Global investment firm Xander has hiked its holding in Tata group’s public listed retail company Trent Ltd. It acquired an additional 3 per cent stake in Trent for Rs 107.4 crore ($18 million) from its own co-founder Siddharth Yog, who sold his entire individual holding on Thursday.
Xander held 2.2 per cent in Trent as of December 31, 2013 through Dodona Holdings, a fund managed by it. With the latest deal it would own over 5 per cent in Trent. Xander has exposure of 1-2 per cent in various public listed companies but this is the first time when it owns as much as 5 per cent stake in a listed entity.
This development has been in the works for over a month and comes at a time when Trent has entered into a deal to form an equal joint venture with world’s third-largest retailer Tesco.
Besides running department chain Westside, Trent is the operator of Star Bazaar through Trent Hypercity Ltd. Tesco Plc has signed an agreement to pick 50 per cent equity stake in Trent Hypermarket for around Rs 850 crore ($140 million) including purchase of shares worth Rs 150 crore from Trent.
Interestingly, way back in 2007, while celebrating its second anniversary Xander Inc had signed a strategic alliance with Trent where the retailer decided to have anchor tenancy rights in retail projects where Xander is an investor.
Media reports indicate that the pact was called off last year. VCCircle could not immediately ascertain the status of the venture.
Xander is the sponsor of Virtuous Retail, the retail real estate business arm which is developing assets in Surat, Chennai, Bangalore, Pune, Kolkata and Mumbai.
The Xander Group Inc, an investment firm co-founded by Yog, currently manages assets worth $2.1 billion. Xander has invested $1.5 billion in real estate, retail, infrastructure and hotel companies in India. Apart from Yog, the firm’s founding members include Lord (Jacob) Rothschild’s family interests and RIT Capital Partners plc, The Getty Family Trusts, Professor Arthur I Segel, Poorvu Family Professor of Management Practice, The Harvard Business School.
Trent's shares closed at Rs 1,019.15 a unit, down 0.88 per cent on BSE in a strong Mumbai market on Thursday.
Two years ago PremjiInvest had picked a stake in Trent.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)