UK-based independent financial advisory group Collins Stewart Hawkpoint Plc has pulled the plug out of its four-and-a-half-year-old Indian joint venture by selling its 50 per cent stake in Collins Stewart Inga to the Indian partner. Simultaneously, it has also struck a business alliance with financial services firm ICICI Securities Ltd to grow each other’s business franchises.

Collins Stewart Hawkpoint spokesman told VCCircle, “The deal is done in terms of deal contract being signed, but is subject to SEBI approval.”

The London Stock Exchange-listed firm has said in its interim results for the first half of 2011, “During the period, the Group agreed to sell 50 per cent holding in its Indian joint venture, CS Inga. The operating profit for the six months to June 30, 2011, includes £0.8 million charge, reflecting the write-down of the Group’s 50 per cent share of the net assets of Collins Stewart Inga to the anticipated sale proceeds of £ 0.1 million.”

In early 2007, it had picked the stake in boutique advisory firm Inga Advisors Pvt Ltd, a firm promoted by chartered accountant GS Ganesh.

New India Partner

Simultaneously, Collins Stewart Hawkpoint has struck an alliance with ICICI Securities, which is a part of India’s second largest lender ICICI Bank. The alliance covers a wide range of investment banking and institutional sales activities, including corporate advisory services, research-led agency securities trading and capital markets advice, the firm said on Thursday.

The opportunities to be explored jointly will include advisory services, private equity transactions, debt advisory services and other corporate finance advice.

In addition, the alliance will cover introductions of Indian companies to the London securities markets, distribution of the offerings and placements of Indian or dual-listed securities in the UK and Europe, joint publication and distribution of research on over 100 Indian listed companies in the UK and Europe and the facilitation of secondary trading of securities of Indian listed companies through ICICI Securities.

Anup Bagchi, managing director & chief executive officer of ICICI Securities said, “Over the years, corporate clients have been seeking opportunities to enhance their presence in the UK and Europe to gain access to their technologies and markets. At the same time, investors are keen to participate in Indian investments, both primary as well as secondary.”

Mark Brown, chief executive of Collins Stewart Hawkpoint, commented, “India presents Collins Stewart Hawkpoint with a wide range of opportunities in corporate advisory activities and capital markets, and this arrangement plays to the strengths of our investment banking activities.”

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