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Phi Advisors invested Rs 80 crore in First Choice

First Choice, the used car arm of Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) group, has received fund infusion to the tune of Rs 80 crore from Phi Advisors, a private equity firm. The funds will be used to finance the roll-out First Choice's chain of 300 owned and franchises outlets across the country. The company plans to have sales of about 100,000 units through the expansion in the next five years. Vinay Sanghi, CEO, FirstChoice Wheels, added, “We are targeting 100,000 vehicle sales per annum by 2013. With this funding, we will increase our reach to over 300 outlets. This will include 30 franchise super stores, each of which will have a stock of over 200 cars on display.” [...]

HDIL buys 51% stake in Adhikari Brothers' firms

Making a foray into broadcasting space, property developer HDIL has bought a 51 per cent stake in media company Broadcast Initiative (BIL), promoted by Sri Adhikari Brothers. HDIL also bought 51 per cent stake each in its subsidiaries Sri Adhikari Brothers Media (SABML), which operates Marathi channel Mi Marathi and Technocraft Media Private (TMPL), which is starting a Bhojpuri channel soon. HDIL did not disclose the acquisition price. HDIL will acquire the stake in BIL, which runs and which runs Hindi news channel Live India, through a mix of fresh issue of preferential shares, equity shares from promoters and subsequent open offer. Sri Adhikari Brothers will retain a balance shareholding which may be up to 24 per cent after the stake sale, HDIL said in a release. HDIL is acquiring 51 per cent in both SABML and TMPL through a mix of fresh issue of capital in SABML and TMPL and purchase of equity shares from existing shareholders of SABML and TMPL. [...]

CDC invests $250m in Indian funds

UK government-backed private equity emerging markets fund of funds manager CDC Group has made new commitments totalling $250m to three funds focused on infrastructure and real estate investment in India. The funds are expected to raise a total of $1.6bn for investment. CDC has committed $100m to both the IDFC India Infrastructure Fund and the Actis India Real Estate Fund. The IDFC fund will invest between $15m and $75m in infrastructure projects in the energy, transportation and telecoms sectors. The fund will be managed by IDFC Project Equity, a newly established subsidiary of IDFC. [...]

Tata Comm picks up 30% more stake in Neotel

As rival Reliance Communications dabbles with its deal with South African telecom major MTN, telecom service provider, Tata Communication is poised to hold majority share in South Africa's telecom company, Neotel. Tata Comm has entered into an agreement with South African state-owned enterprises, Eskom and Transnet to acquire their 30% stake for an undisclosed amount. Tata Communication has an existing shareholding of 26% in the South African company which will increase to 56% along with Tata Africa Holdings, through this acquisition. Tata Africa Holdings is the investment arm of the Tata Group of companies in South Africa with operations in 8 countries in Africa. The agreement is subject to fulfilment of conditions which could take upto six months. The other shareholders of Neotel include Nexus, Communitel and Two Telecom Consortium. [...]

ICICI Ventures may list $1.5 bn realty fund on London bourse

ICICI Venture Fund Management is planning to list its $1.5 billion real estate fund on the London Stock Exchange (LSE). According to sources, the fund house will be providing the flexibility in the document to list the realty fund anytime during its life span. When contacted, an official spokesperson for ICICI Ventures offered no comments. At present, the fund house is in the process of preparing the documents for both its real estate and private equity (PE) funds. This is the first time that the country's largest PE fund is providing this option in its fund. “Internationally, private equities look at listing their funds. If it's a close-ended fund, investors have to wait till its maturity. However, if the listing option is built into the document, then the PE fund can exercise it at any future date,” said a senior executive of a large domestic PE fund. [...]

GMR Infra picks up 50% stake in Dutch power firm

Bangalore-based GMR Infrastructure has bought a 50 per cent equity stake in Dutch power utility InterGen NV for $ 1.1 billion from AIG HighStar, a fund owned by American International Group Inc. The remaining 50 per cent in the company is owned by Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan (Teachers). The company will pay $360,000 per megawatt which is half the current cost of similar facility, GMR said in a statement to the Bombay Stock Exchange today. InterGen NV currently has operations in 5 countries–UK, Mexico, Philippines, Australia and Netherlands with total net capacity of 12,766 Megawatts (8086 MW of operational capacity and 4680 MW of asset under development). “The acquisition of a 50 per cent stake in InterGen NV is an integral part of our global strategy to be world's leading energy and infrastructure company. This acquisition will provide us a platform to expand in InterGen's existing geographies and new geographies of strategic importance to GMR and Teachers. Our core experience in the energy business life cycle covers identifying opportunities, developing assets in greenfield areas, strong project management skills, financial re-structuring and efficient operations,” said GM Rao, Group Chairman of GMR Group. [...]

Religare arm gets Rs 100-cr funding from StanChart

Religare Finvest Limited (RFL), a wholly owned subsidiary of integrated finance services provider Religare Enterprises, has issued Compulsorily Convertible Debentures for Rs 100 crore to Standard Chartered Bank, Mauritius. These debentures would be converted into equity of RFL to the extent of 40 per cent at the end of 13 months and balance at the end of 25 months at a price to be fixed per Controller of Capital Issues (CCI) guidelines. These debentures will form part of the Tier II capital of the company and will strengthen the capital adequacy ratio of RFL, Religare said in a release. RFL is registered with the Reserve Bank of India as a Non-Banking Finance Company (NBFC) and is a member of the Central Depository Services Limited (CDSL). Religare Finvest is presently engaged in capital market lending, consumer finance and third party distribution through its personal financial services channel. [...]

Idea Offers to Buy 61% of Spice Communications for $757 Million

Idea Cellular Ltd., the fastest growing of India's five biggest mobile-phone carriers, offered 32.4 billion rupees ($757 million) for control of Spice Communications Ltd. to increase subscribers by a sixth. Idea, controlled by Indian billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla, agreed to buy a 41 percent stake from MCorpGlobal Communications Pvt. for 77.30 rupees a share and will make an open offer for a further 20 percent at the same price, 41 percent more than Spice's closing price yesterday. Idea would add about 4.5 million customers, closing in on Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd., India's fourth-largest carrier. India is projected by the telecom ministry to double its number of mobile-phone subscribers to 500 million in two years, after surpassing the U.S. as the biggest market next to China in April. [...]