October 2009
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Matrix Partners invests Rs 20 crore in mobile VAS firm

Venture Capital firm Matrix Partners has invested Rs 20 crore in Ver se Innovation, a Bangalore-based provider of classified services on mobile phone. Ver se Innovation, which provides mobile classified services in categories like jobs, matrimonials and real estate, was seed-funded by OnMobile Global, a mobile VAS player incubated by Infosys, India’s second largest IT services firm. Besides, OnMobile had a global distribution agreement with Ver se Innovation. Post the funding, Aravind Rao, chairman and CEO of OnMobile, and Rishi Navani, co-founder and MD of Matrix India, will join the board of Ver se Innovation. “We are excited about the consumer mobile services opportunities in India and what Ver se has been able to accomplish in a short period of time. We look forward to partnering with Ver se team, and we highly value the partnership with OnMobile Global, said Rishi Navani, co-founder and MD of Matrix India. […]

Aditya Birla PE Fund to pick up 0.5% in BSE

Aditya Birla Private Equity Fund, which is looking to raise Rs 1,250 crore, has finalised some investments, including 0.5 per cent in the country’s oldest exchange, the Bombay Stock Exchange, said sources close to the development. The sources said the fund is likely to pay Rs 21 crore for the 0.5 per cent in BSE, thereby valuing the exchange at Rs 4,200 crore ($0.9 billion). When asked, the BSE spokesperson declined to comment. According to analysts, BSE’s rival and the market leader, National Stock Exchange, has been valued at $2.5 billion. Financial Technologies-promoted MCX-SX, yet to start operations, has been valued at $1 bn, based on its sale of stake to IFCI. […]

Buyout firms find the going tough in India

Some of the world’s largest buyout firms that made a beeline for India a few years ago now say they may have misjudged the market. Firms such as KKR and Co. Lp and Carlyle Group Ltd say the world’s third fastest growing economy has more companies that need growth capital than those ready for buyouts. In other words, these global private equity (PE) firms with large funds and specializing in taking over companies are wary of acquiring controlling stakes in Indian firms in the current environment. They would rather make growth-stage investments like smaller private equity firms do, typically in the $10-35 million (Rs46-161 crore) bracket. […]

NDTV to buy back NBC stake

New Delhi Television Ltd (NDTV) said in an announcement to the Bombay Stock Exchange that it would buy back the 26% stake NBC Universal Inc. holds in its non-news subsidiary NDTV Networks Plc that runs several channels, including entertainment channel NDTV Imagine. The firm didn’t spell out the financial aspect of the deal. Late on Tuesday evening, website contentSutra.com reported, citing a person familiar with the development, that NDTV is in talks with Time Warner Inc. and Malaysia’s Astro All Asia Networks Plc to replace NBC. NDTV declined comment for the contentSutra story, which couldn’t independently be verified by Mint. NDTV is buying the stake through its arm NDTV Networks BV. In May 2008, NBC had acquired the 26% stake in NDTV Networks for $150 million (Rs689 crore today). […]