TCG to buy West Bengal government’s 40% stake in Haldia Petrochemicals for $280M

The West Bengal government has decided to transfer its shareholding in favour of Purnendu Chatterjee's TCG, which was also a major shareholder in troubled Haldia Petrochemicals Limited (HPL).

Sources close to the development told PTI that West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation (WBIDC) would transfer its block of around 40 per cent to TCG at a price of Rs 25.10 a piece, a price which was offered by state-owned Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) when the government invited EoI last year.

Although IOC turned out to be the sole valid bidder in auction, the transaction fell through as TCG moved court over over the controversial 155 million shares block which WBIDC claimed was owned by it.

Later, IOC withdrew from the transaction process. The PSU was having around nine per cent stake in HPL.

The plant, located at Haldia, had been shut for more than two months with authorities citing reasons of a technical snag.

Asked about the possible outcome of the deal, one of the member of the lenders' consortium to HPL said that with both the warring promoters smoking the peace pipe, this would augur well for the future of the company.

"The company had approached the lenders for additional infusion of funds which would now be forthcoming as the ownership issue will get resolved", the banker said.

The company had long been facing fund crunch and was operating the plant at sub-optimal capacity owing to non-availability of naphtha in desired amount.

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