August 2008
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USD 10 bn ready to make India entry through FVCIs

Lack of clarity over foreign venture capital investments (FVCIs) in India has led to 83 applications from foreign venture capital firms piling up with the Reserve Bank of India for approval. Of these, about 28 venture funds (non-real estate funds) which have sought approval have committed close to $10 billion to India, according to lawyers involved with the registration process. Most of these foreign private equity firms have given an undertaking that they would not invest in the real estate sector or in related activities. According to sources close to the development, policymakers and financial sector regulators are working towards harmonising the regulations related to foreign venture capital investment, foreign direct investment and domestic venture capital investment. “RBI is looking into a broad-based policy issue with regard to the foreign venture capital investments in the country,” […]

Foreign VCFs may get only equity stake

The government is likely to bar foreign venture capital funds (VCF) from investing in compulsory convertible debentures (CCD) and other quasi-equity instruments. Officials rewriting the norms governing foreign venture capital investor (FVCI) plan to restrict investments to pure equity. Sources said the new definition of venture funding would ensure they are directed towards equity that has risk associated with it. Fundamentally, venture funding is associated with risk as its aim is to finance startups and upcoming entrepreneurs. However, there is a view among the policymakers that venture capital funds have been avoiding the risks associated with funding startups and going in for more secure forms and avenues of investments such as debt and listed securities. […]

ONGC Videsh to buy Imperial for Rs11,382 crore

India’s biggest exploration company, Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd (ONGC), agreed to buy Russia-focused British oil and gas firm Imperial Energy Plc. for £1.4 billion (Rs11,382 crore) to tap Siberian deposits and make up for dwindling output at home. ONGC’s overseas arm, ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), has made a cash offer of 1,250 pence a share, worth 61.9% more than Imperial Energy’s share price on 11 July, the day before the London-based company said it received a bid, according to a statement distributed by Regulatory News Service. China Petroleum and Chemical Corp., known as Sinopec, indicated on Tuesday it may bid for Imperial Energy as well. Imperial Energy had 920 million barrels of oil reserves, as of December […]

Singapore's GIC may pick up 10% in Arcil

The investment arm of the Government of Singapore, GIC, may pick up slightly below 10% stake in Asset Reconstruction Company of India (Arcil), subject to approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB). Arcil is the country’s largest asset reconstruction company (ARC). Sources said an internal Arcil committee has approved GIC’s proposal to acquire 9-10% stake for around Rs 275 crore, which translates to Rs 80-90 per share. When contacted by ET, Arcil president and CEO S Khasnobis declined to comment on the issue. Recently, Arcil concluded its rights issue, which was followed by a private placement of equity. […]

Sequoia Capital to invest Rs 120 cr in Cotton County

Embarking on an aggressive expansion plan for its flagship brand Cotton County, Cotton County Retail Ltd will receive an investment of Rs 120 crore from Sequoia Capital India, which manages $1.1 billion in funds. Cotton County, engaged in ready-to-wear apparel retail business, is an integrated player across the entire value chain of manufacturing and retailing. It has a presence in over 350 cities. With existing more than 500 exclusive outlets, Cotton County is planning to increase its retail footprint to over 1,000 stores by 2010. […]

BT Considering Sale of Its 31% Stake in Tech Mahindra

BT Group Plc may sell its 31 percent stake in India's Tech Mahindra Ltd., the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the matter. BT is considering selling all or a large part of its stake in the joint software services venture because it does not fit with its long-term strategy, the newspaper said. The proposed sale of the holding would be one of the largest in the Indian outsourcing industry, the FT said. Tech Mahindra has a market capitalization of about $2.2 billion. […]

Info-drive Software acquires 51% stake in California based Technoprism

Info-drive Software Ltd announced the acquisition of Technoprism LLC, a leading software solutions firm based in San Jose, California. Info-drive Software Ltd, through its US subsidiary Info-drive Software Inc, has taken a 51% stake in Technoprism LLC which has been executing turnkey software projects and IP-led business applications development, to some of the most recognized technology giants in the Silicon Valley, over the last 9 years of its operation. The firm has deep domain expertise in full life cycle product development using varied platforms and databases Including Java, Oracle and variety of middleware tools. […]

3i may put $229 mln in Indian port operator

Private equity firm 3i Group may invest 8-10 billion rupees (99-24 million pounds) in a south Indian port operator for a stake of up to 26 percent, the Mint newspaper said, citing an official at the Indian firm. 3i has filed for approval with the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB), which clears overseas investments into India, the paper cited Chinta Visweswar Rao, chairman of CVR Group, which controls Krishnapatnam Port Co, as saying. The port operator will sign an agreement with 3i only after it “obtained clearance from FIPB”, Rao was cited as saying. […]