IL&FS which has a corpus of $568 million, will acquire around 8.5 million shares from SCB Asian Infrastructure Fund which in turn is represented by IL&FS Trust Company at a price ranging between Rs 145-155 per share valuing the transaction between Rs 124-132 crore.

Existing investors in ITNL include Trinity Capital (2.5%) and Goldman Sachs (5%). Trikona, the asset manager for Trinity Capital, had acquired the 2.5% stake in October 2006 at a price which is estimated to be around Rs 88/share. Goldman Sachs had come in last year picking up a 5% in May 2007 at an estimated price of Rs 100/share.

The latest transaction translates into a 45-55% increase in value for Goldman Sachs' investment in 18 months, and almost 70% growth for Trinity Capital in two years.

Mumbai-based ITNL is into project development, implementation, construction management, operations and management of toll roads besides advisory services related to road projects. It has a portfolio of around 11 road projects across the country.

ITNL has equity stakes ranging from minority interest to 100% equity in various road projects including: Andhra Pradesh Expressway, West Gujarat Expressway, North Karnataka Expressway, East Hyderabad Expressway, ITNL Enso Rail Systems, ITNL Toll Management Services, Gujarat Road Infrastructure Company, Thiruvanthapuram Road Development Company, Chhattisgarh Road Infrastructure Company and Tamil Nadu Road Development Company. In addition, ITNL is also the largest shareholder of public listed firm Noida Toll Bridge Company.

Currently, IL&FS has 78.75% in ITNL and IL&FS Employees Welfare Trust holds 8.75%. The rest is held by Goldman Sachs, Trinity Capital and SCB Asian Infrastructure Fund.

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