July 2009
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GP Group bought stake in Noble Grains

Hong Kong's Noble Group, Asia's largest diversified commodities trading company, has sold its majority stake in Noble Grains India, a joint venture with the Mansingka family, to Thailand's GP Group, which has interests in shipping, trading and hsopitality, owned by millionaire Kirit Shah. With this deal, Noble Group has exited India's vegetable oils and oilseeds sector for now. India has the world's third largest edible oils sector. (ET) [...]

Deal St’s back in action as fund woes ease

Merger and acquisition (M&A) activity in the country picked up pace in June, with improved economic conditions and better availability of funds prompting corporates to dust off their long-shelved consolidation plans. According to the latest data compiled by advisory firm Grant Thornton, there were 26 M&A deals valued at $850.62 million in June, the most in a month since December. The number of such deals ranged between 17 and 21 since last December, considerably less than the average of 40-60 such deals recorded every month in 2007-08. The slowdown in deal activity in 2009 has been attributed to the global credit crisis, which dried up funding for acquisitions. Companies usually use a mix of debt and equity to finance M&As. Banks and financial institutions, troubled by the credit crunch, had turned cautious on funding deals. [...]

43 foreign venture funds await RBI approval

At least 43 foreign venture capital investors have been unable to begin investing in Indian start-ups because the requisite permissions from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) have been delayed. Ten applications have been pending since 2005 and 11 more since 2006. Among the venture capital investors knocking at the door are Google Holdings Pte Ltd, DE Shaw Composite Investments, Sabre Abraaj Infrastructure Co. Pvt. Ltd and Kotak India Venture Ltd. Capital markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) is the regulator for venture capital investors but it typically routes applications from foreign funds through RBI and clears them only after the central bank gives its nod. RBI gets involved because capital flows across national borders are involved. Currently, there are 129 foreign venture funds and 132 domestic funds operating in India. [...]

IFCI acquires 5-per cent stake in MCX-SX ne

IFCI Ltd has acquired 5-per cent stake in MCX Stock Exchange Ltd from Financial Technologies (India) Ltd for Rs250crore, the company said in a filing with the Bombay Stock Exchange. MCX-SX has sold its stake at Rs 35 per share, valuing at Rs 5,000 crore in the second round of disinvestments. It started its first round of divestments last month in order to meet the regulatory requirements. In the first week of June, the company had announced divesting 18 per cent of its equity to Indian banks. Of this, it had sold 6.48 per cent to Union Bank of India and Bank of India through a primary offering for Rs 87.5 crore. The banks picked up shares at Rs10 per share, valuing the exchange at Rs 1,390 crore at that time. [...]

India Future Group gets $30 mln from private equity

Future Group on Monday said private equity firm Fung Capital has agreed to invest $30 million in Future Logistics Solutions, its logistics and supply chain unit. The Future Group includes Pantaloon Retail, India's largest listed retailer, and Future Capital Holding , the group's financial arm. Fung Capital is the private equity arm of the controlling shareholders of Li & Fung Group, which had annual revenues of $16.7 billion in 2008. (Reuters) [...]