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Axis PE to launch second fund soon

Axis Private Equity (PE), a fund sponsored by the third largest private sector lender Axis Bank, plans to invest Rs 200 crore in two more companies, while it lines up its second fund. The second fund will hit the market later this year.

While its first fund with a corpus of Rs 600 crore was primarily raised from the domestic market, especially from some large banks and companies, it aims to raise the second fund from abroad. The company, however, declined to disclose the details of the forthcoming fund.

Raising fund internationally is difficult at the moment as limited partners (LPs) are closely evaluating the performance of PE players. Of late, LPs have started buying interests of other LPs at a discount.

He added that new funds would see smaller commitment from LPs. “If an LP is not able to meet his commitment which he is perpetually bound to, he sells it to another LP. So LPs are looking at secondary transactions as they are available at a discount,” said Alok Gupta, CEO, Axis PE. However, there has been a gap in secondary transactions and their closure is becoming more difficult.

With most of its investments in infrastructure and related areas, Axis PE calls its fund as the first derivative of an infrastructure fund.

“It is the service provider who makes money in more seasons than the asset owners himself,” said Gupta. Axis PE’s investment themes in infrastructure sector are railways, energy, logistics, oil and gas pipelines, water supply and sanitation.

The Mumbai-based fund’s first investment was to the tune of Rs 126 crore in Delhi-based Harish Chandra India (HCIL), a railway line building company; Rs 75 crore in hospitality company Neesa Leisure and Rs 67 crore in oil and gas pipeline developer Corrtech International Private Ltd, followed by Rs 60 crore in Vishwa Infrastructures.

It recently invested Rs 54 crore in Shalivahana Green Energy (SGEL), with IL&FS as the co-investor. SGEL is a renewable energy player with focus on development and operation of biomass, waste-to-energy and small hydro power projects.

Source: Business Standard

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